Chapters from the Koran.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.
The Chapter of the Inevitable
When the inevitable happens; none shall call its happening a lie!—abasing—exalting!
When the earth shall quake, quaking! and the mountains shall crumble, crumbling, and become like motes dispersed!
And ye shall be three sorts;
And the fellows of the right hand—what right lucky fellows!
And the fellows of the left hand—what unlucky fellows!
And the foremost foremost!
These are they who are brought nigh,
In gardens of pleasure!
A crowd of those of yore,
And a few of those of the latter day!
And gold-weft couches, reclining on them face to face.
Around them shall go eternal youths, with goblets and ewers and a cup of flowing wine; no headache shall they feel therefrom, nor shall their wits be dimmed!
And fruits such as they deem the best;
And flesh of fowl as they desire;
And bright and large-eyed maids like hidden pearls;
A reward for that which they have done!
They shall hear no folly there and no sin;
Only the speech, ‘Peace, Peace!’
And the fellows of the right—what right lucky fellows!
Amid thornless lote trees.
And tal‘h trees with piles of fruit;
And outspread shade,
And water out-poured;
And fruit in abundance, neither failing nor forbidden;
And beds upraised!
Verily, we have produced them a production.
A crowd of those of yore, and a crowd of those of the latter day!
And the fellows of the left—what unlucky fellows!
In hot blasts and boiling water;
And a shade of pitchy smoke,
Neither cool nor generous!
Verily, they were affluent ere this, and did persist in mighty crime; and used to say, ‘What, when we die and have become dust and bones, shall we then indeed be raised? or our fathers of yore?’
Say, ‘Verily, those of yore and those of the latter day shall surely be gathered together unto the tryst of the well-known day.’
Then ye, O ye who err! who say it is a lie! shall eat of the Zaqqûm tree! and fill your bellies with it! and drink thereon of boiling water! and drink as drinks the thirsty camel.
This is their entertainment on the judgment day!
We created you, then why do ye not credit?
Have ye considered what ye emit?
Do we create it, or are we the creators?
We have decreed amongst you death; but we are not forestalled from making the likes of you in exchange, or producing you as ye know not of.
Ye do know the first production—why then do ye not mind?
Have ye considered what ye till?
Do ye make it bear seed, or do we make it bear seed?
If we pleased we could make it mere grit, so that ye would pause to marvel:
‘Verily, we have got into debt and we are excluded.’
Have ye considered the water which ye drink?
Do ye make it come down from the clouds, or do we make it come down?
If we pleased we could make it pungent—why then do ye not give thanks?
Have ye considered the fire which ye strike?
Do ye produce the tree that gives it, or do we produce it?
Then celebrate the grand name of thy Lord!
So I will not swear by the positions of the stars; and, verily, it is a grand oath if ye did but know—that, verily, this is the honourable Qur’ân—in the laid-up Book!
Let none touch it but the purified!
A revelation from the Lord of the worlds.
What! this new discourse will ye despise?
And make for your provision, that you call it a lie?
Why then—when it comes up to the throat, and ye at that time look on, though we are nearer to him than you are, but ye cannot see,—why, if ye are not to be judged, do ye not send it back, if ye do tell the truth?
But either, if he be of those brought nigh to God,—then rest and fragrance and the garden of pleasure!
Or, if he be of the fellows of the right! then ‘Peace to thee!’ from the fellows of the right!
Or, if he be of those who say it is a lie,—who err! then an entertainment of boiling water! and broiling in hell!
Verily, this is surely certain truth!
So celebrate the grand name of thy Lord!