Why do people want to go to heaven?
I sometimes ask religious people if they want to go to heaven. The answer is almost always, yes. But then I ask, what is it like in heaven and what will you do there? Do you sit around on a cloud and play the harp? Spend your time praying? Bask in the euphoria? Most people don’t have a concrete answer to that question.
The understanding given to me and my godsiblings by our spiritual master, Srila Prabhupada, is that we shouldn’t strive to go to heaven, but rather we should act in such a way the we develop genuine love for God in the here and now. That way it isn’t like we’re performing austerities in expectation of a nebulous reward, but rather we can perceive the benefits of experiencing the most important relationship we could possibly cultivate.
How does a person develop love for God? Well that answer could and has filled volumes of books. But one of the easiest ways to develop love for him is by calling to him by His personal Name. It is like a child calling for his Mother. In this age the chanting/mantra meditation of the Maha Mantra is recommended:
hare krsna hare krsna
krsna krsna hare hare
hare rama hare rama
rama rama hare hare