Imam Ibn AlQayyim was asked about the description of Paradise and the delights that it contains. His answer is one that takes you into an imaginative over drive. Wallahi its like you just don’t want him to stop describing it.
“And if you ask about its ground and its soil, then it is of musk and saffron.
And if you ask about its roof, then it is the Throne of the Most Merciful.
And if you ask about its rocks, then they are pearls and jewels.
And if you ask about its buildings, then they are made of bricks of gold and silver.
And if you ask about its trees, then it does not contain a single tree except that its trunk is made of gold and silver.
And if you ask about its fruits, then they are softer than butter and sweeter than honey.
And if you ask about its leaves, then they are softer than the softest cloth.
And if you ask about its rivers, then there are rivers of milk who’s taste does not change, and rivers of wine that is delicious to those who drink it, and rivers of honey that is pure, and rivers of water that is fresh.
And if you ask about their food, then it is fruits from whatever they will choose, and the meat of whatever birds they desire.
And if you ask about their drink, then it is Tasneem, ginger, and Kaafoor.
And if you ask about their drinking cups, then they are crystal-clear and made of gold and silver.
And if you ask about its shade, then a fast rider would ride in the shade of one of its trees for a hundred years and not escape it.
And if you ask about its vastness, then the lowest of its people would have within his kingdom and walls and palaces and gardens the distance that would be travelled in a thousand years.
And if you ask about its tents and encampments, then one tent is like a concealed pearl that is sixty miles long.
And if you ask about its towers, then they are rooms above rooms in buildings that have rivers running underneath them.
And if you ask about how far it reaches into the sky, then look at the shining star that is visible, as well as those that are far in the heavens that the eyesight cannot possibly reach.
And if you ask about the clothing of its inhabitants, then they are of silk and gold.
And if you ask about its beds, then its blankets are of the finest silk laid out in the highest of its levels.
And if you ask about the faces of its inhabitants and their beauty, then they are like the image of the Moon.
And if you ask about their age, then they are young ones of 33 years in the image of Adam, the father of humanity.
And if you ask about what they will be hearing, then it is the singing of their wives from among the Hoor al-‘Ayn, and better than that are the voices of the Angels and the Prophets, and better than that is the Speech of the Lord of the Worlds.
And if you ask about their servants, then they are young boys of everlasting youth who resemble scattered pearls.
And if you ask about their brides and wives, then they are young and full-breasted and have had the liquid of youth flow through their limbs; the Sun runs along the beauty of her face if she shows it, light shines from between her teeth if she smiles; if you meet her love, then say whatever you want regarding the joining of two lights; he sees his face in the roundness of her cheek as if he is looking into a polished mirror, and he sees the brightness from behind her muscles and bones; if she were to be unleashed upon the World, she would fill what is between the Heavens and the Earth with a beautiful wind, and the mouths of the creation would glorify, praise, and exclaim greatness, and everything between the East and the West would be adorned for her, and every eye would be shut from everything but her, and the light of the Sun would be outshone just as the light of the Sun outshines the light of the stars, and everyone on the face of the Earth would believe in the Ever-Living, the One who Sustains and Protects all the exists. (The scholars mention that Allah does not explicitly mention what the women will receive as per the adab of the speech of Allah, but it is something that fulfills all their desires in any way that they can think of as its a promise that Allah himself promises of fulfilling and the result of that would be nothing short of perfection. You can read Dr.Farhat Hashmi’s answer on this here)
And the covering on her head is better than the World and all that is in it, and she does not increase with age except in beauty; free from an umbilical cord, childbirth and menses, and pure of mucous, saliva, urine and other filthy things; her youth never fades, her clothing is never worn out, no garment can be created that matches her beauty, and no one who is with her can ever become bored; her attention is restricted to her husband, so she desires none but him, just as his attention is restricted to her so she is the sole object of his desire, and he is with her in utmost safety and security, as none has touched her before of either humans or Jinn.
And if you ask about the Day of Increase (in reward) and the visit of the all-Mighty, all-Wise, and the sight of His Face – free from any resemblance or likeness to anything – as you see the Sun in the middle of the day and the full Moon on a cloudless night, then listen on the day that the caller will call: ‘O People of Paradise! Your Lord – Blessed and Exalted – requests you to visit Him, so come to visit Him!’ So they will say: ‘We hear and obey!’
Until, when they finally reach the wide valley where they will all meet – and none of them will turn down the request of the caller – the Lord – Blessed and Exalted – will order His Chair to be brought there. Then, pulpits of light will emerge, as well as pulpits of pearls, gemstone, gold, and silver. The lowest of them in rank will sit on sheets of musk, and will not see what those who are on the chairs above them are given. When they are comfortable where they are sitting and are secure in their places, and the caller calls: ‘O People of Paradise! You have an appointment with Allah in which He wishes to reward you!’ So they will say: ‘And what is that reward? Has He not already made our faces bright, made our scales heavy, entered us into Paradise, and pushed us away from the Fire?’
And when they are like that, all of a sudden a light shines that encompasses all of Paradise. So, they raise their heads, and, behold: the Compeller – Exalted is He, and Holy are His Names – has come to them from above them and majestified them and said: ‘O People of Paradise! Peace be upon you!’ So, this greeting will not be responded to with anything better than: ‘O Allah! You are Peace, and from You is Peace! Blessed are You, O possessor of Majesty and Honor!’ So the Lord – Blessed and Exalted – will laugh to them and say: ‘O People of Paradise! Where are those who used to obey Me without having ever seen Me? This is the Day of Increase!’
So, they will all give the same response: ‘We are pleased, so be pleased with us!’ So, He will say: ‘O People of Paradise! If I were not pleased with you, I would not have made you inhabitants of My Paradise! So, ask of Me!’ So, they will all give the same response: ‘Show us your Face so that we may look at it!’ So, the Lord – Mighty and Majestic – will remove his covering and will majestify them and will cover them with His Light, which, if Allah – the Exalted – had not Willed not to burn them, would have burned them.
And there will not remain a single person in this gathering except that his Lord – the Exalted – will speak to him and say: ‘Do you remember the day that you did this and that?’ and He will remind him of some of his bad deeds in the Worldy life, so he will say: ‘O Lord! Will you not forgive me?’ So, He will say: ‘Of course! You have not reached this position of yours (in Paradise) except by my forgiveness.’
So, how sweet is this speech to the ears, and how cooled are the righteous eyes by the glance at His Noble Face in the Afterlife…
Some faces that Day will be shining and radiant, looking at their Lord… [Surah Al-Qiyamah]
- Haadi al-Arwaah ilaa Bilaad il-Afraah by Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim
If this does not motivate us to do good, then I highly doubt, actually I’m pretty darn sure that nothing will motivate us. Its time for us to wake up from our slumber and work on our promise to Allah so that he admits us to his Paradise and saves us from his punishment of An-Naar, the hell-fire for the failures. At times let your imagination run wild, think of what all you can do and get in Jannah. When I was young frankly it used to be mountains of Ice-cream with chocolate rivers running by its sides, well yeah it happens.
As I moved forward just the mere possibilities of what could happen was so staggering that I needed a chair to sit down. Imagine sitting at the feet of our beloved Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم, being close to him, I can’t even think of what to ask him right now. Maybe be more focused on catching the sweat of musk that falls from his brow that would rival the perfumes of Jannah.
There’s one small nugget that has always stood out from the Seerah for me. If we notice, the shahada we say, “I bear witness that there is no deity worthy of being worshiped except for Allah, and Muhammad is the last and final Messenger of Allah.” Compare that to what the sahaba said, “I bear witness that there is no deity worthy of being worshiped except for Allah, and YOU are the last and final Messenger of Allah.”. Ya Salaam! Just imagine seeing into that face full of nur and proclaiming the shahada.
Imagine walking with Sulayman عليه السلام listening to him talk about his “One of a kind” Kingdom.
Imagine sitting beside Musa عليه السلام listening about the mighty day of speech on Mount Sinai and the parting of the Red Sea.
Imagine meeting Isa عليه السلام and him marvelling at how he was taken up to Jannah alive and then sent back to Earth again.
Imagine sitting with Ibrahim عليه السلام leaning against the walls of Baitul Ma’amoor and listening to him narrate his journey of finding the One true God. May Allah grant us that immense honour.
Imagine witnessing Abu Bakr رضي الله عنه and the bond he has with Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم.
Imagine being in the mighty company of the sword of Allah, Khalid Ibn Waleed رضي الله عنه and him teaching you sword fighting.
Imagine sitting at the feet of the mueddhin of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم ,Bilal Ibn Rabah رضي الله عنه and listening him call the adhan to prayer.
Imagine being with Umar Al Faruq رضي الله عنه, just that very though sends a shiver down my spine, its THE Umar Ibn AlKhattab ya’anee!
Imagine being with the leaders of the youth of paradise, Hasan and Hussain رضي الله عنهم sharing smiles and fun all around.
Imagine listening to the Mother of the Believers Khadijah رضي الله عنها, telling how she met our Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم the very first time.
Imagine listening to the Mother of the Believers Aisha رضي الله عنها, narrating stories to the kids of Jannah.
Imagine meeting Imam Malik wearing musk of Jannah so strong that when he passes a path on his way to meet the other Imams of Sunnah, we can tell Imam Malik just passed through.
Imagine joining Hadith masters like Imam Bukhari, Imam Muslim and Seerah masters like Ibn Hisham, Imam Tabarani, Imam Ibn Katheer and setting out together to find the stories of the other Prophet and Messengers of Allah whom we know not of, from the very people themselves. Ya Salaam! May Allah be pleased with them all.
You could even meet the elders of your family and ask them if what your parents told you happened “back in their time” was actually how it happened or not. (May Allah forgive all our deceased)
By Allah my and your list of what we want to do or meet in Janah will go on and on. But the question here actually is, am I worth enough to even stand beside them,let alone be with them in Jannah, the answer is NO, but am I at least trying to give my maximum efforts to emulate them as they followed the path of Allah. That is a question every person has to answer for themselves.
If you need any more motivation, one of the salaf was asked what/why they strived for in Jannah? He replied, “In it is Rasul Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم”
If you don’t find me in Jannah ask for me…..