Download PDF: [S] Zul Qarnain and the Yajooj Majooj

The name of Zul Qarnain is “Sikander”. He also a cousin of Hadrat Khidr Alayhis Salaam from his maternal side.


Hadrat Khidr Alayhis Salaam was also his advisor and one of the generals in his army. Zul Qarnain is also an offspring from Hadrat Saam bin Nuh Alayhis Salaam and the only son of his mother. He accepted Islam at the hands of Nabi Ebrahim Alayhis Salaam and spent many days in his company. Nabi Ebrahim Alayhis Salaam is also said to have given him many advices. It is said that Zul Qarnain is not a Prophet but someone who was very pious and noble and was also blessed with the station of Sainthood. (Tafseer Saawi, 3/21)


The Holy Prophet Sallal Laahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam had also mentioned that the reason he was called “Zul Qarnain” or “the two horns” is because he had travelled to the two corners of the globe. Some say that the reason he is called this is because during his period, two centuries had passed by. Some say that he had two paths on his hair, hence the name “Zul Qarnain.” Another report is that he had two horns on his helmet, hence the title. Some say that he was called this because his family from both sides were considered highly respected and pious. Allah azza wajal and His Prophet Sallal Laahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam know better. (Tafseer Madaarik, 3/23)


Allah azza wajal had also blessed him with the rule of the entire world in his time. It is said that in history, there were four people who ruled the world in their time. Two of them were believers and two of them were disbelievers. The believers were Nabi Sulayman Alayhis Salaam and Zul Qarnain and the two disbelievers were Bakht Nasr and Nimrud. In Islam, the fifth ruler of the entire universe will be Imam Mehdi Radi Allah ‘Anhu. (Tafseer Saawi, 3/23)


The Three Journeys of Zul Qarnain


These three journeys undertaken by Zul Qarnain are mentioned in Surah Kahaf. We will describe these three journeys which are very strange indeed.


  1. Firstly, he had read in some manuscript that one of the offsprings of Hadrat Saam bin Nuh Alayhis Salaam will drink from the fountain of Eternal Life, hence he undertook a journey towards the west. Hadrat Khidr Alayhis Salaam also accompanied on this journey. Hadrat Khidr Alayhis Salaam reached this spring and drank from it, but it was not in the Taqdeer of Zul Qarnain to do so. Zul Qarnain continued on this journey towards the west until the sun began to set on the horizon and it looked like it was sinking into the sea as a person sees when he is on the ocean. At this place he met a nation who only wore skins of animals as their clothing. There had no other clothing. Besides the fish which were found dead in the sea, they survived on no other food. The were called “Naasik. Zul Qarnain also saw that they had a large army and were very powerful and strong. However, after surrounding them, he had them placed under his control. Consequently, some accepted the faith and others were killed by his forces.


  1. Zul Qarnain then travelled towards the east in the direction of the sunrise. He then met a nation who had no houses or buildings. They were people who immediately hid in their caves when the sun rose. And when the sun had fully risen, they used to go out looking for food. This nation was called “Mun-salik.” Zul Qarnain also attacked these people and those who brought faith were treated fairly and those who remained in their Kufr belief were killed.


  1. Zul Qarnain then travelled to the north until he reached the place in between two peaks. It is said that these people had a very strange language and one was only able to speak with them through sign language. These people also complained to him about the Yajooj Majooj and asked for his help against these people.


Yajooj Majooj and the Door Constructed by Zul Qarnain


This nation were the offspring of Yafith bin Nuh Alayhis Salaam and were extremely mischievous in their ways and behaviour. They also had large numbers in their communities. They always fought against each other and against others and lived a life worse than animals. During the season of spring, they appeared from their caves and consumed all the crops and all the greenery which was available. They also consumed anything which came in their path such as snakes, scorpion and every other animal.


The people who requested Zul Qarnain’s help also offered him financial reward if he helped them against this vicious tribe. However, Zul Qarnain informed them that he had no need for their wealth and that Allah azza wajal had blessed him with a special gift. However, Zul Qarnain requested them to help him physically by building a large wall. Consequently, the foundation of a large and massive wall was then dug. The bricks were also set together using a material like liquid brass and this wall was also solidified further using different methods of material and support. In this manner the wall reached a great height and was more or less the same height as the mountain nearby. No space was left in between the two mountains. Finally, liquid brass was also filled into the wall making it even more stronger. (Tafseer Saawi, 3/22; Tafseer Madaarik; Khazaa’inul Irfaan)


These three journeys are clearly mentioned in Surah Kahaf.


The Final Destruction of the Yajooj Majooj


In the Hadith Shareef, it is mentioned that the Yajooj Majooj try to destroy this wall every day. They spend the entire day in trying to break it little at a time. In the evening, when they feel they have completed this, someone among them informs them that they should leave the balance for tomorrow. However, the next day, Allah azza wajal again commands that the wall become stronger than the previous day and this continues every day.


It is said that the actual moment when this wall is finally broken down is when one person among them says, “Come, In Sha Allah, tomorrow, we will finally break down this wall.” It is through the Barakah of these words that the next day this wall will finally come down. When this happens, these people will come out from behind this wall and cause extreme havoc and murder on earth. They will finish the water in the rivers and in the springs and consume all the vegetation and animals. They will spread all over the earth. However, finally, through the Du’a of Nabi ‘Isa Alayhis Salaam, a small worm will appear on the back of their necks and, through this, all of them will be destroyed.


In Surah Al Ambiyah (21), verse 96, the Qur’an declares:


حَتّٰۤی اِذَا فُتِحَتْ یَاۡجُوۡجُ وَمَاۡجُوۡجُ وَ ہُمۡ مِّنۡ کُلِّ حَدَبٍ یَّنۡسِلُوۡنَ ﴿۹۶﴾


“Until when Yajuj and Majuj would be let loose and they will be coming down

from every height.”