Sunday, October 14, 2018

Surah Abasa (He Frowned): Summary of the 80th Chapter of the Holy Quran

Allah, the Almighty, while praises His chosen ones like prophets and messengers profusely in the holy scriptures He revealed onto some, He also admonishes and cautions His chosen ones if they commit something that is not liked. Surah Abasa was revealed on one such occasion. It so happened one day that a chieftain of Makkah was visiting the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and the Prophet of Allah was trying to persuade him to embrace Islam. While both them were engrossed in a serious discussion, a blind man , Ibn Umm Maktum was one who had accepted Islam at a very early stage at Makkah, approached the prophet and requested him to clarify one his query about Islam. The Holy Prophet disliked his interruption and ignored him Allah did not like this act of the prophet and sent down this 42 versed surah as a caution against his frown and ignoring others. 

It is to be noted that the word used was Abasa, which refers to 'He'. The Quran doesn't directly impose the frowning on Muhammad, But the Quran says "He frowned away", making it widely open for interpretation. Thus as per another interpretation, it is concluded that that the person that frowned away was not the Prophet of Allah, but an elite from Banu Umayya who was sitting with the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). And these verses were descended Abdullah bin Umm Maktum entered and the Makkah chieftain when saw a poverty stricken man coming close to him, he drew himself aside, not to get his dress dirty and contracted his facial expressions, got uneasy. In those verses the God stated his acts and criticized and condemned it. [2]

In this Surah, thus Allah has expressed displeasure against ill-treatment of any low level man. And when the whole Surah is considered objectively, the displeasure, in fact, has been expressed against the disbelieving Quraish, who because of their arrogant attitude and indifference to the truth, were rejecting with contempt the message of truth being conveyed by the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). [2]

Here is a segmented translation of the Surah Abasa:
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ 
"In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful"

In the first six verse, the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace), by a subtle method, has been made to realize that it was an act unseemly for him. It has been pointed out to the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) that he had overlooked in the preaching of Islam on that occasion, and for teaching him the same Allah first reproved him on his treatment of Ibn Umm Maktum, and then ' told him what really deserved to occupy his attention as preacher of the Truth and what did not.
[1-16] He frowned and turned away his face because there came up to him the blind man. And what would make you know that he might reform, or heed the admonition, and admonishing might profit him? As for him who is indifferent, to him you attend, though you would not be responsible if he did not reform. And the one 'who comes to you running, of his own will, and fears, from him you turn away. By no means! This is but an admonition. Let him who wills accept it. It is written in scrolls, which are honored, exalted, purified, (and which) remain in the hands of noble and virtuous scribes.
The Prophet has thus been told that he should never give undue importance to those who have forgotten Allah and become proud of their high worldly position, as this may cause a misunderstanding that the Prophet has a selfish motive connected with them, and that his mission would succeed only if they believed, otherwise not, whereas the fact is that the Truth is as self-sufficient of them as they are of the Truth.

The last verse above indicate towards the Holy Qur'an and it is staid that there is no tinge whatever in these scrolls of the impurities with which the other religious books of the world have been polluted. They have been kept pure and secure from all kinds of human speculation and evil suggestions.

From the 17th verse onward till the 32nd verse, the Divine attention turns towards the nonbelievers. Here the mention of "man" does not imply every individual of the human race but the people whose evil traits of character are intended to be censured. At some places the word "man" is used because the evil traits are found in most of human beings, and at others for the reason that if the particular people are pin-pointed for censure, it engenders stubbornness. Therefore, admonition is given in general terms so as to be more effective.
[17-32] Cursed be man! What a perverse disbeliever he is!Out of what has Allah created him? Out of a sperm drop. Allah created him, then set him his destiny, then made the way of life easy for him then caused him to die, and brought. him to the grave. Then whenever He wills, He will raise him up again to life. Nay, but he has not fulfilled the duty that Allah-had assigned to him. Then let man look at his food. We poured down water in abundance, then cleft the earth asunder, then caused to grow in it corns and grapes and Vegetables and olives and dates and lush gardens and fruits of every kind and fodder as a means of sustenance for you and your cattle.
The man is reminded of his creation from a drop of dirty water (sperm) and then his elation and the life made easy for him. He was also given  the opportunity to choose and adopt for himself whichever of the ways, good or evil, of gratitude or ingratitude, of obedience or disobedience, that he pleased. He opened up both the ways before him and made each way smooth and easy so that he could follow any way that he liked. But despite all blessings of Allah, he forgets his creation, not thinking for a minute that one day he has to die and to be graved.

Then We split the earth in clefts: Implies cleaving it in a way that the seeds, or seed-stones, or vegetable seedlings that man sows or plants in it, or which are deposited in it by winds or birds, or by some other means, should sprout up. Man can do nothing more than to dig the soil, or plough it, and bury in it the seeds that God has already created. Beyond this everything is done by God. It is He Who has created the seeds of countless species of vegetable; it is He Who has endowed these seeds with the quality that when they are sown in the soil, they should sprout up and from every seed, vegetable of its own particular species should grow. Again it is He Who has created in the earth the capability that in combination with water it should break open the seeds and develop and nourish every species of vegetable with the kind of food suitable for it. Had God not created the seeds with these qualities and the upper layers of the earth with these capabilities, man could not by himself have arranged any kind of food on the earth. [4]

And then man is told that the End Day will finally come one day as promised by Allah. The day when man will be all alone, brothers will be separated and mothers will forget about their children. None will be able to help the other. On that day everyone will be presented his deeds, good or bad, weighed and then awarded or punished for which ever end the scale tilted.
[33-42] At last, when the deafening blast is sounded, that Day shall man flee from his brother and his mother and his father and his wife and his children. Each one of them, on that Day, shall have enough to occupy him so as to make him heedless of others. Some faces on that Day shall be shining, rejoicing and joyful. And some faces on that Day shall be dusty, and darkness shall be covering them. These will be the disbelievers and the sinners.
Explaining the last set of verses, Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi in his book "Tafhim al-Qur'an - The Meaning of the Qur'an"  has shared a hadith attributed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him): [1]
As per one hadith the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) has been quoted as saying: "On the Day of Resurrection all men will rise up naked." One of his wives (according to some reporters, Hadrat `A'ishah, according to others, Hadrat Saudah, or a woman) asked in bewilderment: "O Messenger of Allah, shall we (women) appear naked on that Day before the people?” The Holy prophet recited these verses and explained that on that Day each one will have enough of his own troubles to occupy him, and will be wholly unmindful of others. 
So beware of one's own deeds from henceforth, for the message for the End Day is very clear: 'Everyone on his very own." And mend ways so that we do not have to be grieved for what bad did we do in this life. May Allah help us chose the righteous way of believers and forgive us all of our sins before we die. Aameen

You may now like to listen to Arabic recitation of Sūrat ʻAbasa with English subtitles:

You may refer to our post "114 Chapters (Sūrahs) of the Holy Qur'an" for translation, meaning and summary of other chapters (Though not complete but building up from 30th Part backwards for chapters in 30th Part are shorter and easier to understand)

Header Calligraphy: Self | References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |
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Thursday, October 11, 2018

Mention of the Attributes of the Blessed in the Holy Quran

“Life” is a heartbeat and a pulse. One is alive as long as the heartbeats - something that is not in anyone's control. But “living” is something that is contingent upon one's abilities and aspirations to appreciate the Nature and people around. Those who can communicate well with Nature and people, live a happy and meaningful living. The more one is vibrant and communicative, the more one enjoys, caring less and enjoying more. As Katharine Hepburn once remarked " If you obey all the rules, you’ll miss all the fun."

Now here lies the difference. Living with or without rules. We all have been created by Allah Almighty for some specific purpose, though unknown to us. And we have been given certain rules and guidelines to stay within while living and finding a meaning for our lives. Religions always set forth these guidelines to live a living as desired by our Divine omnipotent Creator. For as long as we live as directed, we shall be among the blessed ones and ultimately rewarded. But if we transgress from rules and live a living of fun, laughter and momentary wordily happiness, we are likely to faulter and get astray and draw the Divine displeasure. 

So unlike the quotation of Katharine Hepburn quoted above of obeying the rules and missing the fun, if a person lives a life as commanded by the guidelines set forth by his faith, one may miss the colours and fun as those rule-less people enjoying, but can be rest assured that one would be rewarded with good not only here but in the hereafter. Such are the people who are blessed and shall be rewarded.

Islam, like all other faiths, lays down guidelines to live a blessed living. The way is hard yet immensely rewarding. While we see people of other faiths who have altogether discarded religion from their lives and making merry and living a limitless life, open and free sex without bounds of decency and marriage, boozing to an extent that one loses control over self and then committing acts one is only regretful when the hangover is over, Muslims have been warned of such living and repeatedly cautioned in the Holy Qur'an and through practical living model of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to chose between wordily desires and heavenly rewards. Wordily desires, a life without rules, would have a disastrous end in the hereafter, while those who prefer rules and live a life within the confines of Divine guidelines will flourish in the heavens in the hereafter.

Herein under are some of the attributes of the people who when live a living as prescribed for them in the Holy Qur'an and have been foretold of them being blessed:
15) Indeed, the righteous will be among gardens and springs, 16) Accepting what their Lord has given them. Indeed, they were before that doers of good., 17) They used to sleep but little of the night, 18) And in the hours before dawn they would ask forgiveness, 10) And from their properties was [given] the right of the [needy] petitioner and the deprived[Surah Adh-Dhariyat 51:15-19] 
By the righteous it implies those people who believe in the Hereafter when they are given the news of it by the Book of Allah and His Messenger, and adopt the attitude and way of life that they are taught for success in the life hereafter, and refrain from the way about which they had been told that it would involve man in the torment of God. And those sped the major part of their nights in the worship of Allah Almighty and sleep little, and did not follow those who spend their nights in immoral and indecent acts and even never thought of seeking Allah's forgiveness. People who are really pious and righteous, remain ever ready to willingly do whatever good they can, do not let slip any opportunity when they can do some good to the people in the world. The people who recognize the true value of goodness, do not think of helping others as burden for whatever they have has been given by Allah and without His help they could not sustain even a single sin-less day.
16) They arise from [their] beds; they supplicate their Lord in fear and aspiration, and from what We have provided them, 17) And no soul knows what has been hidden for them of comfort for eyes as reward for what they used to do. they spend[Surah As-Sajdah, 32:16 ]
People worship their Lord instead of enjoying sensuous pleasures at night. They are not like the world-worshipers, who seek entertainments in music and dancing, drinking and merry-making, in the night in order to get relief from the day's fatigue and labor and toil. Instead, when they are free from their day's work and duties, they devote themselves to the adoration of their Lord, spend their nights in His remembrance, tremble out of fear of Him, and pin all their hopes on Him. "Who forsake their beds" does not mean that they do not sleep at all at night, but that they spend a part of the night in Allah's worship.]

The following three verses (134-136) of Surah Al e-Imran, Chapter 3, speak of the people who willingly spend to help others both in times of ease hardships for the sake of Allah, and restrain form anger even when being wronged, for anyone who can restrain one's anger and forgives the wrongdoer is far elevated than that who takes revenge and does not forgive, for we also ask forgiveness for ourselves. If we do not forgive others, how can ask the same for us. And then people who commit an immoral act or sin and still are repentant and ask forgiveness from Allah, then who else is there except Allah who can forgive them? Thus here three things are highlighted: Helping others, restraining one's anger and forgiving, and repenting when having sinned. These are the blessed people who will be granted gardens of Paradise where rivers flow underneath with sweet smelling water.

134) Who spend [in the cause of Allah ] during ease and hardship and who restrain anger and who pardon the people - and Allah loves the doers of good; 135) And those who, when they commit an immorality or wrong themselves [by transgression], remember Allah and seek forgiveness for their sins - and who can forgive sins except Allah ? - and [who] do not persist in what they have done while they know. 136) Those - their reward is forgiveness from their Lord and gardens beneath which rivers flow [in Paradise], wherein they will abide eternally; and excellent is the reward of the [righteous] workers. 
In  Surah Ash-Shuraa [42:37-38], those blessed people have been mentioned who are pious and temperate and cool minded: they are not revengeful but forbearing and forgiving by nature. If ever they feel angry at something they control their rage. This characteristic is the best of man's qualities. In fact this attribute has been a major factor of the Holy Prophet's success. According to Hadrat 'A'ishah, 'The Holy Messenger of Allah never avenged himself on anybody, however, when a thing enjoined to be held sacred by Allah was desecrated, he would award the punishment." (Bukhari, Muslim)
37) And those who avoid the major sins and immoralities, and when they are angry, they forgive, 38) And those who have responded to their lord and established prayer and whose affair is [determined by] consultation among themselves, and from what We have provided them, they spend. 
The last verse above imply:
(1) "They spend only out of what lawful provisions We have given them: they do not touch unlawful things for supplementing their expenditure. " (2) "They do not set aside the provisions granted by us, but spend them. " (3) "They spend out of what they have been given in the cause of Allah also: they do not reserve everything for personal use only."
But for him who [the true believer of Islamic Monotheism who performs all the duties ordained by Allah and His Messenger Muhammad , and keeps  away (abstain) from all kinds of sin and evil deeds prohibited in Islam and fears standing before his Lord], says Allah in last portion of Surah Ar Rahman: [1]
There will be two Gardens (i.e. in Paradise). With spreading branches; In them (both) will be two springs flowing (free), In them (both) will be every kind of fruit in pairs. Reclining upon the couches lined with silk brocade, and the fruits of the two Gardens will be near at hand. Wherein both will be those (maidens) restraining their glances upon their husbands, whom no man or jinn before them. (In beauty) they are like rubies and coral. Is there any reward for good other than good? And besides these two, there are two other Gardens (i.e. in Paradise). Dark green (in colour). In them (both) will be two springs gushing forth water.  In them (both) will be fruits, and date- palms and pomegranates. Therein (gardens) will be fair (wives) good and beautiful;  Houris (beautiful, fair females) restrained in pavilions; Whom no man or jinn have ever touched before. Reclining on green cushions and rich beautiful mattresses. 
Wouldn't you after reading this like to induce attributions of the blessed in you to be blessed and awarded Jannah, Paradise?

Photo: Jalal HB | References: | 1 | 2
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Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Misleading Concept of Moon god Allah

Since emergence of Islam as one of the dominant religion, the people of the earlier Divine Books and faith, specially the Jews and Christians have started to feel a threat to their faiths as more and more people of other faiths are converting to Islam everyday that passes. For this very reason, we usually come across abject propaganda by them in the shape of hate literature and caricatures.

In one of our earlier posts "Jewish perception of Islam as Idolatrous" we put across a misleading perception by the Jews labeling Islam as Idolatrous by contending that the Muslims worshiped Muhammad (The revered last prophet of Allah) rather than the God the Jews worshiped. Please read our post on the subject with reference given below.

Today, I came across yet another concept, this time by the Christians, in which they believe that Muslims believe in the "moon god" as was done in the times before Islam. The idea was proposed by archaeologist Hugo Winckler in 1901. It was proliferated in the United States in the 1990s, first via the publication of Robert Morey's pamphlet The Moon-god Allah: In Archeology of the Middle East (1994), eventually followed by his book The Islamic Invasion: Confronting The World's Fastest-Growing Religion (2001). Morey's ideas were popularized by cartoonist and publisher Jack Chick, who drew a fictionalized cartoon story entitled "Allah Had No Son" in 1994. [1]

Many websites of Bible Societies and even otherwise of individual Christians have tried to prove that the moon-god found in the pre-Islamic era, both in Arabia and otherwise is in fact the same Allah that Muslims worship after Muhammad (peace be upon him, the Prophet of Allah) introduced "his" religion to come up with a religion to contest that of Jews and Christians. And have thus tried to present many photos of artifacts and relics showing worship of moon. They also content that Allah is the name derived from the moon-gods.

Then there is yet another question posed by the Christians: "Why is Allah never defined in the Qur'an? Why did Muhammad assume that the pagan Arabs already knew who Allah was?" Muhammad was raised in the religion of the Moon-god Allah. But he went one step further than his fellow pagan Arabs. While they believed that Allah, i.e. the Moon-god, was the greatest of all gods and the supreme deity in a pantheon of deities, Muhammad decided that Allah was not only the greatest god but the only god. My only reaction here is from my Christian friends: Has God been "defined" in the Old or New Testaments or an other holy scriptures before Islam? They wont find an answer to this but Holy Qur'an very clearly defines Allah in Allah's own words in the Holy Qur'an. In fact, one of the main themes of the Quran is to describe Allah and his oneness his attributes and actions. Here are some excerpts from the Holy Qur'an:

إِنَّنِي أَنَا اللَّـهُ لَا إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّا أَنَا فَاعْبُدْنِي وَأَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ لِذِكْرِي 
Allah Himself tells who He is: "Indeed, I am Allah. There is no other god except Me. So, worship Me and establish prayer for My remembrance." [Al Quran, Surah Ta Ha, Chapter 20, verse 14]
Allah - there is no deity except Him, the Ever-Living, the Sustainer of [all] existence. Neither drowsiness overtakes Him nor sleep. To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth. Who is it that can intercede with Him except by His permission? He knows what is [presently] before them and what will be after them, and they encompass not a thing of His knowledge except for what He wills. His Kursi extends over the heavens and the earth, and their preservation tires Him not. And He is the Most High, the Most Great. [Al Qur'an, Chapter 2, Surah Albaqarh, 255]
[All] praise is [due] to Allah , who created the heavens and the earth and made the darkness and the light. Then those who disbelieve equate [others] with their Lord. It is He who created you from clay and then decreed a term and a specified time [known] to Him; then [still] you are in dispute. And He is Allah , [the only deity] in the heavens and the earth. He knows your secret and what you make public, and He knows that which you earn. [Al Quran, Surah Al-An'am Chapter 6 verses 1-3] 
It is He who made the sun a shining light and the moon a derived light and determined for it phases - that you may know the number of years and account [of time]. Allah has not created this except in truth. He details the signs for a people who know. {Al Quran Surah Yunus Chapter 10, verse 5] 
There can be no more proofs that Christians would want, as these are just three references that define Allah.

It is very amazing that the Christians have tried to correlate the word Allah with moon-god while forgetting that Allah is an Arabic word and in the lands of Arab the Arabic language has been there since centuries. They object to word Allah as if Muhammad (peace be upon him, the Prophet of Allah) had coined it. It may be recalled that name "Allah" was in use even  before the birth of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).  A proof of that is his father was named as Abdullah (meaning: servant of Allah). Therefore it should not be misunderstood that the name of Allah was introduced by Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

The word Allah as translation of God also appears in countless Bibles translated into Arabic, but strangely then no Christian objects to it. Sarah Lynn Johnson, a Christian Woman married to Muslim Man also substantiate this contention in an question -answer session on "Why do some non-Muslims say Allah was the moon god of Arab polytheists before Islam?" says: 
Allah is the Arabic word for God. Arab Christians also call God, “Allah.” Anyone who speaks Arabic will do this because that is the word in Arabic. My husband is Egyptian; when he refers to God while speaking English, he calls him God. When he is speaking Arabic, he calls him Allah. [2]
I came across an interesting revelation in one of the Christian sites which claimed that "The reader must know that Islam, Judaism, and organized Christianity all worship a trinity of gods." Now this is the most absurd statement I have ever come across. I as a Muslim know that all Muslims squarely and flatly reject the concept of Trinity (Father, son and the holy ghost) as all Muslims strictly believe in one monotheist Allah and reject all forms of polytheism. 

In order to be a Muslim, one must surrender oneself to God, and believe in the oneness of God, in the sense of His being the only Creator, Preserver and Nourisher. Having believed in oneness of Allah, a Must also acknowledge the Allah alone deserves to be worshiped, and thus abstains from worshiping any other thing or being.

Now coming back to the concept of moon-god Allah. In the Holy Qur'an, Allah makes it very clear that all landmarks like sun, moon and stars and every celestial object are His signs of creation and are NOT to bow down to:
"And from among His Signs are the night and the day, and the sun and the moon. Do not bow down (prostrate) to the sun nor to the moon, but only bow down (prostrate) to "Allah" Who created them, if you (really) worship Him." [Holy Quran Surah Fussilat, 41st Chapter, verses 37-43]
If this commandment does not satisfy the proponents of moon-god Allah, then they may like to read the following verse regarding the status of moon:
"They ask you about the new moons. Say: These are signs to mark fixed periods of time for mankind and for the pilgrimage." [Holy Quran Surah Al Baqarah Chapter 2, verse 189]
The above two verses, thus clearly and amply make it clear that the celestial landmarks are signs of Allah's creation and to mark fixed periods of time (through sun) of the day and days and months (through moon).

Now as for the usage of moon on most of the flags of the Islamic countries does not mean that Muslims revere moon. In fact in the early days of Islam and of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), Islamic armies and caravans flew simple solid-colored flags (generally black, green, or white) for identification purposes. In later generations, the Muslim leaders continued to use a simple black, white or green flag with no markings, writing, or symbolism of any kind.

In fact the use of the crescent symbol on Muslim flags and roof finial on Islamic buildings originated when the Ottoman Empire won over the city of Byzantium (later known as Constantinople and Istanbul) and adopted the crescent moon and star of the Byzantium's existing flag and symbol. Thereafter other Muslim countries too started using the crescent and star combination in their flags and roof finial on masjid. [3]

No matter what idols related to the moon god have been discovered of the pre-Islam era, this does not have any effect on the post Islam era. In fact right from the day the message of Allah dawned on to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), there was no doubt as to the oneness of Allah, the one true God that was henceforth to be followed and worshiped. And with the capture of Makkah, the first thing that the Prophet of Allah dis was wipe out all 360 plus idols kept in and outside of Ka'aba and restored it as a pure and clean house of Allah as was built by Prophet Abrahim (Abraham) and his son Ismael (peace be upon them both). And thus from that day on, Islam wiped out all traces of idolatry and pagan practices from Arabia. Did any idol of moon-god figured out thereafter?

And last point to end up the useless discussion originated by the Christians to find a lame excuse to propagate against the Muslims. Over the years, the crescent moon has become a symbol of Muslim faith, like the Star of David for Jewish people, and the Cross for Christians. Muslims don’t worship the moon, nor do Jewish people worship stars or Christians worship the letter t. Please ponder over it !!

Please read a detailed Reply to Robert Morey's Moon-God Allah Myth: A Look At The Archaeological Evidence

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Monday, October 8, 2018

A Racist and Anti Islam Mindset finally finds Solace in Islam

My Ultimate Decision, the name and theme of my blog basically hinges about people of other faiths finally taking their Ultimate Decision of life by discarding their earlier faiths and embracing Islam. I have in the past shared circumstances and reasons by some of those who questioned their beliefs but did not find the satisfying answers till they voluntarily started reading about Islam and the Holy Qur'an when the truth started to unfold on them and took them into the final religion sent by Allah Almighty through Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

I have read many sites of Christianity which outrightly reject Islam as a Divine religion and trying to base their anti Islamic mindset - but when Islam provides answers to the very practicing Christians or those who have become racist with anti Islam mindset, many chose to be come practicing Muslims. In fact better than born Muslims.  

And this post today is of a man who was raised in a family where the father was extremely racist and anti Islam. Naturally, someone living in the United States where every incident of shooting is attributed to "Muslims fundamentalists" if the shooter turns out to be a Muslim and labelled as terrorist, but when a Christian does the same, he or she is simply shrugged of as a case of troubled family or bringing up,

Now back to the story of this young Christian who became a bully and extremely racist and anti Muslim and became was heavily involved in the racist neo-Nazi skinhead movement. But deep inside hi, he always felt bad about what he dis but continued doing so for it also pleased him hurting others. He confides that "I remember a Mexican schoolmate of mine asking me when I was 16 "why do you hang out with those losers, you are better than that." He was right, he recalls, but I guess there was a part of me that, even though I hated my father for what he was doing to the family, that I wanted to be just like him. That is where my racism and hatred came from.

Then by age of 23, he started to seriously think of changing and finding answers to keep his mind at rest. He says: 
During this time the Intifada was raging in Palestine. My father, racist and anti-Semite though he was, had always supported the Jewish state. I now think that he hated Jews, as well as any one else who wasn't white, but he hated the Arabs more than he hated the Jews, so that is why he supported Israel. As I was rethinking everything I was taught when I was younger I decided to take a closer look at this struggle in the Middle East.
So he started reading about history of Middle East and the Arabs, and Islam to see why his father so hated this religion. And as his insight into the Arabs, Middle East and Islam broadened, he started to find answers of the questions that he had had about religion. He says:
From the very beginning some things struck a chord with me and answered doubts I had always had concerning the religion I was raised in. I had always taken issue with the idea that God would ever have offspring. From my reading I recognized this belief as one pulled from pagan sources. Zeus, Odin, and numerous other pagan gods all had children. In the case of Odin, his followers even believed he hung on a tree, much like Christians believe that Jesus (PBUH) hung on a cross. Odinists, the name given to the followers of this ancient Northern European religion, also believed in a trinity of sorts formed by Odin, his son Thor, and his consort Freja. It was clear this innovation of the Christians did not have its basis in God, but in previous pagan beliefs.
The other issue that he had always struggle with was the concept of original sin. The idea that God could be so unjust as to hold himself and everyone else responsible for the sins of others who died thousands of years before me just seemed so unjust. He says:
I had a basic concept of God, and the idea He could be so unjust to do such a thing just did not sit well with me. It always seemed to me that Christians just didn't have the answer to these questions, and if they did, their answers just reinforced these unjust positions.
I looked to Judaism, but that religion offered more questions than answers as well. Their attitude towards the prophets, peace be upon them all, was disgraceful. Their religious texts accused these greatest of men of the most terrible crimes and I refused to believe God would pick such men to lead his people on earth.
If Judaism held such beliefs how could I look to them for guidance?
Reading more  about Islam was like finding a place of tranquility and solace for he finally came to the understanding that Islam had all of the answers, for understanding of Islam cleared up the confusion of the lie of the trinity, and asserted Jesus' (pbuh) true role as a prophet, and not the son of God. Islam revered all of the prophets, peace and blessings of God be upon them, and recognized them for the great people they were. In Islam, and the values it promotes, 

He saw the answer to his problems and questions, and the future of mankind. "The issue was to now try to implement Islam in my life," says Marc Springer, the narrator of his experience of other religions and finally coming home to the world of Islam - the final religion by Allah for the entire mankind till the Day of Resurrection.

Blessed are those like Marc Springer who having experienced their earlier faiths, questioned them and when found no answers, found the same in Islam, in the commandant contained in the Holy Qur'an and the teachings and way of life of the last of the prophets, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).  Marc Springer later married a Muslim woman with her ancestral linkage to Saudi Arabia and lives a happily married life in Washington DC.

You may read the complete narration of Marc Springer' change of faith from the source given below.

Photo | Photo of Marc Springer courtesy Source
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Friday, October 5, 2018

Landmark Holy Place of Islam: Masjid Qiblatain (Masjid of Two Prayer Directions)

New religions take time to mature and cement their basic foundations. When Allah chose Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), a pious, respectful and trusted man from one of the leading tribes of Makkah to be His last prophet through whom the last of the divine religions, Islam, was to be sent to the mankind, the pagans of Makkah were the most intolerable and hostile audience the Prophet of Allah had to face. Therefore, the Divine messages trickled down slowly and it took some 23 years to complete the religion as Islam solidified its position unto the disbelievers and nonbelievers.
Masjid Al Aqsa, Jerusalem
Initially, when the five prayers were made obligatory for the Muslims, the prayer direction  or the Qibla (in Arabic) was chosen to be the Masjid Al Aqsa in the holy lands located on a hill in the Old City of Jerusalem that for thousands of years has been venerated as a holy site, in Judaism and Christianity and from thence by Islam too. Right from the early days of Islam, Muslim's Qibla remained the direction of Masjid Al Aqsa for over 13 years, that is from 610 CE until 623 CE. However, seventeen months after the migration of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) from Makkah to Medina the Qiblah became oriented towards the Ka'aba, Masjid Al Haraam, in Makkah.

When the Muslims came to Medina and started praying in the direction of Masjid Al Aqsa, equally revered by the Jews and which also the direction of their prayers, the Jews initially rejoiced the fact that the Prophet of Islam had to take their sacred city as a Qibla. And it was also thought by the Muslims that by having a common Qibla, the two religions would foster religious harmony and cordial relations in future. But as the spread of Islam started to gain momentum, the Jews of Medina felt threatened of losing their religious identity and as a retaliation started to mock the Muslims for not having a Qibla of their own. "Muhammad claims that his is an independent religion and his law supersedes all previous laws, but he does not yet have an independent 'qiblah' and offers his prayers facing the 'qiblah' of the Jews".

This started hurting the Prophet of Allah and he would invariably go out at night and look towards the Heavens for a Divine command regarding the Qibla for Muslims.

The silent prayers of the Prophet of Allah were finally answered and on that fateful day of 2 Hijrah when the Prophet of Allah was leading the noon prayers, came the Divine commandment:
We have certainly seen the turning of your face, [O Muhammad], toward the heaven, and We will surely turn you to a qibla with which you will be pleased. So turn your face toward al-Masjid al-Haram. And wherever you [believers] are, turn your faces toward it [in prayer]. Indeed, those who have been given the Scripture well know that it is the truth from their Lord. And Allah is not unaware of what they do. [Surah Al Baqara 2:144]
The Prophet of Allah had almost finished the two rakah or the cycles, when the Divine message arrived to change the direction of Qibla towards Ka'aba, Masjid Al Haraam, in Makkah. Thus the messenger of Allah changed the direction which was almost opposite to the direction of Masjid Al Aqsa and offered the remaining two cycles of the prayers. 
Masjid Al Haraam, Ka'aba - Makkah
Due to this change of Qibla, the masjid became to known as the Masjid Qiblatain, the Masjid with two Qiblas or the prayer directions.

The direction change made Muslims joyous, but it was a day of mourning for the Jews. The Muslims had now become completely independent of them and a prophecy in their old books had been fulfilled that the last of the great prophets would change the orientation of the religion of Allah from Jerusalem to the Ancient House of Abrahim (upon him be peace). Their elders went as a body to the Prophet (ﷺ) and said that if he would change his orientation back to Jerusalem, then they would follow him. [2]

Allah (ﷻ) revealed in the Quran in Surah al-Baqarah: 
“And even if thou broughtest unto those who have received the Scriptures all kinds of portents, they would not follow thy Qibla, nor canst thou be a follower of their Qibla; nor are some of them followers of the Qibla of others. And if thou shouldst follow their desires after the knowledge which has come unto thee, then surely wert thou of the evil doers.” [2:145]
While most of the Muslims accepted the Divine commandant wholeheartedly as Ka'aba was well known to them, some of Medina had some dual feelings as they failed to understand the wisdom behind the change in the Qibla direction. In fact it was a test for the true believer, because the true believer, unlike others, accepts the commands of Allah without any doubt:
“And thus we have made you a just community that you will be witnesses over the people and the Messenger will be a witness over you. And We did not make the qiblah which you used to face except that We might make evident who would follow the Messenger from who would turn back on his heels. And indeed, it is difficult except for those whom Allah has guided. And never would Allah have caused you to lose your faith. Indeed Allah is, to the people, Kind and Merciful.” [Al-Baqarah 2:143]
And yet again:
“Whatever Verse (revelation) do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, We bring a better one or similar to it. Know you not that Allah is able to do all things?” [Al-Baqarah 2:106]
Thus from then on, Masjid Al Haraam, Ka'aba in Makkah became the direction for all the Muslims living anywhere in the world. Today more than a billion Muslims living all over the world face Ka'aba - an act that induces unity and focus of one's faith.

A few words about the Qibla al-Qudsiyya: It is the name given to a small sect of the Jews of Medina who converted to Islam in 622/623. When the Qibla was changed, these Jews protested and finally declined the change. They remained Muslims, but did not accept any of the verses in the Qur'an written after the date of the split. Little is known of the existence of these Islamic Jews afterwards. [3]

You may now watch a video of Masjid Qiblatain as shared on YouTube:
Next time you are in the holy lands and visit Medina, do not forget to visit this very important landmark of Islamic history. Masjid Qiblatain lies three miles away from Masjid an-Nabwi in Medina.

Photo (Masjid Qiblatain) | Photos (Masjid Al Aqsa / Masjid Al Haraam, Ka'aba | 
References: | 1 | 2 | 3 |
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Please share this page to your friends and family members through Facebook, WhatsApp or any means on Social Media so that they can also be benefited by it and better understand Islam and the Holy Qur'an - Insha Allah (Allah Willing) you shall be blessed with the best of both worlds.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Surah Al Qamar: The Moon (Summary of 54th Chapter of Holy Quran)

Sūrat al-Qamar is the 54th chapter of the Qur'an with 55 ayat and three rukuh. The naming of this chapter with one of the most visible landmark of the celestial world after the sun explains the importance the moon carries in Islam. In the Holy Qur'an, at 28 different places the mention of moon has been made.

In fact moon has always been important to the Arabs, who evading the scorching sun and extremely hot days preferred to travel at night - a time when the cool light of the moon and starts allowed them to travel with ease and also making use of the navigational properties that night afforded to them.

The most important aspect of moon is that it helps to keep a track of time. Unlike the sun which remains round bright and fiery throughout the day, the moon from its first day shape of a crescent and then its varying increasing shapes that changes each day to full moon, the 14th day, and then decreasing till it became as thin as a date stalk. Allah says in 38th chapter (Surah Al Ya-Sin):
"And the moon, We have measured for it mansions (to traverse) till it returns like the old dried curved date stalk."
There is lot more that is to be talked about the importance of moon and some contraventions by the Christians, which we shall discuss in a separate post as mention of issues would digress us from the subject at hand: The meaning and explanation of  Sūrat al-Qamar.

Being one of the early revelations, this chapter was revealed entirely in Makkah and contains warnings to those who disbelieve in the word of Allah, brought to them through Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), followed by tales of some of the earlier people and prophets as reference and forewarning to those not listening to the Prophet of Allah and telling them how wrath of Allah fell on those who mocked the prophets and chose to remain on the path other than of Allah. In the last part, Allah once again concentrate on His message similar to the one in first part of the surah.

Now lets us read the translation and brief explanation of each part for better understand:
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ 
"In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful"
Part - I
1. The Hour has drawn near, and the moon has been cleft asunder (the people of Makkah requested Prophet Muhammad  to show them a miracle, so he showed them the splitting of the moon). 2. And if they see a sign, they turn away, and say: "This is continuous magic."
The opening two verses of this chapter clearly explain the splitting of the moon, when they pagans of Makkah insisted of the Prophet of Allah to show them some sign his prophet hood. A doubt here arises in minds of some that going by the literal meaning of the first first verse, it is in fact indication of the Day of Resurrection when the moon will split and not related to actual splitting of the moon as was seen by many nonbelievers. If this verse was indicating towards the Day of Resurrection, then how come the second verse justifies the first verse. It was in fact after the moon was slit into two and then united again that the nonbelievers mocked the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and called the moon split just an act of magic. Read the detailed discussion at [4].
3. They belied (the Verses of Allah, this Qur'an), and followed their own lusts. And every matter will be settled [according to the kind of deeds (for the doer of good deeds, his deeds will take him to Paradise, and similarly evil deeds will take their doers to Hell)]. 4. And indeed there has come to them news (in this Qur'an) wherein there is (enough warning) to check (them from evil), 5. Perfect wisdom (this Qur'an), but (the preaching of) warners benefit them not, 6. So (O Muhammad ) withdraw from them. The Day that the caller will call (them) to a terrible thing. 7. They will come forth, with humbled eyes from (their) graves as if they were locusts spread abroad, 8. Hastening towards the caller, the disbelievers will say: "This is a hard Day."
The verses 3-8 are repetition of many such verses wherein the behavior of the nonbelievers is shown to be that of arrogance and heedlessness to the commandments of Allah brought to them by the Prophet of Allah. And they continue to deny the coming of a day when even the dead will be raised from the graves and made answerable to their bad or otherwise deeds. And here is a message for the Prophet of Allah too that if the nonbelievers do not pay an heed to the message brought to them, then they should be left at their own for Allah alone is powerful to deal with them not only in this world but in the hereafter too.

Part II

In the middle part of the chapter, incidents from the bygone days have been narrated as a caution for  the nonbelievers that there have been people like them before too on whom prophets were sent but they did not listen to them and teased them. And then the faced the wrath of Allah for not believing in the guidance on truth sent to them.
9. The people of Nuh (Noah) denied (their Messenger) before them, they rejected Our slave, and said: "A madman!" and he was insolently rebuked and threatened. 10. Then he invoked his Lord (saying): "I have been overcome, so help (me)!" 11. So We opened the gates of heaven with water pouring forth.  12. And We caused the earth to gush forth with springs. So the waters (of the heaven and the earth) met for a matter predestined. 13. And We carried him on a (ship) made of planks and nails, 14. Floating under Our Eyes, a reward for him who had been rejected! 15. And indeed, We have left this as a sign, then is there any that will remember (or receive admonition)? 16. Then how (terrible) was My Torment and My Warnings? 17. And We have indeed made the Qur'an easy to understand and remember, then is there any that will remember (or receive admonition)?
In the verses 9-17, the mention of Prophet Nuh (Noah, peace be upon him) and his people has been narrated. His people too condemned him for not being a prophet and refused to listen to him. When the Prophet was finally tired of trying, he prayed to Allah for their condemnation. And then Allah asked him to build a big boat, enough to house pairs of all living animals and birds of the time. And then the wrath of Allah struck in the form of the greatest flood ever, which drowned everything and everyone except those on board, those who believed in the Prophet and the Divine commandments. Renowned Hadith comiler Imam Bukhari, Ibn Abi Hatim, Abdur Razzaq and Ibn Jarir have related traditions on the authority of Qatadah saying that at the time the Muslims conquered Iraq and al-Jazirah, this Ark still existed on Mount Judi (and according to a tradition, near the settlement of Baqirda), and the early Muslims had seen it.
18. 'Ad (people) belied (their Prophet, Hud), then how (terrible) was My Torment and My Warnings? 19. Verily, We sent against them a furious wind of harsh voice on a day of evil omen and continuous calamity. 20. Plucking out men as if they were uprooted stems of date-palms. 21. Then, how (terrible) was My Torment and My Warnings? 22. And We have indeed made the Qur'an easy to understand and remember, then is there any that will remember (or receive admonition)? 
The second incident quoted is that of Prophet Hud (peace be upon him) and his people of Ād, an ancient tribe in Southern Arabia, in a location referred to as "al-ʾAḥq̈āf" or "the Sandy Plains," or "the Wind-curved Sand-hills"). ʿĀd is regarded as one of the original Arab tribes, the "lost Arabs". Their capital may have been what is known as "Iram of the Pillars."

Like the nonbelievers of the past, they too rejected the teachings of a monotheism as preached by Hud (peace be upon him), the Prophet of Allah. They were caught by strong winds that swept away their dwellings and Plucking out men as if they were uprooted stems of date-palms. Some say the winds continued for seven days and eight nights. "It is said that the day on which the storm started was Wednesday. From this the idea spread that Wednesday was a day of ill-luck, and no work should be started on this day. But there is no authenticity in this supposition. [1]
23. Thamud (people also) belied the warnings. 24. For they said: "A man! Alone from among us, that we are to follow? Truly, then we should be in error and distress or madness!" 25. "Is it that the Reminder is sent to him [Prophet Salih (Saleh)] alone from among us? Nay, he is an insolent liar!" 26. Tomorrow they will come to know, who is the liar, the insolent one! 27. Verily, We are sending the she-camel as a test for them. So watch them [O Salih (Saleh)], and be patient! 28. And inform them that the water is to be shared between (her and) them. Each one's right to drink being established (by turns). 29. But they called their comrade and he took (a sword) and killed (her). 30. Then, how (terrible) was My Torment and My Warnings? 31. Verily, We sent against them a single Saihah (torment - awful cry, etc.), and they became like the dry stubble of a fold-builder. 32. And indeed, We have made the Qur'an easy to understand and remember, then is there any that will remember (or receive admonition)? 
Verses 23-32 narrate how people of Thamud belied warnings brought to them by Allah's Prophet Salih (Saleh, peace be upon him). When the Prophet brought them Allah's message, they refuted him for 1) He was a human being and not a super-human person so that we may regard him as superior to ourselves, 2) He was a member of their own nation, and in no way superior to the rest and 3) He was a single man, being not a prominent chief with a large following, or an army of soldiers.

Then Allah sent a she-camel as a trial for them. The she-camel appeared suddenly froma mountain, gave birth to a calf and died. Now to riase the calf, the Prophet told his people that one day she would drink the water all by herself and the next day they would be allowed to have water for themselves and their cattle. On the day of her turn neither would come to any of the springs and wells to take water nor bring his cattle for watering. The she-camel roamed at will in their settlements for a long period of time. But one day a pampered chief by the rest killed the she-camel. To this evil deed, Allah sent a single blast against them, and they became like the trampled twigs of a sheep pen-builder. [4]
33. The people of Lout (Lot) belied the warnings. 34. Verily, We sent against them a violent storm of stones (which destroyed them all), except the family of Lout (Lot), whom We saved in last hour of the night, 35. As a Favour from Us, thus do We reward him who gives thanks (by obeying Us). 36. And he [Lout (Lot)] indeed had warned them of Our Grasp, but they did doubt the warnings! 37. And they indeed sought to shame his guest (by asking to commit sodomy with them). So We blinded their eyes, "Then taste you My Torment and My Warnings." 38. And verily, an abiding torment seized them early in the morning. 39. "Then taste you My Torment and My Warnings." 40. And indeed, We have made the Qur'an easy to understand and remember, then is there any that will remember (or receive admonition)?
Then there is mention of Prophet Lut (Lot, peace be upon him) and his people who were involved in the heinous crime of same sex relations among men. Prophet Lut tried his best to convince them of leaving this bad habit and go  to their women instead. But he was mocked too. Then as a test, Allah sent two of his angels as guests to the Prophet. But the Prophet's wife, who was more loyal to her tribe than her husband, leaked the news of the prescience of tow adorable young men in her house. So the people of the town flocked Prophet Lut's house with lustful desires and demanded the two men be handed over to them. When all efforts of the Prophet failed to stop them and they almost stormed his house, their eyes were blinded by the Divine decree and the angels asked the Prophet to leave the city along with his family. He was told not to look back for the wrath of Allah would befell on his people. While they all reached to safety, his unfaithful wife turned back to have a last look at her tribe, but was immediately turned to ashes and died like all other evil minded people of  her tribe.

The details of this story have been given in (Surah Houd, Ayats 77-83) and (Surah Al-Hijr, Ayats 61-74), and one of our earlier posts: Prophet Lut and Allah's wrath on his people.
41. And indeed, warnings came to the people of Fir'aun (Pharaoh) [through Musa (Moses) and Harun (Aaron)].  42. (They) belied all Our Signs, so We seized them with a Seizure of the All-Mighty, All-Capable to carry out what he Will (Omnipotent).
Verses 42-43 very briefly touch upon Prophet Musa (Moses, peace be upon him) and the Pharaoh for there are many detailed account od Prophet Musa and Pharaoh in the Holy Qur'an. In fact Prophet Musa is the most talked about prophet in the Holy Qur'an. Suffice to say here that when the Pharaoh did not believe in teaching of Prophet Musa based on the Divine commandment and he along with his mighty army chased Prophet Musa and the Israelites, he was drowned for not believing the truth Prophet Musa had brought to him.

Part III

In all incidents quoted above, the same message has been quoted above has been repeated: “We have made it easy to learn lessons from the Qur’an: will anyone take heed?” The intention has been only one: Listen to what Allah's prophet tells them and act upon the Divine commandments brought to them. But if the remain heedless, then there is wrath in waiting as was brought to people before them.
43. Are your disbelievers (O Quraish!) better than these [nations of Nuh (Noah), Lout (Lot), Salih (Saleh), and the people of Fir'aun (Pharaoh), etc., who were destroyed)? Or have you an immunity (against Our Torment) in the Divine Scriptures? 44. Or do they say: "We are a great multitude, and we shall be victorious.?" 45. Their multitude will be put to flight, and they will show their backs.
Please concentrate on verses 44-45 above. The boasting tone as that of Pharaoh as been repeated taking the words from the mouths of the formidable Quraish chieftains. This verse was revealed some five years before Hijrah and soon after Hijrah and the first Muslim-Nonbelievers encounter at Badr, the strong pagan army turned its back and fled the battle ground, making the Divine forewarning coming true:

It has been narrated Ibn Jarir, Ibn Abi Hatim that Umar bin Khattab used to say: "When this verse (verse 45) of Surah Al-Qamar was sent down, I wondered what hosts it is that would be routed. But when in the Battle of Badr the pagan Quraish were routed and they were fleeing from the battlefield, I saw the Messenger of Allah in his armor rushing forward and reciting this verse:  Their multitude will be put to flight, and they will show their backs Then only did I realize that this was the defeat that had been foretold." [4]
46. Nay, but the Hour is their appointed time (for their full recompense), and the Hour will be more grievous and more bitter. 47. Verily, the Mujrimun (polytheists, disbelievers, sinners, criminals, etc.) are in error (in this world) and will burn (in the Hell-fire in the Hereafter). 48. The Day they will be dragged in the Fire on their faces (it will be said to them): "Taste you the touch of Hell!" 49.  Verily, We have created all things with Qadar (Divine Preordainment of all things before their creation, as written in the Book of Decrees Al-Lauh Al-Mahfuz). 50. And Our Commandment is but one, as the twinkling of an eye. 51. And indeed, We have destroyed your likes, then is there any that will remember (or receive admonition)? 52. And each and everything they have done is noted in (their) Records (of deeds). 53. And everything, small and big is written (in Al-Lauh Al-Mahfuz already beforehand i.e. before it befalls, or is done by its doer) (See the Qur'an V.57:22). 54. Verily, The Muttaqun (pious), will be in the midst of Gardens and Rivers (Paradise). 55. In a seat of truth (i.e. Paradise), near the Omnipotent King (Allah, the All-Blessed, the Most High, the Owner of Majesty and Honour).
The verses 46 to 55 are mostly directed to the Quraish, the predominant tribe of pagans of Makkah, have been the audience and warning them once again of their fate when the End Day come. That day the sinners, criminals and disbelievers will taste the reward of their crimes by Tasting the touch of Hell. Here they are once again warned that  Allah shall not have to make any lengthy preparations for bringing about Resurrection, nor will it take long to come. For no sooner will a command be issued forth from Allah, it will take place in the twinkling of an eye. So heed to my commandments and those who do so will certainly be rewarded the Paradise, where they would live forever in gardens abound in fruits and rivers of milk and honey. What  else could be a better rewards for being on the path of truth !!

You may now like to listen to Arabic recitation of Sūrat al-Qamar with English subtitles:

You may refer to our post "114 Chapters (Sūrahs) of the Holy Qur'an" for translation, meaning and summary of other chapters (Though not complete but building up from 30th Part backwards for chapters in 30th Part are shorter and easier to understand)

Photo by Jalal HB (also shared at Flickr) | References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |
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Please share this page to your friends and family members through Facebook, WhatsApp or any means on Social Media so that they can also be benefited by it and better understand Islam and the Holy Qur'an - Insha Allah (Allah Willing) you shall be blessed with the best of both worlds.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Surah Ya Seen: Summary of 36th Chapter of the Holy Quran

Sūrah Yā-Sīn, the 36th Chapter / Surah of the Holy Qur'an with its 83 verses revealed in later period of stay of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in Makkah. It is considered as the Heart of the Holy Qur'an. 

The name of the chapter comes from the two letters of the first verse of the chapter: Yā and Sīn. These words without any meaning in the Holy Qur'an are called "Mutashabihat" - words that have been given no meaning and include the abrogated Ayat, parables, oaths, that which should be believed in, but not implemented, these letters none but Allah (alone) knows their meanings, as against the words that are "Muhkamat" - words that are entirely clear and plain, which explain the abrogating rulings, the allowed, prohibited, laws, limits, obligations and rulings that should be believed in and implemented.

Like most of the chapter revealed in Makkah, the the theme of Sūrah Yā-Sīn is to warn the pagans of Makkah of the consequences of not believing in the Prophet hood of Muhammad (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) and of resisting and opposing it with tyranny, ridicule and mockery. The aspect of the warning is dominant and conspicuous although along with repeatedly giving the warnings, arguments also have been given for the correct understanding by the people. Arguments have been given for three things: [1]
  • (1) For Tauhid (Oneness of Allah), from the signs of the universe and from ommon sense; 
  • (2) for the Hereafter, from the signs of the universe, from common sense and from man's own existence itself; and 
  • (3) for the Prophet hood of the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him), from the fact that he was facing all kinds of hardships in the preaching of his message without any selfish motive, and from this that whatever he was inviting the people to was rational and reasonable, accepting which was in the people's own interest.
The surah ends stressing the existence of Resurrection and God's sovereign power.

Now let us read the English translation of Sūrah Yā-Sīn and brief summary of the message (s) contained therein:
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ 

"In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful"
1. Ya-Sin.
2. By the Qur'an, full of wisdom (i.e. full of laws, evidences, and proofs),
3. Truly, you (O Muhammad ) are one of the Messengers,
4. On a Straight Path (i.e. on Allah's religion of Islamic Monotheism).
5. (This is) a Revelation sent down by the All-Mighty, the Most Merciful,
6. In order that you may warn a people whose forefathers were not warned, so they are heedless.
The opening six verses stress onto the nonbelievers of Makkah that Muhammad (peace be upon him) is one of many messengers that Allah had sent before him to warn them for their forefathers did not listen to earlier messengers and remained heedless.  

Reference verse 7 above, a doubt may rise here: How could the forefathers of a nation to whom no warner had been sent at a particular time in the past, be held responsible for their deviation at that time? The answer is: When Allah sends a Prophet, the influence of his message and teaching spreads far and wide, and is handed down by one generation to the other. As long as this influence remains, that period cannot be said to be without the guidance. But when the influence of a Prophet's teaching dies out, or the teaching is tampered with, the appointment of another Prophet becomes inevitable. Before the advent of the Holy Prophet the influence of the teachings of the Prophets Abraham, Ishmael, Shu'aib and Moses and Jesus (peace be upon all of them) could be seen everywhere in Arabia. When the influence was about to die out, and the real teaching was also distorted, Allah chose Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), and made such arrangements that His message can neither be wiped out nor tampered with. [1]
7. Indeed the Word (of punishment) has proved true against most of them, so they will not believe. 8. Verily! We have put on their necks iron collars reaching to chins, so that their heads are forced up. 9. And We have put a barrier before them, and a barrier behind them, and We have covered them up, so that they cannot see. 10. It is the same to them whether you warn them or you warn them not, they will not believe.
11. You can only warn him who follows the Reminder (the Qur'an), and fears the Most Beneficent (Allah) unseen. Bear you to such one the glad tidings of forgiveness, and a generous reward (i.e. Paradise).
In the verse 8, setting of a barrier before them and a barrier behind them" means that the natural result of their stubbornness and pride is that they neither learn any lesson from their past history nor ever consider the consequences of the fixture. Their prejudices have so covered them from every side and their misconceptions have so blinded them that they cannot see even those glaring realities which are visible to every right-thinking and unbiased person.

This does not mean that it is fertile to preach, but it means: "Your preaching reaches every kind of people. When you come across the people of the first kind and you see that they continue to persist in their denial, pride and antagonism, you should leave them alone, but at the same time you should not feel disheartened so as to give up your mission, for you do not know exactly where among the multitudes of the people are those sincere servants of God, who would heed your admonition and fear God and turn to the right path. The real object of your preaching, therefore, should be to search out and collect this second kind of the people. You should ignore the stubborn people and gather this precious element of the society about you.
12. Verily, We give life to the dead, and We record that which they send before (them), and their traces [their footsteps and walking on the earth with their legs to the mosques for the five compulsory congregational prayers, Jihad (holy fighting in Allah's Cause) and all other good and evil they did, and that which they leave behind], and all things We have recorded with numbers (as a record) in a Clear Book.
Verse 12 is indicative of three kinds of the entries that are made in the conduct-book of men:
  • First, whatever a person does, good or bad is entered in the Divine Register. 
  • Second, whatever impressions a man makes on the objects of his environment and on the limbs of his own body itself, become recorded, and all these impressions will at one time become so conspicuous that man's own voice will become audible and the whole history of his ideas and intentions and aims and objects and the pictures of all of his good and bad acts and deeds will appear before him. 
  • Third, whatever influences he has left behind of his good and bad actions on his future generation, on his society and on mankind as a whole, will go on being recorded in his account as far as they reach and as long as they remain active and operative. The full record of the good and bad training given by him to his children, the Bard or evil that he has spread in the society, and its impact on mankind as a whole, will go on being maintained till the time that it goes on producing good or evil results in the world.
In verses 13-32 Allah mentions the fate of the people upon whom two messengers were sent they rejected them.
13. And put forward to them a similitude; the (story of the) dwellers of the town, when there came Messengers to them. 14. When We sent to them two Messengers, they belied them both, so We reinforced them with a third, and they said: "Verily! We have been sent to you as Messengers." 15. They (people of the town) said: "You are only human beings like ourselves, and the Most Beneficent (Allah) has revealed nothing, you are only telling lies." 
Reference Verse 15: In other words, what they wanted to say was: `Since you are human beings, you cannot be the messengers of God. " The same was the view of the disbelievers of Makkah. They also said; "Muhammad (upon whom be Allah's peace) cannot be a messenger because he is a man" In Surah Al Furqan (verse 7) such disbelievers are quoted as saying: "They say: what sort of a Messenger is he that he eats food and moves about in the streets."  
16. The Messengers said: "Our Lord knows that we have been sent as Messengers to you,17. "And our duty is only to convey plainly (the Message)." 18. They (people) said: "For us, we see an evil omen from you, if you cease not, we will surely stone you, and a painful torment will touch you from us." 19. They (Messengers) said: "Your evil omens be with you! (Do you call it "evil omen") because you are admonished? Nay, but you are a people Musrifun (transgressing all bounds by committing all kinds of great sins, and by disobeying Allah). 20. And there came running from the farthest part of the town, a man, saying: "O my people! Obey the Messengers; 21. "Obey those who ask no wages of you (for themselves), and who are rightly guided. 22. "And why should I not worship Him (Allah Alone) Who has created me and to Whom you shall be returned. 23. "Shall I take besides Him aliha (gods), if the Most Beneficent (Allah) intends me any harm, their intercession will be of no use for me whatsoever, nor can they save me? 24. "Then verily, I should be in plain error. 25. Verily! I have believed in your Lord, so listen to me!" 26. It was said (to him when the disbelievers killed him): "Enter Paradise." He said: "Would that my people knew! 27. "That my Lord (Allah) has forgiven me, and made me of the honoured ones!" 28. And We sent not against his people after him a host from heaven, nor do We send (such a thing). 29. It was but one Saihah (shout, etc.) and lo! They (all) were silent (dead-destroyed). 30. Alas for mankind! There never came a Messenger to them but they used to mock at him. 31. Do they not see how many of the generations We have destroyed before them? Verily, they will not return to them. 32. And surely, all, everyone of them will be brought before Us.
Even a third messenger was sent but he too was mocked and pained and was not taken to be a man chosen to put them on the righteous path. They even murdered a a man who tried to convince them that the messengers of Allah only conveyed to them the message from the Divine Creator and needed nothing in return. But the cruel people killed him. It was then Allah’s wrath fell upon the disbelieving community, and the whole town was annihilated. This purpose of this narration was in fact a stern warning to the pagans of Makkah and the polytheists so that they should be careful in rejecting Allah’s Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) refrain from killing him as he was repeatedly threatened lest they also invited the wrath from Allah.
33. And a sign for them is the dead land. We gave it life, and We brought forth from it grains, so that they eat thereof. 34. And We have made therein gardens of date-palms and grapes, and We have caused springs of water to gush forth therein. 35. So that they may eat of the fruit thereof, and their hands made it not. Will they not, then, give thanks? 36. Glory be to Him, Who has created all the pairs of that which the earth produces, as well as of their own (human) kind (male and female), and of that which they know not. 37. And a sign for them is the night, We withdraw therefrom the day, and behold, they are in darkness. 38. And the sun runs on its fixed course for a term (appointed). That is the Decree of the All-Mighty, the All-Knowing. 39. And the moon, We have measured for it mansions (to traverse) till it returns like the old dried curved date stalk. 40. It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor does the night outstrip the day. They all float, each in an orbit. 41. And an Ayah (sign) for them is that We bore their offspring in the laden ship [of Nuh (Noah)]. 42. And We have created for them of the like thereunto, so on them they ride. 43. And if We will, We shall drown them, and there will be no shout (or helper) for them (to hear their cry for help) nor will they be saved. 44. Unless it be a mercy from Us, and as an enjoyment for a while. 45. And when it is said to them: "Beware of that which is before you (worldly torments), and that which is behind you (torments in the Hereafter), in order that you may receive Mercy (i.e. if you believe in Allah's Religion - Islamic Monotheism, and avoid polytheism, and obey Allah with righteous deeds). 46. And never came an Ayah from among the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) of their Lord to them, but they did turn away from it. 47. And when it is said to them: "Spend of that with which Allah has provided you," those who disbelieve say to those who believe: "Shall we feed those whom, if Allah willed, He (Himself) would have fed? You are only in a plain error." 48. And they say: "When will this promise (i.e. Resurrection) be fulfilled, if you are truthful?" 49. They await only but a single Saihah (shout, etc.), which will seize them while they are disputing! 50. Then they will not be able to make bequest, nor they will return to their family.
In verses 33-50 various signs of Allah in Nature are mentioned. And these signs have been taken as witness by Allah: Are there not signs enough around you to bear witness to Allah? These signs include that of earth, gardens and fields full of fruits and green crops, life, light of stars and the planets that follow a set orbit and never deviating from their path. These signs include various modes of transportation that make easier for men to move about and carry their heavy cargo of trade not only on land but also in seas and rivers. A reference to the ship of Prophet Nuh (Noah, peace be upon him) is also made which saved the paired male and female of every living thing to begin the life all over again. These signs are their for men to ponder over these and learn how Allah has made their life easier so that they learn the law of goodness from these and believe in the day which shall come unexpected and men will then be asked why did not believe in Allah when he showed many of His signs as reference. Bur perhaps it would be too late for repentance ford those who mocked the word of Allah brought to them by His messengers and will face the dreadful torment from Allah.
51. And the Trumpet will be blown (i.e. the second blowing) and behold! From the graves they will come out quickly to their Lord. 52. They will say: "Woe to us! Who has raised us up from our place of sleep." (It will be said to them): "This is what the Most Beneficent (Allah) had promised, and the Messengers spoke truth!" 53. It will be but a single Saihah (shout, etc.), so behold! They will all be brought up before Us! 54. This Day (Day of Resurrection), none will be wronged in anything, nor will you be requited anything except that which you used to do. 55. Verily, the dwellers of the Paradise, that Day, will be busy in joyful things.
56. They and their wives will be in pleasant shade, reclining on thrones. 57. They will have therein fruits (of all kinds) and all that they ask for. 58. (It will be said to them): Salamun (peace be on you), a Word from the Lord (Allah), Most Merciful.
59. (It will be said): "And O you Al-Mujrimun (criminals, polytheists, sinners, disbelievers in the Islamic Monotheism, wicked evil ones, etc.)! Get you apart this Day (from the believers). 60. Did I not ordain for you, O Children of Adam, that you should not worship Shaitan (Satan). Verily, he is a plain enemy to you.
61. And that you should worship Me [Alone Islamic Monotheism, and set up not rivals, associate-gods with Me]. That is a Straight Path. 62. And indeed he (Satan) did lead astray a great multitude of you. Did you not, then, understand?
63. This is Hell which you were promised! 64. Burn therein this Day, for that you used to disbelieve. 65. This Day, We shall seal up their mouths, and their hands will speak to Us, and their legs will bear witness to what they used to earn. (It is said that one's left thigh will be the first to bear the witness). [Tafsir At-Tabari, Vol. 22, Page 24] 66. And if it had been Our Will, We would surely have wiped out (blinded) their eyes, so that they would struggle for the Path, how then would they see? 67. And if it had been Our Will, We could have transformed them (into animals or lifeless objects) in their places. Then they should have been unable to go forward (move about) nor they could have turned back. [As it happened with the Jews see Verse 7:166 The Qur'an]. 68. And he whom We grant long life, We reverse him in creation (weakness after strength). Will they not then understand?
69. And We have not taught him (Muhammad ) poetry, nor is it meet for him. This is only a Reminder and a plain Qur'an. 70. That he or it (Muhammad  or the Qur'an) may give warning to him who is living (a healthy minded the believer), and that Word (charge) may be justified against the disbelievers (dead, as they reject the warnings). 71. Do they not see that We have created for them of what Our Hands have created, the cattle, so that they are their owners. 72. And We have subdued them unto them so that some of them they have for riding and some they eat. 73. And they have (other) benefits from them (besides), and they get (milk) to drink, will they not then be grateful? 74. And they have taken besides Allah aliha (gods), hoping that they might be helped (by those so called gods). 75. They cannot help them, but they will be brought forward as a troop against those who worshiped them (at the time of Reckoning). 76. So let not their speech, then, grieve you (O Muhammad ). Verily, We know what they conceal and what they reveal. 77. Does not man see that We have created him from Nutfah (mixed male and female discharge semen drops). Yet behold! He (stands forth) as an open opponent. 78.  And he puts forth for Us a parable, and forgets his own creation. He says: "Who will give life to these bones when they have rotted away and became dust?" 79. Say: (O Muhammad ) "He will give life to them Who created them for the first time! And He is the All-Knower of every creation!" 80. He, Who produces for you fire out of the green tree, when behold! You kindle therewith. 81. Is not He, Who created the heavens and the earth Able to create the like of them? Yes, indeed! He is the All-Knowing Supreme Creator.
The last part of Sūrah Yā-Sīn deals with the Resurrection and Hereafter in verses 51-81. The man is reminded of that day when he will be taken by utter surprise for he thought that day which messengers of Allah have been promising may never come. That day, those who listened to Allah's commandments and His messengers and following the path of truth will be all smiles for they will be blessed and crowned with nearness to Allah. But what a bad day for those who sinned and disbelieved, a day when their own limbs will speak against them and bear witness to what all bad deeds they were forced to commit. And then Allah Almighty will stamp their eternal life with door to hell.
82. Verily, His Command, when He intends a thing, is only that He says to it, "Be!" and it is!
83. So Glorified is He and Exalted above all that they associate with Him, and in Whose Hands is the dominion of all things, and to Him you shall be returned.
The last two Verses are very powerful that exhibit the absoluteness of Allah, the Almighty and Creator of the Universe, whose one command "Be!" and it is (verse 82) made the universe from nothing but smoke by this command and everything that He created will come to an end by the same command. So Glorified is He and Exalted above all that they associate with Him, and in Whose Hands is the dominion of all things, and to Him you shall be returned (verse 83).

In verse 83 for "Dominion" the Arabic word "Malakūt" has been used. Though  another Arabic word "Mulk (sovereignty)" is frequently used in the Qur'an, both this word and "Malakūt"(Dominion) have the same meaning. However, going rather deeply to differentiate between the two words, some interpreters are of the opinion that "Malakūt" refers to Allah’s Lordship over the unseen realm while "Mulk" refers to His Lordship over the visible world. In some Islamic cosmologies, this world is designated by mulk, while malakūt is understood as the level of being above this world, and above that lies the arch-angelic realm, which is designated by the term "Jabarūt." [6]

You may now like to listen to Arabic recitation of Sūrah Yā-Sīn with English subtitles:

You may refer to our post "114 Chapters (Sūrahs) of the Holy Qur'an" for translation, meaning and summary of other chapters (Though not complete but building up from 30th Part backwards for chapters in 30th Part are shorter and easier to understand)

References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 |
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