Wednesday 6 July 2022

Do not knowingly conceal the Truth

There cannot be any justice in this world if people lie, conceal the truth and confound the truth by overlaying it with falsehood. Every day, countless people tell a lie in their homes, offices, and even in courts. These ugly actions portray many innocents as criminals while the criminals get scot-free for they know the art of concealing  the truth  or even "means" to do so.  This is despite the fact that right from childhood, parents educate their children to speak the truth. Yet when they grow up in  a society where deceit and lying thrives unabated, they too fall into the trap and gradually start to conceal the truth in varying degrees.

This act of concealing the truth becomes more harmful when religious scholars, priests, cohens, pandits and imams conceal hidden meanings of their religion and try to deceive others even when they know the truth and feed incorrect information to their followers. This truth concealment breeds hatred for followers of other religions and become breeding grounds for violence against each other,

This very unfortunate that Islam is the most targeted Divine religion due to this heinous crime and has resulted into Islamophobia that has spread almost throughout the world and plagues the minds. The publishing of caricatures of revered prophet of Islam Muhammad ﷺ, burning of Qur'an publicly and snatching head-scarves from the heads of Muslim women, firing and barging into on masjids or even demolishing the places of worship or community centres has but become the daily business around the world. In India, Muslims are bound and forcibly made to drink urine of cow and chant prop Hindu slogans and tortured to denounce Islam.

The same was the situation when Islam was introduced in Makkah by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and cohens tried to conceal the truth, though they knew what Islam was conveying the same message that their unadulterated scriptures said. And today even after more than 1400 years, we are still subjected to same hate and lying tactics.

We share today the 42nd verse of Surah 2. Al Baqarah (The Cow), that points towards concealment of truth:

وَلَا تَلۡبِسُوا الۡحَـقَّ بِالۡبَاطِلِ وَتَكۡتُمُوا الۡحَـقَّ وَاَنۡتُمۡ تَعۡلَمُوۡنَ‏ 
(2:42) Do not confound Truth by overlaying it with falsehood, nor knowingly conceal the Truth.
In order to understand this verse, it should be kept in mind that the Arabs were generally illiterate and uneducated people. As against them, education was common among the Jews, who had among them great scholars renowned even beyond Arabia. That is why the Arabs were overawed by the scholarship of the Jews, more so because their scholars and rabbis made a great show of their learning and piety and reinforced it with the practice of charms and amulets. The people of Madinah in particular were overawed by the learning of the Jews, for they were surrounded by big Jewish tribes and came in contact with them day and night. As a result, they were immensely influenced by them just as illiterate people usually are influenced by the neighbours who are more educated, more civilized and more religious in character.

Such were the conditions when the Holy Prophet upon whom be peace) presented himself as a Prophet and began to invite the people to Islam; naturally the illiterate Arabs turned to the Jews for guidance in this matter, and said: "You are the followers of a Prophet and possess a Book, so tell us what you think of this man and his teachings, who claims to be a Prophet." This question was repeatedly asked of the Jews by the people of Makkah, and when the Holy Prophet came to Madinah, here also many people visited the Jewish scholars again and again to ask them the same question. But their scholars never gave them the right answer. For they could not say that the doctrine of Tauhid that Muhammad (upon whom be Allah's peace and blessings) was preaching was wrong, nor that the knowledge which he imparted about the Prophets, scriptures, angels, and the Hereafter was wrong, nor that there was something wrong about the moral principles that he taught. They were neither ready to admit in plain words the righteousness of the teachings of the Holy Prophet; nor had they the courage to refute it openly; nor were they willing to profess the Truth candidly. 

Instead, they devised a subtle strategy to oppose it: they created one suspicion or the other about the Holy Prophet, his followers and his mission; they would concoct allegations against him and his followers and make false propaganda against them or raise frivolous objections so as to involve them in useless discussions. That is why they have been warned not to conceal the truth by covering it with falsehood, nor suppress it by spreading suspicions and by raising silly objections, nor mix it up with falsehood.

Tafsir Ibn-Kathir: The Prohibition of hiding the Truth and distorting It with Falsehood
Allah forbade the Jews from intentionally distorting the truth with falsehood and from hiding the truth and spreading falsehood, (And mix not truth with falsehood, nor conceal the truth while you know (the truth)). So Allah forbade them from two things; He ordered them to make the truth known, as well as explaining it. 

(while you know (the truth).) that the religion of Allah is Islam, and that Judaism and Christianity are innovations that did not come from Allah.''
(nor conceal the truth while you know (the truth).) means, "Do not hide the knowledge that you have of My Messenger and what he was sent with. His description, which you know about, can be found written in the Books that you have.''

It is possible that it means, "..although you know the tremendous harm that this evil will cause people, misguiding them and leading them to the Fire, because they will follow the falsehood that you mixed with the truth in your claims.''

Muhammad Asad Explanation:
By "overlaying the truth with falsehood" is meant the corrupting of the Biblical text, of which the Qur'an frequently accuses the Jews (and which has since been established by objective textual criticism), while the "suppression of the truth" refers to their disregard or deliberately false interpretation of the words of Moses in the Biblical passage, "The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken" (Deuteronomy xviii, 15), and the words attributed to God Himself, "I will raise them up a prophet from among thy brethren, like unto thee, and will put My words in his mouth" (Deuteronomy xviii, 18). The "brethren" of the children of Israel are obviously the Arabs, and particularly the musta'ribah ("Arabianized") group among them, which traces its descent to Ishmael and Abraham: and since it is to this group that the Arabian Prophet's own tribe, the Quraysh, belonged, the above Biblical passages must be taken as referring to his advent.

Explanation Qur'an Wiki:
The sūrah goes on to censure the Israelites for deliberately confusing truth with falsehood in order to create confusion, doubt and discord among the Muslims. “Do not overlay the truth with falsehood, nor knowingly suppress the truth.”

The Qur’ān abounds with reports of how the Jews of Madinah would seize every opportunity to antagonise its Muslims, create distractions and spread false ideas and malicious rumours among them. They had a notorious reputation, as we shall see, for causing division and making mischief within the Muslim community.

When someone hides the truth and knowledge. Abdullah ibn Mubarak said, إذا كتم العالم علمه ابتلي : إما بموت القلب أو ينسى أو يتبع السلطان "When a scholar hides his knowledge, he will be tested - either with the death of his heart, or he will forget [his knowledge] or he will follow the Rulers [i.e. he will become amongst the scholars of the government."  الْحَقَّ بِالْبَاطِلِ– The truth is there being clothed over with falsehood.
The application of this verse stands true even today when priests, pandits and cohens are busy labelling Islam with all sorts of derogatory slurs and trying their utmost to deter their people from embracing Islam. Yet, the miracle of Islam is more powerful than their machinations and is expanding at a much faster rate than all other religions. Many fear that by 2050 Islam may over take Christianity. and it will -In Sha Allah.
This verse is also applicable to all those Muslims who conceal the truth and lie for their worldly and personal gains. Bribes are business of the day and many Muslims indulge in asking bribes for even official works. Lawyers blatantly lie to cover up the truth to save their clients, despite knowing that their clients are criminals and they are helping them and thus framing the innocents. Muslims must know that one day they will be asked and punished for the lies they told to conceal the truth and on that day no one will save them from wrath of Allah. This verse is a wake up call, if we have the vision to comprehend it.

Please listen to explanation of the ayat by eminent Muslim scholar Nouman Ali Khan:

May Allāh (سبحانه و تعالى‎) help us understand Qur'ān and follow the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, which is embodiment of commandments of Allah contained in the Qur'ān. May Allah help us to be like the ones He loves and let our lives be lived helping others and not making others life miserable or unlivable. May all our wrong doings, whether intentional or unintentional, be forgiven before the angel of death knocks on our door. 

Note: When we mention God in our posts, we mean One True God, we call Allah in Islam, with no associates. Allah is the Sole Creator of all things, and that Allah is all-powerful and all-knowing. Allah has no offspring, no race, no gender, no body, and is unaffected by the characteristics of human life.

Reading the Qur'ān should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully. It will also help the Muslims to have grasp over social issues and their answers discussed in the Qur'an and other matter related to inter faith so  that they are able to discuss issues with Non Muslims with authority based on refences from Qur'an.

May Allah forgive me if my posts ever imply a piety far greater than I possess. I am most in need of guidance.

For more Selected Verses, please refer to our reference page: Selected Verses from the Qur'anYou may also refer to our Reference Pages  and Understanding Al Qur'an for knowing more about Islam and Qur'ān.
Photo | Tafsir References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

An effort has been made to gather explanation / exegesis of the surahs of the Qur'ān from authentic sources and then present a least possible condensed explanation of the surah. In that the exegesis of the chapters of the Quran is mainly based on the "Tafhim al-Qur'an - The Meaning of the Qur'an" by one of the most enlightened scholars of the Muslim World Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi.  
In order to augment and add more explanation as already provided, additional input has been interjected from following sources: 
  • Towards Understanding the Quran
  • Tafsir Ibn Khatir
  • Muhammad Asad Translation
  • Javed Ahmad Ghamidi / Al Mawrid
  • Al-Quran, Yusuf Ali Translation
  • Verse by Verse Qur'an Study Circle
In addition the references of other sources which have been explored have also been given above. Those desirous of detailed explanations and tafsir (exegesis), may refer to these sites.

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