Question 62: What Is The Meaning of The Words: Everything Will Be Destroyed Except His Face?
Question: Is the human soul annihilated? If you say that it is incorporeal the ayat says that except for Allah everything can be annihilated. How can you explain this?
Answer: We should remember that the word 'destroy' in the ayat is not in the meaning of getting completely annihilated because not only the human soul, the human body is also not destroyed completely. And after breaking up it remains in the earth in other substances. On the day of judgment he would be raised from there.
Thus whether we consider soul incorporeal or not it is not absolutely destroyable and annihilated. And neither is the human body is totally destroyed. Rather the word 'Halaak' in the ayat denotes the disintegration of the organs and the destruction of the face. Thus this destruction is that the connection between the body and soul is severed. And the previous physical parts are disintegrated. Though soul and body remain separate and exist in some other forms.
Many ayats that are revered in connection with the destruction of the past communities prove the above statement. For example the Almighty Allah destroyed the People of Aad and Thamud and did not spare anyone and in the same way He destroyed the People of Nuh.
Obviously in those ayats, Aad, Thamud and People of Nuh were destroyed in the sense that they died and the connection between their bodies and their souls was severed. Therefore they ayat: “Everything will be destroyed except His face” means that all the living and non-living things disintegrate and their style undergoes a change and it is only the Purified Being of Allah which is beyond every type of change and transformation.