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Main Page From Hell to Heaven RBLUM-9 Chapter

From Hell to Heaven

Chapter 9 - All worldly wisdom is vanity. Jesus impresses faith upon His disciples.

1. He studies the remaining sheen, not knowing what to make of it. Getting his bearings back after a while, he once again ruminates more soberly about this phenomenon, saying to himself:

2. “In the end, it is a thunderstorm which begins to clear somewhat after the third lightning. Only one thing starts to puzzle me – how I seem to hover like a bird in free air, without any solid foundation. Previously, this could have been taken as a deception of feelings; but now it is no deception, but full reality.

3. “It is getting through to me that physically, I have indeed died, as it cannot be expected that a heavy body can maintain itself in free air or ether for that long; yet no objects other than myself can be detected, either below or above me. Wherefore I must be far from any cosmic body – hmm – it is intriguing!

4. “Oh Hegel, Strauss and Ronge; here your wisdom suffers shipwreck. Where is your general world-soul, to which man goes over after decomposition of the body? Where is the God emerging within man, and where his self-consciousness? I died, yet am here in the most impotent solitude imaginable. No trace here of an emerging Deity, nor the going over of my being into some general world-soul.

5. “Oh you conceited, humanitarian, worldly-wise ones! You yourselves have indeed never had the slightest notion. In short, you betrayed me and shall betray many more. But all is forgiven you, as you too are Germans! Had you known more relevant truth, you are sure not to have withheld it from your followers! But since you are not capable of it, give what you have, and it shall be honestly brokered.

6. “Of course, your honesty is of no benefit to anyone here, but this basically suffices to keep mankind within a certain material order in the world. As for the often disputed life after death, this needs no regulations here; for what obligations could be attaching to me? Surely none beside those of a people in the air driven by the winds. Even if I now had the wisdom of Solomon and the strength of a Goliath – to what end?

7. “Wherefore it would be better to die with the darkest Roman superstition, where one lays down the body with the blind belief in the soul’s continuing life, for better or for worse. Better than expecting to love life eternally with the demise of the body, as accords with Rongean Puritanism: and therewith also fear death exceedingly. Heavens! Better to languish in this creatureless emptiness than to go through such fear of death again!

8. “Wherefore you teachers – teach faith to your disciples! They shall be happier in dying, than I with all my intellectual powers. Whence it becomes clear to me why the great Master always impressed faith upon His disciples!”

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