According to an ancient popular legend, the Bridge of St. James, the "Pole Serat" in the Persian tradition, is very thin and divides the world of the living from that of the dead. It is the Milky Way and St. James, fisherman at Bethsaida on Lake Tiberias, is his guide and protector. The bridge is as thin as a hair, sharp like a knife blade and is rises above a frightening abyss.
The souls of the dead pass over the bridge of St. James to arrive in the afterlife: if the dead person has committed a few sins the soul will be agile and will cross the bridge without difficulty, if he has committed many it is heavy and clumsy and is likely to fall. But souls can also have the protection of the Archangel Michael as a psychopomp, whose God entrusts the souls of the righteous to protect them from the demons along the path that leads to Heaven. Michael, the miracle worker, is the numen of shepherds, the protector of border spaces, of the limes, which weighs the souls of the dead with its weight scale.