This book will assert that the influx of Greco-Romans into the early Church changed the direction of Christian thought towards one which included the body. At the same time, the ideological and polemical thrust of an eternal tortuous afterlife for the wicked became essential.
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We provide complimentary e-inspection copies of primary textbooks to instructors considering our books for course adoption. Most VitalSource eBooks are available in a reflowable EPUB format which allows you to resize text to suit you and enables other accessibility features.
Where the content of the eBook requires a specific layout, or contains maths or other special characters, the eBook will be available in PDF PBK format, which cannot be reflowed. For both formats the functionality available will depend on how you access the ebook via Bookshelf Online in your browser or via the Bookshelf app on your PC or mobile device. Stay on CRCPress. Preview this Book. Add to Wish List. Close Preview. Toggle navigation Additional Book Information. Description Table of Contents Author s Bio. Summary This book begins by arguing that early Greek reflection on the afterlife and immortality insisted on the importance of the physical body whereas a wealth of Jewish texts from the Hebrew Bible, Second Temple Judaism and early Pauline Christianity understood post-mortem existence to be that of the soul alone.
My research interests include: concepts of afterlife in Jewish and Christian traditions and conflict and violence in the Abrahamic faiths.
Request an e-inspection copy. Due to the dangers the afterlife posed, the Book of the Dead was placed in the tomb with the body as well as food, jewellery, and 'curses'. They also used the "opening of the mouth". Ancient Egyptian civilization was based on religion; their belief in the rebirth after death became the driving force behind their funeral practices.
Death was simply a temporary interruption, rather than complete cessation, of life, and that eternal life could be ensured by means like piety to the gods, preservation of the physical form through mummification , and the provision of statuary and other funerary equipment. Each human consisted of the physical body, the ka , the ba , and the akh.
The Name and Shadow were also living entities. To enjoy the afterlife, all these elements had to be sustained and protected from harm. On March 30, , a spokesman for the Egyptian Culture Ministry claimed it had unearthed a large red granite door in Luxor with inscriptions by User ,  a powerful adviser to the 18th dynasty Queen Hatshepsut who ruled between BC and BC, the longest of any woman. It believes the false door is a 'door to the Afterlife'. According to the archaeologists, the door was reused in a structure in Roman Egypt.click
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The Greek god Hades is known in Greek mythology as the king of the underworld , a place where souls live after death. Hermes would leave the soul on the banks of the River Styx , the river between life and death. Charon , also known as the ferry-man, would take the soul across the river to Hades, if the soul had gold: Upon burial, the family of the dead soul would put coins under the deceased's tongue. Once crossed, the soul would be judged by Aeacus , Rhadamanthus and King Minos.
The Elysian Fields were for the ones that lived pure lives. It consisted of green fields, valleys and mountains, everyone there was peaceful and contented, and the Sun always shone there. Tartarus was for the people that blasphemed against the gods, or were simply rebellious and consciously evil.
The Asphodel Fields were for a varied selection of human souls: Those whose sins equalled their goodness, were indecisive in their lives, or were not judged. The Fields of Punishment were for people that had sinned often, but not so much as to be deserving of Tartarus.
In Tartarus, the soul would be punished by being burned in lava, or stretched on racks.
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Some heroes of Greek legend are allowed to visit the underworld. The Romans had a similar belief system about the afterlife, with Hades becoming known as Pluto. In the ancient Greek myth about the Labours of Heracles , the hero Heracles had to travel to the underworld to capture Cerberus , the three-headed guard dog, as one of his tasks. In Dream of Scipio , Cicero describes what seems to be an out of body experience , of the soul traveling high above the Earth, looking down at the small planet, from far away.
By the River Styx, he sees the souls of those not given a proper burial, forced to wait by the river until someone buries them.
While down there, along with the dead, he is shown the place where the wrongly convicted reside, the fields of sorrow where those who committed suicide and now regret it reside, including Aeneas' former lover, the warriors and shades, Tartarus where the titans and powerful non-mortal enemies of the Olympians reside where he can hear the groans of the imprisoned, the palace of Pluto , and the fields of Elysium where the descendants of the divine and bravest heroes reside.
He sees the river of forgetfulness, Lethe , which the dead must drink to forget their life and begin anew.
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Lastly, his father shows him all of the future heroes of Rome who will live if Aeneas fulfills his destiny in founding the city. The Poetic and Prose Eddas , the oldest sources for information on the Norse concept of the afterlife, vary in their description of the several realms that are described as falling under this topic.
The most well-known are:. It is explained that those souls that have turned toward God will experience gladness, while those who have lived in error will become aware of the opportunities they have lost. Also, in the Baha'i view, souls will be able to recognize the accomplishments of the souls that have reached the same level as themselves, but not those that have achieved a rank higher than them.
Mainstream Christianity professes belief in the Nicene Creed , and English versions of the Nicene Creed in current use include the phrase: "We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. When questioned by the Sadducees about the resurrection of the dead in a context relating to who one's spouse would be if one had been married several times in life , Jesus said that marriage will be irrelevant after the resurrection as the resurrected will be like the angels in heaven.
Jesus also maintained that the time would come when the dead would hear the voice of the Son of God , and all who were in the tombs would come out, who have done good deeds to the resurrection of life, but those who have done wicked deeds to the resurrection of condemnation. The Book of Enoch describes Sheol as divided into four compartments for four types of the dead: the faithful saints who await resurrection in Paradise , the merely virtuous who await their reward, the wicked who await punishment, and the wicked who have already been punished and will not be resurrected on Judgment Day.
The book of 2 Maccabees gives a clear account of the dead awaiting a future resurrection and judgment, plus prayers and offerings for the dead to remove the burden of sin. The author of Luke recounts the story of Lazarus and the rich man , which shows people in Hades awaiting the resurrection either in comfort or torment. The author of the Book of Revelation writes about God and the angels versus Satan and demons in an epic battle at the end of times when all souls are judged.
There is mention of ghostly bodies of past prophets, and the transfiguration. The non-canonical Acts of Paul and Thecla speak of the efficacy of prayer for the dead , so that they might be "translated to a state of happiness".
Hippolytus of Rome pictures the underworld Hades as a place where the righteous dead, awaiting in the bosom of Abraham their resurrection, rejoice at their future prospect, while the unrighteous are tormented at the sight of the " lake of unquenchable fire " into which they are destined to be cast.
Gregory of Nyssa discusses the long-before believed possibility of purification of souls after death. Pope Gregory I repeats the concept, articulated over a century earlier by Gregory of Nyssa that the saved suffer purification after death, in connection with which he wrote of "purgatorial flames". The noun "purgatorium" Latin: place of cleansing  is used for the first time to describe a state of painful purification of the saved after life. The same word in adjectival form purgatorius -a -um , cleansing , which appears also in non-religious writing,  was already used by Christians such as Augustine of Hippo and Pope Gregory I to refer to an after-death cleansing.
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During the Age of Enlightenment , theologians and philosophers presented various philosophies and beliefs. A notable example is Emanuel Swedenborg who wrote some 18 theological works which describe in detail the nature of the afterlife according to his claimed spiritual experiences, the most famous of which is Heaven and Hell. The "Spiritual Combat", a written work by Lorenzo Scupoli , states that four assaults are attempted by the "evil one" at the hour of death. However, those who die in unrepented mortal sin go to hell.
In the s, the Catechism of the Catholic Church defined hell not as punishment imposed on the sinner but rather as the sinner's self-exclusion from God. Unlike other Christian groups, the Catholic Church teaches that those who die in a state of grace, but still carry venial sin go to a place called Purgatory where they undergo purification to enter Heaven. Despite popular opinion, Limbo, which was elaborated upon by theologians beginning in the Middle Ages, was never recognized as a dogma of the Catholic Church , yet, at times, it has been a very popular theological theory within the Church.
Limbo is a theory that unbaptized but innocent souls, such as those of infants, virtuous individuals who lived before Jesus Christ was born on earth , or those that die before baptism exist in neither Heaven or Hell proper. Therefore, these souls neither merit the beatific vision , nor are subjected to any punishment, because they are not guilty of any personal sin although they have not received baptism, so still bear original sin.
So they are generally seen as existing in a state of natural, but not supernatural, happiness, until the end of time. In other Christian denominations it has been described as an intermediate place or state of confinement in oblivion and neglect. The notion of purgatory is associated particularly with the Catholic Church. In the Catholic Church, all those who die in God's grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven or the final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned.
The tradition of the church, by reference to certain texts of scripture, speaks of a "cleansing fire" although it is not always called purgatory. Anglicans of the Anglo-Catholic tradition generally also hold to the belief.