The answers to this question point out that Hinduism does not have any permanent hell.

But from the following excerpt from Vana Parva of Mahabharata, a permanent hell exists:

The Yaksha asked,--'O bull of the Bharata race, who is he that is condemned to everlasting hell? It behoveth thee to soon answer the question that I ask!' Yudhishthira answered,--'He that summoneth a poor Brahmana promising to make him a gift and then tells him that he hath nothing to give, goeth to everlasting hell. He also must go to everlasting hell, who imputes falsehood to the Vedas, the scriptures, the Brahmanas, the gods, and the ceremonies in honour of the Pitris, He also goeth to everlasting hell who though in possession of wealth, never giveth away nor enjoyeth himself from avarice, saying, he hath none.

Thus, Hinduism also has the concept of permanent hell, doesn't it? What am I not understanding, if not? How can we interpret this properly?

  • 1
    sometimes to show the gravity of the sin, such statements are made.
    – user16618
    Dec 11, 2018 at 7:07
  • 3
    Here everlasting might not mean everlasting in the true sense.. it may just indicate a "very long duration of time" for e.g for one whole kalpa.
    – Rickross
    Dec 11, 2018 at 7:33
  • 3
    @Rickross yes that seems proper understanding very very long time. Hanugm, Gita 16.19&20 also appears to indicate that demonic people will never rise again.
    – user16618
    Dec 11, 2018 at 7:53
  • In the end of hell's section of Srimad Bhagavatam it is clearly mentioned that return from hell to next birth happens. Suggestion from my side is not to read about these topics, the essence is that if you sin you will pay for it. Better don't go beyond the essence. Dec 11, 2018 at 19:16
  • 2
    When a smriti conflicts with sruti, sruti should be enjoined. There is no permanent hell in sruti. Some make take longer than others, but all reach the ocean... Dec 12, 2018 at 9:32

1 Answer 1


Garuda purana describes about various types of hells.. But there is a permanent adho loka called andhamas.. papa jiva will be in permanent state of andhamas.. according to madvacharya but I don't have exact reference..

  1. if you turn away from god.. Krishna says that he will make him born in womb of demoness and then andhamas..BG 16.16-20 sloka

Aasureem, yonim’, aapannaH, moodaH, janmni, janmni, Mam’, apraapya, ev, kauntey, tatH, yaanti, adhmaam’, gatim’ |

We can see evil person are only happier giving trouble to others.. these are nature of evil always rejoice in harming others..

They follow deceit as foremost dharma..

  • andhamas or Andha tamas?
    – Rickross
    Dec 12, 2018 at 6:13

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