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At its core, Al-Buruj is a punishment story that employs intense appeals to emotion. Distinct elements such as oath formulations, external referencing, juxtapositional statements, and ring compositions altogether work to enable such appeals. Ultimately, these elements, which define both Al-Buruj and Meccan suras, collectively work to strengthen faith in and compel further adoption of the Qur’anic message.
Like most Meccan suras, Al-Buruj begins with an oath formula. “By the sky with its towering constellations, by the promised Day, by the Witness and that which is witnessed” (85:1-3). Typical of these oaths, it begins by invoking the grandeur of nature. The oath incorporates a transcendental element as well, swearing by the “promised Day,” or the day in which Godjudges the actions of human. These types of affirmations play a strategic role in establishing a foundation that attests to the credibility of revelation, which therefore explains their abundance in Meccan suras. Ernst explains that these “emphatic formulas of assertion...call to witness various extraordinary entities, both natural and supernatural, to underline the truth of the revelation” (Ernst 51). Therefore, oath …show more content…
The Qur’an includes vivid depictions of the end-times and apocalyptic landscapes in its punishment stories, and Al-Buruj is no exception. On the surface, Al-Buruj is about how early Muslims were tortured by non-believers and burned in a trench (85:3-5). Though, one should recognize that the focus of this surais not on the physical brutalization of believers per se, but rather God’s general response to those that harm believers and dismiss revelation. For these individuals, “the torment of Hell and burning” awaits them in the afterlife (85:10). Conversely, “Gardens graced with flowing streams” are promised to those that remain steadfast in their faith

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