A successful neurosurgeon, who has taught at Harvard Medical School and other universities, spent his life dismissing claims of heavenly out-of-body experiences and refuting such talk with scientific logic, until he himself had a near-death experience…
Read about it here.
According to the Bible, as calculated in the August 1972 issue of Applied Optics:
The temperature of Heaven can be rather accurately computed from available data. Our authority is the Bible: Isaiah 30:26 reads, Moreover the light of the Moon shall be as the light of the Sun and the light of the Sun shall be sevenfold, as the light of seven days. Thus Heaven receives from the Moon as much radiation as the Earth does from the Sun and in addition seven times seven (forty-nine) times as much as the Earth does from the Sun, or fifty times in all. The light we receive from the Moon is a ten-thousandth of the light we receive from the Sun, so we can ignore that.
With these data we can compute the temperature of Heaven: The radiation falling on Heaven will heat it to the point where the heat lost by radiation is just equal to the heat received by radiation. In other words, Heaven loses fifty times as much heat as the Earth by radiation. Using the Stefan-Boltzmann fourth-power law for radiation
where E is the absolute temperature of the Earth: 300K. This gives H as 798K absolute (525°C).
The exact temperature of Hell cannot be computed but it must be less than 444.6°C, the temperature at which brimstone or sulfur changes from a liquid to a gas. Revelations 21:8: But the fearful and unbelieving … shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone. A lake of molten brimstone means that its temperature must be below the boiling point, which is 444.6°C. (Above that point it would be a vapor, not a lake.)
It’s not clear to me whether Isaiah chapter 30 is describing Heaven or “Zion at Jerusalem” – fulltext of the chapter here.
“Ever since I’ve had cancer, I’ve been thinking about (God) more. And I find myself believing a bit more. Maybe it’s because I want to believe in an afterlife. That when you die, it doesn’t just all disappear,” Isaacson quoted Jobs as saying.
“Then he paused for a second and he said ‘yeah, but sometimes I think it’s just like an on-off switch. Click and you’re gone,” Isaacson said of Jobs. “He paused again, and he said: And that’s why I don’t like putting on-off switches on Apple devices.”
The Telegraph also has the report:
Steve Jobs’s hope that there might be an afterlife led him to avoid putting simple “on/off” switches on Apple’s best-known devices, his biographer has disclosed.
The late Apple chief executive said that despite being only “50/50″ about the existence of God, he found himself “believing a bit more” in life after death after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
In the past, Mr Jobs told his biographer, Walter Isaacson, “I saw my life as an arc and that it would end and compared to that, nothing mattered.
“You’re born alone, you’re going to die alone,” he said. “And does anything else really matter? I mean what is it exactly is it that you have to lose Steve? You know? There’s nothing.”
However Mr Jobs’s views softened after he became ill, Mr Isaacson told a CBS 60 Minutes programme marking the release of the book ‘Steve Jobs’ on Monday.
“Maybe it’s ‘cos I want to believe in an afterlife,” he recalled Mr Jobs saying. “That when you die, it doesn’t just all disappear. The wisdom you’ve accumulated. Somehow it lives on.
But sometimes I think it’s just like an on-off switch. Click and you’re gone.
“And that’s why I don’t like putting on-off switches on Apple devices.”
Many Apple products, such as the iPhone and the MacBook, were designed to be put on standby or “to sleep” when not in use, some feature a pulsating light to signal that they can quickly be revived…
Well Mr Jobs, there is an afterlife and you’re experiencing it as I type these words. Hopefully you discovered this Truth and the Source of that life, before you left this temporary earthly existence.
What Stephen Hawking doesn’t understand about heaven.
It’s in the Washington Post:
It’s depressing to see Stephen Hawking, one of the most brilliant minds in his field, trying to speak as an expert on things he sadly seems to know rather less about than many averagely intelligent Christians. Of course there are people who think of ‘heaven’ as a kind of pie-in-the-sky dream of an afterlife to make the thought of dying less awful. No doubt that’s a problem as old as the human race. But in the Bible ‘heaven’ isn’t ‘the place where people go when they die.’ In the Bible heaven is God’s space while earth (or, if you like, ‘the cosmos’ or ‘creation’) is our space. And the Bible makes it clear that the two overlap and interlock. For the ancient Jews, the place where this happened was the temple; for the Christians, the place where this happened was Jesus himself, and then, astonishingly, the persons of Christians because they, too, were ‘temples’ of God’s own spirit.
Hawking is working with a very low-grade and sub-biblical view of ‘going to heaven.’ Of course, if faced with the fully Christian two-stage view of what happens after death — first, a time ‘with Christ’ in ‘heaven’ or ‘paradise,’and then, when God renews the whole creation, bodily resurrection — he would no doubt dismiss that as incredible. But I wonder if he has ever even stopped to look properly, with his high-octane intellect, at the evidence for Jesus and the resurrection? I doubt it — most people in England haven’t. Until he has, his opinion about all this is worth about the same as mine on nuclear physics, i.e. not much.
As for the creation being self-caused: I wonder if he realises that he is simply repeating a version of ancient Epicureanism? i.e. the gods are out of the picture, a long way away, so the world/human life/etc has to get on under its own steam. This is hardly a ‘conclusion’ from his study of the evidence; it’s simply a well known worldview shared by most post-Enlightenment westerners. It is the worldview which enables secular democracy to consider itself an absolute, despite its numerous and rather obvious failings right now. The depressing thing is that Hawking doesn’t seem to realize this and so hasn’t even stopped to think that there might be quite sophisticated critiques of Epicureanism, ancient and modern, which he should work through. Not least the Christian one, which again focusses on Jesus.
Of course, the old set-up of the ‘science and religion’ debate was itself deeply influenced by this same worldview, and needs realigning. In fact, the ancient Christians would have been shocked to see their worldview labelled as a ‘religion.’ It was a philosophy, a politics, a culture, a vocation… the category of ‘religion’ is part of the problem, not part of the solution.