HEAVEN AND HELL OR THE DIVINE JUSTICE ACCORDING TO SPIRITISM

Allan Kardec

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2. The doctrine of eternal punishment, like that of a physical Hell, was useful while the intellectual and moral backwardness of humankind required that they should be held in check by the fear of incurring the doom thus held up before their imagination. While they remained at too low a point of advancement to be efficaciously acted upon by the prospect of merely moral suffering, it is evident that they would have been as little restrained by the idea of any merely temporary punishment; and it is equally evident that they would have been incapable of comprehending the justice of graduated and proportionate penalties, because they could not have appreciated the various shades of right or wrong action, or the relative importance of either extenuating or aggravating circumstances.

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