Showing posts with label Chapter 88. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Chapter 88. Show all posts

Friday 23 October 2020

Surah Al-Ghāshiyah - The Overwhelming Event: Exegesis 88th Chapter of Quran

Sūrah Al-Ghāshiyah " الغاشية‎ " - The Overwhelming Event, is the eighty eighth sürah with 26 āyāt, part of the 30th Juzʼ of the Holy Qur'ān.

The Surah takes its name from the word al-ghāshiyah in the first verse. The whole subject matter of the Surah indicates that this too is one of the earliest Surahs to be revealed; but this was the period when the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) had started preaching his message publicly, and the people of Makkah were hearing it and ignoring it carelessly and thoughtlessly. This surah perhaps close in date with S. liii. An Najam.

This surah refers to three broad-ranging topics. The first, God describes the difference between good and evil paths that an individual can take and the consequence of each path. He then clarifies their destiny and describes what hell would be like for the non-believers. The second theme mentions the creations God has made and referring to the sky, the earth, and the mountains. Lastly, In verses 21–22, God gives a direct message to Prophet Muhammad and tells him, "So remind, [O Muhammad]; you are only a reminder. You are not over them a controller."

This sürah was held in special esteem in hadith. According to hadith, the prophet Muhammad ﷺ used to recite this sürah in Zuhr prayer and in congregational prayers of Jumu'ah and in Eid prayers. And the prophet Muhammad used to recite this surah after surah Al-Jumua (Sürah 62) or after Al-Ala (Sürah 87).

We have already presented the overview / summary of the sürah. Let us now read the verse by verse translation and exegesis / tafseer in English. You may also listen to tafsir / exegesis of the surah by eminent Muslim scholar Nouman Ali Khan at the end of the post:

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ 
"In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful"

هَلۡ اَتٰٮكَ حَدِيۡثُ الۡغَاشِيَةِؕ‏ 
( 1 )   Has there reached you the report of the Overwhelming [event]?
The overwhelming: the Resurrection which will overshadow the whole world. One should know that here the Hereafter as a whole is being depicted, which comprehends all the stages from the upsetting of the present system to the resurrection of all human beings and the dispensation of rewards and punishments from the divine court.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
Gashiya: the thing or event that overshadows or overwhelms, that covers over or makes people lose their senses. In xii. 107, it is described as the "covering veil of the Wrath of Allah": where see n. 1790. The Day of Judgment is indicated, as the Event of overweening importance in which all our petty differences of this imperfect world are covered over and overwhelmed in a new world of perfect justice and truth.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation:
Though the Prophet (sws) is addressed here, it is evident from the subsequent verses that these verses are actually directed at the arrogant leadership of the Quraysh who had lost all fear of the Hereafter. The address begins with a question. Such questions are not meant to elicit an answer; they are meant to portray the horrific or grand nature of something.

وُجُوۡهٌ يَّوۡمَـئِذٍ خَاشِعَةٌ ۙ‏ 
( 2 )   [Some] faces, that Day, will be humbled,
Some faces: some persons, for the face is the most conspicuous part of the human body by which man’s personality is judged and which reflects the good or bad states through which man passes.

عَامِلَةٌ نَّاصِبَةٌ ۙ‏ 
( 3 )   Working [hard] and exhausted.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
Meaning, they did many deeds and became weary in their performance, yet they will be cast into a blazing Fire on the Day of Judgement. Al-Hafiz Abu Bakr Al-Burqani narrated from Abu `Imran Al-Jawni that he said, " `Umar bin Al-Khattab passed by the monastery of a monk and he said: `O monk!' Then the monk came out, and `Umar looked at him and began to weep. Then it was said to him: `O Commander of the faithful! Why are you weeping' He replied: `I remembered the statement of Allah, the Mighty and Majestic, in His Book, (Laboring, weary. They will enter into Fire, Hamiyah.) So that is what has made me cry. ''' 

Al-Bukhari recorded that Ibn `Abbas said, (Laboring, weary.) "The Christians.'' It is narrated that `Ikrimah and As-Suddi both said, "Laboring in the worldly life with disobedience, and weariness in the Fire from torment and perdition.'' 

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
On the faces of the wicked will appear the hard labour and consequent fatigue of the task they will have in battling against the fierce Fire which their own Deeds will have kindled.

تَصۡلٰى نَارًا حَامِيَةً ۙ‏ 
( 4 )   They will [enter to] burn in an intensely hot Fire.

تُسْقَىٰ مِنْ عَيْنٍ آنِيَةٍ 
( 5 )   They will be given drink from a boiling spring.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
(They will be given to drink from a boiling (Aniyah) spring.) meaning, its heat has reached its maximum limit and boiling point. This was said by Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, Al-Hasan and As-Suddi. 

 لَّيْسَ لَهُمْ طَعَامٌ إِلَّا مِن ضَرِيعٍ 
( 6 )   For them there will be no food except from a poisonous, thorny plant
At some places in the Quran, it has been stated that the dwellers of Hell will be given zaqqum to eat; at another place it has been said that they will have no other food but ghislin (washing from wounds), and here that their only food will be thorny dry grass. There is, in fact, no contradiction between these statements. This may as well mean that Hell will have many different compartments in which different categories of the criminals will be lodged according to their crimes, and subjected to different punishments. This may also mean that if they try to avoid zaqqum they will be given ghislin, and if they try to avoid even that, they will only get thorny grass. In short, they would get nothing to suit their taste.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
`Ali bin Abi Talhah reported from Ibn `Abbas that he said, "A tree from the Hellfire.'' Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, `Ikrimah, Abu Al-Jawza' and Qatadah, all said, "It is Ash-Shibriq (a type of plant).'' Qatadah said, "The Quraysh called it Ash-Shabraq in the spring and Ad-Dari` in the summer.'' `Ikrimah said, "It is a thorny tree which reaches down to the ground.'' Al-Bukhari related that Mujahid said, "Ad-Dari` is a plant that is called Ash-Shibriq. The people of the Hijaz call it Ad-Dari` when it dries, and it is poisonous. Sa`id narrated from Qatadah that he said, "This is of the worst, most disgusting and loathsome of foods.''

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
The root-meaning implies again the idea of humiliation. It is a plant, bitter and thorny, loathsome in smell and appearance, which will neither give fattening nourishment to the body nor in any way satisfy the burning pangs of hunger,-a fit plant for Hell, like Zaqqum (lvi. 52; or xvii. 60).

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation:
The actual words are: لَیۡسَ لَہُمۡ طَعَامٌ اِلَّا مِنۡ ضَرِیۡعٍ. The exception in it is severed (munqata‘). In other words, there will be nothing edible at all for them. All that will be available to them will be thorny bushes and things similar to them and they will be forced to eat them in their helplessness.

 لَّا يُسْمِنُ وَلَا يُغْنِي مِن جُوعٍ 
( 7 )   Which neither nourishes nor avails against hunger.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
This means that the intent in eating it will not be achieved, and nothing harmful will be repelled by it.

Muhammad Asad Explanation:
According to Al-Qiffal (as quoted by Razi), this kind of hellish drink and food is a metonym for utter hopelessness and abasement. As regards the noun dari' - which is said to be a bitter, thorny plant in its dried state (Jawhari) - it is to be borne in mind that it is derived from the verb dara'a or dari'a, which signifies "he [or "it"] became abject" or "abased", (ibid.): hence my rendering of this (obviously metaphorical) expression as "the bitterness of dry thorns". A similarly metaphorical meaning attaches to the expression "a boiling spring" in verse {5}, which recalls the term hamim so often mentioned in the Qur'an (see note [62] on the last sentence of 6:70).

وُجُوهٌ يَوْمَئِذٍ نَّاعِمَةٌ 
( 8 )   [Other] faces, that Day, will show pleasure.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
On the Day of Judgement, pleasure will be noticeable in them (those faces). This will only occur due to their striving. 

 لِّسَعْيِهَا رَاضِيَةٌ 
( 9 )   With their effort [they are] satisfied
That is: they will be overjoyed to see the best results in the Hereafter of their endeavors and deeds in the world; they will be satisfied to see that they had, in fact, made a profitable bargain in that they had adopted a life of faith, virtue and piety, by sacrificing the desires of the flesh, undergone hardships in carrying out their obligations, endured afflictions in obeying the divine commands, incurred losses and suffered deprivation of benefits and pleasures while trying to avoid sins and acts of disobedience.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
Notice the parallelism in contrast, between the fate of the Wicked and that of the Righteous. In the one case there was humiliation in their faces; in the other, there is joy; where there was labour and weariness in warding off the Fire, there is instead a healthy Striving, which is itself pleasurable, -a Striving which is a pleasant consequence of the spiritual Endeavour in the earthly life, which may have brought trouble or persecution from without, but which brought inward peace and satisfaction.

 فِي جَنَّةٍ عَالِيَةٍ 
( 10 )   In an elevated garden,

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
The most important point is their inward state of joy and satisfaction, mentioned in verses 8-9. Now are mentioned the outer things of bliss, the chief of which is the Garden. The Garden is in contrast to the Fire. Its chief beauty will be that they will hear there nothing unbecoming, or foolish, or vain. It will be a Garden on high, in all senses,-fit for the best, highest, and noblest.

 لَّا تَسْمَعُ فِيهَا لَاغِيَةً 
( 11 )   Wherein they will hear no unsuitable speech.
This thing has been mentioned at several places in the Quran as a major blessing of Paradise. (For explanation, see:
  • Verse 62 Surah  19. Maryam: "They shall not hear in it anything vain; they shall hear only what is good; and they shall have their provision in it, morning and evening."
  • Verse 23 of Surah 52. At-Toor: "They shall pass on to one another a cup that will incite neither levity nor sin."
  • Verse 25 of Surah Al-Waqiah: "There they shall hear no idle talk nor any sinful speech."
  • Verse 35 of Surah An-Naba: "Therein they shall hear no idle talk, nor any falsehood;"
 فِيهَا عَيْنٌ جَارِيَةٌ 
( 12 )   Within it is a flowing spring.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
(Therein will be a running spring.) meaning, flowing freely. This is mentioned with the intent of emphasizing affirmation. It is not intended to mean that there is only one spring. So here it refers to springs collectively. Thus, the meaning is that in it (Paradise) are flowing springs. 

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Messenger of Allah said, (The rivers of Paradise spring forth from beneath hills -- or mountains -- of musk.)

Muhammad Asad Explanation:
Lit., "a spring" - but, as Zamakhshari and Ibn Kathir point out, the singular form has here a generic import, implying "a multitude of springs". This metaphor of the life-giving element is analogous to that of the "running waters" (anhar) frequently mentioned in Qur'anic descriptions of paradise.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
Instead of the boiling hot spring (verse 5) there will be a bubbling spring of sparkling water. Instead of the groveling and grumbling in the place of Wrath, there Will be couches, with all the accompaniments of a brilliant assembly.

 فِيهَا سُرُرٌ مَّرْفُوعَةٌ 
( 13 )   Within it are couches raised high

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
(Therein will be thrones raised high.) meaning, lofty, delightful, numerous couches, with elevated ceilings. Upon which will be seated wide-eyed, beautiful maidens. They have mentioned that whenever the friend of Allah wishes to sit on these lofty thrones, they (the thrones) will lower themselves for him.

 وَأَكْوَابٌ مَّوْضُوعَةٌ 
( 14 )   And cups put in place

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
(And cups set at hand.) meaning, drinking containers that are prepared and presented for whoever among their masters (i.e., the people of Paradise) wants them.

 وَنَمَارِقُ مَصْفُوفَةٌ 
( 15 )   And cushions lined up

 وَزَرَابِيُّ مَبْثُوثَةٌ 
( 16 )   And carpets spread around.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
(And Zarabi, spread out (Mabthuthah).) Ibn `Abbas said, "Az-Zarabi are carpets.'' This was also said by Ad-Dahhak and others. Here the word Mabthuthah means placed here and there for whoever would like to sit upon them.

أَفَلَا يَنظُرُونَ إِلَى الْإِبِلِ كَيْفَ خُلِقَتْ 
( 17 )   Then do they not look at the camels - how they are created?

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
The Exhortation to look at the Creation of the Camel, the Heaven, the Mountains and the Earth: Allah commands His servants to look at His creations that prove His power and greatness. He says, (Do they not look at the camels, how they are created) Indeed it is an amazing creation, and the way it has been fashioned is strange. For it is extremely powerful and strong, yet gentle, carrying heavy loads. It allows itself to be guided by a weak rider. It is eaten, benefit is derived from its hair, and its milk is drunk. They are reminded of this because the most common domestic animal of the Arabs was the camel. Shurayh Al-Qadi used to say, "Come out with us so that we may look at the camels and how they were created, and at the sky and how it has been raised.'' Meaning, how Allah raised it in such magnificence above the ground. 

This is as Allah says,(Have they not looked at the heaven above them, how we have made it and adorned it and there are no rifts on it) (50:6) 

Muhammad Asad Explanation:
Implying that a denial of resurrection and life in the hereafter renders the concept of a conscious Creator utterly meaningless; hence my interpretation of the words "who deny resurrection" in the first part of this verse. - As regards the noun ibil, it denotes, as a rule, "camels": a generic plural which has no singular form. But one must remember that it also signifies "clouds bearing rain-water" (Lisan al-'Arab, Qamus, Taj al-'Arus) - a meaning which is preferable in the present context. If the term were used in the sense of "camels", the reference to it in the above verse would have been primarily - if not exclusively - addressed to the Arabian contemporaries of the Prophet, to whom the camel was always an object of admiration on account of its outstanding endurance, the many uses to which it could be put (riding, load-bearing, and as a source of milk, flesh and fine wool) and its indispensability to people living amid deserts. But precisely because a reference to "camels" would restrict its significance to people of a particular environment and a particular time (without even the benefit of a historical allusion to past events), it must be ruled out here, for the Qur'anic appeals to observe the wonders of the God-created universe are invariably directed at people of all times and all environments. Hence, there is every reason to assume that the term ibil relates here not to camels but to "clouds pregnant with water": the more so as such an allusion to the miraculous, cyclic process of the evaporation of water, the skyward ascension of vapour, its condensation and, finally, its precipitation over the earth is definitely more in tune with the subsequent mention (in verses {18-20}) of sky, mountains and earth, than would be a reference to "camels", however admirable and noteworthy these animals may be.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
In case men neglect the Hereafter as of no account, they are asked to contemplate four things, which they can see in every-day life, and which are full of meaning, high design, and the goodness of Allah to man. The first mentioned is the domesticated animal, which for Arab countries is par excellence the Camel. What a wonderful structure has this Ship of the Desert? He can store water in his stomach for days. He can live on dry and thorny desert shrubs. His limbs are adapted to his life. He can carry men and goods. His flesh can be eaten. Camel's hair can be used in weaving. And withal, he is so gentle! Who can sing his praises enough?

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation:
Here the events of the Day of Judgement mentioned earlier are substantiated by certain signs found in the world around man. The sequence adopted takes into consideration the unique aspect that first the attention of the addressees is directed to the most prominent thing found in their immediate environment: the camel. After that observation is directed to the heavens and then once the eyes come back to the earth, the mountains which they observe in between. After the mountains, only the earth could have been a source of attention for the addressees in the Arabian environment. Thus it is mentioned at the end. In the signs, two are very prominent with regard to God’s providence and two are very prominent with regard to God’s power and wisdom. The first two are the camel and the earth and the last two are the heavens and the mountains. Students of the Qur’an know that the whole foundation of its philosophy and wisdom stands on the attributes of God. 

Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes:
Their attention is directed foremost to the camel. Why don’t they reflect on something which is their everyday companion; it remains with them wherever they go and serves all their needs. It is completely obedient to them and even risks its life for them. It is the Almighty who has created it with all these wondrous qualities. The camel is an example of docility to man and in spite of being so huge and massive, people can lead it anywhere by a nose-string. It walks behind them in total compliance. It is their companion at home and during travels. It carries all their burdens and is like a ship for them in desert journeys. For weeks, it fights thirst and hunger and fills its stomach with thorny bushes and never disobeys its master however tough the errand assigned. Its flesh, hide and milk are of use to his master and even his faeces have their benefit. What needs to be reflected upon is: did the camel, with such multifarious benefits, come into existence of its own accord and was it mere coincidence that man tamed it into submission? Or was it that the Almighty created it through His profound power and wisdom and put it in the service of man? Obviously, sense and reason vouch for the second of these possibilities. If this second possibility is the only acceptable one, then is it not the responsibility of man to lead his life while remaining grateful to the Almighty. For it is the Almighty Who blessed him with these comforts of life even though it was not his right. If he does not show gratitude, he should get ready to face the Almighty and be held accountable before him and face punishment for denying all His favours. Once an animal as tall as the camel was mentioned, attention was immediately directed to the heavens: Why don’t people reflect on how its roof was raised high? The implication is that such a limitless expanse was raised high without any pillars. Even stranger is the fact that the time which has elapsed on it is also unknown but the most competent of engineers with the most powerful of telescopes is unable to point to the minutest flaw in it. Even more weird is the fact that no one knows how far off it is from the earth; however, the sun, the moon, the planets and the stars suspended in it provide light and heat to the earth and are a means of sustaining life on it and are a source of its embellishment too.

Man should reflect that if such is the extent of the power and wisdom of the Creator that He can make the heavens, will it be difficult for Him to re-create man once he is reduced to dust? Consequently, at a number of places, the Qur’an has asked man whether re-creating him is more difficult or creating the heavens. After the eyes are urged to observe the sky and its majesty, they are exhorted to look at the earth and attention is directed at the most prominent sign of God’s power and wisdom that lies between the sky and the earth: the mountains. They maintain the balance of the earth lest it should tilt on one side together with everyone. They also control the winds and the clouds so that they cause rain at certain places in accordance with the will and wisdom of God. Even though they are made of rocks, providence has made provisions of streams and rivulets of water to flow from them for the benefit of His creation. They contain countless treasures of priceless worth hidden within them. Man is constantly in the process of discovering these treasures and using them for the development of the society. Among them are mountains which are insurmountable; however, the Almighty has taken out passes and passages through them so that they do not cause hindrance in communication between people of various nations. Man should reflect whether all this is not a testimony to the great power and wisdom of the Creator and to His all-embracing providence. He should further deliberate that will the Creator Who has such attributes leave man unaccountable for all his deeds; will He not bring a Day on which He holds everyone accountable for his deeds and reward and punish people accordingly? Is not this reward and punishment an obvious requirement of His providence and wisdom? Can anyone claim that this is beyond His power?… The eyes are now directed from the mountains to the earth. Man should see how it contains various things in each and every place to nurture and nourish him. They are able to make houses in its outspread lands. Its fields contain their crops and orchards. Its springs, wells and rivulets supply water to these crops and orchards. Its forests and valleys contain limitless resources to feed their animals and livestock. Man should reflect on all this and think that the Being Who has placed them in a house that He has built for them and which very efficiently caters for all their needs, will He become indifferent to the way these inhabitants lead their lives? Will He not differentiate between those among them who lead their lives according to His will and who show pride and vanity by considering all these favours as an inheritance received from their forefathers. Intellect, obviously, endorses the fact that He should deal differently with the two categories. If He does not do so, then this would, God forbid, mean that either He is insensitive and unintelligent and devoid of the awareness of good and evil or is absolutely helpless and feeble. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 9, 333)

 وَإِلَى السَّمَاءِ كَيْفَ رُفِعَتْ 
( 18 )   And at the sky - how it is raised?

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
The second thing they should consider is the noble blue vault high above them,-with the sun and moon, the stars and planets, and other heavenly bodies. This scene is full of beauty and magnificence, design and order, plainness and mystery. And yet we receive our light and warmth from the sun, and what would our physical lives be without these influences that come from such enormous distance.

 وَإِلَى الْجِبَالِ كَيْفَ نُصِبَتْ 
( 19 )   And at the mountains - how they are erected?

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
How they have been erected. For indeed they are firmly affixed so that the earth does not sway with its dwellers. And He made them with the benefits and minerals they contain.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
From every-day utility and affection in the Camel, to the utility in grandeur in the heavens above us, we had two instances touching our individual as well as our social lives. In the third instance, in the Mountains we come to the utility to human kind generally in the services the Mountains perform in storing water, in moderating climate, and in various other ways which it is the business of Physical Geography to investigate and describe.

 وَإِلَى الْأَرْضِ كَيْفَ سُطِحَتْ
( 20 )   And at the earth - how it is spread out?
That is, if they deny the possibility of the Hereafter, have they never looked around themselves and considered how the camels were created, how the heaven was raised high, how the mountains were firmly set and how the earth was spread out? When all these things could be created, and exist before them in their finished form, why can the Resurrection not take place? Why cannot a new world come about, and why cannot Hell and Heaven be possible? Only a foolish and thoughtless person would think that the coming into existence of only those things which he has found existing, on opening his eyes in the world, is possible, because they already exist. 

As for the things, which he has not yet observed and experienced, he should thoughtlessly pass the judgment that their coming into being is impossible. If he has any common sense, he should think as to how the things, which already exist, came into being? How did the camel possessing precisely the same characteristics as needed for the beast required by the desert dwellers of Arabia come into being? How did the sky whose atmosphere is filled with air to breathe in, whose clouds bring rain, whose sun provides light and warmth in the day, whose moon and stars shine at night, come into being? How did the earth spread out on which man lives and passes his life, whose products fulfill all his needs and requirements on whose springs and wells his life depends? How did the mountains rise up from the surface of the earth, which stand fixed with earth and stones of different colors and a variety of minerals in them? Has all this happened without the artistic skill of an All-Powerful, All- Wise Designer. No thinking and intelligent mind can answer this question in the negative. Unless it is stubborn and obstinate, it will have to acknowledge that each one of these things was impossible, had not an Omnipotent, Wise Being made it possible. And when an All-Powerful, Wise Being created these things, there is no reason why the Hereafter should be regarded as remote from reason and impossible.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
Meaning, how it has been spread out, extended and made smooth. Thus, He directs the Bedouin to consider what he himself witnesses. His camel that he rides upon, the sky that is above his head, the mountain that faces him, and the earth that is under him, all of this is proof of the power of the Creator and Maker of these things. These things should lead him to see that He is the Lord, the Most Great, the Creator, the Owner, and the Controller of everything. Therefore, He is the God other than Whom none deserves to be worshipped.

The Story of Dimam bin Tha`labah: These are the things Dimam swore by after questioning the Messenger of Allah . This can be seen in what Imam Ahmad recorded from Thabit, who reported that Anas said, "We were prohibited from asking the Messenger of Allah anything. Thus, it used to amaze us when an intelligent man from the people of the desert (bedouin Arabs) would come and ask him about something while we were listening. 

So a man from the people of the desert came and said, `O Muhammad! Verily, your messenger has come to us and he claims that you claim that Allah sent you.' He (the Prophet) said, (He told the truth.) The man said, Who created the heaven؟ He (the Prophet ) replied, ,(Allah.) The man said, Who created the earth؟ He (the Prophet ) replied, (Allah). The man said, `Who erected these mountains and placed in them whatever is in them' He (the Prophet ) replied, ا,(Allah). Then the man said, `By the One Who created the heaven, the earth, and erected these mountains, did Allah send you' He (the Prophet ) said, "Yes."

The man then said, `Your messenger claims that we are obligated to pray five prayers during our day and night.' He (the Prophet ) said, (He told the truth.) The man then said, `By He Who has sent you, did Allah command you with this' He (the Prophet ) replied, (Yes.) The man then said, `Your messenger also claims that we are obligated to give charity from our wealth.' He (the Prophet ) said, (He told the truth.) 

Then the man said, `By He Who has sent you, did Allah command you with this' He (the Prophet ) replied, (Yes.) The man then said, `Your messenger claims that we are obligated to perform pilgrimage (Hajj) to the House (the Ka`bah), for whoever is able to find a way there.' He (the Prophet ) said,
(He told the truth.) 

Then the man turned away to leave while saying, `By He Who has sent you with the truth, I will not add anything to these things and I will not decrease anything from them.' The Prophet then said, (If he has spoken truthfully, he will certainly enter Paradise.) This Hadith was recorded by Al-Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi, An-Nasa'i and Ibn Majah.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
The fourth and last instance given is that of the Earth as a whole, the habitation of mankind in our present phase of life. The Earth is a globe, and yet how marvelously it seems to be spread out before us in plains, valleys, hills, deserts, seas, etc.! Can man, seeing these things, fail to see a Plan and Purpose in his life, or fail to tum to the great Creator before Whom he will have to give an account after this life is done?

فَذَكِّرْ إِنَّمَا أَنتَ مُذَكِّرٌ 
( 21 )   So remind, [O Muhammad]; you are only a reminder.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
The Prophet of Allah is sent to teach and direct people on the way. He is not sent to force their will, or to punish them, except in so far as he may receive authority to do so. Punishment belongs to Allah alone. And Punishment is certain in the Hereafter, when true values will be restored.

 لَّسْتَ عَلَيْهِم بِمُصَيْطِرٍ 
( 22 )   You are not over them a controller.
That is, if a person does not listen to reason, he may not. You have not been appointed to force the will of the deniers: your only task is to distinguish the right from the wrong for the people and warn them of the consequences of following the wrong way; so this is the task you should continue to perform.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid and others said, "You are not a dictator over them.'' This means that you cannot create faith in their hearts. Ibn Zayd said, "You are not the one who can force them to have faith.'' 

Imam Ahmad recorded from Jabir that the Messenger of Allah said, (I have been commanded to fight the people until they say La ilaha illallah (none has the right to be worshipped except Allah). So if they say that, they have safeguarded their blood and wealth from me - except for what is rightfully due from it - and their reckoning is with Allah, the Mighty and Majestic.)'' 

Then he recited, So remind them - you are only one who reminds. You are not a dictator over them -) This is how Muslim recorded this Hadith in his Book of Faith, and At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa'i also recorded it in their Sunans in the Books of Tafsir. This Hadith can be found in both of the Two Sahihs.

 إِلَّا مَن تَوَلَّىٰ وَكَفَرَ 
( 23 )   However, he who turns away and disbelieves -

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
(Save the one who turns away and disbelieves.) meaning, he turns away from acting upon its pillars, and he disbelieves in the truth with his heart and his tongue. This is similar to Allah's statement, (So he neither believed nor prayed! But on the contrary, he belied and turn away!) (75:31-32) 

Thus, Allah says,

 فَيُعَذِّبُهُ اللَّـهُ الْعَذَابَ الْأَكْبَرَ 
( 24 )   Then Allah will punish him with the greatest punishment.

 إِنَّ إِلَيْنَا إِيَابَهُمْ 
( 25 )   Indeed, to Us is their return.

 ثُمَّ إِنَّ عَلَيْنَا حِسَابَهُم 
( 26 )   Then indeed, upon Us is their account.

Ibn Kathir Explanation:
(Then verily, for Us will be their reckoning.) meaning, `We will reckon their deeds for them and requite them for those deeds.' If they did good, they will receive good, and if they did evil, they will receive evil. 

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation:
This is not merely a threat from God; it is incumbent upon Him to call him to account. In the words of Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi, if the Almighty does not do so, then this will mean that this world is merely a playground of children and a meaningless and purposeless creation whereas the fact of the matter is that its Creator does nothing which is bereft of wisdom.

You may now like to listen to exegesis of Sūrah Al-Ghāshiyah by eminent Muslim scholar, exegete and linguist Nouman Ali Khan:

You may refer to our Reference Page "114 Chapters (Sūrahs) of the Holy Qur'an" for translation, explanation and exegesis of other chapters of the Qur'an.

You may also refer to our Reference Pages for knowing more about Islam and Quran.
Photo | References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 67 | 8 | 910
Reading the Holy Quran 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.

An effort has been made to gather explanation / exegesis of the surahs of the Holy Qur'an from authentic sources and then present a least possible condensed explanation of the surah. In that:
  • The plain translation has been taken from the Holy Quran officially published by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. [1]
  • The exegesis of the chapters of the Holy 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.  [2]
In order to augment and add more explanation as already provided by [2], additional input has been interjected from following sources: 
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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