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Medieval illustration of Hell in the Hortus deliciarum manuscript of Herrad of Landsberg (about 1180)
In many religious traditions, Hell is a place of suffering and punishment in the afterlife, often in the underworld. Religions with a linear divine history often depict Hell as endless (for example, see Hell in Christian beliefs). Religions with a cyclic history often depict Hell as an intermediary period between incarnations (for example, see Chinese Diyu).
Punishment in Hell typically corresponds to sins committed in life. Sometimes these distinctions are specific, with damned souls suffering for each wrong committed (see for example Plato's myth of Er or Dante's The Divine Comedy), and sometimes they are general, with sinners being relegated to one or more chamber of Hell or level of suffering. In Islam and Christianity, however, faith and repentance play a larger role than actions in determining a soul's afterlife destiny.
In Christianity and Islam, Hell is traditionally depicted as fiery and painful, inflicting guilt and suffering.[1] Some other traditions, however, portray Hell as cold and gloomy. Despite the common depictions of Hell as a fire, Dante's Inferno portrays the innermost (9th) circle of Hell as a frozen lake of blood and guilt.[2] Hell is often portrayed as populated with demons, who torment the damned. Many are ruled by a death god, such as Nergal or the Christian or Islamic Devil.
In contrast to Hell, other types of afterlives are abodes of the dead and paradises. Abodes of the dead are neutral places for all the dead (for example, see sheol) rather than prisons of punishment for sinners. A paradise is a happy afterlife for some or all the dead (for example, see heaven). Modern understandings of Hell often depict it abstractly, as a state of loss rather than as fiery torture literally underground.

Contents

Etymology and Germanic mythology

"Hel" (1889) by Johannes Gehrts.
The modern English word Hell is derived from Old English hel, helle (about 725 AD to refer to a nether world of the dead) reaching into the Anglo-Saxon pagan period, and ultimately from Proto-Germanic *halja, meaning "one who covers up or hides something".[3] The word has cognates in related Germanic languages such as Old Frisian helle, hille, Old Saxon hellja, Middle Dutch helle (modern Dutch hel), Old High German helle (Modern German Hölle), Norwegian and Swedish helvete (hel + Old Norse vitti, "punishment"), and Gothic halja[3]. Subsequently, the word was used to transfer a pagan concept to Christian theology and its vocabulary[3] (however, for the Judeo-Christian origin of the concept see Gehenna).
The English word hell has been theorized as being derived from Old Norse hel[3] but it the cognate does appear in all the other languages and has a Proto-Germanic origin[4]. Among other sources, the Poetic Edda, compiled from earlier traditional sources in the 13th century, and the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson, provide information regarding the beliefs of the Norse pagans, including a being named Hel, who is described as ruling over an underworld location of the same name. This is envisioned as a "misty" place (rather than the fire envisioned by Christianity) where go all women and in addition, some men. Punishment for wrong deeds is not mentioned.

Religion, mythology, and folklore

A vision of Hell from Dante’s Divine Comedy. Illustration by Gustave Doré.
Hell appears in several mythologies and religions. It is commonly inhabited by demons and the souls of dead people. Hell is often depicted in art and literature, perhaps most famously in Dante's Divine Comedy.

Polytheism

Ancient Egypt

With the rise of the cult of Osiris during the Middle Kingdom the “democratization of religion” offered to even his humblest followers the prospect of eternal life, with moral fitness becoming the dominant factor in determining a persons suitability. At death a person faced judgment by a tribunal of forty-two divine judges. If they led a life in conformance with the precepts of the Goddess Maat, who represented truth and right living, the person was welcomed into the Two Fields. If found guilty the person was thrown to a “devourer” and didn't share in eternal life.[5] The person who is taken by the devourer is subject first to terrifying punishment and then annihilated. These depictions of punishment may have influenced medieval perceptions of the inferno in hell via early Christian and Coptic texts.[6] Purification for those who are considered justified may be found in the descriptions of “Flame Island”, where they experience the triumph over evil and rebirth. For the dammed complete destruction into a state of non being awaits but there is no suggestion of eternal torture.[7][8] Divine pardon at judgement was always a central concern for the Ancient Egyptians.[9]

Greek

In classic Greek mythology, below Heaven, Earth, and Pontus is Tartarus, or Tartaros (Greek Τάρταρος, deep place). It is either a deep, gloomy place, a pit or abyss used as a dungeon of torment and suffering that resides within Hades (the entire underworld) with Tartarus being the hellish component. In the Gorgias, Plato (c. 400 BC) wrote that souls were judged after death and those who received punishment were sent to Tartarus. As a place of punishment, it can be considered a hell. The classic Hades, on the other hand, is more similar to Old Testament Sheol.

European

The hells of Europe include Breton Mythology's “Anaon”, Celtic Mythology's “Uffern”, Slavic mythology's "Peklo", the hell of Lapps Mythology and Ugarian Mythology's “Manala” that leads to annihilation. The hells in the Middle East include Sumerian Mythology's “Aralu”; the hells of Canaanite Mythology, Hittite Mythology and Mithraism; the weighing of the heart in Egyptian Mythology can lead to annihilation. The hells of Asia include Bagobo Mythology's “Gimokodan” and Ancient Indian Mythology's “Kalichi". African hells include Haida Mythology's “Hetgwauge” and the hell of Swahili Mythology. The hells of the Americas include Aztec Mythology's “Mictlan”, Inuit mythology's “Adlivun” and Yanomamo Mythology's “Shobari Waka”. The Oceanic hells include Samoan Mythology's “O le nu'u-o-nonoa” and the hells of Bangka Mythology and Caroline Islands Mythology.

American

In Maya mythology , Xibalbá is the dangerous underworld of nine levels ruled by the demons Vucub Caquix and Hun Came. The road into and out of it is said to be steep, thorny and very forbidding. Metnal is the lowest and most horrible of the nine Hells of the underworld, ruled by Ah Puch. Ritual healers would intone healing prayers banishing diseases to Metnal. Much of the Popol Vuh describes the adventures of the Maya Hero Twins in their cunning struggle with the evil lords of Xibalbá.
The Aztecs believed that the dead traveled to Mictlán, a neutral place found far to the north. There was also a legend of a place of white flowers, which was always dark, and was home to the gods of death, particularly Mictlantecutli and his spouse Mictlantecihuatl, which means literally "lords of Mictlán". The journey to Mictlán took four years, and the travelers had to overcome difficult tests, such as passing a mountain range where the mountains crashed into each other, a field where the wind carried flesh-scraping knives, and a river of blood with fearsome jaguars.

Abrahamic

Judaism

Daniel 12:2 proclaims "And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, Some to everlasting life, Some to shame and everlasting contempt." Judaism does not have a specific doctrine about the afterlife, but it does have a mystical/Orthodox tradition of describing Gehenna. Gehenna is not Hell, but rather a sort of Purgatory where one is judged based on his or her life's deeds, or rather, where one becomes fully aware of one's own shortcomings and negative actions during one's life. The Kabbalah explains it as a "waiting room" (commonly translated as an "entry way") for all souls (not just the wicked). The overwhelming majority of rabbinic thought maintains that people are not in Gehenna forever; the longest that one can be there is said to be 11 months, however there has been the occasional noted exception. Some consider it a spiritual forge where the soul is purified for its eventual ascent to Olam Habah (heb. עולם הבא; lit. "The world to come", often viewed as analogous to Heaven). This is also mentioned in the Kabbalah, where the soul is described as breaking, like the flame of a candle lighting another: the part of the soul that ascends being pure and the "unfinished" piece being reborn.
According to Jewish teachings, hell is not entirely physical; rather, it can be compared to a very intense feeling of shame. People are ashamed of their misdeeds and this constitutes suffering which makes up for the bad deeds. When one has so deviated from the will of God, one is said to be in gehinom. This is not meant to refer to some point in the future, but to the very present moment. The gates of teshuva (return) are said to be always open, and so one can align his will with that of God at any moment. Being out of alignment with God's will is itself a punishment according to the Torah. In addition, Subbotniks and Messianic Judaism believe in Gehenna, but Samaritans probably believe in a separation of the wicked in a shadowy existence, Sheol, and the righteous in heaven.

Christianity

The Christian doctrine of hell derives from the teaching of the New Testament, where hell is typically described using the Greek words Tartarus or Hades or the Arabic word Gehenna. These three terms have different meanings and must be recognized.
  • Tartarus occurs only once in the New Testament in II Peter 2:4 and is translated as a place of incarceration of demons. It mentions nothing about human souls being sent there in the afterlife.
  • Hades has similarities to the Old Testament term, Sheol as "the place of the dead", or in other words, the grave. Thus, it is used in reference to both the righteous and the wicked, since both wind up there eventually.[10]
  • Gehenna refers to the "Valley of Hinnon", which was a garbage dump outside of Jerusalem. It was a place where people burned their garbage and thus there was always a fire burning there. Bodies of those deemed to have died in sin without hope of salvation (such as people who committed suicide) were thrown there to be destroyed.[11] Gehenna is used in the New Testament as a metaphor for the final place of punishment for the wicked after the resurrection.[12]
In most Christian beliefs, such as the Catholic Church, most Protestant churches (such as the Baptists, Episcopalians, etc), and Greek Orthodox churches, Hell is taught as the final destiny of those who have not been found worthy after they have passed through the great white throne of judgment [13][14], where they will be punished for sin and permanently separated from God after the general resurrection and last judgment. The nature of this judgment is inconsistent, with many Protestant churches teaching the saving comes from accepted Jesus Christ as their savior, and the opposing view that the judgment hinges on both faith and works, the teaching of Greek Orthodox and Catholic Churches.
Some Christian theologians of the early Church and some of the modern Church subscribe to the doctrines of Conditional Immortality. Conditional Immortality is the belief that the soul dies with the body and does not live again until the resurrection. This is the view held by Orthodox Jews and a few Christian sects, such as the Living Church of God, The Church of God International, and Seventh Day Adventist Church.
Annihilationism is the belief that the soul is immortal but can be completely destroyed in Hell. This view is held by sects such as Jehovah's Witnesses.
Universal Reconciliation is the belief that all human souls (and even Demons) will be eventually reconciled with God and admitted to Heaven. This view is held by some Unitarian-Universalists.[15][16][17]

Islam

Muslims believe in jahannam (in Arabic: جهنم) (which is related to the Hebrew word gehinnom and resembles the versions of Hell in Christianity). In the Qur'an, the holy book of Islam, there are literal descriptions of the condemned in a fiery Hell, as contrasted to the garden-like Paradise (jannah) enjoyed by righteous believers.
In addition, Heaven and Hell are split into many different levels depending on the actions perpetrated in life, where punishment is given depending on the level of evil done in life, and good is separated into other levels depending on how well one followed God while alive. The gate of Hell is guarded by Maalik who is the leader of the angels assigned as the guards of hell also known as Zabaaniyah. The Quran states that the fuel of Hellfire is rocks/stones (idols) and human beings.
Although generally Hell is often portrayed as a hot steaming and tormenting place for sinners, there is one Hell pit which is characterized differently from the other Hell in Islamic tradition. Zamhareer is seen as the coldest and the most freezing Hell of all; yet its coldness is not seen as a pleasure or a relief to the sinners who committed crimes against God. The state of the Hell of Zamhareer is a suffering of extreme coldness, of blizzards, ice, and snow which no one on this earth can bear. The lowest pit of all existing Hells is the Hawiyah which is meant for the hypocrites and two-faced people who claimed to believe in Allah and His messenger by the tongue but denounced both in their hearts. Hypocrisy is considered to be one of the most dangerous sins, and so is Shirk. According to the Qur'an and Hadith, all those who have received and rejected Islamic teachings will go to Hell.[citation needed]

Bahá'í Faith

The Bahá'í Faith regards the conventional description of Hell (and heaven) as a specific place as symbolic.[18] Instead the Bahá'í writings describe Hell as a "spiritual condition" where remoteness from God is defined as Hell; conversely heaven is seen as a state of closeness to God.[18]

Eastern

Buddhism

Buddhism teaches that there are five (sometimes six) realms of rebirth, which can then be further subdivided into degrees of agony or pleasure. Of these realms, the hell realms, or Naraka, is the lowest realm of rebirth. Of the hell realms, the worst is Avīci or "endless suffering". The Buddha's disciple, Devadatta, who tried to kill the Buddha on three occasions, as well as create a schism in the monastic order, is said to have been reborn in the Avici Hell.
However, like all realms of rebirth, rebirth in the Hell realms is not permanent, though suffering can persist for eons before being reborn again. In the Lotus Sutra, the Buddha teaches that eventually even Devadatta will become a Buddha himself, emphasizing the temporary nature of the Hell realms. Thus, Buddhism teaches to escape the endless migration of rebirths (both positive and negative) through the attainment of Nirvana.
The Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha, according to the Ksitigarbha Sutra, made a great vow as a young girl to not reach Enlightenment until all beings were liberated from the Hell Realms or other unwholesome rebirths. In popular literature, Ksitigarbha travels to the Hell realms to teach and relieve beings of their suffering.

Hinduism

Yama's Court and Hell. The Blue figure is Yamaraja (The Hindu god of death) with his consort Yami and Chitragupta
17th century Painting from Government Museum, Chennai.
Early Vedic religion doesn't have a concept of Hell. Ṛg-veda mentions three realms, bhūr (the earth), svar (the sky) and bhuvas or antarikṣa (the middle area, i.e. air or atmosphere)). In later Hindu literature, especially the law books and Puranas, more realms are mentioned, including a realm similar to Hell, called naraka (in Devanāgarī: नरक). Yama as first born human (together with his twin sister Yamī) in virtue of precedence becomes ruler of men and a judge on their departure. Originally he resides in Heaven, but later, especially medieval traditions, mention his court in naraka.
In the law-books (smṛtis and dharma-sūtras, like the Manu-smṛti) naraka is a place of punishment for sins. It is a lower spiritual plane (called naraka-loka) where the spirit is judged, or partial fruits of karma affected in a next life. In Mahabharata there is a mention of the Pandavas going to Heaven and the Kauravas going to Hell. However for the small number of sins which they did commit in their lives, the Pandavas had to undergo hell for a short time. Hells are also described in various Puranas and other scriptures. Garuda Purana gives a detailed account of Hell, its features and enlists amount of punishment for most of the crimes like a modern day penal code.
It is believed that people who commit sins go to Hell and have to go through punishments in accordance with the sins they committed. The god Yamarāja, who is also the god of death, presides over Hell. Detailed accounts of all the sins committed by an individual are kept by Chitragupta, who is the record keeper in Yama's court. Chitragupta reads out the sins committed and Yama orders appropriate punishments to be given to individuals. These punishments include dipping in boiling oil, burning in fire, torture using various weapons, etc. in various Hells. Individuals who finish their quota of the punishments are reborn in accordance with their balance of karma. All created beings are imperfect and thus have at least one sin to their record; but if one has generally led a pious life, one ascends to svarga, a temporary realm of enjoinment similar to Paradise, after a brief period of expiation in Hell and before the next reincarnation according to the law of karma.

Taoism

Ancient Taoism had no concept of Hell, as morality was seen to be a man-made distinction and there was no concept of an immaterial soul. In its home country China, where Taoism adopted tenets of other religions, popular belief endows Taoist Hell with many deities and spirits who punish sin in a variety of horrible ways. This is also considered Karma for Taoism.

Chinese folk beliefs

A Chinese glazed earthenware sculpture of "Hell's torturer," 16th century, Ming Dynasty
Diyu (simplified Chinese: 地狱traditional Chinese: 地獄pinyin: DìyùWade-Giles: Ti-yü; literally "earth prison") is the realm of the dead in Chinese mythology. It is very loosely based upon the Buddhist concept of Naraka combined with traditional Chinese afterlife beliefs and a variety of popular expansions and re-interpretations of these two traditions. Ruled by Yanluo Wang, the King of Hell, Diyu is a maze of underground levels and chambers where souls are taken to atone for their earthly sins.
Incorporating ideas from Taoism and Buddhism as well as traditional Chinese folk religion, Diyu is a kind of purgatory place which serves not only to punish but also to renew spirits ready for their next incarnation. There are many deities associated with the place, whose names and purposes are the subject of much conflicting information.
The exact number of levels in Chinese Hell - and their associated deities - differs according to the Buddhist or Taoist perception. Some speak of three to four 'Courts', other as many as ten. The ten judges are also known as the 10 Kings of Yama. Each Court deals with a different aspect of atonement. For example, murder is punished in one Court, adultery in another. According to some Chinese legends, there are eighteen levels in Hell. Punishment also varies according to belief, but most legends speak of highly imaginative chambers where wrong-doers are sawn in half, beheaded, thrown into pits of filth or forced to climb trees adorned with sharp blades.
However, most legends agree that once a soul (usually referred to as a 'ghost') has atoned for their deeds and repented, he or she is given the Drink of Forgetfulness by Meng Po and sent back into the world to be reborn, possibly as an animal or a poor or sick person, for further punishment.

Zoroastrianism

Zoroastrianism has historically suggested several possible fates for the wicked, including annihilation, purgation in molten metal, and eternal punishment, all of which have standing in Zoroaster's writings. Zoroastrian eschatology includes the belief that wicked souls will remain in hell until, following the arrival of three saviors at thousand-year intervals, Ahura Mazda reconciles the world, destroying evil and resurrecting tormented souls to perfection.[19]
The sacred Gathas mention a “House of the Lie″ for those “that are of an evil dominion, of evil deeds, evil words, evil Self, and evil thought, Liars.”[20] However, the only Zoroastrian text that describes hell in detail is the Book of Arda Viraf.[21] It depicts particular punishments for particular sins—for instance, being trampled by cattle as punishment for neglecting the needs of work animals.[22]

Literature

"Dante And Virgil In Hell" (1850) by William-Adolphe Bouguereau.
In his Divina commedia ("Divine comedy"; set in the year 1300), Dante Alighieri employed the conceit of taking Virgil as his guide through Inferno (and then, in the second canticle, up the mountain of Purgatorio). Virgil himself is not condemned to Hell in Dante's poem but is rather, as a virtuous pagan, confined to Limbo just at the edge of Hell. The geography of Hell is very elaborately laid out in this work, with nine concentric rings leading deeper into the Earth and deeper into the various punishments of Hell, until, at the center of the world, Dante finds Satan himself trapped in the frozen lake of Cocytus. A small tunnel leads past Satan and out to the other side of the world, at the base of the Mount of Purgatory.
John Milton's Paradise Lost (1667) opens with the fallen angels, including their leader Satan, waking up in Hell after having been defeated in the war in heaven and the action returns there at several points throughout the poem. Milton portrays Hell as the abode of the demons, and the passive prison from which they plot their revenge upon Heaven through the corruption of the human race. 19th century French poet Arthur Rimbaud alluded to the concept as well in the title and themes of one of his major works, A Season In Hell. Rimbaud's poetry portrays his own suffering in a poetic form as well as other themes.
Many of the great epics of European literature include episodes that occur in Hell. In the Roman poet Virgil's Latin epic, the Aeneid, Aeneas descends into Dis (the underworld) to visit his father's spirit. The underworld is only vaguely described, with one unexplored path leading to the punishments of Tartarus, while the other leads through Erebus and the Elysian Fields.
The idea of Hell was highly influential to writers such as Jean-Paul Sartre who authored the 1944 play "No Exit" about the idea that "Hell is other people". Although not a religious man, Sartre was fascinated by his interpretation of a Hellish state of suffering. C.S. Lewis's The Great Divorce (1945) borrows its title from William Blake's Marriage of Heaven and Hell (1793) and its inspiration from the Divine Comedy as the narrator is likewise guided through Hell and Heaven. Hell is portrayed here as an endless, desolate twilight city upon which night is imperceptibly sinking. The night is actually the Apocalypse, and it heralds the arrival of the demons after their judgment. Before the night comes, anyone can escape Hell if they leave behind their former selves and accept Heaven's offer, and a journey to Heaven reveals that Hell is infinitely small; it is nothing more or less than what happens to a soul that turns away from God and into itself.
Piers Anthony in his series Incarnations of Immortality portrays examples of Heaven and Hell via Death, Fate, Nature, War, Time, Good-God, and Evil-Devil. Robert A. Heinlein offers a yin-yang version of Hell where there is still some good within; most evident in his book Job: A Comedy of Justice. Lois McMaster Bujold uses her five Gods 'Father, Mother, Son, Daughter and Bastard' in The Curse of Chalion with an example of Hell as formless chaos. Michael Moorcock is one of many who offer Chaos-Evil-(Hell) and Uniformity-Good-(Heaven) as equally unacceptable extremes which must be held in balance; in particular in the Elric and Eternal Champion series.

Biblical words translated as "Hell"

Sheol
In the King James Bible, the Old Testament term Sheol is translated as "Hell" 31 times.[23] However, Sheol was translated as "the grave" 31 other times.[24] Sheol is also translated as "the pit" three times.[25]
Modern translations, however, do not translate Sheol as "Hell" at all, instead rendering it "the grave," "the pit," or "death." See Intermediate state‎.
Gehenna
In the New Testament, both early (i.e. the KJV) and modern translations often translate Gehenna as "Hell."[26] Young's Literal Translation is one notable exception, simply using "Gehenna", which was in fact a geographic location just outside Jerusalem (the Valley of Hinnom).
Tartarus
Appearing only in II Peter 2:4 in the New Testament, both early and modern translations often translate Tartarus as "Hell." Again, Young's Literal Translation is an exception, using "Tartarus".
Hades
Hades is the Greek word traditionally used for the Hebrew word Sheol in such works as the Septuagint, the Greek translations of the Hebrew Bible. Like other first-century Jews literate in Greek, Christian writers of the New Testament followed this use. While earlier translations most often translated Hades as "hell", as does the King James Version, modern translations use the transliteration "Hades"[27] or render the word as allusions "to the grave" [28], "among the dead"[29], "place of the dead"[30] and many other like statements in other verses. In Latin, Hades could be translated as Purgatorium (Purgatory in English use) after about 1200 A.D.[31], but no modern English translations Hades to Purgatory. See Intermediate state‎.
Abaddon
The Hebrew word Abaddon, meaning "destruction", is sometimes used as a synonym of Hell.[32]
Infernus
The Latin word infernus means "being underneath" and is often translated as "Hell".

See also

References

  1. ^ Numerous verses in the Qu'ran and New Testament.
  2. ^ Alighieri, Dante (June 2001 (orig. trans. 1977)) [c. 1315]. "Cantos XXXI-XXXIV". Inferno. trans. John Ciardi (2 ed.). New York: Penguin. 
  3. ^ a b c d Barnhart, Robert K. (1995) The Barnhart Concise Dictionary of Etymology, page 348. Harper Collins ISBN 0062700847
  4. ^ http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?search=hell&searchmode=none
  5. ^ Religion and Magic in Ancient Egypt”, Rosalie David, p158-159, Penguin, 2002, ISBN 0-14-0262252-0
  6. ^ ”The Essential Guide to Egyptian Mythology: The Oxford Guide”, “Hell”, p161-162, Jacobus Van Dijk, Berkley Reference, 2003, ISBN 0-425-19096-X
  7. ^ ”The Divine Verdict”, John Gwyn Griffiths, p233, BRILL, 1991, ISBN 9004092315
  8. ^ see also letter by Prof. Griffith to “The Independent”, 32 December 1993 [1]
  9. ^ "Egyptian Religion", Jan Assman, The Encyclopedia of Christianity, p77, vol2, Wm. B Eerdmans Publishing, 1999, ISBN 90041 16958
  10. ^ Unger, Merrill F. (1981). Unger's Bible Dictionary. Chicago: Moody Bible Institute, The. pp. 467. 
  11. ^ The New Schaf-Herzog Encyclopedia of religious Knowledge pg. 415
  12. ^ The New Schaf-Herzog Encyclopedia of religious Knowledge pgs. 414-415
  13. ^ Revelation 20:11
  14. ^ Romans 6:23
  15. ^ New Bible Dictionary, "Hell", InterVarsity Press, 1996.
  16. ^ New Dictionary of Biblical Theology, "Hell", InterVarsity Press, 2000.
  17. ^ Evangelical Alliance Commission on Truth and Unity Among Evangelicals, The Nature of Hell, Paternoster, 2000.
  18. ^ a b Masumian, Farnaz (1995). Life After Death: A study of the afterlife in world religions. Oxford: Oneworld Publications. ISBN 1-85168-074-8. 
  19. ^ Meredith Sprunger. "An Introduction to Zoroastrianism". http://www.ubfellowship.org/archive/readers/601_zoroastrianism.htm. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  20. ^ Yasna 49:11, "Avesta: Yasna". http://www.avesta.org/yasna/y47to50b.htm. Retrieved 2008-10-11. 
  21. ^ Eileen Gardiner (2006-02-10). "About Zoroastrian Hell". http://www.hell-on-line.org/AboutZOR.html#The%20Fate%20of%20the%20Soul. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  22. ^ Chapter 75, "The Book of Arda Viraf". http://www.avesta.org/pahlavi/viraf.html. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  23. ^ Deut. 32:22, Deut. 32:36a & 39, II Sam. 22:6, Job 11:8, Job 26:6, Psalm 9:17, Psalm 16:10, Psalm 18:5, Psalm 55:15, Psalm 86:13, Ps. 116:3, Psalm 139:8, Prov. 5:5, Prov. 7:27, Prov. 9:18, Prov. 15:11, Prov. 15:24, Prov. 23:14, Prov. 27:20, Isa. 5:14, Isa. 14:9, Isa. 14:15, Isa. 28:15, Isa. 28:18, Isa. 57:9, Ezek. 31:16, Ezek. 31:17, Ezek. 32:21, Ezk. 32:27, Amos 9:2, Jonah 2:2, Hab. 2:5
  24. ^ Gen. 37:35, Gen. 42:38, Gen. 44:29, Gen. 44:31, I Sam. 2:6, I Kings 2:6, I Kings 2:9, Job 7:9, Job 14:13, Job 17:13, Job 21:13, Job 24:19, Psalm 6:5, Psalm 30:3, Psalm 31:17, Psalm 49:14, Psalm 49:14, Psalm 49:15, Psalm 88:3, Psalm 89:48, Prov. 1:12, Prov. 30:16, Ecc. 9:10, Song 8:6, Isa. 14:11, Isa. 38:10, Isa. 38:18, Ezek. 31:15, Hosea 13:14, Hosea 13:14, Psalm 141:7
  25. ^ Num. 16:30, Num. 16:33, Job 17:16
  26. ^ Mat. 5:29, Mat. 5:30, Matt. 10:28, Matt. 23:15, Matt. 23:33, Mark 9:43, Mark 9:45, Mark 9:47, Luke 12:5, Matt. 5:22, Matt. 18:9, Jas. 3:6
  27. ^ [Acts 2:27, New American Standard Bible]
  28. ^ [Acts 2:27, New International Version]
  29. ^ [Acts 2:27, New Living Translation]
  30. ^ [Luke 16:23, New Living Translation]
  31. ^ [Catholic for a Reason, edited by Scott Hahn & Leon Suprenant, copyright 1998 by Emmaus Road Publishing, Inc., chapter by Curtis Martin, pg 294-295]
  32. ^ Roget's Thesaurus, VI.V.2, "Hell"

Further reading

  • Jonathan Edwards, The Justice of God in the Damnation of Sinners. Diggory Press, ISBN 978-1846856723
  • Thomas Boston, Hell. Diggory Press, ISBN 978-1846857485
  • John Bunyan, A Few Sighs from Hell (Or The Groans of the Damned Soul). Diggory Press, ISBN 978-1846857270
  • Metzger, Bruce M. (ed); , Michael D. Coogan (ed) (1993). The Oxford Companion to the Bible. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-504645-5. 

External links


Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Medieval illustration of Hell in the Hortus deliciarum manuscript of Herrad of Landsberg (about 1180)
Hell is an afterlife concept found in many religions or spiritual philosophies. In many religions, Hell is where sinners spend eternity in the afterlife.

Contents

Sourced

  • Tros Anchisiade, facilis descensus Auerno:
    Noctes atque dies patet atri ianua Ditis;
    Sed reuocare gradum superasque euadere ad auras,
    Hoc opus, hic labor est. .Pauci, quos aequus amauit.
    • It is easy to go down to hell; Night and Day the Gates of Dark Death stand wide; But to climb back up again, to retrace ones steps to the open air, there lies the problem, the difficult task.
    • Virgil, The Aeneid, Book VI
  • Quisque suos patimur manis.
    • Each of us bears his own Hell.
    • Virgil, The Aeneid, Book VI, 743
  • Now the devil that told me I did well
    Says that this deed is chronicled in hell.^ Proverbs 5: 5: "her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ "Her feet go down to death, her steps take hold of Sheol."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ Virgil says: "The gates of Hell are open night and day; Smooth the descent, and easy is the way."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .
  • You, mistress,
    That have the office opposite to Saint Peter,
    And keeps the gate of hell!^ "And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .
  • Just as seeing Heaven's light gave him an awareness of God's presence in all things in the mortal plane, so it has made him aware of God's absence in all things in Hell.^ If the account be a history it must not militate against the promise of "The restitution of all things spoken by the mouth of all God's holy prophets since the world began."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ And it was not an infinite Devil, but a just and merciful God who was accused of having committed all this infernal cruelty.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ "The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    • Ted Chiang, "Hell Is the Absence of God", in Starlight 3, 2001.

Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895)

Reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895).
.
  • What will you do in a world where the Holy Spirit never strives; where every soul is fully left to its own depravity; and where there is no leisure for repentance, if there were even the desire, but where there is too much present pain to admit repentance; where they gnaw their tongues with pain, and blaspheme the God of heaven?^ By supposing the term Hell to denote a condition now in the present life, there is no absurdity involved.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ If the account be a history it must not militate against the promise of "The restitution of all things spoken by the mouth of all God's holy prophets since the world began."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ And they shall bury them in Tophet, till there be no place to bury.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    • James Hamilton, p. .311.
  • An immortality of pain and tears; an infinity of wretchedness and despair; the blackness of darkness across which conscience will forever shoot her clear and ghastly flashes, — like lightning streaming over a desert when midnight and tempest are there; weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth; long, long eternity, and things that will make eternity seem longer, — making each moment seem eternity, — oh, miserable condition of the damned!^ Some wandered lonely in the desert flames, And some in fell encounter fiercely met, With curses loud, and blasphemies, that made The cheek of darkness pale; and as they fought, And cursed, and gnashed their teeth, and wished to die Their hollow eyes did utter streams of wo.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

  • The Lamb is, indeed, the emblem of love; but what so terrible as the wrath of the Lamb? The depth of the mercy despised is the measure of the punishment of him that despiseth. .No more fearful words than those of the Saviour.^ Were they faithful to their mission to say no more than this on so vital a theme as an endless Hell, if they intended to teach it?
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ Gehenna was a well-known locality near Jerusalem, and ought no more to be translated Hell, than should Sodom or Gomorrah.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    The threatenings of the law were temporal, those of the gospel are eternal. .It is Christ who reveals the never-dying worm, the unquenchable fire, and He who contrasts with the eternal joys of the redeemed the everlasting woes of the lost.^ To them and therefore on the lips of our blessed Savior who addressed it to them, it means not a material and everlasting fire, but an intermediate, a metaphorical and a terminal retribution."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ This explains the "unquenchable fire" and the "undying worm."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    His loving arms would enfold the whole human race, but not while impenitent or unbelieving; the benefits of His redemption are conditional.
  • Many might go to heaven with half the labor they go to hell, if they would venture their industry the right way.^ "Though they dig into Hell, thence shall my hand take them; though they climb up to heaven, thence will I bring them down."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

  • The longer men sin, the more easily they can; for every act of transgression weakens conscience, stupefies intellect, hardens hearts, adds force to bad habits, and takes force from good example. .And, surely, there is nothing in such associations; as wicked affinities will insure to the sinner in the future state, to incline him to repentance.^ From the few traces which remain to us of this age, it seems that the idea of future punishment, such as it was among the Jews, was associated with that of darkeness, and not of fire; and that among those of Palestine, the misery of the wicked was supposed to consist rather in privation, than in positive infliction.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ Archbishop Whately: "As for a future state of retribution in another world, Moses said nothing to the Israelites about that."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ Would he not have repeatedly warned sinners against it were there such a place?
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

  • The mind is its own place, and in itself
    Can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.

Unsourced

  • Hell is an eternity spent with your friends.
    • Unknown
  • A clergyman earns his living by assuring idiots that he can save them from an imaginary hell.
  • A civilized society looks with horror upon the abuse and torture of children or adults. Even where capital punishment is practiced, the aim is to implement it as mercifully as possible. .Are we to believe then that a holy God - our heavenly Father - is less just than the courts of men?^ As though he had said: "If, as is believed by some, God spared not the angels that sinned, do not let us who sin, mortal men, expect to escape."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .
    • Sidney Hatch
  • A man cannot be happy who believes in hell, any more than he can sweeten his coffee with a pickle.^ "Yea, also because he transgresseth by wine, he is a proud man neither keepeth at home, who enlargeth his desire as Hell and is as death, and cannot be satisfied."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ Were they faithful to their mission to say no more than this on so vital a theme as an endless Hell, if they intended to teach it?
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ The Hebrew term translated hell in the text does not seem to mean, with any certainty, anything more than the state of the dead in their deep abode."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .
    • Lemuel K. Washburn
  • According to Christianity, eternal suffering awaits anyone who questions God's infinite love.^ And it was not an infinite Devil, but a just and merciful God who was accused of having committed all this infernal cruelty.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    That's the message we're brought up with: believe or die. "Thank you, forgiving Lord, for all those options!" .
  • Again I ask whence it happened that the fall of Adam involved, without remedy, in eternal death so many nations, together with their infant children, except because it so seemed good to God?^ "The wicked shall turn back, even to hell, to death or to the grave, all nations forgetful of God.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    A decree horrible, I confess, and yet true.
  • Ah! .I have lost my freedom, and hell is now beginning.^ Campbell well says: * * "In my judgment, it ought never in Scripture to be rendered Hell, at least, in the sense wherein that word is now universally understood by Christians.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .
  • All the meanness, all the revenge, all the selfishness, all the cruelty, all the hatred, all the infamy of which the heart of man is capable, grew, blossomed and bore fruit in this one word, Hell.^ The English word Hell grew into its present meaning.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ If it mean such a place no one can escape believing that it is a place of literal fire, and all the modern talk of a Hell of conscience is most erroneous.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ The scattering and destruction of the Israelites, in this world, is the meaning of fire in the lowest hell, as any reader can see by carefully consulting the chapter containing this first instance of the use of the word.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .
  • An idea, which has terrified millions, claims that some of us will go to a place called Hell, where we will suffer eternal torture.^ "Hell, any place, or some place covered over.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ Does the Hell of the Bible denote a place of torment, or a condition of suffering without end, to begin at death?
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ The word cannot be translated by the term Hell, for that would make Jacob expect to go to a place of torment, and prove that the Savior of the world, David, Jonah, etc., were once sufferers in the prison-house of the damned.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .This does not scare me because, when I try to imagine a Mind behind this universe, I cannot conceive that Mind, usually called "God," as totally mad.^ I cannot conceive of a more striking evidence of the fact that the doctrine is not of God.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    I mean, guys, compare that "God" with the worst monsters you can think of - Adolph Hitler, Joe Stalin, that sort of guy. None of them ever inflicted more than finite pain on their victims. Even de Sade, in his sado-masochistic fantasy novels, never devised an unlimited torture. .The idea that the Mind of Creation (if such exists) wants to torture some of its critters for endless infinities of infinities seems too absurd to take seriously.^ It seems incredible that a wise and benevolent God should have created or permitted any kind of an endless hell in his universe.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    Such a deranged Mind could not create a mud hut, much less the exquisitely mathematical universe around us.
  • And yet this same Deity says to me, "resist not evil; pray for those that despitefully use you; love your enemies, but I will eternally damn mine." It seems to me that even gods should practice what they preach.
  • As a tot I was given the usual terrifying mixed message:
    a) God is love; and
    b) If you don't believe how much he loves you, you will stand in the corner for eternity. .
  • Better to reign in hell, than serve in heav'n.^ And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into Hell-fire."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ "And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into Hell-fire.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

  • Eskimo: "If I did not know about God and sin, would I go to hell?"
    Priest: "No, not if you did not know."
    Eskimo: "Then why did you tell me?"
  • Father of Mercies! .Why from silent earth didst thou awake and curse me into birth, tear me from quiet, banish me from night, and make a thankless present of thy light, push into being a reverse of thee and animate a clod with misery?^ Didst thou awake and curse me into birth, Tear me from quiet, banish me from night, And make a thankless present of Thy light, Push into being a reverse of Thee And animate a clod with misery?
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ "If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there; if I make my bed in Hell, behold, thou art there."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ "For the Grave (Sheol, Hadees) cannot praise thee; death cannot celebrate thee; they that go down into the pit cannot hope for thy truth."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

  • For a plot hatched in hell, don't expect angels for witnesses. .
    • Attorney Robert Perry, making summation to trial of John DeLorean
  • Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company.^ "If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there; if I make my bed in Hell, behold, thou art there."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .
  • God cannot send to eternal pain a man who has done something toward improving the condition of his fellow-man.^ In this life and in the next, sin and woe are forever coupled together, God has joined them, and man cannot put them asunder."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ Fear not those who can only torture you-man-but fear God who can annihilate (apokteino.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ Fear the might power of God who could if he chose, annihilate man while the worst that men could do would be to destroy the mere animal life.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .If he can, I had rather go to hell than to heaven and keep company with such a god.^ No one is said to have gone to such a place as is now denoted by the word Hell, or to be going to it, or saved from it, or exposed to it.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into Hell-fire."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ "And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into Hell-fire.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    .
  • God is dead and no one cares.^ "The dead can no more give thanks to God nor celebrate his praise among the living on earth, etc."
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    If there is a hell, I'll see you there.
  • God says do what you wish, but make the wrong choice and you will be tortured for eternity in hell. That sir, is not free will. It would be akin to a man telling his girlfriend, do what you wish, but if you choose to leave me, I will track you down and blow your brains out. When a man says this we call him a psychopath and cry out for his imprisonment/execution. When god says the same we call him "loving" and build churches in his honor.
    • William C. Easttom II
  • God so loved the world that he made up his mind to damn a large majority of the human race.
  • Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned, Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned
    • often quoted as: "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned"
    • William Congreve, The Mourning Bride
  • Hell is an outrage on humanity. When you tell me that your Deity made you in his own image, I reply that he must have been very ugly.
  • Hell is where cowards have sent heroes.
    • Lemuel K. Washburn, from Is The Bible Worth Reading And Other Essays
  • Hell is sin fully developed, —a man’s own soul permitted to go to extreme limits with that which it now carries out in a mitigated form, and so, becoming like a furnace heated seven times hotter than usual, tormenting itself beyond all power of imagination.
  • Hell: A cooking stove which heats the sacerdotal sauce-pan here below. It was founded on behalf of our priests, to the end that the latter may never be wanting in good cheer.
  • Hell is repetition.
    • Storm of the Century [1]
  • Hell would be ending up on an episode of Celebrity Fear Factor in a worm eating contest with Anna Nicole Smith!
  • How anyone can believe in eternal punishment, or in any soul which God has made being "lost" and also believes in the love, nay, even in the justice of God is a mystery indeed.
    • C.G. Montefiore
  • I am not afraid of any god in the universe who would send me or any other man or woman to hell. If there were such a being, he would not be a god; he would be a devil.
  • I am the way into the city of woe,
I am the way to a forsaken people, I am the way into eternal sorrow. Sacred justice moved my architecture, I was raised here by Divine omnipotence, Primordial love, And ultimate intellect. Only those elements time cannot wear were made before me, And beyond time I stand. Abandon all hope ye who enter here.
  • I cannot help thinking that the menace of Hell makes as many devils as the severe penal codes of inhuman humanity make villains.
  • I care little in the existence of a heaven or hell; self respect does not allow me to guide my acts with an eye toward heavenly salvation or hellish punishment. All our acts should originate from the spring of unselfish love, whether there be a continuation after death or not.
    • Heinrich Hein
  • I died in Hell - (They called it Passchendaele).
  • I do not consider it a sign of divine love to consign to hell people who live good lives but make an honest mistake in belief.
    • Moshe Shulman
  • I have lately taken to read the New Testament which I assure you is a very good book; but there is one article to which I cannot accede; it is that of the eternity of punishment. I cannot comprehend how this eternity is compatible with the goodness of God!
    • La Fontaine (1621-1695)
  • I know it isn't the fetus's fault, but the mother shouldn't have had an abortion if she didn't want the baby to go to hell.
    • Jim Staal, net.fundie.idiot
  • I read in the Gospels that Jesus forgave the men who nailed him to the cross. He even promised "this day you shall be with me in paradise" to a thief crucified next to him - a thief who addressed Jesus simply as a "man" rather than as "the son of God." Yet, today, this same Jesus cannot forgive my kindly old aunt and allow her to dwell in paradise, simply because her "beliefs" do not match Reverend So-and-So's?
    • Arthur Silver
  • I will call no being good, who is not what I mean when I apply that epithet to my fellow-creatures; and if such a being can sentence me to hell for not so calling him, to hell I will go.
  • I would not for my life destroy one star of human hope, but I want it so that when a poor woman rocks the cradle and sings a lullaby to the dimpled darling, she will not be compelled to believe that ninety-nine chances in a hundred she is raising kindling wood for hell.
  • If I cannot prevail upon heaven, I shall move hell.
    • Virgil (spoken by Juno in The Aeneid)
  • If the fundamentalists are right, then all the cool people are in Hell!
    • Jeffery Jay Lowder
  • If thinking freely for yourself is a sure ticket to hell, then the conversations in heaven must be awfully boring.
    • Dr. Weirde
  • If you love your neighbors as yourself, yes, even if you have just a little bit of human love and are not solely a selfish wretch, how could you have a single happy moment in heaven, knowing that contemporaneously with your blessed estate continues the endless torment and agony of innumerable millions of the accursed?
    • John Persone, Swedish Lutheran Bishop
  • If you're going to go through hell... I suggest you come back learning something.
  • I'm not a bad guy! I work hard, and I love my kids. So why should I spend half my Sunday hearing about how I'm going to Hell?
    • Homer Simpson, The Simpsons
  • It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse. It is obviously much easier to find inhabitants for an inferno or even a purgatorio.
  • It serves no purpose to man if there is no room for repentance, and he who is tormented can never grow better.
    • Thomas Burnet, "A Treatise Concerning the State of Departed Souls"
  • If you're going through hell... keep going!
  • Imagine there's no heaven. It's easy if you try. No hell below us, Above us, only sky.
  • It is Hell, of course, that makes priests powerful, not Heaven, for after thousands of years of so-called civilization fear remains the one common denominator of mankind.
  • Kill them all. God will select those who should go to heaven and those who should go to hell.
    • Abbot Arnold de Citeaux, 1205
  • L'enfer, c'est les autres.
  • ...little children who have begun to live in their mothers' womb and have there died, or who, having just been born, have passed away from the world without the sacrament of holy baptism... must be punished by the eternal torture of undying fire.
    • Hell, A Christian Doctrine
  • Nothing could add to the horror of hell, except the presence of its creator, God. While I have life, as long as I draw breath, I shall deny with all my strength, and hate with every drop of my blood, this infinite lie.
  • Oh, threats of Hell and Hopes of Paradise!
    One thing at least is certain: This life flies.
    One thing is certain and the rest is lies;
    the flower that once has blown forever dies.
  • One of the things that most pains and torments these Japanese is that we teach them that the prison of hell is irrevocably shut. For they grieve over the fate of their departed children, of their parents and relatives; and they often show their grief by their tears. So they ask us if there is any hope... .and I am obliged to answer that there is absolutely none. The grief at this affects and torments them wonderfully; they almost pine away with sorrow... .I can hardly restrain my tears sometimes at seeing many so dear to my heart suffer such intense pain about a thing which is already done with and can never be undone.
    • St. Francis Xavier, a Roman Catholic missionary to Japan, 1552
  • Punishments of unreasonable severity, especially where indiscriminately afflicted, have less effect in preventing crimes, and amending the manners of a people, than such as are more merciful in general, yet properly intermixed with due distinctions of severity.
    • William Blackstone, on whether the doctrine of Hell was an effective deterrent to crime, 1769
  • So behold here the triumph: God's wisdom has won. Behold here the damage that can't be undone. Stagnation is good, and we're good to the core, while faith rots us like salt rots the land. If your god helps the helpless, may he help you all well. I'm bound for the outside to find my own hell. If defiance means death, I would die before stand like a sheep to be thrown to God's hand.
    • Julia Ecklar
  • So revolting to my moral nature is the creed of eternal punishment that it, more than any other cause, produces the most widespread unbelief. Compared with this, all objections to Christianity fade to insignificance.
    • Loren Anderson
  • Some conservative Christians argue in favor of hell by calling it "God's great compliment." "Compliment?" If hell is such a "compliment" then what does God do when he wants to "insult" somebody?
    • Ed Babinski
  • Somebody once wrote: 'Hell is the impossibility of reason.' That's what this place feels like. Hell.
  • Speaking on the teaching of Hell, if there is anything consistent among orthodox and traditional teachers on the subject, it would be their inconsistencies and contradictions.
    • Gary Amirault
  • Strange... a God who mouths Golden Rules and forgiveness, then invented Hell; who mouths morals to other people and has none himself; who frowns upon crimes yet commits them all; who created man without invitation, then tries to shuffle the responsibility for man's acts upon man, instead of honorably placing it where it belongs, upon himself; and finally with altogether divine obtuseness, invites this poor, abused slave to worship him!
  • Tell me there is a God in the serene heavens that will damn his children for the expression of an honest belief! More men have died in their sins, judged by your orthodox creeds, than there are leaves on all the forests in the wide world ten thousand times over. Tell me these men are in hell; that these men are in torment; that these children are in eternal pain, and that they are to be punished forever and forever! I denounce this doctrine as the most infamous of lies.
  • That any should suffer forever, lingering on in hopeless despair, and rolling amidst infinite torments without the possibility of alleviation and without end; that since God can save men and will save a part, he has not proposed to save all-these are real, not imaginary, difficulties... My whole soul pants for light and relief on these questions. But I get neither; and in the distress and anguish of my own spirit, I confess that I see no light whatever. I see not one ray to disclose to me why sin came into the world; why the earth is strewn with the dying and the dead; and why man must suffer to all eternity. I have never seen a particle of light thrown on these subjects, that has given a moment's ease to my tortured min... I confess, when I look on a world of sinners and sufferers-upon death-beds and grave-yards-upon the world of woe filled with hosts to suffer for ever: when I see my friends, my family, my people, my fellow citizens when I look upon a whole race, all involved in this sin and danger-and when I see the great mass of them wholly unconcerned, and when I feel that God only can save them, and yet he does not do so, I am stuck dumb. It is all dark, dark, dark to my soul, and I cannot disguise it.
  • That the saints may enjoy their beatitude and the grace of God more abundantly they are permitted to see the punishment of the damned in hell.
  • The difficulty over the question of eternal torments lies in how it is irreconcilable with the goodness of God, to put any persons at all upon a necessity of making such an option, wherein if they choose amiss, the misery they incur must be irrevocable.
    • Samuel Clarke
  • The gods have never bothered much about judging the souls of the dead, and so people only go to hell if that's where they believe, in their deepest heart, that they deserve to go. Which they won't do if they don't know about it. This explains why it is so important to shoot missionaries on sight.
  • The good Christian should beware of mathematicians... The danger already exists that mathematicians have made a covenant with the devil to darken the spirit and confine man in the bonds of Hell.
  • The fundamentalist belief system is one that purports to have all the answers. It also claims to be the only way — all deviations lead to hell. It follows then that parents who believe this would be very concerned about what their children believe. Any alternative ways of thinking about major life questions would be highly threatening. Consequently, the fundamentalist household rarely encourages children to explore their own thoughts, to be open-minded about ideas, or to come to their own conclusions. In fact, fundamentalist parents are typically vocal in their opposition to the teaching of critical thinking skills or values clarification in schools.
    • Marlene Winell, Leaving the Fold
  • The idea that a good God would send people to a burning Hell is utterly damnable to me. The ravings of insanity! Superstition gone to seed! I don't want to have anything to do with such a God. No avenging Jewish God, no satanic devil, no fiery hell is of any interest to me.
    • Luther Burbank
  • The Puritan is simply one who, because of mental cowardice or religious superstition, is unable to get any joy out of the satisfaction of his natural appetites. Taking a drink, he fears that he is headed for the gutter. Grabbing a gal, he is staggered by thoughts of hell and syphilis. Observing that other men do such things innocently, he hates them.
  • The only thing that makes life endurable in this world is human love, and yet, according to Christianity, that is the very thing that we are not to have in the other world. We are to be so taken up with Jesus and angels, that we shall care nothing about our brothers and sisters that have been damned. We shall be so carried away with the music of the harp that we shall not even hear the wail of father and mother. Such a religion is a disgrace to human nature.
  • The whole point of Christianity is that everyone in the world, from Charles Manson to Mother Teresa, deserves to go to hell.
    • Sean P. Ningen
  • There are no physicists in the hottest parts of hell, because the existence of a "hottest part" implies a temperature difference, and any marginally competent physicist would immediately use this to run a heat engine and make some other part of hell comfortably cool.
  • There is no Heaven, there is no Hell; These are the dreams of baby minds; Tools of the wily Fetisheer, To fright the fools his cunning blinds.
  • There were days when the Church could club men into obedience by preaching Hell to them, but that day has long passed. The world has outgrown it.
    • John G. Lake
  • They say that when god was in Jerusalem he forgave his murderers, but now he will not forgive an honest man for differing with him on the subject of the Trinity. They say that God says to me, "Forgive your enemies." I say, "I do;" but he says, "I will damn mine." God should be consistent. If he wants me to forgive my enemies he should forgive his. I am asked to forgive enemies who can hurt me. God is only asked to forgive enemies who cannot hurt him. He certainly ought to be as generous as he asks us to be.
  • Those people who tell me that I'm going to hell while while they are going to heaven somehow make me very glad that we're going to separate destinations.
    • Martin Terman
  • This isn't hell, but you can see it from here.
    • The Crow Graphic Novel
  • [We are] among murderers. We are in hell, my dear, there is never a mistake and people are not damned for nothing.
  • We want ... to plunge into the depths of the abyss, Hell or Heaven, what does it matter? Into the depths of the Unknown to find something new!
  • When all has been considered, it seems to me to be the irresistible intuition that infinite punishment for finite sin would be unjust, and therefore wrong. We feel that even weak and erring Man would shrink from such an act. And we cannot conceive of God as acting on a lower standard of right and wrong.
  • When I see what the actual condition of the neglected and downtrodden races of men has been; if I thought that in addition to all this there was a God who stood at door where men go out of life to crush them downward into eternal hell - every instinct of charity, of sympathy and of love that is in me would stand crying. It would be the sorrow of the universe that would raise this cry.
  • When you die you go to heaven. Until then, welcome to hell!
    • Popular welcoming words in the Swedish army
  • Who will say with confidence that sexual abuse is more permanently damaging to children than threatening them with the eternal and unquenchable fires of hell?
  • Who would dare so much as to smile, if he really believed endless torments were certain to be the portion of some members of his household. Marriage would be a crime; each birth the occasion of an awful dread. The shadow of a possible Hell would darken every home, sadden every family hearth. All this becomes evident when we reflect, that to perpetuate the race would be to help on the perpetuation of moral evil. For if this creed be true, out of all the yearly births a stady current is flowing on to help fill the abyss of hell, to make larger and vaster the total moral evil which is to endure forever. 'The world would be one vast madhouse' says the American scholar Hallsted, 'if realizing and continued pressure of such a doctrine was present.'
    • Thomas Allin, Christ Triumphant, p. 57
  • Why were a few, or a single one, made at all, if only to exist in order to be made eternally miserable, which is infinitely worse than non-existence?
  • You are going to see again the child that was condemned to hell. See! it is a pitiful sight. The little child is in this red hot oven. Hear the fire! It beats its head against the roof of the oven. It stamps its little feet on the floor. You can see on the face of this little child what you see on the faces of all in hell: despair, desperate and horrible. This child sinned, so God, in His mercy, called it out of the world in its early childhood.
    • from Tracts for Spiritual Reading, 1880, a Catholic Children's book.
  • You've got a Methodist Coloring Book
    And you color really well
    But don't color outside the lines
    Or God will send you to hell
  • Not even hell can hurt me.. Only hell can hurt you.
    • Krazaknan, the last one
  • And when his eyes go dead, the hell I send him to will seem like heaven after what I've done to him.
    • "Marv" in Sin City
  • The hottest places in hell are reserved for those, who in the time of greatest moral conflict, remain neutral.
  • The Hell Law says that Hell is reserved exclusively for them that believe in it. Further, the lowest Rung in Hell is reserved for them that believe in it on the supposition that they'll go there if they don't.
  • The road to hell is paved with good intentions.
  • Sometimes you go to hell, and sometimes hell comes to you.
    • Flavor Text of "Helldozer", a card from Magic: The Gathering
  • How deep its pit, how hot its fires, how strong its chains.
    • Anonymous.
  • From a hypothesis about hell existence the hypothesis about immorality of a child-bearing automatically follows.
    • Anonymous.
  • Heaven and hell seem out of proportion to me: the actions of men do not deserve so much.

External links

Wikipedia
Wikipedia has an article about:
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Look up Hell in Wiktionary, the free dictionary

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

There's more than one place called Hell:

Africa

Europe

North America

.
  • Hell (Hades) - A place of eternal torment.^ Hell, Sheol-Hadees is a place of rest.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ In the Bible four words are translated Hell: the Hebrew word Sheol, in the original Old testament; its equivalent, the Greek word Hadees, in the Septuagint; and in the New Testament, Hadees, Gehenna and Tartarus.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    ^ No one in the Bible ever speaks of Hell, Sheol-Hadees as a place of punishment after death.
    • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

    Non-essential travel discouraged as of 2008.
This article is a disambiguation page. If you arrived here by following a link from another page you can help by correcting it, so that it points to the appropriate disambiguated page.

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

HELL (0. Eng. .hel, a Teutonic word from a root meaning "to cover," cf.^ The word is derived from the root SHAEL, which means, by implication, "to request, to demand."

Ger. .Mille, Dutch hel), the word used in English both of the place of departed spirits and of the place of torment of the wicked after death.^ Our English word hell is derived from an Anglo-Saxon word "hillan" or "helan," meaning a cavern, anciently denoting a concealed or UNSEEN place.

^ In both Gehenna is never used as the name of a place of future punishment.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ But neither of these words is ever used in the Bible to signify punishment after death, nor should the word Hell ever be used as the rendering of Sheol or Hadees for neither word denotes post-mortem torment.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

.It is used in the Old Testament to translate the Hebrew Sheol, and in the New Testament the Greek On g, Hades, and y€EVva, Hebrew Gehenna (see Eschatology) .^ HELL - THE HADEAN STATE There is one Hebrew word and three Greek words which have been translated "hell" in our commonly used King James or Authorized Version of the Bible.

^ The words rendered hell in the bible, sheol, hadees, tartarus, and gehenna, shown to denote a state of temporal duration.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ HADEES IN THE NEW TESTAMENT .
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]



Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also hell

English

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Wikipedia has an article on:

Proper noun

Singular
Hell
Plural
-
Hell
  1. (Christianity) Alternative spelling of hell. Place of suffering for sinners.
  2. Any of various towns so named.

Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki

derived from the Saxon helan, to cover; hence the covered or the invisible place. In Scripture there are three words so rendered:
.(1.) Sheol, occurring in the Old Testament sixty-five times.^ As we trace the history of the locality as it occurs in the Old Testament we learn that it should never have been translated by the word Hell.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ In the Old Testament, the corresponding word is Sheol, which signifies the state of the dead in general without regard to the goodness or badness of the persons, their happiness or misery.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ In the Bible four words are translated Hell: the Hebrew word Sheol, in the original Old testament; its equivalent, the Greek word Hadees, in the Septuagint; and in the New Testament, Hadees, Gehenna and Tartarus.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

.This word sheol is derived from a root-word meaning "to ask," "demand;" hence insatiableness (Prov 30:15f).^ Consult the passages in which the word is rendered grave, and substitute the original word Sheol, and it will be seen that the meaning is far better preserved: Gen.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Such is the meaning in every passage in the Old Testament containing the word Sheol or Hadees, whether translated Hell, grave or pit.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

.It is rendered "grave" thirty-one times (Gen 37:35; Gen 42:38; Gen 44:29ff; 1Sam 2:6, etc.^ Accordingly, our English translators have rendered the word Sheol grave in thirty instances out of the whole sixty-four instances in which it occurs."
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Sheol occurs exactly sixty-four times and is translated hell thirty-two times, pit three times, and grave twenty-nine times.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Consult the passages in which the word is rendered grave, and substitute the original word Sheol, and it will be seen that the meaning is far better preserved: Gen.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

). .The Revisers have retained this rendering in the historical books with the original word in the margin, while in the poetical books they have reversed this rule.^ Consult the passages in which the word is rendered grave, and substitute the original word Sheol, and it will be seen that the meaning is far better preserved: Gen.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

In thirty-one cases in the Authorized Version this word is rendered "hell," the place of disembodied spirits. The inhabitants of sheol are "the congregation of the dead" (Prov 21:16). .It is (a) the abode of the wicked (Num 16:33; Job 24:19; Ps 917; Ps 3117, etc.^ Job 17: 16.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Job 24: 19: "Drought and heat consume the snow-waters; so doth the grave those which have sinned."
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Psalm 31: 17: "Let the wicked be ashamed, and let them be silent in the grave."
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

); (b) of the good (Ps 1610; Ps 303; Ps 4915; Ps 8613, etc.).
.Sheol is described as deep (Job 11:8), dark (Job 10:21ff), with bars (Job 17:16).^ It is in the dust-Job 17: 16: "They shall go down to the bars of Sheol-Hadees, when our rest together is in the dust."
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Job 17: 13-14: "If I wait, the grave is mine house: I have made my bed in the darkness.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Job 17: 16.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

.The dead "go down" to it (Num 16:30, Num 16:33; Ezek 31:15ff).^ It is in the dust-Job 17: 16: "They shall go down to the bars of Sheol-Hadees, when our rest together is in the dust."
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

.(2.) The Greek word hades of the New Testament has the same scope of signification as sheol of the Old Testament.^ When Hadees is used in the New Testament, we must understand it just as we do (Sheol or Hadees) in the Old Testament.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Sheol is precisely the same word as Saul.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ We believe we have recorded every passage in which the word Sheol-Hadees occurs.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

.It is a prison (1 Pet 3:19), with gates and bars and locks (Mt 16:18; Rev 1:18), and it is downward (Mt 11:23; Lk 10:15).^ (See I Kings 11: 7; II Kings 23: 10.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

The righteous and the wicked are separated. The blessed dead are in that part of hades called paradise (Lk 23:43). They are also said to be in Abraham's bosom (Lk 16:22).
.(3.) Gehenna, in most of its occurrences in the Greek New Testament, designates the place of the lost (Mt 23:33).^ That the Hebrew Sheol never designates a place of punishment in a future state of existence, we have the testimony of the most learned of scholars, even among the so-called orthodox.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ In the Bible four words are translated Hell: the Hebrew word Sheol, in the original Old testament; its equivalent, the Greek word Hadees, in the Septuagint; and in the New Testament, Hadees, Gehenna and Tartarus.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

^ Gehenna is never employed in the Old Testament to mean anything else than the place with which every Jew was familiar.
  • The Bible Hell 17 January 2010 18:59 UTC www.tentmaker.org [Source type: Original source]

The fearful nature of their condition there is described in various figurative expressions (Mt 8:12; Mt 13:42; Mt 22:13; Mt 25:30; Lk 16:24, etc.). (See also Hinnom.)
This article needs to be merged with Hell (Catholic Encyclopedia).
This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.
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Simple English

in the cathedral of Ovieto. This fresco is called The Condemned. It was painted by Luca Signorelli, about 1450]]

In many religions, Hell is a place where souls of dead people go after their lives end. It is often thought of as the opposite of Heaven, and a place where no love and no God is. In many religions, Hell is the place where the souls of dead people go if they have done evil things in life. It is used in the Old Testament to translate the Hebrew Sheol. In the New Testament the Greek ᾅδης, Hades, and γεέννα, Hebrew Gehenna.

Contents

Jewish beliefs about Hell

Many believe that Jews do not believe in hell, but really Jews do believe in this factor, only it does not consist of eternal torture, rather than lower levels of heaven that a person can descend to considering the number of mitzvot (commandment) that they have preformed. Gemmorah writings tell the Jews of devil beliefs, but these are stories and are taken lightly. Jews also believe that satan did exist, only he was an angle that quarreled with God, such as the story of Job.

Christian beliefs about Hell

In Christianity, Hell is usually the place where the souls of people go who did not accept the Christian God, or broke important rules set forth by God. In Hell, souls suffer and wait for the Last Judgement, a time when the souls of the dead will be judged by God. The concept of Hell in Christianity comes from the Bible and the "casting out" of Lucifer. In being cast out, he was removed from the presence of God. Therefore, if taken in its most literal sense, Hell is separation from God. Stated another way, to the Christian mind being separated from God is to be in Hell. Some Christians believe that Hell has real fire and flames, but others do not.

Many Christian groups believe that once a soul goes to Hell, it stays there forever and cannot leave. However, some Christian groups do not believe this. Mormons, for example, think Hell is only a temporary place, and that souls may leave Hell at some point. Other Christians believe that those who do not go to heaven simply stop existing and do not go to Hell. These Christians are called annihilationists.

Other religions' beliefs about Hell

  • The Ancient Greeks believed in a Hell-like place in the underworld called Tartaros. The god Hades was the ruler of the underworld.
  • In Buddhism Hell is a bad place and one of six worlds into which all souls are born.
  • In Islam, Hell is called Jahannam, and it is a place of punishment. However, some Muslims believe almost everyone will eventually be forgiven and taken to the Islamic Heaven (Jannah). The only people who will not be forgiven are those who choose to believe in many gods, or no god at all.[needs proof]
  • In Shintoism, Hell (Yomi) is similar to the Greek Hades, in that all souls go there, no matter their actions in life, to have a miserable existence forever.
  • The word for Hell in Hebrew is "the grave," where people go when they die.
  • In the Ancient Roman times, Hell was first thought of as a heaven like place, therefore sinning to get free passage in.[needs proof] However, the influence of Christianity made them think that Hell was a place of punishment.

Other pages


Citable sentences

Up to date as of December 14, 2010

Here are sentences from other pages on Hell, which are similar to those in the above article.








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