Hell - Diving into the Lake of Darkness

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Sciborg_S_Patel

#1
'Frateretto calls me; and tells me Nero is an angler in the lake of darkness'
-Shakespeare, King Lear


Is Hell real?
Is there more than one?
How does one avoid it?
Is it permanent?
Do the beings of Hell serve a higher Good, a greater Evil, or are they simply another species in a vast cosmos of realms?

Is it just metaphorical? ->

"People must hurt each other, as inevitably as they breathe. Nothing can stop it. It's not enough to accept it. Accepting it is not enough, like sighing resignedly and putting on an attitude of long-suffering. Don't get to be too good at protecting yourself. You've got to be ripped to pieces for the one you love, again and again. That's doesn't prove anything but love, and its entitlements are a frailty that can't be held.

But you will live even in that hell. The fire that hurts you gives off light like any other fire, that illuminates beautiful things, and is beautiful itself."
-The Great Lover, Michael Cisco


Or is Hell just here, in this world? ->

“The inferno of the living is not something that will be; if there is one, it is what is already here, the inferno where we live every day, that we form by being together. There are two ways to escape suffering it. The first is easy for many: accept the inferno and become such a part of it that you can no longer see it. The second is risky and demands constant vigilance and apprehension: seek and learn to recognize who and what, in the midst of inferno, are not inferno, then make them endure, give them space.”
― Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities

Or could it be both Imaginal/Phenomenal and Material at the same time?
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

#2
Interesting article. As I recall even Dante has what might be read as moments of doubt with regard to who ends up damned*.
Hell-bent: Younger Christians may be ditching doctrines of fire and brimstone – but will Christianity ever get rid of hell entirely?

Chellew-Hodge’s understanding that punishment is an essential feature of religion, and her students’ confidence that it need not be, might seem to represent a simple generational divide. That so many young people in the US identify as ‘spiritual but not religious’ at least partly results from their impression of organised religion – particularly the Protestantism that has long dominated the US religious landscape – as judgmental, exclusive, and punishing. This longing for a feel-good faith with a friendly deity might help to explain why so many fell for the Pope Francis parody and why they were so disappointed that it was untrue. But the longing for a hell-less faith cannot be attributed to a contemporary generational shift alone. Time and again in the history of western Christianity, this longing has surfaced, only to be subdued and hell reaffirmed as not just scripturally but also morally necessary.

*When describing the damnation of his apparently gay teacher Brunetto Latini, who is condemned to run across burning sand. Here's Dante's parting description, which ends Canto XV of Inferno:

"I would say more, but my walking and my talk
May last no longer, since I see over there
New smoke billowing upward from the sandbar.

People are coming — I must not be with them.
Let me commend my Treasury to you:
In it I still live and no more I ask."

At that he turned and seemed like one of those
Who at Verona run through the countryside
For the green cloth, and among them he appeared
The winner of the race and not the loser.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

#3
"Hell is other people."
-Sartre, No Exit


Here's the whole play, for those interested. It's actually pretty great (IMO anyway) how (in spite of the above quote) Sartre manages to show how Hell is more driven by an inability to change and love one's own self. I've thought the best way to interpret Dante's Inferno is to take a similar position to that text.

Hell is the state of suffering one - perhaps inadvertently - clings to.

And of course Jung says it better than I can:

“In actual life it requires the greatest art to be simple, and so acceptance of oneself is the essence of the moral problem and the acid test of one's whole outlook on life. That I feed the beggar, that I forgive an insult, that I love my enemy in the name of Christ - all these are undoubtedly great virtues. What I do unto the least of my brethren, that I do unto Christ. But what if I should discover that the least among them all, the poorest of all beggars, the most impudent of all offenders, yea the very fiend himself - that these are within me, and that I myself stand in need of my own kindness, that I myself am the enemy who must be loved - what then? Then, as a rule, the whole truth of Christianity is reversed: there is no more talk of love and long-suffering; we say to the brother within us, ‘Raca,’ and condemn and rage against ourselves. We hide him from the world; we deny ever having met this least among the lowly in ourselves, and had it been God himself who drew near to us in this despicable form, we should have denied him a thousand times before a single cock had crowed.”

-C.G. Jung
 
#4
"Hell is other people."
-Sartre, No Exit


Here's the whole play, for those interested. It's actually pretty great (IMO anyway) how (in spite of the above quote) Sartre manages to show how Hell is more driven by an inability to change and love one's own self. I've thought the best way to interpret Dante's Inferno is to take a similar position to that text.

Hell is the state of suffering one - perhaps inadvertently - clings to.
Reminds me of Joseph Campbell's take on hell...an inability to change, a clinging to the existing self-identity :

"The moment the life process stops, it starts drying up; and the whole sense of myth is finding the courage to follow the process. In order to have something new, something old has to be broken; and if you’re too heavily fixed on the old, you’re going to get stuck. That’s what hell is: the place of people who could not yield their ego system to allow the grace of a transpersonal power to move them."

"Hell is life drying up.
The Hoarder, the one in us that wants to keep, to hold on, must be killed.
If we are hanging onto the form now, we're not going to have the form next.
You can't make an omelet without breaking eggs.
Destruction before creation."
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

#6
The Campaign to Eliminate Hell

A new generation of evangelical scholars are challenging the idea that sinners are doomed to eternal torment—but traditionalists are pushing back.

Fudge is among those who endorse an alternative doctrine, known as “annihilationism” or “conditional immortality,” which holds that, after death, sinners simply cease to exist, while those who are saved enjoy eternal life under God’s grace. Although it’s not a positive outcome for the wicked—in fact, it amounts to spiritual capital punishment—it’s deemed a far more merciful and just fate than an eternity of torture.

Traditionalists are pushing back at this doctrine, which they view as heresy born out of misguided sentimentality. But, annihilationists believe they have already made significant inroads within the evangelical community.

“My prediction is that, even within conservative evangelical circles, the annihilation view of hell will be the dominant view in 10 or 15 years,” says Preston Sprinkle, who co-authored the book Erasing Hell, which, in 2011, debuted at number three on the New York Times bestseller list. “I base that on how many well-known pastors secretly hold that view. I think that we are at a time and place when there is a growing suspicion of adopting tradition for the sake of tradition.”
 
#7
The Buddhist Book of The Dead has it own "version" of Hell, were they say that you are fighting against your own inner demons - and until you understand that, and not see them as "external demons" you are locked in that struggle indefinitely.

The part about that starts around 22min into the video



Many "hell-deniers" says that; Hell is just the absence of Gods love.
Others believe in a personal "tailor-suited" Hell, made for your own demons and sins. And others in the more "original state" of Hell, were it is order, and common & given places depending on your sins - like Dantes Inferno

Speaking of Dantes Inferno - and the phrase; "Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate" ("Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.") written on the entrance to Hell - it reminded me of a pretty disturbing movie about "personal hells", called As Above, So Below
It was a weird, creepy, claustrophobic, and despairful, movie - but it was good in its own way.


 
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#9
I haven't read that many hellish NDE's, but those I've read there is often that the "trip to hell" is temporary, and that they get salvation, and have the "normal" NDE after that. Like the case of Howard Storm. But maybe some of you have heard/read about all-out hellish NDE's, were they slipped hells grasp and was revived?

The Case of Howard Storm: A True Story







At least Bon Scott didn't think Hell was such a bad place. ;)


AC/DC - Hell Ain't A Bad Place To Be



 
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#10
haven't read that many hellish NDE's, but those I've read there is often that the "trip to hell" is temporary, and that they get salvation, and have the "normal" NDE after that. Like the case of Howard Storm. But maybe some of you have heard/read about all-out hellish NDE's, were they slipped hells grasp and was revived?
I was thinking this same thing. I cannot remember the name of the guy, or even where I heard it now, but he was an atheist and he died (again, I cannot remember how but he was relatively young at the time and it was unexpected, i.e. not from illness) and as he went through the process, he thought "so this is it, lights out forever" but was surprised to find that the lights never went out. He realized his consciousness was still alive somehow, at which point he kind of started to panic because he thought if there is life after death, then maybe hell is a place and he would certainly be going there, since he didn't think he had been a very good person. He thought "I'm a piece of shit, I've done nothing good" at which point he immediately found himself to be a literal pile of shit. IIRC, he panicked about this situation he found himself in, dying and turning into a pile of crap, but at some point he realized it was an illusion. That he was literally manifesting himself as a pile of crap because that's how he felt, and as soon as he realized it was an illusion, he found he could break out of this "pile" and eventually freed himself and basically went onto a more standardized version of the NDE.

Not exactly hellish, more humorous than anything and he said he was able to laugh about it in retrospect but during the experience he was terrified.
 
#11
I was thinking this same thing. I cannot remember the name of the guy, or even where I heard it now, but he was an atheist and he died (again, I cannot remember how but he was relatively young at the time and it was unexpected, i.e. not from illness) and as he went through the process, he thought "so this is it, lights out forever" but was surprised to find that the lights never went out. He realized his consciousness was still alive somehow, at which point he kind of started to panic because he thought if there is life after death, then maybe hell is a place and he would certainly be going there, since he didn't think he had been a very good person. He thought "I'm a piece of shit, I've done nothing good" at which point he immediately found himself to be a literal pile of shit. IIRC, he panicked about this situation he found himself in, dying and turning into a pile of crap, but at some point he realized it was an illusion. That he was literally manifesting himself as a pile of crap because that's how he felt, and as soon as he realized it was an illusion, he found he could break out of this "pile" and eventually freed himself and basically went onto a more standardized version of the NDE.

Not exactly hellish, more humorous than anything and he said he was able to laugh about it in retrospect but during the experience he was terrified.
Hahaha, what a terrible situation. :D
I don't dare to wonder what would've happen to him if he had thought of himself as; "I've been a dick", or "I've been an asshole,.all my life" ;)

But it was an interesting story nevertheless, because the belief amongst many is that we create part of our own afterlife depending on our "inner demons" and preconceived notions. Like some of the Buddhist bardo
 
#12
Here is a narrated & visual documentary about Hell that will interest you.
Its about how it's been perceived by different people over the ages - and some interviews & perspective from historians, philosophers & theologians.



What is hell?
This is a documentary special called; “Map of Hell.”
We get to follow the "birth" of hell, and how it has developed over the centuries, and across different cultures, and beliefs.


The Catechism defines it as an eternal “state of definitive self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed,” and its chief punishment as “eternal separation from God.” Beyond that, there is a wide range of both literal and figurative views about fire, torture, etc., most of which fall comfortably within the ambit of the Church’s teaching.

First up is the shadowy Greek underworld of Hades and its evolution in Socrates, Plato, and Virgil. The takeaway here seems to be that, whatever else hell is, it’s in the highest contemplation of art and philosophy that the map begins to take shape.

That trajectory continues into the early Christian and medieval periods

The show’s art direction is excellent, but it’s with Dante’s Divine Comedy that things really heat up. “For Dante, surrendering to sin means choosing the self over the route to God,”One by one, we meet Dante’s sinners, doomed to live out “the nature of their sin” in the nine circles of hell, which descend from “crimes of passion” to “crimes of malice.” At the bottom of the inferno are those who have strayed furthest from God, lodged forever in a lake of ice..The last section begins with the Reformation and its sudden rupture with “Catholic ideas” like purgatory. What follows are two distinctively modern visions of hell. On the one hand, there’s a fire-and-brimstone pessimism chastising “sinners in the hands of an angry God.” On the other, there’s a psychologizing that reduces hell to the horror genre, a quirk of evolutionary survival.
http://putlocker.is/watch-map-of-hell-online-free-putlocker.html
 
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