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Steinbeck Hears Sermon on Hell

John Steinbeck, in Travels with Charley: In Search of America, writes his thoughts on a sermon he heard while attending a church in New England:

It had been long since I had heard such a good approach. It is our practice now, at least in the large cities, to find from our psychiatric priesthood that our sins aren't really sins at all but accidents that are set in motion by forces beyond our control. There was no nonsense in this church.
The minister... reassured us that we were a pretty sorry lot. And he was right.
Having softened us up, he went into a glorious sermon, a fire-and-brimstone sermon... He spoke of hell as an expert, not the mush-mush hell of these soft days, but a well-stoked, white-hot hell served by technicians of the first order.

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