Explanation Of Surat al-ikhlas (II)


Fourteen hundred years ago, the polytheists and Jews in Arabia asked Prophet Muhammad (s.a.a.w.) questions about God. Some of these questions were: Tell us of your Lord’s ancestery. O Muhammad, tell us attributes of your Lord, who has sent you as prophet. What is your Lord made of? Is He made of gold, silver, iron or what? Does He belong to a race of Gods? Does He have parents or children? Who will inherit the earth after Him? The answer came in the following verse of the Holy Quran:

قُلْ هُوَ اللَّهُ أَحَدٌ

Say: “He is Allah, the One and Only.” (The Holy Quran, Surah Al-Ikhlas, Ayah 1, 112:1). Let us first analyze the sentence, “Huwa-Allahu Ahad”, هُوَ ٱللَّهُ أَحَدٌ   lexically. This name is used in the Qur’ân. For example, see 112:1. The ancient roots of Ahad point toward to the essential qualities which describe Unity, while the ancient roots of Wâhid point toward the manifestations which arise from that Unity. That which is Ahad cannot be divided into parts, or any parts distinguished. That which is Wâhid has the appearance of being divisible into separate parts, or being comprised of separate parts. Ahad is used to refer to the One, the sole One, the One who was not begotten and who has ever been alone, the One who has no second, the Indivisible. Wâhid indicates the solitary Starting Point, the One Source, the First of the Many, from which all of creation has arisen as manifestations of Unity. From a human point of view, the manifestations may appear separate and diverse, but in reality they are One.

Allah: The polytheist arabs would use the word Allah for God, but what they associated with Him was not correct. So when Allah’s Messenger came with the correct teachings on who Allah was, the polytheists would be confused. ‘We believe in Allah, and you believe in Allah, so why do we dispute?’. “siflannaa Rabbak” – describe for us the Attributes (sifaat) of your Lord.’ They would say. A min dhahab, a min fiddah (is He made of gold, is he made of silver?) – they had these thoughts because they believed these metals were precious and expensive – so their gods were a source of competition of pride i.e. our god is made of gold. They boasted. Ansib hu? – what’s his lineage/family escendence? Hadith: A polytheist once came to Allah’s Messenger and said; Everything was created by Allah, fa man khalaqAllah? – then who created Allah?

Allah’s Messenger became extremely angry, so Angel Jibreel calmed him down and Allah revealed this surah. The Sahabas’ Love for Surah al Ikhlas and it’s Virtues; Al-Bukhari reported from `Amrah bint `Abdur-Rahman, who used to stay in the apartment of `A’ishah, the wife of the Prophet , that `A’ishah said, “The Prophet sent a man as the commander of a war expedition and he used to lead his companions in prayer with recitation (of the Qur’an). And he would complete his recitation with the recitation of `Say: He is Allah, One.’ So when they returned they mentioned that to the Prophet and he said,

«سَلُوهُ لِأَيِّ شَيْءٍ يَصْنَعُ ذَلِكَ؟»

(Ask him why does he do that.) So they asked him and he said, `Because it is the description of Ar-Rahman and I love to recite it. So the Prophet said,

«أَخْبِرُوهُ أَنَّ اللهَ تَعَالَى يُحِبُّه»

(Inform him that Allah the Most High loves him.)” This is how Al-Bukhari recorded this Hadith in his Book of Tawhid. Muslim and An-Nasa’i also recorded it. In his Book of Salah, Al-Bukhari recorded that Anas said, “A man from the Ansar used to lead the people in prayer in the Masjid of Quba’. Whenever he began a Surah in the recitation of the prayer that he was leading them, he would start by reciting `Say: He is Allah, One’ until he completed the entire Surah. Then he would recite another Surah along with it (after it). And used to do this in every Rak`ah. So his companions spoke to him about this saying; `Verily, you begin the prayer with this Surah. Then you think that it is not sufficient for you unless you recite another Surah as well. So you should either recite it or leave it and recite another Surah instead.’ The man replied, `I will not leave it off. If you want me to continue leading you (in prayer), I will do this; and if you all do not like it, I will leave you (i.e., I will stop leading you).’ They used to consider him to be of the best of them to lead them in prayer and they did not want anyone else to lead them other than him. So, when the Prophet came they informed him of this information and he said,

«يَا فُلَانُ، مَا يَمْنَعُكَ أَنْ تَفْعَلَ مَا يَأْمُرُكَ بِهِ أَصْحَابُكَ، وَمَا حَمَلَكَ عَلَى لُزُوم هَذِهِ السُّورَةِ فِي كُلِّ رَكْعَةٍ؟»

(O so-and-so! What prevents you from doing what your companions are commanding you to do, and what makes you adhere to the recitation of this Surah in every Rak`ah) The man said, `Verily, I love it.’ The Prophet replied,

«حُبُّكَ إِيَّاهَا أَدْخَلَكَ الْجَنَّة»

(Your love of it will cause you to enter Paradise.) This was recorded by Al-Bukhari

A Hadith that mentions this Surah is equivalent to a Third of the Qur’an. Al-Bukhari recorded from Abu Sa`id that a man heard another man reciting

[قُلْ هُوَ اللَّهُ أَحَدٌ ]

(Say: “He is Allah, One.”) and he was repeating over and over. So when morning came, the man went to the Prophet and mentioned that to him, and it was as though he was belittling it. The Prophet said,

«وَالَّذِي نَفْسِي بِيَدِهِ إِنَّهَا لَتَعْدِلُ ثُلُثَ الْقُرْآن»

(By He in Whose Hand is my soul, verily it is equivalent to a third of the Qur’an.) Abu Dawud and An-Nasa’i also recorded it. Another Hadith Al-Bukhari recorded from Abu Sa`id, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Messenger of Allah said to his Companions,

«أَيَعْجِزُ أَحَدُكُمْ أَنْ يَقْرَأَ ثُلُثَ الْقُرْآنِ فِي لَيْلَةٍ؟»

(Is one of you not able to recite a third of the Qur’an in a single night) This was something that was difficult for them and they said, “Which of us is able to do that, O Messenger of Allah” So he replied,

«اللهُ الْوَاحِدُ الصَّمَدُ ثُلُثُ الْقُرْآن»

(“Allah is the One, As-Samad” is a third of the Qur’an.) Al-Bukhari was alone in recording this Hadith. Another Hadith that its Recitation necessitates Admission into Paradise: Imam Malik bin Anas recorded from `Ubayd bin Hunayn that he heard Abu Hurayrah saying, “I went out with the Prophet and he heard a man reciting `Say: He is Allah, the One.’ So the Messenger of Allah said, «وَجَبَت» (It is obligatory.) I asked, `What is obligatory’ He replied, «الْجَنَّة» (Paradise.)” At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa’i also recorded it by way of Malik, and At-Tirmidhi said, “Hasan Sahih Gharib. We do not know of it except as a narration of Malik.” The Hadith in which the Prophet said,

«حُبُّكَ إِيَّاهَا أَدْخَلَكَ الْجَنَّة»

(Your love of it will cause you to enter Paradise.) has already been mentioned.

A Hadith about repeating this Surah: `Abdullah bin Imam Ahmad recorded from Mu`adh bin `Abdullah bin Khubayb, who reported that his father said, “We became thirsty and it had become dark while we were waiting for the Messenger of Allah to lead us in prayer. Then, when he came out he took me by my hand and said, «قُل» (Say.) Then he was silent. Then he said again, «قُل» (Say.) So I said, `What should I say’ He said,

(قُلْ هُوَ اللَّهُ أَحَدٌ ) وَالْمُعَوِّذَتَيْنِ حِينَ تُمْسِي وَحِينَ تُصْبِحُ ثَلَاثًا، تَكْفِكَ كُلَّ يَوْمٍ مَرَّتَيْن

(Say: “He is Allah, One,” and the two Surahs of Refuge (Al-Falaq and An-Nas) when you enter upon the evening and the morning three times (each). They will be sufficient for you two times every day.)” This Hadith was also recorded by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa’i. At-Tirmidhi said, “Hasan Sahih Gharib.” An-Nasa’i also recorded through another chain of narrators with the wording,

«يَكْفِكَ كُلَّ شَيْء» (They will suffice you against everything.)

Tafsir ibn Katheer – Surah al Ikhlas; http://tafsir.com/default.asp?sid=112&tid=59492

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s