Ask A Question About Islam And Muslims
There is a famous narration attributed to the Prophet (SAWW) where he said that the Ummah will be divided into seventy-three sects, one of which will be in Paradise and seventy-two will be in the Fire. What is the authenticity of this narration?
There are many narrations in Sunni and Shia books regarding the 73 sects, but most of the narrations have additions which are not authentic especially what is in some Sunni books that the saved sect will be those who follow me and my companions ما أنا عليه وأصحابي. Leading Sunni Ulama stated that this narration is fabricated.
Our Shia Ulama narrated many narrations about the 73 sects as find in Bisharat Al-Mustafa narrated from Ameerul Mo'mineen (AS) which states that saved sect will be those who follow the real successor of the Prophet (SAWA).
This narration does not mean that all Muslim sects will be in hellfire except one sect, but means that there will be right sect despite of the different sects. The followers of the right sect will be saved because there have obeyed the orders of Allah (SWT) and the Prophet (SAWA).
Is it permissible to ask Allah to test use only with good in this world and at the same time ask for the highest ranks in paradise?
Yes it is permissible and very good.
I have heard that when a child dies they directly go to Jannah. If true, how is it fair as that is much easier than the hardships and tests we have to face in our life before we can enter paradise?
The hardships and tests we face - God willing - refine us not only as human beings but increase our spiritual understanding and capacity to behold the divine. This is one reason why human being agreed to accept the responsibility of free will - with it comes a risk (hellfire) but also great potential.
Ideally the main goal of the material existence (as I understand it) is for human beings to deepen their inherent spiritual understanding as much as possible. A child and an adult may both go to jannah; however, depending on their experiences (as not everyone grows throughout a long lifespan), they may end up with a different inherent capacity to perceive the divine there. (One might equate that with "higher in jennah")
Is it true that men will receive 72 Hoors in paradise and, if so, what reward will women receive? How can we understand this idea in a way that is not misogynistic?
My understanding is that the emphasis on males having hur al-ayns is because God is shy and considers that women might also be more shy about these things. However, men are often not shy in broadcasting that they want many females and in fact sometimes consider it a manly thing to say, so God speaks of this from the male perspective.
The Qur'an is also discreet in discussing other delicate matters such as using the washroom and spousal relations, even though this discretion is not usually reflected in translation.
Maybe also some of the men in that time period were a little difficult and they needed some extra encouragement.
The Hereafter does not have the same considerations of this world, and God knows best how people will feel about these things in the Hereafter.
In any case, the Quran (for instance in Surah Ya Sin) does in general speak of having the enjoyment of companionship in Paradise in a general sense (not limited to men).