Splittig of the moon (Surah Al-Qamar) - refuting stereo types by Islamophobes

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The misinterpretations of the Noble the Quran arises on the basis of peoples' meddling with the forgeries of the Hadith institution which is NO part of Islam.  Furthermore, these forgeries are often used by Islamophobes to ridicule or attack Islam.  For instance, quoting an Islamophobe:  "The hadiths explain that the splitting of the moon was one of a number of miracles performed by God during the time of Muhammad, and its purpose was to help convince people that he was a prophet." This person completely ignores the glaring references to the truth and reality in the first 8 Verses of Surah Al-Qamar and stubbornly keeps up his campaign to lambaste the Noble Quran on the basis of the myths of Hadith - an institution flatly unwarranted by the Quran.  Islam is ONLY and ONLY the QURAN.   Thus, let me be very clear right at the start.  If you are rolling up your sleeves to throw into a fit over the first 8 Verses of Surah Al-Qamar (splitting of the moon) based on the Hadith stories, then thank you very much!  Your argument has NO value with us because it's based on a falsehood to begin with.  But if you are frowning over the first 8 Verses of Surah Al-Qamar after being focused only on the Quran, discarding all extra-Quranic tales, then let me clarify the matter as follows.

First I'll post Verses 1-8 of Surah Al-Qamar in original Arabic followed by its word by word English translation from Corpus Quran.  Then, the English translation of the Verses 1-8 of Surah Al-Qamar by Abdel Haleem, followed by the English translations of the first Verse of Surah Al-Qamar by several recognized translators.

Original Arabic of Surah Al-Qamar Verses 1 to 8:

"Aqtarabati As-Sā`atu Wa Anshaqqa Al-Qamaru
Wa 'In Yaraw 'Āyatan Yu`riđū Wa Yaqūlū Siĥrun Mustamirrun
Wa Kadhdhabū Wa Attaba`ū 'Ahwā'ahum ۚ Wa Kullu 'Amrin Mustaqirrun
Wa Laqad Jā'ahum Mina Al-'Anbā'i Mā Fīhi Muzdajarun
Ĥikmatun Bālighatun ۖ Famā Tughni An-Nudhuru
Fatawalla `Anhum ۘ Yawma Yad`u Ad-Dā`i 'Ilá Shay'in Nukurin
Khushsha`āan 'Abşāruhum Yakhrujūna Mina Al-'Ajdāthi Ka'annahum Jarādun Muntashirun
Muhţi`īna 'Ilá Ad-Dā`i ۖ Yaqūlu Al-Kāfirūna Hādhā Yawmun `Asirun "
Surah Al-Qamar (54:1-8).

Word by word English translation Corpus Quran:

"Has come near the Hour and has split the moon.
And if they see a Sign (ayatan), they turn away and say, "magic continuing"
And they denied and followed their desires,
but (for) every matter (will be a) settlement.
And certainly has come to them of the information wherein wherein is deterrence,
Wisdom perfect, but not will avail the warnings.
So turn away from them.  (The) Day, will call the caller to a thing terrible,
(will be) humbled their eyes they will come forth from the graves as if they (were) locusts spreading,
Racing ahead towards the caller.  Will say the disbelievers "This (is) a Day difficult."

English Translation Abdel Haleem:

"The Hour draws near; the moon is split in two.
Whenever the disbelievers see a sign, they turn away and say, ‘Same old sorcery!’
They reject the truth and follow their own desires––everything is recorded––
although warning information that should have restrained them have come down to them––
far-reaching wisdom––but these warnings do not help:
so [Prophet] turn away from them. On the Day the Summoner will summon them to a horrific event,
eyes downcast, they will come out of their graves like swarming locusts
rushing towards the Summoner. The disbelievers will cry, ‘This is a stern day!’ "
Surah Al-Qamr - 54:1-8.

English translation of Verse 54:1 by various recognized translators:

THE LAST HOUR draws near, and the moon is split asunder!

Muhammad Sarwar:
The Hour of Doom is drawing near and the moon is rent asunder.

The Monotheist Group:
The Hour draws near, and the moon is breached.

T.B. Irving:
The Hour approaches and the Moon is splitting apart!

Al-Muntakhab Online Quran Project:
The final hour, (that is the Day of Judgment), is drawing near and the moon will be cleft asunder

The hour drew nigh and the moon was rent in twain.

Okay .... so the question is, did the moon appear split into two in Mecca before the Hijrah of the Prophet (pbuh), or is Verse 54:1 speaking of the future event - the Day of Resurrection?

Let's get down to identifying the fact, head-on, solely by focusing on the Noble Quran.   

"The Hour" refers to the Day of Judgement, the Last Day or the Day of Resurrection, the time when the present world will end and the Hereafter will begin.  On the Last Day nothing of the earth nor the universe will be safe from destruction.   The moon will certainly be annihilated.  The entire event as described in Verses 54:1-8 refers to the Day of Judgement or the Last Day, NOT to any earthly incident during the time of the Prophet (pbuh) nor any other time.

The same occurrence is also mentioned in Chapter 84:1, Surah Al-Inshiqaq referring to the heavens or the sky.  Quoting Verses 84:1-2; "When the heaven is split asunder And attentive to her Lord in fear," also similarly refers to the Destruction of the Earth or the Day of Judgement and likely the destruction of the entire solar system and beyond (only Allah knows best of the extent of destruction on the Day of the Tryst).

Translator Yusuf Ali's largely cater to the contents of Hadith and influenced by Hadith stories which accounts for the numerous inaccuracies in his English translations that are commonly put within brackets.  According to Yusuf Ali's commentary taken from some Hadith narrations, the moon once appeared cleft asunder in the valley of Mecca within sight of the Prophet, his companions and some disbelievers.  This story is totally unwarranted by the Quran.  Another one claims that the disbelievers of Mecca once challenged the Prophet (pbuh) to show them a miracle as test of Prophethood during a full moon night outside, and the Prophet (pbuh) pointed to the moon which split in two pieces with the Cave of Hira in between.  Again, very obviously this story too is not at all supported by the Quran.  There are many similar tales about these Verses.  But if you concentrate just a little on the contents of the Quran, you will clearly perceive that these narrations have little or no compatibility with the Noble Quran.

Muhammad Asad, another Quran translator who although a Hadith follower has, in his commentary, totally rejected the Hadith-based interpretations of Verses 54:1-8 refer to any strange appearances of the moon on the sky during the lifetime of the Prophet(pbuh).  I quote his commentary on this topic as follows:  ".... it is practically certain that the above Qur'an-verse does not refer to it but, rather, to a future event: namely, to what will happen when the Last Hour approaches. (The Qur'an frequently employs the past tense to denote the future, and particularly so in passages which speak of the coming of the Last Hour and of Resurrection Day; this use of the past tense is meant to stress the certainty of the happening to which the verb relates.) Thus, Raghib regards it as fully justifiable to interpret the phrase inshaqqa 'l -qamar ("the moon is split asunder") as bearing on the cosmic cataclysm - the end of the world as we know it - that will occur before the coming of Resurrection Day."

The Concise Encyclopedia of Islam too considers Verse 54:1 as a future event.  It states in page 274:  "There are no contemporary accounts of such an event .. that the Koran is speaking allegorically of a sign of the Last Day, rather than of a miracle."

Furthermore, despite being a Hadithist, Yusuf Ali has himself stated in another commentary of his, the possibility of the prophetic past indicating the future and cleaving asunder of the moon being a Sign of the Judgement approaching.  Well, this explanation is not just a possibility, rather it is the confirmed truth and the only correct interpretation.

I repeat, Verses 54:1-8 refer to the Day of Judgement, NOT to the Hadith stories of the moon appearing broken on the sky nor do these Verses refer to any strange looking eclipses of the moon.  Though during a lunar eclipse the moon often looks into two halves with shadows moving back and forth appearing strange and eerie, sometimes acquiring a dark hue, sometimes a reddish glow engulfed in the earth's shadow ... this is a separate matter and a different heavenly phenomenon ordained by The Almighty.   Alhudulilah.  It has NOTHING to do with Verses 54:1-8.

The moon being split asunder is one of the occurrences on that Final Day along with many other destructions.  The fact that Verse 1 of Surah Al-Qamar is a direct reference to the Day of Judgement is ample clear, particularly after you read the entire passage from Verses 1 to 8.  The passage is so straight and simple that I don't think I even need to explain it.  Kindly read the English translation of the Verses quoted above.

It's a part of the Quran's style that make up many of its prophecies to speak of future events as accomplished or in the present tense.  For example you will notice the same style in Surah Al-Sharh (Chapter 94), Verses 1 to 4, quote:  "Have We not caused your bosom to dilate, And eased you of the burden Which weighed down your back; And exalted your fame?"  These Quranic lines are addressed to the Prophet (pbuh).  This Surah is one of the early ones revealed before the Hijrah in Mecca when the Prophet (pbuh) had begun his mission.  It was particularly a difficult time for him when he was facing abundance of opposition and threats from the disbelievers.  The sentence  "... exalted your fame?" at a time such as that would make no sense to anyone because the Prophet (pbuh) was then being insulted, derided and shunned by majority of the Meccans with only a very small group of followers.  But the Quran prophecies the Prophet's (pbuh) future in this Verse as something already accomplished.  By the end of his lifetime he had a huge following and was widely popular.  Soon after the Prophet (pbuh) passed away, his fame rose far and wide and remains up to this day, never to be erased.  This is just a single example.  There are several confirmations and descriptions of the future in the Quran, referred either as past or present.  Verse 54:1 of Surah Al-Qamar is one of those where the Day of Resurrection is referred in the present tense.  References to the Day of Resurrection are often mentioned in the Noble Quraan in the past/present tense for the purpose of highlighting the certainty of this Event.

To conclude:

As we must have read oft and on, there have been several scientific works with plenty of money spent to study the internal structure of the moon and assessing its similarities with earth.  In the process, there are reports that they found a belt of rocks that went along the surface of the moon to the inner depths.  Geologists acknowledged it as puzzling with the huge possibility that this was caused after the moon, sometime in the distant past, split and re-sealed.  The rocks along the belt were explained to be a likely result of the impact during the time the two halves of the moon rejoined.  Images of the moon today do show a rocky belt extending across its length.  Whether or not this heavenly incident happened, or to what extent, are secrets of the unknown only known to Allah, The Almighty.  Let us not forget another truth, that the facts and occurrences of science are the laws and rules of universe and nature designed and created by Allah Almighty alone.   Humans have simply discovered them, and do not forget the difference between creation and discovery.  Allah creates, humans merely discover. 

Apart from the much talked about "fission" in scientific circles, researchers have confirmed the presence of craters and splits that might have been caused by quakes at the depths of the moon's surface resulting from earth's gravitational pull.  Again, the truth of such happenings are best known to Allah only and are not the topic of Verses 54:1-8 which specifically refer to the future confirmed event of the the Day of Judgement, the Day of Qiyamat.    All praise be to Allah, The Almighty.

Verses 54:1-8 DO NOT allude to any such practical displays of the moon during the Prophet's (pbuh) era.  Hence the wrangling of the Islamophobes is out of context and useless, as always.

The moon is certainly a sign of the creation of Allah The Almighty.  The moon also has various phases as ordained by The Almighty.   DO NOT admire the moon nor the sun nor the stars etc. etc. but admire the ONE Who created them .. reference V.41:37 Fussilat.   Lunar or solar eclipse is a natural phenomenon ordained by Allah Almighty.  Thus, if we see lunar or solar eclipse, that must remind us of Allah Almighty .. call upon Allah, praise Allah and make du'a to Allah.

Related posts:
-  Differing nature of light from sun and moon
-  Splitting of moon (V.54:1): Answering-Islam thinks it's linked with Hadith tales
-  Science and religion are intertwined
-  Worship the Creator NOT the creation
-  The Sun is not stationary as proven by astronomical study
-  The sun runs unto a "resting-place"
-  Any connection between full moon and human or animal behavior?
-  Full moon myths are nonsense

Salaams MV Team - Sisters and brother.  Have put up the revised post on Surah Al-Qamar with necessary additional info as requested by you.  Many thanks for sending the essential points to be included.  Allah Almighty bless all of you. 

On double checking those points, I found them spot on.  Thanks again folks.

Heba E. Husseyn:

Wa'Salam and thank you, my sis.   Was waiting for it.  That's just super! 

I've got AI's bullcrap criticism in which they have directly linked Verse 54:1 to the false hadith literature, this one, some rubbish stuff by Anas.  I'll put up that AI's bullcrap at that board and link my response with this post.


Yeah Sis Heba.   Right idea.  Please go ahead.

N. Truth Seeker:

Absolutely correct sisters.   I was reading this lovely Surah tonight.    I had read your opinion here at MV but couldn't recall the details.  Read it now.  Plenty of thanks.


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