Jinn and Men created for Hell?

Question

Dear Reader,

Assalaamu alaikum. My question is regarding taqdeer. It is a subject that nurtures countless different interpretations among religious scholars, but the one I find most satisfying is that of Ghamidi sahab. He holds the opinion that man is only bound in some issues, such as where will he be born, his physical and mental abilities, his age at the time of death etc, and for the rest of the issues he is not predestined and decides his own future through his decisions in matters of morality. However, this doctrine seems to be in contradiction with Quran, Surah al A'raf [7:179]. Allah says he has "certainly created for Hell many of the jinn and mankind". Does this verse not tell us that these humans and jinn are predestined to go to hell. It seems their sole purpose was to suffer in Hell. Secondly this seems to be in contradiction to some of Allah's attributes such as the Merciful and the Beneficent. Why would a Loving and all Merciful God create some beings so that they can only suffer in Hell. I am eagerly awaiting your valuable reply.


Answer

Salaam

Thank you for writing to us.

The essence of understanding this Aayah is to realize the implication of the prefix "لِ" (translated as 'for'). It is important to note that the Arabic prefix "لِ", very much like its English counterpart 'for' is used in extremely diverse implications. One of the many implications of "لِ" is 'For the ultimate destiny of'. This usage is clearly supported in the following poetic verses:

ألا كل مولود فللموت يولد ولست أری حيا عليها يخلد

(كما في "البحر المحيط" تحت تفسير االأعراف: ١٧٩)

Behold, all that are born are born for [the destiny] of death. I have not seen any living being, who is born for eternal living.

In another verse, a poet says:

فللموت تغدو الوالدات سخالها كما لخراب الدهر تبنى المساكن

(كما في "البحر المحيط" تحت تفسير االأعراف: ١٧٩)

For [the ultimate destiny of] death do the girls raise their children; just as for [the ultimate] desertion are the houses constructed.

Ali Ibn Abi Talib (ra) has said in one of his poetic verses:

له ملك ينادي كل يوم لدوا للموت وابنوا للخراب

(ديوان الإمام علي بن أبي طالب، ص ٤٤)

Many an angel calls out to [remind] you every day: You give birth for [the ultimate destiny of] death and you construct buildings for [ultimate destiny of] desertion.

Keeping the foregoing explanation in perspective, a mere correction of the translation of the cited Aayah should resolve the 'problem' pointed out by you.

The Aayah implies that:

"And We have created many among the Jinn and Men for (the ultimate destiny of) Hellfire.

The Aayah informs us that a large number of Jinn and men become destined for the growling fires of hell, by virtue of their being heedless (Ghaafil). The next part of the Aayah explains the matter completely. It says about these people:

"They have hearts through which they do not understand. They have eyes through which they cannot see. They have ears through which they do not hear. They are like animals. In fact, they are even more misguided. They are the ones who are totally heedless."

Ustaz Ghamidi has commented on this in his 'Al-Bayaan' as follows:

"This sentence expresses anger and warning. It means that after a large number of men and jinn have adopted a rebellious attitude, it can be said that God has created them only for Hell. Thus, it is explained ahead why they will become the fuel of Hell. It is stated that that these people did not take any advantage of the faculties and abilities which the Almighty gave them to understand the truth. The consequence of this was that the very objective of their life became: coming into this world, spending time here and then ending up in Hell."

Similarly we can also say that many of the Jinn and Men have been created (for the ultimate destiny of) Heaven.

The Aayah does not mean that God has predestined some people to end up in hell.

Hope this helps.

Regards,

About the Author

Mushafiq Sultan


Mushafiq Sultan, born in Kashmir in 1988, has been studying world religions from his school days. In 2009 Mushafiq came across the works of Ustaz Javed Ahmad Ghamidi and since then has been highly influenced by his thought. He has an exceptional interest in world religions, their philosophies and their mutual relations. He formally joined Al-Mawrid in 2016 as Assistant Fellow (Honorary). Presently, he is in charge of Al-Mawrid’s query service. In 2016, he published his first book ‘Muhammad (sws) in the Bible- An Exposition on Isaiah 42’. He has written articles on Islam, Christianity and Hinduism. He has also translated several articles of Javed Ahmad Ghamidi into Hindi.

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