Alice Visits a Mosque to Learn About Judgement Day
The Beginning of a Tortured Soul's Journey
The stage is dark except for a spotlight on a minbar, a pulpit in a mosque, where an imam (prayer leader) is reciting verses from the Koran, beginning with the customary seven revelations from the surah i.e. chapter The Opening, followed by revealed truths (immutable facts revealed to a mortal by a god) about Judgement Day when he is interrupted by a visitor who has entered the mosque.
Imam: 1:1 In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful,
1:2 Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds,
1:3 The Compassionate, the Merciful,
1:4 Master of the Day of Judgement,
1:5 Only You do we worship, and only You do we implore for help.
1:6. Lead us to the right path,
1:7 The path of those You have favoured. Not those who have incurred Your wrath or have gone astray.
80:33 Then, when the Deafening Blast shall sound;
80:34 On the Day when man shall run away from his brother,
80:35 His mother and his father,
80:36 His consort and his sons.
80:37 To every one of them on that Day is a business sufficing him.
80:38 Some faces on that Day, will be bright,
80:39 Laughing and joyful;
80:40 And other faces, on that Day, will be covered with dust,
80:41 Enveloped in smoke.
80:42 Those are the unbelievers, the profligate.
The sound of a soft, apprehensive “hello” is heard. A second spotlight reveals a young woman wearing a white robe and a red hoody.
Imam: Who are you, and what are you doing here? I do not see a man with you. What are you doing here by yourself young lady?
Alice: I have come here to learn about Judgement Day.
Imam: You don’t know about Judgement Day. You are not a believer. Get out of here immediately! Allah said:
9:17 The unbelievers should not enter Allah’s Mosques bearing witness thereby against themselves that they are unbelievers. The works of those are vain and in the Fire they will abide forever.
Alice: A friend who knows the Koran very well told me that Allah also said:
9:6 And if any one of the idolaters should seek refuge with you, give him refuge, so that he may hear the Word of Allah; then convey him to his place of security. That is because they are a people who do not know.
The imam is somewhat taken aback by Alice’s response.
Imam: You don’t look like an idolater?
Alice: What does an idolater look like?
Imam: Never mind. What is it you want to know about Judgement Day?
Imam: Everything! How dare you presume that I have the time to tell you about Judgement Day, you, a female and an unbeliever who dares enter Allah’s Mosque without first removing her shoes?
Alice: I am so sorry, I did not know [bends down to remove her shoes, and in a defensive tone], but I did wear a scarf – I mean a hood – and I am not an unbeliever, I believe in the same god you do – I think – and I sort of believe in a Judgement Day.
Imam: You “think”, and you “sort of believe” in a Judgement Day. You are no believer! Believing in a Judgement Day is the fifth most important belief, just after believing in the one and only God, His angels, the revealed books of the Prophets and the Prophets themselves. It is all in the Holy Koran, the greatest book on earth and in the heavens, and in which a believer believes with certainty. Allah said:
45:20 This (Qur’an) is an illumination for mankind, a guidance and mercy unto a people who believe with certainty.
Alice: The Bible does not go on and on about Judgement Day, which is not the case of the Koran, I am told. Perhaps, if I knew more about Judgement Day, I would believe with certainty.
Imam: Insolent girl! Allah does not go on and on about Judgement Day. If He reveals so much, and warns so much in His Koran, it is because He wants to spare the unbelievers the scourge of His Fire by scaring them into believing, and to keep the believers on the straight and narrow path to Paradise. If more unbelievers knew what Allah has in store for them on Judgement Day, they would flee to Islam in terror!
Alice: I am not afraid of being scared into believing.
Imam: You should be. Most unbelievers cannot handle the truth, which is why Allah has placed a seal upon their hearts and hearing and made them almost blind to It. Allah said:
2:6 Those who have disbelieved, whether you warn them or not, they will not believe.
2:7 Allah has sealed their hearts and their hearing; their sight is dimmed and a terrible punishment awaits them.
Alice: I am willing to give truth a chance.
Imam: Are you? Really! Allah in revelation 12:28 warned Joseph, son of Jacob, about a “woman’s guile” when the wife of his Egyptian host tried to have her way with him, ripping his shirt from behind in the process, which for Allah was a clear indication of her intention, even if she pretended otherwise. Allah said:
12:28 When he (the husband) saw that his (Joseph’s) shirt was torn from behind, he said: “This is part of your guile, you women. Your guile is indeed very great. If this is part of your guile, woman, you WILL burn in Hell; and may Allah forgive me if I have let myself be seduced by your guile.
Ask your first question.
Alice: I have not come here to seduce you.
Imam: You have been warned. What is it you want to know, and be quick about it, I don't have all day?
Alice: Sorry ... what is Judgement Day exactly?
Imam: Judgement Day is the Day when Allah will cause all who are alive to die, and then will bring them back to life to be judged, along with everyone who ever lived.
Alice: Just like in the Bible.
Imam: NO. The Bible got it almost right. Judgement Day in the Koran is the second judgement.
Alice: The second Judgement!!! When was the first?
Imam: In Islamic Traditions, which are words and actions which can usually be traced to what the Prophet Muhammad, the peace and blessings of God be upon him, said or did, everyone will be judged shortly after being visited by ‘Izra’il, the angel of death. Forty days before a person dies a leaf with the soon-to-be-deceased’s name on it falls from a tree in Paradise just beneath Allah’s throne. ‘Izra’il picks it up and schedules a pick-up forty days hence.
Alice: Why forty days?
Imam: Ten, thirty, forty days, what does it matter. What is important is that the Prophet, the peace and blessings of God be upon him, said that when ‘Izra’il knocks on the door, even after he warned people about his coming, they will not recognize him and will ask him: “Who are you?”
Alice: So, the angel of death is not dressed in a black cloak and hood and carrying a sickle; which is a dead giveaway. Dead giveaway, get it?
Imam: Yes, I get it. The grim reaper, the person to whom you are referring, is just a myth. ‘Izra’il is not a myth!
Alice: Of course. So the angel of death is the last person a living person will see?
Imam: No! That honour is reserved for the two angels who have been patiently and anonymously recording a person's good and bad deeds. These two angels, in the blink of an eye, will present the soon-to-be-deceased with their lifetime of good and bad deeds, after which, the person whose name is on the leaf-of-record dies, but not his thinking, seeing, able-to-feel-pain soul which will sink into the ground where they passed away, but not before ‘Izra’il has finished extracting it from the still warm body, drawing it out like rough cotton through the eye sockets.
Imam: Death, like birth, is meant to be a painful transition. This painful procedure will give Satan one last chance to tempt a believer in agony to come over to the dark side by offering some relief from the pain caused by what the soft-hearted may consider an appalling soul extraction method.
Alice: And Allah will allow ‘Izra’il to do this to people, to women and children who have been loyal to Him all their lives.
Imam: The children of true believers are raised to endure discomfort. On the threshold of Paradise, they will be able to stand the pain and not accept Satan’s offer to reduce it, thereby avoiding a U-turn to Hell on Judgement Day. It is just one more way the Wise and Compassionate tests our faith to make sure we are worthy of His Paradise.