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Surah Al-Qiyamat

Ayat/pg: 5 | 10 | 15 | 20 | All

Maududi's Commentry (Tafseer) on Surah Al-Qiyamat

Mecca Mecca (31)
40Total Ayat: 40
2Total Ruku: 2


The Surah has been so named after the word al- Qiyamah in the firstverse. This is not only the name but also the title of this Surah, forit is devoted to Resurrection itself.

Period of Revelation

Although there is no tradition to indicate its period of revelation,yet there is in the subject matter of this Surah an internal evidence,which shows that it is one of the earliest Surahs to be sent down atMakkah. After verse 15 the discourse is suddenly interrupted and theHoly Prophet (upon whom be peace) told: "Do not move your tongue toremember this Revelation hastily. It is Our responsibility to have itremembered and read. Therefore, when We are reciting it, listen to itsrecital carefully. Again, it is Our responsibility to explain itsmeaning." Then, from verse 2O onward the same theme which wasinterrupted at verse 15, is resumed. This parenthetical passage,according to both the context and the traditions, has been interposedhere for the reason that when the Angel Gabriel was reciting this Surahto the Holy Prophet, the Holy Prophet, lest he should forget its wordslater, was repeating them at the same moment. This in fact happened atthe time when the coming down and receipt of Revelation was yet a newexperience for him and he was not yet fully used to receiving itcalmly. There are two other instances also of this in the Qur'an.First, in Surah Ta Ha the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) has beentold: "And see that you do not hasten to recite the Qur'an before itsrevelation is completed to you." (v. 114). Then, in Surah Al-A'la, ithas been said: "We shall enable you to recite:, then you shall neverforget. (v. 6). Later, when the Holy Prophet became fully used toreceiving the Revelation well, there remained no need to give him anysuch instruction. That is why except for these, three, there is noother instance of this in the Qur'an.

Theme and Subject Matter

Most of the Surahs, from here till the end of the Qur'an, in view oftheir content and style, seem to have been sent down in the periodwhen after the first seven verses of Surah Al-Muddaththir, revelationof the Qur'an began like a shower of rain:Thus, in the successivelyrevealed Surahs Islam and its fundamental concepts and moral teachingswere presented so forcefully and effectively in pithy, brief sentencesand the people of Makkah warned so vehemently on their errors anddeviations that the Quraish chiefs were utterly confounded. Therefore,before the next Hajj season came they held the conference for devisingschemes to defeat the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) as has beenmentioned in the Introduction to the Surah Al-Muddaththir above.

In thisSurah, addressing thee deniers of the Hereafter, replies have beengiven to each of their doubts and objections, strong arguments havebeen given to prove the possibility, occurrence and necessity of theResurrection and Hereafter, and also it has been pointed out clearlythat the actual reason of the people's denying the Hereafter is notthat they regard it as impossible rationally but because their selfishmotives do not allow them to affirm it. At the same time, the peoplehave been warned, as if to say: "The event, the occurrence of whichyou deny, will inevitably come: all your deeds will be brought andplaced before you. As a matter of fact, even before any of you seeshis record, he will be knowing fully well what he has done in theworld, for no man is unaware of himself, no matter what excuses andpretenses he may offer to deceive the world and deceive himself inrespect of his misdeeds."

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