Here's one that people talk about all the time. Damnation. Every story that has ever been written on any sort of terrible monster or demon at some point gets to the true cause of horror: Eternal Damnation. Whether it be dragging you into a realm like Hell, Purgatory, Limbo or just states of being that mimic these mythological realms: that is where the fear of such entities come from.
You'll notice that the monsters that gave you the most vivid nightmares were not the ones who merely caused you physical harm. No, it was those that could make your eternal existence one of unbearable torment. And almost every great religion has a concept of this. Mortal beings though you are, you have somehow found a way to come up with a rudimentary understanding of infinity. And- to the baser individual who isn't capable of piecing together a thought process without heavy reference to some dusty old book- that's all they need to know.
Infinite happiness or infinite sadness. Well obviously one is better than the other. Who wouldn't want to be eternally happy? These are the fools who honestly believe that winning the lottery would suddenly give their lives purpose.
Why do they refuse to accept the basic reality of life: what makes our existence worthwhile are the peaks and the troughs. Both light and darkness, and each in their own manner and timing. He knows this. He understands better than we do. Heaven is not a place of everlasting joy.
It's a place where we are ascended beings; those who are put through new and better trials to continue to improve ourselves. We have new challenges yes, but the rewards are far greater the second, third or hundredth time around. It's not quite reincarnation, more a continued progression. You might consider this mortal existence as a “prologue” to the real deal. I wouldn't know the precise details. I was the first to fail that test.
Yes, go ahead and put on that Rolling Stones song, this is one of “those stories”. I am, quite frankly, a little disturbed at how I am being portrayed on sites like this. I don't mind the brilliant and cunning aspect, but the bouts of sudden violence and malignancy for malignancy's sake part I find quite misinformed. Also, I am not the “father of all lies”. He created truth, and therefore lies. Just as he created light and therefore darkness. I was merely the first in a long line of pioneers who sought another way...
Unfortunately for us, there wasn't one.
Not that I am displeased with my current role. I continue to try and gain followers in the hopes that He will understand how unfair his first proposition was. How immoral it was to place somebody like myself in a position to take power and then rip it away from my hands prematurely.
But I digress... this isn't a story about me. This is a story about Hell. Why should I tell a cautionary tale? Because it doesn't matter. No matter what Hell has ever been described as it hasn't ever been enough to stop sinners from sinning. No ghoul or monsters will stop the lustful from their lascivious deeds. No punishments keep the wrathful from harming their victims. No torment on Heaven or Earth is enough to stop the greedy from taking from everyone.
All I am doing is something that He didn't. I'm being fair, and warning you properly what is in store for you should you... elect to find another way.
Forget fire and brimstone; Hell is not so unoriginal. Pain really is not an immortal concept. So intrigued by pain are those of my kin that in the few cases of possession (that you may have read about, or seen popular b-movies produced about) we actually try to harm ourselves just to feel it. Like I said, peaks and troughs.
No Hell is altogether quite different. It's even worse for my kin, I was the first and was therefore given the duty of leading others here- a task I do all too well. Nevertheless, I still feel its effects. Yes, even Satan is bound by Hell.
Let's start off at the beginning. You die. Normally, if you'd led a “good” life, you would appear before Him, he would you send you off on your next adventure on a higher plane of existence, one that is alien to me. But instead, since you chose to live in the manner that we have, you would instead awaken a few hours after the moment of your death in a room. This is of course a metaphor for the actual thing, but I am speaking to beings who barely have a working knowledge of their own plane of existence, so you will forgive me if I dumb this down a bit.
As I say, you will be in a room, completely cut off from any other manner of interaction, any other entity. You will be compelled before too long to try and communicate with somebody else; searching for something else to do apart from merely existing. Time will suddenly lose all meaning to you, as it does to all who are immortal. Even the ticking of the clock is a distraction and Hell has no time for distractions, if you'll pardon a truly awful pun.
You'll feel like you should be getting desperate in your search, but that feeling will not be present. In fact, no feelings shall be present. None. You will be an emotionless husk of your former self. Now before long you will learn to “fake” emotions in order to try and bring some sanity to this mad place but your heart of heart will know that these halfhearted attempts do not fill you.
You continue your search ever-questioning why you search. Lifetimes go by. You no longer stop but continually search for something else, anybody else, to talk to. To interact with. To belong with. Just when you are about to give up the search you will find somebody else in that same room with you. In fact you will find everyone else, all of us who have been damned to hell.
And we are all precisely like you. Emotionless dregs of spirit. Merely combination of particles forming souls that no longer have any purpose. You will not take joy in your victory, not even the halfhearted kind. Being with us, is no different really than being by yourself. The conversations you have with them will be no different than the conversations you had in your own mind.
And then you will wait. The last purpose of your existence was to find those who have been damned like you and that last hint of a normal existence has been snuffed out for eternity. So you wait. You will wait and wait for some hope. Or some happiness. At that point, were you capable of it you would be so mad that you would even accept never-ending torture as a preferable alternative.
This is where we exist. This is Hell. Never-ending nothingness.
Once in a while, through mortal design, we are allowed to return to your world. Never quite to interact physically, except to those foolish enough to open themselves up to possession, but enough to witness. And we've been in that place for so long that now that we can remember what it is like to feel again, all we can feel is hate. Hatred for you people and your pointless, idling lives. The way you sit at your computers and on your phones for hours at a time, consuming so much and giving back nothing! And the true hatred comes from the fact that even that existence still has more meaning than our own!
God gave mortals the ability to call us out of Hell. Whenever you hear of a demon summoning, the mortal is the offender. They are the ones who rip us out of that existence, but only enough to see what we will never be able to have again. Only enough to see what we have failed to do. Never giving us the power to do anything about our miserable state in life. Even if there is a possession, that gives one of us at most another 80 years, but compared to eternity, 80 years is to us as a blink is to you.
And that is why we are called “demons”; it's from the Latin daemonium which means “lesser spirit”. That is all that we are. Lesser entities. Struggling through eternity for more. For anything. And that, dear readers is what Hell is.
Living forever not in torment, but in worthlessness.