There will be physical signs on the Day of Judgement so people can see that the world is not normal anymore. These include landslides, the sun rising from the West and the Smoke.

Landslides

There will be three landslides before Qiyamah like never seen before. One in the East, one in the West and one in Arabia. The Earth will swallow everything above it and as a result, many people will die. However, everybody will be raised according to his intentions. This will take place when evil prevails.

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ came to us all of a sudden as we were (busy in discussion) He said: “What are you discussing?” They (the companions) said: “We are talking about the last hour.” Thereupon he said: “It will not come until you see ten signs before it, He made a mention of the Smoke, the Dajjal, the Beast, the Rising of the Sun from the West, the Descent of Jesus, Son of Mary , the emergence of Ya’juj and Ma’juj, and Landsliding will occur in three places, One in the East, one in the West and one in Arabia at the end of which a fire would burn forth from Yemen, which would drive people to the place of their assembly.”
Muslim, Narrated by Hudhaifa-b-Usaid al-Ghifari

I heard Prophet Muhammad ﷺ saying, “After me there will be a landslide in the East, a landslide in the West and a landslide in the Peninsula of Arabia.” I asked, “Oh Messenger of Allah will the Earth give way, though there are some pious people above it.” Prophet Muhammad ﷺ replied, “When its inhabitants exceed doing bad and evil.”
Tabrani Fil-Awsat, Narrated by Umme Salmah

The Smoke

The smoke is a major sign of Qiyamah. It will rise and cover the whole world. The smoke will affect both the believers and non-belivers alike remaining for a period of 40 days and night. The believers will be affected a little as if suffering from cold while the smoke will enter the brains of the non-belivers and make them unconscious. (Hudaifa-b-al-Yaman/Tabari)

”I heard Prophet Muhammad ﷺ saying, ”The final hour will not come until you see ten signs. ” (one of the ten mentioned was the smoke)
Muslim, Narrated by Wasila-Bb-l-Asqa

“‘Then watch for the Day when the sky will bring a visible smoke.
Covering the people; this is a painful torment.
[They will say], “Our Lord, remove from us the torment; indeed, we are believers.”‘
Quran: Surah-Dhukan Surah 44 Verses 10-12

Opinions on the Smoke

Ibne Masood’s opinion regarding the verse in which the smoke has been mentioned is that he strongly claims that this is not the smoke which is described as one of the signs of Qiyamah. On the other hand the Holy Prophet being disgusted with the vexation and rebellion of the Quraish had invoked a famine of 7 years for them like that which was set upon the Egyptians in the days of Prophet Yusuf and as such the famine befell them to the starvation of the Makkans, who were so much constrained that they were forced to eat off corpses, hides and skins of animals.

In short, the people of Mecca began to starve. As a rule in intense hunger and ceaseless drought, a kind of smoke is seen in the space between the heaven and the Earth, and also the dust, which rises into the sky from the Earth especially on long rainless days, looks like a smoke to the naked eyes. That thing is here described as a smoke. (Bukhari)

Ibne Masood reported, “Five things have passed, the smoke, the defeat of the Romans, the splitting of the moon, the defeat of the infidels in the Battle of Badr and the punishment.” (Bukhari)

Firstly it should be noted that Ibne Kathir writes that from amongst the Sahaba Ibne Masood is the only one that holds this view. The majority of Ulama in the light of the above and many other Ahadith are of the opinion that the smoke referred to in the verse is the same which is to precede Qiyamah. This has also been related as being the opinion of Ibne Abbas and Hadrat Ali. (Ibne Kathir)

Ali said, “The verse of Dukhan has not taken place” (Ibne Abe Hatim)

Ibne Abbas, Ibne Umar, Hasan, and others said, ”The smoke referred to in the verses is the smoke before Qiyamah which will enter in the ears of the Kuffar and the hypocrites and will affect the Muslims like a cold. The whole world will be like a house on fire. It has not happened. It is to happen.” (Lawami-ul-Anwaar)

Abdullah-b-Abu-Mulaika narrated that I went one morning to Ibne Abbas. He said, ”I didn’t sleep all night. ”I asked, ”Why?” He replied, ”They informed me that a star with a tail appeared. I feared that the smoke may follow and thus I didn’t sleep till it was morning.” (Tabari / Ibne Kathir)

It is clear from the above narration, which is authentic, as Ibne Kathir has mentioned that Ibne Abbas was of the opinion that the smoke is from among the awaited signs. (Ibne Kathir)

Secondly Ibne Kathir writes that Ibne Masood doesn’t relate what he has said back to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ while the opinion that the smoke is from among the awaited signs is related back to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and so the principal of the Hadith is quite clear, ”That which is related back to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ is given priority over that which is not.” (An-Nihaya)

Rising Of The Sun From The West

The rising of the sun from the west is also a major sign of Qiyamah proven by the Qur’an and Sunnah.

“The day when some signs of your Lord will come, no good will it do to a person to believe then, if he believed not before, nor earned good (by performing deeds of righteousness) through his faith.”
Quran: Surah Al-An’aam

The verse is referring to the rising of the sun from the west, as is the opinion of the majority of the commentators. (Tabari/Ibne Kathir)

Imam Tabari, after mentioning the different opinions of the commentators writes, “The most correct opinion in regards to the meaning of this verse is that what is apparent from the reports narrated from Prophet Muhammad ﷺ that he said:

“(lmaan will be of no benefit) when the sun rises from the west.” (Tabari)

Abu Hurayrah said, “The Prophet said, ‘Hasten to do good deeds before six things happen: the rising of the sun from the West, the smoke, the Dajjal, the beast, the (death) of one of you, or general tribulation.’” (Ahmad, Muslim.)

Hudhayfah ibn ‘Ubayd said, “The Prophet came upon us whilst, we were busy in discussion He asked us, ‘What are you talking about?’ We said, ‘We are discussing the Hour.’ He said, ‘It will not come until you see ten signs: the smoke, the Dajjal, the beast, the sun rising from the West, the descent of Jesus son of Mary, Gog and Magog, and three land-slides – one in the East, one in the West, and one in Arabia, at the end of which fire will burst forth from the direction of Aden (Yemen) and drive people to the place of their final assembly.'” (Ahmad.)

Where The Sun Goes

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ one day said, “Do you know where the Sun goes?” They replied, “Allah and his apostle know best.” He (The Holy Prophet ) observed, “Verily it (the sun) glides till it reaches its resting place under the throne. Then it falls prostrate and remains there until it is told, ‘Rise up and go to the place whence you came’ and it goes back.”
Then it continues emerging out from its rising place and then glides till it reaches its place of rest under the throne where it falls prostrate and remains in that state until it is told, ‘Rise up and return to the place whence you came.’ And it returns and emerges out of it’s rising place and then it glides (in such a normal way) that the people do not discern anything (unusual in it) till it reaches its resting place under the throne. Then it would be said to it, ‘Rise up and emerge from the place of your setting,’ and it will rise from the place of its setting.” Prophet Muhammad ﷺ asked “Do you know when it will happen? It will happen at the time when faith will not benefit anyone who has not previously believed or has derived no good from the faith.”
Muslim, Narrated by Abu Zar

Worshippers During The Night Will Remain Till The Sun Rises From The West

I heard Prophet Muhammad ﷺ say, “Verily a night will come upon the people which is equivalent of three of your nights. When it comes those that engage themselves in worship during the night will recognise it. One of them will stand in prayer, read his Hizb (The normal amount he has made the habit of reading) and then go to sleep. Thereafter he will wake up (for the second time) read his Hizb in prayer and go to sleep. While this is the situation the people will begin to shout, scream and call one another. They will say, “What’s this?” With fear they will run to the mosque. To their surprise they will see that the sun has risen from the west. When it reaches the middle of the sky it will return and set in the west.” He said , “That is when Imaan will not benefit anyone (who brings faith after seeing the sign).”
An-Nihaya, Narrated by Abdullah-b-Abu-Owfa

Everyone Will Bring Faith In Seeing The Sign

“Allah’s Messenger said, ‘The hour will not come until the sun rises from the west; and when the people see it, then whoever will be living on the surface of the Earth will have faith, and that is (the time) when no good will it do to a person to believe then, if he believed not before.”
Bukhari, Narrated by Abu Huraira

The real basis of faith is that man believes in the unseen realities on the authority of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ . But when Allah manifests such startling and visible signs which herald the approach of the last hour and by which the veil of the unseen is rent asunder, then the belief becomes meaningless. The rising of the sun from the west will be of great disturbance to nature and will shake the mind of every man and awaken him to see for himself the great power of Allah. At this time the belief of the unseen will lose its importance.

Door Of Repentance Closed

Once the sun has risen from the west the door of repentance will be closed and will remain closed until the Day of Judgement. If any infidel embraces Islam or any Muslim repents and seeks forgiveness for his sins any time after the rising of the sun from the west till the Day of Judgement, it will not be accepted.

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “Verily Allah extends his hand at night so that the sinners of the day may repent and verily extends his hand during the day so that the sinners of the night may repent. (He will keep on doing this) as long as the sun does not rise from the west.”
Muslim, Narrated by Abu-Musa al-Ashari

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “Allah has built a door of repentance in the west the breadth of which is seventy years and it will not close as long as the sun does not rise from the west.”
Safwan-b-Assal / Tirmidhi

The above Ahadith have clearly specified that the extreme limit of the acceptance of repentance is till the sun rises from the west. Once it has risen it will not be accepted.

Ibne Hajar has mentioned many Ahadith which prove that the door of repentance will remain closed till the Day of Judgement and thereafter writes, ”These narration’s give strength to one another, agreeing completely in that when the sun rises from the west the door of repentance will be closed and will not be opened thereafter. And this is not specific with that day but will prolong till the Day of Judgement.” (Fathul- Bari)

The Fire

The last major sign to appear before the Day of Judgement is the fire which will come out from the Yemen and gather the people in the place of their assembly.

In the Hadith of Hudaifa-b-Usaid regarding the Major signs Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “At the end of which a fire would burn out from Yemen and would drive people to the place of their assembly.” (Muslim)

The Prophet said, “The people will be gathered in three ways:
1.The first way will be of those who will wish or have a hope (for paradise) and will have a fear (of punishment).

2.The second batch will be those who will gather riding, two on a camel or three on a camel or ten on a camel.

3.The third batch will be the rest of the people who will be urged to gather by the fire which will accompany them at the time of their afternoon nap and stay with them where they will spend the night, and will be with them in the morning wherever they may be then, and will be with them in the afternoon wherever they may be then.

Bukhari, Narrated by Abu Huraira