824. CHAPTER 8.
CONTINUATION CONCERNING THE HELLS.
HERE CONCERNING THE HELLS OF THOSE WHO HAVE PASSED THEIR LIVES IN ADULTERIES AND LASCIVIOUSNESS. ALSO CONCERNING THE HELLS OF THE DECEITFUL, AND OF SORCERESSES.
Beneath the heel of the right foot* is a hell inhabited by those who have delighted in cruelty and at the same time in adulteries, and have felt in them the greatest delight of their lives. It is remarkable that those who have been cruel in the life of the body have been also, more than others, adulterers. Such are those who are in this hell, where they practice unspeakable methods of cruelty. By their phantasies they make themselves vessels as for braying, like those used for braying herbs, and pestles, wherewith they bray** and torture whomsoever they can; and also as it were broad axes, like those of executioners; and augers, with which they do cruel violence to one another; not to mention other direful cruelties. Some of the Jews are there who in former times so cruelly treated the Gentiles. And at this day that hell is increasing, especially from those who come from the so-called Christian world and have had all the delight of their life in adulteries, who also are for the most part cruel. Sometimes their delight is turned into the stench of human excrement, which exhales excessively when that hell is opened. I perceived it in the world of spirits, and at the time almost fell into a swoon from the effect of it. This noisome, excrementitious smell by turns fills the hell, and by turns ceases; for it is their delight from adulteries which is turned into such offensiveness. In process of time, when they have passed through a given period in such things, they are left alone and sit in torment, becoming like unsightly skeletons, but still living.
* The author speaks of places in the spiritual world as being situated in accordance with their correspondence to the human body. [Reviser.]
** See Prov. 27:22; 2 Sam. 12:31; and Spiritual Experiences 2639.