Islamic Prophecies: Voyage to the moon

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And [I swear by] the moon when it is full, you will mount up stage by stage! What is the matter with them, that they have no faith?" (84:18-20)


After referring to the Moon, the above verses then say that people will mount up stage by stage. The term tarkabunna comes from the verb rakiba, (to mount, walk on a path, follow, embark upon, set about, participate, or rule). In the light of these meanings, it is very likely that the expression "you will mount up stage by stage" refers to a vehicle to be boarded.

Indeed, the astronauts' spacecraft pass through each layer of the atmosphere one by one, and then begin to pass through the Moon's gravitational field. Thus, the Moon is reached by moving through individual layers. In addition, the swearing by the Moon in Surat al-Inshiqaq 18 further strengthens this emphasis, meaning that the verse may well be a sign that humanity will travel to the Moon. (Allah knows best.)



Rebuttal[edit]

Again some tafsirs on these verses:


[وَالْقَمَرِ إِذَا اتَّسَقَ ]

(And by the moon when it Ittasaqa.) Ibn `Abbas said, "When it comes together and becomes complete. Al-Hasan said, "When it comes together and becomes full. Qatadah said, "When it completes its cycle. These statements refer to its light when it is completed and becomes full, as the idea was initiated with "The night and what it gathers. Allah said,

[لَتَرْكَبُنَّ طَبَقاً عَن طَبقٍ ]

(You shall certainly travel from stage to stage.) Al-Bukhari recorded from Mujahid that Ibn `Abbas said,

[لَتَرْكَبُنَّ طَبَقاً عَن طَبقٍ ]

(You shall certainly travel from stage to stage.) "Stage after stage. Your Prophet has said this. Al-Bukhari recorded this statement with this wording. `Ikrimah said,

[طَبَقاً عَن طَبقٍ]

(From stage to stage.) "Stage after stage. Weaned after he was breast feeding, and an old man after he was a young man. Al-Hasan Al-Basri said,

[طَبَقاً عَن طَبقٍ]

(From stage to stage.) "Stage after stage. Ease after difficulty, difficulty after ease, wealth after poverty, poverty after wealth, health after sickness, and sickness after health.
{ وَٱلْقَمَرِ إِذَا ٱتَّسَقَ }

and [by] the moon when it is at the full, and its light is complete, and this happens during the nights of the full moon:

{ لَتَرْكَبُنَّ طَبَقاً عَن طَبقٍ }

you will surely journey (tarkabunna is actually tarkabūnanna, but the nūn of the indicative has been omitted because of two identical letters following one another, and the wāw [is omitted] because of two unvocalised consonants coming together), from stage to stage, state after state, namely, death, then life, then what comes afterwards of the states at the Resurrection.

{ فَمَا لَهُمْ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ }

So what is wrong with them, that is, the disbelievers, that they do not have faith, that is to say, what is there to prevent them from [embracing] faith; or what argument do they have for neglecting it despite the existence of proofs for it,
{ وَٱلْقَمَرِ إِذَا ٱتَّسَقَ }

(And by the moon when she is at the full) for three nights: the nights of the thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth of the lunar month

{ لَتَرْكَبُنَّ طَبَقاً عَن طَبقٍ }

(That ye shall journey) the whole creation shall be transformed (on from plane to plane) from one state to another; from the time He created them until the time they die, and from the time they die until they enter either Paradise or hell: in all these times Allah transforms them from one state to another; it is also said that this means: you shall journey, O Muhammad, from one heaven to another on the day of the ascent; and it is also said that this means: this denier will go from one state to another, from the time he dies until he enters the Fire.

{ فَمَا لَهُمْ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ }

(What aileth them) the disbelievers of Mecca; and it is said this refers to the three sons of 'Abd Yalayl al-Thaqafi: Mas'ud, Habib and Rabi'ah, the last two had later on accepted Islam (then, that they believe not) in Muhammad (pbuh) and the Qur'an.
وَالْقَمَرِ إِذَا اتَّسَقَ ﴿84:18﴾

84:18) and by the moon, when it reaches its fullness:

لَتَرْكَبُنَّ طَبَقًا عَنْ طَبَقٍ ﴿84:19﴾

84:19) you shall proceed onwards from stage to stage. That is, "You will not remain in one and the same state, but will have to pass through countless stages gradually, from youth to old age, from old age to death, from death to barzakh (the intermediary state between death and Resurrection), from barzakh to Resurrections from Resurrection to the Plain of Assembly, then to the Reckoning, and then to the meting out of rewards and punishments. An oath has been sworn by three things to confine this: (1) by the twilight, (2) by the darkness of night and the gathering together in it of aII those human beings and animals who remain scattered in the day time, and (3) by the moon's passing through different phases to become full. These are some of those things which testify that rest and stillness is unknown in the universe in which man lives. There is a continuous and gradual change taking place everywhere. Therefore, the disbelievers are wrong in thinking that life comes to an end after man has breathed his last. فَمَا لَهُمْ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿84:20﴾

84:20) So, what is the matter with them that they do not believe,


Reading the whole Surah in context it is obvious that it is dealing with "Judgment Day" and the destination of people for eternity. Those who listened and became Muslims will spend eternity in Jannat, and those who heard the Quran and did not heed, will spend eternity in Hell being tortured by the all-merciful Allah. The 'stage by stage' part of the ayat has been explained by the scholars, and is talking about the stages of one's life, ending with death (and judgment for our deeds on Earth).


Conclusion[edit]

Surah 84 is about resurrection, judgment and eternity after that. A chastisement for those who did not believe in Islam when they heard about it. The "stages" are talking about stages of life, and the Moon's stages is used as an illustration to this point. This has nothing to do with traveling to the moon, and its not fulfilled prophecy, because this "judgment day" has not occurred.


External Links[edit]

Muslim websites:


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