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Elvis Presley was known as the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, but he wasn’t known for his musings on the afterlife. Regardless, Elvis’ girlfriend said that he had some strong opinions on heaven. He was influenced by one denomination of Christianity in particular. Notably, Priscilla Presley feels she has had spiritual experiences with Elvis well after his death.

Elvis Presley thought the afterlife was open to non-Christians

Linda Thompson was Elvis’ girlfriend from 1972 to 1976. She would later become a professional songwriter. She might be most known for penning Whitney Houston’s classic ballad “I Have Nothing” from the soundtrack of The Bodyguard. More recently, that song has been covered by Ariana Grande.

In her 2016 book A Little Thing Called Life, Thompson described the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll as a Christian with an inclusive theology. “Elvis was very humble about his place in the cosmos and had an abiding faith in Jesus,” he said. “At the same time, he was never judgmental about the beliefs of others and didn’t feel everyone in the whole world had to be Christian.

“He and I often discussed this point,” he said. “We agreed that the God we knew and loved, which was all-encompassing, did not hold the belief that if you’re raised with Hinduism, or Buddhism, or any other non-Christian faith, you’re doomed to hell. That’s not the God we recognized.” The question of whether and how non-Christians can go to heaven is a contentious point in Christian theology.

Elvis Presley was inspired by Pentecostalism

Thompson gave fans more insight into the “All Shook Up” singer‘s understanding of the world. “After his passion for music, this was the most profound way in which he connected with others,” she wrote. “Elvis grew up Christian, and he held an amalgamation of different Christian faiths, with the overriding one being Pentecostal.

“He believed in the laying on of hands, and faith healing, and he believed in the Holy Spirit,” she added. Faith healing is a common belief in Pentecostal Christian groups. Pentecostals also believe that the Holy Spirit can give believers spiritual gifts, such as the gift of prophecy.


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Priscilla Presley said she’s communicated with her former husband in the afterlife

Notably, Priscilla Presley believes that the “Can’t Help Falling in Love” singer is on the other side. During a 2015 interview with The Guardian, she said that her former husband’s spirit still communicates with her. When she goes to Graceland, she can see him walking down the stairs, hear him laugh, and hear him playing music in the mansion’s music room. She finds these experiences “surreal,” but in a beautiful way. Sometimes, Priscilla feels that Elvis’ spirit is guiding her when she makes decisions.

The idea of Elvis as an immortal being has also popped up in popular culture. For example, Marc Cohn’s “Walking in Memphis” depicts the rock star continuing to haunt the Jungle Room in Graceland. Meanwhile, the dark comedy Death Becomes Her portrays Elvis as one of many celebrities who lives on through magic. The film is a satire of Hollywood’s obsession with youth and beauty.

Elvis believed in an afterlife and Priscilla believes he made it there.