This is the sixth of a series of impressions of the dwellings of Jehovah and Satan
For the first impression follow the link how to tell you're in heaven
Thursday, December 28, 2017
porca miseria, where the hell are Pinamonti's marbles
Do you know Pinamonti? I do know Pinamonti. I prayed heaven: let this cup pass from me. Just joking. But he came to my place. Those of you who are familiar with James Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man will probably know the man. Although James Joyce didn't mention his name, his biographers have disclosed the sources of which is one of the most pungent and gruesome passages of Joyce's work. It is also the far most insulting description of my place. In A Portrait, Stephen Dedalus, alter ego of JJ, has to hear a sermon, and the sermon is about my abode. The sermon tells schoolboys about the place of my reigning. - Adam and Eve, my dear boys, were [...] created by God in order that the seats in heaven left vacant by the fall of Lucifer and his rebellious angels might be filled again ... - Alas, my dear little boys, they too fell ... - And then the voice of God was heard in that garden, calling His creature man to account ... The preacher's voice sank. He paused, joined his palms, for an instant, parted them. Then he resumed: - Now, let us try for a moment to realise, as far as we can, the nature of that abode of the damned ... - They lie in exterior darkness ... - The horror of this strait and dark prison is increased by its awful stench ... - But the stench is not, horrible though it is, the greatest physical torment to which the damned are subjected. The torment of fire is the greatest torment ... - Our earthly fire again, no matter how fierce or widespread it may be, is always of a limited extent: but the lake of fire in hell is boundless ... - And yet what I have said as to the strength and quality and boundlessness of the fire is as nothing when compared to its intensity ... - Consider finally that the torment of this infernal prison is increased by the company of the damned themselves ... - Last of all consider the frightful torment to those damned souls, tempters, and tempted alike, of the company of the devils ... If you think I'm quoting at length - no, I'm not. And this was only the morning session. The preacher began to speak in a quiet friendly tone. His face was kind and he joined gently the fingers of each hand, forming a frail cage by the union of their tips. - This morning we endeavoured, in our reflection upon hell [...] the composition of place [...] the material character of that place and of the physical torment which all who are in hell endure. This evening we shall consider for a few moments the nature of the spiritual torments ... I'll spare you the details, as I did above. I have summarized in 340 words what James Joyce tells you in 17 pages. James Joyce was a great sinner, and a joyous sinner too. But having heard that sermon as a fourteen year old boy, some time after his first experience with the whores, he came down the aisle of the chapel, his legs shaking and the scalp of his head trembling ... The sermon was held by a preacher, but it was not his sermon. No, this sermon is written, and apparently preserved to repeat it now and then, to make young boys hear it. The author was Giovanni Pietro Pinamonti, a great preacher, who came here at the beginning of what you call the 18th century. As I say, I didn't want to have him here. I didn’t begrudge him having heaven, and I didn’t begrudge Jehovah having him. When he died, and he came down the path to these places I camouflaged the entrance to my embankment place. But how sturdy that man was. He looked and looked, he rummaged over the place, poked in the leaves and twigs, and he found my path. There he was, looking me in my face. - Aha, there we are. - You are wrong. - No, I want to see hell as it is. If I got it right. - Impossible, it's either Hell or Heaven, no way back. Please I warn you, this is the highway to hell. - I'm not afraid. The good Lord has a lot of us saved from Hell. Mines were fruitless attempts to change his mind. Inutile. He was in the boat, before I could stop him. I rowed my boat in silence to my landing. He was also the first to disembark. Anyway, his goose was cooked. - Where 's the fire? - We don't have fires here. He looked around. He saw mountains, yielding prosperity fot the people, and hills in righteousness. He saw green pastures, still waters. Then his eye caught something. - What's that? He pointed at a fireplace. You could see some flames. - That's for the Jacuzzi. He looked bewildered. - Is this Hell? I nodded. - Then I better go to heaven, that must be ... I interrupted the man brutally, took his arm, brought him to my mountain and pointed at the singing business of Jehovah. - That's Jehovah's place, which to you from now on is forbidden territory. Make yourself comfortable and have a nice day. I had seen well. This guy was a nuisance. Everyday something to complain. Loaded with frustrations. How could I get rid of that man? Well, that's the biggest problem. You, and you ... and you are already a few times raptured. Your elements have found each other again, and again, and have ordered for the envelope you are. That's not the case with Pinamonti. I hate to think of it but it seems to me that the constituting elements of Pinamonti are happy to be redeemed from the obligation to bear Pinamonti's envelope, and refuse, against every statistical law, to reconfigure the state which asks for the return of this fire-and-brimstone sermoner. And, let's be honest, who would blame them? Who, in heaven or on earth, would like to meet again with a man who has made it his life's work to frighten kids and merry sinners, at the same time inventing the cruellest tortures.