The Beatific Vision sounds worrying

I admit I don’t know as much as I could about the church’s teaching on Heaven, however what I have heard from people on these forums sounds a bit worrying. The main thing I’ve heard is the beatific vision - the idea that in heaven we’ll be able to communicate with God directly and will spend eternity worshipping him and being unimaginably happy as a result.

“What’s the problem with this?”, you might be asking. Well the problem is that it sounds similar to a drug; something that gives you a blissful feeling but prevents you from thinking about anything else. It’s a bit worrying that God would give humans the ability to think and to reason, only to yank it away afterwards. Why give it to us at all then?

I know my complaints might sound silly, or even outright ungrateful, but please be patient with me.

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Angels are already there. I’ve never heard that they lack reason. In fact, I. Believe the church Teaches that their intelligence is almost without limit


I should imagine that the Beatific Vision would be very highly intellectual and cognitive. Animals cannot appreciate great art or great music, nor could they appreciate the vision of God.


I would think that our intelligence and understanding would actually be enhanced, as we would need that to even begin to be around and comprehend God.

I have also never heard any approved visionary or person who returned from an NDE say it was like being on drugs or being robbed of reason and intelligence.


The Bible tells us that God will create a “new heavens and new earth”. If heaven includes a physical reality in eternity, then it doesn’t make much sense that our experience of God will make us unable to experience it.

Rather, I see the “beatific vision” like the experience of being heads-over-heels in love: everywhere you turn, and everything you do, your beloved is on your mind and fills you with joy. More awesomely, the fact that you’re in love means that everything is intensified in joy – each experience you have is better, simply because of the one you love. You don’t stop doing other things… but all the things you do are imbued with the love that you’re experiencing.

I think that’s what the Beatific Vision will be like. We’ll always be cognizant of God and the shared love of heaven… but, we won’t be prevented from thinking and experiencing other good things!

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First of all, the saints are not going to be in heaven forever; only until the end of time. Then comes the resurrection of the dead and the judgment of everybody, followed by the new life eternal for all the blessed.

Second, there’s nothing deadening about an experience of the presence of God.

Look, we were designed to be able to “walk with God” and know Him well, as a child knows her father. Most of the time, most of us are cut off from Him by sin and other problems. So we really aren’t operating on all cylinders.

Only in God can we truly be our full selves. And we don’t yet know what we are really capable of!

Have you ever seen a malnourished dog come to life as he gets used to eating good food and loving treatment? His eyes start to sparkle. He gains strength and speed. He becomes confident and happy. He becomes something much greater than he had known he could be – his own healthy self.

The beatific vision is essentially an act of the intellect. As the phrase ‘beatific vision’ indicates, it is a vision. But not a vision of the bodily eyes for God cannot be seen with the bodily eyes as God is a spirit. In the beatific vision, the essence of God is known and seen with the ‘eyes’ of the intellect. Accordingly and contrary to what you think, God gave us an intellect by which we think and reason so that we might be able to behold him someday face to face in the beatific vision in heaven. Without the intellect, there is no beatific vision. It is by the power of the intellect that God gave us that we are able to know and understand things. For example, in this life we do not see God but we can have knowledge of him through faith which is an act of the intellect.


Thanks, I never considered that exactly as you expressed it.

Here’s the Deal:smile:

In the entire Universe of BILLIONS of stars, planets & galaxies, only ONE thing; planet earth can be proven to support the life forms we are aware of

On Planet Earth with it many MILLIONS of living things; only ONE thing is rational: humanity

Gen 1:26-27 teaches us the WE alone are Created in GODS very image. Then John 4:23-24 teaches us the 'GOD IS A SPIRIT" and is to worshiped as such

So we are mortal and very humanity with body and blood; while GOD is immortal and a SPIRIT; so then just HOW do we emulate GOD?

The answer is that at conception GOD Gifts every human soul with a mind, intellect and freewill.

Each of these Gifts like GOD are a Spiritual reality; that God attaches to the human Soul at the instant of conception. Like God these attributes are Spiritual and Immortal; never die.

So WHY then does God make US in HIS Image [what does He expect in return?]

Isa. 43:7 & 21 “Everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.” … the people whom I formed for myself that THEY MIGHT declare my praise.

THIS TEACHES US THE life IS A GOD TEST; which many more fail than pass.; which gets to your point. NO-ONE gets to heaven by accident; If we get there it is because suffered and worked to do so.

When We get to heaven we will recognize others that we knew here on earth; BUT we will be so GRATEFUL to God and in such AWE of His Presence that We freely choose to thank and Worship the Divine Presence; that We will want to do nothing else. What we think while on earth is with logic and emotions; in heaven we will be overcome literally with what has been granted us and realize that what has been granted to us through HIS Grace, is truly worthy of eternal praise.

God Bless you,

You are not alone in failing to understand what heaven and the beatific vision will be:

But as it is written: “What eye has not seen, and ear has not heard, and what has not entered the human heart, what God has prepared for those who love him,” this God has revealed to us through the Spirit.For the Spirit scrutinizes everything, even the depths of God.
I Corinthians 2:9-10

We were created in God’s image in that we were made so that we could know, love, and serve God. That requires an intellectual power beyond what we have on earth. We now have only small hints about what that will be like. No material sense of vision could comprehend a pure spirit.

Paul also gave us a few tiny hints of what heaven would be like:

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
Philippians 4:8

No, it’s more like a continuous party or festival.There is no need to think about anything because all your earthly duties and problems are gone. Heaven will never seem old to you, it will be like a brand new spring day for all eternity.

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I totally understand where you’re coming from. That’s an excellent question that more people should bring up! Often we hear about the multitude of saints standing before God unceasingly praising him. It makes you wonder if that’s all people do in Heaven. Do you just stand around in robes inflating God’s ego and acting like zombies? Are we gonna be like moths flittering around mindlessly enthralled by God to the point of losing our minds? Well, many saints have written accounts of Heaven and thankfully none of those scenarios are true. Whether, it’s the dreams of St. Don Bosco or St. Faustina or countless others, there is still individuality in Heaven. You’re not assimilated like the Borg! You’re gonna be happy to praise God! But he’s gonna be happy you’re there too :grin:

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There actually is not anything better we can do than to spend eternity sharing the love of God, but we will not realize that until we actually do it in heaven. At every mass the whole Church comes together to worship the Father through His Risen Son by the grace of the Holy Spirit. The whole Church includes the souls in heaven and at every mass we ask all the saints and angels to join us. In a mysterious way they are present with us, but we are not able to fully understand it yet.

Heaven will be even better than when the Cubs won the World Series last year. I actually missed the first three innings of game 7 because I was at choir practice and I thought I could help them more in church than at home. The man next to me was a Cleveland fan, so I had to balance out whatever he was doing. When the Cubs leadoff man homered to start the game, I thought he was going to throw his phone away.

You have it backwards. Drugs have the false promise of a god-like experience. The Beatific Vision is not a “feeling” or an “emotion.” It is the perfection of existence.

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