SURA 84. Inshiqaq, or The Rending Asunder
1. When the sky is rent asunder,
2. And hearkens to [the Command of] its Lord, and it must needs [do so];-
3. And when the earth is flattened out,
4. And casts forth what is within it and becomes [clean] empty,
5. And hearkens to [the Command of] its Lord,- and it must needs [do so];- [then
will come Home the full reality].
6. O thou man! Verily thou art ever toiling on towards thy Lord- painfully
toiling,- but thou shalt meet Him.
7. Then he who is given his Record in his right hand,
8. Soon will his account be taken by an easy reckoning,
9. And he will turn to his people, rejoicing!
10. But he who is given his Record behind his back,-
11. Soon will he cry for perdition,
12. And he will enter a Blazing Fire.
13. Truly, did he go about among his people, rejoicing!
14. Truly, did he think that he would not have to return [to Us]!
15. Nay, nay! for his Lord was [ever] watchful of him!
16. So I do call to witness the ruddy glow of Sunset;
17. The Night and its Homing;
18. And the Moon in her fullness:
19. Ye shall surely travel from stage to stage.
20. What then is the matter with them, that they believe not?-
21. And when the Qur’an is read to them, they fall not prostrate,
22. But on the contrary the Unbelievers reject [it].
23. But Allah has full knowledge of what they secrete [in their breasts]
24. So announce to them a Penalty Grievous,
25. Except to those who believe and work righteous deeds: For them is a Reward
that will never fail.
1. When we meet our Lord, we will fall into two groups: one will suffer hardship incomparable to that suffered on earth; and the other, consisting of those who have demonstrated their obedience and true submission, will enjoy a rest in which the suffering of this life will be forgotten.
2. He who is given his book in his right hand is the happy one who was true to his faith. God is pleased with him and rewards him well. He will have a lenient reckoning, that is to say that he will not be called to account for what he did in this life.
3. Ā’ishah (RA) “I heard God’s Messenger (peace be upon him) saying in his prayers ‘My Lord, make my reckoning a lenient one’. When he had finished his prayers I asked him, ‘What is the lenient reckoning?’ He answered: ‘He who receives lenient reckoning will have his record looked into and will be forgiven, but he who is called to account on that day will perish.”
4. This is, then, the lenient reckoning accorded to him who receives his record in his right hand. He shall win “and return rejoicing to his people,” who will also have won and arrived in heaven ahead of him. We deduce from this statement that those who accept the faith in this life and adhere to the right path will gather together in heaven. Everyone ends up with those whom he loves. We also have an image of the winner’s all-important test: he returns with his face overflowing with happiness.
5. This image is the opposite of what happens to the afflicted one who has to account for his evil deeds and receives his record with reluctance.
6.The Qur’ān usually makes a distinction between receiving one’s record with one’s right or left hand. Here we have a new image: the record is given from behind one’s back. There is no reason to prevent anyone being given his record in his left hand and from behind his back at the same time. It is an image of one who feels great shame and hates to be confronted with what he has done. We have no real knowledge of the nature of this record or how it is given in one’s right or left hand or behind one’s back. But we can comprehend from the first expression the reality of being a winner, and from the second the reality of doom.
7. So, the unfortunate one who lived his life on earth labouring hard but disobeying God and indulging in what is forbidden will know his destiny. He realizes that what lies in front of him is more suffering and hard labour with the only difference being that this time the suffering is greater, uninterrupted and endless.
8. Indeed God has always been aware of man’s thoughts, actions and feelings. God knows that, contrary to what man may think, there will be a return to Him to receive the reward merited by actions on earth. This is indeed what happens when all return to God to meet their appointed destiny, when what God has ordained will take place.