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Quran Chapter 81 - Shrouded in Darkness - The Reality of the Day of Resurrection

A Meccan sura stressing the fact that people will be confronted by their deeds on Judgement Day, asserting the truth of the Quran, and calling people to the right path. It opens with a powerful description of events on that Day, and the title of the sura is taken from this description.

In the name of God, the Lord of Mercy, the Giver of Mercy

1 When the sun is shrouded in darkness, 2 when the stars are dimmed, 3 when the mountains are set in motion, 4 when pregnant camels are abandoned, 5 when wild beasts are herded together, 6 when the seas boil over, 7 when souls are sorted into classes, 8 when the baby girl buried alive is asked 9 for what sin she was killed, [a] 10 when the records of deeds are spread open, 11 when the sky is stripped away, 12 when Hell is made to blaze 13 and Paradise brought near: 14 then every soul will know what it has brought about.

15 I swear by the planets 16 that recede, move, and hide, 17 by the night that descends, 18 by the dawn that softly breathes: 19 this is the speech of a noble messenger, [b] 20 who possesses great strength and is held in honor by the Lord of the Throne–– 21 he is obeyed there and worthy of trust. 22 Your companion [c] is not mad: 23 he did see him [d] on the clear horizon. 24 He does not withhold what is revealed to him from beyond. 25 This is not the word of an outcast devil.

26 So where are you [people] going? 27 This is a message for all people; 28 for those who wish to take the straight path. 29 But you will only wish to do so by the will of God, the Lord of all people.


a. Cf. 16: 58–9. The pagan Arab habit of female infanticide.

b. Gabriel.

c. Addressed to the Meccans. The companion is the Prophet.

d. Gabriel.

The Qur'an (Oxford World's Classics)

The Qur'an / a new translation by M. A. S. Abdel Haleem, copyright © 2004 Oxford World's Classics (Oxford University Press). Used by permission. All rights reserved.



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