Surah Al-Qaari’ah

Surah Al-Qaari’ah

Translation

  1. The day of clamour!
  2. What is the day of clamour?
  3. And what will make you understand what the day of clamour is!
  4. A day wherein men will be like scattered moths
  5. And the mountains will be like carded wool.
  6. Then he whose scales are heavy,
  7. Will live a pleasant life.
  8. But he whose scales are light,
  9. His abode will be the pit.
  10. And, what will make you understand what this is!
  11. A blazing fire.

Background

Al-qaariáh is a another name for the day of Qiyaamah. In this Surah there is an explanation of the weighing of deeds and the reward of Jannah if the scales are heavy or punishment if the scales are light.

Verse 1

The word qaariah comes from the Arabic word qará which means to strike one thing against another forcefully producing a loud noise. In this Surah the day of Qiyaamah has been called al-Qaariah because the sound of the trumpet on that day will deafen the ears of man and their hearts will be crushed by it’s severity.

Verse 2 – 3

Allah asks the question to create a feeling of awe within the reader regarding the greatness and seriousness of the verses to come.

Verse 4

Man will not truly comprehend the severity of that day until he has seen it with his own eyes. However, two events describing the panic of that day have been mentioned. Humanity on that day will be like moths of this world. This comparison has been used for a number of reasons :

  1. Like moths are in large number in a small area all of man from the first to the last will be gathered together on one platform
  2. Like moths are weak and helpless so shall man be on that day
  3. Like moths in a storm fly in disarray man shall be in a similar state on that day. The exceptions to this would be the pious and righteous Muslims who will rise from their graves in peace and will not be in a state of disarray.
  4. Like moths are attracted to a light man will heed to the call and gather before Allah to be questioned for their deeds.

Verse 5

Ihn refers to such wool whose strands are of diverse colours. As the mountains on that day will be flying about their colours will appear like that of carded wool.

Verse 6 – 7

A person whose scale of good deeds is weightier will enter into paradise. The plural, mawaazeen, has been used here rather than the singular, meezaan. Some scholars mention that this is because there will be many different scales on that day.

Verse 8 – 9

A person whose scale of bad deeds is heavier will have the fire of hell as his abode. The word umm, which means mother in Arabic, has been used here in the meaning of abode since a mother is a shelter and protective fort for her child.

Verse 10- 11

Allah describes the severity of the fire of hell in this verse.

Lessons

  1. Qiyaamah is certainly an event to be feared. Allah makes reference to Qiyaamah at many places in the Quran to continuously remind man of his final accountability before his Creator. This Surah teaches us that mighty mountains will be reduced to wool. What will happen to those sinful souls who dared to sin openly and fearless while walking on the earth?
  2. A skeptic of the modern world might want to question : How can abstract actions and deeds be weighed? This question can be answered in many ways:
  3. We learn from a number of ahadith that man’s good and bad deeds will take a physical form or shape in the grave and the hereafter. For example, a hadith teaches us that zakaah which was not paid will come to a person in the form of a poisonous snake in his grave and torment him.
  4. In today’s world man measures and weighs things which centuries ago seemed impossible. Sophisticated instruments measure air, temperature, the speed of sound and light, energy and various other things. Allah is All-powerful. He is the Creator of the entire universe. If He can allow man to develop sophisticated instruments of measure can’t He do so Himself?
  5. A number of ahadith mention certain special good deeds and traits which will be weighty on that day. A few of these are mentioned below :
  6. To recite Subhaanallaahi wabihamdihi subhaanallahil azeem
  7. Good character
  8. To keep silent or to talk only when necessary
  9. Crying due to the fear of Allah and the hereafter
  10. Teaching of Islamic laws and regulations
  11. Accompanying the body of a deceased person to the grave
  12. Spending on one’s family and fulfilling their needs
  13. Ink from the writings of the scholars of Islam
  14. From this surah it is important to take note that deeds and actions will be weighed and not counted on the day of Qiyaamah. This difference is critical because it points to the importance of quality rather than quantity. If a person’s actions were few but were filled with sincerity and conformed to the Sunnah these will outweigh such a person’s abundance of Salaah, fasting, Sadaqah and Haj which were not filled with sincerity or were done contrary to Sunnah.