Exposition of the Holy Quran – 88 Al-Ghaashiyah (G A Parwez)

Surah 88: Al-Ghaashiyah

(The Overpowering)


(1) Should We tell you about the universal revolution that will prevail over all these people (who are planning to subvert it)?

(2) (At that time) People will be split into two groups. The faces of one group will be depressed and downcast with humiliation and shame;

(3) The end result of all their efforts and labour would only be weariness and fatigue. (This is because they followed a wrong path; and although the one who does so, becomes weary and fatigued, he does not reach his destination.)

(4) Their erroneous way of life will take them to the jahannam of a blazing fire.

(5) In jahannam, water from a boiling spring will be given to them to drink. Instead of quenching their thirst it will inflame it further,

(6) To eat they will get bitter, smelly and thorny bushes thrown on to the shore by the sea. (This is similar to the leftovers of large nations, which are thrown, as charity, towards backward nations. What a degrading help!)

(7) This neither provides nourishment, nor does it satisfy hunger.

(8) (On the contrary) People of the other group will have all the pleasures and comforts of life; and

(9) The results of their efforts would conform to their wishes!

(10) They shall be in a blissful and sublime heavenly society which will amply reflect their high status. In addition to being at this high status, they will receive comforts and luxuries.

(11) There they will not hear anything absurd!

(12) Out of the overflowing springs of life, they will obtain invigorating drinks (76:16-17).

(13) They will be enthroned on elevated couches of authority and power;

(14-16)  They will have neatly set goblets for drinking; and high quality carpets with cushions set in rows, for sitting.

(17) (The reality of how a society functioning according to the divine laws produces wonderful results, can only be understood and appreciated by one who ponders over how perfectly the outer universe works according to the divine laws, producing excellent results. For this purpose) They should see:

(i) How water-laden clouds are formed. (The salty sea water is turned into clear and sweet water; and clouds suspended all around become sources of subsistence for the whole world.)

(18) (ii) And how the huge cosmic bodies suspended in space continue to revolve;

(19) (iii) And how the lofty mountains stay firmly fixed (while the earth rotates so fast).

(20) (iv) And how (beautifully) the earth itself is spread out (so that you do not even feel that it is spherical and is continuously in motion).

(21) (After inviting their attention to these wonderful phenomena of nature) You should present Qur’anic teachings to them; for it is your duty and responsibility to present the Qur’an.

(22) (But do not force them to accept the same as) You have not been appointed a warden over them.

(23) (Just present the Qur’an before them) Thereafter, whoever turns his back and refuses to follow this book,

(24) According to the divine Law of Mukafat, he will be caught in a great chastisement.

(25) (They cannot escape the consequences of rejecting these laws.) Every step of theirs takes them towards that law. They just cannot go anywhere else.

(26) And verily, the accountability of every action will be done according to that law; and that is bound to happen!

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