وَالسَّمَاءِ وَالطَّارِقِ ﴿1﴾ وَمَا أَدْرَاكَ مَا الطَّارِقُ ﴿2﴾ النَّجْمُ الثَّاقِبُ ﴿3﴾ إِنْ كُلُّ نَفْسٍ لَمَّا عَلَيْهَا حَافِظٌ ﴿4﴾ فَلْيَنْظُرِ الْإِنْسَانُ مِمَّ خُلِقَ ﴿5﴾ خُلِقَ مِنْ مَاءٍ دَافِقٍ ﴿6﴾ يَخْرُجُ مِنْ بَيْنِ الصُّلْبِ وَالتَّرَائِبِ ﴿7﴾ إِنَّهُ عَلَىٰ رَجْعِهِ لَقَادِرٌ ﴿8﴾ يَوْمَ تُبْلَى السَّرَائِرُ ﴿9﴾ فَمَا لَهُ مِنْ قُوَّةٍ وَلَا نَاصِرٍ ﴿10﴾ وَالسَّمَاءِ ذَاتِ الرَّجْعِ ﴿11﴾ وَالْأَرْضِ ذَاتِ الصَّدْعِ ﴿12﴾ إِنَّهُ لَقَوْلٌ فَصْلٌ ﴿13﴾ وَمَا هُوَ بِالْهَزْلِ ﴿14﴾ إِنَّهُمْ يَكِيدُونَ كَيْدًا ﴿15﴾ وَأَكِيدُ كَيْدًا ﴿16﴾ فَمَهِّلِ الْكَافِرِينَ أَمْهِلْهُمْ رُوَيْدًا ﴿17﴾
Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem
- Wassamaaa’i wattaariq
- Wa maaa adraaka mattaariq
- Annajmus saaqib
- In kullu nafsil lammaa ‘alaihaa haafiz
- Fal yanzuril insaanu mimma khuliq
- Khuliqa mim maaa’in daafiq
- Yakhruju mim bainissulbi wat taraaa’ib
- Innahoo ‘alaa raj’ihee laqaadir
- Yawma tublas saraaa’ir
- Famaa lahoo min quwwatinw wa laa naasir
- Wassamaaa’i zaatir raj’
- Wal ardi zaatis sad’
- Innahoo laqawlun fasl
- Wa maa huwa bil hazl
- Innahum yakeedoona kaidaa
- Wa akeedu kaidaa
- Famahhilil kaafireena amhilhum ruwaidaa
In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
- I swear by the sky and by the Night-Comer,__
- __and what may let you know what the Night-Comer is?
- The star of piercing brightness!_ _
- __there is no human being, but there is a watcher over him.
- So, let man consider of which stuff he is created.
- He is created of spouting water
- that comes out from between the loins and the chest-bones.
- Surely He is Powerful to bring him back
- on a day when all the secrets will be searched out,
- and he will have neither strength (to defend) , nor a supporter.
- I swear by the sky that rains,
- and the earth that cracks open (for plants) ,
- this is a decisive word,
- and it is not a joke.
- They are devising plans,
- and I Am devising plans.
- So leave the disbelievers alone at the moment; give them respite for a while.
After swearing an oath by the sky and stars, in this Surah, Allah asserts that He has assigned a guardian angel to every human being who watches over his deeds and actions, and accurate and immediate record is kept on the basis of which the reckoning will be made, and on the Day of Reckoning, all secrets will be revealed. The rational conclusion is that man must ponder over the consequences of the deeds he is doing in this life.
Therefore, he should not, at any moment of his life, lose sight of what is to happen on the Day of Reckoning. Thereafter, the verse disposes of a doubt that the Satan perennially casts into the people’s hearts. When they are dead and have become dust and decomposed particles, how will they be recomposed and life be brought back? This seems to be an imaginary thought, rather, in the view of the general public, it is impossible.
In answer to this doubt, man is invited to reflect on his origin. At the inception, he was created from various elements collected from throughout the world, and Allah’s Power transformed them into a human being who is able to listen and see. Allah Who has created him and looked after him is well able to bring him back to life after death. Then some events of the Day of Judgment are mentioned.
Then, after swearing an oath by the earth and the sky, the negligent man is told that the Hereafter he is urged to care about is no joke or amusement, but it is a reality that has to come to pass. Towards the end of the Surah, the unbelievers pose the question: If Allah abhors disbelief, idolatry and sins, why then does He not punish us in this life? The Surah ends with a rebuttal to this question. Let us now explain some expressions used in the Surah:
The first oath, in the beginning of the Surah, is by the sky and tariq. The word tariq means the ‘Night-Corner’. Stars normally disappear during the day and only appear at night, therefore they are called tariq. The Qur’an itself raises the question:
وَمَا أَدْرَاكَ مَا الطَّارِقُ (and what may let you know what the Night-Comer is?…86:2) and then answers the question thus: النَّجْمُ الثَّاقِبُ (The star of piercing brightness!…86:3). The word najm means ‘star’. The Qur’an does not specify any particular ‘star’. Therefore, it may be applied to any star. Some of the commentators say that najm refers to the Pleiades or Saturn, and they quote specimens of Arabic speech to confirm their argument. The word thaqib means ‘piercing brightness’.
إِن كُلُّ نَفْسٍ لَّمَّا عَلَيْهَا حَافِظٌ (there is no human being, but there is a watcher over him….86:4). This is the subject of the oath. The particle in at the beginning of the statement is used in the sense of ‘no’, that is, a negative particle; and the particle lamma is used in the sense of ‘but/except’, that is, it is an exceptive particle in the dialect of Banu Hudhail. The verse purports to say that there is not a single person over whom there is not a watcher [ hafiz ]. The word hafiz may mean ‘guardian’ who may watch over someone’s actions and deeds, so that the reckoning is made on that basis. The word hafiz may also be used in the sense of ‘one who protects from calamities’. In the first sense, the word hafiz refers to the angels who record the deeds. Here the word hafiz , although appears in the singular form, it is used in the generic sense, because there is not just a single recording angel, but there is a host of them as another verse testifies to this fact:
﴿وَإِنَّ عَلَيْكُمْ لَحَافِظِينَ ﴿١٠﴾ كِرَامًا كَاتِبِينَ﴾
‘While [ appointed ] over you there are watchers, who are noble, the writers [ of the deeds ],[ 82: 10-11] ‘
According to the second sense of the word, hafiz refers to the angels who have been appointed to protect man from all kinds of calamities that befall him day and night, except the calamities that Allah has decreed for him, as the following verse explicitly states:
﴿لَهُ مُعَقِّبَاتٌ مِّن بَيْنِ يَدَيْهِ وَمِنْ خَلْفِهِ يَحْفَظُونَهُ مِنْ أَمْرِ اللَّـهِ﴾
‘For him there are angels replacing each other, before him and
behind him, who guard him under the command of Allah [ 13:11]
A tradition has reported the Messenger of Allah saying that Allah has appointed three hundred and sixty angels for every believer. They protect every limb of his. Of the three hundred and sixty, seven angels alone protect man’s eye. These angels defend man from every calamity that is not decreed, like a fan chases away the flies coming to a vessel containing honey. If there are no security guards for man, the devils will snatch them away. [ Qurtubi ].
خُلِقَ مِن مَّاءٍ دَافِقٍ ﴿٦﴾ يَخْرُجُ مِن بَيْنِ الصُّلْبِ وَالتَّرَائِبِ (He is created of a spouting water that comes out from between the loins and the chest-bones…86:6, 7). The general body of commentators have explained that the spouting water (sperm) comes out from the loins of men and the chest-bones of women. However, the research of embryological science on the subject shows that the seminal fluid comes out from every part of human body, and every part of the foetus is made of the seminal fluid that has come out from that part of the man’s and woman’s body.
The brain, of course, plays the greatest role in this matter. Thus experience shows that people who indulge in excessive cohabitation mostly suffer from weakness of mental weakness. The embryologists have at the same time discovered that the seminal fluid separates from all parts of the body, and through the spinal cord, collects in the testes and from there it spouts.
If these findings have any value, it is not far-fetched to reconcile them with the explanation of some of the commentators. Embryologists agree that the brain plays the most important role in the preparation of seminal fluid. The representative of the brain is the spinal cord that has come into the backbone from the brain, up to the loins and the testes. Some of its branches have come into the chest-bones. It is likely that the seminal fluid coming from the chest-bones into the woman’s seminal fluid and the seminal fluid coming from the loins into a man’s seminal fluid have a greater role to play. (Baidawi)
If we analyse the verse of the Qur’an carefully, we notice that it does not specify ‘man or woman’. It merely says ‘He is created of spouting water that comes out from between the loins and the chest-bones.’ This may simply signify that the seminal fluid comes out from the entire body of both men and women. The expression ‘the entire body’ is understood from the mention of the principal organs of front and back. The front part of the body is chest and the back part of the body is the loin. These are the principal parts of the body. The expression, ‘the spouting water that comes out from between the loins and the chest-bones’ may mean ‘comes out from the entire body’.
إِنَّهُ عَلَىٰ رَجْعِهِ لَقَادِرٌ (Surely He is Powerful to bring him back…86:8) The word raj means ‘to bring back’. The verse signifies that Allah Who has created him from a drop of seminal fluid is well able to bring him back to life after death a fortiori.
يَوْمَ تُبْلَى السَّرَائِرُ (on a day when all the secrets will be searched out.. 86:9). The word tubla literally means ‘to test/examine’ and sara’ir means ‘secrets’. On the Day of Reckoning, the secrets will be tested and examined and laid bare. Man’s beliefs, his thoughts, and his motives and intentions that were hidden in this life, and no one knew about them, will be revealed in the Hereafter.
Likewise, his deeds and actions that he had done secretly, and no one was aware of them in this world, all of them will be tested and scrutinised on the Plain of Gathering and will be laid bare. Said ‘Abdullah Ibn ` Umar (رض) has said that on the Day of Judgment Allah will disclose the secrets of all human beings. The sign of every good or bad belief and action will be displayed on man’s face, in the form of beauty or darkness or gloom [ depending on each individual’s situation ]. [ Qurtubi ].
إِنَّهُ لَقَوْلٌ فَصْلٌ (this is a decisive word..86:13) In other words, the Qur’an is truly a Decisive Word that decides between truth and falsehood, and there is no room for any doubt in it.
Sayyidna ` Ali (رض) says that he heard the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) as saying about the Holy Qur’an:
کتاب فيه خبرما قبلکم و حکم ما بعدکم وهو الفصل ليس بالهزل
‘[ It is ] a book which describes the stories of past communities and [ it contains ] injunctions for future generations. It is truly a Decisive Word. It is no joke.’
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