Afterlives name change to VOO. Protagonist finds themself transported to the first realm.
Instantly the orb and I are teleported to the front of giant pearly gates, with golden metal frames. The orb matches the gates. The ground is soft, wait, on further inspection, it isn’t ground at all. There are clouds beneath our feet! The orb winds back down and says, “Welcome to the kingdom of Heaven, according to Christianity.”
It’s a very stunning sight but very cliche. Two angels come flying from behind the inside of the gates, carrying some items. They land and greet me with an olive branch, a golden harp and a pair of wings. I interject,
“I’m sorry, these things won’t be necessary. I am only visiting for a moment.”
The angels look slightly disappointed but respectfully take the items back and make their way back into the kingdom. The orb and I follow and the gates open automatically for us.
We walk down various roads, but all of them are paved in gold! It’s absolutely incredible. Every structure gigantic and almost everything sparkled. It’s a real wonder how it doesn’t blind everyone but then again, no one’s alive here. Not like on earth. I’m sure that the rules of that place hold no meaning in the afterlife, how could they?
At the end of one of the roads, we come to the central court area. The majority of the inhabitants are gathered in this location. They’re on their knees bowing, all of them facing the same target: the man at the front, looking back as the crowd praises him. It‘s apparent, within the context, that the man being praised is Yehoshua, or more modernly known as Jesus. He’s sitting on the most magnificent golden throne, containing every single jewel. I observe for a little while before turning to the orb,
“Is anyone allowed to speak to Jesus?”
“I don’t see why not.”
“Well I was under the impression that Jesus loves everyone.”
Somehow, the only thing that I’m starting to remember is some spiritual knowledge. Everything is slowly coming back to me, except for any memories pertaining to my identity in the third dimension.
“You are correct, however, it has been ages since anyone has dared to speak to him.”
“Oh, why is that?”
“Most come to worship him out of thanks that they have not been condemned. They do not want to take any risk offending him. Even when they have made it here, they still hold onto the fear of going to hell.”
“Is there a hell if this place exists? Or am I not allowed to ask you that.”
“Actually your question is acceptable, since it has nothing to do with your current situation. If you were to be condemned, you would not have met me in the first place. You would have been left to the guilt of your own doing. I hope that answer suffices.”
“It does, thank you.”
I work up the courage to walk over to the throne area. Jesus greets me with a smile. He is gentle and kind. He even calls me his “child.” I don’t take long to get to the heart of the discussion.
“Lord, what is the meaning of life?”
“My child, if you studied scripture more, you would already know that answer.”
“I remember that I did in fact read scripture. I was deeply invested in it’s knowledge, but I can’t remember why I stopped. Forgive me for my lack of memories, but the only thing I had come across -- that was any sort of answer, was to worship you forever and always. That was about it.”
“You wouldn’t be wrong to say so, child. That is a very crucial part to righteousness. Worship me with all your heart, with all your soul and all your mind.”
I ramp up the conversation into a near debate with the messiah god.
“Why have free will then?”
“I want my children to choose to love me, I don’t want to force them.”
I shoot back at him, “but Lord, it would be better to not have free will and remain none the wiser. There’s a good chance we would be happier. No one would worship you solely on the fear of being condemned. Hell would have no place.”
Jesus doesn’t answer. Instead, he smiles and winks at me. Then, the kingdom of Heaven fades away entirely and I find myself back in the emptiness. I’m confused, so I look for answers from the only other source I have,
“Guide, what’s going on here?”
“That doesn’t usually happen.”
“What doesn’t happen?”
“You saw through the facade of that afterlife.”
The orb doesn’t even wait for me to process the information, it just keeps going.
“You see, there is a semi-hidden amendment here. There are facades and other illusions built into many beliefs that crumble the more you analyze and question them.
It is part of the conditioning you received during your time in the third dimension. An unfortunate byproduct of being raised on a world where ego reigns. If you can see the holes of each religion or spiritual dogma, you achieve the greatest afterlife. You will be tested in many realms. If you cannot dispel the illusion of any of the afterlives, you might remain there for eternity.
You successfully passed this first trial.”
“Is this some kind of sick joke you pull on the deceased?”
“Your argument about the purpose of the human race, with the addition of free will, broke the illusion.”
“Okay, what’s the greatest afterlife then?”
“That is the ultimate secret of this place.”
This is becoming more interesting than before. Still, the only thing I’m concerned about is trying to figure out who I was. If I did, I could get out of here somehow.