"Can you get to heaven from the potty?"

"Can you get to heaven from the potty?"
--Quote from my son Aidan after we flushed a dead pet fish down the toilet.

Last night my wife reminded me of the question Aidan asked a few years back. As I pondered the question I thought to myself, "You know, that question just summarized my last post in eight words." Not bad, not bad at all.

Given the profundity of the question "Can you get to heaven from the potty?", and in response to some of your comments, I'm going to be saying with the Malthusian theme for at least three more posts and have now designated the last post as a "Part 1".

Hopefully, by the end, we'll have an answer to Aidan question.

This entry was posted by Richard Beck. Bookmark the permalink.

7 thoughts on “"Can you get to heaven from the potty?"”

  1. What a wonderful quote! And I'm glad to know the series will continue; since it will, another question: Have you read Douglas John Adams' account of the fall in his God and Human Suffering? Your comment in the last post about finding Malthus in Eden reminded me of his account of the pre-fall world, wherein he describes four different "anxieties" inherent to any kind of comprehensible human existence. At the very least, he posits interesting ideas that take seriously the notion of pre- and post-fall, as well as Christ and eschaton.

  2. It's an extension of the passage, but sure an extension very much in the spirit of Psalm 139: 7-10, to say: Even if I am flushed down the potty, thou art there also.

  3. Hi Brad,
    No, I've not God and Human Suffering. Thank you for pointing me to do. The problem of suffering is something I'm very interested in and I love to find good ideas on the subject.

    I agree. It also reminded me of something I read about Kant who supposedly wrote that there are four common theological pictures of the world: A cheap inn, a prison, a madhouse, or a latrine.

  4. Richard,

    Kant may have had in mind the (apocryphal?) story about Luther's aha! recognition of grace while sitting in the privy. That, for him, with his self-confessed constipation, was a painful movement from the scatological to the eschatological.

    Augustine somewhere in one of his discussions of will (I don't think in the Confessions) tells about a man who could fart at will. That's will in lower case. Aidan would probably be amazed by that guy.


    George C.

  5. And, of course, I wrote the wrong name. It's Douglas John HALL, not Adams. For a moment I was confusing theologians and founding fathers. Won't happen again.

  6. George,
    Yes, Aidan would love that.

    Also, if I ever write a book I want to borrow from you an title it: From the Scatological to the Eschatological

    No worries. I Googled the title and found it easily at Amazon.

  7. Richard,

    Feel free to use it with attribution. I used that title in graduate school for a critical review of Erik Erikson's psychobiography of Martin Luther. The professor said the content was so-so but gave me an A+ for title creativity!

    No doubt your book will be a book about the relationship between potty humor and preacher jokes.


    George C.

Leave a Reply