Lewis Imagines Hell

"For humor involves a sense of proportion and a power of seeing yourself from the outside. Whatever else we attribute to beings who sinned through pride, we must not attribute this. Satan, said Chesterton, fell through force of gravity. We must picture Hell as a state where everyone is perpetually concerned about his own dignity and advancement, where everyone has a grievance, and where everyone lives the deadly serious passions of envy, self-importance and resentment."

"Bad angels, like bad men, are entirely practical. They have two motives. The first is fear of punishment; for as totalitarian countries have their camps for toruture, so my Hell contains deeper Hells, it's ' "houses of correction" '. Their second motive is a kind of hunger. I feign that devils can eat one another; and us. Even in human life we have seen the passion to dominate, almost to digest, one's fellow; to make his whole intellectual and emotional life merely an extension of one's own-to hate one's hatred and resent one's grievances and indulge one's egoism through him as well as through oneself. His own little store of passion must of course be suppressed to make room for ours. If he resists this suppression he is being very selfish.
On Earth, this desire is often called ' "love" '. In Hell I feign that they recognise it as hunger. But there the hunger is more ravenous, and a fuller satisfation is possible. There, I suggest, the stronger spirit-there are perhaps no bodies to impede the operation-can really and irrevocably suck the weaker into itself and permanently gorge its own being on the weaker's outraged individuality. It is (I feign) for this that devils desire human souls and the souls of one another. It is for this that Satan desires all his own followers and all the sons of Eve and all the host of Heaven. His dream is of the day when all shall be inside him and all that says ' "I" ' can say it only through him. This, I surmise, is the bloated-spider parody, the only imitaion he can understand, of that unfathomed bounty whereby God turns tools into servants and servants into sons, so that they may be at last reunited with Him in the perfect freedom of a love offered from the height of the utter individualities which he has liberated them to be."

from The Screwtape Letters-Preface~C.S. Lewis

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God Respects Me When I Work, But He Loves Me When I Sing

I have a framed picture of that sentence that was given to me by someone I truly, truly love and she knows how much I love to sing. She showed me how my singing can be cathartic and also a gift to God.

Right now, I am trying to get this sadness out of my heart.

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On Coming Up For Air

I thought I would post something today about what I'm reading in my little daily devotional book Beyond The Looking Glass: Daily Devotions for Overcoming Anorexia and Bulimia.

Phillipians 4: 11-13

I've learned to be content in whatever situation I'm in.
Phi 4:12 I know how to live in poverty or prosperity. No matter what the situation, I've learned the secret of how to live when I'm full or when I'm hungry, when I have too much or when I have too little.
Phi 4:13 I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me.

It seems like I can never be content in whatever situation I find myself. I go in and out of disordered eating still even after trying to recover from it for 17 years. I stopped drinking; I stopped using, but I can't really give myself credit for those things because if I do, I'm afraid that I'll get complacent and fall back into that hole. I can't give myself credit for the little things I accomplish either for the same reason. The funny thing is: I am complacent. I have this bad habit of being very lazy in almost every aspect of my life. It takes me forever to make any change because I don't like change. It's scary to me even though a change in some areas would be a good thing. It's hard to change bad habits.

I want to be not complacent, but learn to be content in whatever situation I happen to be. That sounds like I'm being reactive instead of proactive, I know. I don't think being content is necessarily just letting things happen. I think it's that I have to accept that God is going work everything out for my benefit (whether it be a good situation or a bad situation; both can work for my betterment) and to just accept what he has for me and learn to be content with it.

I've been having so much anxiety lately due to work (or lack of) situations and whatnot that nearly every day I feel, at some point during the day, that my heart is going to beat right out of my chest. It just comes on unexpectedly. Sometimes, I can just be sitting somewhere and it just comes over me when I'm not even thinking about my money situation. I should know by now, after all these years, that God will take care of me. Why do I have to keep re-learning the same lessons? Why can't I remember? Why can't I trust? I think one of the reasons is that my perception of God is colored by my perception of my parents. You are supposed to be able to trust your parents, but I was never able to fully trust mine. It's like my mistrust of the people who were supposed to take care of me stands between me and God because I see God as that one person who always takes care of me. I trust sometimes and then sometimes I don't. God is not mutable. This is something that I need to keep telling myself over and over again.

It's so much easier to keep repeating the negative things, isn't it? Because that's what I'm familiar with.

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