Dunya and akhira word count in the Qur'an

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This article lists all occurrences of the Arabic words ad-dunya (ٱلدُّنْيَا) and al-akhira (الآخرة) in the Qur'an. The translation of these words to English is complicated and is discussed in the article. These words do not appear in the dual or plural forms, so this word count will be easier and less questionable than others.

To make it clear for non-speakers of Arabic:

  • The al- (ال) prefix represents the definite article, like the "the" in English
  • The letter د (d) in dunya is from a group of letters called sun letters [1]. If a word starts with a sun letter, then the "l" in the al- prefix is replaced with the first letter of the word in pronunciation. So Al-Dunya is read as Ad-Dunya. Just like Al-Salam (peace) is read as As-Salam. The "s" here takes double time in pronunciation.

Ad-Dunya (ٱلدُّنْيَا)[edit]

The word dunya is derived from the trilateral root دنو (d-n-w). Just like from the root سلم (s-l-m) we can derive different words, like submission (al-islam, الإسلام) and peace (as-salam, السلم), from the root دنو we can also derive different words. The first word in the Qur'an with this root is adna (أَدْنَىٰ), meaning "worse":

  • Qur'an 2:61 "...exchange that which is better for that which is worse (أَدْنَىٰ, adna)..."

Words derived from this root can also have a meaning of "nearer" or "lower" or "lesser".

Here is the list of occurrences of the Arabic word dunya:

Count Verse Arabic word Translation
1 2:85 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
2 2:86 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
3 2:114 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
4 2:130 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
5 2:200 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
6 2:201 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
7 2:204 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
8 2:212 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
9 2:217 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
10 2:220 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
11 3:14 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
12 3:22 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
13 3:45 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
14 3:56 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
15 3:117 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
16 3:145 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
17 3:148 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
18 3:152 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
19 3:185 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
20 4:74 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
21 4:77 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
22 4:94 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
23 4:109 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
24 4:134 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
25 4:134 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
26 5:33 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
27 5:41 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
28 6:29 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
29 6:32 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
30 6:70 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
31 6:130 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
32 7:32 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
33 7:51 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
34 7:152 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
35 7:156 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
36 8:42 ٱلدُّنْيَا nearer
37 8:67 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
38 9:38 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
39 9:38 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
40 9:55 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
41 9:69 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
42 9:74 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
43 9:85 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
44 10:7 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
45 10:23 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
46 10:24 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
47 10:64 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
48 10:70 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
49 10:88 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
50 10:98 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
51 11:15 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
52 11:60 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
53 12:101 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
54 13:26 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
55 13:26 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
56 13:34 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
57 14:3 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
58 14:27 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
59 16:30 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
60 16:41 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
61 16:107 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
62 16:122 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
63 18:28 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
64 18:45 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
65 18:46 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
66 18:104 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
67 20:72 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
68 20:131 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
69 22:9 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
70 22:11 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
71 22:15 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
72 23:33 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
73 23:37 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
74 24:14 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
75 24:19 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
76 24:23 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
77 24:33 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
78 28:42 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
79 28:60 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
80 28:61 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
81 28:77 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
82 28:79 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
83 29:25 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
84 29:27 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
85 29:64 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
86 30:7 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
87 31:15 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
88 31:33 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
89 33:28 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
90 33:57 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
91 35:5 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
92 37:6 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
93 39:10 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
94 39:26 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
95 40:39 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
96 40:43 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
97 40:51 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
98 41:12 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
99 41:16 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
100 41:31 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
101 42:20 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
102 42:36 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
103 43:32 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
104 43:35 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
105 45:24 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
106 45:35 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
107 46:20 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
108 47:36 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
109 53:29 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
110 57:20 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
111 57:20 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
112 59:3 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
113 67:5 ٱلدُّنْيَا lower
114 79:38 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
115 87:16 ٱلدُّنْيَا this world
  • As we can see, there are two occurrences, where the word does not mean "this world" or "worldly life":
    • Verse 8:42 "When you were on the nearer side (بِٱلْعُدْوَةِ ٱلدُّنْيَا, bilAAudwati addunya) and they were on the farthest side"
    • Verse 67:5 "And certainly We have adorned this lower heaven (ٱلسَّمَآءَ ٱلدُّنْيَا, assamaa addunya) with lamps and We have made these missiles for the Shaitans..."

Al-Akhira (الآخرة)[edit]

The word الآخرة is derived from the trilateral root اخر (a-kh-r). Other derived words from this root besides "hereafter" are "last", "other", "next", "second" or "to delay". This word, unlike the first one, appears in the Qur'an with different prefixes. The list counts the basic form الآخرة separately.

Total count Verse Arabic word (الآخرة counted) Translation
1 2:4 وَبِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and of the hereafter
2 2:86 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ for the hereafter
3 2:94 ٱلْءَاخِرَةُ 1 the hereafter
4 2:102 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 2 the hereafter
5 2:114 3 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
6 2:130 4 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
7 2:200 5 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
8 2:201 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 6 the hereafter
9 2:217 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
10 2:220 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
11 3:22 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
12 3:45 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
13 3:56 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
14 3:77 7 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
15 3:85 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 8 the hereafter
16 3:145 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 9 the hereafter
17 3:148 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 10 the hereafter
18 3:152 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 11 the hereafter
19 3:176 12 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
20 4:74 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ for the hereafter
21 4:77 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةُ and the hereafter
22 4:134 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
23 5:5 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 13 the hereafter
24 5:33 14 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
25 5:41 15 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
26 6:32 16 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
27 6:92 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
28 6:113 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
29 6:150 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
30 7:45 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
31 7:147 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 17 the hereafter
32 7:156 18 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
33 7:169 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 19 the hereafter
34 8:67 20 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
35 9:38 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 21 the hereafter
36 9:38 22 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
37 9:69 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
38 9:74 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
39 10:64 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 23 the hereafter
40 11:16 24 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
41 11:19 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
42 11:22 25 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
43 11:103 26 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
44 12:37 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
45 12:57 27 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
46 12:101 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
47 12:109 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 28 the hereafter
48 13:26 29 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
49 13:34 30 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
50 14:3 31 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
51 14:27 32 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
52 16:22 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
53 16:30 33 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
54 16:41 34 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
55 16:60 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
56 16:107 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 35 the hereafter
57 16:109 36 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
58 16:122 37 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
59 17:7 38 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the second
60 17:10 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
61 17:19 39 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
62 17:21 وَلَلْءَاخِرَةُ and surely the hereafter
63 17:45 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
64 17:72 40 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
65 17:104 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 41 the hereafter
66 20:127 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 42 the hereafter
67 22:11 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةَ and the hereafter
68 22:15 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
69 23:33 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 43 the hereafter
70 23:74 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
71 24:14 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
72 24:19 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
73 24:23 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
74 27:3 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
75 27:4 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
76 27:5 44 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
77 27:66 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 45 the hereafter
78 28:70 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter (the last)
79 28:77 ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ 46 the hereafter
80 28:83 47 ٱلْءَاخِرَةُ the hereafter
81 29:20 48 ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ final
82 29:27 49 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
83 29:64 50 ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ the hereafter
84 30:7 51 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
85 30:16 52 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
86 31:4 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
87 33:29 53 ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ the hereafter
88 33:57 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةِ and the hereafter
89 34:1 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ 54 the hereafter
90 34:8 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
91 34:21 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
92 38:7 55 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the last
93 39:9 56 ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ the hereafter
94 39:26 57 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
95 39:45 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
96 40:39 58 ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ the hereafter
97 40:43 59 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
98 41:7 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
99 41:16 60 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
100 41:31 61 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
101 42:20 62 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
102 42:20 63 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
103 43:35 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةُ and the hereafter
104 53:25 ٱلْءَاخِرَةُ 64 the hereafter (the last)
105 53:27 بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ in the hereafter
106 57:20 65 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
107 59:3 66 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
108 60:13 67 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
109 68:33 68 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
110 74:53 69 ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ the hereafter
111 75:21 70 ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ the hereafter
112 79:25 71 ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ the hereafter
113 87:17 وَٱلْءَاخِرَةُ while the hereafter
114 92:13 لَلْءَاخِرَةَ surely the hereafter
115 93:4 وَلَلْءَاخِرَةُ and surely the hereafter
  • As we can see, there are occurrences where this word doesn't mean "hereafter":
    • Verse 17:7 "If you do good, you will do good for your own souls, and if you do evil, it shall be for them. So when the second promise (وَعْدُ ٱلْءَاخِرَةِ, waAAdu alakhirati) came (We raised another people) that they may bring you to grief ..."
    • Verse 29:20 "Say: Travel in the earth and see how He makes the first creation, then Allah creates the latter creation (ٱلنَّشْأَةَ ٱلْءَاخِرَةَ, annashata alakhirata); surely Allah has power over all things."
    • Verse 38:7 "We never heard of this in the former faith (ٱلْمِلَّةِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ, almillati alakhirati); this is nothing but a forgery:"
  • There are also verses where this word could be translated as both last and hereafter, but "last" would fit better to the word "first" (ٱلْأُولَىٰ, al-oola):
    • 28:70 "...the first and the last / hereafter (ٱلْأُولَىٰ وَٱلْءَاخِرَة, aloola waalakhirati) ..."
    • 53:25 "... the last / hereafter and the first (ٱلْءَاخِرَةُ وَٱلْأُولَىٰ, alakhiratu waloola) ..."

Conclusions[edit]

  • The word Ad-Dunya appears 115 times in the Qur'an but doesn't always mean "this world" or "worldly life"
  • The word Al-Akhira appears 71 times when counting the basic form Al-Akhira and 115 times when the word count includes occurrences with prefixes, like bilakhirati (بِٱلْءَاخِرَةِ) in the verse 12:37.
  • The word Al-Akhira also doesn't always mean "hereafter".
  • "The words Dunya (this world) and Akhira (hereafter) both appear 115 times in the Qur'an, which is a numerical miracle."
    • In this "miracle" the word akhira is counted with many prefixes, while in the 365 days miracle words with these prefixes were not counted.
    • The word dunya doesn't always mean "world" and the word akhira doesn't always mean "hereafter". So the miracle claim is wrong. And phrasing it without the translations is misleading, because it makes people assume that those words always mean "this world" and "hereafter".
    • What is the message behind the number 115? This number seems to be a product of coincidence.
    • What is the message behind these numbers being equal? Is worldly life the same as the hereafter? Are they equally important? Are they equally long? Shouldn't the hereafter be much more important and have a possibly double word count if there is anything miraculous in the Qur'an?
    • A better way of describing the miracle would have been like this: The word ad-dunya (ٱلدُّنْيَا), meaning either "this world" or "nearer" or "lower" and so on, appears 115 times in the Qur'an; the word al-akhira (الآخرة), meaning either "hereafter" or "second" or "latter" and so on, appears 71 times in the Qur'an and if we count also the words with prefixes like bi- (ب) or waw- (و) the word appears 115 times. So, that is the same number of times as the word ad-dunya.

See also[edit]


References[edit]