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17. Surah Al-Isr' سورة الإسراء

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This Surah (Revealed) Meccan, except for verses 26, 33 [or 32], 57, and from 73 to the end of 80, which are Medinese; it consists of 111 verses and was revealed after [sūrat] al-Qasas.(Al-Isr)
 
Ayah   17:1   الأية الأولي
بِسْم ِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ
Ayah First   1   الأية الأولي
Tafseer
 
Glory be to Him an affirmation of [Gods] transcendence Who carried His servant, Muhammad (s), by night (laylan is in the accusative as an adverbial qualification; isrā means to travel by night; what is instructive about this mention [of laylan, by night] is that, through its being indefinite, there is an indication of the brevity of its duration) from the Sacred Mosque, that is, Mecca, to the Farthest Mosque, the Holy House [of Jerusalem], so called because of its distance from the former; the environs of which We have blessed, with fruits and rivers, that We might show him some of Our signs, the marvels of Our power. Indeed He is the Hearing, the Seeing, that is to say, the Knower of the Prophets (s) sayings and deeds. Thus He [God] was gracious to him by way of [carrying him on] the night journey, which comprised his encountering the [other] prophets, his ascension to heaven and the sight of the marvels of the [Divine] Realm and His communion, exalted be He, with him. For he [the Prophet] (s) said: I was brought al-Burāq, a white animal, larger than a donkey but smaller than a mule; it was able to place its hoof [back] towards its extremity and so I mounted it. It set off carrying me until I reached the Holy House [of Jerusalem]. [There] I fastened the animal to the ring where the prophets fasten [their animals]. I then went in and prayed two units inside it. As I came out, Gabriel came to me with a jug of wine and a jug of milk, and so I chose the milk. Gabriel said [to me], You have made the right choice [by choosing] the primordial nature (fitra). He [the Prophet] continued [the narration], We then ascended to the heaven of this world, whereat Gabriel asked to be let in. Someone asked, Who are you?. He replied, Gabriel, And who is with you?, Muhammad (s), he said. Has he been sent for?. Yes, he has been sent for. Then it was opened for us, and lo! Adam stood before me; he greeted me and prayed for well-being for me. We then ascended to the second heaven and Gabriel asked to be let in. Someone asked, Who are you?. He replied, Gabriel, And who is with you?, Muhammad (s), he said. Has he been called forth?. Yes, he has been called forth. And it was opened up for us, and lo! there were the two [maternal] cousins, John and Jesus. They greeted me and prayed for well-being for me. We then ascended to the third heaven and Gabriel asked to be let in. Someone asked, Who are you?. He replied, Gabriel, And who is with you?, Muhammad (s), he said. Has he been sent for? it was asked. Yes, he has been sent for. And it was opened up for us, and lo! there was Joseph standing before me, and indeed he had been given one half of all beauty! He greeted me and prayed for well-being for me. We then ascended to the fourth heaven and Gabriel asked to be let in. Someone asked, Who are you?. He replied, Gabriel, And who is with you?, Muhammad (s), he said. Has he been called forth?, it was asked. Yes, he has been called forth, he replied. And it was opened up for us, and lo! there before me was Enoch (Idrīs). He greeted me and prayed for well-being for me. We then ascended to the fifth heaven and Gabriel asked to be let in. Someone asked, Who are you?. He replied, Gabriel. And who is with you? it was asked, Muhammad (s), he replied. Has he been sent for?, it was said. Yes, he has been sent for, he replied. And it was opened up for us, and lo! there before me was Aaron. He greeted me and prayed for well-being for me. We then ascended to the sixth heaven and Gabriel asked to be let in. Someone asked, Who are you?. He replied, Gabriel; and who is with you?, Muhammad (s), he said. Has he been called forth?, it was asked. Yes, he has been called forth. And it was opened up for us, and lo! there before me was Moses. He greeted me and prayed for well-being for me. We then ascended to the seventh heaven and Gabriel asked to be let in. Someone asked, Who are you?. He replied, Gabriel, And who is with you?; Muhammad (s), he said. Has he been called forth?, it was asked. Yes, he has been called forth, he replied. And it was opened up for us, and lo! there before me was Abraham, leaning [seated] against the Frequented House (al-bayt al-mamūr), into which 70,000 angels enter every day never to return thereto. I was then taken to the Lote-Tree of the Boundary (sidrat al- 296 muntahā), and lo! its leaves resemble the ears of elephants, its fruits like pitchers [in size]. When some command of Gods enveloped it, it changed, and lo! none of Gods creation could describe it for all its beauty. He [the Prophet] continued: God then revealed to me what He revealed and prescribed for me fifty prayers each day and night. I then descended until I reached Moses and he said, What has your Lord prescribed for your community? I said, Fifty prayers each day and night. He said, Go back to your Lord and ask Him for an alleviation, for your community will not have the capacity for it: I have tried the Children of Israel and have experience of them [not being up to the task]. I then went back to my Lord and said, My Lord! Lighten that [prescription] for my community, and so He reduced it for me by five. I went back to Moses who asked me, What did you do?. I said to him, He has reduced it for me by five, to which he said, Your community will not have the capacity for this; so go back to your Lord and ask Him for an alleviation for your community. Thus I kept going back and forth between my Lord and Moses, with Him reducing it by five each time until He said, O Muhammad (s)! They shall be five prayers each day and night, every prayer will be worth [the reward of] ten [prayers]; that then makes fifty prayers. And whoever intends a good deed but does not perform it, I shall count it for him as one [done]; and if he performs it, I shall count it for him as ten; and whoever intends an evil deed, but does not perform it, it shall not be recorded against him; but if he performs it, it shall be recorded [only] as one evil deed. I then descended until I reached Moses. I informed him and he said, Go back to your Lord and ask Him for an alleviation for your community, because your community will not have the capacity for this; and I said, I have gone back to my Lord so many times that I am ashamed [to go again]. This [hadīth] is reported by the two Shaykhs [al-Bukhārī and Muslim]; but the wording [of this version] is that of [the report in the Sahīh of] Muslim. Al-Hākim [alNaysābūrī] reports in the Mustadrak by way of Ibn Abbās that he said, The Prophet (s) said, I did see my Lord, Mighty and Majestic.
 
Ayah   17:2   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
God, exalted be He, says: And We gave Moses the Scripture, the Torah, and made it a guidance for the Children of Israel [saying] that they should not choose beside Me any guardian, to whom they delegate their affairs (a variant reading [for yattakhidhū, they should [not] choose] is tattakhidhū, you should [not] choose, thus turning away [from the third person address], in which case [the particle] an, that, is extra and the saying is implicit).
 
Ayah   17:3   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
descendants of those whom We carried with Noah, in the Ark. Indeed he was a grateful servant, giving thanks to Us frequently, and offering praise in whichever state he found himself.
 
Ayah   17:4   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And We decreed, We revealed, to the Children of Israel in the Scripture, the Torah: You shall indeed work corruption in the land, the land of Syria, through acts of disobedience, twice and you shall indeed become great tyrants, you shall perpetrate grave injustice.
 
Ayah   17:5   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
So when the time for the first of the two [prophecies], the first of the two occasions for corruption, came, We roused against you servants of Ours of great might, men who are strong in war and assault, who ransacked, who came and went, seeking you out [through], [your] habitations, in the [very] midst of your homes, in order to slay you and take [others among] you captive, and it was a promise fulfilled. Their first act of corruption was their slaying of [the prophet] Zachariah. So Goliath and his army were roused against them, and they slew them and took their children captive and destroyed the Holy House [of Jerusalem].
 
Ayah   17:6   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Then We gave you back the turn, the [rule of the] state and victory, [to prevail] over them, one hundred years later, by having Goliath slain, and We aided you with children and wealth, and made you greater in number, in clan. 297
 
Ayah   17:7   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And We said: If you are virtuous, through [acts of] obedience, you are being virtuous to your own souls, since the reward thereof is for them [your souls]; and if you do evil, by way of [working] corruption, it is for them, your evildoing. So when the time, the occasion, for the other [prophecy] comes, We will raise them forth, that they might ravage you, make you grieve through [their] slaying and taking captive [of you], a grief that will be manifest on your faces, and that they might enter the Temple, the Holy House [of Jerusalem], and destroy it, just as they entered it, and destroyed it, the first time, and that they might destroy, lay waste, all that they conquered, [all that] they gained ascendancy over, utterly, with an utter wasting. They indeed wrought corruption a second time when they slew [the prophet] John. Thus Nebuchadnezzar was roused against them, and so he slew thousands of them and took their children captive and destroyed the Holy House [of Jerusalem].
 
Ayah   17:8   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And We said in the Scripture: It may be that your Lord will have mercy upon you, after the second time, if you were to repent; but if you revert, to [working] corruption, We [too] will revert, to punishment. And assuredly they did revert by denying the Prophet (s), and so he was given power over them, through the slaying of the [Banū] Qurayza, the expulsion of the [Banū] Nadīr and the exacting of the jizya-tax from them; and We have made Hell a dungeon for the disbelievers, a place of detention and a prison [for them].
 
Ayah   17:9   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Truly this Qurān guides to that, to that way, which is straightest, most upright and correct, and gives tidings to the believers who perform righteous deeds that there is a great reward for them.
 
Ayah   17:10   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And, it [this Qurān] informs, that those who do not believe in the Hereafter, We have prepared for them a painful chastisement, namely, the Fire.
 
Ayah   17:11   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And man prays for ill, against himself and his family when he is frustrated, as [avidly as] he prays for good. And mankind is ever hasty, to pray against himself, without contemplating the consequence thereof.
 
Ayah   17:12   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And We made the night and the day two signs, [both] indicators of Our power. Then We effaced the sign of the night, extinguishing its light with darkness, so that you might repose therein (the annexation [āyatalayli, the sign of the night, is explicative), and made the sign of the day sight-giving, in other words, one in which it is possible to see because of the light; that you may seek, therein, bounty from your Lord, by earning [your livelihood], and that you may know, by both [day and night], the number of years and the reckoning, of the times [of the day], and everything, that might be needed, We have detailed very distinctly, We have explained clearly.
 
Ayah   17:13   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And We have attached every persons omen his deeds for him to carry, upon his neck this [site] is singled out for mention because fastening [something] to it is [much] more severe; Mujāhid [b. Jabr alMakkī] said, There is not a child born but it has a leaf around its neck in which it is decreed [that the child will be either] fortunate or damned and We shall bring forth for him, on the Day of Resurrection, a book, in which his deeds are recorded [and], which he will find wide open (yalqāhu manshūran: both are adjectival qualifications of kitāban, a book). 298
 
Ayah   17:14   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And it will be said to him: Read your book! This day your soul suffices as your own reckoner.
 
Ayah   17:15   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Whoever is guided, is guided only to [the good of] his own soul, because the reward of his guidance will be for him; and whoever goes astray, goes astray only to its [his souls] detriment, because the sin thereof will be held against it. No burdened, [no] sinful, soul shall bear the burden of another, soul. And We never chastise, anyone, until We have sent a messenger, to make clear to him that which is his obligation.
 
Ayah   17:16   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And when We desire to destroy a town We command its affluent ones, those [inhabitants] of its who enjoy the graces [of God], meaning its leaders, [We command them] to obedience, by the tongue of Our messengers; but they fall into immorality therein, rebelling against Our command, and so the Word is justified concerning it, that it should be chastised, and We destroy it utterly, We annihilate it by annihilating its inhabitants and leaving it in ruins.
 
Ayah   17:17   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
How many in other words, many generations, communities, We have destroyed since Noah! And your Lord suffices as One Informed and Beholder of the sins of His servants, Knower of the hidden and manifest aspects of these [sins] (bi-rabbika, your Lord, is semantically connected to bi-dhunūb, of the sins).
 
Ayah   17:18   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Whoever desires, through his deeds, the hasty world, that is, [the life of] this world, We hasten for him therein whatever We will, for whom We please, [such] a hastening, (li-man nurīd, for whom We please, is a substitute for lahu, for him, with the repetition of the genitive particle [li-]). Then We appoint for him, in the Hereafter, Hell, to which he will be exposed, [to which] he will be admitted, condemned, blameful, and rejected, banished from [Gods] mercy.
 
Ayah   17:19   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And whoever desires the Hereafter and strives for it with the necessary effort, [that is] he performs the deeds worthy of it, being a believer (wa-huwa muminun is a circumstantial qualifier) for such their effort will find favour, with God, that is, [their effort will be] accepted and rewarded.
 
Ayah   17:20   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Each, of the two parties, We supply, We give, [to] these and [to] those (hāūlā wa-hāūlā is a substitute [for kullan, each) from (min is semantically connected to numiddu, We supply) from your Lords bounty, in this world. And your Lords bounty, therein, is not confined, [it is not] forbidden to anyone.
 
Ayah   17:21   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
See how We have given preference to some of them over others, in provision and renown. And truly the Hereafter is greater, grander, in degrees and greater in preferment, to this world, and so one ought to devote ones attention to it [the Hereafter], to the exclusion of the other.
 
Ayah   17:22   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Do not set up another god besides God, or you will sit blameworthy, forsaken, with no one to assist you.
 
Ayah   17:23   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
299 And your Lord has decreed, He has commanded, that you worship none save Him, and, that you show, kindness to parents, by being dutiful to them. If they should reach old age with you, one of them (ahaduhumā is the subject [of the verb]) or both (a variant reading [for yablughanna] has yablughān, both [should] reach, in which case ahaduhumā would be substituting for the [dual indicator] alif [of yablughān]) then do not say to them Fie (read uffan or uffin, uffa or uffi, a verbal noun meaning tabban, perish! or qubhan, evil!) nor repulse them, but speak to them gracious words, fair and gentle [words].
 
Ayah   17:24   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And lower to them the wing of humility, show them your submissive side, out of mercy, that is, on account of your affection for them, and say, My Lord, have mercy on them, just as they, had mercy on me when [they], reared me when I was little.
 
Ayah   17:25   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Your Lord knows best what is in your hearts, [in the way] of what may be concealed of dutifulness or disobedience [to parents]. If you are righteous, obedient to God, then truly, to those who are penitent, those who return to obedience of Him, He is Forgiving, of any slip that might have issued on their part regarding their duty to the parents, so long as they do not conceal [within themselves] any disrespect [towards them].
 
Ayah   17:26   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And give the kinsman his due, of dutifulness and kindness, and the needy and the traveller [as well]; and do not squander, by expending for [any purpose] other than in obedience to God.
 
Ayah   17:27   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Indeed squanderers are brothers of devils, that is, they follow their way, and the Devil was ever ungrateful to his Lord, extremely rejective of His graces: likewise his brother the squanderer.
 
Ayah   17:28   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
But if you [have to] overlook them, that is, the kinsmen and the others mentioned, and do not give to them, seeking mercy from your Lord, [a mercy] which you expect [in the future], that is, [you do not give to them] because of a request for provision which you are waiting to come to you [from your Lord], before you give to them, then speak to them gentle words, pleasant and reasonable [words], promising them that you will give to them when the provision [from God] arrives.
 
Ayah   17:29   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And do not keep your hand chained to your neck, in other words, do not withhold it completely from expending, nor open it, in order to expend, completely, or you will sit blameworthy this refers to the first case and denuded, cut off, having nothing this refers to the latter case.
 
Ayah   17:30   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Truly your Lord expands provision, He makes it abundant, for whomever He will and He straitens, He restricts it for whomever He will. Indeed He is ever Aware and Seer of His servants, Knower of what they hide and what they manifest, giving them provision in accordance with their welfare.
 
Ayah   17:31   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And do not slay your children, by burying them alive, fearing penury, poverty. We shall provide for them and for you. Slaying them is truly a great sin. 300
 
Ayah   17:32   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And do not come [anywhere] near fornication this [form of expressing it] is more effective than [saying] Do not commit it. It is indeed an indecency, an abomination, and, it is, an evil way.
 
Ayah   17:33   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And do not slay the soul [whose life] God has made inviolable, except with due cause. Whoever is slain wrongfully, We have certainly given his heir, the one inheriting from him, a warrant, a sanction [to retaliate] against the slayer; but let him not commit excess, [let him not] overstep the bounds, in slaying, by slaying other than the killer [of the one slain], or by other than that [instrument] with which he [the slain] was killed; for he is supported [by the Law].
 
Ayah   17:34   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And do not come [anywhere] near an orphans property, except in the fairest manner until he comes of age. And fulfil the covenant, should you make a covenant with God or with people [in general]. Indeed the covenant will be enquired into.
 
Ayah   17:35   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And give full measure, complete it, when you measure, and weigh with a right balance, [with] an even balance: that is better and fairer in return.
 
Ayah   17:36   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And do not pursue that of which you have no knowledge. Indeed the hearing and the sight and the heart of each of these it will be asked, of that person what he did with them.
 
Ayah   17:37   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And do not walk in the earth exultantly, that is, exultant with pride and conceit. Indeed you will not rend the earth, [you will not] pierce it and reach its depths with your pride, nor attain the mountains in height: the meaning is that you shall never attain such ends, so how can you be so arrogant?
 
Ayah   17:38   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
All of that, [which has been] mentioned the evil of it is hateful in the sight of your Lord.
 
Ayah   17:39   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
This is [part] of the wisdom, the admonition, which your Lord has revealed to you, O Muhammad (s). And do not set up with God any other god, or you will be cast into Hell, blameworthy, abandoned, banished from Gods mercy.
 
Ayah   17:40   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Has your Lord then preferred you, has He distinguished you [exclusively], O Meccans, with sons and chosen for Himself females from among the angels?, as daughters for Himself, in the way that you [are wont to] claim. Truly, by [saying] this, you are speaking a monstrous word!
 
Ayah   17:41   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And verily We have dispensed, We have elucidated, in this Qurān, similitudes, promises [of reward] and threats [of retribution], so that they may remember, [that they may] be admonished, but it, that 301 [elucidation], only increases them in aversion, to the Truth.
 
Ayah   17:42   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say, to them: If there were with Him, that is, with God, [other] gods, as they say, they would, in that case, have sought against the Lord of the Throne, that is, [against] God, some path, some way, in order to fight Him [off].
 
Ayah   17:43   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Glory be to Him an affirmation of His transcendence and exalted be He above what they say, in the way of [His having] associates, greatly!
 
Ayah   17:44   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
The seven heavens and the earth and all that is therein proclaim His praise, [they] affirm His transcendence. And there is not a thing, among things created, but proclaims, enwrapped [in], His praise, in other words, [everything] says subhānaLlāh wa-bi-hamdihi, Glory and praise be to God; but you do not understand their glorification, because it is not [proclaimed] in your language. Lo! He is Forbearing, Forgiving, for He does not hasten [to bring about] your punishment.
 
Ayah   17:45   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And when you recite the Qurān, We place between you and those who do not believe in the Hereafter a hidden barrier, that is, one that hides you from them, so that they cannot see you this was revealed regarding those who wanted to assassinate him (s) [the Prophet].
 
Ayah   17:46   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And We place upon their hearts veils, covers, lest they should understand it, lest they should understand the Qurān, in other words, and so [in this way] they do not understand it, and in their ears a deafness, a heaviness, thus they cannot hear it. And when you mention your Lord alone in the Qurān, they turn their backs in aversion, to it.
 
Ayah   17:47   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
We know best what they listen to, the reason for [which they listen to] it, in order to mock [it], when they listen to you, [to] your recital, and when they are in secret counsel, holding secret talks among themselves, in other words, when they talk, when (idh substitutes for the preceding idh, when) the evildoers say, in their secret conversation: You are only following a man bewitched, one duped, his mind overcome.
 
Ayah   17:48   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
God, exalted be He, says: Look how they strike similitudes for you, such as [your being] bewitched, a soothsayer or a poet, and they go astray, thereby from [the path of] guidance, and cannot find a way, a path to it!
 
Ayah   17:49   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And they say, in denial of the Resurrection: What, when we are bones and fragments, shall we really be raised up in a new creation?
 
Ayah   17:50   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say, to them: Be stones or iron, 302
 
Ayah   17:51   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
or some creation yet greater in your breasts, [something yet] far less able to accept life, aside from bones and fragments, a spirit will undoubtedly be made to exist in you [to bring you back to life]. They will then say, Who shall bring us back?, to life. Say: He Who originated you, created you, the first time, when you had not been anything [in existence], because the One Who is able to initiate [creation] is also able to repeat [it], indeed, this [repetition] is easier [than the initiation]. Then they will shake their heads at you, stupefied, and they will say, mockingly: When will it be?, that is, the Resurrection. Say: Maybe it is near!
 
Ayah   17:52   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
The day He calls you, [the day] He calls out to you from your graves by the tongue of [the archangel] Isrāfīl, you will respond, you will answer His call from your graves, with His praise, by His command it is also said to mean [that you will respond] and praise be to Him and you will think that you have remained, in this world, only a little, because of the terror of what you will see [on that day].
 
Ayah   17:53   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And tell My servants, the believers, to speak, to disbelievers, that, word, which is finer. For Satan indeed incites ill feeling, he makes trouble, between them, and Satan is indeed mans manifest enemy, his enmity is evident. The finer word is [to say] this:
 
Ayah   17:54   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Your Lord knows you best. If He will, He will have mercy on you, by way of [granting you] repentance and faith, or, if He will, for you to be chastised, He will chastise you, by having you die in disbelief. And We did not send you to be a guardian over them, and so compel them to [embrace] faith this was [revealed] before the command to fight [them].
 
Ayah   17:55   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And your Lord knows best all who are in the heavens and the earth, thus endowing them [each one] with what He will, according to the measure of their states. And verily We have preferred some of the prophets above others, endowing each of them with a particular merit: Moses, with being spoken to; Abraham, with Friendship; and Muhammad (s), with the Night Journey; and We gave David the Psalms.
 
Ayah   17:56   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say, to them: Call on those whom you assumed, to be gods, besides Him, such as the angels, Jesus and Ezra (Uzayr); yet they have no power to rid you of misfortune nor to transfer, it to [persons] other than you.
 
Ayah   17:57   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Those whom they call, gods, [they themselves] seek a means to their Lord, [they seek] nearness, by way of obedience, which of them (ayyuhum substitutes for the [third person indicator] wāw of [the verb] yabtaghūna, they seek) in other words, [even] he seeks it [this nearness] the one who, is nearer, to Him, so how [much more] is it [sought] in the case of others?; and they hope for His mercy and fear His chastisement, just like others, so how can you call them gods? Truly your Lords chastisement is a thing to beware of.
 
Ayah   17:58   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
There is not a town its inhabitants are the ones meant but We shall destroy it before the Day of Resurrection, through death, or chastise it with terrible chastisement, by killing [its inhabitants] or otherwise. That has been inscribed in the Book, the Preserved Tablet (al-lawh al-mahfūz). 303
 
Ayah   17:59   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Nothing prevented Us from sending the signs, requested by the people of Mecca, except that the ancients denied them, when We sent such [signs] and so We destroyed them: if We were to send them to these [people of Mecca], they would deny them and would thus deserve destruction. However, We have judged that they be given respite so that the mission of Muhammad (s) be completed. And We gave Thamūd the she-camel as, a sign [that was], apparent, [one that was] clear and evident, but they wronged, they disbelieved, it, and were therefore destroyed. And We do not send signs, miracles, except for deterrence, to servants, so that they might believe.
 
Ayah   17:60   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And, remember, when We said to you, Truly your Lord encompasses mankind, in knowledge and power [over them], such that they are within His grasp: so deliver the Message to them and do not fear anyone, because God will protect you from them. And We did not appoint the vision that We showed you, before your very eyes, during the Night Journey, except as a test for people, [for] the people of Mecca since they denied it and some of them [even] apostatised when he [the Prophet] informed them of it and [likewise] the tree cursed in the Qurān, namely, the [tree called] Zaqqūm [Q.37:62ff] that issues from the very root of the Blazing Fire [of Hell]; We made it a test for them, because they said, Fire consumes trees, so how can it cause it [the Zaqqūm tree] to issue forth?. And We [seek to] deter them, with it, but it, Our deterrence, only increases them in gross insolence.
 
Ayah   17:61   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And, mention, when We said to the angels, Prostrate yourselves before Adam, a prostration of salutation, by inclining oneself, and so they [all] prostrated themselves, except Iblīs: he said, Shall I prostrate myself before one whom You have created from clay? (tīnan, is in the accusative because the operator of the oblique [min, of] has been omitted, in other words [it would normally be] min tīnin).
 
Ayah   17:62   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Said he, Do You see in other words, inform me: this one whom You have honoured, [whom] You have preferred, above me?, by commanding that prostration should be made before him, when I am better than him. You created me from fire, while him You created from clay [Q. 7:12]. If (la-in: the lām is for oaths) You defer me to the Day of Resurrection I shall verily eradicate his seed, by leading them astray, [all] save a few, of them, of those whom You have given [divine] protection.
 
Ayah   17:63   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Said He, exalted be He, to him [Iblīs]: Begone, deferred to the time of the First Blast [of the Trumpet]. Whoever of them follows you indeed Hell shall be your requital, [both] yours and theirs, a requital [that is indeed] ample, sufficient and complete.
 
Ayah   17:64   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And tempt, dupe, whomever of them you can with your voice, by your calling them with songs and pipes and with every invitation to [acts of] disobedience; and rally, incite, against them your cavalry and your infantry, namely, those who ride and walk in acts of disobedience, and share with them in wealth, that is illicit, such as usury and extortion, and children, from [acts of] adultery, and make promises to them, to the effect that there will not be any resurrection or requital. And Satan promises them, thereby, nothing but delusion, falsehood.
 
Ayah   17:65   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Truly as for My servants, the believers, you shall have no warrant, [no] sway or ability. And Your Lord 304 suffices as a guardian, as a protector for them against you.
 
Ayah   17:66   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Your Lord is He Who drives for you the ships upon the sea that you may seek of His bounty, exalted be He, through [engaging in] commerce. Truly He is ever Merciful towards you, by disposing these [ships] for you.
 
Ayah   17:67   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And when distress, difficulty, befalls you at sea, [such as] fear of drowning, those whom you [are wont to] invoke are no longer present, [those whom] you [are wont to] worship of gods [are no longer present], and so you do not call on them except Him, exalted be He, for on Him alone you do call, because you are suffering a distress which only He can remove. But when He delivers you, from drowning and brings you, to land, you are rejective, of [Gods] Oneness, for man is ever ungrateful, [ever] denying [Gods] graces.
 
Ayah   17:68   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Do you feel secure that He will not cause a side of the earth, in other words, the land, to swallow you up, as [He did] with Korah (Qārūn), or unleash upon you a squall of pebbles? that is, hurl a shower of stones upon you, as [He did] with the people of Lot. Then you will not find for yourselves any guardian, any protector from Him.
 
Ayah   17:69   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Or do you feel secure that He will not return you to it, that is, [to] the sea, a second time and unleash upon you a shattering gale, that is, a violent wind that shatters everything in its path, to destroy your ship, and drown you for your ungratefulness? And then you will not find for yourselves any redresser of this against Us, [any] helper or advocate to demand restitution from Us for what We [will] have done to you.
 
Ayah   17:70   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And verily We have honoured, We have preferred, the Children of Adam, [above other creation], by [giving them] knowledge, speech and [their being] a creation of even proportions amongst other things, including their [means of] purification after death, and carried them over land, on animal-back, and sea, in ships, and provided them with good things and We have preferred them above many of those whom We created, such as livestock and wild animals, with a marked preferment (the min [of mimman, of those whom] has the sense of mā, of what, or something close to it, and includes the angels, the purpose being to give preference to the [angelic] genus; there is no requirement to give [explicit] preference to the individuals [of this category of being], since they [angels] are superior to mankind, excepting the prophets).
 
Ayah   17:71   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Mention, the day when We shall summon all men with their leader, their prophet, and it will be said, O community of so-and-so; or [it bi-imāmihim means] with the record of their deeds, in which case it will be said, O one of good [deeds], O one of evil [deeds]!: this is [on] the Day of Resurrection. And whoever, from among them, is given his book in his right hand, these being the fortunate, those possessors of understanding in this world those will read their book, and they will not be wronged, they will [not] be diminished of their deeds, [so much as] a single date-thread.
 
Ayah   17:72   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And whoever has been in this, that is, [in] this world, blind, to the truth, will be blind in the Hereafter, to the path of salvation and the reciting of the Qurān, and [even] further astray from the [right] way, more removed from the road [that leads] to it.
 
Ayah   17:73   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
305 The following was revealed regarding the [tribe of] Thaqīf, for they had asked him [the Prophet] (s) to declare their valley inviolable and implored him [to grant them this request]: And indeed (wa-in, [the particle in is] softened) they were about to, they nearly did, beguile you away from that which We revealed to you, so that you might invent against Us [something] other than that; and then, had you done that, they would have taken you as a friend.
 
Ayah   17:74   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And if We had not made you [stand] firm, upon the Truth, by way of [divine] protection (isma), certainly you might have, you nearly, inclined to them a little, because of the extent of their deception and their persistence. This [statement] is explicit about the fact that the Prophet (s) neither inclined nor came close to doing so.
 
Ayah   17:75   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Then, had you inclined, We would have surely made you taste a double, chastisement, in life and a double, chastisement, upon death, in other words, twice the chastisement that any other person would receive in this world and the Hereafter. Then you would not have found for yourself any helper against Us, [anyone] to shield [you] from it.
 
Ayah   17:76   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
When the Jews said to him, If you are a prophet, then make your way to Syria, for it is the land of prophets, the following was revealed: And indeed (wa-in, [the particle in is] softened) they were about to provoke you out of the land, the land of Medina, to expel you from it, but then, had they expelled you, they would not have remained after you, in it, except a little [while], after which they would have been destroyed.
 
Ayah   17:77   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
[That is] the way in the case of those whom We have sent from among Our messengers before you, that is to say, [that is] Our way [of dealing] with them [their enemies], destroying those who expel them [Our messengers]. And as regards Our [established] way you will not find any change, any alternative [manner].
 
Ayah   17:78   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Establish prayer from the suns decline, that is, from after midday, until the dark of night, [until] its darkness has fallen, in other words, [perform prayers] at noon, in the afternoon, at sunset and at night, and the recital [of the Qurān] at dawn, the morning prayer. Verily the dawn recital is ever witnessed, it is witnessed by the angels of the night and the angels of the day.
 
Ayah   17:79   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And for a part of the night, keep vigil, perform prayer, therewith, with the Qurān, as a supererogatory [devotion] for you, as an extra obligation for you to the exclusion of your community, or [it means] as extra merit [for you] on top of the [other] obligatory prayers. It may be that your Lord will raise you to, establish you, in the Hereafter, in, a praiseworthy station, one for which the first and last [of mankind] will praise you and this is the station of intercession [which will take place] during [the passing of] the Final Judgement.
 
Ayah   17:80   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And say: My Lord, make me enter, Medina, with a veritable entrance, an entrance that is satisfying, one in which I do not see what I dislike, and bring me out, of Mecca, with a veritable departure, a departure such that my heart will not [care to] turn back to look at it [yearningly]. And grant me from Yourself a favourable authority, [grant me] strength with which You render me victorious over Your enemies. 306
 
Ayah   17:81   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And say, upon your entry into Mecca: The Truth, Islam, has come and falsehood has vanished away, disbelief has come to nothing. Truly falsehood is ever bound to vanish, [ever bound] to fade away and disappear. Indeed the Prophet (s) entered it [Mecca] and there were 360 idols [which had been placed] around the [Sacred] House [sc. the Kaba]. He [the Prophet] then set about thrusting at them with a stick he was carrying, saying those [words] until they had [all] been toppled, as reported by the two Shaykhs [Bukhārī and Muslim].
 
Ayah   17:82   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And We reveal of (min [here] is explicative) the Qurān that which is a cure, from error, and a mercy for believers, thereby; though it only increases the evildoers, the disbelievers, in loss, because of their disbelief in it.
 
Ayah   17:83   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And when We are gracious to man, the disbelieving [man], he is disregardful, of giving thanks, and turns aside, turning his face away in arrogance; but when an ill, such as poverty or hardship, befalls him, he is in despair, despondent of Gods mercy.
 
Ayah   17:84   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say: Everyone, [including] us and you, acts according to his [own] character, his [own] manner [of conduct], and your Lord knows best who is better guided as to the way, [as to] the path [he follows], and He will reward him [accordingly].
 
Ayah   17:85   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And they will question you, that is, the Jews, concerning the Spirit, from which the body receives life. Say, to them: The Spirit is of the command of my Lord, that is, [it belongs to] His knowledge, about which you know not. And of knowledge you have not been given except a little, relative to His knowledge, exalted be He.
 
Ayah   17:86   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And if (la-in, the lām is for oaths) We willed We could take away what We have revealed to you, in other words, [take away] the Qurān, by erasing it from the hearts [of men] and from the written copies. Then you would not find in respect thereof any guardian for yourself against Us;
 
Ayah   17:87   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
[it is] only but We have let it remain as a mercy from your Lord. Truly His favour to you is ever great, tremendous, for He has revealed to you and granted you the praiseworthy station as well as other [kinds of] merit.
 
Ayah   17:88   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say: Verily, should mankind and jinn come together to produce the like of this Qurān, [the like thereof] in terms of clarity and rhetorical excellence, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed one another, [even if one was] an assistant [of the other]. This [verse] was revealed as a refutation of their statement: If we wish we can speak the like of this [Q. 8:31].
 
Ayah   17:89   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
307 And verily We have dispensed, explained, for people in this Qurān every [kind of] similitude (min kulli mathalin, [this] is an adjectival qualification of an omitted clause, in other words, [We have dispensed] a similitude from every kind of similitude), that they might be admonished; but most people, that is, the people of Mecca, insist on disbelieving, on denying the truth.
 
Ayah   17:90   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And they say (wa-qālū is a supplement to abā [illā], insist on), We will not believe you until you make gush forth for us from the ground a spring, from which water issues forth;
 
Ayah   17:91   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
or until you [come to] have a garden, an orchard, of date-palms and vines, and cause streams to gush forth therein, in the midst of these, abundantly;
 
Ayah   17:92   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
or until you cause the heaven to fall upon us, as you assert, in pieces, or bring God and the angels [right] in front [of us], face to face [with us], before [our] very eyes, so that we might see them;
 
Ayah   17:93   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
or until you [come to] have a house adorned with gold, or ascend into the heaven, upon a ladder, and [even then] we will not believe your ascension, if you were to ascend into it, until you bring down for us, therefrom, a book, in which is [confirmed] your truthfulness, that we may read. Say, to them: Glory be to my Lord this is a statement of amazement Am I anything but a human, a messenger [from God]?, in other words, [I am] like all [other] messengers, for they never brought [any] signs except by Gods leave.
 
Ayah   17:94   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And nothing prevented mankind from believing when guidance came to them, but that they said, that is, [except] their saying in denial: Has God sent a human as a messenger [from Him]?, instead of sending an angel.
 
Ayah   17:95   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say, to them: Had there been in the earth, instead of humans, angels, walking [and living] secure, We would have sent down to them from the heaven an angel as Messenger, for when a messenger is sent to a people he is [always] of their kind, so that they are able to speak to him and understand from him [his message].
 
Ayah   17:96   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say: God suffices as a witness between me and you, of my sincerity. Truly He is Aware, Seer of His servants, Knower of what they hide and what they manifest.
 
Ayah   17:97   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And he whom God guides is rightly guided, and he whom He sends astray you will not find for them [any] guardians, to guide them, besides Him. And We shall assemble them on the Day of Resurrection, walking, on their faces, blind, dumb, and deaf; their abode shall be Hell whenever it abates, [whenever] its flames subside, We shall intensify for them the blaze, the flame and [its] burning.
 
Ayah   17:98   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
That is their requital because they disbelieved Our signs and said, in denial of the Resurrection: What, when 308 we are bones and fragments, shall we really be raised in a new creation?
 
Ayah   17:99   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Have they not seen, realised, that God, [He] Who created the heavens and the earth, with all their immensity, has the power to create the like of them?, that is, [the like of] these human beings, [especially] given their smallness? He has appointed for them a term, until [the time for their] death and resurrection, whereof is no doubt; yet the wrongdoers insist on disbelief, on denial of such [a term].
 
Ayah   17:100   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say, to them: If you possessed the treasuries of my Lords mercy, [those treasuries] of provision and rain, you would surely withhold [them], [you would] stint, for fear of spending, fearing that they would be depleted if [one] spent [from them] and [that] you would then become impoverished; and man is ever niggardly.
 
Ayah   17:101   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And verily We gave Moses nine manifest signs, clear [signs], namely, [those of] the hand, the staff, the flood, the locusts, the lice, the frogs, the blood and the obliteration [of their possessions, cf. Q. 10:88], the years [of dearth] and scarcity of fruits [cf. Q. 7:130]. Ask, O Muhammad (s), the Children of Israel, about this (a [rhetorical] question meant as an affirmation for the idolaters of your sincerity; or [it means that] We said to him [Muhammad, s], Ask; a variant reading has the past tense [fa-sāala, and he asked]), when he came to them, Pharaoh said to him, O Moses, I truly think that you are bewitched, duped, your mind deceived.
 
Ayah   17:102   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
He [Moses] said, Indeed you know that none revealed these, signs, except the Lord of the heavens and the earth, as proofs, lessons; however, you are being stubborn (a variant reading [for alimta, you know] has alimtu [I know]); and I truly think that you, O Pharaoh, are doomed, [that you] will be destroyed or [it, mathbūran, means that Pharaoh has been] turned away from [all deeds that are] good.
 
Ayah   17:103   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And he, Pharaoh, desired to scare them, to expel Moses and his people, from the land, the land of Egypt; so We drowned him and those with him, all together.
 
Ayah   17:104   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And after him We said to the Children of Israel, Dwell in the land; but when the promise of the Hereafter, namely, the Hour, comes to pass, We shall bring you [gathered] in mixed company, all together, you and them.
 
Ayah   17:105   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
With the truth have We revealed it, that is, the Qurān, and with the truth, it comprises, has it been revealed, in the way it has, unaffected by any alterations; and We have not sent you, O Muhammad (s), except as a bearer of good tidings, of Paradise, for those who believe, and as a warner, of the Fire, for those who disbelieve.
 
Ayah   17:106   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And [it is] a Qurān (qurānan is in the accusative because of the verb governing it [which is the following]) that We have divided, that We have revealed in portions over 20 or 23 years, that you may recite it to mankind at intervals, gradually and with deliberateness so that they [are able to] comprehend it, and We 309 have revealed it by [successive] revelation, one part after another, according to what is best [for mankind].
 
Ayah   17:107   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
Say, to the disbelievers of Mecca, Believe in it or do not believe, as a threat to them; indeed those who were given knowledge before it, before its revelation, namely, the believers from among the People of the Scripture, when it is recited to them, fall down in prostration on their faces,
 
Ayah   17:108   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
and say, Glory be to our Lord, exalting Him above [the claim] that [His] promise [of sending a prophet] had not been fulfilled. Indeed (in, softened) Our Lords promise, of its [the Qurāns] revelation and the sending of the Prophet (s), is bound to be fulfilled.
 
Ayah   17:109   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And they fall down on their faces, weeping (yabkūna is a supplement [to yakhirrūna, they fall down] also containing an adjectival qualification [of those falling down]); and it, the Qurān, increases them in humility, in humbleness before God.
 
Ayah   17:110   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
The Prophet (s) would often say, O God, O Compassionate One. So they said, He [Muhammad, s] forbids us to worship more than one god, and yet he calls upon another [god] together with Him [God]. The following was then revealed: Say, to them: Invoke God or invoke the Compassionate One, that is to say, invoke Him by either of these [Names] or call upon Him by saying, O God! O Compassionate One!, whichever (ayyan is conditional; mā is extra), in other words, whichever of these two [Names], you invoke, is beautiful this [predicate, beautiful] is indicated by the following [statement]), to Him, to the One called by these two [Names], belong the Most Beautiful Names, these two [Names] being from among them; and they [the other Names] are [the following] as [mentioned] in hadīth: God, there is no god except Him, the Compassionate, the Merciful, the King, the Holy, the Peace, the Securer, the Controller, the Mighty, the Compeller, the Sublime, the Creator, the Maker [out of nothing], the Fashioner, the [ever] Forgiving, the Almighty, the Bestower, the Provider, the Deliverer, the Knower, the Seizer, the Extender, the Lowerer, the Raiser, the Glorifier, the Abaser, the Hearer, the Seer, the Arbiter, the Just, the Subtle, the Aware, the Forbearing, the Tremendous, the Forgiver, the Thankful, the High, the Great, the Preserver, the Conserver, the Reckoner, the Majestic, the Generous, the Watcher, the Responsive, the Embracing, the Wise, the Loving, the Glorious, the Resurrector, the Witnessing, the Truth, the Guardian, the Strong, the Firm, the Patron, the Praiseworthy, the Numberer, the Initiator, the Restorer, the Life-giver, the Death-maker, the Living, the Eternal Sustainer, the Originator, the Magnificent, the One, the Single, the Everlasting Refuge, the Powerful, the Omnipotent, the Advancer, the Deferrer, the First, the Last, the Outward, the Inward, the Ruler, Exalted, the Benign, the Relenting, the Avenger, the Pardoning, the Gentle, Master of the Kingdom, One of Majesty and Munificence, the Equitable, the Gatherer, the Independent, the Availing, the Restrainer, the Harming, the Benefactor, the Light, the Guiding, the Innovator, the Enduring, the Inheritor, the Reasonable, the Patient, as reported by al-Tirmidhī. God, exalted be He, says: And do not be loud in your prayer, when you recite [the Qurān] therein, lest the idolaters hear you and curse you, as well as the Qurān and the One Who has revealed it; nor be silent, do [not] murmur, therein, so that your companions might [be able to hear it and] benefit [therefrom]; but seek between that, loudness and silence, a, middle, way.
 
Ayah   17:111   الأية
 
Tafseer
 
And say: Praise be to God, Who has neither taken a son, nor has He any partner in sovereignty, in divineness, nor has He [taken] any ally, to assist Him, out of, because of [any], weakness, that is to say, He would never become weak and thus need an assistant. And magnify Him with magnifications [worthy of Him], extol Him with a perfect extolling above that He should have taken a son or a partner, and [above] any weakness and [above] all that does not befit Him. The arrangement whereby praise is [invoked] together with this [statement] is meant to indicate that He is the One worthy of all praise, because of the 310 perfection of His Essence and the fact that He alones possesses those attributes of His. Imam Ahmad [b. Hanbal] relates in his Musnad [by way of a report] from Muādh al-Juhanī [who heard it] from the Messenger of God (s), who used to say, The glory verse [in the Qurān] is: Praise be to God, Who has neither taken a son, nor has He any partner in sovereignty to the end [of the above-mentioned sūra, 17:111], and God, exalted be He, knows best. The author of this [commentary] says, This [last commentary] constitutes the end of my complement to the commentary on the Noble Qurān composed by the inquisitive scholar, the shaykh, Imam Jalāl al-Dīn alMahallī al-Shāfiī, may God be pleased with him. I have expended every effort in it and reflected throughout it exhaustively, [especially] in those precious things that I have deemed, God willing, to be profitable. I composed it [this commentary] in the same length of time appointed for the one spoken to by God [sc. Moses] and I have made it a means to attaining the Gardens of Bliss. It [this commentary] actually draws on the work which it complements, relying and depending on it for [an understanding of] those allegorical verses. May God have mercy on one who examines it with impartiality, chances upon an error and informs me of it. As I have said: I praise God, my Lord, for He guided me in what I have expressed despite my incapacity and weakness; for who [other than God] is there to avert me from error and who is there to accept from me even a single letter. In fact, it never occurred to me to embark upon such [a task], knowing that I was incapable of delving into such issues. Perhaps God will make it of ample profit [to others] and through it open sealed hearts, blinded eyes and deaf ears. I have the impression that I am before those [sort of readers] who would prefer works of prolixity, refraining from [referring to] this complementary work, rejecting it outright, tending to obvious obstinacy [regarding it], without addressing its intricacies with any understanding: And whoever is blind in this world shall be blind in the Hereafter [Q. 17:72]. May God thereby provide us with a [way of] guidance to the path of truth, with success, an awareness of the subtle intricacies of His words and with an ascertainment. May He thereby also make us with those to whom God has been gracious from among the prophets and the truthful and the martyrs and the righteous and excellent companions are they! [Q. 4:69]. He [Jalāl al-Dīn al-Suyūtī] completed the composition of this [work] on Sunday, 10th of Shawwāl, in the year 870 (AH)
 
Ayah   1465 AD], having commenced it on the first Wednesday of Ramadān of the same year. He completed the fair copy [of this work] on Wednesday, 6th of Safar in the year 871 (AH)
 
Ayah   1466 AD], and God knows best. Shaykh Shams al-Dīn Muhammad b. Abī Bakr al-Khatīb al-Tūkhī said: my friend the erudite shaykh Kamāl al-Dīn al-Mahallī, brother of the above-mentioned shaykh of ours, shaykh Jalāl al-Dīn alMahallī, may God have mercy on both of them, that he saw his brother, the above-mentioned shaykh Jalāl al-Dīn, in his dream: before him stood our friend the inquiring erudite scholar shaykh Jalāl al-Dīn al-Suyūtī, compiler of this complement. He [Mahallī] had this complement in his hand and, perusing it, he was saying to its above-mentioned compiler [Suyūtī], Which of the two is better, my composition or yours?. He [Suyūtī] said, Mine. He [Mahallī] then said, But look at this , and he showed him parts of it, politely pointing out to him his objections thereto. Each time he [Mahallī] brought something up, the compiler of this complement [Suyūtī] would respond to him, while shaykh [Mahallī] would smile and laugh. Our shaykh, the imam, the erudite scholar Jalāl al-Dīn Abd al-Rahmān b. Abī Bakr al-Suyūtī, compiler of this complement said: What I believe, and what I am absolutely certain of, is that the part composed by shaykh Jalāl al-Dīn al-Mahallī, may God have mercy on him, in his section [of the commentary] is actually better than mine by far. How [could it be otherwise], when most of what I have written here draws on his work and relies on it? I have no doubt about this. As regards what was seen in the above-mentioned dream, then perhaps it is the case that the shaykh meant to point out those few places in which I disagreed with what he had written on account of some little comment [that I had made therein]. But these [instances] are very few and I do not think that they add up to more than ten such instances. Among these is where shaykh [al-Mahallī] comments in sūrat Sād: The Spirit is a delicate organism (jism latīf) that gives life to a human being by permeating it. I followed this [opinion] at first, but then I remembered the restriction [made by God] while [working on the commentary] at sūrat al-Hijr; and so I erased it because of where God says, And they will question you concerning the Spirit. Say, The Spirit is of the command of my Lord. And of knowledge you have not been given except a little [] [to the end of] the verse [Q. 15:85]. For, it is explicit, or almost explicit, in stating that the [true nature of the] Spirit is of Gods knowledge [only], exalted be He we do not know it. Thus, it is better that we should refrain from trying to define it. For this reason also, shaykh Tāj al-Dīn b. al-Subkī says in [his work] Jam al-jawāmi (The compendium of compendiums): As for the spirit, Muhammad (s) never spoke about it and we should [also] therefore refrain [from speaking about it]. Another [instance] is where the shaykh says in [his commentary to] sūrat al-Hajj [Q. 22:17], The Sabaeans (al-sābiūn) are a 311 Jewish sect. I mention this in [my commentary to] sūrat al-Baqara [Q. 2:62], where I added the following [gloss] or [they are] a Christian [sect], in order to point out a variant opinion, generally acknowledged, particularly by our colleagues, the [Shāfiī] jurists, and [also acknowledged] by the Minhāj (The Method []), where it is stated that the Samaritans opposed the Jews and the Sabaeans [opposed] the Christians [respectively] over the fundamentals of their religion. In his [Mahallīs] Sharh (Commentary), al-Shāfiī, may God be pleased with him, is reported to have said that the Sabaeans were a Christian sect. At this moment, I cannot recall a third instance [of Mahallīs objections]. Perhaps these are the sort of examples which the Shaykh, may God have mercy on him, was pointing out [in the dream]. And God knows best what is correct, and to Him is the return and the [final] resort.




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