Sunday, February 28, 2016

Concepts of Hell and Paradise

TM wrote: 1st of all they should explain, why should we 21st Century Space Age Adults believe in 7th Century illiterate ignorant Bedouin's Fairy Tale of Hell and Paradise in Sky, when our Telescopes find none of them in Sky?
Some Moslims claim, "Oh Hell and Paradise are just states of Mind, not something Physically existent" but when I ask, "If they are Non Physical, why Allah is talking about Physical Pain then?", they never come back to answer my question.  

Reply: Believers in the revelations have faith that whatever is written in the scriptures is true. We Muslims take the entire Quran on faith, acknowledging our acute lack of knowledge, and pray that God increases us in knowledge and guidance, and turns to us in forgiveness and mercy. 
I have tried to understand some of the verses which convey to us some information of the Hereafter. I'm sharing them here in case they help answer some questions. Please find below the abstracts and links to the full text:  

Bliss & Realm Magnificent 
Many verses throughout the Qur’an describe various aspects of the Garden promised to those who believe and do good deeds. Surah 76 of the Qur’an begins with evolutionary insignificance (76:1), origin and purpose of the human (76:2), divine guidance (76:3), punishment for rejection (76:4), and then goes on to describe some very specific features of the promised reward, which represent the best of the best of those found on Earth. Then, verse 22 states that: 

76:22 إِنَّ هَـٰذَا كَانَ لَكُمْ جَزَاءً وَكَانَ سَعْيُكُم مَّشْكُورًا
[Al-Qur’an 76:22, translator: Sahih International] [And it will be said], "Indeed, this is for you a reward, and your effort has been appreciated.”

Fuel of Hell: Humans and Stones 
The Quran verse 2:24, describes humans and stones as fuel of The Fire prepared for the disbelievers. The Quran also mentions that though those in The Fire will wish death or escape, yet they will have no choice but to endure the punishment continuously. In this Concept, occurrences in nature of stones and creatures under high temperature and pressure, and other unusual circumstances, has been explored, as an attempt to imagine the possibility of humans enduring The Fire while being a renewable fuel source.   

Setting of the Stars 
Qur’an chapter 56 links the Inevitable Event to the ‘setting’ of the stars [end stage of stellar evolution?] with the statement that, if we understood, we would realise it is a great oath! Qur’an verses 17:49-51 state that even if humans became stones or iron, or anything harder that humans can imagine, yet they will be resurrected. 
Current theory of Stellar Evolution postulates that the end stage of a massive star’s life is when silicon is burnt into iron. Beyond this, according to the theory, no further burning is possible.

Alternate Biochemistry 
In this Concept, the plausibility of alternate biochemistry is explored on the basis of known exotic creatures. The Quran 56:60-62 speaks of resurrection in an unknown form of creation, while drawing attention to the fact that we already know the first form of creation. 
Scientists continue to be amazed and baffled by the life forms that are being discovered in the most extreme and hostile of environments — it seems that the new challenge is to be able to not find life somewhere. Life seems to exist in all possible conditions. As the saying goes: life finds a way!  

Orientation: Right or Left 
Regarding the Day of Judgement and the Hereafter, the Quran provides vivid details in terms of left and right orientations. There are many teachings attributed to Prophet Mohammad (s.a.w. (may Allah’s blessings be upon him)) regarding the preferred usage of right or left hand  or foot. 
Preferences for right and left orientation are also found in nature. We can attempt to contemplate upon the guidance with concepts of Chirality found across all sciences.
Noor is another term used in connection with the right-oriented. Luminescence, and particularly bioluminescence found in several organisms helps comprehend this concept. 
Though we may still not comprehend it fully, let alone draw any conclusions, however it opens our minds to possibilities beyond the ordinary, and helps us to appreciate the wisdom of the teachings, and more readily accept guidance on faith. 

And Allah knows best! 

MSA wrote: Your blog does not answer following questions:
-if Iblees is immortal, and if he would face Allah on the Day of Judgment without being resurrected?
-What punishment would he be subjected to for his continuous, and uninterrupted mischiefs with human beings?
-Does Ibless have influence over animals and Jinns as well?

The Quran and prior scriptures may or may not have addressed the specific points raised below. There are some related verses which give some idea, such as: 

Iblees accepting that his promise was false:   

وَقَالَ الشَّيْطَانُ لَمَّا قُضِيَ الْأَمْرُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ وَعَدَكُمْ وَعْدَ الْحَقِّ وَوَعَدتُّكُمْ فَأَخْلَفْتُكُمْ وَمَا كَانَ لِيَ عَلَيْكُم مِّن سُلْطَانٍ إِلَّا أَن دَعَوْتُكُمْ فَاسْتَجَبْتُمْ لِي فَلَا تَلُومُونِي وَلُومُوا أَنفُسَكُم مَّا أَنَا بِمُصْرِخِكُمْ وَمَا أَنتُم بِمُصْرِخِيَّ إِنِّي كَفَرْتُ بِمَا أَشْرَكْتُمُونِ مِن قَبْلُ إِنَّ الظَّالِمِينَ لَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ
And will say the Shaitaan, when has been decided the matter, "Indeed, Allah promised you a promise (of) truth. And I promised you, but I betrayed you. But not I had over you any authority except that I invited you, and you responded to me. So (do) not blame me, but blame yourselves. Not (can) I (be) your helper and not you (can) (be) my helper. Indeed, I deny [of what] your association of me (with Allah) before. Indeed, the wrongdoers, for them (is) a punishment painful." 

Jinns and Humans being led to Hell:

فَمَنْ أَظْلَمُ مِمَّنِ افْتَرَىٰ عَلَى اللَّهِ كَذِبًا أَوْ كَذَّبَ بِآيَاتِهِ أُولَٰئِكَ يَنَالُهُمْ نَصِيبُهُم مِّنَ الْكِتَابِ حَتَّىٰ إِذَا جَاءَتْهُمْ رُسُلُنَا يَتَوَفَّوْنَهُمْ قَالُوا أَيْنَ مَا كُنتُمْ تَدْعُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ قَالُوا ضَلُّوا عَنَّا وَشَهِدُوا عَلَىٰ أَنفُسِهِمْ أَنَّهُمْ كَانُوا كَافِرِينَ
قَالَ ادْخُلُوا فِي أُمَمٍ قَدْ خَلَتْ مِن قَبْلِكُم مِّنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنسِ فِي النَّارِ كُلَّمَا دَخَلَتْ أُمَّةٌ لَّعَنَتْ أُخْتَهَا حَتَّىٰ إِذَا ادَّارَكُوا فِيهَا جَمِيعًا قَالَتْ أُخْرَاهُمْ لِأُولَاهُمْ رَبَّنَا هَٰؤُلَاءِ أَضَلُّونَا فَآتِهِمْ عَذَابًا ضِعْفًا مِّنَ النَّارِ قَالَ لِكُلٍّ ضِعْفٌ وَلَٰكِن لَّا تَعْلَمُونَ
Then who (is) more unjust than (one) who invented against Allah a lie or denies His Verses? Those - will reach them their portion from the Book, until when comes to them Our messengers (Angels) (to) take them in death they say, "Where are those (whom) you used to invoke besides Allah?" They say, "They strayed from and they (will) testify against themselves that they were disbelievers. He (will) say, "Enter among (the) nations (who) passed away before you of the jinn and the men in the Fire." Every time entered a nation it cursed its sister (nation) until when they had overtaken one another in it all, (will) say (the) last of them about the first of them, "Our Lord, these misled us so give them double punishment of the Fire." He (will) say, "For each (is) a double [and] but not you know." 

The Jinns realising that they had been lied to when they heard the Quran: 

وَأَنَّهُ كَانَ يَقُولُ سَفِيهُنَا عَلَى اللَّهِ شَطَطًا
وَأَنَّا ظَنَنَّا أَن لَّن تَقُولَ الْإِنسُ وَالْجِنُّ عَلَى اللَّهِ كَذِبًا
And that he used to speak - the foolish among us against Allah an excessive transgression. And that we thought that never will say the men and the jinn, against Allah any lie. 

The Sky being guarded by Strongholds made of Teenin Lazib: 
فَاسْتَفْتِهِمْ أَهُمْ أَشَدُّ خَلْقًا أَم مَّنْ خَلَقْنَا إِنَّا خَلَقْنَاهُم مِّن طِينٍ لَّازِبٍ
Then ask them, "Are they a stronger creation or (those) whom We have created?" Indeed, We created them from a clay sticky.

My understanding of Teenin Lazib as mentioned in Al-Quran 37:4-12
What are comets made of? 

فَاسْتَفْتِهِمْ أَهُمْ أَشَدُّ خَلْقًا أَم مَّنْ خَلَقْنَا ۚ إِنَّا خَلَقْنَاهُم مِّن طِينٍ لَّازِبٍ

Then ask them: are they stronger in creation or whom we have created? We created them of ‘teenin lazibin’

Verse 37:11 goes on to question who is more difficult to create, and unequivocally states that We created them from ‘teenin lazibin’. According to Lane’s Lexicon, ’teenin’ is clay or mud, while ‘lazibin’ means fixed, settled, firm or constant, and severe. Could the above verse be describing what comets are made of? 

The findings from the Stardust mission to collect comet samples indicates: ‘Scientists found a wide variety in particle composition and size in the Wild 2 samples. Most of the Wild 2 samples appear to be weakly constructed mixtures of very small grains with a few larger grains. Also, a wide range of high- and low-temperature minerals, from olivine to low- and high-calcium pyroxene compositions, is present in the Wild 2 samples. Such a diversity of high- and low-temperature minerals requires a wide range of formation conditions, probably reflecting different formation locations. Many particles did not form in the cold environment and locations where cometary ices condensed. Instead, they needed high temperatures to form, as well as complex and as yet little understood dynamical processes to end up where comets actually formed. Also, particles from different environments must have undergone some process of accretion to end up as aggregates composed of different minerals.’ [ ] 

A new picture of Comets is emerging: The Electric Comet 

My interpretation of the verse: Indeed your Deity is One. The Lord of the Heavens and Earth and all that is between them, and Lord of all origins; We have adorned the Heaven of the world with adornment of the hard glistening rocky celestial bodies; and guarding against every rebellious devil; they cannot listen to the Exalted Assembly for they are pelted from every side; outcast, and theirs is a perpetual torment; except such as who snatches by stealth, is pursued by a piercing flame; Then ask them: are they stronger in creation or whom we have created? We created them of ‘teenin lazibin’. But, you wonder and they make fun. 

May Allah guide us to a better and clearer understanding of His Message. Amen. 

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