I have been chatting about heaven and hell with some friends lately and mk asked me how and why I started thinking at length about this bottomless topic. There were two things that really spurred on my thinking and has led me to continue to reading on the topic. The first is a quote from Fyodor Dostoyevsky:
“What is hell? Hell is the inability to love.”
And the second thing that began to peak my interest was an interview posted by Doug Pagitt, pastor of Solomon’s Porch in Minneapolis. I had the opportunity to meet Doug at the Reclaiming Paul conference and he seemed like a swell fellow. But anyways, he was on a radio show with a self-proclaimed fundamentalist and from the transcript, it sounds as if it might have got a little heated. But you should take a glance at the interview. In it, Doug discusses hell as not necessarily being a physical place, but rather a state of being. He uses the terminology of “disconnection” and “disintegration” from God. When the interviewer brings up judgment, Doug simply refers to this as interaction with God (I’m not sure if I’m completely on board with this idea . . . yet). It can be a bit foolish at times with both of them trying to clarify and the interviewer asking Doug to be the judge of humans. But at the same time, maybe it will provide some light-hearted humor.