Thursday, December 15, 2011

Is Hell Real? : Best Answer


Hell is a belief: not a place: facts presented, By Kelly Granite Enck
I believe most Westerners have a subconscious fear of punishment and hidden guilt. Having surrendered my life over to God and signed up from Bible College to learn the Bible in depth, I believe I have enough facts to state, Hell is not a place but a state of mind that you have been conned into believing. In the next few minutes I will help to remove hell from your mind forever.

Bible translations on Hell: Christianity teaches the doctrine of hell and most Bible translations translate the original language words 'hades', 'Gehenna', and 'sheol' as "Hell" or "Hellfire". But, with carefully research you will see that the Bible translators were influenced by paganism.

“The Greek words translated “Hellfire” into Gehenna. This is the Greek spelling of the Hebrew, “ge-Hinnom”, or the “Valley of Hinnom”. This valley, is located southwest of Jerusalem, takes its name from a man, whose name was Hinnom and his sons who apparently came to own this property. It was in this valley that wicked kings, Ahaz and Manasseh sacrificed their children in the fire as an offering to Baal (2 Chronicles 28:3; 33:6). Of this practice, God said, "To burn their sons and their daughters with fire, which I did not command, nor did it come up on My heart." (Jeremiah 7:31). In this valley, these kings also practiced witchcraft, sorcery, divination, and also built up "high places" in worship of false Gods. Later, Josiah had parts of this valley polluted to render it unfit for any such practices in the future. In Jesus' day, the Valley of Hinnom was being used as a garbage dump.

There is a curious anomaly however, that seems to affect many, if not most translations of the Bible. Using the King James Version as an example, in the Hebrew Old Testament, the words ge-Hinnom occurs thirteen times, and each time, it is translated as the `valley of Hinnom'. Yet, when the Hebrew words ge-Hinnom are transliterated into Greek, Gehenna, the KJV translators consistently render the word as `Hell'. Why is this word recognized as a geographical region in the Old Testament, but, in the New Testament, as a place of fiery burning torment? Is there a valid basis for the "hell fire" rendering? To answer those questions, we need to look carefully at the Bible passages in which it occurs, the context of the time, and also at the audience to whom those words were addressed.

Of the twelve New Testament passages where Gehenna is used, eleven are in the synoptic gospels - Matthew, Mark, and Luke. All of these quote Jesus' words. The other Gehenna passage is in James 3:6. Of these verses, five mention fire as an element of Gehenna. The sense of judgment, condemnation, or destruction is present in most of these verses. Probably, for this reason, translators take the passages as a metaphor or description of `hellfire.’ But is it possible that there could be another explanation that better harmonizes with God's quality of love? Yes.

Keep in mind that this is a Hebrew word, and, in each case, Jesus was speaking to Jews. These Jews were certainly familiar with Jerusalem and its surroundings, including the nearby Valley of Hinnom, which, as previously stated, was used as a garbage dump. Here, fires were constantly kept burning as a means of consuming the refuse and the smoke from those fires would have been an constant feature of its presence, and visible from considerable distance. Sulfur, or brimstone was regularly thrown into the fires to accelerate the burning. That which was not destroyed by the fire was eaten by the worms or maggots, thus Jesus' words in Mark 9:47, "where their worm is not dying and the fire is not being quenched." must be taken as a literal description of conditions in the Valley of Hinnom. But how is that connected with the idea of punishment?
Valley of Hinnom, misunderstood as Hell. :)
The fact is that, not only trash was consumed in the fires of Gehenna, but also the carcasses of animals and the bodies of executed criminals were thrown into the fires to be burned up and forever destroyed. Never were live people thrown into Gehenna to be tortured. In Jewish belief, future life depended upon the restoration of the whole person through a resurrection. Normally, dead bodies were always buried - never cremated, to allow for this resurrection to take place. To completely destroy a person's body in Gehenna meant that he was considered unworthy of being resurrected at any time in the future. To be thrown into Gehenna would, to Jesus' Jewish listeners, signify a permanent death without any hope of future life, forever cut off from God. There could be no worse punishment than this.

The point is: Christendom's doctrine of Hellfire is based on pagan influences and tradition - but it is not a Biblical teaching. Christendom adopted their hellfire beliefs from ancient non-biblical sources.” –Michael R. Davenport, Biblical Greek Scholar

Origins of the word HELL: 
 *halja, meaning “one who covers up or hides something” and was used derisively for those who attempted to be something other than what they were in life: beggars pretended to be kings, the illiterate masqueraded as priests and teachers.  The first use of the word “Hell” in the contemporary Christian context occurred in Iceland in the eighth century. Seven hundred years after Jesus.

“Hell” has no Judeo-Christian origin.  Self-styled hate-mongers from the emerging church of Constantine through the dark days of Martin Luther and into the blindness of Bradlee Dean and Michele Bachman, Hell has become a concept that is more in keeping with the word Gehenna (Greek γέεννα), Gehinnom (Hebrew: גהנום/גהנם which is Aramaic in origin.  It refers to one of two valleys where apostate Israelites and followers of various Ba’als (a word that originally was used for Yah/Yahweh and actually means “husband” and “lord” and Canaanite gods.  The the valley is found in Joshua 15:8, 18:16.

When ancient (Biblical) Hebrews thought of the fate of those who died, they did not consider either heaven nor hell.  Instead, the deceased descended into Sheol: שְׁאוֹל.  It meant (and translates as) “a pit” or a “grave”. It was darkness and not a place nor an afterlife.  There was no belief that the dead would be “restored” or “come back to life” or be “born again.”  As it appears in Psalm 6:4–5 “Turn, O LORD, deliver my life; save me for the sake of your steadfast love. For in death there is no remembrance of you; in Sheol who will give you praise?”  Sheol is a place of nothingness: 
The ancient Hebrews had no idea of an immortal soul living a full and vital life beyond death, nor of any resurrection or return from death. Human beings, like the beasts of the field, are made of “dust of the earth,” and at death they return to that dust (Gen. 2:7; 3:19). The Hebrew word nephesh, traditionally translated “living soul” but more properly understood as “living creature,” is the same word used for all breathing creatures and refers to nothing immortal. All the dead go down to Sheol, and there they lie in sleep together – whether good or evil, rich or poor, slave or free (Job 3:11–19). It is described as a region “dark and deep,” “the Pit,” and “the land of forgetfulness,” cut off from both God and human life above (Pss. 6:5; 88:3–12). Though in some texts YHWH’s power can reach down to Sheol (Ps. 139:8), the dominant idea is that the dead are abandoned forever. This idea of Sheol is negative in contrast to the world of life and light above, but there is no idea of judgment or of reward and punishment. If one faces extreme circumstances of suffering in the realm of the living above, as did Job, it can even be seen as a welcome relief from pain–see the third chapter of Job. But basically it is a kind of “nothingness,” an existence that is barely existence at all, in which a “shadow” or “shade” of the former self survives (Ps. 88:10).

Most Pastors are under educated and taught to believe in the Bible blindly. As a student of Biblical Scripture you are not allowed to question the contradictions in the Bible, including all the translation errors. It is this ignorance that continues today.

To cover up the non-Yahwehistic origins, the Levi priesthood created the myth that children were fully sacrificed to the Palestinian gods so that nomadic Hebrews could justify their invasion and conquest of the land of Canaan (2 Chronicles 28:3, 33:6; Jeremiah 7:31, 19:2-6).  Through a series of bad translations and redactions Gehenna is transmogrified in both Rabbinical Jewish and Early Christian writing as a destination of the wicked–in keeping with the evolving underworld of the god Hades in ancient Greek theology.

The Hebrews do not make Gehenna a purgatory until the days of the Mishnah: in Kiddushin 4.14, Avot 1.5; 5.19, 20, Tosefta t.Bereshith 6.15, and Babylonian Talmud b.Rosh Hashanah 16b:7a; b.Bereshith 28b. It is an invention that has no ancient foundation.
Jesus uses the word Gehenna 11 times to describe the opposite to life in the Kingdom of God: βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ (Mark 9:43-48).  The “Kingdom” is within people (Luke 17:20-21), it is not a physical or extra-terrestrial place.  It follows the Hebrew: מלכות השמים‎, Malkuth meaning a cleansing of the mind (spiritual rebirth) and a willingness to tolerate and emotionally support–not destroy–others.  It was Cyrus king of Persia who embellished this thought by saying: ” ‘The Lord, the gods of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and he has appointed me to build a temple for him at Jerusalem in Judah (a line plagiarized in 2 Chronicles 36:23).  The “Lord” being discussed was neither Yahweh nor Jesus, but a universal aspect of love that would occur once people stopped judging one another (Matthew 7:1 and Acts 10:24; cp.

Dante Alighieri (author of Hell), best know for his epic poem Commedia, later named La divine (Divine Comedy), which Salvador Dali created famous paintings of. Below is Dali's own painting, which scared him to death, he said. See what these ideas do to the mind! vision of hellDante created Judecca, for the base of his Hell–named after the apostle, Judas Iscariot, who by common misunderstanding is claimed to have betrayed Jesus, is the innermost zone of the ninth and final circle of hell. The term also broadly hints at a manifestation of Christian prejudice (that Dante certainly shared on par with the anti-Semitism of Martin Luther) against Judaism and Jews in the Middle Ages.

Augustine of Hippo in scriptorium
The idea that “hell” is a place of torment filled with demons is a literary device to capture attention and inspire fear; god is no longer the greater lover, but the great evil monster: the Beast in all religions as found in Plato’s (428 B.C.-348 BCE) myth of Er[is] (The Republic 10.614-10.621) and Dante’s The Divine Comedy (Circle 9 – Cantos 31-34).  Dante draws on various hate-filled theologians, from Augustine of Hippo in his (City of God,book 15)–represented the evils of the earthly city (Dante, Inferno 11. circle 9, 61-66) to contemporary pontiffs and theological “scholars” who slavishly studied redactions without bothering with the original texts and whose translation and interpretation skills were parochial at best and infantile in reality.
Dante calls this circle (number 9), a frozen lake, Cocytus (from Greek Κωκυτός, meaning “to lament” and symbolized as a “river of wailing”–a metaphor used by latter-day Hebrews and early Jewish Christians in Alexandria, Egypt).  It is described by Virgil (70-19 BCE) as a dark, deep pool of water that encircles a forest and into which pours sand spewed from a torrid whirlpool.

Judas, according to the New Testament fulfilled his role as “foreseen” by Jesus at the Last Supper: when he later identified Jesus to the authorities with a kiss.  The kiss, with the rise of Constantine I’s catholic (universal) church in 325 CE, changed from a pledge of trust to a sign of betrayal (although by the time of Dante it returned in feudal rights as the final symbol of an oath of fealty).  According to the synoptic gospel of Matthew, Judas regretted his betrayal that led to Jesus’ death.  Judas returned the silver and hanged himself (Matthew 26:14-16; 26:21-5; 26:47-9; 27:3-5). Suffering even more than Brutus and Cassius, Dante’s Judas is placed head-first inside Lucifer’s central mouth, with his back skinned by the devil’s claws (Inferno34.58-63), reflecting ancient Egyptian  theology (c. 2705–1070 BC)

On the opposite specturm here is a painting of the Kiss of Judas (by Giotto); the lanterns symbolize quest for truth. This matches the teachings of Jesus to love and forgive. 

Here is a Beautiful Film Showing where the concept of the Lake of Fire may have originate.

Later religious inventions, such as Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, describe Hell as being ruled over by demons who take delight and sadistic pleasure in tormenting the damned (usually defined as anyone who goes against the covenant of any religion or questions authorities such as priests, rabbis, pastors and mullahs).  The various versions of the mythological Hell are ruled by a death god. who was addressed in antiquity by such names as Nergal: a Babylonian deity with the main seat of his cult at Cuthah represented by the mound of Tell-Ibrahim; see: 2 Kings 17:30.  Nergal was originally a solar god known as  נֵרְגַל and in cuneiform is known as “the furious one” who burned outdated teachings in a constant revision of Babylonian theology and was identified with the god and planet Mars.  Nergal has an equal in the Greek god Hades: ᾍδης who was also known as “Plouton” (Greek: Πλούτων, meaning “the rich one” as he was lord over all minerals of the earth including gold, silver, copper, and so forth.  Hades and his Battle with the Gods is the foundation stone for the myth of the Apocalypse (Revelation), as recorded by Homer in his epic poem  Iliad (xv.187–93).

Hades was never a place, and it is wrong to parallel the name to the Hebrew Sheol (שאול, grave or dirt-pit), that refers to the abode of the dead).  A similar deity was Enma/Yama (ancient Buddhist/India and Chinese theology; the Sanskrit is: यम.  This deity was given the name of the Buddhist Dharmapala who was the judge of the dead, and presides over the Buddhist Narakas or Pāli: निरय [Nirayas]. Dharmapala is the Sanskrit term that was translated into Tibetan as chös-skyong, which actually means „protector of the teachings, not punisher.

Sanskrit may be the oldest language in the world. Some would say it can be dated back five thousand years, although the earliest Vedas, the earliest writings in this language, date from ca. 1500 BCE. Needless to say, Sanskrit was a spoken language for many many years before it was ever written down, but we can never have evidence of when or by whom. Only similarities with other languages in the Indo-Iranian branch of Indo-European languages suggest a migration from a point further to the west of India, such as Iran.
Zoroaster's Apocalypse and Yima Xšaēta
Yama springs from the ancient Persian/Aryan theology of Zoroaster. Yama is known as Yima Xšaēta in the Zoroastrian scripture of the Avesta), or in Christian/Judaic and Islamic mythology as The Devil (or Satan, the Sumerian / Babylonian name,  or Lucifer). In Islam, the Devil is a strange beast that does not actually reside in Hell but supervises the torture of the damned and has unlimited powers (part of an Islamic Trinity which was invented from the ancient Egyptian Trinity; the word Trinity does not appear in Jewish or Christian scriptures).  The New Testament uses the Greek word Hades to refer to the temporary abode of the dead (e.g. Acts 2:31; Revelation 20:13). Hell was never considered as a permanent place in early Christianity, but evolved when various clerics learned they could make money selling remission of sins–a custom that continued until Martin Luther attempted to stop it in the sixteenth century with his verbal assaults on Johann Tetzel whom he accused of selling indulgences–a historic lie still in coinage.  Tetzel, a Dominican, did carry promises of forgiveness from guilt of sin for the dead–a subject that is found in 2 Maccabees 12:42–46, and when confronted with Martin Luther’s 27th thesis, responded with his thesis 55-56: Animam purgatam evolare, est eam visione dei potiri, quod nulla potest intercapedine impediri. Quisquis ergo dicit, non citius posse animam volare, quam in fundo cistae denarius possit tinnire, errat. In: D. Martini Lutheri, Opera Latina: Varii Argumenti, 1865, Henricus Schmidt, ed.  Frankfurt am Main & Erlangen, Germany:  Heyder and Zimmer,  vol. 1, p. 300; “For a soul to fly out,"is for it to obtain the vision of God, which can be hindered by no interruption, therefore he errs who says that the soul cannot fly out before the coin can jingle in the bottom of the chest.”

Purgatory (as a noun it does not appear before 1160 CE) was a temporary hell, from which there was release, after a period of suffering.  It does not become an official teaching of the Roman Catholic church until the Second Council of Lyon (1274), the Council of Florence (1438–1445), and the Council of Trent (1545–63).  In 1999, Pope John Paul II declared that the term Purgatory does not indicate a place, but “a condition of existence”.  Purgatory, however, was not a Christian invention, but came earlier with classical Buddhism, for example, that discusses rebirth in any of the six realms—whether as a god, human, demigod (asura), animal, hungry ghost, or hell being.  It is a temporary state conditioned by the character of the intentional actions performed in a person’s past lives (karma). While Luther objected to money buying pardons in Germany, the same objection did not occur in Buddhist lands or where Buddhist missionaries ministered. Donations to a monastic community, altruistic practice of spiritual disciplines, and good deeds have always been seen as valid means of generating merit that may be dedicated to relieving the purgatorial suffering of beings imprisoned in sorrowful rebirths or in transit between lives (The idea of purgatory in Chinese traditions is discussed by Stephen F. Teiser (1994). The Scripture on the Ten Kings and the Making of Purgatory in Medieval Chinese Buddhism. Honolulu, HI, USA : University of Hawaii Press, reissued 2003).
Jesus Tomb

My memoir  "From Hollywood to God"  is now on Amazon and Kindle books!

Sneak-A-Peek Below!
My first stop was to The World Sound Healing Conference in San Francisco. I wanted to understand the science of frequencies, especially if everything in the universe was vibrating to their own unique song! I waited in the large conference room to hear Dr. Susan Yale's lecture on the Harmonic Oscillator. The room went dark and three pyramids projected on a large movie screen.


"You can hear the sound of "nature" between the Pyramids of Giza," Dr. Yale said, pausing, "it's a perfect F Sharp." No one moved. She spoke slowly, "If you knew there was a place in the world where you could hear God, would you go?" I always wanted to swim in the Nile! ~ from my Memoir, (click link—"From Hollywood to God"  Kelly Granite Enck on Amazon books and Kindle.
Giza, Egypt
Hiking through Bhutan

Tiger's Temple, Thailand
River Kwai, Thailand

Peru
Tiger's Nest Bhutan

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