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Homesick for Earth -- Invitation to Write #33

For Writers:

I can understand wanting to meet and reunite with family members in Heaven, but why would anyone care to meet those that once were famous on Earth? First, Joe Blow, why would Gandhi want to meet you? But second, what value does Einstein, Lincoln, Gandhi, or anyone else have outside the context of an Earthly existence?

Other than the Jehovah’s Witnesses, I don’t know of any group that believes Heaven will be located on Earth. In other words, the context we know (Earth and mortal life) ends when we move on to the next stage (Heaven). And it’s my thesis that anything of value that we learn on Earth loses much, if not all, of its value once we leave Earth. Will you really care about literature, history, geography, etc., in Heaven? Why would you?

Ray Bradbury’s story “Dark They Were and Golden Eyed” does a pretty good job illustrating my point. In that story, the last survivors of Earth escape to Mars to begin a new life. In the beginning, they do their best to recreate the life they knew, naming Martian landmarks after locations on Earth, etc. Soon enough, however, the Earthlings literally evolve into Martians, and the relevence of what they knew about Earth quickly evaporates. Mars doesn’t become a new Earth, and likewise, Heaven will not be Earth. Whatever value people and their experiences have in Earthly life ends with death. In Heaven, what came before will have no meaning, just as the context of Earth soon had no meaning to Bradbury’s Martians.

Have you ever felt like the only Martian on the block? Describe a time when you decided that it was okay not to follow the crowd, even if that meant you would face scorn and ridicule from friends and family.

"I never wanted to go away, and the hard part now is the leaving you all. I'm not afraid, but it seems as if I should be homesick for you even in heaven." – Louisa May Alcott


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