Sri Chinmoy: The place that one enters right after death, the vital world, is not a nice place. Sometimes souls stay for three years in the vital zone. But if a spiritual Master intervenes he can very rapidly take a soul to the other inner worlds. The fastest that a spiritual Master can do this is nineteen days. In the vital itself there are better worlds and there are lower worlds. On earth we have countries, and there they are called worlds. Here we say that some countries are bad and other countries are nice. All the inner worlds other than the vital are good worlds, although some are higher than others. But in the vital, some worlds are not so nice. The higher the soul goes, from the lower vital to the higher vital to the psychic worlds, the better for it. In the higher inner worlds souls have better treatment and better nourishment. Everything is better.
These are not make-believe stories. In the worlds after death, things can be as definite and as real as they are here. If your father appears to you in a dream from the other world, then when you join him after thirty or forty years, your father will even remember the actual date that he appeared to you. In Heaven there is a chart and everything is recorded.