Since humans began to huddle together for protection thousands of years ago, these questions have been part of how civilizations and cultures define heaven, the good place beyond this one. From Christianity to Islam to Hinduism and beyond, from the brush of Michelangelo to the pen of Dante, people across millennia have tried to explain and describe heaven in ways that are distinctive and analogous, unique and universal. In this engrossing cultural history of heaven, Catherine Wolff delves into how people and cultures have defined heaven over the centuries. She describes how different faiths and religions have framed it, how the sense of heaven has evolved, and how nonreligious influences have affected it, from the Enlightenment to the increasingly nonreligious views of heaven today. Wolff looks deep into the accounts of heaven to discover what’s common among them and what makes each conception distinct and memorable. The result is Beyond, an engaging, thoughtful exploration of an idea that is central to our humanity and our desire to define an existence beyond death. Catherine Wolff is the former Director of the Arrupe Center for Community-Based Learning at Santa Clara University. She is the editor of Not Less Than Everything: Catholic Writers on Heroes of Conscience from Joan of Arc to Oscar Romero (HarperCollins, 2013), and the author of Beyond: How Humankind Thinks About Heaven (Riverhead Books/PRH, 2021). She lives in Northern California with her husband Tobias Wolff, close to their three children and three grandchildren.