Hell

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by Lordpendragon, May 13, 2007.

  1. Lordpendragon

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    I was just mulling a few things over the other day.

    The traditional christian notion of hell, seems utterly ridiculous to me and frankly an insult to anyone's intelligence.

    I imagine some will now say that it is a metaphysical concept, but was it when it was invented? And who invented it anyway? I only remember the "Kingdom" being mentioned in the apostolic NT.

    Why would a God of love wish to create hell for his children? What happened to the lost sheep thing? Seems completely illogical and irrational to me.
     
  2. SpeedoGuy

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    Me too. I am deeply troubled by the notion of a supreme being who has prepared eternal torture for erring members of the flock.
     
  3. biguy2738

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    I think that you are very insightful to be able to draw your own conclusions and your own truths based on the God that you know and worship.

    At the risk of being an irritation cos I'm constantly harping about the same things, and I keep mentioning it...which I will do again for the sake of you and others that may have not crossed paths with some of my other posts.

    I am a Christian, and more specifically I am Catholic...and I was in seminary with a desire to become a priest. The one conclusion that I drew while I was there, and keep learning for myself, is that it is imperative for each person to discover what their own experiences and beliefs are telling them, and from their to develop their faith. Once one has come to terms with their own inner truth, to find a religion/denomination which enables them to freely bring their faith to expression as a member of a faith community. However one also needs to be critical about the teachings within that faith community.

    Though I am Catholic, I refuse to follow things blindly, especially if they are in contradiction to what my own beliefs and experiences of God are telling me. So though I may be Catholic, I use it as a sounding board, but not as my absolute truth. Enough said! :biggrin1:

    On the topic of hell, I too have spent a lot of time reflecting on it, and tried to reconcile it with a God that is loving, forgiving and merciful...a God that in todays terms has us tattooed on the palms of his hands
    (Is 49: 15-16a) "Can a woman forget her nursing child, or show no compassion for the child of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of my hands"

    My personal conviction is that, yes, the is a hell...but not in the way that we have been taught. I believe that we create our own hell, as well as for others...here and now. The best way to explain it by sharing an analogy.

    A man is on a pilgrimage of truth and discovers two rooms, each one has a gold plate on the door, the one has heaven and the other has hell engraved on the plate. He opts to deal with the horror of a fiery pit first, so that he can be comforted by the hope of heaven.

    He opens the door to hell, and to his surprise, he finds a group of people dying of starvation, they are each holding a 2m long spoon, and are seated around a table with a huge pot of soup in the middle of the table. He askes them why they are starving when there's food on the table, and they explain that the spoon is too long to bring to their mouths.
    He is puzzled and hopes that he will find an explanation in heaven.

    He exits hell, shutting the door behind him, and goes to heaven. He is surprised to discover a group of rotund people, each person holding his and her own 2m long spoon, they are also seated around a table with a huge pot of soup in the middle of it. He asks them how it is that though the conditions are the same, the people in hell are dying of starvation, when in heaven, everyone is clearly eating more than his/her fill.
    "That's easy," they replied, "in hell, they are so consumed with their own needs, they aren't interested with their neighbour. We on the other hand, are feeding one another, that's how we are have had more than enough to eat."

    I don't think that hell has anything to do with God or his punishment, it has everything to do with us choosing to cut God and neighbour out of our lives...which strips us of our hope.

    That's my opinion anyways....:smile:
     
  4. Ethyl

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    Hell is a pagan myth adopted by Christian doctrine and was/is used by authority figures to keep followers afraid and "in line". The word "Hades" actually means "a place for dead people" (grave). The Hebrew word for Hell is "Sheol" which means "a pit in the earth where the dead are placed" (again, grave). Fire is not mentioned in those passages where Hades is translated to mean Hell. In Isaiah it mentions the Archangel Michael defeating Lucifer and casting him and his angels down to EARTH, so one could interpret Earth as being a kind of Hell.

    I think the concept of Hell was created by man to use as they saw fit. If you want to see Hell, look at all the poverty, disease, war, and hate everywhere here on earth. To me, that's hell.
     
  5. Pecker

    Pecker Retired Moderator
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    It's more a state of mind than a physical place. Ones own prejudices, habits, actions, etc., will determine where one finds a level of comfort, or discomfort, in the afterlife.

    Eternity is a long, long time so I personally believe that personal improvement continues for everyone. I see our spiritual lives as if we are climbing a stairway, where some have managed to climb higher, faster than others but who nevertheless reach back to assist those having a harder go of it for whatever reason.
     
  6. monstro

    monstro New Member

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    Right on. Testify, sister!

    [SIZE=-1]“The mind can make a heaven out of hell or a hell out of heaven"--John Milton[/SIZE]
     
  7. Yorkie

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    My idea of hell is being stuck in the same place as a crowd of religious fundamentalists.
     
  8. B_big dirigible

    B_big dirigible New Member

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    Hell may be little more than a clumsy translation of some six different Greek words.

    There is a Christian spinoff (heretical, naturally) which claims that eventual acceptance of JC as the Savior, Lord, and Master will lead to complete forgiveness for all; even, potentially, Old Nick himself. In other words, redemption is a standing offer. I'm sure this heresy has a name, but I never bothered to remember what it is, having had not much interest in Biblical studies.
     
  9. sasquatch

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    Here's something to dwell on although it may be me being a little simplistic. Heaven needs an antithesis to exist and the lines of good and evil, light and dark etc.
     
  10. hot-rod

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    I think the notion of Hell was written by men with an agenda. Remember, this "bible" was written by man and somehow evolved to the point where it was called "scripture". How can this be, as these people weren't any holier than we are? Look at the Middle East today. Same problems, same people as then. I think we as humans are born with a sense of spiritualism by our very nature. All people are different in every way and so is one's faith. How can we all believe the same, and who has the arrogance and authority to say we must? Preachers, the pope, etc,. I don't think so! They are human just like we are. They're not Gods.
     
  11. hot-rod

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    really can't think of anything worse, these clowns, they are.
     
  12. NCbear

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    I rather like that heresy. Doesn't it have something to do with Jesus' message as relayed in the New Testament??

    :rolleyes:

    NCbear (who really wishes these jackasses who want to believe in the "inerrant word of God" understood how translations, politics, and erasures of history have shaped the book we now perceive as the Bible)
     
  13. HazelGod

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    You just summed up Christian mythology as a whole.
     
  14. subbo

    subbo New Member

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    Religion (any religion!!) and intolerance are synonymous. Religion is the mother of civilization but she now she is eating her child!
    How can any reasonable adult sell his/her soul to a delusion?
     
  15. IntoxicatingToxin

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    Same here. That's why I don't believe in it. :smile:
     
  16. Ethyl

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    Dante's Inferno was based on Virgil and Plato, both of whom were pagans. The concept of Hell in just about every religion stems from pagan philosophy. One of the best examples I own is a copy of the Carmina Gadelica (Latin for "hymns, songs, and incantations") and you can see the assimilation of Christian ideology in pagan beliefs, something Bede was continuously bitching about in his writings pertaining to the gaelic folk. Even in the poems of death, nothing is mentioned about Hell, although there is one called "Joyous Death":

    Death with oil,
    Death with joy,
    Death with light,
    Death with gladness,
    Death with penitence.

    Death without pain,
    Death without fear,
    Death without death,
    Death without horror,
    Death without grieving.
     
  17. Blocko

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    Well, many philosophers believe that Religion is just a way for a plutocractic society to educate it's slack-jawed masses about morals and ethics. Religion, while spiritual in appearance, largely represents a moral code and set of "acceptable" behaviours, if in parable form.

    Plutocrats aren't necessarily very good teachers, but they are generally technocratic (skilled in the use of power). Power doesn't teach that well through Socratic method... It's much better at allegory, indoctrination and ye carrot (heaven) and ye stick (hell).
     
  18. rob_just_rob

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  19. bobabooey69

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    It all makes sense once you quit believing. ;)

    "I have seen angels and demons, heaven and hell. They are us, and the places are under your feet."

    Vincent Van Gogh
     
  20. Onslow

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    I never saw it so beautifully worded before. Thank you for putting it in words that I not only agree with but understand.
     
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