A verse of the Qur'an states: ''Indeed We offered the Trust (amana) to the heavens, the earth, and the mountains, but they refused to bear it because they were afraid of it. Yet the human being took it up; indeed he is oppressive and ignorant'' (33:72).
The eschatological principle to be paired with this aspect of creation is the concept of judgement, either of individuals or of nations in history. Both individual humans and nations have their determined terms (10:49; *5:4-5). At the end of time a trumpet will sound twice (39:68), calling for the resurrection. The first blast will be like a wind that ends all life as we know it. The second blast signals the resurrection of the dead (qiyama), also known as the ''rising up'' (ba'th). Once resurrected, all men and women will be assembled (hashr) on an immense and featureless plain. Many elements of the Hajj pilgrimage are held to be reminiscent of this final assembly, for example the huge crowds and confusion, as well as the uniform white garments (ihram) worn by males that resemble burial shrouds.
Further prophetic traditions indicate that after judgement punishment may be embodied in forms commensurable with a person's sins, so that avarice, for instance, will be embodied by a snake coiled around the miser's neck. At the same time all human actions are said to have been recorded (36:12), so that the judgement day is also known as the day of reckoning (yawm al-hisab). At this time actions will testify for or against their agents, who will receive books in the right or left hand, witness their scrolls being unrolled, or hear their various limbs testify to the deeds they had committed (41:19-24; 69:19-26). The final judgement is depicted by a range of images. Each person's deeds will be weighed in scales (mazan), the judged must walk over a narrow bridge (sirat) stretched over hellfire, into which the guilty will plunge, while a heavenly pool (hawd) of the Prophet awaits the believers, who will be purified and have their thirst quenched.8
After the judgement, souls will be divided and assigned either to heaven, symbolised by a verdant garden (janna) or to hell (jahan-nam), also known simply as ''the Fire'' (al-nar). Qur'anic symbolism suggests further gradations of recompense such as that of the ''People of the Heights'' who are in neither heaven nor hell (7:46), and other specific terms for Paradise and hell that are in some cases interpreted by commentators as indicating ranks and levels in the afterlife.9
A further aspect of judgement is that of nations. This occurs within the course of history in terms of divine blessing or punishment being meted out to human communities that either fulfil or reject the teachings of God's messengers.
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