GATES OF HELL
On this earth, there are places said to be a gateway to an elaborately constructed realm of torture beneath our feet, a journey into an alternate dimension. For thousands of years people have believed this to be true. The Bible speaks of a place where we will descend, due to our choices here and because of eternal consequences thereof, therefore if you did bad actions, you will be there. Enormous torment and horror comes from the stories told of people who have had near death experiences. Hell’s demons and devils which inflict constant pain to the souls which reside there. For instance, Xibalba, roughly translated as “place of fear”, is the name of the underworld in Maya mythology, ruled by the Maya death gods and their helpers. In 16th-century Verapaz, the entrance to Xibalba was traditionally held to be a cave in the vicinity of Cobán, Guatemala. According to some of the K’iche’ Maya presently living in the vicinity, the area is still associated with death. Another physical incarnation of the road to Xibalba as viewed by the K’iche’ is the dark rift which is visible in the Milky Way. Xibalba is described in the Popol Vuh as a court below the surface of the Earth associated with death and with twelve gods or powerful rulers known as the Lords of Xibalba. The first among the Maya Death Gods ruling Xibalba were Hun-Came (One Death) and Vucub-Came (Seven Death), though Hun-Came is the more senior of the two. The remaining ten Lords are often referred to as demons and are given commission and domain over various forms of human suffering: to cause sickness, starvation, fear, destitution, pain, and ultimately death. These Lords all work in pairs and are Xiquiripat (Flying Scab) and Cuchumaquic (Gathered Blood), who sicken people’s blood; Ahalpuh (Pus Demon) and Ahalgana (Jaundice Demon), who cause people’s bodies to swell up; Chamiabac (Bone Staff) and Chamiaholom (Skull Staff), who turn dead bodies into skeletons; Ahalmez (Sweepings Demon) and...
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