Saturday, 12 March 2011


Ever since man was created, the planet earth has witnessed many natural disasters which we have witnessed and which we come to know through records maintained by mankind.
Let us today analyse:

 What is an earthquake?
 What does Quran and Hadeeth say about it?
 What Scientists and Researchers have to say about it?
 How can we prevent it?
 And most importantly is it a Natural Disaster or Allah’s Wrath?


An earthquake (also known as a quake, tremor or temblor) is the result of a sudden release of energy in the earth's crust (lithosphere) that creates seismic movements.
During this movement of lithospheric plates continent-size slabs of the earth's lithosphere are shifted and intense forces overcome the friction between them. However, if the plates are "locked together", forces build-up and eventually must give way, with the plates lurching into new position and creating an earthquake.
As  per oxford dictionary, it means violent movement of part of the earth’s crust.


Quran emphasizes the fact that nothing can happen in this whole of universe, but with the will and wisdom of The Creator, The Most High, The Irresistible – Allah. And to Him we shall all return.
Allah narrates the story of the people of the past in the Glorious Quran in Surah Nahl where the people were told to worship Allah and to believe in what is revealed to them by the Almighty. They made a mockery by saying that the revelations are just Stories of the ancients.

Your god is one God. But those who do not believe in the Hereafter – their hearts are disapproving, and they are arrogant.
Assuredly, Allah knows what they conceal and what they declare. Indeed, He does not like the arrogant.

And when it is said to them, "What has your Lord sent down?" They say, "Legends of the former peoples,"

That they may bear their own burdens in full on the Day of Resurrection and some of the burdens of those whom they misguide without knowledge. Unquestionably, evil is that which they bear.
Those before them had already plotted, but Allah came at their building from the foundations, so the roof fell upon them from above them, and the punishment came to them from where they did not perceive.
(Surah Nahl): 22-26

Similarly, Allah sent the furious violent wind upon the people of `Aad, so that they were seen lying overthrown and destroyed, as if they were hollow trunks of palm-trees.
Allah sent the awful cry upon the people of Thamud until it cut their hearts inside their bodies, and they all fell dead without exception.
Allah lifted the villages of the people of Loot till the angels heard barking of their dogs, then turned them upside down, and then rained upon them a rain of stones.
These are all instances from the Holy Quran where Allah has punished the wrongdoers in different ways for their evil deeds. And the punishment of the hereafter will be much more intense than these is what Allah says in the following verse.
 "And the torment of the hereafter is far more severe and more lasting." (Surah Taha):127
The following verses from the Quran proves that all natural calamities occurring is the result of the evil and wrongdoings happening upon the earth.
"Whatever misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned." 
(Surah Ash- Shura ):30
 "Evil and mischief have appeared on land and sea because of what the hands of men have earned, that Allah may make them taste a part of that which they have done, in order that they may return (by repenting to Allah)."
(Surah Rum): 41
See they not that they are tried every year once or twice? Yet they turn not in repentance, and they take no heed. 
(Surah Taubah): 126
Present scenario’s earthquake and the related calamities (Tsunami, Volcanoes and Flood etc) is a heavy warning by Allah(swt) to Mankind.
"And We sent not the signs except to warn, and to make them afraid (of destruction)." 
(Surah Isra): 59

Mankind is thinking that there will no questioning of its deeds, and the death in this life is an end. But no, certainly it is not. The following verses are sufficient proof that this world is not an end, but a new beginning, the full compensation of your deeds, the hereafter, which is yet to come and the knowledge of which is with Allah alone.
Indeed, to Us is their return.
Then indeed, upon Us is their account.
(Surah Ghashiyah) : 25-26

Every soul, for what it has earned, will be retained.
(Surah Mudaththir) : 38

Quran also mentions the earthquake of the Hour

"O mankind! Fear your Lord and be dutiful to Him! Verily, the earthquake of the Hour (of Judgment) is a terrible thing. 
The Day you see it, every nursing mother will forget her nursling, and every pregnant one will drop her load, and you shall see mankind as in a drunken state, yet they will not be drunken, but severe will be the Torment of Allah."
(Surah Hajj): 1-2
In the same context, the Glorious Qur'an also reads:
"When the earth is shaken with its (final) earthquake. 
And when the earth throws out its burdens. 
And man will say: "What is the matter with it?" 
That Day it will declare its information (about all that happened over it of good or evil).
 Because your Lord will inspire it.
That Day mankind will proceed in scattered groups that they may be shown their deeds.
So whosoever does good equal to the weight of an atom (or a small ant) shall see it. 
And whosoever does evil equal to the weight of an atom (or a small ant) shall see it."
(Surah Zalzalah):1-8
Allah (swt) warns His servants with the earthquake to learn a lesson and be admonished, and to be ready and prepare themselves for the Day of sorting out, the day of the great earthquake, that will shake all of the earth. Which will be the greatest of all the quakes that have taken place upon the face of the earth.

From the authentic hadeeth of bukhari we come to know that Earthquakes will become very frequent before The Hour will come.
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, "The Hour (Last Day) will not be established until (religious) knowledge will be taken away (by the death of religious learned men), earthquakes will be very frequent, time will pass quickly, afflictions will appear, murders will increase and money will overflow amongst you." 
Sahih Bukhari :(Book #17, Hadith #146).

What Scientists and Researchers have to say about it?

The Scientists and Researchers say that the primary cause of earthquakes is the movement of masses of earth along fault lines. Fault lines can occur anywhere. Nevertheless, they are normally created from pressure generated by the movement of lithosphere plates on the mantle of the earth. These plates were first theorized by a German meteorologist and astronomer named Alfred Lothar Wegener (1880-1930). At the time he was ridiculed for his ideas, but later they were substantiated by further research. Even so, the theory of plate tectonics only became widely accepted within the last half of the 1900s.
There is constant pressure on lithosphere plates to move. Yet the friction of land masses being pushed together only allows movement to occur in fits and starts. So when movement finally comes as a result of all this lithosphere pushing, we often feel it, and we call it an earthquake.
Faults that occur close the surface of a plate usually generate the most significant quakes. Earthquakes seldom cause the earth to actually crack open along a fault line. 

The earth as a planet is annually subjected to about one million earthquakes (with an average of about 2738 earthquakes per day). Most of these earthquakes are gentle to moderate ones that cannot be felt by man, but are recorded by seismographs.
A hundred to hundred and fifty of these earthquakes are moderate to destructive in populated areas, (20) twenty of which are of total destructive capacity, and every 5-10 years comes one that reaches or exceeds the peak of mass destruction, although this average has been lately accelerated.
Most earthquakes occur in certain belts or earthquakes-prone zones. These are concentrated where two tectonic plates collide, diverge or slip past each other. However, not a single spot on the Earth's surface can be excluded from the possibility of being subjected to earthquakes. The type of plate contact can determine both the magnitude intensity and depth of the earthquake.

How can we predict and prevent it?

Despite the fact that earth scientists understand the mechanism by which earthquakes can take place, they are losing faith in their ability to predict such disasters.
Earthquakes - like many other destruction - are part and parcel of the Divine plan for punishing the evil - doers trying the pious ones, and teaching the saved individuals the lesson of their lives. Unless taken in this context, human beings will never learn from their own mistakes or even from the mistakes of others. Understanding the mechanisms by which earthquakes take place and measuring both their intensities and magnitudes cannot help in their prediction and prevention. The only way of avoiding this and other disasters is heeding the Creator and living according to His guidance.

Is it a Natural Disaster or  Is it Allah’s Wrath?

The record of earthquakes proves the sudden, non–linear nature of these disasters that took the lives of millions of individuals throughout history, injured several other millions, made billions of people homeless and caused material losses of endless values. These tragedies cannot be the work of the mechanical processes of the earth, but need a designer, and the designer is the Creator Himself. And they must have a purpose, and the purpose is punishment for the transgressors and the aggressors, trial for the pious and honest ones that are caught in the middle and a reminder for the survivors.
If you analyse the verses mentioned from the Glorious Quran above and the explanations from the above contents, we can clearly understand that Earthquake is Allah’s wrath. The wrongdoings prevalent in our world is enormous ranging from Alcohol, Prostitution, Gambling, Idol worship, Fortune Telling, Fire worship and many more, which results in such occurrences.
May Allah save us from these trials and tribulations and keep us among the pious.
May Allah guide us with his Mercy and grant us from his bounties.
May Allah increase in all of us knowledge and make us amongst those who strive in his way.

Jazak Allahu Khairan for reading this article.
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