The hunger of Hell


“Having food is equivalent to being in heaven!”  I know that feeling.  But once you have enough food, you start realizing that there is one more thing needed to escape your personal hell.

A few years ago, around the Easter of 2005, I had an illness that affected my digestion.  I was unable to digest most food for a couple weeks, and since then I have been unable to digest fat in more than small quantities.  At the time, I used to not eat much, but mostly fatty foods.  When I was no longer able to eat fat, my digestive tract simply did not have the capacity to keep up with my need for food.  I lost weight for several months until my body had adjusted to the larger quantities of starch I needed.  Even then it took many more months to get back to a more normal weight.

During the period when my fat reserves were low, I was almost always hungry.  Even when my stomach was full, there was a deep craving in my body and brain for more food.  I would overeat and get sick until I learned to know my limits. But even when sick, a part of me was still hungry.

For millions of people around the world, this is their daily life, or even worse.  They can rarely eat as much as they want, and even when they do, they cannot do so for the months it would take to fill their body’s reserves.  They are always starving.  Whatever they do, there is always this craving that can only briefly be alleviated, and never fully.

There are also some people who suffer from a problem of the metabolism, in which the body never gets the signal that it has enough energy in storage.  These people are wrecked by hunger even when they are drowning in their own fat. It is an almost hellish existence, and one to call on deep sympathy from anyone who has truly felt hunger. If you feel contempt for these people, please reconsider before you are given a hands-on demonstration.

And yet, there is something even more hellish, namely the hunger of the soul.  For like the body depends on food to survive, so does the soul depend on love.  I use “soul” partly in a religious sense, but even the psyche in the most clinical sense is in deep trouble if it cannot receive and metabolize love.  Children given food but not love will often sicken and die, or grow up with brain damage visible in a scanner.

As with the body, the soul also has its metabolism.  There are many people who cannot absorb and make use of all kinds of love.  A large number of them cannot believe in voluntary, selfless love.  They rely on threatening or coercing others, or using “guilt trips”.  But of course the quality of the attention they get is much lower than that of ordinary love. But they have developed this strategy early in life, and they stick with it, even though they are bound to suffer from “love hunger” throughout their whole life.  Ryuho Okawa writes that the souls in Hell are in this situation, desperate for love but unable to receive it because they only think of taking, not giving. His notion of Hell sounds more like the Purgatory of Catholicism, and I certainly don’t claim any personal knowledge of it.  But that many people are in a kind of hell already in this life because they cannot “metabolize” higher forms of love, that is an almost trivial observation.

Even if you exclude the hellish “love substitutes”, there is clearly a wide range of loves. There is the physical love (as in “making love”), which can have both good and bad aspects, depending on the situation that surrounds it.  A higher form than this is the natural form of “love that gives”, such as the love a decent parent has for its child.  In a good marriage, the spouses will also have this kind of love for each other.  And there are even more selfless forms of love. But around here, we start to enter the realm of religion, and I don’t expect all or even many of you to take any interest in that.  In any case, if we strive to share the highest form of love that we are aware of, even if it is of this world, it is far more useful than theoretical speculation on some remote, spiritual love that we then proceed to never use.

Not that it seems particularly theoretical or remote to me at this time.

At this point you may say: This talk about higher love, is that not just “sour grapes” for people who fear being rejected for physical love, and perhaps with good reason?  (The concept of “sour grapes” refers to an ancient fable of a fox who was unable to reach some grapes on the vine because they were hanging too high, and walking away commented that they were sour anyway.)

“Sour grapes” can certainly happen. It is quite common, in fact.  Many of the “live single or die” people suffers from this.  But in fact the name is quite apt.  This attitude has a bad taste.  It is bitter, cynical, mocking, critical. Those who suffer from sour grapes will at some point make it clear that they don’t feel they get what they deserve.  In contrast, you will notice that my most fervent hope is to never get what I deserve.  This was not always so – when I was young, it was the other way around. But that is a long story, not for today.

The Japanese writer Ryuho Okawa compares love to a river that flows downward, from higher realms to lower.  Divine love flows through the realms of archangel, saints and angels, through the spirit world and into our own, like a river in cascading waterfalls. This is the life of the saints, a waterfall of love passing through them from the endless source above to the endless need below. Even while in this world, they are also in Heaven and take part in the flow of love there.

You may not believe in saints, much less angels, not to mention God. But you believe in love, unless you are already in Hell while still alive. Please understand that just like some foods are more dense in nutrients  than others, so also there are higher forms of love that are more nourishing than lower forms. In this way, someone who has access to a very high level of spiritual love may say to those who are still unfamiliar with it:  “I have food that you don’t know about.” You may believe this or not, but what counts right away is to metabolize the love that is available at our current level, so we can work and grow.

It is not true that love is all we need.  We still need air, water and food.  Nor does spiritual love completely replace sex, in case you wondered.  But true love frees us from seeking all those things of this world as a substitute for love. Comfort eating, for instance, or “making love” where there is no love, only desperate need for attention. Opening up to ever higher forms of love frees us from the hunger of Hell, while we are still alive.  If you set your sight on the highest form of love you believe in today, and seek to attune to it and share with others, Heaven will be on your side whether you believe in it or not. And gradually, over months or years, you will feel the fierce hunger fade and a deep sense of satisfaction flow through your days.  You don’t need to explain it to experience it.

Oh, and this seems like a good time to link to The Hungersite.  You can show your love by clicking once a day to feed the hungry of the world for free.

Cellphone diversity


No, really, they can’t see your body language through the telephone, not even when you exaggerate it. All you achieve is to entertain people like me, or Konata here.

Some otherwise well-intending people I know believe that they are not racists (presumably because they are not white), yet they have this concept of “diversity”.  It seems to mean that in any group of more than a couple persons, in order to have the right to an opinion, the group needs to comprise different skin colors.  In other contexts there may also be a need for at least two genders, preferably more, but the color thing is the most obvious and baffling. For skin color to have anything to do with diversity, you almost have to be either a racist or a photographer.  But I am willing to tolerate even that. After all, with the cell phones we have today, almost everyone is a photographer…

If you REALLY want diversity, however, you should categorize people based on how they use their cell phone, and include at least one from each of the main three types.

I see them on the street, I see them on the bus, occasionally even at work.  The age, gender and skin color varies wildly, but they all do the same thing, talk in their cell phones. In this regard, there is no diversity at all.  Even when they speak a language I don’t even recognize, they are all eerily similar.  Surely any one of them, even the one who just came here last year from Africa, is more similar to the rest of them than to me.  I claim minority status dammit! RESPECT ME NOW!

So, the three main breeds of human, as revealed by their cell phones.

Type 1: The talker.  This person, in true reactionary fashion, uses the telephone to talk. As if we weren’t in a new millennium at all.  There’s a lot of these people.  You can usually recognize them as soon as the phone comes out, either because it is already ringing, or because it is small, with a particularly small display and plain, functional number keys filling the rest of the front.

Type 2: The texter. There is an overlap between this group and the first. Some people will talk if reasonably private but text in a more crowded setting, such as the bus. But you will also see them walking down the street, texting and relying on the world to not collide with them.  They also frequently receive text messages, which means they either stick with their own type or have somehow conditioned others to use the same channel to communicate with them.  Their phones are larger, to give room for a high quality display and large keys.  Occasionally the number keys are replaced with a tiny QWERTY keyboard, and inventive ways exist to fold this into the phone when not in use.

Type 3: The surfer.  At first glance this may look like a texter, but the rhythm is different. The surfer will click a few keys, then look at the screen for a while, then click again. Sometimes he (are there even any female surfers?) will type for a while, but there is no finality to it.  The phone is fairly large, but most important, it is almost entirely covered by screen. The surfer will most likely type on the screen with his fingertip, rather than a separate keyboard.

No prizes for guessing which type I am.  I have recently completed my phonification of Twitter, Facebook and Livejournal by installing specific clients for each of them on my Android phone.  (HTC Hero, for those who missed the news.) This way I can check or update my social sites on the bus.  Actually I am not very social at all, as you may have noticed, but so much the better that I can get it done on the bus. Or in bed.  Instant gratification!  Not in the shower though.

I have yet to receive a call on it though, thankfully.  Much less place one.

Big Facebook sees you


“Similar interests create friends, and aspirations gather those with the same mindset.” As does Facebook, evidently, or at least it frantically tries.

So I did not spend the whole weekend meditating on my worthlessness and lack of loving my fellow humans.  I also went and got a Facebook accound.  Theoretically there may be a connection, but knowing me, my FB probably won’t be much of an Outreach of Love.

What I did notice, however, was that while I was still registering, the web site presented me with several people it thought might be my friends.  In the case of some of them, they were. These were people from a mailing list where I have been a regular for years.  It is not publicly stored though, to the best of my knowledge.  It is fairly easy to gain access and most of the subscribers are lurkers, but it is still fairly limited.  It’s not the Micropenis Support Group Mailing List (my apologies to all who just googled for that) but it is still a place I don’t expect my employer to ever look.

At a later stage in establishing the account, I got a new batch of potential friends. Again there was one or two that seemed familiar.  Given the millions and millions of people already using Facebook, it can’t be an accident.  What, then?  I wondered.

Ironically the most likely answer came from one of my now Facebook friends. She proposed that these were people who had me in their email contact list.  For toward the end of the registration process, the website asked politely for my gmail password.  (I suppose if you had Hotmail, it would ask for the Hotmail passwords, etc.) How stupid do they think I am?  I would not give my gmail password to my second best friend. And to my best friend only if I suspected that the end of my life was drawing near.  Actually it always is, but I have not given her my password yet. So, forget it FB.  But perhaps some other people did, and FB duly put their contacts in their database for later.

Another possibility is that these are people who specifically queried FB with my email address to see if I was a user.  I know we discussed social network sites on the mailing list.  So they may have been curious to see whether I really didn’t use it.  Well, now I do. People can change. A little.

“Nobody loves me”


“It is a love from the cosmos that has transcended through the dimensions!” That’s my kind of love.  (Strangely, this screenshot is not made by Happy Science, quite the  contrary.  It sure sounds like something they could have said, though, particularly since their 9th dimension is also called the “cosmic dimension”.)

I said yesterday that I wanted to give you an example of the vast gap between me and most people. (Because of this gap, I gradually have had less and less contact with people except for business.) By reading excerpts of some books by Ryuho Okawa (“El Cantare” among friends), I have realized that I have much to learn about communicating. Perhaps if I improve my communications skill, others will be able to understand a little.  As it stands today, unfortunately, I cannot expect you to understand. You must necessarily misunderstand completely. Today I give you an example of this.

“Nobody loves me.”

When someone says this, you know they are deeply depressed (or otherwise whiny, angsty teenagers, I guess). If the feeling is genuine, it may cause people to even end their lives.  If they are more lucky, they may start doing foolish things to try to attract love.  (Of course, suicide is the most foolish thing of all.) Generally, not being loved is one of the most luckless situations people can think of, worse than poverty and most non-fatal illnesses.  In fact, the fear of losing love is often what scares people the most about disfigurement, crippling disease, mental illness or economic failure.

I sincerely hope nobody loves me.

To me, it has a very precise meaning. And the meaning hinges on the “body”.  If I were to experience that noONE loves me, I would indeed be terrified, as if being swallowed by Hell itself.  (Even if you don’t believe in Hell, you can probably imagine the concept.) A state of utter despair, a loss of meaning, the very core of my being ripped out.  I know this because I briefly experienced it several times in the past, although never for as much as half a day. How anyone would bear it for years is beyond my imagination, and I hope actually that it will always be.

I would be insane to compare myself to Jesus Christ generally, but there were a couple things he said that deeply make sense to me.  One, “I am not alone, He who sent me is with me.”  The other, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”  In retrospect I believe that it were those short episodes in my life that made me realize to a deep degree that I am usually NOT forsaken, at least yet.  Not alone, even when no body is around.  Not unloved even if no one loves me in the flesh.

Is it really God – the Father, or the Son, or the Holy Spirit – who maintains this presence in me? Or is it merely some lower instance channeling the love and wisdom from on high?  I have no way to prove one or another, but I would be hard pressed to deny that there is something. Otherwise I could not possibly be so happy for so long under circumstances that would drive many to despair.

Lack of being loved is NOT a problem.  Lack of loving others is.  I have sought to love in a diffuse way, like a saint or bodhisattva, who love mankind in general or even all creatures. But self-observation tells me that I am not a saint or bodhisattva.  I am not doing a very good job of it.  I have my small outlets, but they are small indeed.  Especially compared with the huge influx. This is my worry, when I worry at all.  But not being loved? It is the LEAST of my problems.  And usually I have very small problems, and few at that.

To me, being loved by a human would carry no benefit. My love-getting meter needle is already on full. It would be a pure responsibility.  If a human was attached to me, how would I possibly avoid disappointing it? Even if I somehow managed to live a perfect life (which is unimaginably far from reality), I would not be able to die a perfect death. My passing would cause deep and lasting pain.  So if I can avoid causing pain with my death, and avoid causing pain with my life, that seems to be the best I can hope for.

I try to give people something with my words.  Something to think about, with some stuff around, like the apple seeds are surrounded by apple and the orange seeds surrounded by orange.   So what I hope is that at some future time, something I said will be of help to someone.  They may not remember the exact words (and perhaps the exact words are not quite as good as the words that come up inside them later).  They may not remember where they heard it.  Perhaps they “just thought of something”. Or vaguely remember. That is what I hope for.  When I am gone and forgotten, or even just forgotten.  I don’t want them to think “Wow, that Itland guy really knew how it was!” or “Thank you, Lord, for they great and wise servant Itland who brought Your light to us.”  First, that is not very likely. I am a worse than useless servant, not even doing what is required of me. Second, it would not make a difference, since God – or whatever it is that keeps me company – already knows how things are, and reprimand me or encourage me accordingly, without the need to be told by anyone.

Let us sum it up. If someone were to love me, it would not make me any happier. It would simply be a weight on me, having to constantly think about how not to disappoint. And they would not understand why their love made no difference to me.  It would surely cause them pain.

No, I must somehow find the way of the bodhisattva, even if I suck royally at it. It is the only option I can think of.  As Krishna said in the Bhagavad Gita: “It is better to do your own duty, even if you fail, than to perfectly fulfill the duty of another.”

Sick and worthless


“For what purpose do we live?”  That’s easy for you, Ryuta. You’ve got a girlfriend. You have to live for her, regardless of whether that is actually your highest potential. Such is the requirement of love, you can’t just have it as a hobby.

I had a pretty bad stomach pain today.  Not very sharp but pretty broad, covering much of the actual stomach.  (Not guts, I am pretty sure.)  I suspect this was because I had gone to sleep on a too full stomach on Friday and suffered acid reflux in my sleep.  I got suddenly very tired earlier than expected that night.

Anyway, as usual when I am sick, I took a hard look at my life.  Ironically, two days from now I am going to read in an excerpt from one of Ryuho Okawa’s books that this is one of the primary functions of illness and a valuable service illness serves in our lives. That is, if we have a tendency to not take a good look at our lives otherwise, which successful people often don’t.  I suspect I don’t LOOK successful to you guys, but I sure feel pretty upbeat almost all of the time. Except when I am sick, and look back on my life and realize that I have just had fun almost all the time.  That I have almost never done anything worthwhile.

See, the real problem isn’t that I do anything wrong. It happens occasionally, but lately it has been pretty small stuff.  The real problem isn’t even that I don’t do anything good, although we are homing in now. The real problem is that I don’t even care. I don’t even want to live a life of giving love and selfless service.  I am fine with just having a good time. Obviously not in the booze and night clubs sense, but playing computer games, watching anime, reading or writing a book that interests me, or once in a while sit down and polish my halo a little before I move on to something more fun. I may help someone somehow in some small way if I don’t have to go out of my way to find them.

I guess in a sense I have kind of given up on humans.  The difference between them and me has become so large, they can’t reasonably be expected to understand me at all, or even to not spontaneously misunderstand me completely.

Let me give you an example. For as Okawa (“El Cantare” among friends) says, evil arises when people don’t understand or feel that they are not being understood. In the first case, they should get to learn to know others better; in the second case, they should learn to communicate better.  Well, I seem to understand pretty near anyone (possibly except some particularly demonic or saintly people, I am not eager to put that to the test) but I clearly fail to communicate. Actually, I have almost given up communication.  There is a pop song about that, did you know?  It is called “Communication”  by The Cardigans.  If you don’t know it, you owe it to yourself to listen to it at least once. It is a love song but it has a much deeper layer for those who get it. The chorus goes like this:

But that’s not an invitation
That’s all I get
If this is communication
I disconnect
I’ve seen you, I know you
But I don’t know
How to connect, so I disconnect.

The female singer goes through this for a while, and you’d think she’d eventually take a hint and give up. Certainly that is my natural response. Perhaps it is some fundamental feminine principle in the human soul or something, but she kind of keeps it more open in the last verse:

Well this is an invitation
It’s not a threat
If you want communication
That’s what you get
I’m talking and talking
But I don’t know
How to connect
And I hold a record for being patient
With your kind of hesitation
I need you, you want me
But I don’t know
How to connect, so I disconnect
I disconnect.

I guess I hold a record for being patient too, after more than 10 years of writing an open letter to my unknown friends.  But I don’t know how to connect either.  I just kind of hope that humans – or at least one or two humans – sometime in the future will come where I have been and see my footprints, and know that someone went this way before.

I should give you a good example, but the entry is creeping up on the “tl;dr” limit. (“Too Long; Didn’t Read.) Perhaps later, if there is a later. For now, I feel the urge to just get this post up and think a bit about Hell before I go to bed.

The explosion that wasn’t

Something really strange happened last night, at 2AM. Lately I haven’t been awake as late as 2AM, but last night I was, for various reasons.  I was not even in bed, although I was going there soon.  A train had just passed by.  There are a couple houses and a road between here and the railway track, but when the heavy goods trains pass at their best speed, it still makes the house shake a little.  I have gotten used to it, so it doesn’t wake me if I am already asleep, but I sure notice it when I’m awake.  This was a pretty heavy one, so I consciously noticed.

Half a minute later, perhaps, I heard a single explosion, and the house jumped, but only once.  It was not even like thunder, rolling over a distance. It was just one single BOOM, as if someone fired off a cannon nearby.  But obviously people in this quiet neighborhood don’t have cannons.

I got up, put on clothes, checked the basement (nothing unusual there) and went out. I went as far as to the railway station, about five minutes walk, but nowhere did I see or hear anything unusual at all.  If it had been that far away and still so loud, it would have had the whole neighborhood awake, but I was the only one around.  There were no unusual sounds or sights or even smells. Well, there was a strange chemical smell when I passed the closest neighbor, but it had been there in the afternoon too, when I mowed the lawn, many hours before.

I went to bed eventually, and got up and it was daylight, but still nothing strange anywhere.  I have just written it off by now.

Mostly in jest I thought perhaps it happened in the parallel world that my bathroom is connected to. You see, this house has a nice enough bathroom, considering that it is from around 1970. The tub is a bit cramped for me, but was probably ideal for the grandparent generation.  Anyway, it is a nice bathroom except that I often hear voices there. Not in the bathroom itself, but just outside.  However, one of the lawns is outside. When I check, there is no one there, and no one visible or audible around the neighbor’s house either. The voices sound very much like Norwegian, in the sounds and the tone, but I can never understand what they say.  They are slightly distorted, so that I almost think I might understand it if they spoke a little more clearly, but it never happens.

If the voices are not enough, there are the smells.  Now, we all know that bathrooms can smell.  That is not what I am talking about.  There are smells that don’t come from anything in my house.  The strongest one is of turpentine or white spirit or some such.  It happens some days and can last for hours.  There is no such thing in the house that I know of.  Sometimes it smells of flowers or perhaps some kind of shampoo or something with flower smell.  None of mine are like that.  It is not always the same, I think. It generally does not last as long as the turpentine smell though.  The smell is generally not at the same time as the voices, though I won’t say it has never happened.

Most likely there is some way the plumbing is carrying sound (and smell) from one of the neighbors further away.  I really doubt there is a parallel earth that is connected to ours through my bathroom, even though that would certainly explain it all.  If so, I’m afraid they had a very bad night there.  I will feel a slight jolt of relief when I next hear the voices outside, knowing that they are still alive… wherever they are.

Quite different, eh?


Angels of different religions are working together?  Wouldn’t that be nice. This is how the  new Japanese religion “Happy Science” sees the world, although their concept of angels is closer to bodhisattva, or saint in English.

Google is very helpful.  For instance, they have a wealth of information regarding Kofuku-no-Kagaku, or “Happy Science” as it is now called in English. Admittedly some of it is from people who are generally worried about sects, not least after another Japanese sect gassed the underground, killing several and sending hundreds to the hospital.  But I ought to know that sects are not all the same.  After all, I spent some of the best years of my life as a “sect member” in the Christian Church.  Even Christianity itself was described as a sect when it was new (it’s in the Bible, mail me if you can’t find it).  So that is not my worry.  But there are bound to be doctrinal differences, given that they are not even Christians.

Then again…  Let me quote from “Bibliography of Japanese new religions” by Peter Bernard Clarke:

“Kofuku-no-Kagaku considers, therefore, that humans have chosen the most appropriate life environment in order to practice their own ‘soul-training’. In this sense, their view on life on earth is quite different from that of the Judao-Christian tradition, for example.”

(It is spelled Judao-Christian now?) I cannot speak for the Judaists, but we Christians believe that it is God who chooses the most appropriate life environment in order for us to practice our ‘soul-training’.  So yeah, there is a difference.  If we chose it for ourselves, we might make a mistake and end up with a less than optimal environment.  If God chooses, then “we know that all things cooperate for the benefit of those who love God, those who are called according to his design.” (Romans 8:28.) So yeah, there is a difference.  But it is also strikingly similar, at least compared to the common view these days that all things happen by blind chance and that things cannot possibly be good unless they feel good.

Well, I prefer things that feel good myself, but I try to learn from other things too if they are not so bad that I am fully occupied with panicking…

Obviously the extensive mythology of Atlantis, Mu, the Greek gods etc is something alien to me.  As I’ve said before, if they want to be literal about it, I can’t follow them there.  (In that case, they should probably also avoid a job in geology and related sciences. Then again the same applies to Christians who are literal about Noah’s Flood.) But interestingly, Happy Science seem to accept central parts of the Bible, including the story of Moses and Jesus.  I saw a trailer for one of their movies on YouTube, and it showed short sequences from those two.  There is also a snippet from their movie “The Golden Laws” depicting the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  (Albeit with two somewhat confused kids from the future as spectators.)

Anyway, it is kind of interesting that people living so far apart agree on so many things.  I mean, until a few centuries ago our ancestors hadn’t seen their ancestors since the deep of the Ice Age.  Why don’t they for instance think it is more important for your eternal life to eat with chopsticks than to be faithful to your spouse? According to the experts, religion is just a social glue, right?  Obviously I don’t believe that.  I believe that certain “laws of eternity” are written inside us, much like instincts are written inside animals, but we have much greater freedom in whether or not to follow them.

Trip: Done!

Amazingly, I actually did make it to the train, and to the 5 hours introduction to the new software in Oslo.  Count me more surprised than anyone else.  I even could not sleep more than about an hour and a half in the night.  It was a warm and itchy night, but even after a shower I still could not sleep.  That is pretty rare for me.

The taxi was on time, and the train was mostly empty. I had a double seat for myself to curl up.  Even so, I only slept lightly and for a fairly short time.  I did spend some time meditating though.  Still, I was barely conscious during the first hours of the presentation. Luckily I was not the one presenting, and luckily I did not actually get qwerty on my face. I think I got most of what we were supposed to.

Oh, and I had the invitation mail and the road map on my mobile phone, which came in quite handy to find the place.  I hadn’t been there in something like 10 years, and I my sense of direction is somewhat like a parrot fresh out of its cage. I was afraid I would have to use the GPS and Google maps, but the mail and attachments were enough (despite a false start.)

The train home was a bit slower, and also I spent the first half of it with only one seat, which made it hard to sleep.  After a while the guy beside me left.  He was probably just fed up with me cuddling up to him. ^_^ After that I slept well for a while and was not tired at all for the rest of the evening.

I left home a bit before 5 AM and came back a bit past 22 (10PM).  In my physical mailbox was a package from Amazon with the movie “Peaceful Warrior”.  It is not particularly good, don’t buy it.  Just borrow it.  Luckily it was fairly cheap, at least by Norwegian standards. Some people I kinda know have been talking about it so I got curious.  I guess there is always the Pirate Bay, but for some reason they seem to have a shortage of spiritual films…

Anyway, with that there was no time left, quite the opposite.

Travel day

When this entry is posted, I should be on my way to Oslo, for my job.  I bought train tickets online on Monday, and fetched them at the railway station yesterday.  All is in readiness, for casual values of readiness.

Based on the past, however, I will probably not be on that train.  Something will have happened to keep me from going.  Most likely I got sick during the night or in the morning. But I may also have overslept despite having both my clock radio and mobile phone set to 4AM.  The taxi that should take me to the train station did not find my address, or the road was blocked for some reason.  I read the wrong time on the ticket, despite reading it 10 times.  I forgot the tickets.  I have no idea what, but for the last couple years or more I have been virtually unable  to travel any long distance.

And I used to enjoy traveling with train, too.  Oh well.  Let us see what happens this time.

Hell is inside, too


If I were transported to a realm in which my outer appearance matched my inner self, which would it be?  I honestly am not sure.  But I hope it’s not quite as bad as the one to the left – anymore. I remember when it was, though.

I have spent a bit of time piecing together more pages of the Happy Science lore.  It is not like I’m converting or anything, but it is interesting to see what lies beneath when people so remote from me in so many ways still come up with at least some ideas strikingly similar to what I believe too.

The notion of Satan and Hell are a bit different from the Christian version. I am not sure how it goes along with the Buddhist version. Yes, for some reason Buddhism also has a number of hells, some of which I have seen depicted.  Unfortunately, the Chinese Hell of Lust was rather arousing. -_-  I don’t think that painting conveyed reality in any sense or form!  The glimpse of the same Hell in the anime did not have that effect. Anyway! Hell! Who raised Hell, when and where?

According to Happy Science (fiction, most readers would mentally add), it all started when El Cantare, the highest humanoid spirit of Earth, invited a bunch of less evolved humanoids from the Magellanic Cloud.  Because of the prevalence of dinosaurs and such at the time, this hardy race was picked.  But they were rather rash, as were their guiding spirits (gods, if you will).  One of these was incarnated on Earth for some good purpose but got addicted to the pleasures of the mortal realm.  Instead of going back to the Heavens for another round of selfless service, he decided to create a realm in the image of Earth, in the 4th dimension (the one closest above us, the first stop of the afterlife).  This degenerated into Hell, as the people who accumulated there secreted dark thoughts and emotions that clouded the Heavenly Light so it did not reach them.  It also cast its shadow on Earth, with all the troubles this caused.

So far we have a vaguely science-fiction like version of the familiar story.  But the interesting part comes next.  According to their book, Hell is not specifically about the afterlife.  It starts already in this life (as does Heaven, but most of us have heard that already):  It is inside us.  Or at least inside those who haven’t gotten rid of it yet.  The way to avoid demons is to not have any dark recesses in the mind where the Light doesn’t get in.  If I have those, I have a connection to Hell already.

I agree. Unfortunately, having dark recesses is something that comes very easily.  And you don’t even have to believe in Hell to already be there, to some degree.  It is something I notice most blatantly with my liberal acquaintances, although I don’t know for sure whether this is because they are more prone to carry around their private Hell, or I just notice it more easily because it is more different from my own tendencies, so I don’t have the filter of automatic self defense.  Perhaps some of each.

In any case, there is a lot of whining there about how much injustice there is in the world, and not least concerning themselves.  Their idea of being discriminated against is roughly my idea of “that’s human life”:  Having to deal with people who don’t like you and accept you, being looked down at for being different, getting less money than some people who are at best your equals, being misunderstood over and over etc.  Seriously, this is my ordinary life, but it is not Hell for me.  We can’t all be The Real Princess.  People are unlikely to consider us as important as they consider themselves.  The greater problem is when this is mutual, as it all too often is.  That is my Hell: the Evil Inside.

Let’s say you live in Europe or some liberal state in America. You’re gay so you can’t marry in the state where you would prefer to do so.  And it eats you inside and you can’t let it go, because it’s just not fair, and they are repressing you, and you think you have the right to hate them and anyone who tells you to stop whining and get on with living.  You can still live together as if you were married; you can eat together, you can sleep together, you can set up contracts and wills etc to regulate your economy as if you were married etc. But it’s not enough, because you’re still regarded as Not Equal. Well, that’s true, but is it really worth going to Hell for while still alive?

What if you had a sexuality that you simply could not accept because of your conscience, even if it was technically legal?  What if you knew that you could never have one satisfying sexual intercourse over the duration of your earthly life? Or any form of lasting, intimate relationship?  What if you, for good measure, had to always be an outsider, be viewed with suspicion, pay more and earn less, because you did not fit society’s automatic duonormativity?  What if, in addition to all this, you had to listen to the whining of people you would otherwise like, if they could just let go of the pea under their mattress? Would you suffer then?

Hell no! Outrage is something you do, not something that happens to you.  Pain is something that happens to you. I don’t like pain.  And I certainly don’t like to inflict mental and spiritual pain on myself.  The hand I was dealt had some high cards and some low cards. I’m not going to bluff. But I am going to play the hand I was dealt.  And ideally, play it reasonably well.

Of course, this applies to other areas of life as well.  It isn’t all about sex, although it may sometimes feel that way when you don’t get any.  (I hear it becomes pretty trivial pretty fast. But what do I know.) So, someone is earning more than you do, even though they have the same job, because of some triviality.  So, you decide, after thinking this over for a long time and considering all options, that this is a good reason to go to Hell while still alive, to become bitter, to try to enlist other people in your crusade, and to never ever let it go.  Because it just ain’t fair!

Tell me about it, as if I haven’t experienced it firsthand for years and years. But life isn’t fair. Death is fair, probably.  We have a saying in Norwegian: “I døden er vi alle lik.”  This can equally be translated as “In death we are all equal” or “In death we are all corpses”, depending on your mood.  What I don’t believe is that in death we all go to Hell. But I don’t know for sure, I have only faith in this regard.  What I do know for sure, however, is that in life we don’t all go to Hell.

There are many such matters. I only thought of these in particular because there are people I really wish to have as my friends, but there is this chasm set between us. Their life is my hell, and quite possibly the other way around.  I am the kind of loser you would not want to be if you had the choice between being a loser and just die.  But I live most of my time, if not in Heaven, then surely somewhere right outside, where the light is bright, the smell of the flowers reach me, and the faint music from inside.  I may have pain from time to time, and I don’t live up to my own hopes.  (This is probably because I think too highly of myself, but some aspirations are allowed, I think.)  And I probably whine too much about those things, because you never see your own whining as clearly as that of others. But let me say this:  I would not swap even my current, half-baked soul for all the sex, money and fame of the world.

The Kingdom of Heaven is within you.  And so is the Kingdom of Hell.  May we all choose wisely.