Observations placeholder

Dante - Inferno [envy and discontent]

Identifier

014658

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

Envy – wanting something someone else has, resenting the fact that someone has something you don't and in effect not being happy with what you have, overall unhappiness caused by discontent.  If ever you find yourself saying 'I wish I was....' - as pretty as her, as wealthy as him, as strong as ..., you are being envious without thinking through what it is like being them.

Within this category Dante also included those who never understood their destiny and thus never used the talents they were given.  In effect led a purposeless life.

Dante placed them in the underworld

A description of the experience

Dante – The Divine Comedy  INFERNO I

CANTO III

 We have come now to the place where, I have told you
You will find the people for whom there is only grief
Those who have lost the benefit of the intellect

With that he put his hand on top of mine
And looked glad, which made me feel more comfortable
And so he led me into that secret place

Here, there were sighings and complaints and howlings
Resounding in an air under no stars
So that at first I found myself in tears

A jumble of languages, deformities of speech
Words which were pain, with intonations of anger
Voices which were deep and hoarse, hands clapped together

Made altogether a tumult, round and round
Unceasingly in that air in which all was colourless
Just as it might be in a perpetual sandstorm

And I, who felt my head surrounded by horrors
Said 'Master, what then is it that I am hearing?
And what people are these, so crushed by pain?'

He answered 'That is the manner of existence
Endured by the sad souls of those who lived
Without occasion for infamy or praise

…................

I said 'Master, what it is that lies so heavily
Upon them, that they call out as they do?'
He answered 'I will tell you very briefly.

They are without even the hope of death
Their blind existence is of such abjection
That they are envious of every other fate

The source of the experience

Dante Alighieri

Concepts, symbols and science items

Symbols

Underworld

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps

Activities

Commonsteps

References