“Then I saw the (Hell) Fire, and I have never before, seen such a horrible sight as that, and I saw that the majority of its dwellers were women.” –Muhammad
Stupidity, barbarism, and craziness are so prevalent in today’s major religions that a little bit of study of the religions with an open mind would help us to realize that they are manmade and an absolute sham. One of the crazy ideas that religions invented is the idea of heaven and Hell. While they seem like some of the best incentives to keep people moral, they actually are not even any proper incentive. Moreover, if we need the belief of heaven and Hell to be good to others then our morality should be questionable. However, one big question I want to answer before I start to describe the main topic is: Is the idea of Hell scientifically accurate? The simple answer is: the idea of Hell is as unscientific as much it is inhumane.
Hell is an unscientific idea
It is not possible for a human being to stay in Hell forever because fire cannot continue to burn a human body forever as the body will eventually become nothing. That is because our bodies only gives a finite amount of energy which makes it impossible to burn for eternity. But if a theist presents a counter-argument against that by saying, “In Hell, Allah or God will switch off the laws of nature and that makes describing Hellfire impossible”, that will be a very weak argument. The theist will also commit a red-herring fallacy because instead of answering the argument that was presented, the counter-argument will distract one from the reality or actual argument and demand that we imagine something that is not possible (we cannot imagine something where there is no law of nature).
Moreover, in the “holy” scriptures, where is it said that “the fire does not consume flesh in Hell” or “only soul exists in Hell”? Nowhere, in the books, it is said that the laws and theories of nature will not work in Hell. Rather we find from the scriptures like the Quran that God is talking about fire, not smokeless fire, God is talking about skin, shoulder, bones, flesh etc. and a mere soul does not have any of that. To me, Hell and its factors completely sound natural. Yet, if we had to take the fallacious arguments that the theists assert to make the idea of Hell immune from scientific scrutiny as the truth then also those arguments could be questioned scientifically.
For example, if the fire of Hell is smokeless and that only burns but does not consume anything then there will be no pain under that fire. We feel pain only when the pain receptors send a signal to our brain through nerve fibers to alert us to our cells being destroyed. So if the fire only burns and does not consume flesh that means no cells are destroyed and so there is no pain! Again, if there is no flesh in Hell and only the soul exists (by the way, what is the soul and who proved that scientifically?), there will be no body, no cells, no pain receptors, no spinal cord, no nerve fiber and hence, again, no pain. It is really foolish to believe something as an ultimate truth which is both scientifically inexplicable and inhumane.
Almost every major religion has the idea of Hell and among them, I found the idea of Islamic Hell as the most awkward, dangerous, and stupid one. I also think that it is not apropos at all to inculcate this idea of Islamic Hell into the mind of the little children. Once you finish reading this article with an open mind, you will also completely agree with me. The Hell that Allah has created for the non-Muslims is not any mere Hell with fire but so dangerous and horrifying that it would literally make anybody to cringe and doubt what kind of deity Allah is. In the Quran and Hadiths, Allah (in the Hadiths, Muhammad) over and over and over again threatened non-Muslims and even sometimes Muslims by gruesome Islamic Hell. It is not referred to as any spiritual punishment of Allah in the Quran and Hadiths. Rather the Quran and Hadiths explicitly describe Hell’s characteristics and constituents which makes it impossible to be only a spiritual punishment. In the Quran, Hell is described as having the ability to inhale and talk.
“When they are cast therein, they will hear the (terrible) drawing in of its breath even as it blazes forth,” (Quran 67:7)
One Day We will ask Hell, "Art thou filled to the full?" It will say, "Are there any more (to come)?" (Quran 50:30)
So, the Islamic Hell is made as a hungry fire-giant by Allah. According to a Hadith, Hell is so deep that if a stone were thrown, it would take 70 years for that stone to reach the bottom. In another Hadith, Muhammad said that the fire is blacker than tar. He also said that the fire of Hell is seventy times greater than the fire on earth! But why is it so? The fire on our planet is enough to torture someone forever with excruciating pain. Why then it had to be 70 times greater in intensity? Can somebody hate anybody that much? Actually, Hell is depicted in the most horrifying way possible that a 7th century Arab Bedouin could imagine. If, however, the Quran were sent in today’s time, it would promise other different types of painful punishment, e.g., punishing through severe electric shock. But, fortunately for the non-Muslims, “omniscient” Allah did not know anything about electricity 1400 years ago.
Allah created humans as a fuel of Hell
A challenge: after reading this section of this article whenever you see or hear: “Allah, the most Merciful and the most Beneficent,” you will laugh out loud. The idea of why Allah created men and jinns (a mythical creature in Islam) in the first place is going to make you see Allah completely differently. In the Quran Allah said:
“Whomsoever Allah guides, he is the guided one, and whomsoever He sends astray, those! They are the losers. And surely, We have created many of the jinns and mankind for Hell.” (Quran 7:178-179)
“If thy Lord had so willed, He could have made mankind one people: but they will not cease to dispute. Except those on whom thy Lord hath bestowed His Mercy: and for this did He create them: and the Word of thy Lord shall be fulfilled: "I will fill Hell with jinns and men all together." (Quran 1:118-119)
Allah also said in the Quran that men are the fuel of Hell fire:
“…guard yourselves against the Fire prepared for disbelievers, whose fuel is of men and stones.” (Quran 2:24)
We also read in the Quran:
“And if your lord willed, all who are on the earth would have believed together.” (Quran 10:99)
Thus, from the above verses it can be inferred that Allah only created men as a fuel and to fill the fire-giant’s (Hell’s) belly. Also notice that in the last verse among the verses mentioned above, Allah said that if Allah had willed, we would have been saved from the Hellfire. But as Hell exists and we are going to be burning in Hellfire forever, that only means that Allah does not wish or want us to be saved. And also notice that Allah himself sends people astray and divide people because, again, he does not want us to be saved. Anyway, when I first read those verses I just wondered what sort of people would believe in such a deity so ardently.
Allah will punish non-Muslims in the most gruesome way possible
Now that we know that Allah has created humans as a fuel of Hell deliberately, we can now move forward to know how Allah will use the fuel in Hell.
First of all, the punishment of the sinners will be so excruciating that the “sinners” will yearn for their self-destruction and yet, Allah, “the merciful one”, will neither destroy them nor will he save them from Hell. Instead, he would keep tormenting them there forever.
“The sinners will be in the Punishment of Hell, to dwell therein (for aye): Nowise will the (Punishment) be lightened for them, and in despair will they be there overwhelmed. Nowise shall We be unjust to them: but it is they who have been unjust themselves. They will cry: "O Malik! (chief gatekeeper of Hell), would that thy Lord put an end to us!" He will say, "Nay, but ye shall abide!" (Quran 43:74-77)
Have you started to find Satan as the more compassionate one than Allah now? Quran surely sounds that way. The non-Muslim sinners will stay in Hell forever, as indicated above, and will never be exempt from the cruel punishment of Allah.
“Verily, Allah has cursed the disbelievers, and has prepared for them a flaming Fire (Hell) wherein they will abide forever: no protector will they find, nor helper”. (Quran 33:64-65)
This concept will sound more horrible and illogical to you when you will think in this way: if I don’t believe in a god or believe in many gods, because either Allah led me astray or Satan led me astray or I, as a fallible creature, made a mistake in comprehending the true nature of the universe (by the way, I am fallible because Allah made me fallible in the first place), it will not harm Allah or anyone. It is similar to, say, you are a Democrat and do not believe in a Republican government and your belief is no way harmful to anybody or anything. But you will be punished if somebody gets hurt for your ardent belief in the Democratic Party, e.g., if you killed a Republican just because she is a Republican. But would that be logical if a Republican president immured a Democrat and kept her in a prison forever just because she is a Democrat? No. Then why should it be logical in the case of God or Allah? Another analogy could be made by comparing Mr. Stephen Hawking’s life. Unfortunately, he died in the month of March and one day after his death, I saw a post on Facebook which said, “Not believed in God, now burn in Hell forever Hawking.” How despicable! A person who passed most of the time in his life by sitting in a wheelchair and teaching students about the nature of the universe, by committing no harm to anybody or anything will now burn in Hell forever just because of a mere belief! It will become more despicable to think of when you imagine a person like Mr. Hawking in an Islamic Hell. Thank goodness I am an atheist and do not have to think in this way about anybody.
Burning in Hellfire forever is not enough for Allah to torture a mere creature. In several places in the Quran, Allah vehemently announced what sort of foods and drinks the unbelievers will have in Hell and unsurprisingly those foods and drinks are the worst things possible. You would not even feed your worst enemy with those foods. Only a psychopath would feed someone with such dismaying foods and drinks which only would make one more hungry or make one choke or boil the intestines.
The foods and drinks which Allah will provide are the followings:
- Filthy fluid of pus and blood: "Thus, All this. But indeed for the oppressors will be an evil place of final return. It is Hellfire - they will burn therein, and how evil is that bed, Thus, then will they taste it - a boiling fluid and a filthy fluid of pus and blood and other penalties of a similar kind to match them." (Quran 38:55-58)
- Boiling water: “…Then will you fill your stomachs with it and drink boiling water on top of it, and you will drink boiling water on top of it, and you will drink like diseased camels…” (Quran 56:51-56)
- A thorny plant: "No food will there be for them but a bitter Dhari' (a thorny plant) Which will neither nourish nor satisfy hunger.” (Quran 88:6-7)
- A tree that "springs out of the bottom of Hell-fire” (Zaqqum): "Verily the tree of Zaqqum Will be the food of the Sinful,- Like molten brass; it will boil in their insides. Like the boiling of scalding water." (Quran 44:43-46)
- Choking foods: “With Us are yokes (to bind them) and fire (to burn them) and food that chokes and a grievous punishment." (Quran 73:12-13)
- Foods which come from the washing of wounds: "So he has no friend here this Day, nor does he have any food except what comes from the washing of wounds, which none will eat except the sinners." (Quran 69:35-37)
Now, it is pretty much understandable how horrible Allah’s mindset could be. But it seems like, according to the Quran and Hadiths, Allah’s thirst of punishing his own mere creatures cannot be quenched just by punishing in the ways mentioned above. There are several other gruesome techniques of Allah to punish his fallible creatures whom he made fallible intentionally in the first place. The other techniques of punishment are as follows:
1. Pouring boiled water over the head, providing garments of liquid pitch and fire, beating with maces made of Iron: "These two antagonists dispute with each other about their Lord: But those who deny (their Lord),- for them will be cut out a garment of Fire: over their heads will be poured out boiling water. With it will be scalded what is within their bodies, as well as (their) skins. In addition there will be maces of iron (to punish) them. Every time they wish to get away therefrom, from anguish, they will be forced back therein, and (it will be said), "Taste ye the Penalty of Burning!"" (Quran 22:19-22)
2. Restricting by chains and fetters: “When the Hellfire sees them from a distant place, they will hear its fury and roaring. And when they are thrown into a narrow place therein bound in chains, they will cry out thereupon for destruction.” (Quran 25:12-13)
"With Us are Fetters (to bind them), and a Fire (to burn them), And a Food that chokes, and a Penalty Grievous." (Quran 73:12-13)
Why would Allah bind the Hell dwellers with chains and fetters? Does Allah fear that they could come out of the Hell someday and destroy his throne?
3. Burning face and displacing lips: "The Fire will burn their faces, and they will therein grin, with their lips displaced." (Quran 23:104)
4. Changing skin to roast again and again and again and again…: "Those who reject our Signs, We shall soon cast into the Fire: as often as their skins are roasted through, We shall change them for fresh skins, that they may taste the penalty: for Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise.” (Quran 4:56)
Unbelievers will also be given thick skin in the Hell so that their skin burns for a longer period. That, as a result, would prolong the agony. (Sahih Muslim (40:6831)
5. Bringing out intestines: "Narrated Abu Wail: [...] He said, "I have heard him [Allah's Apostle] saying, "A man will be brought on the Day of Resurrection and thrown in the (Hell) Fire, so that his intestines will come out, and he will go around like a donkey goes around a millstone.”-Sahih Bukhari 4:54:489
6. Boiling brain by smoldering shoe: "The person who will have the least punishment from amongst the Hell Fire people on the Day of Resurrection, will be a man under whose arch of the feet a smoldering ember will be placed so that his brain will boil because of it."" -Sahih Bukhari 8:76:566
7. Hanging by the breasts: "In Hell I saw women hanging by their breasts. They had fathered bastards." - Ishaq:185
8. Moving burning stone from nipple to shoulder: "Narrated Al-Ahnaf bin Qais: While I was sitting with some people from Quraish, a man with very rough hair, clothes, and appearance came and stood in front of us, greeted us and said, "Inform those who hoard wealth, that a stone will be heated in the Hell-fire and will be put on the nipples of their breasts till it comes out from the bones of their shoulders and then put on the bones of their shoulders till it comes through the nipples of their breasts the stone will be moving and hitting." After saying that, the person retreated and sat by the side of the pillar, I followed him and sat beside him, and I did not know who he was. I said to him, "I think the people disliked what you had said." He said, "These people do not understand anything, although my friend told me." I asked, "Who is your friend?" He said, "The Prophet said (to me), ... " -Sahih Bukhari 2:24:489
Wow! How nice of the merciful God of the peaceful religion! Ask yourself now: if a person commits a harmless sin, say, for 100 years then how could it be equal to those grievous punishments of eternity? Where is the equality in the judgment of Allah? Will we punish a thief by cutting off his hands or putting him in a prison forever? Should a liar be punished through cutting off his tongue? We call punishing humans by torturing now barbaric and psychologists would rather suggest, depending on the crimes, psychological therapy or counseling or life incarceration for the criminals.
There are so many examples of how a major thief realized his crime and came back in the society like a decent human being and helped to eradicate stealing from the society, many examples of how an addicted came back in the society and helped to build up a beautiful society. I am not in any way supporting any of those criminals and their activities, obviously, but just trying to say that cruel physical punishments of the religions and other ideologies have never worked to deter crime and criminals. In the UK, the rate of homicide continues to decrease despite abolishing capital punishment in 1973, which means capital punishment could not deter murder as much as socio-economic development did. Moreover, people commit a crime sometimes, because of various psychological predispositions (which are pretty hard to control), the intensity of an incident, unhealthy diet (e.g. excessive alcohol consumption), and environmental and social factors that affected their life in the past. In a study of Journal of Adolescent Health, Dr. Jonathan Groner, an associate professor of surgery at Ohio State University College of Medicine and Public Health who researches the deterrent effect of capital punishment, said regarding most of the criminals and crimes:
"The psychological mindset of the criminal is such that they are not able to consider consequences at the time of the crime. Most crimes are crimes of passion that are done in situations involving intense excitement or concern. People who commit these crimes are not in a normal state of mind -- they do not consider the consequences in a logical way."
He also said this regarding capital punishment:
"It is very clear that deterrents are not effective in the area of capital punishment,"
So, what could reduce crimes like murder and stealing? Mr. Groner describes:
"The murder rate is most closely associated with the socio-economic health of the country. The murder rate in the U.S. was highest during the Depression. Also, the majority of people on death row are from the most blighted parts of the U.S. They are very poor and very impoverished. A very high percentage have mental health problems. Good access to health care and improving the socioeconomic health of our country's cities would reduce the murder rate more effectively than executions."
So, according to the today’s intellectuals, physical punishment has always been futile to deter crime. Instead, they think the development of the socio-economic condition is the key.
To make this relationship between crime and punishment more clear, I want to give another analogy: imagine a prison in a civilized country where criminals are immured. There they have got clean foods and clothes, library, recreational activities, chances of talking to their families etc. But why a modern and civilized society is providing those privileges to the criminals? Because a modern society learns from history, learns through experience, reasoning, and scientific analysis and by that, it evolves. Cruel and barbaric punishments had been practiced on our planet and every time that practice just worsened the situation instead of ameliorating it and modern societies learned lessons from that. They also learned that criminals deserve a chance to realize their crime and punishing them horribly physically is not the solution to that. Consequently, they stripped barbarism away. Actually, that is how we, as civilized people, have learned to think through the evolution of our ways of thinking. We have become civilized only because we can identify and admit the problems in our thinking and stop them, unlike Allah or God. To make our morality better we have never needed any religious book but needed our own endeavor to think, to criticize others thinking, and to engage in a civilized debate. So, it is now obvious that Allah has got various problems in his judgment and could easily be tagged as a barbaric deity in our modern and civilized society.
Verses describing Hell are inappropriate for children
Now, the verses mentioned above raise another major question: how one could teach her children those verses? Like this way: “Honey, please do not question Allah’s barbarism or his existence or Muhammad’s pedophilia, otherwise you will be burned in Hell forever and there you will be fed with pus, blood, and thorny tree. There, also, your skin and brain will be burned and boiled, respectively, over and over again”? If it were right, then I guess, I could threaten a kid to do his homework by saying: “Dear kid, please do your homework properly and if you don’t, I will burn your finger and feed you mosquitos and pus.” Moreover, in the Islamic world, many children are taught those brutal verses and other ludicrous verses of the Quran and Hadiths in Madrasas (Islamic schools, where children are often molested and a perfect place for terrorists). If in this way a kid is brainwashed with such egregious verses, very easily he could be filled with hatred and blow away himself in the midst of a crowd with the opposite beliefs. After all, if you ardently revere a deity with so much hatred, then you will, generally, inherit some of the hateful attributes of that deity for yourself.
The dwellers of Hell don’t deserve constant painful punishment
There are actually seven gates of Hell for seven types of “sinners” who committed sins because Allah led them astray because Allah does not wish them to be saved from the Hellfire.
“And verily, Hell is the promised abode for them all! To it are seven gates: for each of those gates is a (special) class (of sinners) assigned." (Quran 15:43-44)
Now, how many of the earth’s people will reside in the Islamic insane Hell? Well, in a short answer, 99% of humans.
"Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, "The first man to be called on the Day of Resurrection will be Adam who will be shown his offspring, and it will be said to them, 'This is your father, Adam.' Adam will say (responding to the call), 'Labbaik and Sa'daik' Then Allah will say (to Adam), 'Take out of your offspring, the people of Hell.' Adam will say, 'O Lord, how many should I take out?' Allah will say, 'Take out ninety-nine out of every hundred." They (the Prophet's companions) said, "O Allah's Apostle! If ninety-nine out of every one hundred of us are taken away, what will remain out of us?" He said, "My followers in comparison to the other nations are like a white hair on a black ox."" - Sahih Bukhari 8:76:536
Yes, you read that right, and I know that you are not surprised now as you already have got the idea of how cruel Allah can be. It is also noteworthy that one of the most common beliefs of the Muslims is that no Muslim will live in Hell forever no matter what is the crime of that Muslim. Unlike the non-Muslims, sooner or later every Muslim will go to the paradise (Islamic paradise is nothing but a brothel). Who are those 99% people that are going to reside in Hell forever? Read the following:
- Wives who are not obedient and grateful to their husbands: "Narrated 'Abdullah bin Abbas: [...] Then I saw the (Hell) Fire, and I have never before, seen such a horrible sight as that, and I saw that the majority of its dwellers were women.’ The people asked, ‘O Allah's Apostle! What is the reason for that?’ He replied, ‘Because of their ungratefulness.’ It was said. ‘Do they disbelieve in Allah (are they ungrateful to Allah)?’ He replied, ‘They are not thankful to their husbands and are ungrateful for the favors done to them. Even if you do good to one of them all your life, when she seems some harshness from you, she will say, ‘I have never seen any good from you.’’” -Sahih Bukhari 7:62:125
- Artists: "The people who will receive the severest punishment from Allah will be the picture makers". -Shahi Bukhari 72:834
- Overbearing and proud people: "Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: There was a dispute between the Hell and the Paradise and it (the Hell) said: The haughty and the proud would find abode in me. And the Paradise said: The meek and the humble would find their abode in me. Thereupon Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, (addressing the Hell) said: You are (the means) of My punishment by which I punish those of My servants whom I wish. (And addressing the Paradise) He said: You are only My Mercy by means of which I shall show mercy to those whom I wish, but each one of you would be full." - Sahih Muslim 40:6818
- Hypocrites (people who act like Muslim because if caught otherwise, could be executed, since according to Islam, apostasy is punishable by death): "The Hypocrites will be in the lowest depths of the Fire: no helper wilt thou find for them;-" (Qur'an 4:145)
- Polytheists: "Verily ye, (unbelievers), and the (false) gods that ye worship besides Allah, are (but) fuel for Hell! to it will ye (surely) come! If these had been gods, they would not have got there! but each one will abide therein." (Quran 21:98-99)
- Satanic Jinns: "Amongst us (jinns) are some that submit their wills (to Allah), and some that swerve from justice. Now those who submit their wills - they have sought out (the path) of right conduct: But those who swerve,- they are (but) fuel for Hell-fire" (Quran 72:14-15)
- People who commit suicide: "Narrated Thabit bin Ad-Dahhak: The Prophet (p.b.u.h) said, "Whoever intentionally swears falsely by a religion other than Islam, then he is what he has said, (e.g. if he says, 'If such thing is not true then I am a Jew,' he is really a Jew). '"And whoever commits suicide with piece of iron will be punished with the same piece of iron in the Hell Fire."' Narrated Jundab "the Prophet said, "A man was inflicted with wounds and he committed suicide, and so Allah said: My slave has caused death on himself hurriedly, so I forbid Paradise for him."" - Sahih Bukhari 2:23:445
- People who are unjust: "At length will be said to the wrong-doers: 'Taste ye the enduring punishment! ye get but the recompense of what ye earned!" (Quran 10:52)
- People who actively lead their worldly lives: "These are the people who buy the life of this world at the price of the Hereafter: their penalty shall not be lightened nor shall they be helped." (Qur'an 2:86)
- Murderers of Muslims: "If a man kills a believer intentionally, his recompense is Hell, to abide therein (Forever): And the wrath and the curse of Allah are upon him, and a dreadful penalty is prepared for him." (Quran 4:93)
- Particular Jews and Christians: "The Jews call 'Uzair a son of Allah, and the Christians call Christ the son of Allah. That is a saying from their mouth; (in this) they but imitate what the unbelievers of old used to say. Allah's curse be on them: how they are deluded away from the Truth!" (Quran 9:30), "Abu Musa' reported that Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: When it will be the Day of Resurrection Allah would deliver to every Muslim a Jew or a Christian and say: That is your rescue from Hell-Fire." - Sahih Muslim 37:6665
Do any of the people mentioned above deserve the inhumane and barbaric punishments of Allah in Hell? You could argue murderers were mentioned, they should be punished severely as their crime is unforgivable. Yes, murder is the vilest crime and I would say a life incarceration without any parole is way better than execution. I have already described above how execution is not the best choice. However, punishments like the execution of a perpetrator of a murder or a mass-murder or genocide or multiple rapes can be justified but yet that punishment would not sound in any way like the punishments of Allah. After all, executing a mass-murderer is not equal to torturing a mass-murderer forever in the most inhumane way possible and getting pleasure from his pain and suffering. But what kind of person gets pleasure by inflicting pain and suffering on others? A sadist. Not only Allah will get pleasure from the sufferings of Hell dwellers forever, Allah is also responsible for all the pains, sufferings, problems, and misunderstandings among the human beings. Because Allah is an omniscient and omnipotent god, he knew well ahead of everything that people will suffer so much on the earth and 99% of the people will burn in Hell forever and despite that, he let that happen. It is like you know that if your girlfriend goes out of her house today, she will be hit by a bus and will die on the spot and yet, you let her go out of her house instead of stopping her. In a conversation between Allah and the angels during the creation of Adam, the angels asked Allah why he was going to create humans, knowing that they would suffer most of the time. The reply of Allah to that question is he knew what angels did not know.
“Behold, thy Lord said to the angels: ‘I will create a vicegerent on earth." They said: "Wilt Thou place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood? whilst we do celebrate Thy praises and glorify Thy holy (name)?" He said: "I know what ye know not.’” (Quran 2:30)
Now that is like nothing but an inane and equivocal reply to any intellectual. But the question of the angels made complete sense. You will not do something which will make billions of people suffer for eternity if you become an omniscient person, will you?
So, after all this discussion, we can easily assert that Allah intentionally let people to suffer to get pleasure from that and that makes him nothing but a sadistic deity.