Finwe and Miriel as depicted by ‘steamey’
I was reading in JRR Tolkien’s posthumous History of Middle Earth about how unrequited love and the grief of the bereaved were regarded as a serious flaw in the elven paradise of the undying lands; and it struck me that much the same might be supposed about the Mormon understanding of Heaven.
Even on earth, the primacy (rightly) accorded to Marriage and Family does necessarily challenge those Mormons who (for many possible reasons) lack one or both. And since Celestial Marriage is an essential pre-requisite of the highest exaltation, and current revelation seems to be is that this marriage is monogamous, there appears to be a problem…
At a ‘numerical’ level, there is the matter that there seems to be a requirement for an exact matching of the numbers of men and women, and that each individual will have find one beloved spouse among this number – with none left over.
But of course, all depends on agency, and some will almost-certainly choose not to marry (indeed, some may choose not to be incarnated). And then there is this problem of unrequited love…
I mean when one truly loves the other and nobody else, but that love is not reciprocated. Or that more than one woman a particular man or vice versa – perhaps many-fold?
It seems that the numbers do not add-up and cannot necessarily be made to do so?… This is surely a flaw in the ‘perfection’ of Heaven.
But the problem is illusory – or, at least, not necessary nor permanent – in the context of an open-ended, evolving universe such as Mormons envisage.
In the first place Heaven is not a state of perfection. That is to say: for Mormons perfection is not a state but a process. Heaven changes and the loving creative-process of exaltation is the perfection of Life. The population is being added to (presumably without ultimate limit, assuming the number of ‘intelligences’ is not fixed; and especially once Men become fully divine and can beget spiritual children), and the individual people themselves are each becoming more exalted – they continue to change, experience and grow.
Therefore, over time, there is no reason why everyone should not find a truly-loved spouse; and having found such a person, celestial marriage will of its very nature make an unbreakable creative dyad of husband and wife; such that there is no ‘comparison’ of the kind we experience between potential-spouse A and potential-spouse B.
The perfection of love is both permanent and also a dynamic state ; and will overcome all such temporary problems in the course of eternal time.