the animals and plants its face changes very rapidly, like a minute-hand it shows that this aspect of the world also is transient. And just as the earth is like this in regard to its face, so through the revolutions and upheavals within it, and the mountains emerging as a result and disappearing, this aspect of the world is slowly passing also, like an hour-hand. And through change like the movements of the celestial bodies, the appearance of comets, the occurrence of solar and lunar eclipses, and falling stars, the space of the heavens too, which is like the ceiling of the house of the world, shows that the heavens also are not stable and constant, but are progressing towards old age and destruction. Their change is slow and tardy like the hand counting the days in a weekly clock, but in every respect it demonstrates that it is transient and passing and heading for destruction.
Thus, the world, in regard to the world, has been constructed on these seven pillars. These pillars perpetually shake it. But when the world which is thus in motion and being shaken looks to its Maker, the motion and change is the working of the pen of power writing the missives of the Eternally Besought One. And those changing states are the mirrors of the Divine Names, which, being constantly renewed, display with ever-differing depictions the manifestation of the Names’ qualities.
And so, in respect of the world, the world is both transient and hastens towards death, and is undergoing revolution. Although in reality it is departing like flowing water, to the heedless eye it appears to be frozen; due to the idea of nature, it has become dense and turbid, and become a veil concealing the hereafter. Thus, through philosophical investigation and natural science, and the seductive amusements of dissolute civilization and its intoxicated passions, sick philosophy has both increased the world’s frozen state and inaction, and made denser heedlessness, and increased its opaqueness and turbidity, and caused the Maker and the hereafter to be forgotten. Whereas, with its verses,
By the Mount [of Revelation]. * By a Book inscribed.1 * When the Event Inevitable comes to pass.2 * The [Day of] Noise and Clamour, * What is [the Day of] Noise and Clamour?,3
the Qur’an cards the world in regard to the world like cotton, and casts it away. Through its expositions like,
Do they see nothing in the government of the heavens and the earth?4 * Do they not look at the sky above them? - How We have made it.5 *