And the Hour is coming without any doubt,
and Allah will raise up all those in the graves. (Surat al-Hajj,
Death is coming closer by the day. Whether you are
young or old, death is a little closer to you every day, even every
minute. You cannot resist time or prevent death's approach. Nothing
you do can change the fact that you and those close to you are only
"temporary" beings. Like every other living being, you are advancing
toward the Day on which your life will end.
Humanity is not the only part of creation that is subject to death.
All other creatures, Earth itself and the whole universe, have a
day of death fixed for them. The Day of Judgment is a day of terror
and unimaginable fear. But at the same time, it is most wondrous.
Everything on Earth will be flattened, the stars will be extinguished
and fall in rapid succession, and the Sun will be wrapped up in
darkness. All human beings who have ever lived will be gathered
and made to witness this Day. This Final Day will be dreadful for
the unbelievers, and its Lord will be Allah, Who owns all that exists.
The Day of Judgment, contrary to many people's belief, is approaching;
it is not in the distant future. When it arrives, Earth and everything
belonging to it will be destroyed. Ambitions, desires, anger, expectations,
lusts, enmities, and pleasures will cease. Plans made for the future
will become meaningless, for those who had forgotten that they will
be returned to Allah, preferring this world over the eternal life
and its misleading wealth, beauty, and pleasures, will have met
their end. On this Day, everyone will witness clearly Allah's existence
and will come face to face with the death that they had tried so
hard to forget. Their attempt to forget Allah and the Hereafter
is finished, and a new beginning, one which will be eternal and
bring no happiness to the unbelievers, is awaiting them. From the
very first moment of this eternal life, the punishment is so fearsome
that those who experience it will beg for "death" and "annihilation."
The beginning of this life is the Day of Judgment and, "the Hour
is coming without any doubt."
LIFE ON EARTH IS TEMPORARY, AND
DEATH IS A CERTAIN REALITY
From your earliest childhood onwards, you head for
certain goals or are guided by others. You probably will have a
family and a job, try to earn more in order to have a better life,
educate your children, and hope that they will have a better life
than you did. Once a week you meet the other members of your extended
family. You take vacations, go to work, and spend the rest of your
time at home. Except for a few hiccups on the way, your life progresses
orderly and you usually encounter nothing outside the ordinary.
Everything in your life seems to be premeditated, and everyone's
life is like everyone else's. You need to work to realize these
goals, and you need to have a family to continue your lineage. According
to this worldview, what else could you possibly want besides "a
good job" and "a nice family?" Having achieved these goals, you
expect to lead a happy life. In this way, everything is wonderful
and you will live happily ever after.
However, some important changes are happening in your body and environment.
Many cells with diverse functions fulfill their purpose and die.
As you age, it becomes harder to replace them. Your body is ageing
visibly, as seen through your illnesses and weaknesses. Time moves
fast, and the impossibility of reversing it becomes clearer every
day. Thinking that you were going to live happily and comfortably
forever, you are nevertheless nearing death. Thus, this worldly
life can never give the sense of contentment and peace you expect.
When this "satisfying" life ends, you will come face to face with
the real truth. Given this fact, none of your life ambitions should
become your true purpose in life. This life is a temporary trial
to separate the righteous from the evildoers. Allah reveals this
reality in the following verse:
He Who created death and life to test which of you
is best in action. He is the Almighty, the Ever-Forgiving. (Surat
The true purpose of life is not a decent job and a
nice family. Rather, everybody has been created for one purpose:
to serve Allah. We become attached to our children, rank, and status
but with the first instance of death, these worldly pleasures lose
their value and importance. Everybody knows this, but many choose
to ignore it. And so such things should not be the ultimate goals
of life. We must reflect carefully and realize what is the real
purpose and the true gain. Allah reveals the true purpose of our
creation, as follows:
I only created jinn and man to worship Me. (Surat adh-Dhariyat,
Only by fulfilling this responsibility can we expect
the gifts of the Hereafter. Most people have some unfounded expectations
and comfort themselves with them. But this is a great error. If
one has nothing to expect from the Hereafter, there is only one
possibility left: To become nothing with death, a possibility that
is scarier than all the others. The unbelievers develop various
methods of forgetting this possibility, because they fear it so
much. Among these methods are not talking about, discussing, or
remembering death, even though it is a certainty for everyone. Everybody
acts as if it does not exist. That most people behave in such a
way might be reassuring to some extent, but in reality they are
all misguided. People know about death, the Last Day, and the Hereafter,
but refuse to ponder them. They are satisfied with this worldly
life, or at least make themselves believe that they are. However,
Allah reveals that death will find everyone:
Say: "Death, from which you are fleeing, will certainly
catch up with you. Then you will be returned to the Knower of the
Unseen and the Visible, and He will inform you about what you did."
(Surat al-Jumu‘a, 8)
The universe and all of its contents, not just humanity,
will die on the Day of Judgment, for on that Day the trial will
end. Many people will recognize its coming by its signs, and the
events leading up to the universe's death will be literally hair-raising.
Finally, on that Day, Allah will raise up all those in the graves
and all people on the Earth will be called to account. Those who
did not expect to experience such a Day will no longer be able to
deny it, and so will bow to Allah's will whether they want to or
not. Allah has prepared a spectacular end for the universe, and
despite most people's attempts to deny this reality, the Day of
Judgment will come at its appointed time.