"As children tremble and fear everything in the blind darkness, so we in the light sometimes fear what is no more to be feared than the things children in the dark hold in terror". ---- Lucretius, On the nature of things (ca. 60 BC)
Famous psychologist Richard Franklin (cited Sagan, 1997, p. 171) while following a group therapy approach, narrated a very interesting fictitious conversation which is as below.
Suppose I seriously make an assertion to you, "A fire-breathing dragon lives in my garage".
"Show me", you say. I lead you to my garage. You look inside and see a ladder, empty paint cans, an old tricycle but no dragon. "Where is the dragon?" you ask. "Oh, that horrible creature is right here". I reply, waving vaguely and horror in my eyes, "I forgot to mention that it's an invisible dragon and its fire is also invisible". You propose spreading flour on the floor of the garage to capture the dragon's footprints.
"Good idea", I say, "but this dragon floats in the air."
"Then we can use an infrared sensor to detect the invisible fire". You proposed.
"Good idea, but the invisible fire is also heatless." I replied.
"Then why not spray-paint the dragon and make it visible"? You ask.
"Good idea, except this creature is an ghostly dragon and the paint would not stick". I again replied back.
"Well, in that case, let me enter the garage and see if it bites me and if I feel the pain, I will know that something is there". You decided.
"Good idea, but I forgot to tell you, its bite is also painless and even if it eats you, you will not realize that you are eaten and obviously you will look same as before." Another ready explanation comes from me.
The above conversation has no end because it can be extended to any further. No matter how scientifically and logically you try to approach, always I have a 'special' explanation of why it would not work. But by no means I will come out of the idea that the dragon does exist. If you cannot detect, it is your fault, but at any cost the dragon exists.
This dragon story exactly reflects the Muslim's idea of 'Jahannam', the Islamic Hell.
According to Islam, Hell is a real place which Allah has created as a torture chamber for the disbelievers where they will burn forever in fire because they are vilest of creatures (Q: 98.1-8). Hellfire is a woeful punishment... (Q: 33.8), … garments of fire, scalding water will be poured upon heads, melting skins and that which is in the bellies, will be tortured with hooked rods of iron, whenever they try to escape from Hell, they will be dragged, and will be told: 'Taste the torment of the conflagration (Q: 22.19-22), …showered with water as hot as molten brass, which will scald their faces, evil shall be their drink, dismal their resting-place (Q: 18.29), punishment will never be lightened, and they shall be speechless with despair (Q: 43.74-75), … seized by their forelocks and their feet (Q: 55.41), … chains, fetters and a blazing (Fire) (Q: 76.4, Q: 73.12), choking food and a painful punishment (Q: 73.13), roast them in Hell (Q: 69.31), neither shade nor shelter from the flames (Q: 77.31), you and your idols shall be the fuel of Hell (Q: 21.98), food is Zakkum tree and foul pus (Q: 44.43, Q: 69.36).
What a sick and disgusting imagination, and a distortion of reality! The Muslims do not need to be better human being in terms of character or consciousness. All they have to do is to recite the Kalima (incantation) - "there is no God but Allah and Muhammad is his Prophet." In doing so all the Muslim terrorists, murderers, rapists, cheats, thugs, pickpockets and pimps will go to Paradise because they follow Islam. The 'people of the book', Idolaters and atheists are destined to Hell for eternal suffering no matter how pious and God-fearing they may have been. Their good thoughts, good actions or piety are of no value.
The psychologists say that the most effective way of securing dominance is by arousing someone's fear. Lovecraft's (1973, p. 51) famously quoted line, "The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown" is only the beginning of it. Lovecraft continues, "These facts few psychologists will dispute, and their admitted truth must establish for all time the generousness and dignity of the weirdly horrible tales as a literary form."
The second one is favor. Whatever man does, he does out of fear or to gain favor. Hence these two factors severely influence judgment. Muhammad very skillfully exploited man's psychological mechanism, which consists of fear and favor.
Franklin's dragon and Allah's Hellfire; in both cases the fear factor works and offsets the scale of common sense of the people. Though Allah had given horrible description of Hell, but neither Allah nor Muhammad could provide a single evidence of the existence of Hell and its fire. They contradicted each other on many points which mean either Allah or Muhammad; or both of them were damn liars. In spite of this, like the mental patient in the dragon story, Muslims are always one step ahead of their opponents to give a special explanation why Hellfire is real. But the clarifications only raise further questions. If they apply a little logic and common sense, they will be able to realize that Hellfire theory is pure absurd. It relies upon ignorance and thrives in it. The deeper one digs, the more obvious the deception becomes. If Muslims learn to apply a little logic they will see much absurdities in the Hellfire theory same as the dragon story. But regretfully; skepticism and rational enquiry are practically nonexistent in Islam.
Let us expose various contradictions and absurdities bit by bit. First of all, according to Muhammad people are sent to Hell for not accepting Islam. This is unethical. Even if we force-believe this attitude of Allah, then also we are not sure which sect of Islam will escape Hellfire because every sect of Islam believes that they are following the real Islam. There are hundreds of sects and sub-sects in Islam. Different schools of thought offer different explanations as to what qualifies one as a believer. So who is destined to Hellfire?
Orthodox Sunni Muslims strongly believe that they will escape Hellfire. Teachers of Sunni law have argued that "Islam" means Sunni Islam only, and sects such as Shia, Ahmedi, Sufi etc, will also be sent to Hell. In trying to explain why all the other sects are displeasing to Allah, Sunnis offer the following verse from the Qur'an;
"Of those who split up their religion and became schismatics, each sect exulting in its tenets." (Q: 30.32)
Sunnis make up nearly 90% of all Muslims. Now, if we assume that only Sunnis can escape Hellfire, we are making a mistake, because it leads to another question. According to Bukhari,
"I heard Allah's Apostle saying, 'From my followers there will be a crowd of 70,000 in number who will enter Paradise whose faces will glitter as the moon.'" (Bukhari: 8.76.550)
"Verily! 70,000 of my followers will enter Paradise altogether; so that the first and the last amongst them will enter at the same time." (Bukhari: 4.54.410).
Since there is no other place beyond Paradise and Hell, the billion plus Muslims will burn into Hellfire except those lucky 70,000 Muslims. Now the next question is; how to identify these 70,000 people? Tabari recorded,
"I asked the Messenger of Allah how many prophets there were. He replied, '124,000'." (Tabari: I. 323).
Logically, all the Prophets of Allah had first preference to enter Paradise. It means there is no vacancy in Paradise. Not only this; already 54,000 Prophets had been turned away. So, all the present, past and future Muslims will go to Hell along with the infidels in spite of practicing Islam. The long list of confusions starts from here.
"Every created soul has his place written for him either in Paradise or in the Hell Fire (Bukhari: 6.60.473).
But according to Qur'an,
"And ye shall be sorted out into three classes" (Q: 56.7)
So the third group of people will go where? No one knows.
Hell and Hellfire were brought into existence by Muhammad's hallucination and weird imagination. He was a Malignant Narcissist. When he wanted to lure the Jews and Christians in Islam, he revealed the flowing verses, according to which the Jews and Christians can also escape Hellfire.
"Those who believe (in the Qur'an), those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Sabians and the Christians, - any who believe in Allah and the Last Day, and work righteousness, - on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve." (Q: 5.69)
"Those who believe in the Qur'an...and the Christians...shall have their reward with their Lord; on them shall be no fear, nor they shall grieve" (Q: 2.62)
But the clever Jews and Christians paid little attention to Muhammad realizing that he was an imposter. It made Muhammad frustrated and Allah revealed the following verses, according to which no infidel can escape Hellfire.
"And whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will never be accepted of him, and in the hereafter he will be one of the losers". (Q: 3.85)
"Those who reject (Truth), among the People of the Book and among the Polytheists, will be in Hell Fire, to dwell therein (for aye). They are the worst of creatures" (Q: 98.6).
"But those who reject Islam and are disbelievers, denying our Signs and Revelations, they shall be the owners of the Hell Fire." (Q: 5.86)
"O Children of Israel! Worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord. Whoever joins other gods with Allah-Allah will forbid him the Paradise and the Fire will be his abode" (Q: 5.72).
The descriptions of Hellfire are so vivid that Muslims are mentally paralyzed at the very thought of it. Like the mental patient of the fictitious dragon story, they cannot see the deception of Muhammad. Whenever an analytical discussion is made about Islam, Muslims quickly proclaim scientific miracles in Qur'an, but what they talk is not science but pseudo-science. Let us analyze following two quotes.
"Fever is from the heat of the Hell Fire; so cool it with water.'" (Bukhari: 4.54.484)
"Allah's Apostle said, 'If it is very hot, the severity of the heat is from the raging of the Hell Fire.'" (Bukhari: 1.10.510)
If a person finds science in the above quotes, then he will find enough science in Voodoo also.
Following quotes are even more ridiculous. According to these, the 'Paradise' and 'Hell' are living creatures and they can argue with each other.
"The Prophet explained, 'Paradise and Hell argued…. Allah said to the Hell Fire, 'You are my (means of) punishment by which I torment whoever I wish of my slaves'." (Bukhari: 6.60.373)
"Allah's Apostle said, 'The Hell Fire complained to its Lord saying, "O my Lord! My different parts are eating each other up." So, He allowed it to take two breaths, one in winter, the other in summer. This is the reason for the severe heat and bitter cold you find in weather.'" (Bukhari: 4.54.482)
If Hellfire is a living creature, then how different parts of the same body can eat each other? Can a cannibal eat himself? Secondly, how Hellfire can be the reason of both 'severe heat' and 'bitter cold'? Bukhari recorded,
"The Prophet said, 'The Hell Fire is 69 times hotter than ordinary worldly fires'" (Bukhari: 4.54.487).
The fire which is 69 times hotter than ordinary fire cannot produce bitter cold. Science does not go along with blind faith but pseudo-science does.
Is Hellfire already started or is it a futuristic event? Even Allah does not know. According to Bukhari, Hellfire is already started.
"The Prophet said: 'I was shown the Hell Fire and the majority of its dwellers were women who are disbelievers or ungrateful.' (Bukhari: 1.22.28)
But according to Qur'an it is not yet started.
"When the disastrous calamity comes; and Hell Fire shall be placed in full view for (all) to see, then for him who rebelled, Hell Fire will be his home." (Q: 79.34)
When the event befalleth, there is no denying that it will befall, abasing (some), exalting (others) (Q: 56.1, 2, 3)
"And Hell is brought near that day; on that day man will remember, but how will the remembrance (then avail him)"? (Q: 89.23)
If it is a futuristic event, how Muhammad saw the Hellfire? If it is already started, then above verses are false. Whom to believe; Allah or Muhammad?
Allah definitely needs tons of fuel to keep the Hellfire on. According to Qur'an; the stones, Pagan Gods and stubborn unbelievers make the fuel of Hell.
"O you who have believed, protect yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is people and stones..." (Q: 66.6)
"…then fear the Fire, whose fuel is men and stones, prepared for the disbelievers." (Q: 2.24)
"Indeed, you (disbelievers) and what you worship other than God are the firewood of Hell. Had these (false deities) been (actual) gods, they would not have come to it, but all are eternal therein." (Q: 21.98-99)
All the verses talking about the fuel of Hellfire are illogical. The bodies of the disbelievers will only offer a given and finite amount of fuel for fire. Eventually there will be nothing left to burn. This is same for all the deities.
Secondly; all leaving creatures will ultimately leave their bodies on the earth at the time of death. It is the "soul" that will either enter Hell or Paradise not the body. Since the soul is without body, it is obviously without cells, without neural receptors, and therefore without pain.
"I will drive him into Hellfire … it lets nothing remain and leaves nothing (unburned), altering the skins." (Q: 74.26-29)
The above verse is ridiculous. It contradicts itself. It says the Hellfire leaves nothing unburned and at the same time it also says that the Hellfire alters the skin. If nothing is left there is no question of alteration of skin.
In the following verses Allah's stupidity takes one step further. According to Qur'an, souls have replaceable skin and belly.
"… every time their skins are roasted through We will replace them with other skins so they may taste the punishment." (Q: 4.56)
"… poured upon their heads will be scalding water by which is melted that within their bellies and (their) skins." (Q: 22.19-20)
Muslim scholars have already noticed this inconsistency in Hellfire theory. They came out with a wonderful logic. According to them, Hellfire consists of smokeless fire that "burns, but does not consume" (Ahmad, 2006, p.351). But how a fire can burn without fuel? Secondly, if the fire does not consume one's flesh, there is no pain. Pain is caused by neural receptors in the brain alerting the living creature to cells being destroyed. If the fire does not consume one's flesh, no cells are destroyed, and thus there is no pain. Dead bodies do not feel pain because the brain is dead. This is what science says.
Eternal flames cannot be a true punishment to be feared. If the fire is never-ending, there is enough time to develop a higher tolerance of pain. It is a fact that human beings can reach a mental state where they do not feel pain. As example, the Buddhist monks in Vietnam can set themselves on fire without showing any reaction while burning to death (Batchelor, 1994, p. 354). They have nothing to fear from Hellfire.
Allah is so revengeful that He has arranged chains, yokes, and fetters in his Hell for the disbelievers, who will be tied up with chains and dragged with yokes on their necks,
"… for the rejecters We have prepared iron chains, yokes, and a blazing Fire." (Q: 76.4)
"With us are fetters (to bind them) …" (Q: 73.12)
"We will put yokes on the necks of the unbelievers." (Q: 34.33)
"When yokes will be put round their necks and the chains, they will be dragged along." (Q: 40.71)
"… make him march in a chain, whereof the length is seventy cubits." (Q: 69.32)
But the above verses lead to another doubt. Allah says that the Hellfire "lets nothing remain and leaves nothing (unburned)… (Q: 74.26-29)". If nothing remains, then the chains, yokes, and fetters are of what use?
Next confusion is about the food of the Hell. According to Qur'an the disbelievers will eat from the obnoxious tree of Zakkum which will churn like boiling oil causing immense suffering. They have nothing else to drink except boiling hot water which will cause them further suffering.
"No food will there be for them except from a bitter, thorny plant which neither nourishes nor avails against hunger." (Q: 88.6-7)
"Indeed, the tree of zaqqum is food for the sinful, like murky oil, it boils within bellies, like the boiling of scalding water." (Q: 44.43-46)
But following verses contradict above verses. The disbelievers will eat festering puss that oozes out of their decaying skin and burnt flesh.
"So no friend has he here this Day, nor has he any food except filth from the washing of wounds which none do eat but those in sin." (Q: 69.35-37)
"This – so let them taste it – is scalding water and (foul) purulence. And other (punishments) of its type (in various) kinds." (Q: 38.57-58)
"A boiling fluid and fluid dark, murky, intensely cold." (Q: 38.57)
Few doubts are immediately raised. The first one obviously is how Qur'anic verses are contradicting each other. Secondly, how a Zakkum tree can grow in Hell or boiling water can be available to drink, whose fire is 69 times hotter than normal fire? Tree cannot grow in fire and water will instantly vaporize in such an extreme hot atmosphere. Third; if the Hellfire leaves nothing unburned, then how festering puss can ooze out of decaying skin?
Franklin's dragon and Allah's Hellfire -- both are based on unshakable blind belief. What is the difference between a dragon that is invisible, floating, leaves no foot-print, emits heatless fire, cause painless bite and a dragon which does not exist? There is no way you can disprove my argument, but at the same time you cannot prove me false and shake my belief. My 'sincere belief and fear' is the only proof of the existence of the dragon.
Then actually what is going on in my mind?
First of all, I am asking you to take my sincerity as an authentic proof. Then I am asking you to 'believe' me unquestionably even if logic, commonsense and science are defied. This is the strength of the blind belief. The absence of evidence cannot be taken as the evidence of the absence of the dragon.
Muhammad described the Hell fire so vividly that it really does not matter to the Muslims whether these are true or false. They will give hundred explanations to make the Hellfire theory 'meaningful' to them. This is the strange mindset of Muslims. They invent their own 'truth' to renew their faith in Islam. They prefer to live under constant fear of Allah's punishment and they are capable of spending their whole life in this delusion. As Butler (cited Sagan, 1997, p. 136) wrote,
"A credulous mind… finds most delight in believing strange things, and the stranger they are the easier they pass with him; but never regards those that are plain and feasible, for every man can believe such".
Islam is a spiritual tyranny. A real God shall never resort to sex, violence and torture to gain followers. It is an evil ploy of Muhammad. The tempting description of Paradise and painful description of Hell had only one reason behind it - to secure more converts to his faith. Little thoughts are required to understand that Muhammad was playing the role of God in fabricating the Qur'anic verses. Allah was Muhammad's 'instrument' to fulfill his self-serving narcissistic desires. Following quote from the Hadith makes everything clear.
"Allah's Apostle said, 'Whoever obeys me will enter Paradise, and whoever disobeys me will not enter it'" (Bukhari: 9.92.384)
" ... If you love Allah, and follow me (Muhammad), God will love you, and forgive you your sins." (Q: 3. 25)
Allah is obliged to throw a person in Hell even if he is sincerely devoted of Him but does not believe in Muhammad's Prophetic claim. So we can see how helpless the God of Islam is. Such a weak God does not exist. Neither he has the power to throw the non-Muslims in Hell nor can he reward anyone with Paradise. Hellfire theory was a useful tool for Muhammad to use the fear factor for propagating his religion. There are 146 references to Hell in the Qur'an. Out of this, 94% of the reasons for being in Hell are for the intellectual sin of disagreeing with Muhammad, an unpardonable crime (Glazov & Warner, 2007). The common Muslim masses are just stupefied by this Hellfire theory. Their ethical and logical faculties are completely subdued.
This absurd theory is the main support of Islam for domination. It worked wonder for Muhammad by enriching and empowering him during his lifetime. Today it works wonder for the Imams, Mullahs and tyrants alike. Islam was created for one Malignant Narcissist's quest for narcissistic attention. It is utter foolishness to search for spirituality in Islam. Islam is not just a false belief but also a mental disorder that reduces sane people into insane people. That's why they cannot see the dishonesty of their Prophet.
Sagan, Carl (1997); The Demon Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark. Ballantine Books. Random House Inc. USA.
Lovecraft, H. P (1973); Supernatural horror in literature. Dover Publications, Inc. NY.
Ahmad, Mahmood bin (2006); The magnificence of the Qur'an. Maktaba Dar-us-Salam. Riyadh.
Batchelor, Stephen (1994); The awakening of the west: the encounter of Buddhism and Western culture. Parallax Press. California
Glazov, Jamie, Warner (2007); The Study of Political Islam. An interview of Bill Warner published on February 05, 2007. FrontPageMagazine.com. URL: https://184.108.40.206/readArticle.aspx?ARTID=297 (Last accessed Apr. 19 / 2010)
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