Why is it common for religious people to think that God is “up there”? Why is God associated with the sky?

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Why is it common for religious people to think that God is “up there”? Why is God associated with the sky?

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11 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

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Anonymous 0 Comments

This has been believed for over 5000 years. The sky is constantly present, and affects us frequently, yet obviously different from where we live on the ground, and could not in ancient times be visited or affected by us.

ELI5: Why is heaven most commonly referred to as being up above the earth while Hell is most commonly referred to as being down below the earth or in the ground? When did this tradition come about?
byu/hiimtekie inexplainlikeimfive

Anonymous 0 Comments

To ancient peoples, the “heavens” were populated with Gods (the stars, planets, moon and sun), and they looked down upon mortal men. Various cultures worshiped the Sun, Different constellations of stars, etc. Somewhere along the line, Abraham, decided there was just one God, and it wasn’t any of the ‘heavenly bodies’, but was instead invisible. Because, why not? But he still resided up in the heavens.

The God of Abraham, was passed along to his sons. His son Ishmael from his wife Hagar (who was Egyptian and actually his other wife’s handmaiden) left and that line became patriarch to the Arabs and eventually gave rise to Islam. His sons Jacob and Isaac, from wife Sarah, left and formed Judaism, which also birthed Christianity. Moses is directly descended from Abraham through Isaac.

Both the Koran and the Bible document this to varied degrees.

So our entire concept of God, whether Christian, Muslim or Jew comes from one guy.

Abraham.

Anonymous 0 Comments

For a long time, the sky was pretty much unreachable. And to stop people from going somewhere and looking for god, everyone just said he lives in the sky, above the clouds.
Also, the sky was always something people didn’t understand and were impressed by

Anonymous 0 Comments

A lot of it comes from the language. “As above, so below” (paraphrasing Matt 6:10).

Cast ‘down’ to hell. Raised ‘up’ to heaven.

It’s spiritual, not physical, but the imagery sticks.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Genesis 1: God created the heaven and the earth. Psalm 11: The Lord’s throne is in heaven.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Mostly because since ancient time we have looked to the sky or “heavens” as a source of wonder and astonishment. There was a point where anything natural like lightning or rain would be associated with some kind of god. The fact that we could not explore the sky until very recently is what added to the illusion. Humans are very keen to jump to conclusions when we don’t understand something it’s a kind of defence mechanism for understanding our “place” within this realm. It was easier to assume god was watching and judging from a place we couldn’t reach.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Hi Everyone,

Just a friendly reminder about rule 5. This question is about historical associations and not a place for you to share your particular opinion on religion.
I’ll be removing anything that interjects an unnecessary opinion to make a point (in either direction).

Let me know if you have questions, or reach out in mod mail

Petwins

Anonymous 0 Comments

it used to be common to think gods live on earth. the problem with that approach is that people can debunk your belief by walking over and seeing that they aren’t there. so gods were moved to harder to reach places, like the sky. and now that we can go there too, people are revising their beliefs again and claiming they actually exist on a different plane of existence or outside the universe entirely

Anonymous 0 Comments

There’s no such thing as a “new” religion – every religion is just an offshoot of the one before it. As a result, you have to absorb, tweak and spin the practices and stories from the previous religion(s) you’re absorbing into your new one.

Islam has to deal with it’s predecessors (Christianity and Judaism) so the Quoran has whole passages that are basically pulled from the bible, or about biblical figures. That’s just a recent example.

If we go back really far, Christian-Judeo-Islamic religions all sort of started from a similar area, and they had religions that gave spiritual significance to the objects in the sky. It makes sense, the Sun is necessary for life, the moon is equally as large (from perspective) and it’s easy to start giving stories to the other points of light up there. You see this in almost all religions. It follows that the gods would be “up there” where they could see us.

This just is so ingrained that it went from literally the stars being the gods to god just being up there. As we explored the heavens (with telescopes, then later space craft), it became euphemistic and stayed ingrained.

Hinduism and Budhism are two interesting exceptions: believing God(s) live in everything around us (as well as in the skies).