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(Masnavi Book 3: 50) The Divine Providence manifested in the creation of Hell




The wisdom of (God's) having created Hell in the world hereafter and the prison of (tribulation in) the present world to the end that they may be places of worship for the arrogant (evil-doers): Come ye willingly or unwillingly.

For in (suffering) cruelty the vile are purified; when they receive kindness, they themselves become cruel.
Therefore Hell is the mosque where they perform their devotions: a trap is the (only) fetter for a wild bird.

2985. Prison is the cloister of the thief and villain, that there he may be constantly mindful of
God.
Inasmuch as Divine worship was the object (in the creation) of mankind, Hellfire was made the place of worship for the rebellious.
Man has the power (of action) in everything, but this service (of God) has (ever) been the (final)
object of him.
I did not create the Jinn and mankind (save that they might serve Me). Recite this (text). The
(final) object of the world is naught but Divine worship.
Though the (final) object of a book is the science (which it contains), (yet) if you make it a pillow
(to rest on), it will become (serve as) that too;

2990. But this (function of being a) pillow was not its (final) object: it (the final object) was learning and knowledge and right guidance and profit.
If you have made the sword a tent-pin, you have preferred defeat to victory.
Although the (final) object of Man is knowledge (of God) and to be rightly directed (in religion), (yet) every man has a particular place of worship.
The place where (the means whereby) the noble man worships is your treating him with
kindness; the place where (the means whereby) the vile man worships is your making him sick
(your maltreating him).
Smite the vile, that they may bow their heads; give to the noble, that they may yield (good) fruit.

2995. Necessarily God has created a mosque for each of the twain —Hell for those, and increase (of bounty) for these.
Moses built the Báb-i Saghír (the Small Gate) at Jerusalem, in order that the people tormented
(by evil passions) might lower their heads,
Because they were insolent and arrogant. Hell is (like) that Báb-i Saghír and (place of)
humiliation.

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