Day of Separation
Yawm al-Faṣl (Arabic: یَوْم الفَصْل, literally: Day of Separation) is a term in the Qur'an referring to the Day of Resurrection. Exegetes of the Qur'an maintain that the Day of Resurrection is referred to as the Day of Separation because it is on this day that the truth and falsehood will be separated.
"Fasl" literally means to cut off or separate. According to al-Mufradat, "fasl" is to separate two things from each other in a way that a distance is created there between, such as the verse 21 of Qur'an 37.
In the Qur'an
The term, "Yawm al-Fasl", is used in the Qur'an to refer to the Day of Resurrection mainly for the purpose of reprehending and threatening polytheists or deniers. According to the verse 21 of Sura al-Saffat,
|“||‘This is Yawm al-Faṣl that you used to deny!’ (Qur'an 37:21)||”|
|“||the day when a friend will not avail a friend in any way, nor will they be helped, * except for him on whom Allah has mercy. Indeed He is the All-mighty, the All-merciful. (Qur'an 44:41-42)||”|
In Qur'an 77, the term, "Yawm al-Fasl", has been used three times to refer to the Day of Resurrection. In verses 13 and 14, the greatness of the Day is characterized as follows:
|“||—for what day has [all] that been set [to occur]? * For Yawm al-Faṣl! * And what will show you what is Yawm al-Faṣl!? (Qur'an 77:12-14)||”|
And in the verse 38 of Sura al-Mursalat, deniers have been threatened as follows:
|“||Woe to the deniers on that day! * ‘This is Yawm al-Faṣl. We have brought you together with the former generations.(Qur'an 77:38)||”|
And in the verse 17 of Qur'an 78, the Day of Separation is characterized as an appointed time in which all peoples are assembled.
'Allama Tabataba'i holds that "Yawm al-Fasl" refers to the Day of Separation because, according to the verse 17 of Qur'an 22, it separates the creatures. And the Day of Resurrection is called "Yawm al-Fasl" because it is on this day that the truth is separated from the falsehood and pious people are separated from sinners. He takes the verse 59 of Sura Yasin, "Stand apart today, you criminals", to be evidence for his interpretation.
According to Tafsir-i nimuna, "Yawm al-Fasl" means the Day of Judgment in which God will adjudicate His servants. In this world, truths and falsehoods are intertwined, but on the Day of Resurrection, they will be separated and the secrets will be revealed.
Morteza Motahhari interprets "Yawm al-Fasl" as follows:
"Human beings form communities in this world on the basis of their appearances, but in the Resurrection, the reign is grounded in people's interiors and internal habits. In the afterlife, an angel-like person will not be able to communicate with evil people. Thus, there will be a separation between them. People will be resurrected with their leaders in flocks, with some of them having a leader in the Hell and some others having a leader in the Heaven.
- Qarashī, Qāmūs-i Qurʾān, vol. 5, p. 180.
- Ṭabāṭabāyī, Tarjuma-yi al-Mīzān, vol. 20, p. 237.
- Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 17, p. 130.
- Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 19, p. 32.
- Motahhari, Majmūʿa-yi āthār, vol. 28, p. 283.
- Makārim Shīrāzī, Nāṣir. Tafsīr-i nimūna. Tehran: Dār al-Kutub al-Islāmīyya, 1354 Sh.
- Motahhari, Morteza. Majmūʿa-yi āthār. Tehran: Ṣadrā, [n.d].
- Qarashī, ʿAlī Akbar. Qāmūs-i Qurʾān. Tehran: Dār al-Kutub al-Islāmīyya, 1371 Sh.
- Ṭabāṭabāyī, Muḥammad Ḥusayn. Al-Mīzān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān. Beirut: Muʾassisat al-Aʿlamī li-l-Maṭbūʿāt, 1390 AH.
- Ṭabāṭabāyī, Muḥammad Ḥusayn. Tarjuma-yi al-Mīzān. Translated to Farsi by Mūsawī Hamidānī. Qom: Daftar-i Nashr-i Islamī, 1417 AH.