I think Heaven is an imaginary place created by humans to explain death to their children.
Logically, death is a natural event. Deaths happen everywhere, every time, and to everyone. There is nothing special about death (in general) – death will happen as long as life is also happening; but in personal, any death means a lot.
Therefore, how do we explain that to children and tell them that once someone dies, they become lifeless bodies and no one knows for sure what is happening to them afterwards? Is there any spiritual existence or consciousness that will process to go to another “life”? Or does it simply end right there, once the brain stem is dead?
We can always give explanation about how the body will decay and wither and shatter into tiny particles called atoms and they will create other stuff; but I guess it’s not a happy ending which a child expects after reading a lot of fairy tales, is it?
Thus, came the story about afterlife – how the dead does not perish at all; instead, they “live” somewhere, unseen, but safe and happy, and we can still meet them in the future (after we also die). Isn’t this a better (happy) ending? 🙂
In my hopeless romantic way of thinking, I do believe that Heaven is an imaginary place created by humans to explain death to their children; because it’s that hard to admit that “we don’t really know”.
Furthermore, the children in ourselves keep the image of Heaven as we grow up, because those unproven images are too beautiful to be replaced with the hard truth – that no dead person comes back to enlighten us and confirm the existence of afterlife.
So, maybe, in another words, Heaven is an imaginary place created by humans to explain death to themselves; because it’s that hard to admit that “we don’t know”.