|Surah al Burooj – The Forts of the Stars (85)

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[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Intro:[/callout]

This Surahs’ Relation to the Previous cluster of Surahs’ before it:

Up until now – the surahs have had a mention of the sky (samaa’) in the beginning. Most of the time – the mention of the sky was related to its destruction and permanent tearing apart on Judgment Day. The sky was made for this purpose – for the Day when it will be torn. This is what we learn in the previous surah. The theme of inevitability of the Day of Judgment.

This surah is about what the Muslims are going through now, and what has happened in the past nations.


Why are Oaths used?

– When Allah swears by something, it is due to the importance of something.
So Allah magnifies the sky.
– Allah might do an oath when He is angry.
When you’re not being believed, you do an oath.
– To take whatever Allah swears by and makes it a witness for what He is going to say.

What is the sky a witness to?

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 1:[/callout]

وَالسَّمَاءِ ذَاتِ الْبُرُوجِ

was-smaa’i dhaat il burooj.

I swear by the sky that possesses burooj.


dhaat – Possessor of something.

burooj – barj/baraja (verb) / burj (a tower or fort that is very high). Anything stellar and high that you have to look up to see it = burj.

large stars in the sky are Burj.

The ancient peoples had a field of knowledge called the ‘ulum an-nujoom – the knowledge of stars. This is similar to horoscopes today.

They would believe that the sky is divided into 12 areas. Each section of the sky was a burj.

Ibn Katheer:

Burj are the large stars in the sky.

Nujoom (twinkling shining stars) and;

Kawakib (firmly placed stars and planets) were mentioned in previous surahs.

So why Is Burooj mentioned now in this surah?

Burooj – Forts.

We are being told the sky is full of forts. And who is in these forts? Soldiers. Who are the soldiers in the sky? Angels.

Allah says about the Warrior angels helping the Muslims;

بَلَىٰ ۚ إِن تَصْبِرُوا وَتَتَّقُوا وَيَأْتُوكُم مِّن فَوْرِهِمْ هَٰذَا يُمْدِدْكُمْ رَبُّكُم بِخَمْسَةِ آلَافٍ مِّنَ الْمَلَائِكَةِ مُسَوِّمِينَ

Yes, if you remain patient and conscious of Allah and the enemy come upon you [attacking] in rage, your Lord will reinforce you with five thousand angels having marks [of distinction] [aal Imran 3:125]


The angels are within the forts of the sky and universe, and there will come a Day when they will be called for duty. So they will descend from these forts in rows upon rows. (see surah Fajr 89:22).

The importance of this will be explained further on in the surah insha’ Allah.

Some say Burj are forts and castles in the sky in which there are strong armies of angels.

The polytheists would say that the Jinn would spy in the sky and tell them knowledge of the future through hearing the knowledge of the unseen being discussed by the Angels. But the Jinn who did try to listen – they would be shot at by the guards of angels in the skies. shihab ath-thaqib (firing piercing stars) shot at them to burn them.

So the disbelieving Jinn did not know the future, and there were angel guards in Forts and Castles to shoot at those who tried to spy.

The essence of the meaning of Barj = Manifestation.


The most brilliant and stellar skies in the sky are the burooj.

Islaahi: In the previous surah, the sky was being completely being destroyed. But it isn’t destroyed now. So when someone goes deep into nature and looks at the sky filled with stars. Allah has mentioned the destruction of the sky repeatedly in the previous surahs’, so when this person sees the sky today packed with stars – he always remembers that a Day is coming when it will tear fully and permanently, and it will be pleased to do so.

These brilliant stars are like a reminder, so whenever we see the big stars, or when we see them twinkle, we remember the Day when the sky will fully tear.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 2:[/callout]

وَالْيَوْمِ الْمَوْعُودِ

wa-al yawm-il maw’ood

and by the day which is promised.

That Day which He has continuously promised throughout the Qur’an repeatedly.


So Allah has sworn by the sky and its Fort stars (burooj), and the Promised Day (of Ressurection).

wa AL yawmil maw’ood.

and (I swear by)THE Daywhich is promised.

The AL – makes it singular. Because Judgment Day is 1 day.
wa shaahidiN wa mash-huudiN [with tanweenNoon/N letter at the end signifies plural/many.]
It allows ALOT of things to be witnesses and witnessed.


The Crimes;

Throughout Juzz ‘Amma, we see the disbelievers are making fun of the Day of Ressurection.

The crimes against the Messenger of Allah. The crime against Allah’s revelati