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Everything (that exists) will perish except His own Face

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Quran 28:88:

And call not, besides Allah, on another god. There is no god but He. Everything (that exists) will perish except His own Face. To Him belongs the Command, and to Him will ye (all) be brought back.

According to “In the Shade of the Quran”,

“Everything is bound to perish except Himself” Indeed
everything else will die and perish: wealth, position, authority, power, life and its
comforts, the whole earth, the heavens and all creatures in them, as well as the entire
universe we know or do not know about. All will perish and only God, the
Everlasting, will remain. “With Him rests all judgement.” He judges as He pleases. No
one is party to His judgement, and none can impede or abrogate His verdict.

Ali Unal writes,

At this point, a question should be asked Does Everything is perishable (and so perishing), except His Face (28: 88) also include Paradise and Hell, and their inhabitants?


Said Nursi makes the following explanation in answer to this question:
Many qualified scholars, saints, and people of deep perception and insight have discussed
this subject. Some maintain that the inhabitants of the permanent world are not included,
while others hold that these people will also enter annihilation, albeit for such a brief period that they will not feel it.

T.O. Shanavas writes,

When the collapse of the universe is complete, all the matter in the universe will be compressed into a single point. At this point of infinite space-time curvature, every atom and every particle in our universe will be crushed out of existence. This point
becomes a state of singularity—a single point of space and time, where density and temperature become infinite and theories of science become invalid. One might speculate that there would be new laws that worked in singularities, but, according to Stephen Hawking, it would be highly problematic even to formulate such laws at such unruly points, and our observations would not help us to define what those laws might
be. Whether the universe will rise again phoenix-like from the singularity is not known. Should the universe rise again, Carl Sagan asked, what would be the nature and properties of the new universe?

Would the laws of physics and chemistry that would
govern the new universe be different? In the universe that springs out of the big crunch, would there be stars and galaxies, or something quite different? The following Qur’anic verse seems to introduce, in the layman’s language of the Arab, our current scientific prediction of the coming big crunch, and answers the above questions:

The day when We shall roll up the heaven as a scroll is rolled for writings; as We originated first creation, so We shall bring it back again—a promise binding on Us; So We shall do.(Qur’an 21:104)

The literal meaning of this verse above suggests a new universe will
spring out of the singularity. Similarly, the following Qur’anic verse could be the answer to Carl Sagan’s questions:

On the day when earth is changed into different earth and heavens into new heavens, Mankind shall stand before God, the One, who conquers all.
(Qur’an 14:48)

The verse suggests that, after the big crunch, the newly created
universe will be based on new laws of physics and chemistry and may be based on different mathematics. Two plus two may not become four.

Anisur Rahman writes,

  1. Allah (SWT) says, “Unto Him is the return of all of you; it is a promise of Allah in truth. Lo. He produceth creation, then reproduceth it…” (The Noble Koran☐0:4)
  2. “On the day when We will roll up heaven like the rolling up of the scroll for writings, as We originated the first creation, (so) We shall reproduce it; a promise (binding on Us); surely We will bring it about” (The Noble Koran 21:104

If we consider the above two Noble verses, it is very clear that as Allah (SWT) created the Universe initially, after collapsing the Universe, He will just repeat the sequences to recreate all (universe, human beings etc.)

 Scientists have suggested that the Universe started via the “ Big Bang” and will collapse via a “Big Crunch”. Then the whole process will start all over again.

According to this theory, the Universe may not have begun in a single Big Bang, but may be only part of an endless cycle of expansion and rebirth.


Entering the Gardens of Paradise is not the End


After allotting people “Hell” or “Paradise”, the job of God is not over.
You read: “On this Day, the owners of Paradise will be occupied (in
their pursuits), rejoicing,”
إ) 36:55). In
other words, the life in paradise will not be one of inaction:

“But for those who take their Lord as a shield, there awaits them
lofty mansions, story upon story with streams running beneath
them” (39:20)

The “lofty mansions, story upon story,” are a reference to an endless
advancement in heavenly life. Entering the “Gardens of Eternity” is
not the end of our journey, and the job of Allâh is not over. Even after
entering paradise, you will not stop traveling. Crossing from your
grave to the way station of resurrection, you will be carried to the
abode of your felicity. You shall have positions and ranks with your
Lord according to the worth of your deeds (46:19) and knowledge.
Then from there you will embark on another never-ending journey:

“On that day (when human beings will be raised to life again)
Allâh will not disgrace the Prophet nor those who have believed
with him. Their light [nûr] will advance swiftly (radiating) in
front of them and on their right hands while they will go on
(praying and) saying, Our Lord! (Continue to) perfect our light
for us [atmim lanâ nûranâ] and protect us (against our lapses).
Verily You are the Possessor of prudential power to do every
desired thing.” (66:8)

In the language of the Saints, the Gardens of Paradise will be the
Gardens of Divine Attributes (Jannât al-Siffât-i-Ilȃhî), where there
will be roaming freely in the meadows with running streams of Divine
Converse. The progress therein shall be perpetual until you arrive at
attributes that fall short of His Attributes. Those who reach close to
the Divine Essence (ma‘rifat al-Dhât) will embrace the least glimmer
of the Most-Radiant Light, which is concealed behind the Veil of
Protecting Might (hijâb al-‘Izza). Allâh invites us all to His Garden:

“Wing your way to the protection of your Lord and to the
Paradise whose expanse is as (vast as) the heavens and the
earth” (3:133)

(Allamah Nooridin, Commentary and Reflections, pg.193-194)

References:

NOORUDDÎN ,ALLÂMAH. (2015). Exegesis of The Holy Qur’ân Commentary and Reflections. http://www.islamicweblibrary.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Exegesis-of-the-Holy-Quran-Commentary-and-Reflections.pdf

Qutb. In the Shade of the Quran. ([sura 28] pg. 228). http://www.islamicweblibrary.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/Full-Vol.pdf

Rahman,Dr. Md. Anisur. Quran and Modern Science (pp. 52-53). Unknown. Kindle Edition.

Unal, Ali (2006). The Quran with Annotated Interpretation in Modern English. (pg. 767)  http://www.islamicweblibrary.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/The-quran-with-annotated-interpretation-.pdf.

Wynn Sr., Charles M.. And God said, “Let there be evolution!” (p. 132 – 136). All Things That Matter Press. Kindle Edition.

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