82: (Al-Infitar: The Cleaving)
(Revealed at Makkah:
1 section; 19 verses)
This chapter, which receives its title from a statement made
in its opening verse as to heaven being cleft
asunder, is, as it were, a counterpart of the one
preceding it; for while that chapter, after mentioning
certain signs, draws the conclusion of the final triumph of
Islam, this refers to that triumph in its opening verses,
and speaks also of the utter helplessness in which the
opponents would find themselves as a result of that triumph.
Its date of revelation is the same as that of the preceding
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the
1 When the heaven
is cleft asunder,
2 And when the
stars become dispersed,
3 And when the
rivers are made to flow forth,
4 And when the
graves are laid opena
5 Every soul will
know what it has sent before and what it has held
6 O man, what
beguiles thee from thy Lord, the Gracious?
7 Who created
thee, then made thee complete, then made thee in a right
8 Into whatever
form He pleases He casts thee.
9 Nay, but you
give the lie to the Judgment,
10 And surely
there are keepers over you,
12 They know
what you do.a
13 Surely the
righteous are in bliss,
14 And the
wicked are truly in burning Fire
15 They will
enter it on the day of Judgment.
16 And will not
be absent from it.
17 And what will
make thee realise what the day of Judgment is?
18 Again, what
will make thee realise what the day of Judgment
19 The day when
no soul controls aught for another soul. And the command on
that day is Allahs.
Taken metaphorically the first four verses tell us how a
great spiritual rising would be brought about. The cleaving
asunder of the heaven would mean that the doors of heaven
will open and Divine help will come to the Prophet. The
dispersing of the stars signifies the spreading
abroad of the bearers of the message of Truth, who are
likened to stars, as the Prophet said: "My companions are as
stars" (Msh. 27:13). The indication is that a time would
come when the teachers of Truth would disperse themselves in
Arabia, and then throughout the world. The flowing forth
of the rivers is in accordance with what is stated
elsewhere in the Holy Quran in a parable: "He sends
down water from the clouds, then watercourses flow according
to their measure, ... Thus does Allah set forth parables"
(13:17). The rivers of Divine knowledge were made to reach
the dry lands within and without Arabia. The laying open of
the graves signifies the spiritual resurrection which was to
be brought about by the Holy Prophet, for the reprobate are
clearly spoken of as being in the graves (35:22). Thus all
these four verses speak of the great change that was to be
brought about in the world by the preaching of the Prophet.
According to Farra, the significance of the laying open of
graves is their throwing out gold and silver (mineral
wealth), which lies buried in them, and the coming out of
the dead will be after this, and it is one of the signs of
the Hour that the earth should throw out its mineral wealth
(LA). Or, what is meant is that the mysteries hidden
from the human eye will be revealed (R). Taken
literally, the words speak of the Resurrection.
to verse 4]
This verse supports what is said in the previous note.
Qaffal holds that the knowledge spoken of here will accrue
before the day of Resurrection (Rz). A greater manifestation
of the same will, however, take place in the life after
to verse 5]
That every action of man is recorded and bears fruit is
one of the principal doctrines of the religion of Islam. Of
course, it is not meant that angels are sitting with pens in
their hands and inkstands before them, at desks, like
copyists, noting down that at such and such a time such a
one did such a good or such a bad deed. That would be a
distortion of the teaching of the Quran. For what that
record is, see the next chapter, where both the record of
the righteous and the record of the wicked is spoken of. See
also 17:13, 14. [Back
to verse 12]
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