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Islam for non-Muslims
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Message Icon Topic: Eternal Torture - Never-Ending Torment(Topic Closed Topic Closed) Post Reply Post New Topic
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Mateeri-al-ist
 
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bullet Topic: Eternal Torture - Never-Ending Torment
    Posted: 09 August 2007 at 10:04am

According to Islam, is there a kind of 'hell' where people will find themselves suffering eternally? Such a notion is appalling and morally repugnant to me.

If there is a 'hell' in Islamic understanding, is it morally acceptable to you for a god to allow people to face eternal (never ever ending) torture? Have you no moral outrage at this?

Also, what kind of transgression is deserving of eternal torture?

Thanks.

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Mateeri-al-ist
 
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bullet Posted: 12 August 2007 at 4:50am
Does nobody have a response to this? From my futher reading I gather that there is actually a 'hell' in Islam. No moral outrage at the thought of allowing never-ending torture?
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Israfil
 
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bullet Posted: 12 August 2007 at 9:45am

Materialist,

I hope your inquiry is sincere because I'll give you a sincere answer. In Islamic Eschatology (Study of Apocalypse) hell does exist and yes, you are tormented there. But let me clarify two things for you:

1) The duration of Hell

2) The physicality of Hell

1) The reason Hell is "eternal" is because in the next life (or the world to come) there is no concept of time. Since there is no concept of time the events endure thus becoming an infinite event. Because Hell is all one event all that is done there is endless. In similar fashion, Christians (and some Jewish thought) have a similar idea of Hell where the wicked endure pain for all eternity.

2) Hell is described physically because it is more done on the basis of giving the believers an idea of how dreadful it is. According to Islamic theology, the dead will be raised up both body and soul to God where all will be judged accordingly. Perhaps this explains why we get the sensation of pain and pleasure in the next worlds. According to the Qur'an Heaven is an endless pleasure but in contrast to this so will Hell be an endless torment.

Why is there no moral outrage?

Because as Muslims, we define our morality on the basis of what God has established in Islam. Of course, I may share differing views on certain ethical situations but for the most part, what Muslims believe in morality is on par with the rest of the world. Feed the poor. Help the helpless. Do good works. Do not be excessive in actions. Be good to your mate. Study the world so you may recognize divine providence. Now let me say that of course other Muslims may have differing views on this so do not think my opinion alone is unanimous. But understand here that  for Muslims, when one non-Muslim becomes cognizant of Muhammad (with proper education on Islam by the way) then that individual is in the sense, obligated to either choose or not choose Islam. Of course there is a choice in reality however that choice can also have repricussion.

Some school of thought say that the non-muslim that is properly educated on Muhammad and his message will be questioned by God on the Day of Judgement and will go to hell despite what he or she has done in the real life. The other school of thought holds that God will question the non-muslim on his/her rejection of Muhammad but will consider their good works and may determine that this individual will be in Hell for a short time. Another school of thought holds God may not send that individual to Hell at all. But in essence to all of this what they all equal to is God making the ultimate decision. There is no moral outrage because God ultimately decides all of this. The main essence to Islamic ethics starts with God and ends with us.

As far as what type of transgression we could do that lands us in Hell is Shirk or associating other dieties aside with God (or replacing God with them). Now mind you there are several schools of thought concerning Shirk which has several long interpretations I don't want to get into.

In my personal opinion being away from God the Creator is hell and no amount of fire or torment is greater than that. To me hell is like being trapped in a dark room with no light. In some sense I believe Hell is metaphircal to represent the pain and agony of being away from God not the literal but who knows? I hope I was some help Materialist.

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Hayfa
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bullet Posted: 12 August 2007 at 10:15am

Asalam Alaikym,

Welcome to the Forum.

I cannot say I have any scolarly knowledge. Israfil and others can address certain aspects far better than I.

Also, what kind of transgression is deserving of eternal torture?

Well here might be a few.. is you were to solely lok upon one's actions here on this earth. Here are a few of the genocides that happened in the 20th Cetury (unfortunately there are many). Really what do these people deserve?

Mao Ze-Dong (China, 1958-61 and 1966-69, Tibet 1949-50)

49-78,000,000

Jozef Stalin (USSR, 1934-39)

13,000,000 (the purges)

Adolf Hitler (Germany, 1939-1945)

12,000,000 (concentration camps and civilians WWII)

Hideki Tojo (Japan, 1941-44)

5,000,000 (civilians in WWII)

Pol Pot (Cambodia, 1975-79)

1,700,000

Kim Il Sung (North Korea, 1948-94)

1.6 million (purges and concentration camps)

I was talking to this guy who was an athiest. He did not believe i n God, afterlife, Day of Judgement etc. I said where is the justice then? He said death is justice. I said how can death be "justice" if we all die?

I pray that I go to Jummah (paradise). And it actually brings me hope and peace that people who are muderers, rapists, pedophiles etc. That they will face justice. There are acts that are evil.  

Again, welcome.

Hayfa

 

When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy. Rumi
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Mateeri-al-ist
 
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bullet Posted: 12 August 2007 at 10:46am
Originally posted by Israfil

Why is there no moral outrage?

Because as Muslims, we define our morality on the basis of what God has established in Islam.

What you seem to be saying, in essence, is that you don't find it morally repugnant because the God of your holy texts tells you not to. Is that not a fair characterization of your answer there? Do you have no independent moral sense of your own?

To me, it is a wicked, evil deity that allows for an imperfect human who has made imperfect choices and has imperfect feelings to suffer eternally.

How is eternal torment not 'being excessive in actions'? How is it not barbaric brutality?

Why can't the all-powerful deity zap those 'sinner' souls (like, presumably, my soul) out of existence at death, rather than keep them alive, fully aware that they will suffer eternally?

In my personal opinion being away from God the Creator is hell and no amount of fire or torment is greater than that.

You can't be sincere in thinking hell is no worse than "being away from God the Creator". I think you might want to retract that, seriously.

I am an atheist, which means that you probably consider me "away from God the Creator". I am not in torment or fire.



Edited by Mateeri-al-ist
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Mateeri-al-ist
 
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bullet Posted: 12 August 2007 at 10:48am
Originally posted by Hayfa

Also, what kind of transgression is deserving of eternal torture?

Well here might be a few.. is you were to solely lok upon one's actions here on this earth. Here are a few of the genocides that happened in the 20th Cetury (unfortunately there are many). Really what do these people deserve?

Prison or even the death penalty. Go crazy with some temporary torture if you really want. But are you suggesting that these flawed and deranged psychopaths deserve eternal torture? I feel like I need to explain what 'eternal' means as it horrifies me so much that you can be advocating never ever ever ending torment - for anyone!

No. Murderers, rapists, paedophiles, do not deserve eternal torture. Your view that eternally tormenting these people (as well as non-believers) counts as 'justice' is utterly despicable to me.



Edited by Mateeri-al-ist
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Woodstock
 
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bullet Posted: 12 August 2007 at 11:03am
Not everyone believes hell is eternal. Some compare it to a prison where the sinner would reside till Allah sees fit.

6:128 and 11:106 - 107

I am not a Muslim but I do believe in what the Quran says
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bullet Posted: 12 August 2007 at 11:06am
No I do not feel repulsed , If I killed 12000000 people I would expect to spend eternity in hell
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