Mircea Eliade "From Primitives to Zen": MUHAMMAD SPEAKS OF THE DAY OF DOOM


('Qur'an,' LVI, 1-55; LXIX, 14-39)

in the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate


When the Terror descends

(and none denies its descending)

abasing, exalting,

when the earth shall be rocked

and the mountains crumbled

and become a dust scattered,

and you shall be three bands-

Companions of the Right (O Companions of the Right!)

Companions of the Left (O Companions of the Left!)

and the Outstrippers: the Outstrippers

those are they brought nigh the Throne,

in the Gardens of Delight

(a throng of the ancients

and how few of the later folk)

upon close-wrought couches

reclining upon them, set face to face,

immortal youths going round about them

with goblets, and ewers, and a cup from a spring

(no brows throbbing, no intoxication)

and such fruits as then, shall choose,

and such flesh of fowl as they desire,

and wide-eyed houris

as the likeness of hidden pearls,

a recompense for that they laboured.

Therein they shall hear no idle talk, no cause of sin,

only the saying 'Peace, Peace!'

The companions of the Right (O Companions of the Right!)

mid thornless lote-trees and serried acacias,

and spreading shade and outpoured waters,

and fruits abounding

unfailing, unforbidden,

and upraised couches.

Perfectly We formed them, perfect,

and We made them spotless virgins,

chastely amorous, like of age

for the Companions of the Right.

A throng of the ancients

and a throng of the later folk.

The Companions of the Left (O Companions of the Left!)

mid burning winds and boiling waters

and the shadow of a smoking blaze

neither cool, -neither goodly;

and before that they lived at ease,

and persisted in the Great Sin,

ever saying,

'What, when we are dead and become

dust and bones, shall we indeed

be raised up?

What, and our fathers, the ancients?'

Say: 'The ancients, and the later folk

shall be gathered to the appointed time

of a known day.

Then you erring ones, you that cried lies,

you shall eat of a tree called Zakkoum,

and you shall fill therewith your bellies

and drink on top of that boiling water

lapping it down like thirsty camels.

This shall be their hospitality on the

Day of Doom. (LVI, 1-55.)

So, when the Trumpet is blown with a single blast

and the earth and the mountains are lifted up and

crushed with a single blow,

then, on that day, the Terror shall come to pass,

and heaven shall be split, for upon that day it

shall be very frail,

and the angels shall stand upon its borders, and

upon that day eight shall carry above them the

Throne of thy Lord.

On that day you shall be exposed, not one secret

of yours concealed.

Then as for him who is given his book in his right hand,

he shall say, 'Here, take and read my book! Certainly

I thought that I should encounter thy reckoning.' So he

shall be in a pleasing life

in a lofty Garden,

its clusters nigh to gather.

'Eat and drink with wholesome appetite for that you did

long ago, in the days gone by.'

But as for him who is given his book in his left hand,

he shall say, 'Would that I had not been given my book

and not known my reckoning! Would it had been the end!

My wealth has not availed me,

my authority is gone from me.'

Take him, and fetter him, and then roast him in Hell,

then in a chain of seventy cubits' length insert him!

Behold, he never believed in God the All-mighty, and

he never urged the feeding of the needy; therefore he

today has not here one loyal friend, neither any food

saving foul pus, that none excepting the sinners eat.

(LXIX, 41-39.)


Translation by A. J. Arberry

Bibliography for this page:

More on Islam:

Books by Mircea Eliade:

Death, Afterlife and Eschatology | Main Menu | Keyword Search