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Home > SomeJokes Specials > Email Gems > A Parable of Heaven and Hell

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Rated: 8.00/10 | Votes: 5 | Views: 446 |Submitted: 05/19/2004


There was a rabbi who wanted to see both heaven and hell. And God gave way to his pleading.

The rabbi found himself before a door that bore no name. He trembled as he saw it open before him into a room where all was prepared for a feast. There was a table, and at it's center a great dish of steaming food. The smell and aroma inflamed the appetite.

Diners sat around the table with great spoons in their hands, yet they were shrieking with hunger in that terrible place. They tried to feed themselves, and gave up, cursing God. For the spoons God had provided were so long that they could not reach their faces and get the food to their tongues. So they starved because of these spoons, while the dish of plenty lay amongst them. The rabbi knew their shriekings were the cries of hell, and as knowledge came, the door closed before him.

He shut his eyes in prayer, and begged God to take him away from that terrible place. When he opened them again, he despaired, for the same door stood before him, the door that bore no name. Again it opened, and it gave onto the same room. Nothing had changed and he was about to cry out in horror. There was the table, and at it's center the steaming bowl, and around it were the same people, and in their hands the same spoons.

Yet the shrieking had gone and the cries and curses had turned to blessings. And nothing had changed, yet everything. For with the same long spoons they reached to each other's faces, and fed each other's mouths. And they gave thanks to God.

And as the rabbi heard the blessings, the door closed. He bent down, and he too blessed God, who had shown him the nature of heaven and hell, and the chasm - a hairsbreadth wide - that divides them.


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