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HeledRaquiaArquaSheolRealms-negative


Sheol SHEOLW1.ward for sheol
GatesSheol
Devices of Passage
GreenCrystal2 Green Crystal
DragonSword Eternity
Sections
Gates of Sheol
Dominion: Brain Maze
Judgment: Halls of Doppelgangis
Salvation: Puzzles
Island of Threads
Chamber of the Soulstone
Chronology
Chapter XVI: The Gate
Chapter XVII: Father of Lies
Chapter XVIII: Threads
Chapter XIX: The Gathering
Audio
30px-Gnome-speakernotes Background Music

Sheol (in Hebrew שאול Sh'ol, pronounced "Sheh-ole") is one of the four main levels that Adam visits upon his journey through the Realms of the Haunting. It is sometimes referred to as Hell[1][2][3][4][5] or Gehenna. But as Hawk states,[6] it is usually identified as the topmost layer of Hell (the lowest being the so-called Pit) and harbourage of the Soulstone. According to Rebecca, it is commonly regarded as a place where the dead exist as shades or as a place of torment for the wicked.[7]

Gates of SheolEdit

The actual Realm of Sheol is preceded by a short passage leading up to the Gates of Sheol, a hallowed grove in which it is against all law to spill blood. Upon entering for the first time, Adam remarks that this grove reminds him of Dante's Divine Comedy. Abaddon has dominion over this sanctum, only he possesses the power to grant passage through the gates.

The Halls of DoppelgangisEdit

Main article: Halls of Doppelgangis
HallsOfDoppelgangis

Halls of Doppelgangis

Entering the Halls of Doppelgangis, the demon of insight and personality, Adam encounters a reflection of himself sitting on a throne and declaring that,[8]

Goodness reflects the light; and evil bears the seed of all darkness. Choose well.

In some traditions, seeing one's own Doppelgänger is an omen of death, or a warning of an approaching danger.

Adam furthermore meets (the real) Abaddon again who is held prisoner by Claude Florentine by means of a red light. Abaddon informs Adam that he is guardian of the Key to the Abyss. The key actually is not to be understood in the mundane sense of the word but consists of three tests which Adam has to take separately in order to gain access to the Chamber of the Soulstone.

Key to the AbyssEdit

First Test: BrainsEdit

The first area of Sheol is a gloomy plain. When leaving the gate in the centre, we'll be attacked by a WIELRUL2 Wielder. Subsequently, the plain starts to demerge into various terraces which Adam has to descend in order to find 16 brains and feed them to an automaton. The brains are scattered across the floor but are also hidden inside the various disorienting tunnels that characterise the architecture of this level. Shedding some light on the confusing layout of this place, Derell Licht has kindly provided a hand-drawn Brain.maze Map of the Brain Maze.

SheolBrains

Depository for the sixteen collected brains

After having put all the brains into the automaton, a bell will toll announcing the appearance of Vine[9], a powerful creature who has dominion over this area, will appear and initiate a fight. Defeating him will level the terraces again and reward us with the PowerofDominion Power of Dominion scroll, which will protect Adam from an illusion created by Belial, in which he finds Rebecca chained to a rock on the Island of Threads, prompting him to let down his guard and consequently giving Belial the opportunity to snatch away Eternity and the Shrive.

Second Test: MirrorsEdit

Upon arriving in the Halls of Doppelgangis, Adam meets an apparition, a doppelganger of his, who tells him that "Goodness reflects the light and evil bears the seed of all darkness. Choose well, and the gate shall be yours." In the center of the Halls, Adam spots Abaddon who is bound by a red light by Florentine. After their conversation, Adam is supposed to dash the various mirrors which are set up within the circular hallway surrounding the hall. If he gets too close to a mirror, a demon will appear which is invincible to Adam's weapons and can only be obliterated by dashing the mirror when the demon is reflected in it.

Third Test: PuzzlesEdit

After having smashed all the mirrors in the Halls of Doppelgangis, Adam is allowed to enter the archway behind the throne and enter a rotunda with eight puzzles which constitutes the third test to the Key of the Abyss, also referred to as Level of Salvation in the official Interplay walkthrough.[10]

The challenge here is to solve eight puzzles and turn a series of wheels in order to remove the circle of fire that's blocking the DIGATE1.gate in sheol dimension gate. After having completed these trials, Adam will have to overcome Pyrichiel[10] himself in order to receive the PerditionShield Perdition Shield which will protect him from fire.

Solution table for quick reference Edit

# Room Solution
1
SheolPuzzle1
Stand on the third square from the left (brown), and assuming that North is in front of you, go N 3 times, W 2 times, N 2 times and E 3 times. Enter and press the hand. Turn around and go to the edge. With N behind you now, advance S x 2, E x 2, S x 3, W x 1, N x 1, W x 1, S x 1, W x 2, S x 1. OK, go to the next niche on your left.[11]
2
SheolPuzzle2
Facing north, imagine that you have 7 spaces going down, which we will call them, N to S, 1 to 7; and then 4 spaces going across, W to E, A to D. Place the blocks in the following spaces: 7A, 6B, 5C, 4B, 3C, 2C, 1B. Press End to see what you are doing, walk transversally on the blocks, get into the corridor and press the hand in the circle.[11]
3
SheolPuzzle3
Apply your right shoulder to the wall and follow it. If you come across a mirror, keep your right shoulder on it and continue. Eventually you'll come to a circle with a hand. Press it, apply your left shoulder to the wall and go out the way you came in.[11]
4
SheolPuzzle4Solution
You have to break a mirror by bouncing a shot from ball to ball. The direction of the shot can be configured by setting the dials in a specific pattern. Please refer to the screenshot on the left for the correct solution.
5
SheolPuzzle5
Deactivate the stone wall by shooting or punching to reveal a set of gems. Use the weapon in front of you to shoot all of them while making adjustments through the arrows.
6
SheolPuzzle6
Supposing the levers were numbered 1 to 7, from left to right, pull 2, 3, 7 and 5; then press the button and the gun will shoot the mirror. Press the button again. Now pull 2, 6, 5. Press the button twice.[11]
7
SheolPuzzle7-2
You need to press the upper right and the bottom left hand in order to gain access to the plinth inside the maze and press the hand symbol which it bears.
8
SheolPuzzle8
Jump over the illuminated platforms in a zig-zag manner as stepping on them will trigger a series of fireballs. Find the first of 4 moving mirrors which is not protected by a magical barrier. Smashing it will deactivate the shield of another mirror. Lastly, enter the room opposite the entrance and jump on the stone block.

Island of ThreadsEdit

IslandOfThreadsCastleWallsIslandOfThreadsDomeIslandOfThreadsElohimTowerIslandOfThreads

The Island of Threads is the area we come to after having completed the trials in the octagonal puzzle room and subsequently defeated PYRWLK7 Pyrichiel. It guards the well of the Soulstone.[12] The Parchment-UnkownPlace2 Sketch we picked up inside Florentine's Observatory appears to depict the Island of Threads.

As soon as we pass through the DIGATE1.gate in sheol dimension gate, we're attacked by two Khulkith Khulkith. Somebody kindly left a VialBlue Violet Potion for us by the green arch, the most potent vial in the game. Nota bene that, in case we forgot to pick up the PerditionShield Perdition Shield after the fight with Vine, two malevolent SLFIRDOD fire creatures will be roaming around these grounds. Cautiously traversing the makeshift tree stem bridge in front of us, we now have some time to take a closer look at the remains of fortification that must have belonged to a castle of sorts at some point. Off in the distance, we spot several floating isles featuring even more castellation.

Elohim TowerEdit

Adam: This tower. Full of old memories. They seem oddly familiar.

Stepping through the broken portcullis, we wonder what old battles could have been fought here. Keeping left we find two valuable VialRed Red Potions stashed next to the overgrown stone walls. Walking around the edge of a pool of shallow water that's running off the cliff on one side, we decide to explore the imposing white tower (also referred to as Elohim Tower[13]) in the far distance. Entering, we slowly stride around the perimeter until we reach an open spot with a balustrade that grants us a magnificent sky vista. If this were a different game, I'm sure we would find plenty of "Praise the Sun!" and "Gorgeous view ahead!" messages placed on the floor.
Walking up the stairs, we eventually come into a room that seems oddly familiar to us, the key feature being a tree with three shimmering lights in its crown. We've already seen an image of this place in the basement of the Vicarage. The floor is entirely entrenched with the tree's roots, and next to the stem we find another VialBlue Violet Potion.

Green DomeEdit

Leaving the tower, our attention is now drawn to the central green dome that we recognize from our journey to the Gnarl's Domain. The dome is encircled by a formation of seven rocks which appear to be melted off (cf. the game's Intro Sequence, in which we bear witness to the creation of this place). Interestingly, the painting of PaintingFlorentineTemplar Florentine dressed as a Knight Templar which can be seen inside the Mansion's Armoury shows in the background a green hemisphere which is surrounded by several (still intact) slabs of rock.

Approaching the dome, we will be once again impeded by Belial:
Eye of the Beast Belial - Confrontation

Alternatively, in case we're not in possession of the PowerofDominion Power of Dominion scroll, we will be subject to an illusion induced by Belial where Adam finds an unconscious Rebecca sedated with chloroform and chained to a rock (possibly a reference to Andromeda; for more information, see this section in Rebecca's article):
Eye of the Beast Rebecca - Captive

If we choose not to save her, Eye of the Beast Rebecca - Fate, Belial will reveal himself and attack us:
Eye of the Beast Belial - Confrontation

On the other hand, if we do have compassion with Rebecca, Adam will unchain her, carelessly placing Eternity on the ground which serves Belial as an opportunity to take both the sword and the Shrive from him. Adam, then, has to defeat Belial again in order to reobtain these objects:
Eye of the Beast Rebecca - Power of Dominion

Alternate Ending: If Adam storms directly towards Belial instead of hiding behind the rock as they fight against each other, another cutscene will be triggered in which Belial impales Adam with the sword Eternity and takes the Shrive from his coat pocket, disdainfully stating that "There is no armour against fate; Death lays his hands even on kings," a loose quotation from British dramatist James Shirley's The Contention of Ajax and Ulysses for the Armour of Achilles. The cutscene ends with both of them wrestling and falling into the abyss:
Eye of the Beast Belial - Into the Abyss

After defeating Belial and subsequently using Eternity on the green dome, we initiate Chapter XVIII Threads and materialise below the floating well.

Below the Island of ThreadsEdit

Stepping off the one-way Teleporter, we now find ourselves in a cavernous region. There are two valuable VialRed Red Potions and a nasty Khulkith Khulkith attacking us through the window. Proceeding through the dark cave passages, we eventually reach a brighter section in which we're confronted with innumerable flying creatures, Slander Slanderers and Khulkith. Hurrying along the wooden walkways by the cliff-side, we enter another cavernous section in which we'll be impeded by 3 NEPHDMG Nephilim and find another VialRed Red Potion. Fumbling through the dark, our progression being additionally complicated by 3 Khulkith, we eventually reach a teleporter, taking us to the notorious Chamber of the Soulstone.

Chamber of the SoulstoneEdit

With the initiation of Chapter XIX The Gathering, we eventually find ourselves inside the ominously viridescent grounds of the Chamber of the Soulstone, along with Florentine, Gaul and Hawk.

Theological BackgroundEdit

Old TestamentEdit

In the Tanakh, Sheol is a term for the realm of the dead. Additionally, it has been synonymised as the "underworld"[14][15], the "grave"[16], the "land of darkness and the deepest shadow"[17] or "pit"[18][19].
The Greek translation of the Old Testament, the Septuagint (LXX), uses the term 'Hades'. Occasionally, Sheol is also personified as having an insatiable appetite[20][21][22] and swallowing people alive as they descend to their death[23], whereas other passages assign certain parts of the human body to Sheol, such as the mouth[24], the belly[25], or the hand[26][27].

New TestamentEdit

The New Testament follows the Septuagint in translating sheol as hades[28][29][30].

EtymologyEdit

The origin of the term 'sheol' is obscure. "[It] was for some time regarded as an Assyro-Babylonian loan-word, "Shu'alu," having the assumed meaning "the place whither the dead are cited or bidden," or "the place where the dead are ingathered." [German theologian Franz] Delitzsch, who in his earlier works advanced this view, has now abandoned it; at least in his dictionary the word is not given. The non-existence of "Shu'alu" has been all along maintained by Jensen[31], and recently again by Zimmern[32] even against [Marcus] Jastrow's explanation[33] that "sha'al" = "to consult an oracle," or "to cite the dead" for this purpose, whence the name of the place where the dead are. The connection between the Hebrew "Sheol" and the Assyro - Babylonian "shillan" (west), which Jensen proposed instead[34][35], does not appear to be acceptable. Zimmern (l.c.) suggests "shilu" (= "a sort of chamber") as the proper Assyrian source of the Hebrew word. On the other hand, it is certain that most of the ideas covered by the Hebrew "Sheol" are expressed also in the Assyro-Babylonian descriptions of the state of the dead, found in the myths concerning Ishtar's descent into Hades, concerning Nergal and Ereshkigal[36] and in the Gilgamesh epic (tablets ii. and xii.; comp. also Craig, "Religious Texts," i. 79; King, Magic," No. 53).

This realm of the dead is in the earth ("erẓitu" = ; comp. Job, x. 21, 22), the gateway being in the west. It is the "land without return." It is a dark place filled with dust; but it contains a palace for the divine ruler of this shadow-realm (comp. Job xviii. 13, 14). Seven gates guard successively the approach to this land, at the first of which is a watchman. A stream of water flows through Sheol (comp. Enoch, xvii. 6, xxii. 9; Luke xvi. 24; Ps. xviii. 5; II Sam. xxii. 5)."[37]

Gallery Edit

ReferencesEdit

  1. Deuteronomy 32:22
  2. Psalms 9:17
  3. Psalms 18:5
  4. Isaiah 14:9
  5. Amos 9:2
  6. Adam: We've heard of Sheol, it sounds like a dangerous place.
    Hawk: Some call it Hell, or 'Gehenna', the seven terrible layers of fire and darkness. Sheol is only the topmost layer of Hell, the lowest being the Pit. It is within the place you call Sheol that the Soulstone lies.

  7. Adam: This Sheol place. Know anything about it Miss Trevisard?
    Rebecca: In the Old Testament, Sheol is the Hebrew version of the Greek Hades.... Hell, or part of it anyway. It's commonly regarded as a place where the dead exist as Shades or as a place of torment for the wicked. You should feel right at home.
    Adam: Sounds like Hell all right. Raphael said it's possible to get there through the Tower. Hell... this is crazy.

  8. A line which should be familiar to us, being the opening epigraph when we start the game.
  9. Official Interplay Walkthrough: "Level One - Dominion: Vine, the major demon and Master of Dominion rules this level. To successfully traverse this level you must collect 'brains' and place them in the brain machine. This lowers the platforms to allow exit. Defeat Vine and the Power of Dominion is granted. This shields Adam from Illusions."
  10. 10.0 10.1 Official Interplay Walkthrough: "Level Three - Salvation: Pyrichiel, major demon and Master of Fire rules this level. This level is traversed by successfully turning a series of wheels until a central circle of fire is absolved and the Gate back is revealed. At this point the Power of Salvation is granted. This shields Adam from Fire."
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Walkthrough by Lu Richardson
  12. Official Interplay Walkthrough: "Adam finally reaches the Island of Threads, the place that guards the well of the Soulstone."
  13. Texture: "ELTOW2.extl wall of elohim tower.bmp" & "ELOHIM2.floor of etower.bmp"
  14. Job 26:6
  15. Isaiah 14:15
  16. Job 7:9
  17. Job 10:21
  18. Numbers 16:30,33
  19. Job 17:16
  20. Habakkuk 2:5
  21. Isaiah 5:14
  22. Proverbs 30:15-16
  23. Proverbs 1:12
  24. Psalms 141:7
  25. Jonah 2:2
  26. Psalms 49:15
  27. Psalms 89:48
  28. Acts 2:27
  29. Acts 2:31
  30. Revelation 1:18
  31. Jensen, Peter. Die Kosmologie der Babylonier. 223.
  32. Schrader, Eberhard. Die Keilinschriften und das Alte Testament. Edited by Hugo Winckler and Heinrick Zimmern. Berlin: Reuther & Reichard. 636, note 4.
  33. Jastrow, Marcus. In: The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, Volume 14. 165-170.
  34. Jensen, Peter. In: Zeitschrift für Assyriologie, Volume 5. 131.
  35. Jensen, Peter. In: Zeitschrift für Assyriologie, Volume 15. 243
  36. Schrader, Eberhard. Keilinschriftliche Bibliothek, volume 6, part 1. Edited by Peter Jensen. 74-79.
  37. http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?letter=S&artid=614#2041

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