JAHANNAM - جَهَنَّم
The proper noun of the fire which is a torment place in the âkhirah. The place where people, who accept the created things like nature and causes as Ilah instead of Allah and who become servants and slaves to their desires or other people and creatures instead of Allah, will be punished by the justice of Allah. All Prophets, ‘ulamâ and awliyâ, who follow the Prophets, informed us about the existence of Jahannam and Allah’s justice requires the existence of it.
In general, the word Jahannam expresses any kind of torment in the âkhirah. Particularly it expresses the first degree of Jahannam.
Jahannam is expressed in the Qur’an with different words. (15:44) The seven well-known names of Jahannam are as follows:
1: Jahannam جَهَنَّم The first degree of the torment of Jahannam. (2:206)
2: Ladhâ لَظٰى Jahannam with the severe flame. (70:15) (92:14)
3: Hudamah حُطَمَةِ Jahannam that swallows by riving and comminution. (104:4-8)
4: Sa‘îr سَّع۪ير Inflamed Jahannam. (81:12) (35:6) (4:55) (42:7)
5: Saqar سَقَر Roasting and engulfing Jahannam. (54:48) (74:26-31-42)
6: Jahîm جَح۪يمِ (2:119) (26:91) (37:23-55-64) (40:07) (81:12)
7: Hâwiyah هَاوِيَة “dark as-asfal” the lowest degree of Jahannam. (101:9-11) (4:145)
Other than these degrees there are different places and kinds for torment in Jahannam. Ghayyâ غَيًّاۙ (19:59), Wayl وَيْل (38:27), As-samûm السَّمُومِ (52:27) (56:42), Dâr ul-khuld دَارُ الْخُلْد (41:28), Dâr ul-bawâr دَارَالْبَوَار (14:28)
Where is Jahannam?
The Answer: قُلْ اِنَّمَا الْعِلْمُ عِنْدَ اللّٰهِ ٭ لاَ يَعْلَمُ الْغَيْبَ اِلاَّ اللّٰهُ1 In some riwâyât, it is said that the place of Jahannam is beneath the earth. As we have declared in other places, through its annual movement, the globe of the earth traces a circle around an area that will be the place of the rising from the dead and assembling for judgment in the future. It means that Jahannam is beneath that annual orbit of the earth. Since it is a veiled fire without nûr, they are invisible and imperceptible. In the immense distance on which the globe of the earth travels are many creatures; they are invisible since they do not possess nûr. Like the moon loses its existence when its nûr is withdrawn, so we cannot see numerous globes and creatures without nûr although they are in front of our eyes.
There are two Jahannam: One is the Lesser and the other is the Greater. Just as the Lesser will transform into the Greater in the future and is its seed, so will it become one of its habitations in the future. The Lesser Jahannam is under the earth, that is, at its centre. The lower side of a globe is its centre. It is known in geology that for every thirty-three metres of digging, the heat mostly increases by one degree. That is to say, since the radius of the earth until the centre is around six thousand kilometres, there is a fire that contains a temperature of two hundred thousand degrees, that is, two hundred times stronger than the fire of this world conforming with the riwâyât of hadiths. This Lesser Jahannam has performed many duties of the Greater Jahannam in this world and in al-‘âlam al-barzakh; this is indicated in the hadiths. Just as in al-‘âlam al-âkhirah, the globe of the earth will pour its inhabitants into the arena of the rising from the dead and assembling for judgment, which is within its annual orbit, so will it hand over the Lesser Jahannam within it to the Greater Jahannam through the command of Allah.
Jahannam has not completely spread out at present time and developed a way entirely appropriate to its inhabitants, therefore, the saying of some of the Mu'tazilite imams "Jahannam will be created later" is mistaken and foolish. Also, in order to see and show the places of al-‘âlam al-âkhirah within the veil of the ghayb with our earthly eyes, either the universe has to be shrunk to the size of two provinces, or our eyes have to be enlarged to the size of stars so that we can see and specify their places. 2 وَالْعِلْمُ عِنْدَ اللّٰهِ , the places of al-âlam of âkhirah cannot be seen with our earthly eyes. But through the indication of certain riwâyât, the Jahannam in the âkhirah is connected with this world of us. The intense heat of summer is called مِنْ فَيْحِ جَهَنَّمَ3 That is to say, Greater Jahannam cannot be seen with the tiny and dim worldly eyes of the mind. But we can look at it through the nûr of the Name of Hakîm. It is as follows:
The Greater Jahannam beneath the earth's annual orbit has as though appointed the Lesser Jahannam at the earth's centre as its representative and made it perform some of its duties. The possession of Al-Qadîr Zuljalâl is truly extensive. Wherever the hikmah of Allah has pointed out, the Greater Jahannam settles there.
Yes, Al-Qadîr Zuljalâl and Al-Hakîm Zulkamâl, Who possesses the command of 4 كُنْ فَيَكُونُ , has tied the moon to the earth, before our eyes, with perfect hikmah and order; through the grandeour of Qoudrah and with order, He tied the earth to the sun; through the majesty of His Rubûbiyyah, He has caused the sun move together with its planets — according to one possibility — towards shams ash-shumûs5 , with a speed close to that of the annual rotation of the earth; like the electric lights of a navy, He has made the stars luminous witnesses to the sovereignty of His rubûbiyyah; it is not far from the perfect hikmah, the grandeour of qoudrah and sovereignty of rubûbiyyah of such a Zuljalâl One, Who demonstrates His sovereignty of rubûbiyyah and grandeour of qoudrah, to make the Greater Jahannam the cauldron of an electric light factory and with it to set fire to the stars of the samâ, which look to the âkhirah, and give them heat and power, that is, to give nûr to the stars from Jannah, which is the world of nûr, and send them fire and heat from Jahannam, and at the same time, to make a part of such Jahannam a dwelling place and prison for those who are to be tormented. Also, such a Fâtir Al-Hakîm, Who preserves a tree as large as a mountain in a seed the size of a finger-nail, surely, it is not far from the qoudrah and hikmah of such a Zuljalâl One to preserve the Greater Jahannam in the seed of the Lesser Jahannam which is in the heart of the globe of the earth.
In Short: Jannah and Jahannam are the two fruits of a branch of the tree of creation which stretches out and goes towards eternity by leaning. The fruits' place is at the branch's extremity. Also, they are the two results of the chain of the universe. The places of the results are the two sides of the chain. The base and heavy are on its lower side; the luminous and elevated are on its upper side. They are also the two stores of this flood of shuûn and the ma’nawî crops of the earth. As for the place of the store, according to the type of crops, the bad ones are below and the good ones are above. They are also the two pools of the flowing beings which move and wave towards eternity. As for the pool's place, it is where the flood stops and gathers. That is, the abominable and filthy ones are below (asfal) and the good and the pure ones are above (a’lâ). They are also the two places of the manifestation of beneficence and wrath, rahmah and grandeur. Places of manifestation can be everywhere. Ar-Rahmân Zuljamâl, Al-Qahhâr Zuljalâl opens His places of manifestation wherever He wishes.
As for the existence of Jannah and Jahannam, it has been proved most decisively in the Tenth, Twenty-Eighth and Twenty-Ninth Words. Here, we only say this: the existence of the fruit is as definite and certain as that of the branch; the result as the chain; the store as the crops; the pool as the river; the place of manifestation as definite and certain as the existence of rahmah and wrath.
The First Letter-Third Question