Posts Tagged ‘Hell’

At the Calgary Centre for Spiritual Living there has been a movement to build community outside of the classes and Sunday Gatherings. The first wave has been in the introduction of Friday Night Happy Hour activiies, last night was such a night with a movie night (these are usually monthly, and I have blogged on previous movies). Last Night’s fair was People v. The State of Illusion which centres on the story of Aaron and his daughter, Hope. Aaron is a widow, who is on the cusp of loosing his rat race job, and has a liquid lunch before going to see his daughter perform. One choice to drive while intoxicated and his daughter is ripped away…and Aaron is jail bound.

I don’t want to get to into the ins and outs of the story, but it becomes a guided journey of who Aaron will choose to be?

Will he choose the hell of jail or the freedom of jail? What does it mean to alter reality and perception? This is not the best movie on these topics I have seen, it is like a Crime Stoppers re-enactment interspersed with interviews from experts ala Unsolved Mysteries. There is good discussion points, as well as some good ponderances as it is like an overview course of personal change and growth. It is the type of movie that could easily be done as a movie night that would allow for pausing after certain scenes for broader discussion, with family and friends over pizza and coke.

So, do you want to remove the hell you live in and replace it with the reality of the divine you?


Principle 1: God is absolute good, everywhere present.

For me this is a time to reflect on the original blessing of creation, that God called her creation blessed, beloved.  We tend to lose this sentiment in religion formed on power dynamics, a ladder to ascend, but if the ladder collapses, we can truly explore, as Augustine stated the never ending circle that is God, or as Matthew Fox stated, God is in everything and everything is in God.  What a wonderful blessing to continually have the Holy exist within oneself, and continually exist within the Holy.

It is interesting that this module would ask about my image of God, since this past Sunday at the Companions in Mission course this is what we were discussing, yes I was taught of a loving father, kind of the image in my mind was Zeus in the old Hercules cartoon.  Yet as my journey has continued God has become an ever present feeling of love, hope and joy.  Which only others can comment if my actions reflect this belief about God or not.

How do I reflect that evil exists, if the ever presence of God is good? Simple, it is not giving in to that which we have capacity for, in a logical creation paradox exists, but it is where we place our faith and belief, and where we allow our actions to grow out of that matters.  The question asked around mistakes, or bad things that happen…with each of these there has been a moment  of personal and corporate discovery and growth through adversity which is what I believe the true purpose of adversity is, much like Satan in the Hebrew bible was the tempter/challenger/refiner.

Hmmm the question of Hell. I honestly do not believe in Hell.  I lend more to the Buddhist thought here that there is a heaven/hell dynamic within each of us that is always struggling and it is those times when we choose selfishness/motives that we experience hell.  For as the notes said, I cannot reconcile a loving God banishing any of her beloved to eternal damnation.

The main universal spiritual law that I have witnessed bear out in the positive, is love others as you wish to be loved, the Golden Rule, it is a standard that if we all choose to live through it, and respond to it, the world does become Nirvana here.

The idea of the Holy Spirit, in Eastern healings it is referred to in the medium of Chakras, the soul, the spirit, the divine spark. I have always stood by that each piece of creation has this spark, let’s be honest Genesis tells us God breathed life (divinity) into us. In their image we are made. The question is do we recognize the holy (Namaste) in one another or get lost in the negative cycle of proving our rightness over another?

Sin, ah is it missing the mark, is it a conscious choice to close off our connection to the divine, both and in my heart…but it is also more, it is choosing or having the choice made, to remove oneself from community to create that disruption of the Shemaic relationship (Love of God, neighbour and self).

Does it exist? If it does what form does Hell take?  A devil with cloven hooves, pitch fork in uncomfortable spaces and hell fire? Or Dante‘s descending rings of horrors?

Stargate SG-1 Season 3 did a two parter exploring what one concept of Hell could be within their existence. The episodes were “Jellinars Memories” (episode 12) and “The Devil you Know” (episode 13), which literally saw our intrepid heroes journey to hell, that is the planet the Gaould used for eternal torment on a rescue mission for Samantha Carter‘s father, who had become a Tokra and just to add to the challenge, Satan (The Adversary) is revealed to be a resurrected, albeit slightly damaged, Apophos.

So what does this mean for the viewer on the outside?  One could say blasphemy, the idea that a spiritual being from the Holy Bible could be reduced to an alien, but it raises the existential question of what is reality? For the torture was done through the mind by having each member: Jack, Daniel and Sam, relive significant pieces of their past. For Jack O’Neill it was attempting to retell the story of his son, Sam, before Sam shot himself with Jack’s gun.

Horror, challenge,striving for power and identity, each of these is touched upon.  What arises for us to contemplate is this: Is hell a physical place, or is it an etheral/spiritual realm?  The concept of Islamic Jihad is that the angelic/demonic natures struggle within the individual.  Tibetan Buddhism speaks of these realms as well.  Jungian Analysts talk of bringing understanding and balance to the individual through the anima/animus.

So the journey into hell brings resolution, rescue, and escape back to Earth.  A pilgrimage into “The Dark Night” of the Soul if you are a fan of St. John of the Cross, so here is the question these episodes bring to mind for us dear reader, How do we go to hell? and how do we escape hell?