Time in the Qur’an An Introductory Overview

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Enes Karic



This essay is written with the aim of presenting, in an infor-mative way, the main words of the Qur’ān relating to time or some aspect of time. The essay begins with a study of Qur’anic vocabulary on time done by Muḥammad b. Mūsā Bābāʻammī in his work Mafhūm al-Zamān fī-l-Qurʼān al-Karīm. However, in the essay we have sought to present the semantic richness of the vocabulary of the Qurʼān that relates to time. The essay can serve as a starting point for other philological, theological, and phil-osophical studies of the terminology of Islam relating to time. God created time (al-zamān).

          No time existed before that.
          And God created place (al-makān).
          No place existed before that.
          The Absolute (al-Ḥaqq), the Magnificent, He was there although there was no place or time.
          He is Supreme, no place reaches Him,
          Nor is He owned by time!

                                                                                                           (al-Qushayrī, Laṭāʼif al-Ishārāt, 3:145)

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