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Select Translation What is This? Selections include: The Koran Interpreted, a translation by A.J. Arberry, first published 1955; The Qur'an, translated by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem, published 2004; or side-by-side comparison view
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The Koran Interpreted Translation by A.J. Arberry

22 THE PILGRIMAGE (1 – 26)

The Qurʾan Translation by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem

22. The Pilgrimage (1 – 24)

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate

O men, fear your Lord! Surely the earthquake of the Hour is a mighty thing; on the day when you behold it, every suckling woman shall neglect the child she has suckled, and every pregnant woman shall deposit her burden, and thou shalt see mankind drunk, yet they are not drunk, but God's chastisement is terrible.

And among men there is such a one that disputes concerning God without knowledge and follows every rebel Satan, against whom it is written down that whosoever takes him for a friend, him he leads astray, and he guides him to the chastisement of the burning. 5O men, if you are in doubt as to the Upraising, surely We created you of dust then of a sperm-drop, then of a blood clot, then of a lump of flesh, formed and unformed that We may make clear to you. And We establish in the wombs what We will, till a stated term, then We deliver you as infants, then that you may come of age; and some of you die, and some of you are kept back unto the vilest state of life, that after knowing somewhat, they may know nothing. And thou beholdest the earth blackened, then, when We send down water upon it, it quivers, and swells, and puts forth herbs of every joyous kind. That is because God—He is the Truth, and brings the dead to life, and is powerful over everything, and because the Hour is coming, no doubt of it, and God shall raise up whosoever is within the tombs.

And among men there is such a one that disputes concerning God without knowledge or guidance, or an illuminating Book, turning his side to lead astray from God's way; for him is degradation in this world, and on the Resurrection Day We shall let him taste the chastisement of the burning: 10‘That is for what thy hands have forwarded and for that God is never unjust unto His servants.’

And among men there is such a one as serves God upon the very edge— if good befalls him he is at rest in it, but if a trial befalls him he turns completely over; he loses this world and the world to come; that is indeed the manifest loss. He calls, apart from God, upon that which hurts him not, and which neither profits him anything; that is indeed the far error. He calls upon him who is likelier to hurt him, rather than to profit him— an evil protector indeed, he, an evil friend!

God shall surely admit those who believe and do righteous deeds into gardens underneath which rivers flow; surely God does that He desires.

15Whosoever thinks God will not help him in the present world and the world to come, let him stretch up a rope to heaven, then let him sever it, and behold whether his guile does away with what enrages him.

Even so We have sent it down as signs, clear signs, and for that God guides whom He desires. Surely they that believe, and those of Jewry, the Sabaeans, the Christians, the Magians and the idolaters—God shall distinguish between them on the Day of Resurrection; assuredly God is witness over everything. Hast thou not seen how to God bow all who are in the heavens and all who are in the earth, the sun and the moon, the stars and the mountains, the trees and the beasts, and many of mankind? And many merit the chastisement; and whom God abases, there is none to honour him. God does whatsoever He will.

20These are two disputants who have disputed concerning their Lord. As for the unbelievers, for them garments of fire shall be cut, and there shall be poured over their heads boiling water whereby whatsoever is in their bellies and their skins shall be melted; for them await hooked iron rods; as often as they desire in their anguish to come forth from it, they shall be restored into it, and: ‘Taste the chastisement of the burning!’ God shall surely admit those who believe and do righteous deeds into gardens underneath which rivers flow; therein they shall be adorned with bracelets of gold and with pearls, and their apparel there shall be of silk; and they shall be guided unto goodly speech, and they shall be guided unto the path of the All-laudable. 25Those who disbelieve, and bar from God's way and the Holy Mosque that We have appointed equal unto men, alike him who cleaves to it and the tent-dweller, and whosoever purposes to violate it wrongfully, We shall let him taste a painful chastisement.

A Medinan sura that gets its title from the reference to the sacred rite of the pilgrimage first enacted by Abraham (verse 27). This theme is introduced by the condemnation of those who bar the believers from access to the Sacred Mosque and is followed by permission to fight when attacked. The sura begins with the Day of Judgement and castigates those who worship useless idols, describing them later as powerless to create even a fly. The sura ends by urging the Muslims to persevere in following the faith of Abraham.

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

1People, be mindful of your Lord, for the earthquake of the Last Hour will be a mighty thing: 2on the Day you see it, every nursing mother will think no more of her baby, every pregnant female will miscarry, you will think people are drunk when they are not, so severe will be God's torment.3Yet still there are some who, with no knowledge, argue about God, who follow every devilish rebel 4fated to lead astray those who take his side, and guide them to the suffering of the blazing flame.

5People, [remember,] if you doubt the Resurrection, that We created you from dust, then a drop of fluid, then a clinging form, then a lump of flesh, both shaped and unshaped: We mean to make Our power clear to you. Whatever We choose We cause to remain in the womb for an appointed time, then We bring you forth as infants and then you grow and reach maturity. Some die young and some are left to live on to such an age that they forget all they once knew. You sometimes see the earth lifeless, yet when We send down water it stirs and swells and produces every kind of joyous growth: 6this is because God is the Truth; He brings the dead back to life; He has power over everything.

7There is no doubt that the Last Hour is bound to come, nor that God will raise the dead from their graves, 8yet still there are some who, with no knowledge or guidance or any book of enlightenment, argue about God,9turning scornfully aside to lead others away from God's path. Disgrace in this world awaits such a person and, on the Day of Resurrection, We shall make him taste the suffering of the Fire. 10[It will be said], ‘This is for what you have stored up with your own hands: God is never unjust to His creatures.’

11There are also some who serve God with unsteady faith: if something good comes their way, they are satisfied, but if they are tested, they revert to their old ways, losing both this world and the next—that is the clearest loss.12Instead of God, they call upon what can neither harm nor help them—that is straying far away—13or invoke one whose harm is closer than his help: an evil master and an evil companion. 14But God will admit those who believe and do good deeds to Gardens graced with flowing streams. God does whatever He wishes. 15Anyone who thinks that God will not support him in this world and the next should stretch a rope up to the sky, climb all the way up it,a See also 6: 35. Another interpretation of this verse is ‘stretch a rope up to the ceiling and hang himself’. and see whether this strategy removes the cause of his anger. 16In this way, We send the Qurʾan down as clear messages, and God guides whoever He will.

17As for the believers, those who follow the Jewish faith, the Sabians,b See note to 2: 62. the Christians, the Magians,c Followers of an ancient Persian and Median religion, based on monotheism, identified with Zoroastrians. and the idolaters, God will judge between them on the Day of Resurrection; God witnesses all things. 18Do you not realize [Prophet] that everything in the heavens and earth submitsd Literally, prostrates. to God: the sun, the moon, the stars, the mountains, the trees, and the animals? So do many human beings, though for many others punishment is well deserved. Anyone disgraced by God will have no one to honour him: God does whatever He will. 19These two kinds of people disagree about their Lord. Garments of fire will be tailored for those who disbelieve; scalding water will be poured over their heads,20melting their insides as well as their skins; 21there will be iron crooks to restrain them; 22whenever, in their anguish, they try to escape, they will be pushed back in and told, ‘Taste the suffering of the Fire.’ 23But God will admit those who believe and do good deeds to Gardens graced with flowing streams; there they will be adorned with golden bracelets and pearls; there they will have silken garments. 24They were guided to good speech and to the path of the One Worthy of all Praise.

Notes:

a See also 6: 35. Another interpretation of this verse is ‘stretch a rope up to the ceiling and hang himself’.

b See note to 2: 62.

c Followers of an ancient Persian and Median religion, based on monotheism, identified with Zoroastrians.

d Literally, prostrates.

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