The Houris The Islamic Myth of 72 Virgins

Islamic Paradise
Photo Credit: Iran Politics Club


One of the great myths of Islam is what awaits in Jannah (Paradise) for every Muslim (not just the martyr): 72 houris (virgins of either sex, depending on your orientation) of indescribable beauty and sensuality.

The houri are mentioned in many places throughout the Qur’an (e.g. Sura 55, Chapter 46). Companions for eternity and amazingly similar to modern porn stars in that they are “hairless except for the eye brows and the head,” pure, most beautiful of eye, voluptuous, and alluring.

The female houri are described as “non-menstruating/urinating/defecating and childfree,” and sporting firm, round breasts of ample size, not unlike Scarlett Johansson’s Golden Globes.

As my readers know, I am an atheist, however, I may be tempted to become a Muslim just on the slight chance that this version of the after-life is indeed true. It beats the Christian after-life; after all, I do not look good in wings and I cannot play the harp. As for the Jewish after-life, strictly speaking, there is none. The Hebrews of old, in exact opposite to Muslim belief, considered the present life as the main event. The afterlife was a return to the dust from whence we came (Genesis 3:19).

I should add the caveat, that I would only become Muslim if I didn’t have to do all the other Muslimy things, praying incessantly, beating wives, stoning adulterers, beheading unbelievers, and other things that infidels find annoying.

Now some modern Islamic scholars try to squirm away from the 72-virgins view of the Islamic after-life by explaining that the word houri actually means white-raisins not virgin maidens. Now I know that white raisins 1400 years ago might have been a real delight, but I ask you, do you really believe Mohammed thought he could persuade his soldiers to die in Jihad with an enticement of white raisins?

To counter that ridiculous notion, consider Abu al-Fadl ‘Abd al-Rahman ibn Abi Bakr, Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti (1445–1505 AD), an Egyptian writer, religious scholar, juristic expert and teacher whose works deal with a wide variety of subjects in Islamic theology [Wikipedia]. This is how he saw Paradise:

Each time we sleep with a Houri we find her virgin. Besides, the penis of the Elected never softens. The erection is eternal; the sensation that you feel each time you make love is utterly delicious and out of this world and were you to experience it in this world you would faint. Each chosen one [i.e. Muslim] will marry seventy [sic] houris, besides the women he married on earth, and all will have appetizing vaginas.

Hmmm, appetizing vaginas – I will never be able to see a sign for cleaning Persian carpets without thinking about that passage.