It also serves as the place where the souls of the just retire to when they pass away, expending the rest of eternity in paradise. According to the Archangel Micheal, a certain number of good deeds must be done for a soul to enter Heaven regardless of how good the soul is, but a soul from inside Heaven can open its gates to vouch for a soul with insufficient good deeds. Souls that have committed unnatural acts can also be allowed to enter Heaven if they proven themselves as just. Souls in Heaven or good souls rejected by Heaven can also be reincarnated to return to Earth to accumulate good deeds or to be reborn again without memories of their past lives.However, those who have lived a life of sin, but were nonetheless good of heart, may find themselves wandering the Limbo realm of Purgatory.
Heaven seems to be structured in seven levels; in the Third Heaven, there is a Death-Angel that can grant mortality to anyone who wishes to leave the Silver City to reside in the mortal realm, in the Fifth Heaven is the foundry where Zauriel's sword was cast, and in the Seventh and highest Heaven was believed to be the throne of The Presence.
If a Guardian Angel decides to renounce his duties in Heaven to defend humanity on Earth, said Angel needs to make such request in front of the four King-Angels of the Pax Dei, a request that has to be approved for the Angel to carry on his desire.
When the traitor of the Light, Lord Asmodel, attempted a rebellion against The Presence and take over Heaven, he took an army of Demons granted by Neron to wage war against the celestial kingdom, a war that was short lived as the forces of Heaven repelled their aggressors thanks to their master who banished Asmodel to forever be punished in the pit of Hell.
Day of Judgment
The fallen Asmodel found himself making a deal with the treacherous Etrigan in order to gain the power of the Spectre, putting all of creation in jeopardy. In order to combat him, the Justice League sent a group led by Zauriel to Heaven in order to retrieve the soul of Jim Corrigan to control the Spectre, a mission almost failed, since Corrigan's soul was incapable of controlling the Spectre anymore, but it wasn't in vain, since they could still find a strong soul in the lesser realm of Purgatory. It was the soul of Hal Jordan who succeeded in exorcising Asmodel and putting the power of the Spectre in check, with Heaven creating a new structure as prison for the rogue King-Angel at the behest of The Presence.
World War Three
When the war machine Mageddon awoke from its slumber, the Heavenly Hosts began to gather in front of The Presence to design the architecture of a new universe in the event of the current universe's destruction.
It wasn't after Zauriel sacrificed his flesh to return to Heaven when he started to supplicate the Hosts for their aid in mankind's war against Mageddon. Zauriel almost failed to appeal to his Angel brethren, but his heart managed to get through them and win their support to save humanity.
Points of Interest
- The Pearly Gates: Its gates are guarded by the Archangel Michael, who declares who can proceed through Paradise and who can't.
- Eclipso (Formerly)
- Other afterworlds, such as Valhalla and Hades, exist as well.
- It was alluded in Helmet of Fate: Zauriel #1 that since God sent His Only Son to Earth and that nobody can be saved except through him, it was believed that any other nonhuman beings (like Kryptonians and other aliens) would be irrevocably damned. However, it was shown in Paradise Lost that when J'onn, a Martian, temporarily died his soul went straight to Heaven, thus suggesting that Christ's sacrifice was not exclusive to humanity only.
- The idea of Heaven being divided in Seven Levels is found in several different religions. It is a concept known as Seven Heavens. It may also be inspired by Italian poet Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy, where each realm of the afterlife (Hell, Purgatory and Heaven) is divided in several circles, terraces and spheres.