36.40. It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor doth the night outstrip the day. They float each in an orbit. (Pickthall)
36.40. Für die Sonne paßt es nicht, daß sie den Mond einholt, und die Nacht kommt nicht der Tageszeit zuvor, und jedes schwebt in einer Himmelssphäre. (Ahmad v. Denffer)
36.40. Weder ziemt es der Sonne, den Mond einzuholen, noch wird die Nacht dem Tag zuvorkommen; alle laufen in einer (jeweils eigenen) Umlaufbahn. (Bubenheim)
36.40. Weder darf die Sonne den Mond in seiner Bahn einholen, noch darf die Nacht dem Tag vorauseilen. Jeder Himmelkörper schwebt in seiner Bahn. (Azhar)
36.40. Weder die Sonne darf den Mond einholen, noch die Nacht den Tag ereilen. Und alle schweben in (bestimmter) Bahn. (Zaidan)
36.40. Und weder steht es der Sonne an, den Mond einzuholen, noch kommt die Nacht dem Tag zuvor. Alle (Gestirne) schweben an einem Himmelsgewölbe (falak). (Paret)
36.40. Weder hat die Sonne den Mond einzuholen, noch eilt die Nacht dem Tage voraus; und alle schweben auf einer Umlaufbahn. (Rasul)
Tafsir von Maududi für die Ayaat 37 bis 40
Another Sign for them is the night: We remove the day from above it, and they are covered in darkness. ( 32 ) And the Sun: it is moving to its place of rest. ( 33 ) This is the decree of the All-Mighty, All-Knowing God. And the Moon: We have determined stages for it till it again becomes like an old dry palm-branch. ( 34 ) Neither is it possible for the Sun to overtake the Moon, ( 35 ) nor for the night to outstrip the day. ( 36 ) Each is gliding in its own orbit. ( 37 )
Desc No: 32 The alternation of the night and day also is one of those realities which man dces not regard as worthy of much attention only because it is a phenomenon of daily occurrence and experience; whereas if he considers how the day passes and how the night falls, and what is the wisdom in the passing of the day and in the falling of the night, he will himself realize that this is an obvious sign of the existence of an All-Powerful and All-Wise Allah and of His being One and only One. The day cannot pass and the night cannot fall until the sun hides from the earth. The great regularity which is found in the alternation of the day and night, was not possible unless the sun and the earth were bound in one and the same relentless system. Then the deep relationship which exists between the alternation of the day and night and the other creations on the earth clearly points to the fact that this system has been established deliberately by a Being with perfect wisdom. The existence on the earth, of the men and animals and vegetation, and even of water and air and different minerals, is in fact, the result of placing the earth at a particular distance from the sun, with the arrangement that the different parts of the earth should go on successively coming before the sun and hiding from it at definite intervals. If the distance of the earth from the sun had been a little longer, or a little shorter, or there had been a perpetual night on one side of it and a perpetual day on the other, or the alternation of the day and night had been much faster or much slower, or sometimes the day had appeared suddenly and sometimes the night without any system, no life could be possible on this planet, and even the form and appearance of the inorganic substances would have been much different from what it is now. If the mind's eye is not closed, one can clearly perceive in this system the working of a God, Who willed to bring into being this particular kind of creation on the earth and then established relevances, harmonies and relationships between the earth and the sun precisely in accordance with its needs and requirements. If a person regards the concept of the existence of God and His Unity as far removed from reason, he should think for himself and see how much farther removed should it be from reason to ascribe this wonderful creation to many gods, or to think that All this has happened sutomatically under some deaf and blind law of nature. When a person who can accept without question these latter unreasonable explanations, only on the baal: of conjecture and speculation, says that the existence of a system and wisdom and purpose is not a sufficient proof of the existence of God, it becomes difficult for us to believe whether such a person really feels the need and necessity of a rational proof, sufficient or insufficient in any degree whatever, for accepting any concept of creed in the world.
Desc No: 33 "Place of rest" may either mean the place where the sun will ultimately come to a halt, or the time when it will come to a halt. The true meaning of this verse can be determined only when man has attained the full and exact knowledge of the realities of the universe. But man's knowledge is such that it has boon changing in every age and what he seems to know today might change tomorrow. The people of the ancient times on the basis of their observations of the sun believed that it was moving round the earth. Then after further research and observation the view became that the sun was stationary and all the planets of the solar system were revolving round it. But this theory also did not last long. The later observations revealed that not only the sun but All the stars also are moving in a particular direction, at speeds of 10 to 100 miles per second. About the sun the modern astronomers hold the view that it is moving at a speed of 20 kilometres (about 12 miles) per second along with its whole family of the planets. (See "Star" and "Sun" in Encyclopedia Britannica).
Desc No: 34 That is, the phases of the moon go on changing throughout the month. 1t begins as a crescent, then goes on waxing every. day till it becomes the full moon on the 14th of the month. Then it starts waning every day till at last it returns to its original shape of the crescent. The same has been happening for millions of years with perfect regularity, and no change has ever occurred in the phases of the moon. That is why one can always calculate and find out exactly in what phase the moon will be on a particular day. If the movement of the moon had not been bound in a system, estimation of its phases would not have been possible.
Desc No: 35 This sentence can have two meanings and both are correct: (1) The sun does not have the power that it should draw the moon into itself, or enter its orbit and collide with it; and (2) the sun cannot appear in the times which have been appointed for the rising and appearing of the moon. It is not possible that the sun should suddenly appear on the horizon when the moon is shining at night.
Desc No: 36 Nor does this happen either that the night should approach before the appointed period of the day comes to an end, and should start spreading its darkness suddenly during the time when the day is meant to spread its light.
Desc No: 37 The word falak in Arabic is used for the orbit of the planets, and it gives a different meaning from the word sama' (sky). The sentence, "Each is gliding in its own orbit," points to four realities: (1) That not only the sun and the moon but all the stars and planets and celestial bodies are moving; (2) the falak, or orbit, of each one of them is separate; (3) that the orbits are not moving with the stars in them, but the stars are moving in the orbits; and (4) that the movement of the stars in their orbits is similar to the floating of something in a fluid. These verses are not intended to describe the realities of astronomy, but are meant to make man understand that if he looks around himself, with open eyes, and uses his common sense, he will find countless and limitless proofs of the existence of God and His Unity, and he will not come across a single proof of atheism and shirk. The vastness of the solar system in which our earth is included is such that its parent body, the sun, is 300,000 times bigger than the earth, and its farthest planet Neptune is at least 2,793 million miles distant from the sun. However, if Pluto is taken as the farthest planet, it revolves 4,600 million miles away round it. Notwithstanding this vastness, the solar system occupies a very insignificant part of a huge galaxy. The galaxy which includes our solar system has about 3,000 million suns in it, and its nearest sun is so distant from our earth that its light takes about four years to reach us. Then this galaxy also is not the whole universe. According to the investigations made so far, it has been estimated that it is one of about 2,000,000 spiral nebulae, and the nearest nebula is about a million light years away from the earth. As for the farthest celestial bodies which arc visible through the modern instruments, their light reaches the earth in about 100 million years. Even now it cannot be claimed that man has seen the whole universe. It is a small part of the Kingdom of God which man has yet been able to observe. It cannot be predicted how far and deep man will yet be able to see with greater and more efficient means of observation at his disposal. All the information that has been gathered so far about the universe proves that this whole world is trade up of the same substance of which our tiny earthly world is made, and the same law is working in the universe which is working in the world of our earth; otherwise it was not at All possible. that man should have made observations of the very distant worlds from the earth, measured their distances and estimated their movements. Is it not a clear proof of the fact that this whole universe is the creation of One God and the Kingdom of One Ruler? Then from the order and the wisdom and the excellence of workmanship and the deep relationships which are found in the hundreds of thousands of the galaxies and in the millions and billions of the stars and planets revolving in them no sensible person can imagine that all this has come about automatically. Is it possible that there should be no administrator behind this order and system, no sage behind this wisdom, no designer behind this design and work of art, and no planner behind this planning? "