Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Circle 4: Hoarders and Wasters

In this level the hoarders, which is someone who hoards or keeps, and the wasters, which is someone who wastes or does not use wisely, are separated into two groups. Their punishment is that they will forever be plagued by dead weight.

While living the hoarders and wasters did not understand the true value of money and to them it was just dead weight so while in the inferno they have to continuously push around a huge weight. The hoarders push the huge weight at the wasters screaming "Why do you waste?" and the wasters push it right back screaming "Why do you hoard?" . And they continue this little charade over and over. This punishment was chosen because of their lack of judgement and control. And now they have to push this dead weight around forever.

The Christian influences that appear in this level are all of the high positions in the church. Dante puts Popes, Cardinals, and Priests all in this level signifying the corruptness of the church, or what he thought of them.

Pagan influences show up in the characters he places in the inferno like the three headed dog. And also the fact that the punishment is based on the crime. Because in Christianity, all sins are equal, lying has the same consequences as murder. This is not true with Paganism.

If Dante had to put famous people today in the inferno, he would probably put most of the celebs of our time, because some of the things they spend money on is ridiculous.
Daisy, Janna, Curtis

Friday, April 13, 2007

Circle 7: Violence

1. Circle 7 is divided into three rounds: violence against neighbors,violence against themselves, violence against god, art, and nature. The sinners are people who are violent against their neighbors, themselves, nature, God and art. For the sinners violent again others, they are surrounded in boiling blood equal to that that they have spilled. For sinners violent against themselves, they are encased in thorny trees whose leaves are eaten by Harpies. The eating of the leaves causes the wounds to bleed,and only as long as the blood flows can the souls of the suicides speak-they destroyed their bodies so they are denied a human form. Their main doing in life was self-destruction so they may only speak through that which destroys them. Harpies are defilers of all they come in contact with. For the sinners against God, nature and art, they are exposed to varying degrees of exposure to fire above and below.

2. The sinners deserve to be in the boiling blood that they spilled because they chose to harm to their neighbors. For sinners violent against themselves, they are denied a human form because they destroyed their own.

3. In Christian myth, humans fell from innocence in the Garden of Eden to wickedness around the time of the Great Flood.

4.The different levels of punishment and hell being the underworld are some pagan influences.

5. Some of the famous people that Dante placed in round one are the tyrants Alexander, Dionysius, Ezzelino and Obizzo of Este, Attila, Pyrrhus, Sextus and Rinier Corneto and Rinier Pazzo. In round two, Dante sends Lano and an unidentified florentine who commited suicide. In round three, Brunetto, Capaneus, Guido Guerra, Tegghiaio Aldrobandi, and Reginaldo Scrovegni are sent to this circle.

6. Some people Dante might put into this circle from today might be the Oklahoma City bomber, and Jon Bennett Ramsey's Murderer.

Lindsey, Kyle, Brandon

Circle 5 The Wrathful and Sullen

1. The type of sinners in circle five are people who held anger in their hearts, were sullen, and were full of wrath. They live in a marsh called Styx. They are immersed in mud and souls lie under the mud making bubbles with each cry. There is fighting going on constantly. People always hitting, screaming, and biting. There is never any peace.

2. I think that this particular punishment was chosen for these sinners because when they should have been happy in the light of the sun and they were not, now they will live sullen forever.

3. To be wrathful and sullen is a sin in the christian religion. The Bible teaches us to turn the other cheak. It also says in the Bible not to let the sun go down on ones wrath.

4. On example of pagan influences in circle 5 is that circle 5 is the last circle of upper hell. Also, the fact that there are different levels of hell and different punishments for the different sinners. Sin is sin not matter how great or small.

5. One person that Dante places in circle 5 is Filippo Argenti.

6. Dante would probably place Angelina Jolie and Jennifer Aniston in circle 5. I am sure that they are very angry toward one another. Although they haven't been in an actual fight, they probably would if they had a chance.

Krista, Enotris, Ashley, Nicole

Dante Study Guide

Click here for a great study guide on Dante's Inferno from Northern Virginia Community College.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Circle 3 Gluttony

1. The people in Circle 3 were lazy and produced nothing while they were on Earth. They did not use their God-given talents but instead, wallowed in food and drink. Their punishment was that they were sent to Circle 3 and spent eternity in a gigantic garbage dump. They lie in an icy paste and experience large hailstones, contaminated waste, and snow as black as night. The sinners are swollen and obscene. They too are like gargage and buriend in slush. Cerberus, the three headed dog of hell, guards them and attacks them with his claws and teeth.

2. The sinners are fat and obscene in hell because of their choice to be lazy and to do absolutely nothing with their life on earth. Cerberus does the same to them in Circle 3 as they once did in their life. He slavers over them and repeatedly attacks them as they had once slavered over food and drink on Earth.

3. In the Christian religions gluttony is a part of the seven deadly sins. It is a misplaced desire of food or it's withholding from the needy. In the Bible, gluttony is addressed by teachings of moderation and self-control. It is mentioned in the book of Proverbs. "Do not join those who drink too much wine or gorge themselves on meat, for drunkards and gluttons become poor, and drowsiness clothes them in rags." Proverbs 23:20-21

4. The belief in the different levels of hell is a paganistic view. Also, the belief of Cerberus guarding the sinners in Circle 3 was influenced by Greek mythology. We also read about Cerberus in the Odyssey.

5. Dante encounters Ciacco in Circle 3. Ciacco was known as the "hog" and was a citizen of Florence.

6. We think that Dante would have placed Kevin Federline in Circle 3 because he is famous only for marrying Britney Spears. He has not done anything significant with his life to contribute to society.

Tracy Field, Sarah Sumrall, & Jennifer Hyatt

Cocytus - The Ninth Circle

Cocytus, the ninth level of hell, is a huge, frozen lake at the bottom of the Central Pit. It is divided into 4 circles: Caina, Antenora, Ptolomea, and Judecca. Each is named after the four worst traitors in that category. Here are punished the four kinds of traitors: the Treacherous to Kin, Treacherous to Country, Treacherous to Guests and Hosts, and Treacherous to Masters. They are punished by being frozen up to their necks in the first circle (Treacherous to Kin), leaving their heads and faces exposed to the freezing air which grows ever colder towards the center of the lake. Some are completely encased in ice (circle 4 - Treacherous to Masters). The one's whose heads are exposed are allowed to bow their heads and weep in the first circle (Treacherous to Kin), but the tears of their anguish in circle 2 (Treacherous to Country) are frozen as soon as they encounter the cold air because they are unable to bend their necks to shield their faces from the wind. The tears of circle 3 (Treacherous to Guests and Hosts) freeze in the eye socket, and those of circle 4 have their bodies, faces and all, completely covered by ice. At the center of the lake, the three worst traitors suffer the worst punishment by being chewed eternally by Satan himself. Satan is here at the center because he is considered to be the Ultimate Traitor - the angel who rebelled against God Himself.

According to the book, being frozen in ice is likened to the conditions of the individuals heart when alive. These cold-hearted individuals had little or no love in their hearts for either God or mankind, neither did they have the kind of human warmth that allows remorse. In the lake they are allowed this remorse in the first and second circles, with the tears being frozen from the second circle on.

The presence of Satan and the reference to him as "Lucifer", "Beelzebub", and "Great Worm of Evil", etc., are all influenced by Christian doctrine. Also, the first round or circle being named after the first treasonist or traitor to kin, Cain. Round four is named after the disciple who betrayed Jesus, Judas Iscariot. There are other similarities such as Hell itself (also a teaching of Christianity), the punishment of sinners there, and the lightness or severity of the punishment according to sins committed. The Christian Holidays commemorating Jesus death and resurrection, Good Friday and Easter, play a part in the time-line of the story as well.

There is some pagan influence from Greek mythology such as Hell being referred to as the underworld, its different levels of punishment, the worst sinners being punished in the lowest part of hell - a pit, and the similarity of Satan to the three-headed dog Cerberus.

There were about 20 people in all that Dante encounters and recognizes, but the most notable and recognizable to us would probably be Judas Iscariot and Brutus (the best friend (I think) and top general who murdered Julius Caesar). Along with Cassius, they are eternally chewed by the three-headed Satan.

Traitors of our own time who Dante might ascribe to this level of Hell might be liberals (in general) and Nancy Pelosi (if he were conservatively-minded or Republican), Republicans and George Bush (if he were a liberal), Condaleeza Rice (if he were a liberal African American), Saddam Hussein, O.J. Simpson, and John Walker Lindh. Also Adam Yahiye Gadahn who was indicted Oct. 11, 2006 for treason against the U.S. - the first indictment since 1952. If he were to consider the traitors over the last 200 year period he would probably think of Alger Hiss, the Rosenbergs, Confederates (during American Civil War), Benedict Arnold, and Aaron Burr.

Circle VI The Heretics

The sinners that are in this level are those who did violence to God by denying immortality. They believed that the soul dies with the body so therefore their punishment was an eternal grave. We think that the reason this punishment was chosen is the sinners believed there was no life after death.They are doomed to spend their eternity in Circle VI in a grave until judgement day when the graves and their souls will be sealed forever. The sins in this level were called Malice. They were fraud, violence, murder, mayhem, harassment, plunder, arson, extortion, homicides, and destroyers.

There are many Christian influences in the Inferno the first being the denial of God which in the Christian belief is the greatest sin - eternal damnation. Christians also bury their dead in graves. Christians also believe in messengers of God. Christians believe that when they go to heaven they will receive a glorified body but in hell you will stay in your earthly body.

Although there are many Christian influences, there are also many pagan influences. The first being Erichtho who casts dark spells. Also the sinners in the grave are able to see into the future and into the past, but they do not have an awareness of the present.

The famous people that Dante meets is Farinata degeli Uberti, a great war chief that Dante admired although he was Dante's political enemy. Cavalcante dei Cavalcanti, son of Guido Cavalcanti a contempory poet and friend of Dante. Cardinal of the Ubaldini of Dantes time said to be involved in money and politics.

One person Dante would put in this part of hell would be Madelyn Murray O'Hair. She was the driving force behind the Supreme Court taking prayer out of schools. She was an atheist. The Columbine school shooters, Charles Manson, BTK Killer, John Allen Mohammed(Washington sniper) Jon Benet Ramsey's killer.

Stacy Therrell, Erica Gillie, Cheryl Jordan