afterlife (Baha'i)

Bahá'ís believe in an afterlife in which the soul is separated from the body. At death, according to the Bahá'í faith, the soul begins a spiritual journey towards God through many planes of existence.

Progress on this journey towards God is likened to the idea of "heaven." If the soul fails to develop, one remains distant from God. This condition of remoteness from God can in some sense be understood as "hell."

Thus Bahá'ís do not regard heaven and hell as literal places but as different states of being during one's spiritual journey toward or away from God.

Bahá'ís understand the spiritual world to be a timeless and placeless extension of our own universe--and not some physically remote or removed place.

But beyond this, the exact nature of the afterlife remains a mystery. Bahá'u'lláh wrote, "The nature of the soul after death can never be described."