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 Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?

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alj
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptyFri May 23, 2014 11:51 am

Interesting article and source:
Hell Is a Myth -- Actually, a Bunch of Myths

If I had the opportunity to meet Paul of Tarsus in the flesh, I'd take it in a heartbeat. I'd meet him on a sunny afternoon in June at one of those lovely places along the Via del Colosseo in Rome. I'd ask him questions about his pre-conversion life. .....

I'd also want to ask about the whole "Road to Damascus" thing. Did you really hear God's voice? Does God even have a "voice," and if so, what in the world does it sound like? ....

When the questions turned to more specifically religious and theological topics, I imagine Paul would have quick and ready answers. What did you really mean by "To live is Christ"? He would probably quip, Let me also refer you to a letter I once wrote to the church in Galatia (or Ephesus, etc.), where I dealt with that subject in greater detail. [Sounds like a familiar response to logical questions on this forum]

But if I were to ask St. Paul what he believes about hell, I'll bet he would give an uncharacteristically vague answer. Why? For the simple reason that to the nascent Christian church, even to Paul, hell barely existed. All they knew from the Hebrew scriptures was Sheol, which literally means "grave" and was believed to be the dusty deep place within the earth itself to which every soul traveled after death, accompanying its body. And of course Paul lived, wrote, and was martyred for the faith before any of the Gospels were written.

There were rumblings and speculations of an afterlife in the century of Christ, Philo, and Paul, but these came mostly from what was then pop culture: Greek and Roman mythology. The rumblings blossomed briefly and opaquely in the Gospels, and then at various points throughout late antiquity and the Middle Ages, including in the revelations to the Prophet Muhammad recorded in the Qur'an and again in the writings of the greatest theologian, Thomas Aquinas.

It was the Italian poet Dante Alighieri who changed everything with his famous Inferno, which he began writing in about 1306 CE. But to read the Inferno today is to realize how little it has to do with the Bible. There is more Greek and Roman mythology ― adapted by Dante from classics such as Hesiod's Theogony, Virgil's Aeneid, and Ovid'sMetamorphoses ― than there is scripture in Dante's nine circles of hell. Where Augustine had criticized writers like Virgil and Ovid, saying that Christians shouldn't read them, the pagan poet Virgil serves as Dante's expert tour guide through the upside-down cathedral of the Inferno. Using a bunch of philosophies and myths, we have Dante to thank for making eternal punishment exotic, real, and... Christian.



At this very moment, tourists are flocking to Florence hotels for "Dan Brown Packages," and one-day trips for "Dan Brown Tours," during which they visit key sites in the life of Dante featured in Brown's New York Times bestseller, Inferno.

But, you see, there was little agreement among Christians, before Dante, about the nature and extent of what we call hell. Ancient Judaism and the New Testament writers had very little to say on the subject. Jesus made a few obscure, picturesque references to the afterlife, but he usually used Gehenna as his example of a place to be feared (eg. Mt. 5:29). Gehenna was a place on the outskirts of the Old City of Jerusalem where trash, and sometimes the bodies of crucified criminals, were burned......

Virgil and Plato, the Qur'an, medieval mystery plays, and medieval theologians were what fed Dante's imagination, not the Bible. To write his famous poem, Dante imagined the setting, characters, emotions, and drama that he wanted to create, and then set about fleshing it out with an elaborate compilation of myths and philosophies. The story he created was frightening, cinematic, and universal -- and it wouldn't have been any of those things if he'd simply used what the Bible has to say on the topic. In other words, hell has nine descending circles just like the devil has hooves and a tail.

So why do we continue to have such a fascination with the hell of Dante's imagination? It is certainly due to how Christians have embraced and preached it for centuries. The sad truth is that Dante's hellish vision has been useful in promoting colonizing, crusades and "conversions" for the last 700 years. But it is time for that to change. It is time for Christians, and all people of faith, to re-imagine the afterlife in less medieval terms.

--

Jon M. Sweeney is the author of Inventing Hell: Dante, the Bible, and Eternal Torment, just published by Hachette.


Last edited by alj on Fri May 30, 2014 8:02 am; edited 1 time in total
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Domenic Pappalardo
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptySat May 24, 2014 6:48 pm

Hell. The word comes from the word Hades which mans, “The Common Grave.” There have been many types of hell, or after life throughout mans history. The belief would depend of which religion one was speaking about. All religions have different sects. Within the Christian religion, some believe Hell is a place of fire, others a place of sleep, and still some say it is a holding place.



The Moslems have the worst hell. Here their flesh burns off, and as it’s burning off, it is re-growing so it can burn off again. This is to go on forever.



The Catholic hell has had several changes. It used to be a dark cave, then fire, back to a dark place, and again fire. Either way it’s not a good place.



The Christian Bible has it as a state of sleep without any thoughts.



Some non Christians have death as moving from one plan of life to a higher, or in some cases, a lover life.



If one is a Christian and is a sect that has hell fire, here is were that came from;



When Jesus was here on earth as a human, he spoke to people in a manner they would understand. With herdsmen, he used an illustration of the dividing of the goats, and the sheep. With the farmers, The dividing of the wheat, and the weeds. Most cities at that time had a dump which was always on fire for sanitary reasons. The city of Jerusalem had their dump in what was known as the valley of Hinnom, or Gehenna. The merchants had a saying, “Hay Bill, if you invest in that, you won’t get your money back.” Jesus used this: “If you do this or that, you will be throwing your life into Gehanna.” Meaning you won’t get it back. Later religions used that to control their followers…”if you don’t follow what we say, you will burn in Hell.”



Some people hold that at death, they will live as atoms floating in space, or their atoms will turned into something else. I believe the something else…dirt.
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Abe F. March
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptySat May 24, 2014 11:35 pm

Who knows?  Grasping at straws is nothing new.  It is possible that Hell is a method of instilling fear as a means of control.  "Believe as we do or you will go to Hell" is nothing new. 
 
Just yesterday something prompted thoughts about my childhood and religion.  I remember an incident as a child that is still vivid in memory.  Hell was eternal punishment.  The rapture was mentioned often where those who were ready (pure of heart – without sin) would be taken to heaven “like a thief in the night”.  “No man knoweth the day or the hour when the son of man cometh”.  In Sunday school, we had pamphlets depicting people rising from their graves as well as their homes.  These pictures made a lasting impression.  In the incident I mention, I was working in the barn and didn’t know that my mother had gone away.  My father was at work.  When I returned to the house, it was empty.  I looked everywhere and saw no one.  I looked next door and saw no one. I was seized with fear and thought that everyone had been raptured and I was left behind.  I cried.  I wondered what I had done that caused me to be left behind.  I was devastated.  It was the end of me and my life.  The next thing for me was eternal punishment.
When my mother returned home, she wanted to know why I was crying.  I hugged her, but didn’t tell her what caused my fright.  I knew that if I did that I would get another sermon that would reaffirm the fear of being left behind.  I hated living in fear of doing something wrong.  I became observant of other people and how they lived their lives.  I became judgmental and thought I knew who would be gong to Hell if they didn’t change their ways. 
 
There were numerous things during my childhood and later in life that changed my views about religion and the Bible.  I sought answers.  Concrete answers were not forthcoming.  Belief and Faith” was the response based on the doctrine of the church. 
 
As far as Hell is concerned, I believe that living in fear is Hell.  To discuss my belief of the hereafter is personal.  I am at peace with my beliefs.  There is no one that can provide proof that would change my views.  Speculation, assumptions and interpretations of ancient scripts are not proof.  Whatever fits your needs and gives you peace is right for you, IMV.
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Domenic Pappalardo
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptySun May 25, 2014 6:31 am

Abe,

I am sadden to hear religion also hurt you. I too remember as a young boy the things they said. I stopped being a Catholic at about the age of nine. As I got older, I found the lies they were telling are not in the Bible. They threaten with hell fire, or the promise of heaven. Once a week they also have the sheep confess their sins to a man. All these things are against Gods word in the Bible…and for this they take money.

I’m not a Lawyer, but I do know some of the law. If anybody takes money from people based on a lie, it is fraud. Here in the States that is a felony. I don’t understand how they have gotten away with that for all these years.

I have stated many times, “All religion based on lies is a false religion.” There is not one religion that can not be proven false. These religious leaders are schooled in the bible. Surly they have to know they are deceiving people.

When God created man, he also gave man the desire to serve him. Religions know this, and use that to take control of people. All young people, when they are hurt in a major way, spend most of the rest of their life dragging the hurt around.

I warn people all the time; Read the Bible. Learn what it says, and decide for yourself if it is true, or false. Above all, stay away from religions…they are not from God.
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Abe F. March
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptySun May 25, 2014 6:42 am

I'm seeing you in a new light, Dom.  Perhaps I have misunderstood some of your posts.
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alj
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptySun May 25, 2014 7:28 am

Well, I wrote a response to the latest posts, and apparently hit "send" at the same time as Abe, only my post just disappeared.

I will try to recompose it.

The terms, "Hades" and "Gehenna" both originally meant "abodes of the dead," with no distinction between good and evil.  While the 1611 KJV translates both terms as "Hell," that source did not come about until 200+ years after Dante's Inferno.

The article in the OP was not about the origins of the word itself, but about the dualistic philosophy which separated good and evil into polarized opposites, with Heaven and Hell as the eternal dwelling places for each type of person, and it was the religious institutions who defined which was which.

These concepts are embedded in Western Civilization, whether or not one has intellectually rejected the institutions or not/  We have inherited the archetypes.  they are a part of our collective unconscious.

It takes more than an intellectual decision to be truly free of the consequences of those deep-rooted beliefs, and the fears we have of not being good enough.  We have to psychologically work through them and let them go.

Until we do, we will still have to see ourselves as good, and that means we will still project our fear onto others, and we will continue to have wars and antagonistic relationships.

We cannot truly establish values and define morality until we are free of that basic fear. We will not have the clarity of perception to be able to decide what is right and what is wrong in any given circumstance.

At least, that's the way I see it, for now.
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Abe F. March
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptySun May 25, 2014 8:10 am

Interesting thread Ann.  Your analysis and historical information gives more light to the subject. 
Letting go of deep seated dogmas sounds easy, but is very difficult.  As you said, we are still controlled by them on an unconsious level. 
As I took my walk this morning, I thought about this thread and all the negativity associated with evil and Hell.  The opposite of that is good and love.  As I viewed the vineyards and the trees -  everything with new life and looked at the blue sky dotted with white clouds, I felt peace.  Taking a walk in nature for me is cleansing.  I see the Universe as one with God and Love. That helps me fight the hate and guilt of dogmas.  I may sound strange, but I am uniquely me.
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alj
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptySun May 25, 2014 8:28 am

Unique, yes, and that's a good thing, Abe. We each have a purpose, and contributions to the whole tha only we, as individuals, can make.

There is a park just up the road from my subdivision, where I go whenever I can, just to be in nature. I understand your perspective concerning those walks.

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Domenic Pappalardo
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptyFri May 30, 2014 7:37 am

alj wrote:
Interesting article and source:
Hell Is a Myth -- Actually, a Bunch of Myths

If I had the opportunity to meet Paul of Tarsus in the flesh, I'd take it in a heartbeat. I'd meet him on a sunny afternoon in June at one of those lovely places along the Via del Colosseo in Rome. I'd ask him questions about his pre-conversion life. .....

I'd also want to ask about the whole "Road to Damascus" thing. Did you really hear God's voice? Does God even have a "voice," and if so, what in the world does it sound like? ....

When the questions turned to more specifically religious and theological topics, I imagine Paul would have quick and ready answers. What did you really mean by "To live is Christ"? He would probably quip, Let me also refer you to a letter I once wrote to the church in Galatia (or Ephesus, etc.), where I dealt with that subject in greater detail. [Sounds like a familiar response to logical questions on this forum]

But if I were to ask St. Paul what he believes about hell, I'll bet he would give an uncharacteristically vague answer. Why? For the simple reason that to the nascent Christian church, even to Paul, hell barely existed. All they knew from the Hebrew scriptures was Sheol, which literally means "grave" and was believed to be the dusty deep place within the earth itself to which every soul traveled after death, accompanying its body. And of course Paul lived, wrote, and was martyred for the faith before any of the Gospels were written.

There were rumblings and speculations of an afterlife in the century of Christ, Philo, and Paul, but these came mostly from what was then pop culture: Greek and Roman mythology. The rumblings blossomed briefly and opaquely in the Gospels, and then at various points throughout late antiquity and the Middle Ages, including in the revelations to the Prophet Muhammad recorded in the Qur'an and again in the writings of the greatest theologian, Thomas Aquinas.

It was the Italian poet Dante Alighieri who changed everything with his famous Inferno, which he began writing in about 1306 CE. But to read the Inferno today is to realize how little it has to do with the Bible. There is more Greek and Roman mythology ― adapted by Dante from classics such as Hesiod's Theogony, Virgil's Aeneid, and Ovid'sMetamorphoses ― than there is scripture in Dante's nine circles of hell. Where Augustine had criticized writers like Virgil and Ovid, saying that Christians shouldn't read them, the pagan poet Virgil serves as Dante's expert tour guide through the upside-down cathedral of the Inferno. Using a bunch of philosophies and myths, we have Dante to thank for making eternal punishment exotic, real, and... Christian.



At this very moment, tourists are flocking to Florence hotels for "Dan Brown Packages," and one-day trips for "Dan Brown Tours," during which they visit key sites in the life of Dante featured in Brown's New York Times bestseller, Inferno.

But, you see, there was little agreement among Christians, before Dante, about the nature and extent of what we call hell. Ancient Judaism and the New Testament writers had very little to say on the subject. Jesus made a few obscure, picturesque references to the afterlife, but he usually used Gehenna as his example of a place to be feared (eg. Mt. 5:29). Gehenna was a place on the outskirts of the Old City of Jerusalem where trash, and sometimes the bodies of crucified criminals, were burned......

Virgil and Plato, the Qur'an, medieval mystery plays, and medieval theologians were what fed Dante's imagination, not the Bible. To write his famous poem, Dante imagined the setting, characters, emotions, and drama that he wanted to create, and then set about fleshing it out with an elaborate compilation of myths and philosophies. The story he created was frightening, cinematic, and universal -- and it wouldn't have been any of those things if he'd simply used what the Bible has to say on the topic. In other words, hell has nine descending circles just like the devil has hooves and a tail.

So why do we continue to have such a fascination with the hell of Dante's imagination? It is certainly due to how Christians have embraced and preached it for centuries. The sad truth is that Dante's hellish vision has been useful in promoting colonizing, crusades and "conversions" for the last 700 years. But it is time for that to change. It is time for Christians, and all people of faith, to re-imagine the afterlife in less medieval terms.

--

Jon M. Sweeney is the author of Inventing Hell: Dante, the Bible, and Eternal Torment, just published by Hachette.
[/font][/color][/size][/just


You said: Hell Is a Myth -- Actually, a Bunch of Myths.

You have NEVER backed up any of your statements. Just once, back something up you say...prove Hell Is a Myth -- Actually, a Bunch of Myths.
All you do is spit things out about the Bible...you never prove a damn thing you claim to be fact.
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alj
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptyFri May 30, 2014 8:01 am

Domenic Pappalardo wrote:
alj wrote:
Interesting article and source:
Hell Is a Myth -- Actually, a Bunch of Myths

If I had the opportunity to meet Paul of Tarsus in the flesh, I'd take it in a heartbeat. I'd meet him on a sunny afternoon in June at one of those lovely places along the Via del Colosseo in Rome. I'd ask him questions about his pre-conversion life. .....

I'd also want to ask about the whole "Road to Damascus" thing. Did you really hear God's voice? Does God even have a "voice," and if so, what in the world does it sound like? ....

When the questions turned to more specifically religious and theological topics, I imagine Paul would have quick and ready answers. What did you really mean by "To live is Christ"? He would probably quip, Let me also refer you to a letter I once wrote to the church in Galatia (or Ephesus, etc.), where I dealt with that subject in greater detail. [Sounds like a familiar response to logical questions on this forum]

But if I were to ask St. Paul what he believes about hell, I'll bet he would give an uncharacteristically vague answer. Why? For the simple reason that to the nascent Christian church, even to Paul, hell barely existed. All they knew from the Hebrew scriptures was Sheol, which literally means "grave" and was believed to be the dusty deep place within the earth itself to which every soul traveled after death, accompanying its body. And of course Paul lived, wrote, and was martyred for the faith before any of the Gospels were written.

There were rumblings and speculations of an afterlife in the century of Christ, Philo, and Paul, but these came mostly from what was then pop culture: Greek and Roman mythology. The rumblings blossomed briefly and opaquely in the Gospels, and then at various points throughout late antiquity and the Middle Ages, including in the revelations to the Prophet Muhammad recorded in the Qur'an and again in the writings of the greatest theologian, Thomas Aquinas.

It was the Italian poet Dante Alighieri who changed everything with his famous Inferno, which he began writing in about 1306 CE. But to read the Inferno today is to realize how little it has to do with the Bible. There is more Greek and Roman mythology ― adapted by Dante from classics such as Hesiod's Theogony, Virgil's Aeneid, and Ovid'sMetamorphoses ― than there is scripture in Dante's nine circles of hell. Where Augustine had criticized writers like Virgil and Ovid, saying that Christians shouldn't read them, the pagan poet Virgil serves as Dante's expert tour guide through the upside-down cathedral of the Inferno. Using a bunch of philosophies and myths, we have Dante to thank for making eternal punishment exotic, real, and... Christian.



At this very moment, tourists are flocking to Florence hotels for "Dan Brown Packages," and one-day trips for "Dan Brown Tours," during which they visit key sites in the life of Dante featured in Brown's New York Times bestseller, Inferno.

But, you see, there was little agreement among Christians, before Dante, about the nature and extent of what we call hell. Ancient Judaism and the New Testament writers had very little to say on the subject. Jesus made a few obscure, picturesque references to the afterlife, but he usually used Gehenna as his example of a place to be feared (eg. Mt. 5:29). Gehenna was a place on the outskirts of the Old City of Jerusalem where trash, and sometimes the bodies of crucified criminals, were burned......

Virgil and Plato, the Qur'an, medieval mystery plays, and medieval theologians were what fed Dante's imagination, not the Bible. To write his famous poem, Dante imagined the setting, characters, emotions, and drama that he wanted to create, and then set about fleshing it out with an elaborate compilation of myths and philosophies. The story he created was frightening, cinematic, and universal -- and it wouldn't have been any of those things if he'd simply used what the Bible has to say on the topic. In other words, hell has nine descending circles just like the devil has hooves and a tail.

So why do we continue to have such a fascination with the hell of Dante's imagination? It is certainly due to how Christians have embraced and preached it for centuries. The sad truth is that Dante's hellish vision has been useful in promoting colonizing, crusades and "conversions" for the last 700 years. But it is time for that to change. It is time for Christians, and all people of faith, to re-imagine the afterlife in less medieval terms.

--

Jon M. Sweeney is the author of Inventing Hell: Dante, the Bible, and Eternal Torment, just published by Hachette
.


You said: Hell Is a Myth -- Actually, a Bunch of Myths.

You have NEVER backed up any of your statements. Just once, back something up you say...prove Hell Is a Myth -- Actually, a Bunch of Myths.
All you do is spit things out about the Bible...you never prove a damn thing you claim to be fact.
It helps if you read the first and last lines.
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Domenic Pappalardo
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Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from?   Where does the concelt of "Hell" come from? EmptyFri May 30, 2014 8:43 am

Oh, I see it's cut & paste again...I see why you became a teacher...it is the major lazy people take in school. It's one of those jobs where you need not be smart, after all, most adults are smarter than kids who's brains are still forming. It's call a Duh job.
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