Surah Waqi’ah >> Currently viewing Surah Waqi’ah Ayat 1 (56:1)

Surah Waqi’ah Ayat 1 in Arabic Text

إِذَا وَقَعَتِ ٱلْوَاقِعَةُ
Izaa waqa’atil waaqi’ah

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 1

Sahih International
When the Occurrence occurs,

Yusuf Ali
When the Event inevitable cometh to pass,

Abul Ala Maududi
When the Event will come to pass

Muhsin Khan
When the Event (i.e. the Day of Resurrection) befalls.

Pickthall
When the event befalleth –

Dr. Ghali
When the Event (Literally: the Befalling) befalls,

Abdel Haleem
When that which is coming arrives,

Quran 56 Verse 1 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Waqi’ah ayat 1, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(56:1) When the Event will come to pass


There is no commentary by Abul Maududi available for this verse.

Ibn-Kathir

1. When the Waqi`ah occurs 2. There is not, for its occurrence, Kadhibah. 3. Bringing low (some), exalting (others). 4. When the earth will be shaken with a terrible shake. 5. And the mountains will be powdered to dust, 6. So that they will become floating dust particles. 7. And you (all) will be in three groups. 8. So those on the right — how (fortunate) will be those on the right! 9. And those on the left — how (unfortunate) will be those on the left! 10. And those foremost will be foremost. 11. These will be the nearest (to Allah). 12. In the Gardens of Delight.


The Horrors of the Day of Resurrection

Al-Waqi`ah (the occurrence), is one of the names of the Day of Resurrection, because that Day is real and will surely come. Allah the Exalted said in other Ayat,

﴿فَيَوْمَئِذٍ وَقَعَتِ الْوَاقِعَةُ ﴾

(Then on that Day shall the Waqi`ah occur.)( 69:15) Allah the Exalted said,

﴿لَيْسَ لِوَقْعَتِهَا كَاذِبَةٌ ﴾

(There is not, for its occurrence, Kadhibah.) means, when He commands the Day of Resurrection to begin, none can stop it from happening or prevent it from beginning,

﴿اسْتَجِيبُواْ لِرَبِّكُمْ مِّن قَبْلِ أَن يَأْتِىَ يَوْمٌ لاَّ مَرَدَّ لَهُ مِنَ اللَّهِ﴾

(Answer the call of your Lord before there comes from Allah a Day which can not be averted.) (42:47),

﴿سَأَلَ سَآئِلٌ بِعَذَابٍ وَاقِعٍ – لِّلْكَـفِرِينَ لَيْسَ لَهُ دَافِعٌ ﴾

(A questioner asked concerning a torment about to occur — upon the disbelievers, which none can avert.)(70:1-2),

﴿وَيَوْمَ يَقُولُ كُن فَيَكُونُ قَوْلُهُ الْحَقُّ وَلَهُ الْمُلْكُ يَوْمَ يُنفَخُ فِى الصُّوَرِ عَـلِمُ الْغَيْبِ وَالشَّهَـدَةِ وَهُوَ الْحَكِيمُ الْخَبِيرُ﴾

(And on the Day He will say: “Be!” — and it is! His Word is the Truth. His will be the dominion on the Day when the Trumpet will be blown. All-Knower of the unseen and the seen. He is the All-Wise, Well Aware.)(6:73) As for the meaning of

﴿كَاذِبَةٌ﴾

(Kadhibah) Muhammad bin Ka`b said: “It will certainly occur,” while Qatadah said, “It shall not be discontinued, taken back or aborted. Allah’s statement,

﴿خَافِضَةٌ رَّافِعَةٌ ﴾

(Bringing low, exalting.) indicates that Al-Waqi`ah lowers some people to the lowest parts of the Fire, even if they had been mighty in this life. It also elevates others to the highest grades in the residence of eternal delight, even if they were weak in this life. This was said by Al-Hasan, Qatadah and others. Al-`Awfi reported from Ibn `Abbas:

﴿خَافِضَةٌ رَّافِعَةٌ ﴾

(Bringing low, exalting), “It made the near and the far hear it,” while `Ikrimah said, “It lowered, and thus those who were close heard it, and elevated, and thus those in the distance heard it.” Ad-Dahhak and Qatadah said similarly. Allah said,

﴿إِذَا رُجَّتِ الاٌّرْضُ رَجّاً ﴾

(When the earth will be shaken with a terrible shake.) meaning, it is shaken and moved violently over all of its surface and through its depths. Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, Qatadah and others said about Allah’s saying:,

﴿إِذَا رُجَّتِ الاٌّرْضُ رَجّاً ﴾

(When the earth will be shaken with a terrible shake.) it means “Violently shaken.” Ar-Rabi` bin Anas said, “The earth will be shaken with all that is in it, just as a sifter is shaken with its contents.” This is like Allah’s saying:

﴿إِذَا زُلْزِلَتِ الاٌّرْضُ زِلْزَالَهَا ﴾

(When the earth is shaken with its earthquake.)(99:1) and,

﴿يأَيُّهَا النَّاسُ اتَّقُواْ رَبَّكُمْ إِنَّ زَلْزَلَةَ السَّاعَةِ شَىْءٌ عَظِيمٌ ﴾

(O mankind! Have Taqwa of your Lord! Verily, the earthquake of the Hour is a terrible thing.)(22:1). Allah said:

﴿وَبُسَّتِ الْجِبَالُ بَسّاً ﴾

(And the mountains will be powdered to dust,) meaning, relentlessly pulverized. This was said by Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, `Ikrimah and Qatadah and others. Ibn Zayd said: “The mountains will become just like Allah described them,

﴿كَثِيباً مَّهِيلاً﴾

(A heap of sand poured out.)(73:14).” Allah’s saying:

﴿فَكَانَتْ هَبَآءً مُّنبَثّاً ﴾

(So that they will become floating dust particles.) Abu Ishaq narrated from Al-Harith, from `Ali: “It will become like the rising dust storm that soon fades away leaving no trace of itself behind.” Al-`Awfi reported from Ibn `Abbas about Allah’s saying:

﴿فَكَانَتْ هَبَآءً مُّنبَثّاً ﴾

(So that they will become floating dust particles.) “It describes the rising embers from the fire when it is kindled, but when the embers land, they are extinguished quickly.” `Ikrimah said, “The floating dust particles that the wind scatters all around,” while Qatadah said,

﴿هَبَآءً مُّنبَثّاً﴾

(floating particles), “Like the dry parts of trees that the wind scatters all about.” This Ayah is similar to several other Ayat that indicate that the mountains will be moved from their places, demolished and blown off their bases, becoming like carded wool on the Day of Resurrection.

Three Categories of People on the Day of Resurrection

Allah’s statement,

﴿وَكُنتُمْ أَزْوَاجاً ثَلَـثَةً ﴾

(And you (all) will be in three groups.) This means that people will be divided into three categories on the Day of Resurrection. Some will on the right of Allah’s Throne, and they are those who were brought forth from `Adam’s right side. This category will be given their Books of Records in their right hand and will be taken to the right side. As-Suddi explained that they will comprise the majority of the residents of Paradise. Another category is those who will be placed to the left of Allah’s Throne, and they are those who were brought forth from `Adam’s left side. This category will be given their Books of Records in their left hands and will be taken to the left side. They are the residents of the Fire, may Allah save us from their actions. A third category is comprised of those who are the foremost and nearest before Allah. They are in a better grade and status and nearer to Allah than those on the right side. They are the chiefs of those on the right side, because they include the Messengers, Prophets, true believers and martyrs. They are fewer than those on the right side; so Allah said,

﴿فَأَصْحَـبُ الْمَيْمَنَةِ مَآ أَصْحَـبُ الْمَيْمَنَةِ – وَأَصْحَـبُ الْمَشْـَمَةِ مَآ أَصْحَـبُ الْمَشْـَمَةِ – وَالسَّـبِقُونَ السَّـبِقُونَ ﴾

(So those on the right — how will be those on the right! And those on the left — how will be those on the left! And those foremost will be foremost.) Allah divides people into these three groups upon their death, as indicated by the end of this Surah. Allah mentioned them in His statement as well,

﴿ثُمَّ أَوْرَثْنَا الْكِتَـبَ الَّذِينَ اصْطَفَيْنَا مِنْ عِبَادِنَا فَمِنْهُمْ ظَـلِمٌ لِّنَفْسِهِ وَمِنْهُمْ مُّقْتَصِدٌ وَمِنْهُمْ سَابِقٌ بِالْخَيْرَتِ بِإِذُنِ اللَّهِ﴾

(Then We gave the Book as inheritance to such of Our servants whom We chose. Then of them are some who wrong themselves, and of them are some who follow a middle course, and of them are some who are, by Allah’s leave, foremost in good deeds.)(35:32) Muhammad bin Ka`b, Abu Hazrah Ya`qub bin Mujahid said that,

﴿وَالسَّـبِقُونَ السَّـبِقُونَ ﴾

(And those foremost will be foremost.) is about the Prophets, peace be upon them, while As-Suddi said that they are the residents of the utmost highs (Ahl Al-`Illiyyin, in Paradise). The meaning of foremost is that they were foremost in performing the acts of righteousness just as Allah commanded them,

﴿وَسَارِعُواْ إِلَى مَغْفِرَةٍ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ وَجَنَّةٍ عَرْضُهَا السَّمَـوَتُ وَالاٌّرْضُ﴾

(And march forth in the way to forgiveness from your Lord, and for Paradise as wide as the heavens and the earth.)(3:133) and,

﴿سَابِقُواْ إِلَى مَغْفِرَةٍ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ وَجَنَّةٍ عَرْضُهَا كَعَرْضِ السَّمَآءِ وَالاٌّرْضِ﴾

(Race with one another in hastening towards forgiveness from your Lord, and Paradise the width whereof is as the width of the heaven and the earth.)(57:21) Therefore, those who rush to obey Allah in this life and are foremost in performing acts of righteousness, will be among the foremost believers honored in the Hereafter. Verily, the reward is according to the kind of deed, and as one does, so he is judged. So Allah said:

﴿أُوْلَـئِكَ الْمُقَرَّبُونَ فِى جَنَّـتِ النَّعِيمِ ﴾

(These will be the nearest (to Allah). In the Gardens of Delight.)

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