A letter from Hell

Hi, everyone!

I am writing you this letter from Hell because now that I’m here, it is nothing like I envisioned it would be! So here is a heads-up message for all of you still holding on to your terrestrial bodies.

First of all, Hell is actually cold and there is no Mr. Devil ruling over it. To my utter dismay, God rules over Hell equally with Heaven. But this actually makes sense because no one can live without God’s living force, which brings order to all spiritual environments. I can personally validate that Hell does consist of some sense of Divine Order.

This situation brings me great suffering, because I hate God and everything God represents. I am happily self-centered and enjoy being placed above others in importance. Unfortunately for me, everybody else here wants to be top honcho, too. So we are constantly conspiring against each other and our “helpfulness” is only motivated by our hidden agendas.

My cousin is in heaven. I was able to talk to her more when I first arrived in the spiritual world from the planet earth. But she had decided to love God and others more than herself. I could not agree with her on those points, so we naturally went our separate ways and I eventually gravitated to where I am in Hell as I began to live out my personal desires.

I see no reason why I should suffer for doing things my way—instead of God’s way!

But here’s the clincher—Heaven and Hell are outside of nature and spacetime and their ecosystems mirror the qualities of their inhabitants’ hearts and minds. I like being in Hell because its psychoscape perfectly reflects the deepest sentiments of my inner world. You might say that the quality of my inner thoughts and feelings are projected outside of me to form my unique spiritual environment. I see lots of thistles, thorny bushes and savage animals all around me—and I relate to it all!

Another complaint I have is that I don’t get any food around here unless I perform some “useful task” for others—#!*($%#@! Unfortunately for me, spiritual food consists of genuine love and goodness rather than deceit and there are absolutely no handouts here. And, from what I learned from my cousin, there are no handouts in heaven, either. Everything must be reciprocal. Commerce in the spiritual world is the sharing one’s inner treasures with each other. This just makes me gag. My cousin and her friends call that kind of silliness “angelic happiness.” Good grief! I’d rather hoard those delights all for myself. So, what is seen as a blessing to my cousin is pure slave labor to me. I usually do menial things around here like mow the grass or chop wood but as soon as that drudgery is over, I can attend to my personal lusts and pleasures.

However, when I go too far I am usually punished. To my surprise these punishments usually involve my experiencing the actual hatred that drives my own actions—kind of like spiritual karma, I guess. Where is there justice in the universe?

I think I want to form a group of my associates and plot a way to turn Heaven into a realm that is more to our liking. God has a warped sense of happiness!

Sincerely yours,

Dubious Dan



About thegodguy

EDWARD F. SYLVIA, M.T.S. Philosopher/Theologian Edward F. Sylvia attended the School of Visual Arts in New York and received his Master of Theological Studies at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, CA and a Certificate of Swedenborgian Studies from the Swedenborgian House of Studies. He is a member of the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences (C.T.N.S.) and the Swedenborg Scientific Association (S.S.A.). Award-winning author of "Sermon From the Compost Pile: Seven Steps Toward Creating An Inner Garden" and "Proving God," which fulfills a continuing vision that God’s fingerprints of love can be found everywhere in the manifest universe. His most recent book, "Swedenborg & Gurdjieff: The Missing Links" is an edgy collection of anti-intuitive essays for personal transformation that challenges and inspires. He has been a student of the ideas of both Emanuel Swedenborg and George I. Gurdjieff for over thirty years. Read more about TheGodGuy, his books and his ideas at http://www.staircasepress.com
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18 Responses to A letter from Hell

  1. Love all the posts

    hope I keep receiving them in heaven or at less in the spiritual world

  2. Kenny Rumrill says:

    Nice post, Edward! Can we have a “letter from Heaven”, a reply from Dan’s cousin? Just a thought…

    • thegodguy says:

      Dear Kenny,

      Everyone writes about heaven! I thought I would be different. Maybe I will write a “letter from Heaven” someday. However, Dan does communicate the key differences between these two opposing spiritual realms by his complaints. If it were not for influences coming to us from Hell we would have no parameters or boundaries to determine the extent of our heavenly loves. Glad you liked the article.

      Spiritually yours,

  3. Madrepérola says:

    lol, Edward ! 🙂
    But nevertheless I’m afraid hell is worst then that. I mean, those people there are not satisfied if they don’t make others suffer, so… it must be a complex world, to please Stalin, and all the others.
    No wonder the Ancient Egyptians conceived of the hell as chaos.
    Also very nice of you not to have chosen the traditional “cousin” in hell, and the guy in heaven 🙂

    • thegodguy says:

      Yes – I left out many gory details (which would take a book to explain). But if you are familiar with Emanuel Swedenborg’s theology you know that Hell (like Heaven) has distinct levels. Hell is not the same for everyone! Also, we are all candidates for Hell (not just Stalin or Hitler – who have no authority in Hell) and I wanted to make this self-centered (thus chaotic) realm relevant to the average Tom and Jane.

      Spiritually yours,

  4. thegodguy says:


    I appreciate the friendship (even with my poor cerebrum-focused brain)!

    Spiritually yours,

  5. rob says:

    Why isn’t annihilation an option? We didn’t all ask to be born and be saddled with a nature that would make us unable to love God and others. What kind of love puts us in such a situation?

    • thegodguy says:

      Dear rob,

      You are ignoring the reality of how humans treat each other on this planet. People take their dispositions with them into the spiritual world. The depths of hell represent annihilation – if you understand annihilation as rejection of God (the ultimate reality).

      Spiritually yours,

      • rob says:

        People have reasons for being the way they are. Not everyone is capable of not going through life guarded and hostile. Life experiences can do that. They can also turn a person to the better, via the passage of time. A jerk at 35 can become much more understanding and compassionate at 70; but according to your faith, an accident in between will set in steel that person’s eternal experience. Something tells me that Swedenborg may never have considered this in his fatalistic visions.

        Further, if all children go to the higher realms, where is the “free will”? What are the odds that ALL young would choose the good? Clearly, surviving childhood is a tragedy, because then one has the ability to damn one’s self, where one didn’t have that ability before. God should have set it all up to where everyone dies before reaching an age where he/she would be so dangerously and horribly accountable. That he didn’t, that he knew that billions would suffer in lower realms with no reprieve belies the idea that he is love. Only an Orwellian abuse of language could call such love.

  6. thegodguy says:

    Dear rob,

    According to Swedenborg God forgives everyone’s sins, yet people still dive headlong into hell. It is not what we have done in the past (or accidents) that get us into eternal trouble but what we are heart-bent to continue doing. Hell is not a place you go to but the chosen quality of your inner spirit. After death people simple gravitate towards their heart’s delight. Justice happens within us. Swedenborg also stated that everyone is allowed to enter heaven, both the good and the bad. However, those who prefer self-love over heavenly love feel dread and suffocated in heaven’s environment of mutual love. This causes the evil to flee heaven.

    Children are in innocence and do not have the reasoning powers to chose or resist evil. In fact, when increased innocence is needed to keep the spiritual world in proper equilibrium The Lord God wisely uses evil forces to make up the difference by taking the lives of many children.

    Love is meaningless without free will. A Creator who has given the human race free will and to be able to discern what one prefers is evidence of a loving God. Those in hell simply have chosen to love harmful things.

    Spiritually yours,

  7. Scott says:

    According to Swedenborg is change for the better possible after death? If a person creates a world of hell after death would it be possible for them to grow and for their hellish world to become less and less hellish or do people enter a state of absolute stasis where they can’t change?

    • thegodguy says:

      Dear Scott,

      Change is possible after death BUT one of the hardest things to change is what we love. What we love gives us the greatest pleasure, therefore if heaven runs counter to this pleasure we will resist it and seek the realm in which others share our same pleasures. Heaven (or Hell) is not some place you go to, it is something you become!

      Spiritually yours,

      • rob says:

        What about a person who’s greatest love is say, art or science, yet this same person doesn’t get along with other people, maybe even holds them in disdain. If his/her love of art or science gives this person their greatest pleasure, will they wind up in hell anyway because they don’t love their fellow man?

        It seems to me that Swedenborg teaches that the criteria of one’s greatest love is based on one’s relationship to the rest of humanity. So can we really say that it is simply one’s greatest love that determines the state of one’s afterlife?

  8. thegodguy says:

    Dear Rob,

    What is the point of loving art or science – to enrich yourself or others? The answer will determine where one will gravitate towards in the other life. Hell is full of talented and smart people!

    Spiritually yours,

  9. Rob says:

    What do you mean by “enrich”? When I speak of a person loving art or science I mean those things for their own sake. When I enjoy a beautiful song or picture the notion of enriching myself or anyone else is completely absent. I enjoy it for itself.

  10. thegodguy says:

    Rob, you are one of the lucky ones! (Although today’s Art and Science portray our follies.)

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