Monday, August 10, 2015

Unveiling the Hoor al-Ayn (Part 1)

Originally published here for AlJumuah Magazine.

{… And wide-eyed beauties [Ḥûr În] to wed, who look as though they were well-preserved pearls.} [Surat Al-Wâqi'ah, 56:22-23]
There are few âyât which trigger as much emotional turmoil as those describing the Ḥûr Al-În: those otherworldly women created to spend eternity in Paradise, without ever stepping foot in the Dunya.
The Quran describes these women in detail alongside the other pleasures of Jannah. And while many Muslim men exult in these verses and make a point of repeating and emphasizing them, many Muslim women find them to be a source of discomfort and even emotional pain.
It is all too easy for others to respond with, “You must accept the Quran and be content with the Words of Allah.” While this may sound correct theoretically – after all, every believer is obliged to accept the Divine Revelation as being the ultimate source of truth, justice, and wisdom – this approach does not address human reality. It is human nature to question, and indeed, the Quran itself recognizes this, responds to this, and many times even encourages an inquisitive spirit. However, the Quran and Sunnah also present a method of responding to such questions with emotional depth as well as facts.
Unfortunately, there tends to be a callous attitude when it comes to discussing the Ḥûr Al-În and especially in responding to the concerns that women express regarding them. Rather than taking the time to understand why so many women feel uncomfortable, the standard answer is often one of rebuke. ‘Worry about getting into Jannah yourself,’ some retort; ‘Be good to your husband, and you will be better than the Hûr,’ others say.
All of these answers, however, completely miss the point and do little (if anything) to provide the reassurance that women seek.
Human Women vs. Al–Hûr Al-‘În
Many discussions regarding the Ḥûr Al-În are framed in such a way as to present them as rivals or even enemies to believing human women. It is no wonder, then, that some Muslim women feel antagonistic towards them and question just how ‘perfect’ Jannah is.
Whether classical scholars or modern-day imams, there is a clear focus on describing the Ḥûr Al-În in detail – often disproportionately in comparison to the many, many other rewards and features of Jannah that are mentioned in the Quran and Sunnah. From the opalescence of their skin to their large, dark eyes, their virginity and their ample bosoms, men in general are very enthusiastic when talking about the Ḥûr. Unfortunately, they also phrase these descriptions in contrast to human women. One common sentiment is that the Ḥûr are ‘better’ than human women because they don’t experience ‘dirty’ bodily functions such as urinating, excreting, menstruating, child-birthing, and so on.
Another way that the Ḥûr are pitted against human women is as a threat. There are men who will deliberately quote the following ḥadîth as a means of emotionally and spiritually blackmailing their wives:
No woman annoys her husband (without legitimate reason) in this world except that his wife among the Ḥûr Al-În said: ‘Do not annoy him, may Allah destroy you; he is only like a guest with you, soon he will part from you for us.’ (Tirmidhi and Ibn Mâjah)
While the intent of this ḥadîth was as a deterrent against excessive marital discord, it is largely misused to make Muslim women feel inferior. Though the Arabic phrasing of the du'â’ they invoke is quite harsh, it is a turn of phrase found in other Arabic expressions that are commonly used, such as “May your mother be bereft of you,” “May your nose be rubbed in the dust,” and so on. Such phrases are often lost in translation, and misused inappropriately.
Furthermore, discussions about the Ḥûr are inescapably linked to the topic of polygamy – which in turn has, in general, been spoken about, taught, and practiced in a less than ideal manner. Due to the lack of positive frameworks and references for earthly polygamy, it is no surprise that the idea of polygamy in Paradise is met with similar resistance. When polygamy is so often used as a tool to oppress women and to deprive them of their rights, while at the same time accusing women of not being ‘pious’ or ‘patient’ enough, we truly cannot blame such women for having such negative reactions.
In short, it is all too common to see many men purposely using the idea of the Ḥûr Al-În to manipulate women, and as a means of spiritual abuse. This is extremely disturbing when one considers the fact that Jannah was created as a reward for all believers, men and women alike. Paradise is meant to be a source of motivation, something that is looked forward to and is desired by the believers. In fact, Jannah is explicitly described as a place wherein there is no sorrow, grief, jealousy, or any type of negative emotion whatsoever.
Why, then, are some people so determined to make Jannah appear more favorable to men than to women?
For the Believing Women…
“Do women get male Hûr?” is the question asked as a retort to repeated mentions of the Ḥûr Al-¢În. “What do women get in Jannah?” The reactions to such questions tend to be predictable – “AstaghfirAllah! Women won’t want anyone other than their husbands!” “Women don’t have a desire for more men anyway.” “You’ll get jewelry!”
It is quite understandable that many women are unsatisfied with these responses. Indeed, there are those who try to actually downplay a woman’s reward in Jannah, by implying or saying outright that unlike men, women will have no sexual desires whatsoever. There are also those who say that those who were unmarried (or divorced, or whose earthly husbands did not enter Jannah) will be satisfied being alone.
However, none of these statements holds any weight whatsoever. In fact, there is an explicit ḥadîth to the contrary:
It was narrated that a group of the Companions once either boasted or discussed whether there would be more men or women in Paradise. Abû Hurairah said: “Did not Abû Al-Qâsim (the Prophet œ) say: The first group to enter Paradise will look like the moon when it is full, then those who follow them will look like the most brilliant planet in the sky. Each man among them will have two wives whose marrow can be seen beneath their flesh, and there will be no one in Paradise who is unmarried.” (Muslim, Ḥadîth No. 7147 (2834), Book of Paradise and Description of its Delights and its People)
From this ḥadîth alone, it is clear both that women will make up the majority of the inhabitants of Paradise, and that all women will be married to similar believing spouses.
In addition, the believing women are described in two other narrations:
Umm Salamah (the Prophet’s wife) narrates that she once said to the Prophet: “O RasûlAllâh, are the women of this world superior or the Ḥûrs (the houris of Paradise)?” He replied: The women of this world will have superiority over the Ḥûrs just as the outer lining of a garment has superiority over the inner lining.
Umm Salamah then asked: “O RasûlAllâh, what is the reason for this?” He answered: Because they performed Salah, fasted, and worshipped [Allah]. Allah will put light on their faces and silk on their bodies. [The human women] will be fair in complexion and will wear green clothing and yellow jewelry. Their incense-burners will be made of pearls and their combs will be of gold. They will say: ‘We are the women who will stay forever and we will never die. We are the women who will always remain in comfort and we will never undergo difficulty. We are the women who will stay and we will never leave. Listen, we are happy women and we will never become sad. Glad tidings to those men for whom we are and who are for us!’ (Ṭabarâni)
Abû Hurairah narrated that the Prophet œ said: Every man in heaven will go to seventy-two of the creatures of Allah (houris) and two of the women of mankind. These two (human, believing) women are superior to the houris with their worshipping (good deeds) they had performed in this world. (Bayhaqi and Ṭabarâni)
Another fascinating narration exists that references an âyah from the Quran itself.
An old woman once came to the Prophet and said: “O Messenger of Allah! Supplicate for me that Allah grants me entrance into Jannah.” He replied: Mother! Don’t you know that old women cannot enter Jannah? The woman began to weep, and turned to leave. The Prophet quickly told his Companions to follow her and inform her: Allah will make all the women of Jannah young virgins, for didn’t Allah say: Indeed, We have produced the women of Paradise in a [new] creation, and made them virgins, lovers and of equal age… [Surat Al-Wâqi'ah, 56:35-37] (Al-Shamâ’il Al-Muhammadiyyah)
These above texts are the most explicit regarding the status of the believing women in Jannah, and in particular, their superiority over the Ḥûr Al-În.
However, there still remains a great deal to discuss with regards to concerns that women have regarding the Ḥûr Al-¢În, and how one may try to address them. Part two of this article will, Inshâ’Allah, delve into more detail and consider various questions and responses that arise.

30 comments:

Tazzi al-Chan said...

Assalamualaikum !

This is indeed a fascinating article which succinctly explains the comparison of the Hoor of Jannah against the Believing Woman...

I remember this one scholar mentioning why do men specifically get the epic-ally described Hoor in Jannah while what a woman gets is not specified in detail. He said to the effect that: If you get a group of men from any age and told them that they could have anything they want with no restrictions and no inhibitions...they would say "A Dream Girl". That's because Allah has made the woman the no. 1 attraction to the man in this world: "Beautified for people is the love of that which they desire - of women and sons, heaped-up sums of gold and silver...." (Surah Al Imran). Its as if a man says "Give me a Hoor and I'll be happy" as a simplistic desire.
However the desires of a woman are much more refined, much more complex. If you get a group of woman of all ages and told them they could have anything, they will write something, then after a while change their minds and say "Give me back that paper, I have something better i want.." etc. Because of the various desires of woman, which are so much more refined and well thought out than men, Allah did not specifically mention a special reward for the woman of Jannah, rather He made it a general standard: "And therein is whatever the souls desire and [what] delights the eyes, and you will abide therein eternally." (Surah Zukhruf).
So the women of Jannah have the unhindered ability to wish for anything they want...which in some ways is better than have it specifically laid out to you even if it is in a pleasurable detailed description.
Wallahu A'lam.

Jazakumullah Khair for sharing this artcile. It was very well written and on point.

la lou said...

I simply cannot get my head around this. My ultimate desire is to be woth my husband and family and to be his one and only for ever. So no matter what I will recoeve (if I would go to Jannahnofcourse) it would never be my ultimate desire. I do not wish for anything else. And saying that I will not havr auch feelings in the hereafter does NOT soothe my heart. Why can't the man for once give up something. They get their ultimate desire whereas we just have ro accept that we will never ever ever be the ine and only wife/woman he loves. Even if we wpuldt be superior to the hoor he will also get another human wife who will be equal to me so how would I want to strive for Jannah?

la lou said...

I simply cannot get my head around this. My ultimate desire is to be woth my husband and family and to be his one and only for ever. So no matter what I will recoeve (if I would go to Jannahnofcourse) it would never be my ultimate desire. I do not wish for anything else. And saying that I will not havr auch feelings in the hereafter does NOT soothe my heart. Why can't the man for once give up something. They get their ultimate desire whereas we just have ro accept that we will never ever ever be the ine and only wife/woman he loves. Even if we wpuldt be superior to the hoor he will also get another human wife who will be equal to me so how would I want to strive for Jannah?

Anonymous said...

The Hur is meant to be a positive motivating factor for men not a put down for women. I think some women need to look at the bigger picture. A man can love more than one women (in an honest way) in the way that a women can love more than one child.

Anonymous said...

If you look carefully at the Quranic verse, it says 'therein', meaning its talking you get what you want in context of Jannah. Our desires on Jannah will not really be the same.

You cannot desire homosexuality or have sex with women you are not married to in Jannah, because Jannah is pure and free of immoral desires.

Anonymous said...

Believe me Allah created special white beautiful male servants for his righteous women servants too. I know it's also a women desire they also want beautiful man to sex with them to touch them to give them love I like it when my husband smiles on me when sees me and it's wonderful to hear that the male houris will just always see me with a beautiful smile waahhh!
Insha Allah the beautiful houris males will just see their wife and will not see any other women when a women enters in jannah and her husband is busy in undressing countless houris then she will get some handsome male servants named "galiban" who will sex with the man's worldly wife who is 100 times more beautiful than naked virgins (Houris) so it happens they touches the worldly men's wife when the man go to hoor for sex.

Muhammed Ali said...

Men and Women of paradise will be wives/husbands of their choice. This includes the choice to be with your wordly wife/husband. Incase if the man goes to Jannah and his wife to hell then he will be married to Hoor from paradise. If man goes to hell and wife to Jannah then the wife will get married to male-Hoor of paradise. If both end up in paradise, then both have to agreed to be married to each other.

Muslim women need not to be doggy-femenist, Salafi-femenist or anything to have her concerns addressed. This Femenist bullshit is nothing but following the footsteps of the jews/christians. I have seen Muslim femenist, Muslim porn star, now i am waiting to know about salafi porn star and it will complete my knowledge.

Anonymous said...

whats next? salafi athiest?

Anonymous said...

im sorry to break your heart, but women will not get any galibans, its just they we were created, men can have many women, but women only get one man which is sufficient for them

Anonymous said...

To the commentator above: you have no proof of this. In fact people much more knowledgable than you disagree with what you've said. Stay silent on things you do not know about, especially if your purpose in saying them is to hurt someone else.

Shinaz said...

Sooooo where's part 2?

Syed Kamran said...

As per a authentic hadith, The righteous woman of this world will be more beautiful and much better than the Hur al Aiyn bcoz these woman prayed salah, kept fasting, read Quran,etc.! So obviously man would prefer to spend more time with her and not hur al aiyn. So women shouldn't worry about Hur al aiyn I feel.

Courtney Mohammed said...

I agree sister....I am a convert and this has often made me reconsider my decision.

Courtney Mohammed said...

I agree sister....I am a convert and this has often made me reconsider my decision.

Unknown said...

The fact that man's desires will without question cause hurt and impede the ability of women to have their desires shows a continued masogany and a complete indifference towards woman. No woman wants to share her husband with another woman and then watch him take off and have sex with dozens of gorgeous virgins. This is not paradise

lb said...

It's funny when the imam or scholar making a guess about women super complicated about what they want in jannah. I'm a woman myself, I want to get multiple husbands if I can choose. Why they think of women don't want hur too? Have the imam or scholar really make a call for each of all women and men groups to choose? Prove it. Why I never have to be asked that? Are these imam just guessing ? Or they think what they think about all women? is it really true that the answer for all the groups? Or are they just made up stories? When they started making those questions to the group?

lb said...

My male friends can't even love more than one woman. And some of the women including myself can love more than one man. I'm confuse!! So don't make assumption about every human being are the same

lb said...

How do u know? Have u been to heaven? What make u confident that women don't get hurs too? Or someone just told u that?

lb said...

Hur al ayn has no gender description in jannah. Is applicable for both man n woman. Off course men translate it to fair female cuz it's good for them. They don't want to translate as male fairs cuz they would get scare to think of his wife get hurs. What about u bcome the king of hurs and don't worry ur wife only prefer spend time than to her male hurs

lb said...

Ur more beautiful than man hurs so don't worry if ur wife spending time and having fun with male hurs. Cuz ur king of hurs

Seri Ali said...

Answers from our muslim male scholars about hoor made me so depressed that I cried every night after thinking about hoors in jannah. Ofcourse God will not discriminate He is perfect . He love us with no gender discrimination. He would not make a thing of jannah attractive for men but depressing for women. Obvisouly InshaaAllah there would b male hoors too. Personaly I am attracted to every beautiful guy so why wont i desire many beautiful husbands in jannah. If there is no concept of women attraction towards other male rather than his husband than why girls cut their fingers after seeing the beauty of hazrat yousaf a.s? If girls make compromises and loyal to their husbands than it doesn't mean that they dont have these kind of desires.

Sarah Alam said...

Also lets not overlook that in addition to the fact that most women including me feel a bit insecure from the idea of sharing their husbands with another woman without our consent, what's even WORSE is the fact that according to the regarding belief (whether true or false[<- which I'm pretty sure it is]) the poor Hoor Al Ayn will be created soley for the purpose of fulfilling a mans sexual desires-which is deeply saddening considering that they are also women just like us, will not be asked whether she actually WANTS to marry the man she is will be assigned to, will not be given the freedom to leave their adobes, and do not have the ability to feel some very important emotions and desires for themselves such as the realization and feeling of sexual abuse. And I COMPLETELY agree, the way that some imams/scholars have described the physical appearance of the Hoor Al Ayn is highly inappropriate and filth ridden, in fact classified as open pornography. PS, THE AUTHORS OF SUCH RELATED ARTICLES ARE PRACTICING FITNAAA!! THEY ARE IN SYNC WITH SATAN, NOT ALLAH! Satan wants to misguide Allahs female servants because he thinks we are vulnerable, but we're not Allah has made us strong, hence we will not give in to Satans plans. There is no way Allah will give a believer something by taking away something essential from another believer (permanently erase his/her ability to feeling certain emotions like jealousy that is). And I don't care if anyone thinks I'm stupid, but I truly believe that if it is wrong for a woman to feel jealous over her husband for being with another woman especially if she was never okay with it to begin, e.g. she never gave him consent to marry her or worse, no marriage took place between her husband and the other woman in the first place, then it is also wrong, even more wrong in fact, for a husband to be with another woman besides his wife wilst the wife is unhappy with it. And whoever said that in Jannah Allah will remove the envy of women for her husbands and give men 100x more sexual desire and sexual power is really stupid in his head because this is straight up just oppressive at its finest, which Allah can never do because a man and a woman are both equal in in the eyes of Allah and He is just and equal with both.

Anonymous said...

Hi sist. I find it funny when men told us no jealousy. Seriously is this verse to work only " women" if Allah remove jealousy,ill feeling, hatred. Does Allah say it to ONLY women? Or Allah say it in GENERAL and it for both gender? Hahaha. Do u just think jealousy only because see men with other women? Nooo. Jelousy can be many things. I'll give example. Jealousy when parent treat more good to younger bro than big bro. Jealosy cz he/ she clever but we stupid. Jealousy cz Allah create she/he more beautiful/ handsome than us. Because he/ she more rich than us. Thats kind of jealousy/ ill feeling. How bout hatred? I hate somebody cz he/ she treat me unjust. So this is general means. No jealous cz Allah will treat us all FAIRLY = equal ! The equal is we all get what we all desire ! Thats it. Idc if I am called idiot or stupid. But I believe what Allah said. No matter what. Why imaam or scholars or that some men use this ayaah for make women kept silent and dont ask anything just accept? Wheres u believe in Allah when Allah said give what men and women desire? Did Imam know women more than Allah? So where that knowledge bout we only need gold ? Etc? Seriously not all women greedy bout it. No. Its not about that. We ask Allah justice and I believe Allah's word. If Allah said Allah will give what I want then let it be. If I married to man and my husband wanna hooris let him have them but I will ask Allah to divorce me with him and marry with the mr right that only accept me. Simple right? If he chose hoors al aiyn then I can chose whats the best for mine in paradise . He is not the only one dwellers in paradise after all. No hatred no jealousy ofc..why I need to jealous when i get what i desire? No hatred ofc Why i neeed to hate him when i got mine? So that verse seem everything sound possible and fair. If Allah promise. Allah will kept promise. Dont make men'w word even it imam make u doubt Allah
.no. Allah love us. Sist and bro. Listen. No parents will happy when their children sad. No. Do u think parents will happy to see their children suffer in marriage? Thats parent. How bout our creator? Our creator love us more more more and more than our parents love us ! Just believe Allah ! Why Allah sent messanger if Allah doesnt care about us ! Allah want us to be saved and Allah want the best for us ! Dont compare what we get in this world with what we get in paradise.. dont forget when Allah said in qur'an " we will test you with something of fear and hunger and lost of wealth and live and fruits but give tiding to patient." Do u see it? Fear ! Thats what we fear..what women fear the most? If we truly believe Allah we must fight our fear and believe that Allah Love us ! ALLAH never want us suffer. Keep patience sist. Jannah is the best reward.

BmJointVenture said...

Dear sisters, if Almighty Allah (SWT) bless you with Jannah then you must be obliged to him (SWT) rather than thinking about your husbands' number of wives. Please be careful about your comments because Almighty Allah (SWT) knows what you're saying. Please be careful and fear Almighty Allah (SWT).

BmJointVenture said...

Please strive for Jannah rather than thinking about unnecessary things and try your best to make Almighty Allah (SWT) happy.

Laila Blanchard musical said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

To bro n sis

Most ignorance men like to say why women like to complain about jannah, no wonder majority of hell full of women. Look what happen if the other way around, husbands in jannah will share their wives with other handsome hurs (males). How they feel? Don't worry they won't get jealous cuz they will b the king of all the hours and they will b happy cuz being the king of all hurs (males). Some of said don't worry so much or dont hate the men if they get hurs (females). Amusingly, the people who worry so much about comparison of jannah for men and women is the males scholars. Scholars believed so much from different Hadiths about jannah for women. For example, They say if a woman died single and going to jannah and she will b marry with a man from this world and her man will get extra other wives from the earth and from female hurs. If a woman married 4 times n divorced and she died, she will b remarried with the last man. Some said if the woman died have 4 husbands, without divorced cuz her husbands died, she only can choose from all 4 of the husbands. She only can have one. She can only choose one best character only. Lol. Also that woman has to share her husband with other women and hurs (female). LMAO

But when it comes to man jannah. If a man married 4 times bcuez his wife died first, simple he keeps all his wives in jannah, plus extra hurs (females). If aman died and divorce 4 times, still he gets to keep all his 4 wives in jannah plus extra hurs. If a man died single, a man will b marry with women from the earth and extra hurs (female). LOL.

Now u see the comparison of jannah for men n women? That's wht the scholars said. Of course it's so absurd. Now u see who more worry so much about jannah. The MEN. Until the control about what women get in jannah.

Just imagine this, I have a famiy female member that is lesbian. She never even do zina. She keeps struggling herself away from zina all her life because she knows Allah testing her. So according to scholars, if she died single, she will b cure n force to marry with a man from Earth and get to share with others female hurs. Do u y'all think is fair for her?
First of all, it's not what she wants after she died and God has to force her to b with man? Imagine if not she wants in jannah. Imagine she wants to b man in jannah. There u go, she has to b forced again. So my opinions are jannah is only for men fantasy not for women

Anonymous said...

I fix it above statement. Imagine she doesn't want to b with man in jannah, instead she wants Allah to changed her to b man, there u go, she has to b forced marry with man. She doesn't even like man from the first place but her reward is to b force being with man n share also lol

Anonymous said...

FUCK Galibans them green ugly mothafockas i will torture their stinky eyshes in jannah, with my boy bk201 u watch init bled.i will make them to power my i 9 32848327423 core processeor galiban blood cooling, galiban display made from their eyes, while they see through a cathode ray burning their eyelids stinky yutes. Galibans will get raped by my pet dinosaurs, t rex with a 800 ft cock, with barbed wire condom and lava cum to burn their ayshes.

terance glo said...

Assalamu alaikum. Brothers and sisters mainly. Please put your trust in Allah swt over certain things when it comes to these topics. It is a deception from shaitan to believe that what you have vs what men will have will not be fair. A pat of having trust in Allah swt is knowing that if Allah swt has told us that BOTH men and Women will be happy then please do not earn the displeasure of Allah swt by causing fitnah posting topics like this which only bring confusion and deviation. I understand that honestly no one wants to think of their spouse having "multiple" spouses or whatever but this is simply because like we are constantly reminded. This life is play and amusement. Our beloved prophet sws would not lie to us when he says that everyone will be Happy in Jannah. And he sws has already explained that all bad feelings will be removed because its Jannah!<3 and of course if you still are not satisfied then you in sha Allah if you make it to Jannah then you can discuss this with Allah swt instead of posting a summary about it on the internet which honestly will not change the rewards of Jannah but will cause fitnah as I stated earlier. after all if any of you can remember the hadith about the man who lived a life of hardship and trials to the point that no one was tested more then him will be dipped in Jannah and when he comes out he will be asked did he experience any hardship , and he will say he never experienced any hardship ever? Just a moment if being dipped into jannah will make him forget every hardship he went through in this dunya and we have Muslims who still are making themselves suffer over things like what other people will get in jannah when our prophet sws himself and Allah swt have already promised us that everyone will be happy and no one will suffer the slightest discomfort? Really brothers and sisters just put in the work and Let Allah swt do the rest .
Jazakallah khair.