Many people do not believe in a literal heaven so for them, the question “Who goes there?” is moot. The late Dr. Louis Goldberg once told of the time that he went into the store of a Jewish proprietor:
He looked so depressed and dejected that I asked him what was wrong. He replied, “I have just attended the funeral of my favorite aunt.” Softly I inquired, “And where is she now? Will you see her again?” “You know what we believe,” he replied, “When a person dies, the body is placed in the ground, and this is all there is to it. . . . All that remains is the memory of the departed in the hearts of the living.”
That man was not alone in his belief that death was the final curtain. Yet there are noted Jewish scholars and rabbis in all the main branches who do not dismiss belief in an afterlife. Orthodox Rabbi, Shraga Simmons, writes:
The afterlife is a fundamental of Jewish belief! The creation of man testifies to the eternal life of the soul. . . .