can you only blame Climate-change?

Series 3- The ‘Aad on lost civilisations …

Bride of the desert, City of Iram of Pillars
Bride of the desert- City of Iram, of Pillars

Time Per Quran: The first major civilisation to receive commissioning from God that flourished after Nuh (Noah’s) flood. Muslims don’t agree with the Biblical interpretation of dates by fellow Christians to map Noah’s historical time.

Location: Palmyra (Alternate name- Tadmur), Syria. Present-day Tadmur, Homs Governorate, Syria.

Popularly known: The Bride of the desert. (read more on-

Quranic Identification: The city of Iram, featuring pillars as their hallmark.

Crimes per Quran: Worship of idols/demi gods; Given to pride and materialism; Hard in punishing foreign tribes.

Catastrophic end: Super-Charged storm and raging winds that lasted for seven nights and eight days.

Legacy: All people lay dead. Ruins of their construction and marvels remained for others to take heed.

Rescued: Prophet Hud and his companions.


Historic background

Quran 29:38. And the ‘Aad and the Thamud [people]: clearly will appear to you from [the traces] of their buildings [their fate]: The Evil One (Satan) made their deeds alluring to them, and kept them back from the Path, although they were prudent.

The ‘Aad civilisation came to the fore of determinism before God; after their predecessors, had tried to falsify many of the messengers over the time of their development and establishment. Finally, God commissioned to them Hud one of their own from a near in their status line of leadership.

Quran 26:123-130

  1. The ‘Aad [people] rejected the messengers.
  2. Behold, their brother Hud said to them: “Will ye not fear [Allah]?
  3. “I am to you a messenger worthy of all trust.
  4. So fear Allah and obey me.
  5. No reward do I ask of you for it: my reward is only from the Lord of the Worlds.”
Aad in Quran, Palmyra and lost civilisations, Quran on lost cities
View of city Iram, known for Pillars

Prophet Hud continues to admonish them …

  1. Do you build a landmark on every high place to amuse yourselves?
  2. And do you get for yourselves fine buildings in the hope of living therein [for ever]?
  3. And when you exert your strong hand, do you do it like men of absolute power?

For their continued doubting they are given some wise words …

Quran 7:69 Do you wonder that there has come to you a reminder from your Lord through a man among yourselves to warn you? And remember that He made you inheritors after the people of Noah and increased you in stature extensively. So, remember the favors that you might succeed.

Dialogue by the chiefs of ‘Aad-
ruins of Palmyras Bel temple, Baalshamin and other gods
Exterior ruins the Temple of Baalshamin

Quran 46:21-26

  1. Remind [them of Hud] a brother amongst ‘Aad: Behold, he warned his people in the sandy plains. But ever since there has been warners before him and after him [proclaiming]: “Worship ye none other than God- Truly I fear for you the Penalty of a Mighty Day.”

Quran 11:52 “And O my people! Ask forgiveness of your Lord, and turn to Him [in repentance]: He will send you the skies pouring abundant rain, and add strength to your strength- So, turn not back in sin!”

 Center: Baal Shamin, god of storms and fertilising rains.
Center (identified as): Baal Shamin, god of storms and fertilising rains, ancient Palmyra.

Continuing from chapter 46

  1. They said: “Have you come to turn us aside from our gods? Then bring upon us the [calamity] with which you do threaten us, if you art telling the truth?”
  2. He said: “The Knowledge [of when it will come] is only with God: I proclaim to you the mission on which I have been sent: But I see that you are a people in ignorance!”…
  3. Then, when they saw [the Penalty in the shape of] a cloud traversing the sky, coming to meet their vales, they said, “This cloud will give us rain!” “Nay, it is the [Calamity] you were asking to be hastened! – A wind wherein is a Grievous Penalty!
  4. “Everything will it destroy by the command of its Lord!” Then by the morning to follow- nothing was to be seen but [the ruins of] their houses! thus do We recompense those given to sin!
  5. And We had firmly established them in a [prosperity and] power which We have not given to you [ye Quraysh! Prophet Muhammad’s tribe 14 centuries ago] and We had endowed them with [ability to] perceive data (on weather) and ingenuity: but of no profit to them were their abilities to perceive data and ingenuity, when they went on rejecting the Signs of God; and they were [completely] encircled by that which they used to mock at!

For the exegesis and fuller explanation of verse 46:26 read here

Fact findings
Palmyra Theater
Amusement-Palmyra Theater

Quran 89:6-8

  1. Don’t you reflect how your Lord dealt with the ‘Aad [civilisation].
  2. Of the [city of] Iram, with lofty pillars.
  3. The like of which were not produced in [all] the land?

Quran 41:15-16

  1. Now that ‘Aad behaved arrogantly through the land, against [all] truth and reason, and said: “Who is superior to us in strength?” Did they not consider that God, who created them, was superior to them in strength? But they continued to reject Our Signs!
  2. So We sent against them a furious Wind through days of misfortune, to make them taste the punishment of disgrace in this life; but the Penalty of a Hereafter is more humiliating still: and they will not be helped.

Quran 54:19-20

  1. For We sent against them a furious wind, on a Day of continuous misfortune.
  2. Plucking out men as if they were trunks of palm trees uprooted.

Quran 51:42. It left nothing of what it came upon, but reduced it to disintegrated ruins.

Quran 69:6-7

  1. And the ‘Aad they were destroyed by a furious Wind, exceedingly violent.
  2. He made it rage against them seven nights and eight days in succession: So, that one could see the [whole] people lying prostrate in its [path], as they had been trunks of palm trees hollow, tumbled down!

The fact is this historical account of the ‘Aad civilisation per archaeological findings dates to the Neolithic period or the new stone age. Anywhere between 10,000 BC up until 4,500 BC. Iram, the city of pillars or the “Bride of the desert” was discovered and documented in 2000 BC.

Quranic accounts date 14 centuries back in time around c. 610.  It was impossible that any man could make such revelations of the hidden happenings of the past but for God, via new revelation to Muhammad blessings on him through Arc Angel Gabriel: Allah the Lord of mankind informed how He did deal with humanity in the past. And He now informs us to derive lessons out of this as He says-

Quran 47:10 Do they not travel through the land and have reflected how was the end of those before them? Allah destroyed over them, and for the disbelievers is something comparable.

For ‘Aad the weather had turned severely violent. If we were to experience that today in any of the regions on Earth, we will be sure to attribute its severity to Global Warming and greenhouse effect. But nothing of it was the subject of their discussions. They saw it trailing in the sky as the clouds that will profit them but alas! God best describes the stealth despite their abilities to weather forecast. Even in present times, with the state of the art, modern technology our frustrations do not subside due to our inconsistent weather predictions as we are surprised often.

  1. The ‘Aad civilisation emerged hundreds of years’ post Noah’s flood.
  2. The ‘Aad civilisation replenished with many generations of their posterity in prosperity had flourished greatly with successes. Their ability to intelligence, data perceptions, planning and foresight had abled them to power, building and luxurious materialism.
  3. Per Quran with no reservations Palmyra compares to ‘Aad by its archaeological findings.
  4. Prophet Muhammad, wasn’t a historian, neither his tribe nor him had any knowledge of the sciences on weather or for that matter archaeology.
  5. Post admonishment by a line of successive advisers it culminated with Prophet Hud that God for their persuasive crimes of worshipping idols; for their pride and materialism; for their, being oppressively hard in punishing foreign tribes and for the rejection of His Prophets destroyed them.
  6. The means of destruction was via a Super-Charged storm with continuously raging winds blasting gravel particles that lasted for well over a week.
  7. The Prophet Hud and his fellow companions were saved.
  8. Their ruins were left for the beholders to seek Wisdom.

End of Series 3.

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Click here to read on Series 1 Introduction: can you only blame Climate-change.

Click here to read on Series 2 God- Just isn’t a destroyer, but undoubtedly is a stern Punisher: can you only blame Climate-change


Pictures from and others.

Main image- By James Gordon from Los Angeles, California, USA – Palmyra, Syria, CC BY 2.0,