When I was a child, my grandmother used to tell me stories about the animals she owned and loved, and hoped to see again in heaven. I would cry; having attended a Catholic school, we learned that animals had no souls and were, therefore, not admitted entrance into heaven. Grandma always knew what to say. She’d tell me, “God made them to be our companions. He would not have created something like our animals only to keep us apart in heaven.” As far as I’m concerned, Grandma had it right.
In her view, heaven would look like our favorite dream, and we’d be surrounded by those people (and animals) we loved best.
My heaven would look like Hogwarts. Ironic, I know, but I think God might understand.
I would love to live in a castle with moving staircases, surrounded by animals who understood me, and I, them. I’d be able to fly, I’d be able to appear and disappear at will. I could chat with those I love by speaking to their portraits, would revisit history in a Pensieve, and soar over forests on a winged creature from my imagination. I could turn myself into a cat and run through the halls with my beloved pet Nicodemus, who died two years ago, taking part of my heart with him when he closed his eyes for the last time.
If anyone knows what heaven really looks like, they aren’t talking, but I think Grandma had it right. For her, she said, heaven would be a farm, with her cows, and a garden. She’d be her young, beautiful self, before the ravages of time and cancer took away her pride and happiness. She’d be with the ones she loved most… including me, I hope, and my cat Nicky.
If there is such a thing as dreams coming true, that would be mine. Perhaps Grandma’s heaven and mine could be next door neighbors, and she could visit with her beloved pets, share coffee with me in the Hufflepuff common room, and take a stroll through the greenhouse.
Heaven would look like Hogwarts.