- When the earth is shaken with its [final] earthquake
- And the earth discharges its burdens
- And man says, “What is [wrong] with it?” –
- That Day, it will report its news
- Because your Lord has commanded it.
- That Day, the people will depart separated [into categories] to be shown [the result of] their deeds.
- So whoever does an atom’s weight of good will see it,
- And whoever does an atom’s weight of evil will see it.
The name of the Surah is derived from the word “zilzal” in the first verse. Zalzalah means to shake violently over and over again. Thus, zulzilat-il,ardu means that the earth will be shaken violently by convulsion after convulsion, and since shaking of the earth has been mentioned, it automatically gives the meaning that the entire earth will be shaken and not a limited territory of it. Then, in order to express the great intensity of the earthquake the word zilzalaha has been added, which literally means “its being shaken”. It mean: “It will be so shaken as a huge sphere like it ought to be shaken, or shaken to its utmost intensity.”
The Surat told us about the second life after death and presentation in it before man of the full record of the deeds done by him in the world. In the first three sentences it has been told briefly how the second life after death will take place and how confounding it will be for man. In the next two sentences it has been said that this very earth on which man has lived and performed all kinds of deeds thoughtlessly, and about which he never could fancy that this lifeless thing would at some time in the future bear witness to his deeds, will speak out on that Day by Allah’s command and will state in respect of each individual person what act he had committed at a particular time and place. Then, it has been said that men on that Day, rising from their graves, will come out in their varied groups from all corners of the earth, to be shown their deeds and works, and their presentation of the deeds will be so complete and detailed that not an atom’s weight of any good or evil act will be left unnoticed or hidden from His eyes.