The Surah’s name has been taken from the term “ الواقعة ” which is mentioned in the first verse of Surah Al- Waqi’ah.
إِذَا وَقَعَتِ الْوَاقِعَة
The term Al- Waqi’ah means, The Last Day, Day of Judgment, Day of Resurrection or Doomsday. This Surah guides the people about the matters of Day of Resurrection and so it is termed as “ الواقعة .” The English name of this Surah is “The Inevitable” or “The Event”.
- In Qur’an, out of 144 Surahs, this Surah is on 56th number.
- The total verses and words of this Surah are 96 and 379 respectively.
- This Surah is divided into 3 Rukus or sections.
- The total letters are 1,756 and unique words which came without repetition are 271 in number.
- The revelation period of this Surah is believed to be 615 – 616 AD.
- Majority of the commentators believe that it is a Meccan Surah and it revealed approximately 6 to 7 years before the Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) migration to Madina but some commentators are of opinion that some part of this Surah is from Medinan Period.
- In this Surah, God, the forerunners, the people of left hand and the people of right hand are the main characters.
Background of Surah Waqiah:
The Surah Waqiah was revealed at the time when the disbelievers just began to hear about the invitation to Islam from Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). They became astonished after hearing that the entire system of the earth and heavens would one day be overturned and then another world would be set up in which all the dead, of the former and the latter generations, would be resurrected. They raised many objections regarding day of resurrection that where this earth, oceans, mountains, moon and sun will go? How will the centuries-old dead bodies rise up to life? How can one in his senses believe that there will be another life after death and there will be gardens of Paradise and the fire of Hell? Such objections and thoughts had been expressed by the people of Makkah at that time and they did not believe the teachings of Islam. Therefore, in this Surah Allah answers the objections that were raised by the disbelievers.
Surah Waqiah English Translation:
(56:1) When the Event will come to pass (56:2) – and then there will be no one to deny its occurrence1 (56:3) (a calamitous Event) that shall turn things upside down:2 (56:4) when the earth will suddenly shake with a terrible shaking,3 (56:5) and the mountains will crumble (56:6) and will scatter abroad into fine dust. (56:7) You shall then become three groups.4 (56:8) The People on the Right:5 and how fortunate will be the People on the Right! (56:9) And the People on the Left:6 and how miserable will be the People on the Left! (56:10) As for the Foremost, they will be the foremost!7 (56:11) They shall be near-stationed (to their Lord), (56:12) in the Gardens of Bliss. (56:13) A throng of the ancients, (56:14) and a few from later times.8 (56:15) They (will be seated) on gold-encrusted couches, (56:16) reclining on them, arrayed face to face; (56:17) immortal youths shall go about them9 (56:18) with goblets and ewers and a cup filled with a drink drawn from a running spring, (56:19) a drink by which their minds will not be clouded nor will it cause drunkenness;10 (56:20) they will also go about them with the fruits of which they may choose, (56:21) and with the flesh of any fowl that they may desire to eat;11 (56:22) and there shall be wide-eyed maidens, (56:23) beautiful as pearls hidden in their shells.12 (56:24) All this shall be theirs as a reward for their deeds. (56:25) There they shall hear no idle talk nor any sinful speech.13 (56:26) All talk will be sound and upright.14 (56:27) As for the People on the Right, how fortunate shall be the people on the Right! (56:28) They shall be in the midst of thornless lote trees,15 (56:29) and flower-clad acacias, (56:30) and extended shade, (56:31) and gushing water, (56:32) and abundant fruit,16 (56:33) never-ending and unforbidden. (56:34) They shall be on upraised couches, (56:35) and their spouses We shall have brought them into being afresh, (56:36) and shall have made them virgins,17 (56:37) intensely loving18 and of matching age.19 (56:38) All this will be for the People on the Right; (56:39) a large throng from the ancients, (56:40) and also a large throng from those of later times. (56:41) As for the People on the Left: how miserable will be the People on the Left! (56:42) They will be in the midst of scorching wind and boiling water, (56:43) and a shade of thick, pitch-black smoke, (56:44) which will neither be cool nor soothing. (56:45) Surely they had lived before in luxury, (56:46) and had persisted in the Great Sin.20 (56:47) They used to say: “What! Once we are dead and are reduced to dust and bones, shall we still be raised to a new life from the dead? (56:48) (We) and our fore-fathers of yore?” (56:49) Tell them, (O Prophet): “The earlier ones and the later ones (56:50) shall all be brought together on an appointed Day. (56:51) Then you, the erring ones and those that gave the lie to the Truth, (56:52) shall all eat from the Tree of al-Zaqqum,21 (56:53) filling your bellies with it; (56:54) and thereupon you shall drink boiling water, (56:55) drinking it as thirsty camels do.” (56:56) Thus shall they be entertained on the Day of Recompense. (56:57) We have created you,22 then why would you not confirm it?23 (56:58) Did you ever consider the sperm that you emit? (56:59) Do you create a child out of it, or are We its creators?24 (56:60) It is We Who ordained death upon you25 and We are not to be frustrated. (56:61) Had We so wished, nothing could have hindered Us from replacing you by others like yourselves, or transforming you into beings you know nothing about. (56:62) You are well aware of the first creation; then, do you learn no lesson from it? (56:63) Have you considered the seeds you till? (56:64) Is it you or We Who make them grow? (56:65) If We so wished, We could have reduced your harvest to rubble, and you would have been left wonder-struck to exclaim (56:66) “We have been penalised; (56:67) nay; we have been undone!” (56:68) Did you cast a good look at the water that you drink? (56:69) Is it you who brought it down from the clouds or is it We Who brought it down? (56:70) If We had so pleased, We could have made it bitter.30 So why would you not give thanks?3 (56:71) Did you consider the fire which you kindle? (56:72) Did you make its tree32 grow or was it We Who made it grow? (56:73) We made it a reminder33 and a provision for the needy. (56:74) Glorify, then, (O Prophet), the name of your Great Lord. (56:75) No!36 I swear by the positions of the stars (56:76) and this is indeed a mighty oath, if only you knew (56:77) that this indeed is a noble Qur'an, (56:78) inscribed in a well-guarded Book, (56:79) which none but the pure may touch; (56:80) a revelation from the Lord of the Universe. (56:81) Do you, then, take this discourse in light esteem, (56:82) and your portion in it is simply that you denounce it as false? (56:83) Why, then, when the soul leaps up to the throat, (56:84) the while you are helplessly watching that he is on the verge of death, (56:85) – at that moment when We are closer to him than you, although you do not see (Us) (56:86) if you are not subject to anyone's authority, (56:87) why are you then not able to bring them back to life if you are truthful? (56:88) So if he is one of those who are near-stationed (to Allah), (56:89) then happiness and delight and Gardens of Bliss are his. (56:90) And if he is one of the People on the Right, (56:91) he will be welcomed by the words: “Peace to you” from the People on the Right (56:92) And if he is one of those who give the lie (to this Message) and go astray, (56:93) then he will be served boiling water, (56:94) and will be scorched by the Fire. (56:95) That indeed is the absolute truth. (56:96) So glorify the name of your Great Lord.
Surah Waqiah Urdu Translation:
Moreover, in this Surah Allah provides the description of:
1) The Coming of Judgment Day and Its Horrors:
In Surah Al- Waqi’ah Allah says, that the day of resurrection is real and will surely come. When I will give command to begin that day then no one shall stop it from happening. Moreover no living being shall prevent from this day that can lie that this event has not taken place. This day would change everything on earth and turn it upside-down. The people who posed as the honored ones on the earth would become unworthy and those who were considered unworthy would become honorable. Furthermore, on that day the earth would shake violently and the mountains would crumble.
2) Classification Of People Into Three Categories:
Allah says, on the day of resurrection all human beings would be divided into three classes.
ۙ مَاۤ اَصۡحٰبُ الۡمَيۡمَنَةِ ؕ فَاَصۡحٰبُ الۡمَيۡمَنَةِ
(56:8) The People on the Right:5 and how fortunate will be the People on the Right!
The ashab-al-maimanah are people on the right hand, those who would be considered as blessed and fortunate people.
ۙ مَاۤ اَصۡحٰبُ الۡمَشۡـئَـمَةِؕ وَاَصۡحٰبُ الۡمَشۡـئَـمَةِ
(56:9) And the People on the Left:6 and how miserable will be the People on the Left!
The term ashab-al-mashamah implies those people who would stand on the left side in the court of Allah; these people have ill-luck and would suffer disgrace.
ۙ وَالسّٰبِقُوۡنَ السّٰبِقُوۡنَۚ
(56:10) As for the Foremost, they will be the foremost!7
The term Sabiqoon symbolizes those people who did good deeds and responded to the calls of Allah and Holy Prophet (PBUH). These people would be nearest to Allah on the day of resurrection and they would be in the gardens of delight.
3) The Reward of the Foremost in Faith:
Allah states the difference between earlier generations and the latter generations. Earlier or the former generations includes those Sabiqoon who were the foremost in faith, did good deeds and passed away thousands of years before the advent of Hazarat Muhammad (PBUH). Latter generation refers to this Ummah, mean the people who have been born since the advent of Hazarat Muhammad (PBUH) or those who will be born till the last day. Allah says that (56:15) They (will be seated) on gold-encrusted couches and they will face each other and none of them will be in back lines. They would be served a cup filled with a drink drawn from a running spring. But, 56:19) a drink by which their minds will not be clouded nor will it cause drunkenness. These fortunate people could choose the fruits and flesh of fowls of their choice. There shall present wide lovely eyed maidens or Hurs. These Hurs would be extremely beautiful and these things would be presented as a reward to people who would do good deeds. Furthermore, there shall be no sinful speech in heaven.
4) The Reward of People on the Right Hand:
In heaven, for the people on the right hand there would be:
- (56:28) They shall be in the midst of thornless lote trees,
- (56:29) and flower-clad acacias
- (56:30) and extended shade
- (56:31) and gushing water
- (56:32) and abundant fruit,
- (56:33) never-ending and unforbidden
- (56:34) They shall be on upraised couches
- (56:35) and their spouses We shall have brought them into being afresh
- (56:36) and shall have made them virgins,
- (56:37) intensely loving18 and of matching age.
5) Punishment for the people on the left hand:
Allah in Surah Al-Waqi’ah mentioned the condition of those on the left hand.
(56:42) They will be in the midst of scorching wind and boiling water
(56:43) and a shade of thick, pitch-black smoke
(56:44) which will neither be cool nor soothing
(56:45) Surely they had lived before in luxury
(56:46) and had persisted in the Great Sin
Moreover, the people on the left hand, the disbelievers of Islam raised objections like:
وَكَانُوۡا يَقُوۡلُوۡنَ ۙ اَـئِذَا مِتۡنَا وَكُنَّا تُرَابًا وَّعِظَامًا ءَاِنَّا لَمَبۡعُوۡثُوۡنَۙ
(56:47) They used to say: “What! Once we are dead and are reduced to dust and bones, shall we still be raised to a new life from the dead?
Allah says to those people in Surah Al-Waqi’ah,
قُلۡ اِنَّ الۡاَوَّلِيۡنَ وَالۡاٰخِرِيۡنَۙ
(56:49) Tell them, (O Prophet): “The earlier ones and the later ones
لَمَجۡمُوۡعُوۡنَ ۙ اِلٰى مِيۡقَاتِ يَوۡمٍ مَّعۡلُوۡمٍ
(56:50) shall all be brought together on an appointed Day.
Allah says, those who didn’t believe the Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) teachings and regarded them as a lie. They shall,
(56:52) shall all eat from the Tree of al-Zaqqum,
(56:53) filling your bellies with it;
(56:54) and thereupon you shall drink boiling water,
(56:55) drinking it as thirsty camels do.
6) Proof that Resurrection Day will occur:
Allah mentioned in the first two verses of Surah Al-Waqi’ah that resurrection day is real and will surely happen and no one could stop it from happening. Allah says to the disbelievers in this Surah:
نَحۡنُ خَلَقۡنٰكُمۡ فَلَوۡلَا تُصَدِّقُوۡن
(56:57) We have created you, then why would you not confirm it?
(56:58) Did you ever consider the sperm that you emit?
(56:59) Do you create a child out of it, or are We its creators?
Allah mentioned in Surah Al-Waqi’ah that HE is the mightiest, the only God and if Allah can create you once then HE surely has the power to create you once again on the day of resurrection. Allah says,
نَحۡنُ قَدَّرۡنَا بَيۡنَكُمُ الۡمَوۡتَ وَمَا نَحۡنُ بِمَسۡبُوۡقِيۡنَۙ
(56:60) It is We Who ordained death upon you25 and We are not to be frustrated.
Allah says that birth and death of every living being is under HIS control. No power in the world can cause death to a person before the time appointed for his death by Allah, nor can keep him alive after it even for a moment.
Furthermore, Allah mentioned in this Surah the other blessings like seeds which grown into crops (food) and water which HE has showered upon HIS people:
(56:63) Have you considered the seeds you till? (56:64) Is it you or We Who make them grow?
Allah says that a seed which a farmer buries in the soil is actually dead. It is Allah who infuses it with plant life. Isn’t it a miracle we see countless dead bodies like this rising. So how can it be difficult for Allah to give rebirth to the people on the day of resurrection?
Allah says to HIS people,
فَسَبِّحۡ بِاسۡمِ رَبِّكَ الۡعَظِيۡمِ
(56:74) Glorify, then, (O Prophet), the name of your Great Lord.
7) Greatness of Qur’an:
فَلَاۤ اُقۡسِمُ بِمَوٰقِعِ النُّجُوۡمِۙ
(56:75) No!36 I swear by the positions of the stars.
وَاِنَّهٗ لَقَسَمٌ لَّوۡ تَعۡلَمُوۡنَ عَظِيۡمٌۙ
(56:76) and this is indeed a mighty oath, if only you knew
اِنَّهٗ لَـقُرۡاٰنٌ كَرِيۡمٌۙ
(56:77) that this indeed is a noble Qur'an
Allah mentioned in this Surah that Qur’an is the book of Allah and whatever written in it is the truth. The oath has been sworn to refute certain objections that the disbelievers were raising with regard to the Qur’an.
Furthermore, Allah describes the greatness of Qur’an in the following manner ,
(56:78) inscribed in a well-guarded Book,
(56:79) which none but the pure may touch;
(56:80) a revelation from the Lord of the Universe.
8) Condition of People at the time of their Death:
People face three types of conditions at the time of their death:
People who are very near to Allah.
فَاَمَّاۤ اِنۡ كَانَ مِنَ الۡمُقَرَّبِيۡنَۙ
(56:88) So if he is one of those who are near-stationed (to Allah)
(56:89) then happiness and delight and Gardens of Bliss are his.
People who are on the right hand.
وَاَمَّاۤ اِنۡ كَانَ مِنۡ اَصۡحٰبِ الۡيَمِيۡنِۙ
(56:90) And if he is one of the People on the Right
(56:91) he will be welcomed by the words: “Peace to you” from the People on the Right.
People who denied the truth and are ignorant of Allah.
وَاَمَّاۤ اِنۡ كَانَ مِنَ الۡمُكَذِّبِيۡنَ الضَّآلِّيۡنَۙ
(56:92) And if he is one of those who give the lie (to this Message) and go astray,
(56:93) then he will be served boiling water, (56:94) and will be scorched by the Fire.
Benefits of Reading Surah Al-Waqi’ah:
The major benefit of reading Surah Al-Waqi’ah is the protection from poverty. Holy Prophet (PBUH) taught us to recite this Surah before sleeping.
The Hadith mentions:
- “Surah Waqi’ah will become protection from poverty for the one who recites it every night”.
- "Surah Waqiah is the Surah of Wealth, so recite it and teach it to your children.
Holy Qur’an is one of the blessings of Allah as it guides people in every aspect of life also it is barakah for the people who recite the Quran regularly, follow and implement its commands in lives. The route of ultimate success in the world and hereafter is to obey and follows the commandments of Allah and HIS beloved Prophet (PBUH).
May Allah forgive all our sins and keep us on the right path. (Ameen)
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