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In the Name of God بسم الله

Gardens of Aden

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On this blessed Friday, a reflection on one of the Holy verses of Surat Al kahf (18:31) 

أُولَٰئِكَ لَهُمْ جَنَّاتُ عَدْنٍ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهِمُ الْأَنْهَارُ يُحَلَّوْنَ فِيهَا مِنْ أَسَاوِرَ مِن ذَهَبٍ وَيَلْبَسُونَ ثِيَابًا خُضْرًا مِّن سُندُسٍ وَإِسْتَبْرَقٍ مُّتَّكِئِينَ فِيهَا عَلَى الْأَرَائِكِ ۚ نِعْمَ الثَّوَابُ وَحَسُنَتْ مُرْتَفَقًا

Do we read the word as a name of a location on earth (city of Aden, Yemen from where the word Garden of Eden was taken) - to which some people would relate back then as a magnificent place as in a wonder of the world - or as the meaning of "eternity" ? 

See here the occurrences of the word in the Qur'an


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There are ranks (درجات) in paradise (جنة). Eden is most likely among one of that rank. 

There are many ranks/degrees of paradise mentioned in Quran namely

1. جنة المأوى

2. الخلد

3. دار السلام

4. جنات النعيم 


ولكل درجات مما عملوا

(And all have degrees according to what they do)

1 hour ago, realizm said:

Do we read the word as a name of a location on earth (city of Aden, Yemen from where the word Garden of Eden was taken)

I don't think so, the place Eden come into existence prior to giving that name to any physical location on Earth. 


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23 hours ago, realizm said:

to which some people would relate back then as a magnificent place as in a wonder of the world - or as the meaning of "eternity" ? 

Salam it means eternity although as physical example it alos mentions (city of Aden, Yemen from where the word Garden of Eden was taken) in it's best eternal form because at that time it was example of paradise in Arabian peninsula which even now KSA have heavily invested in occupied parts of Yemen (city of Aden & paradises around it) as future of it's eco tourism .

The meanings of the words of the verse of Eden (Adn): (on the weight of Aql): establishment. "Eden Balmakan: Istaqar"«عدن بالمكان: استقر». Mine: place where minerals are located. It is meant in the verse of eternity and everlasting. «جَنَّاتُ عَدْنٍ» eternal (everlasting) Paradises.

Tafsir Noor ([by Iranian cleric] Mohsin Qara'ati [in Persian.])

V5 , P 167

For them are eternal gardens under which streams flow (their palaces and thrones). There they are decorated with golden bracelets and wear green clothes made of thin and thick silk, while there they are leaning on the (heavenly) thrones. What a good reward and what a good position!

"Adn" «عَدْنٍ»means residence and place. «أَساوِرَ»"Asawar" is the plural of "Aswarah"«أَسْوِرَةٌ» for bracelets, «سُنْدُسٍ»"Sundus" is for thin silk and «إِسْتَبْرَقٍ» "Istabraq" is for thick silk, and «أرائك» "Araek" is the plural of "Arika" for a royal throne that is covered with a net.

In the previous two verses, we read about the people of hell:«بِئْسَ الشَّرابُ وَ ساءَتْ مُرْتَفَقاً», what a bad drink and what a bad position, and this verse says about the people of Paradise:  «نِعْمَ الثَّوابُ وَ حَسُنَتْ مُرْتَفَقاً» , what a good reward and what a good position.

According to the fact that in heaven, every kind of clothing of any kind and color is available to the heavenly beings, but the allocation of green clothes may refer to their formal and general clothes that they adorn themselves with while leaning on their thrones.

1- The rivers of heaven also flow from under the trees«مِنْ تَحْتِهِمُ الْأَنْهارُ», also from under the palaces of heaven. «مِنْ تَحْتِهِمُ الْأَنْهارُ»

2- Beheshtian's use of jewelry shows that humans naturally love jewelry and makeup. «يُحَلَّوْنَ فِيها مِنْ أَساوِرَ»

3- Believing and following Allah's commandments and staying away from forbidden luxuries in this world is the key to attaining eternal luxuries in the hereafter.  يُحَلَّوْنَ فِيها مِنْ أَساوِرَ ......

4- Resurrection is spiritual and physical, because if it was spiritual, there would be no need for gold and silk


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13 hours ago, Ashvazdanghe said:

it alos mentions (city of Aden, Yemen from where the word Garden of Eden was taken) in it's best eternal form because at that time it was example of paradise in Arabian peninsula


That was exactly my intuition but I would like to find sources that corroborate this. 

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On 12/9/2023 at 12:48 PM, Ashvazdanghe said:

it alos mentions (city of Aden, Yemen from where the word Garden of Eden was taken) in it's best eternal form because at that time it was example of paradise in Arabian peninsula


You can find the name Eden in Bible too. There are verses in Bible which mentions that Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) has placed Adam (عليه السلام) there immediate after his creation:

"The Lord God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed." (Genesis 2:8)
"therefore the Lord God sent him out from the garden of Eden, to cultivate the ground from which he was taken." (Genesis 3:23)

Although Arabic is the language in which Quran was revealed but its addressees are not only Arabs or people of Yemen :), there are more beautiful places present on Earth which are famous as paradise on earth, we have one of that place known as "Valley of Kashmeer" in my country.  And in Arabian peninsula, there are other places too which are greater in beauty than the Adan of Yemen. 



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18 hours ago, Inspector said:

we have one of that place known as "Valley of Kashmeer" in my country.  And in Arabian peninsula, there are other places too which are greater in beauty than the Adan of Yemen. 

Salam it's  about patriotism which everyone can find a heavenly place in his country which surly "Valley of Kashmir" is a very beautiful place but we have talked about religious mentioning of  garden of Eden or Aden which an it's relation to Yemen not other places which for example which Sarandeep (The Island of Diamonds) in mountains of ceylon in current Sri lanka (India in Sunni texts)  has been mentioned  as place of descending prophet Adam (عليه السلام) which in similar fashion according to genesis  some places in west Asia have been suggested as  possible garden of Eden.


Where did Adam put his feet when he landed on Earth?

He descended in the mountains of Ceylon – or Sri Lanka – known in antiquity as Sarandeep (The Island of Diamonds).

I myself tried to climb that mountain and get to the top of it where exists, according to popular legend, the stone on which the feet of Adam (peace be upon him) when he landed on Earth from Heaven is inscribed.




The location of Eden is described in the Book of Genesis as the source of four tributaries. Various suggestions have been made for its location:[3] at the head of the Persian Gulf, in southern Mesopotamia where the Tigris and Euphrates rivers run into the sea;[4] and in Armenia.[5][6][7]




In Other Religions

In Judaism, scholars offer two versions of the Garden of Eden. One is called Lower Gan Eden and refers to a physical place. The second version is related to an ethereal concept rather than a physical one and is called the Higher Gan Eden. The second paradise is said to appear at the end of the world. A similar concept exists in rabbinic literature and is called Olam Ha Ba. This refers to a utopian place where souls go after death in the Messianic Age, a time of peace and a heavenly state on Earth.



Muhammad Darwaza, a contemporary Sunni exegete, believes that God describes afterlife places with reference to well-known places in this world. Before the promotion of Muhammad (s) to prophethood, there was a place called "Adnat" in Yemen with well-known gardens. The word transformed into "'Adn" and was deployed by the Qur'an in the description of the Heaven or one of the afterlife heavens.[15]

 Darwaza, al-Tafsīr al-ḥadīth, vol. 2, p. 335.


Garden of Eden

That the Garden of Eden might have been located in Wadi-Adhana at Marib, at Shabwa, or at some other site in the territories of Yemen and Hadramaut.



The Biblical scholars, on the other hand, believe that the Garden of Eden existed in the east, which perhaps implies east of Canaan or Palestine


Such alternate suggestions for the Garden of Eden are given hereunder:



  1. That the Garden of Eden was by the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in Iraq somewhere near Ur or where the Tigris and Euphrates join together before flowing into the Persian Gulf.
  2. That the possible site was somewhere in the Persian Gulf which has eventually been eroded by the sea and lies submerged under the sea near Iraqi borders.
  3. That the Garden of Eden was in Wadi Arar, somewhere between Hail and Euphrates in northern Arabia. The possible course of river Pishon has been suggested from Ha’il (identified as Havilah) to Jabba, to Jauf to Wadi Ubaidiyah and to Euphrates.
  4. That the Garden of Eden was on Mount Zion.
  5. That the possible site of the Garden of Eden was in Turkey from where the Tigris and Euphrates
  6. Some recent suggestions show the Garden of Eden in the United States; (a) in western Missouri, (b) in the southeast along the Florida, Georgia, and Alabama

That the Garden of Eden might have been located in Wadi-Adhana at Marib, at Shabwa, or at some other site in the territories of Yemen and Hadramaut.



There is a hadith in which the Prophet of Islam (s) describes the "Gardens of Eden" as what no eyes have ever seen and what has never occurred to a heart.[16] However, there are sensible descriptions of this heaven in some Quranic verses. In Qur'an 9, it is described as a garden in which streams flow and pleasant dwellings are located.[17]

[16] Ṭabrisī, Majmaʿ al-bayān, vol. 5, p. 77.
[17]  Qurʾān, 9:72.


the Qur'an refers to the Heaven in different ways:


1-"Jannat" (literally meaning the garden; its plural form is: "Jannāt", الجنات): it has occurred over 100 times in the Qur'an. It is sometimes used with another noun or adjective, such as "Jannat al-Khuld" (جنّة الخلد, the Garden of Eternity), "Jannat al-Na'im" (جنة النعیم, the Garden of Bliss), "Jannat al-Ma'wa" (جنّة المأوی, the Garden of Abode), "Jannāt 'Adn" (جنّاتُ عدن, Gardens of Eden), and "Jannāt al-Firdaws" (جنّات الفردوس, Gardens of Paradise).

  • Among later exegetes of the Qur'an, Muhammad 'Abduh take the heaven of Adam (a) and Eve to be an Earthly one, taking this to be the view of Sunni scholars. However, Allama Tabataba'i takes the heaven of Adam (a) and Eve to be in the sky, but other than the promised Heaven. He takes it to be located in the world of Barzakh. He also takes the Qur'anic story of the fall from Eden to be a metaphor for the birth of every human person in this world.


Hazrat Imam Reza (عليه السلام) said: ..................................

When the great prophet of Islam was asked: How is the Heaven?

He replied: God had created it with the light “NUR” he made eight Heaven one under another. Their names are as follows:

1- Darus Salam 2- Darul Qarar 3- Darul Khuld 4- Jannatul Ma’va 5- Jannat e Adan 6- Jannat e Naeem 7- Jannat e Mutlaq 8- Firdaus e Bareen.

Hazrat Imam Jafar Sadiq (عليه السلام), to one of his companions stated: The Almighty God created one body and one soul and bring both together at one place for the perfection of man....................................

When Adam entered the Garden of Eden, by his loneliness he was feeling fearfulness as he was not having any companion or anybody to sit with him. He was very much gloomy and dejected and he was tiresome and weary, God made the slumber to overcome him. When he got up he saw a lady in the dress of Hoor (Hourise of Paradise) who kept his head upon her lap.

He enquired: Who are you? She relied : I am Havva as I am created by “Wahi”وح? Hazrat Adam (عليه السلام) made his head upright and asked God: O My Provident! For what purpose you had created her?

He got the reply: For your tranquillity and peace.




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Socotra: Legend Of Cain And Abel Lives On At This Troubled Island

So it's said, the first Dragon Blood Tree grew from a patch of blood spilled by Cain and Abel in their Biblical brawl.


Some believe that Cain and Abel were born in Socotra after their parents, Adam and Eve, were kicked out of the Garden of Eden. According to local folklore, the Dragon Blood Tree emerged when Cain committed the world’s first murder against his brother Abel, spilling his blood into the soil and allowing the tree to grow like a gory fertilizer.



The Dragon Blood Tree is known as Dam al-Akhawain in Arabic, which translates to “the blood of the two brothers”. Even the name of Socotra itself is said to have derived from the Arabic “suqs qutra”, which means “the market of dragon's blood”. 


Owing to its natural beauty, the island is sometimes known as the "Jewel of the Gulf of Aden” or the “Galápagos of the Indian Ocean”.



Socotra: Yemen’s secret Garden of Eden


Like a modern-day Garden of Eden, the island of Socotra is a secret world filled with trees of knowledge and life – unique species with mythical names such as Dragon’s Blood or Desert Rose.



The sea hasn’t covered this land for at least one hundred million years, and this is one reason UNESCO listed it as a World Natural Heritage Site in 2008. Socotra is a real-life “Jurassic park”, with valleys and hillsides that are home to animal and plant species unknown anywhere else on Earth. 



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Chapter 1: Ancient Yemen In The Qur’an

Jaffer Ali Ladak

The story of Yemen as a region of the Arabian peninsula is one of great tradition and culture. Much of this tradition was circulated and retold amongst the Arab peoples by the priests of religion, soothsayers, poets, tradesmen who travelled to distant lands and tribal leaders. Many of these stories were moral tales or lessons to be imparted to a community eager to exchange learnings and compete for religious and tribal rites.

The Qur’an states,

“Indeed We have sent messengers to every community” (Surah al-Nahl, 16:36).

“We have not sent a messenger except in the language of the people, so that they may make (the message) clear to them.” (Surah Ibrahim, 14:4).


The fact that the inhabitants of the Hijazi had heard about these great prophets, retained their stories and had even travelled to the places of their histories meant that the earliest recipients of the Qur’an felt that revelation was speaking to them about their own communities and forefathers; peoples whom they had traded and intermarried with. Yemen’s history was their history and vice versa. It also enlivened the entire region of Yemen to know that their land was the subject of revelation and that a prophet was recounting their history with so much depth and accuracy, such that had even been lost by their own great storytellers. This piqueed the interest of many thousands of Yemeni’s who eventually sent their delegations to the Prophet (S) and received delegations from him.

In light of this, our story of Yemen starts with the some of the verses of the Qur’an that speak about this region, its ancient prophets, tribes and events. We will recount the narratives of The People of Sheeba, the Prophets Hud (‘a) and Salih (‘a), and ‘The Story of The Year of The Elephant’ as mentioned in the Qur’an. 


الَّتِي لَمْ يُخْلَقْ مِثْلُهَا فِي الْبِلَادِ

The like of which was not created among (other) cities? (Surah al-Fajr, 89:8).

The interpretation here shows that the meaning of Iram is ‘a city’ and does not mean a sect or tribe, and this may be why some great commentators have accepted that this is the correct commentary, and we have preferred it too.

Some of the commentators have told long stories about the recent excavated beautiful, supposed city of Iram in the deserts of Arabia, and the lands of Eden, speaking about its high, splendid buildings and its extraordinary jewellery. There is no doubt however that the people of ʿAd were the strongest and the most advanced people of their time and their cities were admired by others. As the Qur’an says, there was not any city like that among the other cities.

There are many stories told about Shaddad, who was a son of ʿAd and Shaddad’s paradise. These stories are told by people and written in books so abundantly and frequently that ‘his paradise’ and ‘the gardens of Iram’ are used proverbially in the language, but they are all myths developed over time which have some roots in reality.


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Which heaven was the heaven in which Prophet Adam resided?
Which heaven was the heaven in which Prophet Adam resided?
Concise answer

There are different viewpoints regarding this matter amongst Quranic commentators:

A number of them believe that Prophet Adam's heaven was simply a beautiful and thriving garden on earth.

Some, unlike the first group perceive that it was in the seventh heaven, the reason being that it is said that Adam “descended” from the heaven when he was asked to leave.

Another theory is that Prophet Adam's heaven was the same promised heaven that we all know about.

The fourth theory says that Adam's heaven was neither the eternal heaven nor a garden on earth, but rather a heaven in barzakh, between this world and the hereafter, and we believe that this theory is what hadiths and the Quran tell us.


Detailed Answer


The Quran says: [1]«و قلنا یا آدم اسکن انت و زوجک الجنة».

Jannah (جنت) means thriving garden, recreation area, paradise, heaven.[2] And «جنات عدن»[3], which has been mentioned in the Quran, means an everlasting residence and since gardens are usually covered with trees, it is called “جنة”.


Some of the ahadith from the Ahlul-Bayt ((عليه السلام).) imply and in some cases, directly verify this issue. One example is the hadith in which Imam Sadeq (عليه السلام) was asked about Prophet Adam's heaven, where he replied: جنة من جنان الدنیا» «یطلع فیها الشمس و القمر و لو کان من جنان الآخرة ما خرج منها ابدا, "It was a garden among the gardens in this world where the sun and moon would rise upon it, and if it were the heaven of the hereafter he would never have left"[7].


Regarding what heaven is, it has been said that it is the most perfect world imaginable, a place with the perfect weather and every sort of blessing for the righteous who have passed away who will reside eternally reside there.[4]


In response to those who believe that Adam's heaven was the heaven of the hereafter one must say:


Firstly: Heaven in the hereafter isn't materialistic, rather, it is mithali and even higher than that, while Adam was created from dirt and worldly material. Thus his material body wouldn't be compatible to the hereafter. The eternal heaven is above and beyond the material world and human beings move and proceed to it through perfection and spiritual evolution.[16]



Secondly: The heaven in the hereafter is eternal, thus one who enters, never leaves.


Thirdly: According to the Quran"لالغو فیها ولا تأثیم"[17] "there they are free from laghv (idle talks and nonsense) and sins", sins and laghv cannot take place in the heaven of the hereafter.


The apparent meaning of Imam Ali's saying in Nahj ul-Balagheh«فاغتره عدوه نفاسة علیه بدار المقام و مرافقة الابرار» confirms this notion[9].


"But finally -out of the sheer jealousy of him residing among the righteous, in the eternal residence- Shaytan deceived him.”


The “eternal residence”  in which Adam resided was Dar ul Khold, where believers stay forever for it is the supreme paradise and it is the place where all the righteous are.


Subsequently Imam Ali also says: [10]«و وعده المرد الی جنته » "And God promised to return him to heaven". This statement implies that God almighty ultimately, sent Prophet Adam back to where he initially was, whereas the only place Prophet Adam would have gone after that was the heaven of the hereafter.

This viewpoint doesn’t contradict what imam Ali has said either; for it is possible that the promise that God gave to Adam regarding him returning to his first position, was actually referring to the ascending barzakh in which takes place before jannat ul-leqah.





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