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Likewise, if you say it to someone and they tell you they'd rather you didn't, then respect their wishes the next time you encounter that individual. Megan Manson of Patheos says ,. If your tradition requires it, then feel free to incorporate it in ways that feel natural and comfortable and appropriate. The choice to use "Blessed Be," or to not use it at all, is entirely up to you.

Share Flipboard Email. Patti Wigington is a pagan author, educator, and licensed clergy. If I'm writing an email that's coven related, I usually sign off with blessed be, or just BB, because everyone understands the usage.

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What I don't do, though, is use it when I'm talking to my grandma, my co-workers, or the cashier at the Piggly Wiggly. Be with this legislative body and guide them to seek justice, equity and compassion in the work that is before them today. Blessed Be, Aho, and Amen. This seems to fit Paganism very well; with such a variety of deities, and indeed with some forms of Paganism and witchcraft having no deities at all, wishing blessings upon another without reference to where those blessings are coming from would be appropriate for any Pagan, no matter what their individual creed.

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By using Learn Religions, you accept our. Sidrat al-Muntaha , a large enigmatic Lote tree, marks the end of the seventh heaven and the utmost extremity for all of God's creatures and heavenly knowledge. One interpretation of "heavens" is that all the stars and galaxies including the Milky Way are all part of the "first heaven", and "beyond that six still bigger worlds are there," which have yet to be discovered by scientists. According to Shi'ite sources, Ali mentioned the names of the seven heavens as below: [63].

Regarding Eden or paradise the Quran says, "The parable of the Garden which the righteous are promised: Beneath it flow rivers; perpetual is the fruits thereof and the shade therein. Such is the end of the righteous; and the end of the unbelievers is the Hellfire. Children automatically go to paradise when they die, regardless of the religion of their parents. Paradise is described primarily in physical terms as a place where every wish is immediately fulfilled when asked. Islamic texts describe immortal life in Jannah as happy, without negative emotions.

Those who dwell in Jannah are said to wear costly apparel, partake in exquisite banquets, and recline on couches inlaid with gold or precious stones. Inhabitants will rejoice in the company of their parents, spouses, and children. In Islam if one's good deeds outweigh one's sins then one may gain entrance to paradise. Conversely, if one's sins outweigh their good deeds they are sent to hell.

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The more good deeds one has performed the higher the level of Jannah one is directed to. In the Hadiths , these are the different regions in paradise. According to the Ahmadiyya view, much of the imagery presented in the Quran regarding heaven, but also hell, is in fact metaphorical. They propound the verse which describes, according to them how the life to come after death is very different from the life here on earth. The Quran says: "From bringing in your place others like you, and from developing you into a form which at present you know not.

On earth, if a person leads a righteous life and submits to the will of God, his or her tastes become attuned to enjoying spiritual pleasures as opposed to carnal desires. With this, an "embryonic soul" begins to take shape. Different tastes are said to be born which a person given to carnal passions finds no enjoyment. For example, sacrifice of one's own's rights over that of other's becomes enjoyable, or that forgiveness becomes second nature. In such a state a person finds contentment and Peace at heart and at this stage, according to Ahmadiyya beliefs, it can be said that a soul within the soul has begun to take shape.

He explains: "The world beyond is as different from this world as this world is different from that of the child while still in the womb of its mother. Each soul can continue to progress in the afterlife, but the soul's development is not entirely dependent on its own conscious efforts, the nature of which we are not aware, but also augmented by the grace of God, the prayers of others, and good deeds performed by others on Earth in the name of that person. In the native Chinese Confucian traditions, heaven Tian is an important concept, where the ancestors reside and from which emperors drew their mandate to rule in their dynastic propaganda, for example.

Heaven is a key concept in Chinese mythology, philosophies and religions, and is on one end of the spectrum a synonym of Shangdi "Supreme Deity" and on the other naturalistic end, a synonym for nature and the sky. After their conquest of the Shang Dynasty in BC, the Zhou people considered their supreme deity Tian to be identical with the Shang supreme deity Shangdi. Heaven blesses those who please it and sends calamities upon those who offend it. Other philosophers born around the time of Confucius such as Mozi took an even more theistic view of heaven, believing that heaven is the divine ruler, just as the Son of Heaven the King of Zhou is the earthly ruler.

Mozi believed that spirits and minor gods exist, but their function is merely to carry out the will of heaven, watching for evil-doers and punishing them. Thus they function as angels of heaven and do not detract from its monotheistic government of the world. Mozi, Will of Heaven , Chapter 27, Paragraph 6, ca. Mozi criticized the Confucians of his own time for not following the teachings of Confucius. By the time of the later Han Dynasty , however, under the influence of Xunzi , the Chinese concept of heaven and Confucianism itself had become mostly naturalistic, though some Confucians argued that heaven was where ancestors reside.

Worship of heaven in China continued with the erection of shrines, the last and greatest being the Temple of Heaven in Beijing, and the offering of prayers.

The ruler of China in every Chinese dynasty would perform annual sacrificial rituals to heaven, usually by slaughtering two healthy bulls as a sacrifice. In Buddhism there are several heavens, all of which are still part of samsara illusionary reality. Those who accumulate good karma may be reborn [72] in one of them.

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However, their stay in heaven is not eternal—eventually they will use up their good karma and will undergo rebirth into another realm, as a human, animal or other being. Because heaven is temporary and part of samsara , Buddhists focus more on escaping the cycle of rebirth and reaching enlightenment nirvana. Nirvana is not a heaven but a mental state. According to Buddhist cosmology the universe is impermanent and beings transmigrate through a number of existential "planes" in which this human world is only one "realm" or "path".

According to Jan Chozen Bays in her book, Jizo: Guardian of Children, Travelers, and Other Voyagers , the realm of the asura is a later refinement of the heavenly realm and was inserted between the human realm and the heavens. In the Mahayana world view, there are also pure lands which lie outside this continuum and are created by the Buddhas upon attaining enlightenment.

Rebirth in the pure land of Amitabha is seen as an assurance of Buddhahood, for once reborn there, beings do not fall back into cyclical existence unless they choose to do so to save other beings, the goal of Buddhism being the obtainment of enlightenment and freeing oneself and others from the birth—death cycle. The Tibetan word Bardo means literally " intermediate state ". The heaven of devas "with power over others' creations".

These devas do not create pleasing forms that they desire for themselves, but their desires are fulfilled by the acts of other devas who wish for their favor. The world of devas "delighting in their creations". The devas of this world are capable of making any appearance to please themselves. The world of the "joyful" devas. This world is best known for being the world in which a Bodhisattva lives before being reborn in the world of humans.


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The ruler of this heaven is Indra or Shakra, and the realm is also called Trayatrimia. Ajita the Licchavi army general was reborn here. Any Buddhist reborn in this realm can outshine any of the previously dwelling denizens because of the extra merit acquired for following the Buddha's teachings.

The heaven "of the Four Great Kings". Ou Yi Zhixu [74] explains that the Shurangama sutra only emphasizes avoidance of deviant sexual desire, but one would naturally need to abide by the 10 good conducts to be born in these heavens. Attaining heaven is not the final pursuit in Hinduism as heaven itself is ephemeral and related to physical body. Only being tied by the bhoot-tatvas, heaven cannot be perfect either and is just another name for pleasurable and mundane material life.

According to Hindu cosmology , above the earthly plane, are other planes: 1 Bhuva Loka , 2 Swarga Loka, meaning Good Kingdom, is the general name for heaven in Hinduism, a heavenly paradise of pleasure, where most of the Hindu Devatas Deva reside along with the king of Devas, Indra, and beatified mortals. Since heavenly abodes are also tied to the cycle of birth and death, any dweller of heaven or hell will again be recycled to a different plane and in a different form per the karma and "maya" i.

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This cycle is broken only by self-realization by the Jivatma. This self-realization is Moksha Turiya, Kaivalya. The concept of moksha is unique to Hinduism and is unparalleled. Moksha stands for liberation from the cycle of birth and death and final communion with Brahman. With moksha, a liberated soul attains the stature and oneness with Brahman or Paramatma. Different schools such as Vedanta, Mimansa, Sankhya, Nyaya, Vaisheshika, and Yoga offer subtle differences in the concept of Brahman, obvious Universe, its genesis and regular destruction, Jivatma, Nature Prakriti and also the right way in attaining perfect bliss or moksha.

In the Vaishnava traditions the highest heaven is Vaikuntha , which exists above the six heavenly lokas and outside of the mahat- tattva or mundane world. It's where eternally liberated souls who have attained moksha reside in eternal sublime beauty with Lakshmi and Narayana a manifestation of Vishnu. However, the Nasadiya Sukta questions the omniscience of this overseer.

The shape of the Universe as described in Jainism is shown alongside. Unlike the current convention of using North direction as the top of map, this uses South as the top.