CLICK IMAGE: Tanzil Website

UNCOVERING the original message of the Arabic Qur'an by using Lexicons compiled more than 1,000 years ago.

ISOLATING Fact from Fiction.

RECOVERING Hope and regaining the perspective where Humanity is one, God's Message is one, and our Future CAN become one we all look forward to!


Image: 14th C. Qur'an, Mamluk origin, Library of Congress; Rights obtained.

A BREAKTHROUGH project which helps understand the Qur'an AS REVEALED -not just 'as explained.'


Sunday, February 21, 2010

Day 44; HQ4:49-65, pages 87+88

Welcome Friends:  Ahlan wa sahlan!
Thank you for your comments; they help make this a better project, so please keep it up!
1.     Our Reading today starts (verses 49-50) with something we can all relate to, people who يزكون ‘yuzakkoona’ themselves: they are full of self-praise, ‘expanding upon’ their own worth and ‘purging’ their records of any wrongdoing.  They tend to paint themselves in a most favorable light.  So the term ‘zaka’ زكا- زكي bears two connotations, growth and purity. 
To elaborate, the term ‘zaka*’ carries the connotation of ‘cultivating something which is by nature uncontaminated, and making it grow.  Its proceeds will also be pure, and will continue to provide new growth.’  We did not explain this term when we came across it earlier, in HQ3:164, posting of Feb 10th), as it was easily understood when referring to wealth, while here it needs explanation as it refers to humans. 

2.     These verses relate to some among the People of (earlier) Compilation, not all.  Such persons did not take their entire compilation to heart, but rather, took only the self-serving parts of it.  Muhammad Asad points out in note 66 that this is because they considered themselves God’s ‘Chosen.’

But these verses must stand for all time, and will fit ANY who take only the self-serving parts of their Compilation and ignore- or wrongfully interpret -the other parts.
Yusuf Ali tells us in note 570: “The sanctimonious or self-sanctified people are the farthest from sanctity or purity, which can only proceed from God.”  

3.     Verses 51-55 are about such persons, who received ‘a portion of the Compilation’ نصيبا من الكتاب- and who believe in “sorcery and evil/baseless mysteries and the powers of evil” (Y. Ali/M. Asad).  Asad puts it in today’s terminology, saying "الجبت" could be fanciful ideas (delusions – دجل  (أوهام while "طاغوت" could be ‘Superstition,’ as in omens, foretelling the future, etc.

Frankly speaking dear Reader, I fear that many of us who call ourselves ‘Muslim’ are being taken that way, as one can tell by the promulgation of satellite channels that discuss Magic and Genies, as well as what one editor told me about the types of books that are best-selling amongst Muslims, many of whom do not realize that a ‘jinn’ in Arabic is any unseen thing, even nighttime is ‘jan’*, and that certain Prophetic sayings (such as cover your food from ‘jinns,’ or do not urinate in a hole in the ground ) were referring to unseen, yet stealthy and dangerous creatures, such as bacteria and snakes! 
How many of us know that the word ‘Janna’ (Garden-Paradise) is so named because it is ‘enclosed’ from view?  Or that God did indeed name Moses’ staff (which became a serpent) a ‘Jaan,’ جان not once, but twice (HQ27:10; 28:31), or that Muslims were the first to build Psychiatric Hospitals stating that people suspected of being ‘touched or possessed by jinn’ needed mental care*? 

Aren’t we in fact, Cognizant Humans? 
Despite that, do we give anyone but God power to benefit or harm us? 
Is there any ‘Shirk’ in our worship of Him? 
I will leave the answer to your judgment;  I will only say this:

God’s verses are for us; they caution us in everything that matters, and we must heed them.
Back to our verses:
Is a share of God’s Dominion theirs alone?  If indeed it was, they would be so tightfisted that they would not part with any amount, even if small enough to be measured by the groove of a date-pit نقيرا.  What an eloquent similitude. 

4.     Verses 56-57 contrast the ultimate fate of those who had spent their worldly life in Denial (and misdeeds against others as understood from context), and those who had spent it in Faith and good deeds.  The first Fateful picture paints the worst horror your mind could ever imagine. We know that the pain experienced by burn victims is among the worst known to man, and even superficial burns, which are un-blistered (commonly called first-degree burns), are painful.  In a second-degree burn, which is a partial-thickness burn, the outermost skin layer (the epidermis), and the uppermost part of the dermis are damaged, and peripheral nerve endings become exposed in the damaged dermal layer.  That is extremely painful.
Read the verse, which comes to warn in the strongest terms possible of the consequence of Denying God and hurting His creatures throughout one’s life.  Every time a wrong is committed against someone, this end further materializes into a Reality.  What goes around comes around.  This is the justice which we all seek against someone who has made our lives a living Hell.
Then, in verse 57 we get the contrasting picture; one of Heavenly Bliss!  And what is Heaven without someone close to share it with?

5.     Verse 58 is a most beautiful COMMAND, oft-quoted and NOT oft-practiced, unfortunately.  The importance of Trusts, and Ruling with Justice, which God Himself says is ‘the best of instruction!’  Read Asad’s note 75.

6.     Verse 59 is a call to the Faithful to obey God and to obey His Messenger and figures of authority from amongst themselves.  It is understood from the last part that the authority we should obey is one we have chosen (probably by consultation –shura شورى HQ42:38) from amongst ourselves and whom we have authorized.  Institutions, legislations…all that we set up to serve our communities deserve our full compliance. 
Does that apply to the laws of ANY country? 
We must use our higher judgment as Cognizant Humans:    
·        A Faithful person would naturally obey the law of the land they have seen fit to live in. 
·        A Faithful person is someone who best models their own Faith, someone who is always AN ASSET, never a liability. 

7.     Verses 60-63 are about hypocrites, as is much of this Chapter.  Here is where we first hear the word ‘Hypocrites’ or ‘munaafiqeen,’ منافقين- منافقون (although they were well-described in HQ2:8-20, 3:167-168).  Put each word in Tanzil if you’d like to learn more about them.
Verse 63 tells us how the Messenger, peace upon him, was told to deal with them. Verses 64-65 continue along the same theme, and call for obedience that these Hypocrites owe to the Messenger, illustrating his high esteem with regard to God.  No matter what wrong one had committed against oneself, having the Messenger in their midst was a chance for forgiveness not to be missed.  They should ‘yussallimu,’ which means to literally ‘give in’ as the noun ‘tasslima’ which comes right after it illustrates.  No wonder that those of them who missed that chance and physically attempted to harm him and the Faithful were warned of the torment of Hellfire!

But to end on a positive note, let us remember verse 57 (in a translation blending Y. Ali and M. Asad!):

“But those who attain to faith and do righteous deeds We shall bring into gardens through which running waters flow, therein to abide beyond the count of time; there shall they have purified companions: and We shall admit them to cool shade ever deepening (happiness increasing).”

Enough said!
Our next Reading is from HQ4:66-79.

Peace unto all!
*معجم المقاييس: (زكي) الزاء والكاف والحرف المعتلّ أصلٌ يدل على نَمَاءٍ وزيادة. ويقال الطَّهارة زكاة المال. قال *بعضهم: سُمِّيت بذلك لأنَّها مما يُرجَى به زَكاءُ المال، وهو زيادتهُ ونماؤه. وقال بعضُهم:سمِّيت زكاةً لأنّها طهارة. قالوا: وحُجّة ذلك قولُهُ جلَّ ثناؤُه: {خُذْ مِنْ أَمْوَالِهِمْ صَدَقَةً تُطَهِّرُهُمْ وَتُزَكِّيهِمْ بِهَا} [التوبة 103]. والأصل في ذلك كلِّه راجع إلى هذين المعنيين، وهما النَّماء والطهارة.

لسان العرب:زكا: الزَّكاء، ممدود: النَّماء والرَّيْعُ، زَكا يَزْكو زَكاء وزُكُوّاً. والزَّكاء: ما أَخرجه الله من الثمر. وأَرضٌ زَكِيَّةٌ: طيِّبةٌ سمينة؛ حكاه أَبو حنيفة. زكا، والزَّرع يَزْكو زَكاء، ممدود، أَي نما. وأَزْكاه الله، وكلُّ شيء يزداد ويَنْمي فهو يَزْكو زكاء.
والزَّكاةُ: الصلاحُ. ورجل تقيٌّ زَكِيٌّ أَي زاكٍ من قوم أَتْقياء أَزْكِياء، وقد زَكا زَكاء وزُكُوّاً وزَكِيَ وتَزَكَّى، وزَكَّاه الله، وزَكَّى نفسَه تَزْكِيةً: مدَحها.  وزَكَّى الرجل نفسَه إِذا وصفها وأَثنى عليها. والزَّكاةُ: زَكاةُ المال معروفة، وهو تطهيره، والفعل منه زَكَّى زَكِّي تَزْكِيةً إِذا أَدّى عن ماله زَكاته غيره: الزَّكاة ما أَخرجته من
مالك لتهطره به، وقد زَكَّى المالَ. وقوله تعالى: وتُزَكِّيهم بها؛ قالوا: تُطهِّرُهم. قال أَبو علي: الزَّكاةُ صفوةُ الشيء. وفي التنزيل العزيز: والذين هم للزَّكاةِ
فاعِلُون؛ قال بعضُهم: الذين هم للزكاة مُؤْتُون، وقال آخرون: الذين هم للعمل الصالح فاعِلُون، وقال تعالى: خيراً منه زَكاةً؛ أَي خيراً منه عملاً صالحاً، وقال الفراء: زَكاةً صلاحاً، وكذلك قوله عز وجل: وحناناً من لدُنَّا وزَكاةً؛ قال: صلاحاً. أَبو زيد النحوي في قوله عز وجل: ولولا فضل الله عليكم ورحمتُه ما زَكا منكم من أَحد أَبداً ولكن الله يُزَكِّي من يشاء؛ وقرئ ما زَكَّى منكم، فمن قرأَ ما زَكا فمعناه ما صلح منكم، ومن قرأَ ما زَكَّى فمعناه ما أَصلح، ولكن الله يُزَكِّي من يشاء أَي يُصلح، وقيل لما يُخْرَج من المال للمساكين من حقوقهم زَكاةٌ لأَنه تطهيرٌ للمال وتَثْميرٌ وإِصْلاحٌ ونماء، كل ذلك قيل.

(جن) أصل واحد، وهو السَّتْر والتستُّر. فالجنَّة ما يصير إليه المسلمون في الآخرة، وهو ثواب مستورٌ عنهم اليومَ. والجَنّة البستان، وهو ذاك لأنّ الشجر بِوَرَقه يَستُر. والجنين: الولد في بطن أُمّه. والجنين: المقبور. والجَنَان: القَلْب. والمِجَنُّ: الترسُ. وكلُّ ما استُتر به من السِّلاح فهو جُنَّة. والجِنّة: الجنون؛ وذلك أنّه يغطِّي العقل. وجَنَانُ الليل: سوادُه وسَتْرُه الأشياءَ. والجنُّ سُمُّوا بذلك لأنهم متستِّرون عن أعيُنِ الخَلْق. قال الله تعالى: {إِنَّهُ يَرَاكُمْ هُوَ وَقَبِيلُهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لا تَرَوْنَهُمْ} [الأعراف 27].

From Wikepedia:*
“Inspired by fact that the Qur'an decreed the necessity of providing humane treatment for the insane, the first specialist institutions for the care of the mad appeared in Islamic regions. These hospitals, called maristans, were well regarded with European travellers reporting back on their wonder at the care and kindness shown to lunatics. The first such documented hospital for the insane was built in Cairo by Ahmad ibn Tulun in 872.”

Let's TWEET this!

Tweet me!