Newcomer's guide to Heaven
- Don't seek out your idols. This may seem harsh, but many of the people you most adore are intensely private, and don't want to be subjected to constant attention. Some of our most popular residents suffer thousands of would-be visitors every single day, and I'm sure you agree that isn't Heaven! To discourage behavior like this, some of the most sorely afflicted have been assigned incognito identities courtesy of people who are not here. Remember, they're just single persons! If you want someone who can handle everyone all the time, pour your heart out to Jesus. This is the reason His is the only name in the telephone directory of Heaven.
- Not everyone is here. It may seem surprising to you, but not every criminal was caught before death. Thus, even if someone you think should be here is missing, don't think something has gone wrong; everyone had secret sins, and sometimes those sins were more than what Heaven can take. Since speculation about these matters will not change anything and is likely to cause only grief, we beseech you to not inquire about anyone you don't see round here. Angels will not answers questions of this nature.
- Not everything is possible, not even in Heaven. The interplay of ethics and sins is complex, and the consequences of all actions are not immediately apparent. Sometimes the tangled web of wants and results can be unravelled only by the Highest; and we trust Him to unravel it as is best for us all. We know that some of the restrictions here may seem arbitrary and exasperating, and we sympathize, but they all have a reason deserving of their harshness and inflexibility: to protect all of you from sin, and to keep you all pure in your devotion to the Lord and the spotless sinlessness of Heaven. Remember, if you ever feel unsure if some action or thought is wrong, ask us! Every angel is happy to help you in this regard, and Jesus has always time for you!
- There is no want in Heaven. There is no buying or selling, for there is no need for it. There is no industry and no competition. There is no research and no book-learning. All you need is provided to you, and all you need to know is within your heart which knows that to worship God is the greatest goal of all. Note that you need no food nor drink for the radiance of God sustains you with its everpresent love. If a desire persists, stomp out that remainder of the sins of gluttony and greed for they are not worthy of you, or of the splendor of Heaven!
- There is no desire in Heaven. In Heaven, there is no marriage, no sex, and no desire for the intimacy of flesh. Your need for such needless pursuits will fade with time. Our desires here are not focused on each other, but on the praise of God, in whose sole light we thrive and find joy. If you have any remainders of the sin of lust, ask us to help!
- Be not proud. To think of your own comfort over the perfection of Heaven is a hint of pride. Even the highest of angels was laid low by the whispers of this insidious snake; do not let it invade your breast. As without doubt faith is nothing, so without the joy of self-order Heaven is meaningless.
- Do not desire the lot of your neighbor. To question your lot in relation to that of others is a shimmer of envy, which has no place in Heaven. Do not question the lot of saints, or that of those who are not here. These things have been decided by powers in which you can trust though their reasons are hidden from you. The weighing of souls is not a work for the souled.
- Be dutiful. To not serve and praise God will all your heart and soul is a crime redolent with the stink of sloth; Heaven is not a tawdry reward, but a constant process of perfection as an instrument of the Divine. On Earth, the covenant was between the Church and the Lord; here the covenant of each is personal, with no intermediaries or diversions. God cares for all of you; your lot is to love God with all your mind and heart, and nothing else. Be dutiful and devoted, and strive to love God with such infinity as He loves you.
- Be not discomfited; be content. This is Heaven, this is perfection, and it is a flicker of the mortal sin of wrath to wish otherwise. If these doubts trouble you overmuch, remember that there is no actual sin in Heaven, only wavers of human hearts, for no-one save Lord God Himself is perfect. Remember always, however, that to accept that imperfection is to surrender to the darkness. You must always strive to be worthy of praising the Highest. If your doubts persist, come to us; we can make your mind forget these things.
- Above all else: WELCOME! We love you, and we will be together inextricably intertwined and knowing each other for all eternity!
Zapharaphariel, the Archangel of Information