وَ لَوۡ تَرٰۤی اِذۡ وُقِفُوۡا عَلٰی رَبِّہِمۡ ؕ قَالَ اَلَیۡسَ ہٰذَا بِالۡحَقِّ ؕ قَالُوۡا بَلٰی وَ رَبِّنَا ؕ قَالَ فَذُوۡقُوا الۡعَذَابَ بِمَا کُنۡتُمۡ تَکۡفُرُوۡنَ ﴿٪۳۱﴾
وَلَوۡ تَرَىٰٓ إِذۡ وُقِفُواْ عَلَىٰ رَبِّهِمۡۚ قَالَ أَلَيۡسَ هَٰذَا بِٱلۡحَقِّۚ قَالُواْ بَلَىٰ وَرَبِّنَاۚ قَالَ فَذُوقُواْ ٱلۡعَذَابَ بِمَا كُنتُمۡ تَكۡفُرُونَ
d. 46:35. (close)
b. 46:35. (close)
The words بلی و ربنا (Yea, by our Lord) speak of deeply stirred feelings and embody a pathetic, though veiled, appeal for mercy. But the time for mercy is past and nothing but the grim reality of God’s judgement now awaits them. (close)
قَدۡ خَسِرَ الَّذِیۡنَ کَذَّبُوۡا بِلِقَآءِ اللّٰہِ ؕ حَتّٰۤی اِذَا جَآءَتۡہُمُ السَّاعَۃُ بَغۡتَۃً قَالُوۡا یٰحَسۡرَتَنَا عَلٰی مَا فَرَّطۡنَا فِیۡہَا ۙ وَ ہُمۡ یَحۡمِلُوۡنَ اَوۡزَارَہُمۡ عَلٰی ظُہُوۡرِہِمۡ ؕ اَلَا سَآءَ مَا یَزِرُوۡنَ ﴿۳۲﴾
قَدۡ خَسِرَ ٱلَّذِينَ كَذَّبُواْ بِلِقَآءِ ٱللَّهِۖ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا جَآءَتۡهُمُ ٱلسَّاعَةُ بَغۡتَةٗ قَالُواْ يَٰحَسۡرَتَنَا عَلَىٰ مَا فَرَّطۡنَا فِيهَا وَهُمۡ يَحۡمِلُونَ أَوۡزَارَهُمۡ عَلَىٰ ظُهُورِهِمۡۚ أَلَا سَآءَ مَا يَزِرُونَ
a. 10:46. (close)
b. 2:168. (close)
840. The verse means that their burdens would be exceedingly heavy. (close)
a. 10:46. (close)
b. 2:168. (close)
779. Important Words:
فرطنا (our neglecting) is derived from فرّط (farrata) which again is derived from فرط (farata) which means, he went before or preceded. فرط منه الکلام means, the speech or the words issued from him hastily before reflection. فرط علیه means, he acted hastily and unjustly towards him. فرّطه (farratahu) means, he made him to precede; or he made him to be before, or beforehand or first or foremost. فرطه also means, he sent it before, himself remaining behind it. فرط عنه means, he left or forsook him; or he abstained or desisted from it. فرط فیه means, he neglected it or he was remiss with respect to it; or he preferred backwardness in it; or he failed to do, or fell short of doing, what he ought to have done with respect to it. افرط فی الامر means, he exceeded due bounds or just limits in the matter. Thus تفریط (from فرط) has generally come to mean, "falling short of" and إفراط(from افرط) "exceeding proper limits" (Lane & Aqrab).
الا (surely) originally denotes an interrogation respecting a negative, or a wish or reproof, or the asking for or requiring a thing. It is also used as an inceptive particle giving the sense of "now" or "why". It also means, verily, truly or surely (Lane).
The pronoun in فیھا (this) may refer to the "Hour" mentioned above. In that case, "neglecting this Hour" would mean that disbelievers never believed that the Hour would come and never gave it a thought; or it may refer to الدنیا (the earth) or to حیاتنا الدنیا (our present life) occurring in 6:30 above. In this case, the sentence would mean that they acted negligently during their life on this earth.
The words, they shall bear their burdens on their backs, are intended to hint that their burdens would be exceedingly heavy. (close)
وَ مَا الۡحَیٰوۃُ الدُّنۡیَاۤ اِلَّا لَعِبٌ وَّ لَہۡوٌ ؕ وَ لَلدَّارُ الۡاٰخِرَۃُ خَیۡرٌ لِّلَّذِیۡنَ یَتَّقُوۡنَ ؕ اَفَلَا تَعۡقِلُوۡنَ ﴿۳۳﴾
وَمَا ٱلۡحَيَوٰةُ ٱلدُّنۡيَآ إِلَّا لَعِبٞ وَلَهۡوٞۖ وَلَلدَّارُ ٱلۡأٓخِرَةُ خَيۡرٞ لِّلَّذِينَ يَتَّقُونَۚ أَفَلَا تَعۡقِلُونَ
c. 29:65; 47:37; 57:21. (close)
d. 7:170; 12:110. (close)
c. 29:65; 47:37; 57:21. (close)
d. 7:170; 12:110. (close)
780. Important Words:
لعب (sport). The verb form لعب means he played, sported or jested; or he did an act with the object of amusement or recreation or by way of jesting. It is often the opposite of جد which means, he was serious or in earnest. So لعب means, play, sport or jest; amusement or recreation (Aqrab & Lane).
لـھو (pastime) is derived from لـھا. They say لـھا عنه i.e. he became diverted from it so as to forget it. لـھت الـمراة الی حدیث الرجلmeans, the woman became cheered with, and was diverted by, the discourse of the man.
So لـھو means, diversion, pastime or sport; what occupies a man so as to divert him from that which would render him sad or serious; relief of the mind by such means as wisdom does not require (Lane & Lisan).
The words, And worldly life is nothing but a sport and a pastime, do not mean that life on this earth is only a sport. What is meant is that worldly life, i.e. life engrossed in the things of this world and passed in neglect of the Hereafter is nothing but a sport. Elsewhere (21:17, 18), the Quran says that God has not created this world as لعب (sport) or لـھو (pastime). Both announcements are equally correct. The words, And worldly life is nothing but a sport and a pastime, may also mean that the environments of this world are such that, unless one is particularly watchful, one is liable to become negligent about the next world, just as sports and pastimes often make man negligent of his duties on earth. (close)
قَدۡ نَعۡلَمُ اِنَّہٗ لَیَحۡزُنُکَ الَّذِیۡ یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ فَاِنَّہُمۡ لَا یُکَذِّبُوۡنَکَ وَ لٰکِنَّ الظّٰلِمِیۡنَ بِاٰیٰتِ اللّٰہِ یَجۡحَدُوۡنَ ﴿۳۴﴾
قَدۡ نَعۡلَمُ إِنَّهُۥ لَيَحۡزُنُكَ ٱلَّذِي يَقُولُونَۖ فَإِنَّهُمۡ لَا يُكَذِّبُونَكَ وَلَٰكِنَّ ٱلظَّـٰلِمِينَ بِـَٔايَٰتِ ٱللَّهِ يَجۡحَدُونَ
e. 15:98; 16:104 (close)
841. The Holy Prophet was full of the milk of human kindness. He was not upset by what the disbelievers said concerning him. He was grieved not because the disbelievers accused him of falsehood but because by rejecting Allah’s Signs they had shut on themselves the door of Divine mercy. (close)
a. 15:98; 16:104. (close)
The verse signifies that the Holy Prophet was grieved at the attitude of disbelievers, not because they accused him of falsehood but because their denial of him meant the denial of the signs of God. Thus the grief of the Holy Prophet was not personal, the cause of his grief being that God was being denied. It pained him to see people denying God. He did not mind denial of himself, but he could not bear to see men rejecting God and His Signs. (close)
وَ لَقَدۡ کُذِّبَتۡ رُسُلٌ مِّنۡ قَبۡلِکَ فَصَبَرُوۡا عَلٰی مَا کُذِّبُوۡا وَ اُوۡذُوۡا حَتّٰۤی اَتٰہُمۡ نَصۡرُنَا ۚ وَ لَا مُبَدِّلَ لِکَلِمٰتِ اللّٰہِ ۚ وَ لَقَدۡ جَآءَکَ مِنۡ نَّبَاِی الۡمُرۡسَلِیۡنَ ﴿۳۵﴾
وَلَقَدۡ كُذِّبَتۡ رُسُلٞ مِّن قَبۡلِكَ فَصَبَرُواْ عَلَىٰ مَا كُذِّبُواْ وَأُوذُواْ حَتَّىٰٓ أَتَىٰهُمۡ نَصۡرُنَاۚ وَلَا مُبَدِّلَ لِكَلِمَٰتِ ٱللَّهِۚ وَلَقَدۡ جَآءَكَ مِن نَّبَإِيْ ٱلۡمُرۡسَلِينَ
842. God lovingly addresses the Holy Prophet with these words of comfort and solace. He is told that Prophets before him were also rejected, scoffed at and ridiculed. (close)
f. 2:215; 40:52. (close)
a. 6:116. (close)
843. The Divine law that Divine help comes to the Prophets of God and their enemies come to grief is unalterable. (close)
a. 2:215; 40:52. (close)
b. 6:116. (close)
In this verse God, lovingly addresses the Holy Prophet with words of comfort and solace, as if saying: "We know that thou art indeed pained to see people denying God, but the law of God cannot be changed. We never compel men to become believers." The words, There is none that can change the words of Allah, refer to this very law of God, which is unalterable. The law is twofold: firstly, that whenever a Prophet of God appears, there are always men who deny and oppose him; secondly, that God never compels such men to accept the truth. See 2:257; 3:21; 36:31. (close)
وَ اِنۡ کَانَ کَبُرَ عَلَیۡکَ اِعۡرَاضُہُمۡ فَاِنِ اسۡتَطَعۡتَ اَنۡ تَبۡتَغِیَ نَفَقًا فِی الۡاَرۡضِ اَوۡ سُلَّمًا فِی السَّمَآءِ فَتَاۡتِیَہُمۡ بِاٰیَۃٍ ؕ وَ لَوۡ شَآءَ اللّٰہُ لَجَمَعَہُمۡ عَلَی الۡہُدٰی فَلَا تَکُوۡنَنَّ مِنَ الۡجٰہِلِیۡنَ ﴿۳۶﴾
وَإِن كَانَ كَبُرَ عَلَيۡكَ إِعۡرَاضُهُمۡ فَإِنِ ٱسۡتَطَعۡتَ أَن تَبۡتَغِيَ نَفَقٗا فِي ٱلۡأَرۡضِ أَوۡ سُلَّمٗا فِي ٱلسَّمَآءِ فَتَأۡتِيَهُم بِـَٔايَةٖۚ وَلَوۡ شَآءَ ٱللَّهُ لَجَمَعَهُمۡ عَلَى ٱلۡهُدَىٰۚ فَلَا تَكُونَنَّ مِنَ ٱلۡجَٰهِلِينَ
844. The words, to seek a passage into the earth, signify 'using worldly means,' i.e. preaching and propagating the truth; and the words, a ladder unto heaven, imply 'using spiritual means,' i.e. offering prayers to God for the guidance of disbelievers, etc. Prayer is indeed the ladder by which a man can spiritually mount to heaven. The Holy Prophet is told to employ both these means. The word Jahil as in 2:274 means "one not knowing" or "unacquainted." The Holy Prophet is exhorted not to remain unacquainted with the law of God in this respect. The verse also sheds light on the Holy Prophet’s great solicitude and concern for the spiritual well-being of his people. He was prepared to go to any length to bring them a Sign, even if he had "to seek a passage in the earth or a ladder unto heaven." (close)
b. 5:49; 6:150; 11:119; 13:32; 16:10. (close)
c. 5:49; 6:150; 11:119; 13:32; 16:10. (close)
783. Important Words:
نفقا (passage). نفق means, a hole or a passage bored into or through the earth and having an opening at the other end (Aqrab). See also 9:67.
سلما (ladder) is derived from سلم (sallama). They say سلمه i.e. he made him safe and secure. سلمه الیه means, he gave or delivered it to him. سلم (sullam) means, a ladder or series of stairs or steps meant for ascending. It is so called because it delivers one to the place to which one desires to go. The word also signifies a means to a thing (Lane).
The words, to seek a passage into the earth, signify using worldly means, i.e. preaching and propagating the truth in the earth in order to strengthen the faith; and the words, a ladder unto Heaven, imply using spiritual means, i.e. offering up prayers to God for the guidance of disbelievers, etc. Prayer is indeed the ladder by which a man can mount to Heaven.
The Holy Prophet has been told here that God is not going to compel men to embrace Islam; if he desires their wholesale conversion he should assiduously follow the two prescribed courses, one earthly and the other heavenly. He should, on the one hand, devote himself vigorously to preaching and propagating the truth; and, on the other, he should fervently pray to God that He may guide mankind and help the cause of Islam.
It goes without saying that the Holy Prophet acted upon both these methods to the fullest extent, as a result of which God helped the cause of Islam, so much so that within a small space of time the whole of Arabia was converted.
The word جاھل (one lacking knowledge) is here used only in the sense of one not knowing or unacquainted, and not in the stronger sense of ignorant. It has been also used in this sense in other verses of the Quran. For instance, we read in 2:274; "One who does not know them (the needy) thinks them to be free from want", i.e. those who are unacquainted with the real condition of the poor, think them to be well off. In the verse under comment, the Holy Prophet has been exhorted not to remain unacquainted with the law of God in this respect.
It should also be noted that it was not by way of rebuke, as some have thought, that the Holy Prophet was asked to seek a passage into the earth or a ladder into the sky. The words become meaningless, if taken in that light. What is meant is simply the suggestion of two ways of success which, when acted upon, proved wonderfully effective. (close)
اِنَّمَا یَسۡتَجِیۡبُ الَّذِیۡنَ یَسۡمَعُوۡنَ ؕؔ وَ الۡمَوۡتٰی یَبۡعَثُہُمُ اللّٰہُ ثُمَّ اِلَیۡہِ یُرۡجَعُوۡنَ ﴿۳۷﴾
۞إِنَّمَا يَسۡتَجِيبُ ٱلَّذِينَ يَسۡمَعُونَۘ وَٱلۡمَوۡتَىٰ يَبۡعَثُهُمُ ٱللَّهُ ثُمَّ إِلَيۡهِ يُرۡجَعُونَ
844A. This shows that the word Mauta has also been used in the Qur’an about those deprived of truth. (close)
845. The verse mentions two classes of men: (a) Those who are good at heart and listen to, and readily accept, the truth; and (b) those who are potentially dead but are fit for spiritual regeneration. God will quicken them with a Sign and then they will also listen and embrace Islam. (close)
The verse signifies that those who are good of heart and are willing to listen will readily accept the truth as the result of preaching. As for those who are potentially dead but are fit for rejuvenation, God will quicken them with a sign and then they will listen and embrace Islam. Thus, it was that when God showed His sign at the Fall of Mecca, the whole of Arabia embraced Islam, and the Word of God was fulfilled. (close)
وَ قَالُوۡا لَوۡ لَا نُزِّلَ عَلَیۡہِ اٰیَۃٌ مِّنۡ رَّبِّہٖ ؕ قُلۡ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ قَادِرٌ عَلٰۤی اَنۡ یُّنَزِّلَ اٰیَۃً وَّ لٰکِنَّ اَکۡثَرَ ہُمۡ لَا یَعۡلَمُوۡنَ ﴿۳۸﴾
وَقَالُواْ لَوۡلَا نُزِّلَ عَلَيۡهِ ءَايَةٞ مِّن رَّبِّهِۦۚ قُلۡ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ قَادِرٌ عَلَىٰٓ أَن يُنَزِّلَ ءَايَةٗ وَلَٰكِنَّ أَكۡثَرَهُمۡ لَا يَعۡلَمُونَ
a. 10:21; 29:51. (close)
a. 10:21; 29:51. (close)
The words, Allah has power to send down a sign, do not mean that though God has the power to send down a sign, yet He will not actually do so. The word قادر (having power) used as active participle is intended to denote readiness to show the required power and the closing words of the verse support that inference.
The word قادر also embodies the sense of measuring and determining (Lane). In this sense, the clause would mean that God is devising means for the success of Islam, for people are already joining Islam and swelling the number of Muslims. This is a clear indication of the will of God, but disbelievers would not ponder over it. The Quran makes this point clear by suitable illustrations in the following verse. (close)
وَ مَا مِنۡ دَآبَّۃٍ فِی الۡاَرۡضِ وَ لَا طٰٓئِرٍ یَّطِیۡرُ بِجَنَاحَیۡہِ اِلَّاۤ اُمَمٌ اَمۡثَالُکُمۡ ؕ مَا فَرَّطۡنَا فِی الۡکِتٰبِ مِنۡ شَیۡءٍ ثُمَّ اِلٰی رَبِّہِمۡ یُحۡشَرُوۡنَ ﴿۳۹﴾
وَمَا مِن دَآبَّةٖ فِي ٱلۡأَرۡضِ وَلَا طَـٰٓئِرٖ يَطِيرُ بِجَنَاحَيۡهِ إِلَّآ أُمَمٌ أَمۡثَالُكُمۚ مَّا فَرَّطۡنَا فِي ٱلۡكِتَٰبِ مِن شَيۡءٖۚ ثُمَّ إِلَىٰ رَبِّهِمۡ يُحۡشَرُونَ
b. 11:7, 57. (close)
846. The verse points out that even birds and insects, like ants, can understand from atmospheric change that a storm is imminent, and animals like dogs understand the orders of their masters but the foolish disbelievers do not see the writing on the wall and do not realize that by rejecting the Holy Prophet they are incurring the displeasure of God. They are warned that all their actions have been recorded and they will have to answer for them. The verse further seems to point to two classes of men: (a) Those who like the beasts are wholly bent upon the earth and their entire life is confined to satisfying their physical desires. (b) Those who like birds soar high into spiritual regions—highly spiritual persons having been likened to birds in the Qur’an (3:50). (close)
c. 16:90. (close)
b. 11:7, 57. (close)
c. 16:90. (close)
786. Important Words:
امم (communities), which is derived from ام i.e. he betook himself to or aimed at or sought, is the plural of امة which means, a way, course or manner of acting or of conduct or of life; religion, which is a course that men follow; the followers of a religion; or a people to whom a Prophet is sent, whether unbelievers or believers; a generation; a nation, a people, a race, a tribe or a family; a collective body of men or of other living beings; a kind, genus or generical class; creatures of God. It also means, a righteous man who is an object of imitation, being a model for others; or one who follows the true religion; or a learned man who has no equal in his time (Lane).
امثال (like) is the plural مثل (mathal) and مثل (mithl), both being derived from the verb مثل for which see 2:107. مثل (mathal) means, description, condition, state or case; a description by way of comparison; similitude; argument or sign, etc. The word is also used in the sense of مثل (mithl) which means, a like; one similar to; the thing itself, i.e. the same as (Aqrab Lane).
The Quran draws the attention of disbelievers to the animals that move on the earth and to the birds that fly in the air. Even animals and birds can understand by means of signs that a change has taken place in the season, but disbelievers are worse than these; for they do not see the signs which indicate that Islam is triumphing while disbelief is beating a retreat. Even a dog can see whether its master is angry or pleased; but disbelievers cannot see whether their Lord is displeased with them. Thus, both the birds that fly in the air and the animals that move on the earth are, in this respect, better than disbelievers.
Incidentally, the verse also hints that even birds and animals will be resurrected and requited for their actions like men. The resemblance between the requital of men and animals may not be perfect, but it is still there. Some of the sayings of the Holy Prophet also lend support to this conclusion; for it is said in a hadith that the horned goat shall be made to pay penalty to the goat without horns which it kills or injures (Muslim, ch. on Tahrimuz-Zulm).
The last words of the verse, i.e. We have left out nothing in the Book. Then to their Lord shall they be gathered together, may also refer to disbelievers. In that case, this part of the verse would mean that all the works of disbelievers will be preserved and nothing will be left out, and that they will finally be requited for their actions on the Day of Resurrection. (close)
وَ الَّذِیۡنَ کَذَّبُوۡا بِاٰیٰتِنَا صُمٌّ وَّ بُکۡمٌ فِی الظُّلُمٰتِ ؕ مَنۡ یَّشَاِ اللّٰہُ یُضۡلِلۡہُ ؕ وَ مَنۡ یَّشَاۡ یَجۡعَلۡہُ عَلٰی صِرَاطٍ مُّسۡتَقِیۡمٍ ﴿۴۰﴾
وَٱلَّذِينَ كَذَّبُواْ بِـَٔايَٰتِنَا صُمّٞ وَبُكۡمٞ فِي ٱلظُّلُمَٰتِۗ مَن يَشَإِ ٱللَّهُ يُضۡلِلۡهُ وَمَن يَشَأۡ يَجۡعَلۡهُ عَلَىٰ صِرَٰطٖ مُّسۡتَقِيمٖ
d. 2:19, 172; 27:81, 82; 30:53, 54. (close)
a. 2:19,172; 27:81-82; 30:53-54. (close)