Hell and Paradise
Apart from the material plane and the eons of Heavens mentioned above, there are other spatial dimensions that exist on the opposite (relative to the Creator) end of the coarseness-subtlety scale. These are the layers of hell.
One can perceive them on some negative places of power.
Places of power  are characterized by the presence of some kind of dominant energy from non-material worlds, which affects the state of embodied beings, including people.
Places of power can be classified into positive and negative ones, according to their positive or negative effect. There are positive places of power that are extremely favorable for certain spiritual work or for healing. Negative places of power allow one to know what life in hell in its different manifestations looks like.
The sizes of places of power vary from one meter to several kilometers.
It is important for us to understand what determines the state and the spatial dimension (i.e. hell or paradise) where people find themselves upon the death of their material bodies. The answer is quite simple: in the other world, people remain in the same state to which they accustomed themselves while living in the material body. One continues to exist in this state until the next incarnation, which usually happens after hundreds of years. This is why it is extremely important to master the control of one’s own emotions and not to live like an animal reacting reflexively to pleasant and unpleasant outer factors and to impulses of the body.
Various emotional states can be classified according to the scale of coarseness-subtlety.
Among the coarsest ones are hatred, fury, spite, horror, fear, despair, anxiety, jealousy, depression, resentment, feeling of being suppressed by someone, grief of separation, etc.
To the middle range one can assign such states as haste, impatience, sport or work excitement, sexual passion (passionate desire), etc.
Among the higher states of consciousness, there is tenderness (including sexually colored one), the states that arise when one attunes to harmonious phenomena of nature (morning, spring, coziness, calm, songs of the best bird singers, playing animals, etc.) or to appropriate works of art.
There are even higher states of consciousness. They are not present among the earthly emotions, and there is no earthly thing that can induce them. They can be cognized only in the higher meditations of Mergence with the Holy Spirits and with God-the-Father in His Abode.
Out of the three groups of states listed above, the first is called tamas, the second (intermediate) — rajas, and third — sattva. Tamas, rajas, and sattva are earthly attributes and are called gunas. The highest categories are transcendent to the gunas.
Man has a possibility to ascend from one guna to another and to higher levels by making spiritual efforts, but also can descend.
It should be stressed that the point here is not only about the ability to feel certain emotions, but about states of the consciousness habitual for a person. And the states habitual at the moment of the death of the body determine one’s destiny for hundreds of years.
Let each of us think: “Do I want to stay for so long in the states of the first category among other beings like me?” This is what hell is.
If we blame for our emotions “them” — other people or certain circumstances — we are wrong. We ourselves choose to attune to these bad people or circumstances, whereas we should attune to God, to the Divine that can save us from hell. The Apostle Paul said about this: “… Shrink from evil, cleave to good!” (Rom 12:9).
For the same reason one should keep to the following principles:
“Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who insult you and persecute you…” (Matt 5:44)
“Settle matters quickly with your adversary!…” (Matt 5:25)
“Blessed are the peacemakers…” (Matt 5:9)
“… Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles”. (Matt 5:38-41)
“Do not judge…” (Matt 7:1)
“… Do not condemn!…” (Luke 6:37)
“… Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul!” (Matt 10:28)
“… Give to everyone who asks of you. And from those who take away your goods do not ask them back” (Luke 6:30).
“Who are wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such ‘wisdom’ does not come down from Heaven, but is worldly, unspiritual, of the devil!…” (James 3:13-15)
“They who claim to be in the light but hate their brothers or sisters are in the darkness!” (1 John 2:9)
“Bless those who persecute you, bless and do not curse…
“Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone…
“Never avenge yourselves!…
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink…
“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good!” (Rom 12:14-21)
“Why do you judge your brother? … Each of us will give an account of oneself to God. Therefore let us stop judging each other. Instead, make up the mind not to put any obstacle in your brother’s way.” (Rom 14:10-13)
“… If someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore that person gently. But watch yourself, lest you also be tempted!” (Gal 6:1)
“Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers!” (Eph 4:29)
“… You must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips!…” (Col 3:8)
“… Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult!” (1 Peter 3:9)
“… But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them!” (1 John 2:11)
“Such actions would not bring you to salvation, and you would fall into that state of ethical degradation where theft, lying, and murder pass for generous deeds.
“… There is one miracle that is possible for (any) one to accomplish. It is when, full of a sincere belief, one decides to root out from the mind all evil thoughts, and to attain the Goal, forsakes the paths of iniquity!” (The Life of Saint Issa, 9:17; 11:8).
Perhaps, some readers may object: “To stay away from evil and to care only about one’s own salvation is egotism! And what about wicked people then? — should we let them do all kinds of bad things?!”.
You are wrong: we are speaking about states of the consciousness, first of all. Even fighting against criminals, against the most abominable human behavior — if this is our duty, it can be done without hatred, fury, aversion, but in the state of emotional calm and attunement to Divinity. And by hellish emotions we can only do harm — both to ourselves and to others…
It is also important to understand that strong emotions storm not only inside the body. They create energy fields around it, which affect other people and can even make them ill.
If we follow Christ’s principles, we will not be accustoming ourselves and other people to hell even when participating in earthly battles.
Let me repeat that the above said does not imply that one has to stay away from social life, from the needs of other people and not only of people. “There is no greater love than this: to lay down your life for your friends!” (John 15:13), said Jesus. Yet, when doing this, one should not feel hatred, anger, or contempt, but feel calm and love and keep the attention on the Highest Goal — the Heavenly Father. It is in this way that Jesus went to His death.
… While being in material bodies, we can change at will our habits of living in particular emotional states with the help of the methods of psychical self-regulation and various meditative techniques. We can also receive help from other people — in order to become as good as possible. But once the body has died, it is impossible to change one’s status. And no one will be able to help. Jesus Christ did not take sinners out of hell, prayers of saints or of anyone else cannot do it either. One can change one’s own destiny only by oneself when living in the material body.
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Our destinies in the contemporary or future incarnations are affected by our vices. For example, if we ignore the pain of other living beings (not only of people) and make them suffer, then God will weave us away from this habit. How? By placing us in situations where we will suffer pain ourselves, so that we can — by experiencing pain — learn to be compassionate to the pain of others. In this way we program our destinies to become “hell on Earth”, but in such conditions it will be much harder to refine our emotions.
So, what should we do to get rid of vices that destroy us? — Repent!