Thursday, September 08, 2011


We are having a Convocation at the Church this weekend.  Rev. Dr. Heather Murray Elkins in coming to lead worship and several seminars.  Her seminar topic is "He Decended into Hell."  The text she is using is Undiscovered Country by Peter S. Hawkins.  In this book, Hawkins examines the concepts of hell, pugartory and heaven with Dante's The Divine Comedy as an illustrative backbone.

As Hawkins explores the idea of hell, he makes several points I thought were interesting:
  • Dante's Inferno is a portrait of what our world would be if left to its own devices.
  • Those in hell are given an eternity of what they loved the most on earth.  It seems counter-intuitive, but think about it for a moment.
  • Sin is its own punishment; the crime becomes the punishment.
To quote the book, " is a spiritual condition, a "state of complete frustration and emptiness of life without God ... the state of those who freely and definitively separate themselves from God."

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