CBT Today, the magazine of the British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies, recently published a feature on the psychological effects (fear of hell and guilt) in ex-Christians. Ed is writing an article on the effects in ex-Muslims. In response, Hassan Radwan writes: ‘Hell is one of the main reasons I left Islam and it is still an issue that I keep coming back to and have made videos about it on Youtube.
‘I was a devout Muslim for 48 years and the fear of Hell is something that runs deep amongst most Muslims – though they will never admit it.
‘The Qur’an is even more graphic than the Bible about Hell. Describing the tortures awaiting unbelievers in great detail. One can barely turn a page in the Qur’an without finding a reference to Hell.
‘It is nothing more than eternal torture.
‘I still find it hard to understand why in all the years I was a Muslim I could not see the absurd and impassable contradiction between a God who calls himself (in the Qur’an) “The Most Merciful of those who show Mercy” and eternal torture.
‘I used to make excuses – as I suppose many Christians do – that it was “metaphorical” and was in some way just a symbolic description of the pain one will suffer as a result of hurting others.
‘But it’s hard to maintain such a view in light of the graphic depictions of torture – even if one takes it as a metaphor – since it clearly indicates an unimaginably long period of unbearable pain and suffering for merely failing to believe in something that is open to reasonable doubt.’
If you want to make a contribution to the piece, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can forward to Ed.