Home Fish Science Do Fish Go to Heaven? (Here’s why they might!)

Do Fish Go to Heaven? (Here’s why they might!)

by gvald

On some subjects, it is so much more comfortable to be an atheist. Wondering how many angels are capable of dancing on the head of a pin, or worse, whether Medor or Felix will be waiting for us in the afterlife after they have given up the ghost, are just idle thoughts, pointless questions. But for those who believe that the afterlife exists and have developed a strong attachment to its fish, the question can be of glaring importance.


So, is it possible? To give a good answer, one could say that it depends. On religion, of course. A Northern American who believes in the prairies of the Great Manitou will know that they are populated by the spirits of our fish brothers. A Hindu or a Buddhist (for whom the human soul can very well be found in an animal body) will not deny the post-mortem survival of these.


Do fish go to heaven?

Many people wonder if they will be reunited with their four-legged companions in eternal life. Can animals go to heaven?


Fish owners tend to consider their pets as members of their family. This is expressed, for example, by the increasing number of individuals who, since World War II, have decided to add their family name to the tombstone of the deceased pet.


From a religious perspective, Christianity traditionally holds that animals do not have an afterlife. Nevertheless, Pope John Paul II asserted in 1990 that animals have souls and are as close to God as human beings. In 2014, Pope Francis did not rule out the possibility of animals (and fish) entering heaven after death.


Can you find your fish in heaven?

The question remains open: is there a possible afterlife for fish? The Bible does not settle this question, but it does not oppose the idea either. Perhaps, endowed with a form of consciousness, animals do indeed reach a form of survival after death. This is a real possibility.


Just as we would find it difficult to live in communion with God, for eternity, without the people we have loved, why should this not also be the case for fish? Especially when we think of the attachment of some animals to their master. There is a kind of capacity for love in these living beings…


Is there an afterlife for fish?

In Christianity, this question has never really been decided. In the Bible, there is not much mention of fish, unlike in other religions. On the other hand, St. Paul writes that the whole creation is waiting for the revelation of the sons of God. In the New Testament, we find the idea that, at the end of history, the universe as we know it today will not simply disappear, but it will be transfigured, transformed from within. One could say that it will be entirely spiritualized.


This question makes sense: will the fish also be part of this new creation? Until now, however, this hypothesis has hardly been developed by Christian theologians.


In his encyclical Laudato Si (2015), Pope Francis explains that, for centuries, animals (and fish) have been considered practically as objects, which only had meaning in relation to human use, but that fish must also be considered to exist for themselves. This idea is quite new. It had never really been developed in the Christian tradition, although it is not absent from it.

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