What the Hell...?

Hell (detail) by Hieronymus Bosch
The wave of heat has struck Portugal and forests are back to their annual immolation.
As sweat rolls down my forehead...ok, not quite; but as my pores receive the spears of fire, I look at the bright sky and think of Hell: what’s it really like?

Last year, I suggested that Hell was on earth.
This year, I accused myself of being too simplistic and refuted my own thoughts. 

No, I still do not believe in the literal Christian portrait of Hell; but I now understand what Christians mean by it; and they mean to explain that Hell equals Torment. 

If one’s soul incarnates and derails from its original track (i.e. if either it uses its time on earth to defile its existence through evil behaviour or it fails to fulfil whichever mission assigned to it); when its cycle of life ends it can surely expect to be tormented. 
Then, what the hell is the torment? How will the rebellious soul be tormented: with Anthony Weiner’s obscene pictures; with Sarah Palin interviews; with Justin Bieber’s songs...what?

Behold the following scene:
A soul disincarnates and goes back to its essence. Stripped of matter and nihilism, it certainly counts on seeing the Creator; therefore it waits for its turn to meet with Him. 
Eternity goes by. The soul still waits yet it perceives that, the minute they arrive, newcomers have access to the Maker. The lamp within begins to dim and, thus, the soul starts to feel emotions similar to those felt on earth – sadness, denial, anger, despair and ultimately total darkness.
By choosing to yield to negative emotions, the soul creates for itself an absolutely tormenting situation. Suddenly, it realises it is not alone: the valley of the shadow of death is replete of brothers and sisters in the same predicament. 
In the attempt to recreate an earthy reality, the soul hears desperate screams, painful howls and it sees “people” crawling in the mud...Hell is beginning to look more like the clinging relationship with matter. 
Eternity goes by. The Light comes to fetch the soul and informs it that soon it will return to earth. Lux further advises the weary soul that the peel of torment must come off; that illusions must be scrubbed off and that it has to seriously ponder upon its future...and so the cycle recommences.

So, what is Hell? Hell is Torment. 
What’s the Torment? To never see the face of our Maker. 

Comments

  1. In the Eastern spiritual/religious systems, hell is rebirth. Breaking the cycle of births and deaths is Nirvana/Moksha which is heaven.

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  2. Hi Rummy :D!

    "In the Eastern spiritual/religious systems, hell is rebirth. Breaking the cycle of births and deaths is Nirvana/Moksha which is heaven. "

    It does make sense (and I do suggest it in the article, since I used to defend it a lot), however it seems to be too linear, too simple an explanation as well. I mean, rebirth is not that bad (depending on each individual's Karma), is it? Imagine that one's cycle of rebirth is reasonably good & peaceful...where is the Hell there? Unless, you tell me that Hell is also not experiencing bad things...

    Nirvana is the cessation of the rebirth cycle, right? What then?

    Rummy, excellent comment: thank you so so much :D.

    Cheers

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  3. Hi Max!
    Interesting topic.

    In our theology, we believe in two types of hell. The first hell would be the kind that most Christians think of that is a permanent location where the devil and his angels will reside. We don't believe it is an actual burning pit. That term is figurative, and symbolic of the way they will feel being there.

    The other hell is one which is experienced by the wicked immediately following their death. It is what is referred to in the scriptures as "spirit prison". In that place, people who have done wickedly in their life, have a recollection of their guilt, and have to emotionally and spiritually suffer for the wrong they have done. The term "hell-fire" is more symbolic of the way a person feels, than an actual physical situation. Anyone who has done wrong, and felt guilty for it, has surely experienced that kind of torment. The scriptures refer to this location as "spirit prison". The scriptures also teach us that after his death, before his resurrection, Jesus Christ preached to those in spirit prison.

    Another aspect of hell is what we refer to as "spiritual death". You alluded to this in your post. Spiritual death means to be cut off from the presence of God. And that truly is hell!

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  4. Hi D! :D

    "Interesting topic."

    Thank you *bowing*!

    "In our theology, we believe in two types of hell. The first hell would be the kind that most Christians think of that is a permanent location where the devil and his angels will reside."

    This is exactly the point of disagreement between me and "most Christians" (like you said): I don't believe in the Devil (but I do believe Satan - The Accuser - exists; although I do not see him having his own kingdom with his own angels; because that would take the Duality of God out of the equation. God and His Angels can either be for us or against us, depending on our behaviour and task at hand [but mostly our behaviour] remember, Joshua asked "Are you for us or for our adversaries?" and the Angel replied "No, (...)" meaning that Angel Michael can either be for or against God's children).

    "We don't believe it is an actual burning pit. That term is figurative, and symbolic of the way they will feel being there."

    Exactly...

    The other hell is one which is experienced by the wicked immediately following their death. It is what is referred to in the scriptures as "spirit prison". In that place, people who have done wickedly in their life, have a recollection of their guilt, and have to emotionally and spiritually suffer for the wrong they have done. The term "hell-fire" is more symbolic of the way a person feels, than an actual physical situation. Anyone who has done wrong, and felt guilty for it, has surely experienced that kind of torment. (..)"

    I have a different theory about "spirit prison": a place where souls (not spirits, because they are not yet naked of the earthy skin; that is they are not yet back to the essence) get stuck (either because they cling to matter or because they have unresolved matters). But I'd agree with you in saying that "spirit prison" can be viewed as another aspect of hell.

    "Another aspect of hell is what we refer to as "spiritual death". You alluded to this in your post. Spiritual death means to be cut off from the presence of God. And that truly is hell!"

    Indeed...

    D, spectacular comment for which I thank you immensely :D! The Mormon theology has extremely interesting teachings and I feel honoured for receiving such knowledge *bowing*.

    Cheers

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  5. Hi Max,

    Wow, Portugal really IS hot. If you want I can send you a special Weiner headband. Did you hear that there is a Weiner action doll too? (No joke)

    Hmmm, hell is an interesting debate. It's different for many. To some hell is going to the Department of Motor Vehicles, to others hell is going to work in rush hour traffic, there are so many levels, but I digress.

    There are many factions around the world that want to bring hell to the forefront to create chaos, confusion and undermine faith, but we can't let that derail us from love. We have to continue to put love into the world otherwise we would be living in hell, but the inferno we cause for ourselves is much more intense than Dante could ever imagine.

    Btw, I love the title and the photo. Is that Weiner before and after media exposure?

    Hell No Cheers!

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  6. Max, I don´t believe in HELL! The idea of HELL was created by Catholic church and I´m totally sure that the HELL is HERE!!!
    Torment? Oh, yes...we live everyday a torment with no END.
    take care


    "what about that beginning of the XX century's outfit" were you talking about what? LOL

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  7. In Canada, all we think about when we hear about hell, is that it must be warm up there. Which is a very conforting thought in the dead of the winter :-D

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  8. Hi Lady A :D!

    "Wow, Portugal really IS hot. If you want I can send you a special Weiner headband. Did you hear that there is a Weiner action doll too? (No joke)"

    LOL it is, girl! ROFL ROFL ROFL no, thank you. No, I hadn't heard *nodding*...I wonder what kind of action Weiner doll engages in...

    "To some hell is going to the Department of Motor Vehicles, to others hell is going to work in rush hour traffic, there are so many levels, (..)"

    LOL I hear you.

    "There are many factions around the world that want to bring hell to the forefront to create chaos, confusion and undermine faith, but we can't let that derail us from love. We have to continue to put love into the world otherwise we would be living in hell, but the inferno we cause for ourselves is much more intense than Dante could ever imagine."

    Indeed. I loved they way you introduced Dante into the middle of the convo...smooth :D.

    "Btw, I love the title and the photo. Is that Weiner before and after media exposure?"

    Thanks. LOL LOL you know it!! ^5

    Lady A, superb input (with a twist of humour): thank you so so much, girl! :D

    "Hell No Cheers"

    ROFL ROFL ROFL oh, you know me soooo well!

    Hell No Cheers

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  9. Hey Grace :D!

    "Max, I don´t believe in HELL! The idea of HELL was created by Catholic church and I´m totally sure that the HELL is HERE!!!
    Torment? Oh, yes...we live everyday a torment with no END."

    I hear you.

    Grace, thank you so much for your comment, darling :D!

    Cheers

    P.S: «"what about that beginning of the XX century's outfit" were you talking about what? LOL» - lol ah, I was talking about one of your gorgeous photos (in your blog)...I will go by your place and be more specific.

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  10. Hi Zhu :D!

    "In Canada, all we think about when we hear about hell, is that it must be warm up there. Which is a very conforting thought in the dead of the winter :-D"

    ROFL ROFL I definitely hear you!!

    Zhu Zhu, thank you a million times for your humour :D.

    Cheers

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  11. Hey Max! Daughter and the twins are doing great. She had them through CS. They are home now and doing well.

    Thank you so much for the kind words sweetie.

    Have a fabulous weekend!

    Kisses and Hugs

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  12. Interesting thoughts. I always thought that hell is present in our everyday lives especially when we experience pain, anger, and other bad stuff.

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  13. Hey Liza :D!

    Oh, am I ever so glad!! May God bless them all.

    I can imagine how proud you must be right now - no need to thank me for I meant every single word of it :D.

    Big hug and cheers

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  14. Hey Charles :D!

    Thank you *bowing*. Yes, I used to shared that same point of view...and it makes sense.

    Charles, thank you so much for your input :D.

    Cheers

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  15. Max:

    I'm stuck for words on this issue. Hell? Heaven? Where do we go after death? The eternal soul? All that stuff is way above my pay grade.

    I heard one time that we all make our own Hell. You know, like we make our own luck. But I think we all believe in luck just a little. I do. Don't you? Doesn't everybody? So it logical follows that we all believe in Hell just a little bit too. That seems logical. Do you agree? It's the same for Heaven. They say there are no atheist in foxholes. I believe that too.

    So if that's all true, then I suggest we all be a little careful as we live our lives. After all, we wouldn't want to accidentally slip down into those hellish ovens. Ouch!

    How about this: Wouldn't it be a bummer if there is only Hell, no Heaven?

    Happy trails.

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  16. Hey Swu :D!

    "I heard one time that we all make our own Hell. You know, like we make our own luck. But I think we all believe in luck just a little. I do. Don't you? Doesn't everybody? So it logical follows that we all believe in Hell just a little bit too. That seems logical. Do you agree? It's the same for Heaven. They say there are no atheist in foxholes. I believe that too."

    Well, I can't say that I believe much in luck...but I totally see where you're getting at. My view of Heaven may differ a bit from what is usually depicted as well...but yes, everybody believes in it a bit too (even though they may deny it).
    LOL "no atheist in foxholes"....you know?

    "So if that's all true, then I suggest we all be a little careful as we live our lives. After all, we wouldn't want to accidentally slip down into those hellish ovens. Ouch!"

    LOL LOL...I agree.

    "How about this: Wouldn't it be a bummer if there is only Hell, no Heaven?"

    LOL it would be a bummer, but since life is made of dualities I don't think that would make much sense...

    Swu, awesome comment, man: thank you ever so much :D!

    Cheerio

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