Surah Mu’minun (1/2)

Surah Mu’minun (1/2)

بِسۡمِ اللّٰہِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِ In the name of God, the Most-Gracious, the Ever Merciful. قَدۡ اَفۡلَحَ الۡمُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ ۙ﴿۱﴾ الَّذِیۡنَ ہُمۡ فِیۡ صَلَاتِہِمۡ خٰشِعُوۡنَ ۙ﴿۲﴾ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ ہُمۡ عَنِ اللَّغۡوِ مُعۡرِضُوۡنَ ﴿ۙ۳﴾ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ ہُمۡ لِلزَّکٰوۃِ فٰعِلُوۡنَ ۙ﴿۴﴾ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ ہُمۡ لِفُرُوۡجِہِمۡ حٰفِظُوۡنَ ۙ﴿۵﴾ اِلَّا عَلٰۤی اَزۡوَاجِہِمۡ اَوۡ مَا مَلَکَتۡ اَیۡمَانُہُمۡ فَاِنَّہُمۡ غَیۡرُ مَلُوۡمِیۡنَ ۚ﴿۶﴾ فَمَنِ ابۡتَغٰی وَرَآءَ ذٰلِکَ فَاُولٰٓئِکَ ہُمُ الۡعٰدُوۡنَ ۚ﴿۷﴾ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ ہُمۡ لِاَمٰنٰتِہِمۡ وَ عَہۡدِہِمۡ رٰعُوۡنَ ۙ﴿۸﴾ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ ہُمۡ عَلٰی صَلَوٰتِہِمۡ یُحَافِظُوۡنَ ۘ﴿۹﴾ اُولٰٓئِکَ ہُمُ الۡوٰرِثُوۡنَ ﴿ۙ۱۰﴾ الَّذِیۡنَ یَرِثُوۡنَ الۡفِرۡدَوۡسَ ؕ ہُمۡ فِیۡہَا خٰلِدُوۡنَ ﴿۱۱﴾ Those believers succeeded[1] who show humility in their prayer,[2] who desist from frivolity[3] and who pay zakah[4] and who guard their private parts – except for their wives and slave-maidens[5] because in their case there is no blame on them. Indeed, those who desire others besides them, it is they who exceed the limits.[6] – And those who give due regard to their trusts and to their promises,[7] and those who guard their prayers.[8] It is these people who will be the masters[9] of Firdaws, who are the masters of Firdaws.[10] They will abide in it forever. (1-11) وَلَقَدۡ خَلَقۡنَا الۡاِنۡسَانَ مِنۡ سُلٰلَۃٍ مِّنۡ طِیۡنٍ ﴿ۚ۱۲﴾ ثُمَّ جَعَلۡنٰہُ نُطۡفَۃً فِیۡ قَرَارٍ مَّکِیۡنٍ ﴿۪۱۳﴾ ثُمَّ خَلَقۡنَا النُّطۡفَۃَ عَلَقَۃً فَخَلَقۡنَا الۡعَلَقَۃَ مُضۡغَۃً فَخَلَقۡنَا الۡمُضۡغَۃَ عِظٰمًا فَکَسَوۡنَا الۡعِظٰمَ لَحۡمًا ٭ ثُمَّ اَنۡشَاۡنٰہُ خَلۡقًا اٰخَرَ ؕ فَتَبٰرَکَ اللّٰہُ اَحۡسَنُ الۡخٰلِقِیۡنَ ﴿ؕ۱۴﴾ ثُمَّ اِنَّکُمۡ بَعۡدَ ذٰلِکَ لَمَیِّتُوۡنَ ﴿ؕ۱۵﴾ ثُمَّ اِنَّکُمۡ یَوۡمَ الۡقِیٰمَۃِ تُبۡعَثُوۡنَ ﴿۱۶﴾ [If those who deny you do not believe in this,[11] then they should see: "We had created a human being from the essence of clay.[12] Then [for future,] making it into [a dripped] fluid, We placed it in a secure spot.[13] Then We gave this drop of fluid the form of a blood clot and made the clot into a lump of flesh and created bones of the lump and covered the bones with flesh. Then We made it into a new creation altogether."[14] So, blessed is God, the best of creators.[15] Then this also is a fact that after this you have to surely die and that you will definitely also be raised to life on the Day of Judgement.[16] (12-16) وَلَقَدۡ خَلَقۡنَا فَوۡقَکُمۡ سَبۡعَ طَرَآئِقَ ٭ۖ وَمَا کُنَّا عَنِ الۡخَلۡقِ غٰفِلِیۡنَ ﴿۱۷﴾ وَ اَنۡزَلۡنَا مِنَ السَّمَآءِ مَآءًۢ بِقَدَرٍ فَاَسۡکَنّٰہُ فِی الۡاَرۡضِ ٭ۖ وَ اِنَّا عَلٰی ذَہَابٍۭ بِہٖ لَقٰدِرُوۡنَ ﴿ۚ۱۸﴾ فَاَنۡشَاۡنَا لَکُمۡ بِہٖ جَنّٰتٍ مِّنۡ نَّخِیۡلٍ وَّ اَعۡنَابٍ ۘ لَکُمۡ فِیۡہَا فَوَاکِہُ کَثِیۡرَۃٌ وَّ مِنۡہَا تَاۡکُلُوۡنَ ﴿ۙ۱۹﴾ وَ شَجَرَۃً تَخۡرُجُ مِنۡ طُوۡرِ سَیۡنَآءَ تَنۡۢبُتُ بِالدُّہۡنِ وَصِبۡغٍ لِّلۡاٰکِلِیۡنَ ﴿۲۰﴾ وَ اِنَّ لَکُمۡ فِی الۡاَنۡعَامِ لَعِبۡرَۃً ؕ نُسۡقِیۡکُمۡ مِّمَّا فِیۡ بُطُوۡنِہَا وَلَکُمۡ فِیۡہَا مَنَافِعُ کَثِیۡرَۃٌ وَّ مِنۡہَا تَاۡکُلُوۡنَ ﴿ۙ۲۱﴾ وَ عَلَیۡہَا وَعَلَی الۡفُلۡکِ تُحۡمَلُوۡنَ ﴿۲۲﴾ And [not only this] We have made over you seven skies one over the other,[17] and We never became oblivious to Our creatures.[18] And We sent down water from the skies according to a measure,[19] then lodged it in the earth[20] and [if] We [wanted] We could also have taken it back. Then from it We made orchards of dates and grapes spring up for you. There are many fruits in it by which you savour your taste buds[21] and from which you also eat. Similarly, grew that tree[22] also which comes out from Mount Sinai. It sprouts with oil and is also a good curry [in the form of oil] for those who eat.[23] And indeed for you, there is a great lesson in cattle.[24] From among what is in their bellies,[25] We make you drink [milk that is tasty][26] and there are also many other benefits in them for you[27] and from them you also obtain your food and you are also carried on ships[28] [that sail in the sea].[29] (17-22) وَلَقَدۡ اَرۡسَلۡنَا نُوۡحًا اِلٰی قَوۡمِہٖ فَقَالَ یٰقَوۡمِ اعۡبُدُوا اللّٰہَ مَا لَکُمۡ مِّنۡ اِلٰہٍ غَیۡرُہٗ ؕ اَفَلَا تَتَّقُوۡنَ ﴿۲۳﴾ فَقَالَ الۡمَلَؤُا الَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا مِنۡ قَوۡمِہٖ مَا ہٰذَاۤ اِلَّا بَشَرٌ مِّثۡلُکُمۡ ۙ یُرِیۡدُ اَنۡ یَّتَفَضَّلَ عَلَیۡکُمۡ ؕ وَ لَوۡ شَآءَ اللّٰہُ لَاَنۡزَلَ مَلٰٓئِکَۃً ۚۖ مَّا سَمِعۡنَا بِہٰذَا فِیۡۤ اٰبَآئِنَا الۡاَوَّلِیۡنَ ﴿ۚ۲۴﴾ اِنۡ ہُوَ اِلَّا رَجُلٌۢ بِہٖ جِنَّۃٌ فَتَرَبَّصُوۡا بِہٖ حَتّٰی حِیۡنٍ ﴿۲۵﴾ [And do you remember the ship in which you sailed out of the storm?] We[30] had sent Noah as a Messenger to his nation. So, he called out: "O People of My Nation! Worship God. You have no deity other than Him. Then [by associating partners with Him] do you not fear [His wrath?" When Noah gave this message to them,] the leaders of his nation who had denied said: "He is but a mortal like you. He wants to make himself superior to you.[31] Had God wanted to send someone, He would have sent an angel. We have never heard such a thing from our elders of the past.[32] Nothing, he is a mortal inflicted with madness. So, wait for some days, [his whims will cease]."[33] (23-25) قَالَ رَبِّ انۡصُرۡنِیۡ بِمَا کَذَّبُوۡنِ ﴿۲۶﴾ فَاَوۡحَیۡنَاۤ اِلَیۡہِ اَنِ اصۡنَعِ الۡفُلۡکَ بِاَعۡیُنِنَا وَوَحۡیِنَا فَاِذَا جَآءَ اَمۡرُنَا وَ فَارَ التَّنُّوۡرُ ۙ فَاسۡلُکۡ فِیۡہَا مِنۡ کُلٍّ زَوۡجَیۡنِ اثۡنَیۡنِ وَ اَہۡلَکَ اِلَّا مَنۡ سَبَقَ عَلَیۡہِ الۡقَوۡلُ مِنۡہُمۡ ۚ وَ لَا تُخَاطِبۡنِیۡ فِی الَّذِیۡنَ ظَلَمُوۡا ۚ اِنَّہُمۡ مُّغۡرَقُوۡنَ ﴿۲۷﴾ Noah prayed: "My Lord! Help me through the very thing[34] in which they have denied me." So, We sent a revelation to him: "Build an ark under Our watchful eyes and direction.[35] Then when Our directive arrives and the storm bursts,[36] place in it pairs of all kinds [of animals,[37] male and female] two each and [with them] board on it your people also except those among them about whom judgement has already been passed and do not say[38] anything to Me about those who have been unjust to their souls. They are destined to drown." (26-27) فَاِذَا اسۡتَوَیۡتَ اَنۡتَ وَمَنۡ مَّعَکَ عَلَی الۡفُلۡکِ فَقُلِ الۡحَمۡدُ لِلّٰہِ الَّذِیۡ نَجّٰنَا مِنَ الۡقَوۡمِ الظّٰلِمِیۡنَ ﴿۲۸﴾ وَ قُلۡ رَّبِّ اَنۡزِلۡنِیۡ مُنۡزَلًا مُّبٰرَکًا وَّ اَنۡتَ خَیۡرُ الۡمُنۡزِلِیۡنَ ﴿۲۹﴾ اِنَّ فِیۡ ذٰلِکَ لَاٰیٰتٍ وَّ اِنۡ کُنَّا لَمُبۡتَلِیۡنَ ﴿۳۰﴾ Then when you and your companions board the ship, say: "Gratitude be to the God Who has delivered us from these oppressive people," and pray: "My Lord! Disembark me in a blessed way and you are the best of those who disembark."[39] Indeed, there are great signs in this anecdote[40] and We do subject [people to] trials.[41] (28-30) ثُمَّ اَنۡشَاۡنَا مِنۡۢ بَعۡدِہِمۡ قَرۡنًا اٰخَرِیۡنَ ﴿ۚ۳۱﴾ فَاَرۡسَلۡنَا فِیۡہِمۡ رَسُوۡلًا مِّنۡہُمۡ اَنِ اعۡبُدُوا اللّٰہَ مَا لَکُمۡ مِّنۡ اِلٰہٍ غَیۡرُہٗ ؕ اَفَلَا تَتَّقُوۡنَ ﴿۳۲﴾ وَ قَالَ الۡمَلَاُ مِنۡ قَوۡمِہِ الَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا وَ کَذَّبُوۡا بِلِقَآءِ الۡاٰخِرَۃِ وَ اَتۡرَفۡنٰہُمۡ فِی الۡحَیٰوۃِ الدُّنۡیَا ۙ مَا ہٰذَاۤ اِلَّا بَشَرٌ مِّثۡلُکُمۡ ۙ یَاۡکُلُ مِمَّا تَاۡکُلُوۡنَ مِنۡہُ وَ یَشۡرَبُ مِمَّا تَشۡرَبُوۡنَ ﴿۪ۙ۳۳﴾ وَ لَئِنۡ اَطَعۡتُمۡ بَشَرًا مِّثۡلَکُمۡ اِنَّکُمۡ اِذًا لَّخٰسِرُوۡنَ ﴿ۙ۳۴﴾ اَیَعِدُکُمۡ اَنَّکُمۡ اِذَا مِتُّمۡ وَ کُنۡتُمۡ تُرَابًا وَّ عِظَامًا اَنَّکُمۡ مُّخۡرَجُوۡنَ ﴿۪ۙ۳۵﴾ ہَیۡہَاتَ ہَیۡہَاتَ لِمَا تُوۡعَدُوۡنَ ﴿۪ۙ۳۶﴾ اِنۡ ہِیَ اِلَّا حَیَاتُنَا الدُّنۡیَا نَمُوۡتُ وَ نَحۡیَا وَ مَا نَحۡنُ بِمَبۡعُوۡثِیۡنَ ﴿۪ۙ۳۷﴾ اِنۡ ہُوَ اِلَّا رَجُلُۨ افۡتَرٰی عَلَی اللّٰہِ کَذِبًا وَّ مَا نَحۡنُ لَہٗ بِمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ ﴿۳۸﴾ Then, after them, We raised another nation,[42] and also sent to them a messenger[43] from among themselves with the message:[44] "Worship God. You have no other deity than Him. Then do you not fear [His wrath by associating partners with] Him?" The disbelieving leaders of his nation, who had denied the meeting of the last day, and who We had blessed with comfort in the life of this world[45] said: "He is but a mortal like you. He eats what you eat and drinks what you drink. Now if you accept what a person similar to you says, you will definitely end up as losers. Does he threaten you: 'When you die and become clay and bones, will you necessarily be raised up [from your graves]?' Far-fetched, very far- fetched is what you are being threatened with. Life is only the life of this world. We die and live [right here] and we will never be raised to life. Nothing! This is only a human being who has fabricated A falsehood against God and We will never believe in him." (31-38) قَالَ رَبِّ انۡصُرۡنِیۡ بِمَا کَذَّبُوۡنِ ﴿۳۹﴾ قَالَ عَمَّا قَلِیۡلٍ لَّیُصۡبِحُنَّ نٰدِمِیۡنَ ﴿ۚ۴۰﴾ فَاَخَذَتۡہُمُ الصَّیۡحَۃُ بِالۡحَقِّ فَجَعَلۡنٰہُمۡ غُثَآءً ۚ فَبُعۡدًا لِّلۡقَوۡمِ الظّٰلِمِیۡنَ ﴿۴۱﴾ [At this,] the messenger prayed: "My Lord! Help me now through the very thing in which they have denied me." God said: "Now, it will not be long before regret will overcome them." Then a harsh cry[46] overtook them in accordance with Our true promise and We made them withered plants. So, the curse of God be on such oppressive people. (39-41) ثُمَّ اَنۡشَاۡنَا مِنۡۢ بَعۡدِہِمۡ قُرُوۡنًا اٰخَرِیۡنَ ﴿ؕ۴۲﴾ مَا تَسۡبِقُ مِنۡ اُمَّۃٍ اَجَلَہَا وَ مَا یَسۡتَاۡخِرُوۡنَ ﴿ؕ۴۳﴾ ثُمَّ اَرۡسَلۡنَا رُسُلَنَا تَتۡرَا ؕ کُلَّمَا جَآءَ اُمَّۃً رَّسُوۡلُہَا کَذَّبُوۡہُ فَاَتۡبَعۡنَا بَعۡضَہُمۡ بَعۡضًا وَّ جَعَلۡنٰہُمۡ اَحَادِیۡثَ ۚ فَبُعۡدًا لِّقَوۡمٍ لَّا یُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ ﴿۴۴﴾ Then after this, We raised other nations. [They too behaved similarly with their messengers. Thus] no nation ever crosses the time set for it nor falls short of it.[47] Then, We sent messengers in succession. [But it only happened that] whenever its messenger came to a nation, they denied it; then We too made one nation follow the other and made them tales. So, they be cursed who do not profess faith [even after messengers of God conclusively communicate the truth to them].[48] (42-44) ____________ [1]. Ie., it has been decided for them they shall necessarily be successful. This style expresses the certainty of an event that is to take place in the future. It is also found in other languages. When will these glad tidings materialize? This question is answered at the end of the paragraph that they will live in Paradise forever. [2]. Ie., they express obedience, humility and modesty before their Lord. This is precisely the essence of the prayer. If it is present in the prayer, a person feels that not only his back and head, but also his heart has bowed down before God. [3]. The word is: اللَّغْو. It is used for every act that is nonsensical, silly and purposeless. The implication is that believers abstain from things that have no objective and which have no consequence in the life of a person, not to speak of big sins. This, in a passing way, also refers to those frivolous acts which emanated from the disbelievers against Islam and the Muslims. Thus at another instance it is said that when believers hear something nonsensical, they ignore it and tell their addressees that for their own selves are their deeds and for them their deeds. In other words, they neither indulge in ridiculous things nor engage with those who indulge in them. [4]. Zakah refers to that wealth which is given to meet the needs of the collectivity at God's behest to please Him. Like the prayer, it has always existed in the religion of the prohets. Thus the addressees of the Qur'an knew what it meant. It was not something alien to them so that its rates and exemptions be stated. They knew all these things just as they were aware of the rituals and utterances of the prayer. It is evident from the Qur'an that it forms a pair with zakah. While the prayer links a person to God, zakah links him to his fellow human beings. Both these things are necessary for the success mentioned in this verse. [5]. Besides wives, slave-women are mentioned here because till that time slavery had not ended. Thus in spite of the prohibition of enslaving men and women revealed in Surah Muhammad, it was essential to keep this exception for the slaves already found in the society. Later, the Qur'an directed people to do mukatabat with these slaves. It was a declaration of the fact that the slaves had the authority to be liberated through this document. Here it may be kept in mind that at the time of the Qur'an's revelation, slavery was considered essential for economic and social needs the way the institution of interest is in current times. In markets, slave-men and slave-women were bought and sold, and affluent houses had slave-men and slave-women of all ages. In such circumstances, a sudden directive for their emancipation would have resulted in many evils: for livelihood, men would have been forced to resort to beggary and women to prostitution. For this reason, the Qur'an adopted a gradual way to eradicate this evil from the society and after many gradual measures of eradication, revealed the law of mukatabat referred to earlier. After that, no option remained to enslave any person who was able to stand on his feet with virtue and righteousness. [6]. The implication is that ascetism is not what is demanded. Sexual relations with the wife are absolutely permitted. However, except for her, these relations are absolutely prohibited if they are in the form of adultery, temporary marriage (muta'), sodomy or bestiality. They cannot be expected from a Muslim. Yet it should remain clear that there is no possibility in the words of the verse to interpret them as referring to masturbation and other similar acts. They are confined to sexual relations with another individual and cannot relate to self-gratification in this regard. The reason for this is that the preposition عَلَي (on/upon) does not collocate with حَافِظُوْن (those who guard) and thus there necessarily exists a tadmin in this expression, and words such as عن الوقوع علي أحد (from indulging with anyone) are suppressed after حَافِظُوْن. Thus, the object from which the exception is sought in this expression is not the ways of sexual-gratification: it is the individuals with whom a person can establish sexual relations. The verse does not mean that no way of sexual-gratification is allowed except through wives and slave-women; it means that except for wives and slave-women, one cannot appease one's sexual urge with any other individual. [7]. This is a very comprehensive expression for all moral directives in religion. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes: أمأنأت refers to all trusts which our Lord has blessed us with in the form of strengths, abilities, obligations and responsibilities or in the shape of favours, blessings, riches and offspring. Also included in them are things people have been entrusted with or those discharging which is our responsibility according to the norms. In a similar way, also included in it are the covenants and promises our Lord has taken from our nature in the unseen world or taken in this world in the form of the shari'ah through His messengers. Moreover, it also comprises all those promises and covenants which we made with God through our nature or through His prophets. Similarly, it also consists of promises made with a group or an individual in this world, whether they are written or oral or are thought to be understood in a civilized society even if they are not made orally or in writing. It is stated by the Almighty that it is these servants of His who abide by all these trusts and promises. They are neither dishonest and rebellious in the matter of their Lord nor are ones who are unfaithful to His creatures or go back on their word with them. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur'an, vol. 5, 299) [8]. It was with the prayer with which the attributes of the believers began earlier and it is with the prayer with which it has ended now. This shows the significance of the prayer in religion: it guards all the high morals needed in religion and as such is a guarantee for a person to adhere to religion. No doubt, even after that, the onslaughts of Satan continue but he cannot remain permanently lodged in the heart, if a person is regular in the prayer. The prayer continues to ward it off and like a wall protects his heart and mind from the attacks of Satan. It is for this reason that even in times of danger it has been directed that if a person is on foot or on a conveyance, he must offer it. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi has pointed to some other aspects as well. He writes: ... The prayer has been mentioned at the beginning with regard to its essence: humility before God and at the end with regards to punctuality, vigilance and diligence in offering it. This is because the blessings found in the prayer can only be reaped when it has the essence of humility in it and is also continuously guarded. This is the plant of paradise which does not grow unless it is fully nourished. A little negligence leaves it barren and fruitless. In fact, there is a danger that it might completely wither away. If we want to gain real benefit from it, we must save it from the onslaughts of Satan and nurture it very punctually in a very diligent way. It is then when we will get some idea of the comfort of the eyes God has concealed in it. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur'an, vol. 5, 299) [9]. The actual word used is: الْوِارِثُوْنَ. It is evident from its various usages in the Qur'an that many a time it gets stripped from its complete meaning and on such occasions connotes the meaning of simply any "owner" or "master." In the opinion of this writer, precisely this is what has happened here too. [10]. This is the most common word for Paradise and is found in almost all human languages. It is used twice in the Qur'an. Once here and once in verse 107 of Surah al-Kahf. The way it is used there shows that it has become a proper noun to refer to the name of Paradise. [11]. Ie., do not believe that after death people will be raised to life again and there believers will have some place as Paradise to live in. [12]. Ie., in the beginning when in the womb of the earth human beings passed through the same stages before they were born as they now do in the wombs of their mothers. At another place, it is indicated that the essence of clay mentioned here came into being through the addition of water as result of which it took the shape of rotten clay. Then this clay became dry from its top like an egg shell so that after passing through various phases of development when the physical form of a human being was complete, the shell ripped apart and the human being emerged complete and perfect in form. This is similar to how today certain young ones of animals emerge from eggs. [13]. This is a mention of the second phase after which human beings started to be born from the wombs of their mothers and this process is still going on. The details of this process which are stated ahead are well known. Today scientific tools have made it possible for us to view these minute details with precision. It is the miracle of the Qur'an that what it said centuries ago has been validated by human observation. [14]. Ie., blew the spirit in it after his physical form was complete and in fact fashioned it into a unique creation called a human being. [15]. This is a mention of the emotions which should necessarily come to the tongues of all those who reflect on all these stages of creation of a human being. In the verse, a superlative noun is annexed to a plural entity. Hence it is stripped of its superlative connotation and merely expresses the perfection of the attribute. This is a common usage of a superlative in Arabic. Students of the Qur'an should not feel any reluctance in this. [16]. This is the real purport for which the attention of the addressees is directed towards their stages of creation. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes: ... Now the question arises: is all this happening of its own accord? Is this gradual progress in creation and all this nourishment the result of an unrestrained substance called matter? Is all this power and wisdom and all this providence and affection an absolutely purposeless drama which has no consequence or fate? Cannot He Who can fashion a drop of water into a human being, recreate him after he dies? It is these questions in which the foolish, even if they were called by respectable names as philosophers and scientists, have differed. The Qur'an has directed the attention of human beings to their stages of creation in order to give answers to these questions. They do not need to go far. Reflection on their own selves will lead them to the answers of all these questions. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur'an, vol. 5, 304) [17]. The actual words are: سَبْعَ طَرَائقَ. طَرَائق is the plural of طَرِيْقَة. It also connotes "layers." By mentioning the attribute, the Qur'an actually wants to point to the noun it qualifies. Thus it means precisely what is meant by سَبْعَ سَمَاوَاتٍ طِبَاقًا at other places. [18]. Ie., God did not forget human beings after creating them. He is continuously nourishing and nurturing them. [19]. This is the mention of the water which God lifts from the seas into the atmosphere and then sends it down in the form of rain. It is always rained down in a specific measure and quantity except for the purpose of admonition or punishment, when God makes it incessant and therefore destructive. [20]. So that it can be collected and becomes useful for all the creatures. It is only God's grace that this is happening otherwise not a single drop could have stayed on the earth's surface. [21]. These parallel words have been suppressed. [22]. Ie., the olive tree which is specially grown in the area of Sinai. [23]. The actual word is: صِبْغ. It is not defined to imply its benefits. Ie., صبغ طيب للآكلين. This curry was very famous in Arabia and they would consume it like butter as a tasty and energizing liquid. It is known that it also held religious sanctity among the People of the Book. [24]. The word عِبْرَة is used in this verse. It is not defined to magnify it. [25]. At another instance, this conciseness has been elaborated: it refers to the dung and blood found in the bellies. [26]. This is the second object of نُسْقِيْكُمْ. At another instances it is expressed as: خَالِصاً سَآئِغاً لِّلشَّارِبِيِنَ. [27]. These other benefits are also known. They are used as means to transport and as beasts of burden also. They also help in cultivation and harvesting. Their flesh, hides, wool and even faeces are used. [28]. Earlier the creation of human beings was discussed. The purpose was to direct attention towards the possibility of re-creation in the Hereafter. After that, those things are discussed which show God's providence in an elaborate way. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes: Here one must not lose sight of the real thing: the purpose of mentioning these things is to teach a lesson: can it be imagined about the Lord Who has provided every need of a human being in such minute detail that He will dissociate Himself from His ceatures after creating them? And is not the necessary consequence of being bestowed with these favours that He bring about a day in which human beings are held accountable for their responsibilities: those who have fulfilled them should be rewarded and those who have spent their life in oblivion by regarding this world to be a place of amusement be punished? Obviously, human nature and intellect bear witness to this second option. People who do not recognize the right of the Benevolent after obtaining all the favours from Him or serve others besides Him are ingrates and thankless individuals. They shall necessarily bear the consequence of their thanklessness. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur'an, vol. 5, 307) [29]. A camel is metaphorically known as ship of the desert. It is for this reason that the Qur'an has mentioned it and the ship of the sea together. [30]. From here onwards the same premise is validated through historical facts which was earlier validated through the world found within a person and that outside him. However, for this a very subtle type of digression is adopted. Thus with the mention of the ship an incident is mentioned in which people were actually saved through a ship. It is like switching to a topic because of an incidental similarity. [31]. Ie., he wants to become a leader by playing a bluff on them that he is God's envoy. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes: ... One must observe the subtlety [in this sentence]. It is not stated that he wants to snatch away their leadership; on the contrary, it is stated that he wants to make them subservient to him. The poison found in this sentence to incite the simple masses is apparent to every keen eye. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur'an, vol. 5, 313) [32]. The implication is that in the first place they question how a mortal like him can guide them; an angel should have been sent to guide them; moreover, whatever he is presenting is a total deviation from their religion and against the ways of their forefathers. [33]. This they stated to assure their people: the anecdotes of reward and punishment narrated by him should be ignored since they are merely his whims and they should not be over-awed by him. [34]. Ie., from the punishment Noah (sws) had been warning them of and they were making fun of it. Its details are found in Surah Nuh. [35]. It is evident from the Bible that the whole work-plan of the construction of this ark with all its minute details was communicated by God to Noah (sws). This was so that he was able to face the circumstances which he would soon encounter. [36]. The actual words are: فَارَ التَّنُّوْرُ. It is an idiom like حمي الوطيس etc. In such idioms, the meaning of the idiom understood by the connoisseurs of the language is the real thing and not the meaning of the individual words. [37]. This is with regard to a specification that exists in the mind, ie. the pair of every animal that could be needed after the storm. [38]. Ie., it is possible that after seeing his nation drown, Noah (sws) is overcome by emotions of sympathy and compassion. If such is the case, even then he should utter nothing. This is because once the Almighty decides to destroy a nation after conclusive communication of the truth to it, then no one has the option to pray or plead for it. [39]. This is a supplication of migration. In fact, this supplication encompasses a great glad tiding. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes: ... The implication is that now your Lord has delivered them from the wretched and the wicked. He will now make them disembark the way a hospitable host does and wherever He makes them land, He will make that place blessed for them. They will grow and develop there and through these few people and resources of livelihood this world will once again become populated. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur'an, vol. 5, 317) [40]. Ie., the signs that prophets were true prophets and the way this lesser day of jugdement has ensued, that greater day of judgement will also come about – the greater day which these prophets have been emphatically annnouncing. [41]. The implication is that the trials through which Noah (sws) and his companions passed before reaching this phase were destined for them. This is because those trials were a requisite of the scheme on which this world has been created. Deliberation shows that these words also subtly warn the addressees of the prophet: they should not be misled by the circumstances in which they now see the prophet and his companions; they are a requisite of this scheme and this scheme never changes for anyone. [42]. This is a reference to the 'Ad and the Thamud of whom anecdotes have been mentioned in Surah al-A'raf. [43]. Ie. Hud (sws) to the 'Ad and Salih (sws) to the Thamud. [44]. In the verse, the particle اَنْ occurs before which a governing noun (mudaf) is suppressed. This is its translation. [45]. These attributes are stated in a manner that the real reason of their arrogance is highlighted as a result of which they were not able to see the real greatness of the messenger: after seeing his apparent form they wondered how they could accept the superiority of a person who neither had wealth nor political authority. [46]. This connotes God's punishment. It is used in the Qur'an to refer to every form of it. There is no reason to make it specific to the punishments related to noise and sound. [47]. This is an admonition to the addressees: they should not ask for the punishment to be hastened; nations before them that have denied messengers of God could neither meet their fate earlier than what it was destined for nor could they delay it; hence once their term is completed, they too will be destroyed; this period of respite that they have will not be reduced if they impress to hasten it; God has fixed it in accordance with His wisdom; as soon as it ends, not one moment will they have. The decision of God will be implemented right at that time. [48]. It is evident from this that the curse of God still exists for those who did not accept faith even after direct conclusive communication of the truth from the messengers. Thus if they are mentioned even today, God curses them.

Articles by this author

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Sūrah Shūrā

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Surah al-Zumar

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Surah al-Nur (1/2)

Surah Mu’minun (2/2)

Surah Mu’minun (1/2)

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Surah al-Hajj (1/2)

Surah al-Anbiya (2/2)

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Surah Taha (2/3)

Surah Taha (1/3)

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Surah Maryam (1/2)

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Surah al-Kahf (1/2)

Surah Bani Isra’il (1/3)

Surah al-Nahl (2/2)

Surah al-Nahl (1/2)

Surah Ibrahim – Surah al-Hijr (2/2)

Surah Ibrahim – Surah al-Hijr (1/2)

Surah Yusuf (3/3)

Surah Yusuf (2/3)

Surah Yusuf (1/3)

Surah Hud (3/3)

Surah Hud (2/3)

Surah Hud (1/3)

Surah Yunus (2/2)

Surah Yunus (1/2)

Surah al-Tawbah (61-129) (2/2)

Surah al-Tawbah (61-129) (1/2)

Surah al-Tawbah (38-60)

Surah al-Tawbah (1-37) (2/2)

Surah al-Tawbah (1-37) (1/2)

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Surah al-Anfal (41-75) (2/2)

Surah al-Anfal (41-75) (1/2)

Surah al-Anfal (31-40)

Surah Nisa’ (153-176)

Surahs Muzzammil and Muddaththir

Surah al-Anfal (1-30)

Surah al-A’raf (184-205)

Surah al-A’raf (163-183)

Islamic Punishments

Surah al-A’raf (152-162)

Surah al-A‘raf (123-153)

Surah al-A‘raf (80-122)

Surah al-A‘raf (57-79)

Surah al-A‘raf (26-56) (2/2)

Surah al-A‘raf (26-56) (1/2)

Surah al-A‘raf (1-25)

Surah An‘am (128-165) (2/2)

Surah An‘am (128-165) (1/2)

Surah An‘am (100-127)

Surah An‘am (74-99)

Surah An‘am (46-73)

Surah An‘am (25-45)

The Noble Wives of the Prophet (sws)

Surah An‘am (1-24)

Islamic Punishments

Surahs Falaq-Nas

Surahs Lahab-Ikhlas

Surahs Kafirun-Nasr

Surahs Ma‘un-Kawthar

Surah Fil – Surah Quraysh

Surah ‘Asr – Surah Humazah

Surah Qari‘ah – Surah Takathur

Surah Zilzal – Surah ‘Aadiyat


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Surahs Tin – ‘Alaq

State and Government

Surahs Duha-Alam Nashrah

Surahs Shams-Layl

Islam and the State: A Counter Narrative

Surahs Fajr-Balad

The Basis of Legislation

The Shari‘ah of Preaching

Surahs A‘la - Ghashiyah

Variant Readings

Surahs Mutaffifin - Inshiqaq

Surahs Buruj – Tariq

Itmam al-Hujjah [1] of God’s Messengers

Theory of Evolution (2)

Surahs ‘Asr-Humazah

Theory of Evolution (2)

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Surahs Mursalat-Naba

Dealings and Practices of God

Is Democracy Compatible with Islam?

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Surahs Qiyamah-Dahr

Surahs Takwir - Infitar

Sūrahs Muzzammil and Muddaththir

Downfall of the Muslims

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi on Hadith

Your Questions Answered

Surahs Nuh and Jinn

Birth Control

An Interview with the Indian Media

Surahs Haqqah and Ma‘arij

Roles and Responsibilities of Muslims in the West

Surahs Mulk - Qalam

The Punishment of Intentional Murder

Hajj and ‘Umrah

Sūrahs Hashr – Mumtahinah

Religious Extremism

Sūrahs Hadīd – Mujādalah

The Right to make a Will

Talks of the Prophet Muhammad (sws)

Surah Waqi‘ah

The General and the Specific

Sūrah Qamar and Sūrah Rahmān

Surah Tur and Surah Najm

Inheritance of an Orphaned Grandchild

The Sharī‘ah of Preaching

The Source of Religion

Sūrah Mā’idah (90-120)

The Prayer

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Sūrahs Qāf and Dhāriyāt (Part 1/2)

Sūrah Mā’idah (32-63) part (1/2)

Sūrah Mā’idah (32-63) part (2/2)

Dealings and Practices of God

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Sūrah Mā’idah (1-31) part (1/2)

Sūrah Mā’idah (1-31) part (2/2)