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Friday, 09 March 2018

Surat Al-Anaam/Cattle -- Meccan –Ayats 165 Section – Five – Verses From 91-95

They (Jews-Quraish Pagans-Idolaters) did not estimate God with a just estimation due to Him when they said:”Nothing did God send down to any human (by way of Revelation”. Say:”Who then sent down the Book which Moses brought; a light and guidance to mankind which you (the Jews) have made it into (separate) paper sheets disclosing (some of it), while you conceal much (of its contents). And you (Believers in God and His Messenger Muhammad PPBUH) were taught (through the Qur’an) that which neither of you nor your fathers knew.” Say:”God (sent it down)”. Then leave them to plunge/play in their vain discourse and trifling. (91)       

وَمَا قَدَرُوا اللَّهَ حَقَّ قَدْرِهِ إِذْ قَالُوا مَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ عَلَى بَشَرٍ مِنْ شَيْءٍ قُلْ مَنْ أَنْزَلَ الْكِتَابَ الَّذِي جَاءَ بِهِ مُوسَى نُورًا وَهُدًى لِلنَّاسِ تَجْعَلُونَهُ قَرَاطِيسَ تُبْدُونَهَا وَتُخْفُونَ كَثِيرًا وَعُلِّمْتُمْ مَا لَمْ تَعْلَمُوا أَنْتُمْ وَلَا آَبَاؤُكُمْ قُلِ اللَّهُ ثُمَّ ذَرْهُمْ فِي خَوْضِهِمْ يَلْعَبُونَ (91)

And this is a Book (the Qur’an) is a blessed Book which We have sent down, confirming (the revelations) which came before it, so that you may warn the Mother of (Villages) Cities/Towns (Mecca) and all those around it. Those who believe in the Hereafter believe in this Book (the Qur’an), and they are constant in guarding their Prayer. 92)    

وَهَذَا كِتَابٌ أَنْزَلْنَاهُ مُبَارَكٌ مُصَدِّقُ الَّذِي بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ وَلِتُنْذِرَ أُمَّ الْقُرَى وَمَنْ حَوْلَهَا وَالَّذِينَ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِالْآَخِرَةِ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِهِ وَهُمْ عَلَى صَلَاتِهِمْ يُحَافِظُونَ (92)

And who can be more unjust wicked than the one who invents a lie against God, or say:”I have received inspiration/revelation has come to him”. Whereas no Revelation has come to him in anything, and who says:”I will/can reveal the like of what God has revealed”? And if you but could see how the wicked/iniquitous/transgressors are in the flood of confusion in agonies at death, while the angels are stretching forth their hands, (saying) “Yield up/deliver your souls! This day you shall be recompensed with your reward; the penalty of shame/a torment of degradation, because of what you used to utter lies against God other than the truth. And you used scornfully to reject His Signs/ Verses with disrespect!” (93)     

وَمَنْ أَظْلَمُ مِمَّنِ افْتَرَى عَلَى اللَّهِ كَذِبًا أَوْ قَالَ أُوحِيَ إِلَيَّ وَلَمْ يُوحَ إِلَيْهِ شَيْءٌ وَمَنْ قَالَ سَأُنْزِلُ مِثْلَ مَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ وَلَوْ تَرَى إِذِ الظَّالِمُونَ فِي غَمَرَاتِ الْمَوْتِ وَالْمَلَائِكَةُ بَاسِطُو أَيْدِيهِمْ أَخْرِجُوا أَنْفُسَكُمُ الْيَوْمَ تُجْزَوْنَ عَذَابَ الْهُونِ بِمَا كُنْتُمْ تَقُولُونَ عَلَى اللَّهِ غَيْرَ الْحَقِّ وَكُنْتُمْ عَنْ آَيَاتِهِ تَسْتَكْبِرُونَ (93)

And behold! Truly, you have come to Us bare and alone (without wealth, companions, or anything else) as We created you for the first time. You have left behind you all (the favors) which We have bestowed on you.  We see not with you your intercessors whom you claimed/thought to be partners in your affairs with God. So now all relations between you and them have been cut off and all that you used to claim has vanished from you- and all your (pet) fancies have left you in the lurch! (94)

وَلَقَدْ جِئْتُمُونَا فُرَادَى كَمَا خَلَقْنَاكُمْ أَوَّلَ مَرَّةٍ وَتَرَكْتُمْ مَا خَوَّلْنَاكُمْ وَرَاءَ ظُهُورِكُمْ وَمَا نَرَى مَعَكُمْ شُفَعَاءَكُمُ الَّذِينَ زَعَمْتُم أَنَّهُمْ فِيكُمْ شُرَكَاءُ لَقَدْ تَقَطَّعَ بَيْنَكُمْ وَضَلَّ عَنْكُمْ مَا كُنْتُمْ تَزْعُمُونَ (94)ْ

Verily, it is God Who causes the seed-grain, and the date-stone (nucleolus) to split and sprout. He causes the living to come forth from the dead, and it is He is the One Who causes to bring forth the dead from the living. That is God, then how are you deluded away from the Truth?” (95)

إِنَّ اللَّهَ فَالِقُ الْحَبِّ وَالنَّوَى يُخْرِجُ الْحَيَّ مِنَ الْمَيِّتِ وَمُخْرِجُ الْمَيِّتِ مِنَ الْحَيِّ ذَلِكُمُ اللَّهُ فَأَنَّى تُؤْفَكُونَ (95)

(Verse 91)-A/ Qadara= to weight, judge, or estimate the value or capacity of anything; to have power so to do. (See Qadir = Surat Al-Nisa’ 4 verse 149). The Jews who denied the inspiration of Muhammad [PPBUH] had a good answer in their own books about the inspiration of Moses. To those who do not believe in Moses, the answer is more general: is it a just estimate of God to think either that He has not the power or the will to guide mankind, seeing that He is Omnipotent and the Source of all good? If you say that guidance comes –not through an inspired book or man- but through our general intelligence, we point to the spiritual ignorance of “you and your ancestors” the sad spiritual darkness of men and nations high in the intellectual scale. B/ (See also Surat Al-Maida 5 verses 47+49). In those passages Guidance (in practical conduct) is put before Light (for spiritual insight), as they refer to ordinary or average men. Here Light (or spiritual insight) is put first as the question is: does God send inspiration? C/The Message to Moses had unity; it was one Book. The present Old Testament* is a collection of odd books (“sheets”) of various kinds. In this way you can make a show, but there is no unity, and much of the spirit of the original is lost or concealed or overlaid. The same applies to the New Testament*. (**a separate article on the Torah and the Bible has been published before).
(Verse 92)- A/ Mubarakun: blessed as having received God’s blessings; bringer of blessings to others, as having been blessed by God. God’s highest blessing is the Guidance and Light which the Book brings to us, and which brings us nearer to Him. B/ Mother of Cities: Mecca, now the Qibla and Center of Islam. If this verse was -like the greater part of the Chapter- revealed in Mecca before the Hijrat, and before Mecca was made the Qibla of Islam, Mecca was nonetheless the Mother of Cities, being traditionally associated with Ibrahim and with Adam and Eve (See Surat Al-Bagara 2 verses 125 and 197). All round Mecca: would mean, the whole world if we look upon Mecca as the Centre. C/ An earnest study of the Qur’an are true worship; so is Prayer, and so are all deeds of goodness and charity.
(Verse 93)-Yield up your souls: or “get your souls to come out of your bodies”. The wicked and iniquitous –we may suppose- are not anxious to part with the material existence in their bodies for the “reward” which in irony is stated to be there to welcome them.
A. What is said regarding the punishment in the grave? And the Rules Stated by God as mentioned before, also in Surat Al-Tauba 9 verse 101, and Surat Ghafir 40 verses 45-46. Hadeeth Sharif: Narrated Al-Barra’ bin ‘Azib: The Prophet [PPBUH] said:”when a faithful believer is made to sit in his grave, then the angels come to him and he testifies that ‘La ilaha illa-allah WA Anna Muhammadan Rasulullah’=none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and Muhammad [PPBUH] is the Messenger of Allah’. And that corresponds to Allah’s Statement: ‘Allah will keep firm those who believe with the word that stands firm’ – Surat Ibrahim 14 verse 27.
B. Narrated Anas: The Prophet [PPBUH] said:”When a human being is laid in his grave and his companions return and he even hears their footsteps, two angels come to him and make him sit and ask him:”What did you use to say about this man Muhammad [PPBUH]?” He will say:”I testify that he is the God’s slave and His Messenger”. Then it will be said to him:”Look at your place in the Hell-Fire, God has changed for you a place in Paradise instead of it”. The Prophet [PPBUH] added:” the dead person will see both his places. But the disbeliever or a hypocrite will say to the angels ‘I don’t know, but I used to say what the people used to say!’ It will be said to him: ’Neither did you know nor did you take the guidance (by following the Qur’an)’. Then he will be hit with an iron hammer between his two ears, and he will cry and that cry will be heard by whatsoever near to him beings and Jinn”. {Sahih Al-Bukhary}.
(Verse 94)-A/ some of the various ideas connected with “creation” are noted in Surat Al-Bagara 2 verse 117 and the accompanying commentary. In the creation of man there are various processes. If his body was created out of clay, i.e. earthy matter, there was an earlier process of the creation of such earthy matter. Here the body is left behind, and the soul is being addressed. The sould underwent various processes of fashioning and adapting to its various functions in its various surroundings (see Surat Al-Sajda 32 verses 7-9). But each individual soul –after release from the body- comes back as it was created, with nothing more than its history; “the deeds which is has earned”, which are really a part of it. Any exterior things given to help in its development, “the favors which we bestowed on you”, it must necessarily leave behind; however it may have been proud of them. These exterior things may be material things, e.g. wealth, property, signs of power, influence and pride such as sons, relatives, and friends, etc... Or they may be intangible things, like talents, intellect, social gifts, etc… B/ the false ideas of intercessors, demigods, gods, savors, etc… now vanish like unsubstantial visions, “leaving not a wrack behind”. Now the soul is face to face with reality. Its personal responsibility is brought home to it.
(Verse 95)- A/ another beautiful nature passage, referring to God’s wonderful artistry in His Creation. In how few and how simple words, the whole pageant of Creation is placed before us. Beginning from our humble animal needs and dependence on the vegetable world, we are asked to contemplate the interaction of the living and the dead. Here is a mystic teaching, referring not only to physical life but to the higher life above the physical plane; not only to individual life, but to the collective life of nations. Then we take a peep into the daily miracle of morning, noon, and night, and pass on to the stars that guide the distant mariner. We rise still higher to the mystery of the countless individuals from the one human soul, their sojourn and their destiny. So we get back to the heavens; the description of the luscious fruits which the “gentle rain from heaven” produces leaves us to contemplate the spiritual fruits which faith will provide for us, with the aid of the showers of God’s Mercy. B/ the seed grain and the date-stone are selected as types in the vegetable kingdom, showing how our physical life depends on it. The fruits mentioned later (in verse 99) start another allegory which we shall notice later. Botanists will notice that the seed-grain includes the cereals (such as wheat, barley, rice, millet, etc…) which are monocotyledons, as well as the pulses (such as beans, peas, grain, etc…) and other seeds which are dicotyledons. These two represent the most important classes of food grains, while the date palm -a monocotyledon- represents for Arabia both foods, fruit, confectionery thatch and pillars for houses, shady groves in oases, and a standard measure of wealth and well being. “Split and sprout”: both ideas are included in the root {Falaqa}, and a third is expressed by the word “cleave” in the next verse, for the action of evolving day-break from the dark.  For vegetables “split and sprout” represents a double process: (1) the seed divides, and (2) one part shoots up, seeking the light, and the forming leaves and the visible parts of the future tree, and the other part digs down into the dark, forming the roots and seeking just that sustenance from the soil, which is adapted for particular plant. This is just one small instance of the “judgment and ordering” of God, referred to in the next verse (96). C/ This do not mean that in physical nature there are no limits between life and non-life, between the organic and the non-organic. In fact physicists are baffled at the barrier between them and frankly confess that they cannot solve the mystery of Life. If there is such a barrier in physical nature, is it not all the more wonderful that God can create Life out of the nothing? He has but to say “BE” and it is. He can bring Life from non-Life and annihilate Life. But there are two other senses in which we can contemplate the contrast between the living and the dead. (1) We have just been speaking of the botanical world. Take it as a whole, and see the contrast between the winter of death, the spring of revivification, the summer of growth, and the autumn of decay, leading back to the death of winter. Here is a cycle of living from dead, and dead from living. (2) Take our spiritual life, individual or collective. We rise from the darkness of spiritual nothingness to the light of spiritual life. And if we do not follow the spiritual laws, God will take away that life and we shall be again dead. We may die many deaths. The keys of life and death are in God’s hands. Neither Life nor Death are fortuitous things. Behind them both is the Cause of Causes; and only HE.