The Divine Comedy: DanteThe character of Dante in The Divine Comedy who descended into theinferno caused me to stop and think about this awful place.
As the reader I gotto take an imaginary journey with Dante to a horrible place where I do not careabout going. While Dante descended into hell I plan on ascending into heavensomeday. Dante had a choice to make whether or not to get back on the rightpath. It came down to heaven or hell – choose.
I think it was willed for Dante to see this place while he was stillliving. By seeing hell while he was alive Dante could be sure and make theright choices to find his way back to the straight path. Being on the rightpath in his lifetime would ensure he would not spend eternity in such amiserable place. I believe the whole purpose of this journey into hell was tolet Dante see the anguish there and choose. Perhaps this was a divine warning.
In Canto 2, Beatrice, the symbol of Divine Love, an angelic spirit was sent tohelp aid Dante from his error and help him return back. This is purely loveand compassion at its best. Sending someone into hell to rescue another personout of there. Great lengths were taken to help Dante return back to thestraight way.
I do not believe such action was taken if Dante was to end up inhell all along.For some reason midway in Dante’s life’s journey he had gone astray andat this point was searching for answers. I guess hell was as good a place tostart the search as any place. Something for sure had led him astray and Dantewas going to find out what it was. Strange as it may seem Dante did find theanswers he was looking for in hell.Dante had entered into an awful place full of darkness and evil.
Dantedid not realize to return back would not be easy, the Leopard stood blocking himevery turn to keep him from getting back. As a Christian I could relate to this.I am often so busy (blocked) with life that I forget about the important thingsas a Christian I should be doing, like reading the Bible and praying. I makeplans that tomorrow I will pray or read the Bible but something tries to blockme from doing so.
Dante probably never imagined getting off the right path would result ina visit to such a horrible place. There was weeping, cursing, and fearsurrounded the place. Frightened, Dante continued on, but the souls moaningand crying out for help never stopped. There was no help in this terribleplace and certainly no hope. I think right about at that point Dante had aconscious check.
He was probably willing at that point to do just aboutanything to get out of the inferno. I know I would have done anything to getout of there and fast. Hell probably made Dante fear judgment and to make thechoice to avoid going there at all cost.There was a couple aspects that I liked and related to in this piece.
Dante had a vivid imagination. He was very detailed with his vision of hell.I really liked that. What I related most to was like Dante if I go astray Ican get back, there is hope. The whole scenario made me stop and think about mychoices. I have a free will just like Dante to choose.