Is an Overall Destruction of the World Possible?
It has been proved that there is a necessity for the Resurrection, and the One Who will raise the dead is able to do this. The whole world is exposed to the Resurrection and there are four matters relating to this subject as follows:
- It is possible for this world to perish.
- The world will actually perish.
- The possibility exists for the destroyed world to be rebuilt again in the form of the Hereafter.
- The destroyed world will actually be resurrected and re-built.
The death of the whole of creation is possible.
The death of the whole of creation is possible. If something is subject to the law of development, then it will certainly evolve to a final end. If something develops to this final end, then that means it will have a limited lifetime, and if something has a limited lifetime, then a natural end is certain to be fixed for it. Lastly, if something is destined for a fixed end, then it will inevitably die, and since man is a microcosm and nothing prevents him from dying, so too the whole universe, being regarded as a macro-human being, will not be saved from perishing. Accordingly, it will perish and be brought to life again in the morning of the Last Day. Just as a living tree, which is a miniature of the universe, is not able to save itself from annihilation, so ‘the branches of creatures’ which have grown from ‘the tree of creation’ will also pass away. If the universe is not destroyed by an external destructive event which could occur by the leave of the Eternal Will, then a day, as also predicted by science, will certainly come when this macro-human being will go into the throes of death. It will give a sharp cry, and what is described in these Qur’anic verses will take place :
When the sun shall be darkened; when the stars shall be thrown down; when the mountains shall be set moving. (81:1-3)
When heaven is split open; when the stars are scattered; when the seas swarm over. (82:1-3)
A significant subtle point
Water freezes, and loses its essential liquid form; ice changes into water and loses its essential state as a solid; the essence of something becomes stronger at the expense of its material form; a coarse language is not suitable for the expression of meaning; the spirit weakens as the flesh becomes more substantial, and the flesh weakens as the spirit becomes more illuminated. Thus the solid world is being gradually refined by the mechanism of life to the advantage of the afterlife. The Creative Power breathes life into dense, solid and inanimate substances as the result of astonishing activities and refines that solid world to the advantage of the coming world through the light of life.
A truth never perishes, no matter how weak it is, instead, it takes form in the corporeal world. As the truth flourishes and expands, the form containing it grows weaker and is refined. The spiritual truth which actually constitutes the essence of something is inversely proportional to the strength of its form, in other words, as the form grows denser, the truth becomes weaker, and as the form grows weaker, the truth obtains more strength. This law is common to all creatures that are destined to develop and evolve. We can conclude from this argument that the corporeal world, which is a form containing the great truth of the universe, will break into pieces by the leave of the Majestic Creator and be rebuilt more beautifully. One day, the meaning expressed by the Qur’anic verse, Upon the day the earth shall be changed to other than the earth will be realized. Finally, the death of the world is undoubtedly possible.
The world will certainly die.
The world will certainly die. This is an undeniable reality, confirmed by all the God-revealed religions, supported by all pure and saintly persons, and indicated by all the changes, transformations, and alterations in the universe. It is indicative of the inevitable death of the world that its inhabitants have been replaced by new ones every day, every year, and in every age. Those who have been welcomed into this guesthouse of the world make their farewells some time later and are followed by newcomers, a fact which testifies to the final death of the world itself.
If you would like to imagine the death of this world as indicated by the relevant Qur’anic verses, look at how minutely and precisely the constituent parts of the universe have been connected to one another. Consider how sublimely and delicately they have been organized into a system, so that if a single heavenly body were to be given the order ‘Leave your axis!’, the whole universe would be thrown into the throes of death. Stars would collide, planets would be scattered and the sound of the exploding spheres would fill space. Mountains would be set in motion and the earth would be flattened. This is what the Eternal Power will actually do to bring about the next life, and, by upsetting the universe, to separate the elements of Paradise from those of Hell.
This article has been adapted from Risale- i Nur Collection.