My Mother Read Revelations And Wept
Over my fate outlined therein...
"But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
- Revelation 21:8
...this took place just before I went around to her house for dinner and there found she was hysterical over the stew and dumplings about my looming eternal torment.
As I've mentioned before, I'm the only godless member of an extended fundamentalist family of about 35 spread over 3 generations. The rest all look forward to their deaths with macabre relish and at family gatherings even discuss the subjective nature of their private versions of heaven, replete with rivers of chocolate and good times just "hangin' out with the lord..." who apparently has nothing better to do than spend time with creatures whose every future thought has been known since the beginning of universal time.
So, given Mum was well informed by her own research about the ascending smokes of hell I asked her if she would light hell if god asked her to. She replied that if god asked her to light the fire of hell he would not be god but satan. She became fervently worked up over this and began to cry, which is her rather emotional nature.
So I asked her if she was setting her own morality above that of god rejecting the proposition that billions deserve incineration for their terrible sins, to which after a silent moment she would not directly reply, other than to suggest hell probably wasn't real anyway. Now, we often lambast the godly here but it's pretty obvious most of them are stuck in a cycle of terror, desperate to please the school bully. How sad to waste life trembling before these imagined horrors instead of reveling in the sense of awe that comes with the conscious realisation of your own too-brief and fragmentary existence.
"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck