Paradise

In religion, paradise is a place of exceptional happiness and delight. Paradisiacal notions are often laden with pastoral imagery, and may be cosmogonical or eschatological or both, often compared to the miseries of human civilization: in paradise there is only peace, prosperity, and happiness. Paradise is a place of contentment, a land of luxury and fulfillment.

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Seyed Ali Shobayri, Seyed Ali Shobayri is of mixed Iranian and Scottish descent who found the path of the Ahlul Bayt (a) by his own research. He holds a BA in Islamic Studies from Middlesex University through the... Answered 1 month ago

Bismillah, 

Asalamu Alaykom, 

As long as you fulfill all of your obligatory duties then you should be fine and will hopefully attain jannah inshallah. It is highly recommended to seek as much knowledge as possible about religion as this can give you more rewards and a higher rank in jannah. 

May Allah grant you success  

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 1 month ago

The grave of the sincere obedient believer is a garden from Paradise as the Hadeeth says. In Sura Al-Waqi'ah we read how the great pleasant result of sincere faith and obedience starts immediately on the time of death. The happiness of the sincere believers starts on leaving this world and their Barzakh is the beginning of the happiness of Paradise.

Wassalam.

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Amina Inloes, Amina Inloes is originally from the US and has a PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Exeter on Shi'a hadith. She is the program leader for the MA Islamic Studies program at the... Answered 3 months ago

No. There is no purpose to fasting without a physical body, anyway.

However there are different forms of worship associated with greater awareness of Allah and greater nearness to Allah which is part of being in jannah.

 

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Amina Inloes, Amina Inloes is originally from the US and has a PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Exeter on Shi'a hadith. She is the program leader for the MA Islamic Studies program at the... Answered 3 months ago

Allah says in the Quran that no one will bear the burden of another. We are all responsible for our deeds.

It is not healthy to go through life with a sense of pre-destination that one will go to hell, because that can easily become a self-fulfilling prophecy. 

Sometimes some people are irresponsible when they talk about illegitimate children and either say things without thinking, or else they don't critically examine the texts they are talking about and quote them without thinking or comparing or examining them closely. It perhaps doesn't occur to them that some of the people sitting there listening are not of legitimate birth. There should be more responsibility in discussing these things so that people do not go around worrying they will go to hell because of what their forebears did. 

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Amina Inloes, Amina Inloes is originally from the US and has a PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Exeter on Shi'a hadith. She is the program leader for the MA Islamic Studies program at the... Answer updated 3 months ago

There isn't full agreement on whether the soul has a gender, although a common view is that the soul does not have a gender. However one can deduce from Qur'an and hadith that we will appear in the afterlife similar to how we appear in this world including gender. It is said that the soul is affixed to a sort of body in the afterlife (less "heavy" than the physical body but still a sort of body) and so perhaps this is why it will appear gendered. 

[Edit: Hereby is demonstration that there is no agreement on the matter! In tafsir of 4:1, Allamah Tabataba'i expresses the view that the Qur'anic reference to creating the "nafs" of a person and its mate is the compound of worldly body and soul, not the soul in and of itself or what persists after the worldly life.

However, it should be said that there have been multiple trends of thought in the Islamic world regarding the nature of the soul, and some scholars accept some views - like Molla Sadra's - whereas others do not. As for non-Islamic sources, while it is true that extra-Islamic philosophical ideas were introduced to the Islamic world early on and became part of Islamic thought, just because something is extra-Islamic does not automatically mean it is wrong. For instance, pre-Islamic sources also say that 2+2=4, and we do not disagree with that. What can be said is that non-Islamic sources cannot be taken as proof of matters known through revelation, although one could consider the logic presented in them.

In any case, this may not be what the question is actually intending to ask, because it seems that the question is aimed at asking whether we will appear gendered in the barzakh and heaven/hell. From the Qur'an and hadith, it seems as if we will appear recognizably gendered, regardless of whether or not that is an inherent nature of the soul. In any case, we will all find out.

In contrast, some people ask whether the soul is essentially gendered because they have an interest in questions such as the position of women and men spiritually in Islamic thought.

An interesting read on the spiritual aspects of gender in the Islamic, including Shi'i, tradition is _The Tao of Islam_.]

Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 4 months ago

Non Islamic sources claim that souls have no gender but Quran and authentic Hadeeths are clear that human soul is linked with human body, and as every human being has a gender either male of female, so, the souls has the same gender of the human being . Allah (SWT) says in Quran : (O mankind, We have Created you from a male and a female and made you in people and tribes, that you may know each other. Verily, the most honorable of you with Allah is most pious (Sura 49, Verse 13).

Wassalam.

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 4 months ago

A Muslim child who dies in a young age i.e. childhood before puberty
(Buloogh) will not be accountable for any of the obligatory worships and duties  because obligatories start only after Buloogh. Allah SWT will grant all the
Muslim children the Paradise and also grant them to intercede
(Shafa’at) for their parents. The Hadeeth says : When Muslim children
die, they will be looked after near the Paradise by Lady Sarah, the
wife of Prophet Ibrahim (AS) and when the Angels tell them to enter
Paradise, they will say: We wait for our parents to enter with us.

Children of non Muslim parents will not be punished in the Day of Judgment but will be given full chance  to know the true faith and chose.

Wassalaam.

Amina Inloes, Amina Inloes is originally from the US and has a PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Exeter on Shi'a hadith. She is the program leader for the MA Islamic Studies program at the... Answer updated 4 months ago

It doesn't matter whether they are Muslim or not Muslim.

All children, regardless of their families' religions or what religion they identify as, are closer to the pure/uncorrupted/sinless nature known as the fitrah that recognizes and acknowledges the truth, the unseen, and good and evil. (Perhaps this is why children are often quite wise!)

At the same time, all children are still developing the psychological capabilities that are necessary to make solid moral judgments and act on them (for instance, empathy, the ability to put the good of the group above the good of the individual, self-restraint, an understanding of cause and effect, an understanding of the permanency of death, etc). 

This is not to say that children cannot make good and bad ethical decisions, or that children do not have authentic religious experiences and beliefs or even conversions. All of that happens; it depends on the child and the age. However, they are not held responsible in the same way that mature people are.

So, children go to barzakh (the intermediary realm after death before the final judgment) and then to paradise. It is said that they skip some things that they are not mature enough for, such as some of the questioning. 

The experience of children in the afterlife will likely be different from that of mature adults since part of our job in this life is to learn more about spiritual and other realities. So, they may have some catching up to do, or maybe their experience will just be different, just as different adults will also have different experiences. 

On the other hand, we should not underestimate children's souls (in the same way that people often underestimate children and confine them to things that are "childish"). The soul is a noble and honourable creation of Allah and this is the same for children or adults. 

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 4 months ago

Only being poor does no mean that the person is entitled to Paradise with out accountability. True faith and good deeds are compulsory to enter Paradise. Accountability is on every person as far as he has done, but the financial matters of the rich is more difficult than the poor who did not have much.

Poor believers who live with patience and piousness will get great reward in the Paradise.

Wassalam. 

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answer updated 5 months ago

Real Muslim will not remain in Hellfire for ever. The Hadeeth says (The Paradise is for the believers in Tawheed ) (الجنة للموحدين)

Remaining in Hellfire for ever is only for the Kuffaar  (disbelievers who are the enemies of Allah (SWT)).

Kharijites and Mu'tazilah say that Muslim who committed major sins will remain in Hellfire forever like the Kuffaar.

Shaikh al-Mufeed said in Awaa'il al-Maqaalaat P.14: The Imami (Shia) scholars are unanimous that remaining in Hellfire for ever is for the Kuffaar only and not for the major sinners from those who believe in Allah.

Shaikh al-Sadouq said in Sharh Aqaed al-Sadouq P55: The Hellfire is the place of those who did not believe in Allah and some of the believers in Allah who committed major sins but they will not remain in it. No one will remain in Hellfire for ever but the non believers.

The names which you mentioned can be from those who claimed being Muslims but did not really believe, just like the Munafiqeen (hypocrates).

Wassalam.

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 5 months ago

Children who die will be enjoying the Mercy of Allah near the gates of Paradise, when angles tell them to enter the Paradise, they will say: We are waiting for our parents. This is in authentic Hadeeth.

Mentally ill persons and all ill persons who die will not be ill in the Paradise.

Wassalam.

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 6 months ago

Ameerul Mo'mineen Ali (AS) was asked by one of his sincere followers (Hammaam) about the characteristics of the Pious believers. He replied him in a great sermon mentioned in Nahjul Balaghah.

The Characteristics of Pious persons صفة المتقين

“They possess pre-eminence and excellence because they always speak truthfully, rightly and to the point, their way of living is based upon moderation, and their mode of dealing with other men is founded on their good will, fellow feeling and courtesy towards them. They deny themselves the things prohibited by God. They concentrate their minds upon knowledge of things which will bring them eternal bliss.

They bear hardships and sufferings as happily as they enjoy comforts and pleasures. If God had not fixed the span of life for each one of them, their souls in desire of attaining His Heaven and out of fear of falling into His displeasure, would not have stayed in their bodies for long.”

“They have visualized mentally the glory of God in such a way that beyond him nothing in this world alarms, frightens or awes them. Everything other than His might appears to them as insignificant and humble. They believe in the Heaven and its blessings like a person who has been there and has actually seen everything of the Heaven with his own eyes.

Similarly, their faith in the Hell and its torments is as strong as that of a person who had passed through its sufferings. They feel that the tortures of the Hell are around them and very near to them.”

“The ways of worldly people make them sorry. They harm nobody. They do not indulge in excessive eating and pleasure seeking. Their wants are limited. Their wishes are few. They have accepted patiently sufferings and adversities in this mortal and transitory life for the sake of eternal bliss which by the grace of God proved for them a very profitable transaction.

The vicious world desired their fellowship but they turned their faces away from it. It wanted to snare them, but they willingly accepted every trouble and discomfort to free themselves from its clutches.”

“Their nights they spend in carefully studying the Qur’an, because, of their weaknesses and short-comings, and try to find ways from this Holy book for improvements of their minds. In the study of the Qur’an when they came across a passage describing the Heaven they feel highly attracted towards it and develop such a keen desire to reach it; that the Heaven with all its blessings is visualized by their minds, while a passage about the Hell frightens them and makes them feel as if they are seeing and hearing the raging fire and the groans and lamentations of those who are suffering the tortures of the Hell.”

“Nights they spend in praying before the Lord and requesting and beseeching Him to deliver them from the Hell. Days find them occupied with such works that clearly indicate their wisdom, depth of knowledge, virtuousness, and piety. Constant fasting, simple diet: avoidance of every aspect of luxury and regular hard work make them look lean and haggard, but they possess very sound and robust health.

When people hear them discussing various problems of life they often take them to be whimsical fanatic or even half-witted. But it is not so, they are not satisfied with the quality and quantity of the work done by them in the cause of religion and humanity .The more they work the less they feel satisfied. Having set up a very high standard of efficiency for their work they fell nervous that indolence may not make it impossible for them to attain those heights.”

“If anyone of them is praised for piety, virtuousness and the good deeds done by him, he does not like to be so complimented; he is afraid that such praise may not allure him towards vanity, self flattery, and self glorification. He says, I know my mind and my work more than others, and God knows much more than me.

O Lord! Please do not hold me responsible for what they have said about me. You know very well that I did not instigate them for such praises. Please Lord! Grant me excellence far greater than what they complimented me for. And Lord! Please forgive those of my sins short-comings which they do not know.”

“You will find every pious person possessing the following attributes. He is resolute though tender-hearted and kind. He is unwavering in his convictions and beliefs. He is thirsty for knowledge. He forgives those who harmed him, fully knowing that they have wronged him. Even when owning wealth his ways of life are based upon moderation. His prayers are models of humility and submissiveness to God. Even when starving he will maintain his self-respect. He will bear sufferings patiently.”

“He will resort only to honest means of living. Leading others towards truth and justice, will give him pleasure. He disdains avarice and greed. Though he does good deeds all the time, yet he feels nervous of his short-comings. Every night, he thanks God for having passed one more day under His Grace and Mercy.

Every morning finds him starting the day with the prayers of the Lord. Of nights he is cautious that he may not carelessly waste those hours in comfort and ease. He starts his days happy with the thought the Lord has given him another day to do his duty.”

“If his mind wishes for something unholy and impious he refuses to obey its dictates. He desires to achieve eternal bliss. Worldly pleasures do not interest him. His wisdom is mixed with patience. His deeds reciprocate his words (he does what he says). Inordinate desires do not trouble him. He has few defects in him. He is courteous to others.

He possesses a contended mind. He eats little, he does not harm anybody. He is easy to be pleased. He is strong in his faith. His passions are dead. His temper is controlled.”

“People expect good out of him and consider themselves immune from his harm. Even if he is found among godless people his name will be written in the list of Godly persons. If he is in company of those who always remember God, naturally his name will not be included amongst those who forget Him. He forgives those who harm him. He helps those who have forsaken him and have refused to help him.

He is kind to those who have been cruel to him. He does good to those who do evil to him. He never indulges in loose talks. He has no vice in him, and his good qualities are outstanding, noticeable, and prominent, when facing dangers and disasters he is calm and undisturbed. In sufferings and calamities he is patient and hopeful. In prosperity he is thankful to God. He would not harm his worst enemy. He will never commit a sin even for the sake of his best friend.”

“Before anybody has to bear testimony to his fault he accepts and owns it. He never misappropriates anything entrusted to him. He never forgets what he has been told. He does not slander anybody. He does not harm his neighbors.

When misfortunes befall any person he does not blame him, neither is he happy at the losses of others. He neither goes astray from the right path nor follows a wrong one. His silence does not indicate,. his moroseness nor his laughters are loud and boisterous.

He bears persecution patiently and God punishes his oppressor. He is hard to himself and very lenient to others. He bears hardships in this life to attain eternal comfort and peace. He never wrongs a fellow being. If he avoids anybody it is to retain his piety and uprightness. If he forms contract with anybody it is on account of his kindness and clemency.

He does not avoid anybody because of his pride and vanity, and he does not mix with others with ulterior motives of hypocrisy, pretense, and vile.”1

“The narrator says that Hammam was hearing the sermon very attentively when Imam reached the above passage, Hammam fainted and died it during the faint. Seeing this Imam said: “By God, I was hesitating to all this to Hammam because of this very reason. Effective advises on minds ready to receive them often bring almost similar result”.

  • 1. Nahjul Balagha, sermon 193.

Wassalam.