Good-Souls : Bad-Souls

I thought of putting this in GQ, but figured because of its spiritual context, it might do better here. My question is a quick one, so I’m not to sure if it merits a great debate. Here it is anyway:

What do you think the ratio of good souls to bad souls is? That is to say, how many sould per 100 do you think go to Heaven? To Hell? Purgatory?

This question I’ve proposed here basically applies to only those who believe in a heavenly afterlife. So don’t answer if you think otherwise. I ask because I have an idea for another, better great debate, but I must first find the general concensus regarding this question.

No replies!? Is this thread really that worthless? The Emperor or King? thread was hardly a great debate, but at least it got one reply!

I’m dissapointed :frowning:

you posted at 10:14pm and gave it a little more than an hour. how many people post that late at all?

i’m into reincarnation not heaven/hell so i pretty much regard earth as PLANET HELL. looking at the condition most people on the planet are in most would have to say I’M A BAD SOUL.

it’s my karma and i’ll cry if i want to, cry if i want to, cry if i want to. you would cry too if it happened to you.

don’t you listen to leslie gore records?

Dal Timgar

Actually, dal_timgar, I posted at 11pm where I live. I guess I shouldn’t have expected much when posting so late.

So instead of posting a whole new thread regarding the same topic, I’m going to give this one a little bump and hope it will attract a few replies.

How can we know? Wouldn’t it depend on the criteria used by God? According to whose religion? According to many (or all, I’m not sure) Christians, those who are not Christian cannot go to Heaven, but according to Jews, righteous non-Jews certainly go to Heaven; I’m not sure about other faiths’ assessment of who goes where. This obviously affects the numbers.
Then, of course, I think that most people probably believe that they and the people with whom they hang out are basically good and non-Hell destined. This no doubt would skew people’s assessment of things even if we had a better idea of the general criteria for admission to the different divisions.
This is completely unanswerable, which is probably why nobody’s answered.

One reason why no one has answered as yet may be because any such ratio would be pure speculation. What the hey, let’s have a bash anyway.

According to this site:

…approximately 2 billion (33%) of the current world population considers itself Christian.

Assuming that the above figure is accurate, and that God only accepts ‘good’ Christians into Heaven, that means that no more than 33% of all souls currently on Earth will make it into Heaven. Of course, this grossly oversimplifies the situation. Among the many considerations that may skew the results are:

  1. The relative proportion of Christians to other religions (or no religion) has varied over time. Prior to the death of Jesus, there were no Christians at all. It would appear that Jews were allowed into Heaven prior to the advent of Christ, but there seems to be some earthly disagreement as to whether this is still the case.

  2. There are three major branches of Christianity, and literally hundreds of sub-branches. Unfortunately, it is not clear whether only one, some, or all of these different bodies have been formally approved by God, and thus the number of “Christian” souls which may actually gain Heaven is open to debate.

  3. According to, about 20% of all Christians are conservative evangelicals, many of whom believe that only like-minded Evangelicals are Christians at all. Thus the range of souls saved from the current population may range from approx. 400 million (all Evangelicals) downward to only the members of a specific evangelical congregation in, say, Lubbock, Texas.

  4. Undoubtedly, some individuals who consider themselves to be Christians are not seen as such by God, and there seems to be no data on the ratio of ‘true’ to ‘false’ Christians, outside of considerations such as Evangelicals vs. excluded groups, as described above.

  5. It remains an open question whether any non-Christians may gain access to heaven. Particularly problematic are:
    a) persons to young to understand Christianity or to have been knowingly baptized
    b) the mentally retarded
    c) the mentally ill
    d) persons who have never heard of Christianity.

I’m sure one can see that the many variables involved make it rather difficult to arrive at an accurate figure for souls saved vs. souls lost.

Hope this was of some use. :smiley:

It depends who you ask.

Most Christians believe in the sacrament of reconciliation. If we repent, we get into heaven.
So, a great majority go to heaven, since most of us repent, and God loves us all. Of course, maybe this requires us to repent sincerely… If that’s the case, a few more go to hell, and a whole lot spend time in purgatory.

On the other hand what if:
“If you’ve been good, you go to heaven; If you’ve been bad, you go to hell.”
If that holds true, anyone who’s sinned goes to hell. That means most everybody, so maybe the rules get relaxed a bit. People who burned anthills as a kid and tried vodka in their teens get in, but people who assault or murder go to hell. If that’s the case, then one of two cases is true:

  1. The judging is by God’s standards. So God relaxes the rules as he sees fit, and some get in. Either we assume that we can’t understand God’s plan (that line again) and we can’t know the ratio, or we assume that God relaxes the rules ‘just a bit’ and so only the top 2-10% get in

  2. The judging is by familiar human standards. (this is easier for most people to relate to, and seems to be the view of most of the “righteous” people I’ve met). So, the people who’ve been good (like ME, say the righteous) get in, and anybody significantly worse than ME are excluded. So, figure out where you are on the percentile scale of GOODNESS, lower that number a little bit and THAT’S the percentage of people who get into heaven.

As a third possibility, perhaps admission to heaven is based not on one’s actions or repentance, but on the purity of the spirit (soul, heart, katra, etc.). After all, we all make mistakes, but as long as I’m a basically good person, I’ll get in (, right?). The answer to this scenario depends on how much hope you have for yourself and for the whole of humanity. Are people basically good, with some true gems and a few real villains trown in? Or are we more fifty-fifty in our distribution… with continuous variation of Goodness/Badness from Goofus to Gallant? Or perhaps we’re all just refined versions of the characters of Lord Of The Flies? And again, are these by humanity’s standards, God’s hard or relaxed criteria, the cosmically TRUE right and wrong, our personal values? Pick what you believe, and the answer becomes obvious (+/- 15%).

Perhaps, rather than worry about who gets into heeaven, we should take the opposite approach; perhaps hell is reserved for the truly evil and unrepentant, and everyone else gets into heaven (perhaps with a layover in purgatory).

If so, then only the small percentage of truly evil people (and defining that is entirely another argument) go to hell. The rest can be saved, and if we strive to be ‘good’, so can we.

I imagine that most people hold a belief (from the above, or else) that dovetails with their own lifestyle. For example, a person of great purity of heart can afford to believe in strict standards of admission, while others of perhaps a shadier nature of character (if such a scale exists) may believe that the sandards have been relaxed. It at first sounds unreasonable, but is based on a simple idea; that everyone (of this sort of faith) wants to get into heaven, and believes they can. If someone had no confidence in their ability to enter paradise, what sort of depression would they find themselves in? Most people of stable psychology, then, believe they can enter heaven (if they believe that heaven exists). This is the sort of hope that many find comforting, and reassuring. It is also a way that at least some feel is useful in alleviating basic loneliness… for we’ll all (even ME) be together in the end (both personal loneliness and that of the human race is implied here… but again, that’s another argument).

So, how many of us will get into heaven? It depends who you ask. Common answers:
“Everyone who turns to God”
“ME, and anyone better than or slightly worse than ME”
“All but the truly evil”
“Those pure in spirit, if not clean of sin”

Of course, this only applies to the popular idea of heaven. Those of non-christian faith or of different belief systems than the few mentioned above will have different viewpoints. And should heaven itself not exist, the argument is moot.

Yes, according to Sylvia Brown. I won’t comment on my personal viewpoint concerning her take on this, but I’ll present her view on this topic. It might be of interest to some of you and it’ll add to the discussion.

Sylvia states that there are “white”, “gray” and black spirits. The “white” spirit is considered the more pure loving spirits who have not turned away from God; “gray” spirits are those who flip flop but could evolve to a “white” spirit (though many never do), and “black” spirits are those who seek only their own personal gain and do not have a conscious, experience remorse, etc. Hitler is a fine example of the latter.

Her belief is that all spirits reincarnate, however, only the white spirits experience Heaven between lives. Gray and black spirits immediately reincarnate and do not “rest” between lives.

For those who regard earth as planet hell, Sylvia would agree with you to a point. She believes that at any given time the earth is more populated with gray and black spirits than white spirits due to the fact that the first two immediately reincarnate following “death” and white spirits choose whether or not to return to earth and how many times they will do so in their endeavor in seeking perfection. According to Sylvia, the level a white spirit seeks to obtain is also their choice.

According to Sylvia (and others) early Christianity (particularily the Essenes) held the belief of reincarnation of the spirit. Most references to this was removed during the “standardization” of Christianity, but she states that a few remnants remain in the Bible.

I’ll be absent for the next few days to attend my dad’s funeral, but I’ll check back when I return.

The Bible says that the number of souls to be taken in the Rapture is 144,000. In the movie “Left Behind” that we have debated so thoroughly on these boards, the number seems to have been bumped up 144,000,000 for plot convenience. If the number actually is 144,000, this would seem to pose a problem for the vast majority of Christians if the End Times are right around the corner, which is what many people seem to believe.