Non Physical Fighting- 4, Badr, Ohad stages

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

This post is a succession of the series of posts about ‘Non-physical fighting’ which reviews verses in Al-Quran normally thought to be regarding physical war-fare. We have previously seen that believers are expected to be constantly engaged in ideological fight with those who are bent on violence and blood-shed on earth.

Some people ask, why did the older generations before us glorify holy wars and did not abstain from warfare and physical killing in the name of religion. Is this something new being propagated to stay away from physical fighting. Allah asks the same question in below ayat so that the present generation (in all eras) can learn from the past generation’s mistakes and take heed.  

11:116 فَلَوْلَا كَانَ مِنَ الْقُرُونِ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ أُولُو بَقِيَّةٍ يَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْفَسَادِ فِي الْأَرْضِ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا مِّمَّنْ أَنجَيْنَا مِنْهُمْ ۗ وَاتَّبَعَ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا مَا أُتْرِفُوا فِيهِ وَكَانُوا مُجْرِمِينَ

Why were there not, among the generations before you, persons possessed of balanced good sense, prohibiting from fasad/mischief in the earth – except a few among them whom We saved (from harm)? But the wrong-doers pursued the enjoyments which were given to them, and they were criminals/sinful.

In this post we will be primarily looking at those ayahs which are thought to be related to traditional wars in Islamic history at the time of prophet (pbuh) i.e Badr, Ohad and Hunain.

The Covenant:

2:26-27  إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يَسْتَحْيِي أَن يَضْرِبَ مَثَلًا مَّا بَعُوضَةً فَمَا فَوْقَهَا ۚ فَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا فَيَعْلَمُونَ أَنَّهُ الْحَقُّ مِن رَّبِّهِمْ ۖ وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا فَيَقُولُونَ مَاذَا أَرَادَ اللَّهُ بِهَٰذَا مَثَلًا ۘ يُضِلُّ بِهِ كَثِيرًا وَيَهْدِي بِهِ كَثِيرًا ۚ وَمَا يُضِلُّ بِهِ إِلَّا الْفَاسِقِينَ  الَّذِينَ يَنقُضُونَ عَهْدَ اللَّهِ مِن بَعْدِ مِيثَاقِهِ وَيَقْطَعُونَ مَا أَمَرَ اللَّهُ بِهِ أَن يُوصَلَ وَيُفْسِدُونَ فِي الْأَرْضِ ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ

Allah does not shy away from citing the example of a mosquito, or anything above it. As for those who believe, they know that it is the truth from their Lord. As for the rejecters, they Say: What does Allah intend with this example? He lets many stray by it, and He guides many, but He does not let let any stray with it except the fasiqeen/evil-doers. Those who break Allah’s Covenant after it is ratified, and who cutoff what Allah Has ordered to be joined, and do violence on earth, they are the losers.

Many times we hear people quoting a part of above ayahs that Allah guides lot of people with Al-Quran and at the same time many people are mis-guided with Quran. But misguided are only those who are Fasiqeen (wrong doers) as per above ayahs. Those fasiq’s who break the covenant of Allah. The covenant of Allah is stated in below ayat 2:84, which categorically asks Bani-Israeel not to shed their blood with physical fighting. The examples of fight in Quran are cited for believer’s ideological fight with violence mongers on earth. However these people who are bent upon physical fighting as Holy wars, cannot accept that the fighting examples cited by Allah are for ideological fight in which you are prohibited to shed blood and kill the nafs/psyche only of rejecters. When they break the covenant of not shedding blood and become fasiq who get misguided by Al-Quran into raging violence and blood shed on earth in the name of Jihad and Holy wars. 

2:84 وَإِذْ أَخَذْنَا مِيثَاقَكُمْ لَا تَسْفِكُونَ دِمَاءَكُمْ وَلَا تُخْرِجُونَ أَنفُسَكُم مِّن دِيَارِكُمْ ثُمَّ أَقْرَرْتُمْ وَأَنتُمْ تَشْهَدُونَ

And when We took a covenant with you, not to shed your blood and do not expel your souls/selves from your circles then you confirmed and you are witness to it.

It is expected that Allah will test the believers with their wealth and their nafs (psyche). They will  constantly be hearing painful statements and insults from people who have the Book and people who join others with Allah. 

3:186  لَتُبْلَوُنَّ فِي أَمْوَالِكُمْ وَأَنفُسِكُمْ وَلَتَسْمَعُنَّ مِنَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ أَشْرَكُوا أَذًى كَثِيرًا ۚ وَإِن تَصْبِرُوا وَتَتَّقُوا فَإِنَّ ذَٰلِكَ مِنْ عَزْمِ الْأُمُورِ

Certainly you shall be tested in your wealth and in your nafs; and you shall certainly hear from those who were given the Book before you and from those who joined partners (with Allah) a lot of annoying things. And if you persevere patiently, and take guard,- then surely that is of the strengthened resolve.

Earlier on this site, we have discussed that Allah created and established His laws in the Universe. He sent the code of conduct for humanity to follow in the world and sent his messengers and prophets to explain His ‘Word’ to mankind. People after getting knowledge about Allah’s message, differed among themselves and formed themselves into many differing religions and schools of thoughts.  Allah’s message to mankind is that they are to do good and lead peaceful life in the world and not to engage in violence and temptations in the world and they will be judged in the hereafter for their deeds. However, deviant schools of thoughts developed who made it appear a virtuous act of forcing one’s belief system on others by use of force. Allah’s messengers were sent repeatedly to direct people to revert to Allah’s Word and leave alternative teachings.
Allah’s book tells us that majority of the people in the world are not on the right path as majority don’t take their guidance from the Book of Allah. A person who is born in a particular religion and school of thought, initially accepts the ideas and beliefs of the environment in which he is born. Then at some point in life, he is presented with the ayahs/signs of Allah. If he accepts the divine message, then this journey on Allah’s straight path starts. The people in his environment wants him back in their system of belief. They try their best however when they don’t succeed they say what Allah has described in ayahs 2-142-143.

After a believer takes the major decision of ‘migration in belief‘ from his previous belief system to the belief system as prescribed in Quran ( see previous post ‘migration in belief’ ) and continuing his spiritual journey towards Allah, a believer will grow in his belief and understanding of the spirit of ayahs. This will show in his behavior with disbelievers when engaged in ideological fight with them. 

48:29  مُّحَمَّدٌ رَّسُولُ اللَّهِ ۚ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ أَشِدَّاءُ عَلَى الْكُفَّارِ رُحَمَاءُ بَيْنَهُمْ ۖ تَرَاهُمْ رُكَّعًا سُجَّدًا يَبْتَغُونَ فَضْلًا مِّنَ اللَّهِ وَرِضْوَانًا ۖ سِيمَاهُمْ فِي وُجُوهِهِم مِّنْ أَثَرِ السُّجُودِ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ مَثَلُهُمْ فِي التَّوْرَاةِ ۚ وَمَثَلُهُمْ فِي الْإِنجِيلِ كَزَرْعٍ أَخْرَجَ شَطْأَهُ فَآزَرَهُ فَاسْتَغْلَظَ فَاسْتَوَىٰ عَلَىٰ سُوقِهِ يُعْجِبُ الزُّرَّاعَ لِيَغِيظَ بِهِمُ الْكُفَّارَ ۗ وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ مِنْهُم مَّغْفِرَةً وَأَجْرًا عَظِيمًا

Muhammad is the messenger of Allah; and those who are with him are strong against unbelievers, (but) compassionate amongst each other. You will see them bow and prostrate themselves (in prayer), seeking grace from Allah and (His) good pleasure. On their faces are their marks, the traces of their prostration. This is their similitude in the Taurat; and their similitude in the Injeel, like a seed which sends forth its blade, then makes it strong; it then becomes thick, and it stands on its own stem, (filling) the sowers with wonder and delight. As a result, it fills the unbelievers with rage at them. Allah has promised those among them who believe and do righteous deeds forgiveness, and a great reward.

In the initial stage of spiritual journey towards Allah, a believers feels left alone in the world as he does not relate to the religious beliefs of his close community any more. He also listens a lot of annoying things from the associaters around him. The believer in initial stages may not have answers to many questions to respond to them. This situation may bring him into a depressive state. At this time the messenger (invoked in one’s psyche/nafs) consoles the believer and Allah sends unseen forces to help the believer in upholding the Word of Allah against the word of unbelievers. 

9:40  إِلَّا تَنصُرُوهُ فَقَدْ نَصَرَهُ اللَّهُ إِذْ أَخْرَجَهُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا ثَانِيَ اثْنَيْنِ إِذْ هُمَا فِي الْغَارِ إِذْ يَقُولُ لِصَاحِبِهِ لَا تَحْزَنْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَنَا ۖ فَأَنزَلَ اللَّهُ سَكِينَتَهُ عَلَيْهِ وَأَيَّدَهُ بِجُنُودٍ لَّمْ تَرَوْهَا وَجَعَلَ كَلِمَةَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا السُّفْلَىٰ ۗ وَكَلِمَةُ اللَّهِ هِيَ الْعُلْيَا ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

If you people won’t help him, Allah did indeed help him, when the unbelievers drove him out. He was the second of the two when; they two were in the cave (deep in despair), and he said to his companion, “Have no fear, for Allah is with us”. Then Allah sent down His peace upon him, and strengthened him with forces which you people did not see, and made the sayings of the rejecters lowly and the Word of Allah is exalted one for Allah is Exalted in Might, Wise.

Early in their spiritual journey when the believers are supposedly not that strong to take on, stalwarts of unbelief in ideological fight, Allah helps them. Badr means ‘early or spontaneously’. The below ayat is referring to an early stage of believers when they were helped by Allah and got victory over the rejecters.

3:123  وَلَقَدْ نَصَرَكُمُ اللَّهُ بِبَدْرٍ وَأَنتُمْ أَذِلَّةٌ ۖ فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ

And Allah had helped you with Badr/forthwith, when you were weak; thus take guard of Allah; so that you be thankful.

For those people who are stuck with false beliefs and dogmas and unable to submit to the message of God, Al-Quran cites the examples of them as having yokes stuck in their necks. ‘Banan’, means finger tips, fixed things and also grips. So the angels are asked to strike at the necks where they have fixated yokes and also to strike their fingers/grips on false- hood on which the rejecters are holding tight. The angels help the believers in their ideological fight by making them stead fast in their beliefs and striking the very foundations of belief systems of the unbelievers. 

8:12  إِذْ يُوحِي رَبُّكَ إِلَى الْمَلَائِكَةِ أَنِّي مَعَكُمْ فَثَبِّتُوا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا ۚ سَأُلْقِي فِي قُلُوبِ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا الرُّعْبَ فَاضْرِبُوا فَوْقَ الْأَعْنَاقِ وَاضْرِبُوا مِنْهُمْ كُلَّ بَنَانٍ

Remember your Lord inspired the angels, “I am with you, so you make the believers persevere. I will instill awe in the hearts of the rejecters, thus you strike above the necks and strike among them all the fixed ones/grips.”

Thus with an early and forthwith help from Allah, believers are encouraged and as per ayat 48:29 keep on gaining spiritual strength by the will of Allah. However, getting understanding of the spirit of ayahs is not an instantaneous process. It comes with the will of Allah only, and for some it may take a lot of time to make them impatient. 

20:114  فَتَعَالَى اللَّهُ الْمَلِكُ الْحَقُّ ۗ وَلَا تَعْجَلْ بِالْقُرْآنِ مِن قَبْلِ أَن يُقْضَىٰ إِلَيْكَ وَحْيُهُ ۖ وَقُل رَّبِّ زِدْنِي عِلْمًا

High above all is Allah, the King of the Truth! be not in haste with the Qur’an before it’s inspiration to you is completed, but say, “O my Lord! advance me in knowledge.”

The above ayat 20:114 should be a reminder to believers that even the messenger (pbuh) cannot be hasty with Quran before the spirit of it, is inspired on him. Therefore there is no way that believers can force their way in getting spirit of Quran until the time decreed by Allah.

The below ayahs informs about another stage when believers have achieved some intellectual maturity and knowledge. It seems at this stage some of them become over-confident and assume that they can take on any unbeliever in ideological fight. Some of them even get tempted to do it as a show off of their knowledge to gain admiration of people. They get some initial successes which makes them keep going at it, however, forcing your way in understanding of ayahs without spirit of Allah is tantamount to making your voice louder than the prophet (pbuh) and in this way, those who do it,  would end up conflicting with each other and are then faced with one distress after another.

3:152-3 وَلَقَدْ صَدَقَكُمُ اللَّهُ وَعْدَهُ إِذْ تَحُسُّونَهُم بِإِذْنِهِ ۖ حَتَّىٰ إِذَا فَشِلْتُمْ وَتَنَازَعْتُمْ فِي الْأَمْرِ وَعَصَيْتُم مِّن بَعْدِ مَا أَرَاكُم مَّا تُحِبُّونَ ۚ مِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ الدُّنْيَا وَمِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ الْآخِرَةَ ۚ ثُمَّ صَرَفَكُمْ عَنْهُمْ لِيَبْتَلِيَكُمْ ۖ وَلَقَدْ عَفَا عَنكُمْ ۗ وَاللَّهُ ذُو فَضْلٍ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ إِذْ تُصْعِدُونَ وَلَا تَلْوُونَ عَلَىٰ أَحَدٍ وَالرَّسُولُ يَدْعُوكُمْ فِي أُخْرَاكُمْ فَأَثَابَكُمْ غَمًّا بِغَمٍّ لِّكَيْلَا تَحْزَنُوا عَلَىٰ مَا فَاتَكُمْ وَلَا مَا أَصَابَكُمْ ۗ وَاللَّهُ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ

Allah did indeed made true His promise to you when you, with His permission overwhelmed them,-until you lost courage and disputed in the order, and disobeyed after He brought you in sight of what you covet. Among you are some who are after the World and some who desire the Here-after. Then He diverted you from them in order to test you, and indeed He forgave you, for Allah is full of grace to those who believe. When you were climbing up, without turning back to anyone, and the messenger was calling you from behind, there did Allah gave you one distress after another so that you do not grieve for what had escaped you and for (the ill) that had befallen you, for Allah is well aware of all that you do.

Believers cannot force the spirit of the Word and when they would forge ahead and engage in ideological fight with rejecters before the proper time, then they are bound to be defeated. After defeat they will be facing grief and in their grief a party of them may start thinking that all this spiritual journey so far may have been wasteful and even false. 

3:154  ثُمَّ أَنزَلَ عَلَيْكُم مِّن بَعْدِ الْغَمِّ أَمَنَةً نُّعَاسًا يَغْشَىٰ طَائِفَةً مِّنكُمْ ۖ وَطَائِفَةٌ قَدْ أَهَمَّتْهُمْ أَنفُسُهُمْ يَظُنُّونَ بِاللَّهِ غَيْرَ الْحَقِّ ظَنَّ الْجَاهِلِيَّةِ ۖ يَقُولُونَ هَل لَّنَا مِنَ الْأَمْرِ مِن شَيْءٍ ۗ قُلْ إِنَّ الْأَمْرَ كُلَّهُ لِلَّهِ ۗ يُخْفُونَ فِي أَنفُسِهِم مَّا لَا يُبْدُونَ لَكَ ۖ يَقُولُونَ لَوْ كَانَ لَنَا مِنَ الْأَمْرِ شَيْءٌ مَّا قُتِلْنَا هَاهُنَا ۗ قُل لَّوْ كُنتُمْ فِي بُيُوتِكُمْ لَبَرَزَ الَّذِينَ كُتِبَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْقَتْلُ إِلَىٰ مَضَاجِعِهِمْ ۖ وَلِيَبْتَلِيَ اللَّهُ مَا فِي صُدُورِكُمْ وَلِيُمَحِّصَ مَا فِي قُلُوبِكُمْ ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَلِيمٌ بِذَاتِ الصُّدُورِ

After the distress, He sent down calm on you which encompassed slumber on a party of you, while another party was stirred to anxiety, moved by wrong suspicions on Allah due to ignorance. They said. “Do we have any thing (any say) in the order?” You (the Messenger) tell them. “Indeed, the order is fully for Allah.” They hide in their nafs/psyche what they do not reveal to you. They say  “If we had anything to do with this Order, We would not have been killed here.” Say. “Even if you were in your homes, those for whom fight is written, would be brought to their places “; but (all this was) that Allah might test what is in your breasts and purge what is in your hearts, for Allah knows well the secrets of the hearts.

After the distress and defeat in ideological fight, causes some of them to go to their pre-belief assumptions and some of them may start doubting the messenger. They think they should have some leeway in understanding of Allah’s Orders. Some start doubting why we had to fight in that manner. At that stage to some of them, Satan was able to dissuade for the time being, however, they were forgiven by Allah. 

3:155 إِنَّ الَّذِينَ تَوَلَّوْا مِنكُمْ يَوْمَ الْتَقَى الْجَمْعَانِ إِنَّمَا اسْتَزَلَّهُمُ الشَّيْطَانُ بِبَعْضِ مَا كَسَبُوا ۖ وَلَقَدْ عَفَا اللَّهُ عَنْهُمْ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ حَلِيمٌ

Those of you who turned back on the day the two accumulations met,-it was Satan who caused them to falter, with some (evil) they had earned and certainly Allah forgave them for Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Forbearing.


There may come yet another stage and situation, when believers would have gained a lot of spiritual strength, knowledge and maturity and they would be in good number as well. That would make them over confident and they would take the opposition lightly, at that time they would face unexpected defeat from their opposition. 

9:25  لَقَدْ نَصَرَكُمُ اللَّهُ فِي مَوَاطِنَ كَثِيرَةٍ ۙ وَيَوْمَ حُنَيْنٍ ۙ إِذْ أَعْجَبَتْكُمْ كَثْرَتُكُمْ فَلَمْ تُغْنِ عَنكُمْ شَيْئًا وَضَاقَتْ عَلَيْكُمُ الْأَرْضُ بِمَا رَحُبَتْ ثُمَّ وَلَّيْتُم مُّدْبِرِينَ

Indeed, Allah had helped you in many places and on the day of ‘Hunain’ your great number elated you, but they availed you nothing and the land despite its vastness became constrained for you and you had to retreat on your backs.

Then after their defeat due to their over confidence, Allah would help them and punished the rejecters.  

9:26  ثُمَّ أَنزَلَ اللَّهُ سَكِينَتَهُ عَلَىٰ رَسُولِهِ وَعَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَأَنزَلَ جُنُودًا لَّمْ تَرَوْهَا وَعَذَّبَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا ۚ وَذَٰلِكَ جَزَاءُ الْكَافِرِينَ

Then Allah poured His calm on the messenger and the believers and sent those forces which ye did not see and punished the rejecters thus is the reward of the rejecters.



Halal and Haram food

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

The topic of lawful and unlawful food is an interesting topic. Normally vegan food which is not harmful for human consumptions is not controversial in this regard. The differences occurs mostly in the opinions about, which animals are lawful to eat and which are not. In addition, if a certain method of killing the animal is not followed then even the lawful animal would become unlawful to eat. We will review in this post the injunctions about lawful and unlawful food in Al-Quran.

5:87  يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُحَرِّمُوا طَيِّبَاتِ مَا أَحَلَّ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ وَلَا تَعْتَدُوا ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ

O you people who believe! make not Haram/forbidden, the good things which Allah has made lawful for you, and you commit no excesses, for Allah loves not those who transgress.

The above ayat states a principle that the good things are not to be declared unlawful by people, which means that all good food is lawful unless there is a clear injunction by Allah against eating it.

In absence of clear injunction of Allah, if any body persuades or creates doubts about a certain food, his advise is not to be considered.

6:150  قُلْ هَلُمَّ شُهَدَاءَكُمُ الَّذِينَ يَشْهَدُونَ أَنَّ اللَّهَ حَرَّمَ هَٰذَا ۖ فَإِن شَهِدُوا فَلَا تَشْهَدْ مَعَهُمْ ۚ وَلَا تَتَّبِعْ أَهْوَاءَ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا وَالَّذِينَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ بِالْآخِرَةِ وَهُم بِرَبِّهِمْ يَعْدِلُونَ

Say, “bring forward your witnesses who witness that Allah did forbid it, then If they give (such) witness, you (the messenger) do not witness with them, nor follow the desires of those who treat our ayahs/signs as falsehoods, and those who don’t believe in the hereafter, for they hold others as equal with their Lord.

It seems that the fascination of declaring food, haram and halal was prevalent in the times of the messenger as well. Therefore Allah asks the messenger (pbuh) to challenge those people who do that, to bring their witnesses. Allah orders the messenger that when these people give such witness, you don’t witness with them as these people equate Allah’s orders with others’ orders.

6:114  فَكُلُوا مِمَّا رَزَقَكُمُ اللَّهُ حَلَالًا طَيِّبًا وَاشْكُرُوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ إِن كُنتُمْ إِيَّاهُ تَعْبُدُونَ

So eat of the sustenance which Allah has provided for you, lawful and good; and be grateful for the favors of Allah, if it is He whom you serve.

The below ayat warns that majority of people will mislead in matters of lawful and unlawful food. Therefore you should make efforts to find out what Allah has clarified about lawful and unlawful food from Allah’s ayahs.

6:119  وَمَا لَكُمْ أَلَّا تَأْكُلُوا مِمَّا ذُكِرَ اسْمُ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهِ وَقَدْ فَصَّلَ لَكُم مَّا حَرَّمَ عَلَيْكُمْ إِلَّا مَا اضْطُرِرْتُمْ إِلَيْهِ ۗ وَإِنَّ كَثِيرًا لَّيُضِلُّونَ بِأَهْوَائِهِم بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ ۗ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ هُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِالْمُعْتَدِينَ

Why should you not eat of, on which Allah’s name has been pronounced, when He has explained to you in detail what is forbidden to you – except to which you are compelled to, But many mislead without knowledge due to their desires, Verily your Lord knows best, the transgressors.

The messenger proclaims that he does not find any thing unlawful for eating except that it be a carrion or flowing blood or swine flesh or other than Allah’s name is proclaimed on it.

6:145  قُل لَّا أَجِدُ فِي مَا أُوحِيَ إِلَيَّ مُحَرَّمًا عَلَىٰ طَاعِمٍ يَطْعَمُهُ إِلَّا أَن يَكُونَ مَيْتَةً أَوْ دَمًا مَّسْفُوحًا أَوْ لَحْمَ خِنزِيرٍ فَإِنَّهُ رِجْسٌ أَوْ فِسْقًا أُهِلَّ لِغَيْرِ اللَّهِ بِهِ ۚ فَمَنِ اضْطُرَّ غَيْرَ بَاغٍ وَلَا عَادٍ فَإِنَّ رَبَّكَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

Say. “I do not find in what is inspired to me, any thing forbidden to be eaten by one who wishes to eat it, unless it be dead meat, or blood flowing forth, or the flesh of swine,- for it is unclean or, transgression.  (Food) which  has been celebrated, for some one other than Allah”. But (even so), if a person is forced by necessity, without willful disobedience, nor transgressing due limits,- your Lord is Oft-forgiving, most Merciful.

In below ayat, it is written down on people, which methods of killing makes an animal forbidden for eating. These methods are:

1- An animal which is already dead before it is killed for eating is carrion and is not allowed. Flowing/spurting blood (دَمًا مَّسْفُوحًا ) is not allowed to be consumed. The blood which remains in the muscles of an animal after it is killed for eating, is not flowing blood and therefore is not a problem. About the pigs, the forbidden part of it is the meat ( لَحْمَ خِنزِيرٍ).  Some times long lists of apparently harmless food items are circulated touted as ‘haram’/forbidden, because they may contain certain chemicals/enzymes from pig products. Only pig meat is declared haram, therefore we should not worry ourselves to death by comparing these lists for non meat items. Also, there is no indication in Quran that pig is to be hated as a creature. They deserve mercy like all other animals and not hate. 

5:3  حُرِّمَتْ عَلَيْكُمُ الْمَيْتَةُ وَالدَّمُ وَلَحْمُ الْخِنزِيرِ وَمَا أُهِلَّ لِغَيْرِ اللَّهِ بِهِ وَالْمُنْخَنِقَةُ وَالْمَوْقُوذَةُ وَالْمُتَرَدِّيَةُ وَالنَّطِيحَةُ وَمَا أَكَلَ السَّبُعُ إِلَّا مَا ذَكَّيْتُمْ وَمَا ذُبِحَ عَلَى النُّصُبِ وَأَن تَسْتَقْسِمُوا بِالْأَزْلَامِ ۚ ذَٰلِكُمْ فِسْقٌ ۗ الْيَوْمَ يَئِسَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِن دِينِكُمْ فَلَا تَخْشَوْهُمْ وَاخْشَوْنِ ۚ الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِينَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِي وَرَضِيتُ لَكُمُ

Forbidden to you (for food) are; dead meat, blood, the flesh of swine, and that on which has been invoked a name, other than Allah’s; and that which has been killed by strangling, or by a violent blow, or by a headlong fall, or by being gored to death; and that which has been (partly) eaten by a wild animal; unless you are able to purify it; that which is slaughtered on fixed altars; (forbidden) also is the division by raffling with arrows (prospective). That is impiety. This day those who reject have given up hope from your Deen/judgment so fear them not but fear me. This day I have perfected your Deen/judgment for you and completed My favor upon you and have chosen for you Islam/Peace as your Deen. But if any is forced by hunger, with no inclination to transgression, Allah is indeed Oft-forgiving, most Merciful.

The above ayat informs about the methods of killing that would make even a lawful animal, unlawful to eat. These methods are given below:

  1. If the animal is killed by strangulation
  2. If the animal is killed by a violent blow for example by bolt stunning gun.
  3. If the animal is killed by falling down e.g from a height
  4. If the animal is gored to death or fallen prey to predatory animals except if you are able to purify and salvage it before it dies.
  5. If the animal is slaughtered on fixed places of altar, for example where personalities are celebrated for divine qualities e.g mausoleums/(mazars) of celebrated saints.  
  6. Distribution of the meat of an animal on flying arrows means, If the animal is killed and its meat distributed for a superstitious future benefit or avoidance of loss. E.g a black goat or chicken killed and its meat distributed for avoidance of bad omen, evil eye, presumed future hurts/injuries etc (animals slaughtered as sadaqa). 

5:4 يَسْأَلُونَكَ مَاذَا أُحِلَّ لَهُمْ ۖ قُلْ أُحِلَّ لَكُمُ الطَّيِّبَاتُ ۙ وَمَا عَلَّمْتُم مِّنَ الْجَوَارِحِ مُكَلِّبِينَ تُعَلِّمُونَهُنَّ مِمَّا عَلَّمَكُمُ اللَّهُ ۖ فَكُلُوا مِمَّا أَمْسَكْنَ عَلَيْكُمْ وَاذْكُرُوا اسْمَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهِ ۖ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَابِ

They ask you (the messenger) what is lawful to them (as food). Say. lawful to you are (all) good things and what you have taught your trained hunting animals (to catch) in the manner taught by Allah to you, thus eat what they hold (catch) for you and remember the name of Allah over it. And take guard of Allah; for Allah is swift in taking account.

When the trained hunting animals catch lawful prey for you, you are to proclaim the name of Allah on it before eating. 

The four legged cattle which graze are lawful animals for eating except those who are killed by methods mentioned in ayat 5:3. 

5:1 يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَوْفُوا بِالْعُقُودِ ۚ أُحِلَّتْ لَكُم بَهِيمَةُ الْأَنْعَامِ إِلَّا مَا يُتْلَىٰ عَلَيْكُمْ غَيْرَ مُحِلِّي الصَّيْدِ وَأَنتُمْ حُرُمٌ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَحْكُمُ مَا يُرِيدُ

O you people who believe! fulfill your obligations. For you are made lawful the cattle except for those which are read unto you. But when you are in Ahram, hunting/game is not lawful . Verily Allah gives orders of what He intends.

The ‘Anaam’/animals, mentioned here are those cattle who graze vegetation that comes out from earth i.e they are not carnivorous predatory animals (please see ayat 32:27). However, not allowed to hunt during the state of ‘Ahram’/pilgrimage garb.

32:27  أَوَلَمْ يَرَوْا أَنَّا نَسُوقُ الْمَاءَ إِلَى الْأَرْضِ الْجُرُزِ فَنُخْرِجُ بِهِ زَرْعًا تَأْكُلُ مِنْهُ أَنْعَامُهُمْ وَأَنفُسُهُمْ ۖ أَفَلَا يُبْصِرُونَ

And do they not see that We do drive water to parched soil (bare of herbage), and produce therewith crops, providing food for their cattle/animals and themselves? Have they not the vision?

The good/tayyab food on which Allah’s name is remembered, you should not refrain eating from it. 

6:119 وَمَا لَكُمْ أَلَّا تَأْكُلُوا مِمَّا ذُكِرَ اسْمُ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهِ وَقَدْ فَصَّلَ لَكُم مَّا حَرَّمَ عَلَيْكُمْ إِلَّا مَا اضْطُرِرْتُمْ إِلَيْهِ ۗ وَإِنَّ كَثِيرًا لَّيُضِلُّونَ بِأَهْوَائِهِم بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ ۗ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ هُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِالْمُعْتَدِينَ

Why should you not eat of, on which Allah’s name has been pronounced, when He has explained to you in detail what is forbidden to you – except to which you are compelled to, but many mislead without knowledge due to their desires, Verily your Lord knows best the transgressors.

Note that nobody even the messenger and prophets have the right to declare any food item as lawful or unlawful. Only Allah can pronounce the regulation. Messengers and prophets explain the injunctions to people from the Book. Therefore any order related to the lawfulness or unlawfulness of food, attributed to messengers, prophets or imams, if not backed up by Al-Kitab, is not credible. The satans are those people who are described in ayat 6:112 as those who are greatly inspired by golden words of personalities. 

10:59  قُلْ أَرَأَيْتُم مَّا أَنزَلَ اللَّهُ لَكُم مِّن رِّزْقٍ فَجَعَلْتُم مِّنْهُ حَرَامًا وَحَلَالًا قُلْ آللَّهُ أَذِنَ لَكُمْ ۖ أَمْ عَلَى اللَّهِ تَفْتَرُونَ

Say. “Do you see what things Allah hath sent down to you for sustenance? Yet you hold forbidden some things thereof and (some things) lawful.” Say. “Has Allah indeed permitted you, or do you invent (things) to attribute to Allah?”

16:114  فَكُلُوا مِمَّا رَزَقَكُمُ اللَّهُ حَلَالًا طَيِّبًا وَاشْكُرُوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ إِن كُنتُمْ إِيَّاهُ تَعْبُدُونَ

So eat of the sustenance which Allah has provided for you, lawful and good; and be grateful for the favors of Allah, if it is He whom you serve.

16:116  وَلَا تَقُولُوا لِمَا تَصِفُ أَلْسِنَتُكُمُ الْكَذِبَ هَٰذَا حَلَالٌ وَهَٰذَا حَرَامٌ لِّتَفْتَرُوا عَلَى اللَّهِ الْكَذِبَ ۚ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَفْتَرُونَ عَلَى اللَّهِ الْكَذِبَ لَا يُفْلِحُونَ

But say not – for any false thing that your tongues may put forth,- “This is lawful, and this is forbidden,” so as to ascribe false things to Allah. For those who ascribe false things to Allah, will never prosper.

5:96 أُحِلَّ لَكُمْ صَيْدُ الْبَحْرِ وَطَعَامُهُ مَتَاعًا لَّكُمْ وَلِلسَّيَّارَةِ ۖ وَحُرِّمَ عَلَيْكُمْ صَيْدُ الْبَرِّ مَا دُمْتُمْ حُرُمًا ۗ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ الَّذِي إِلَيْهِ تُحْشَرُونَ

Lawful to you is the hunting of water-game and its eating,- This is the benefit for yourselves and for the travelers; and forbidden is the pursuit of land-game when you are in Ahram/pilgrim garb. And take guard from Allah, to whom you shall be gathered.

The sea food i.e meat obtained from sea or rivers (water) is lawful to be eaten as long it is fresh. 

16:14  وَهُوَ الَّذِي سَخَّرَ الْبَحْرَ لِتَأْكُلُوا مِنْهُ لَحْمًا طَرِيًّا وَتَسْتَخْرِجُوا مِنْهُ حِلْيَةً تَلْبَسُونَهَا وَتَرَى الْفُلْكَ مَوَاخِرَ فِيهِ وَلِتَبْتَغُوا مِن فَضْلِهِ وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ

It is He who has made the sea subservient, so that you may eat fresh meat from it, and that you may extract therefrom ornaments to wear; and you sees the ships therein that plough the waves, that you may seek (thus) of the bounty of Allah and that you may be grateful.

6:118 فَكُلُوا مِمَّا ذُكِرَ اسْمُ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهِ إِن كُنتُم بِآيَاتِهِ مُؤْمِنِينَ

So eat of which Allah’s name has been pronounced, if you believe in His ayahs/signs.

22:36 وَالْبُدْنَ جَعَلْنَاهَا لَكُم مِّن شَعَائِرِ اللَّهِ لَكُمْ فِيهَا خَيْرٌ ۖ فَاذْكُرُوا اسْمَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهَا صَوَافَّ ۖ فَإِذَا وَجَبَتْ جُنُوبُهَا فَكُلُوا مِنْهَا وَأَطْعِمُوا الْقَانِعَ وَالْمُعْتَرَّ ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ سَخَّرْنَاهَا لَكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ

The sacrificial animals, we have made for you as among the symbols from Allah. In them is (much) good for you. Then pronounce the name of Allah over them lined up. When they are down on their sides (after slaughter), eat you thereof, and feed the needy contended and the ones who asks . Thus have We made animals subject to you, that you may be grateful.

 If you are killing the animal yourself for eating or sacrifice such as during Hajj, then while killing them you have to proclaim Allahs’ name on them. If you did not kill the animal yourself nor witnessed its killing then you have to proclaim Allah’s name on the animals when eating. 

The food on which Allah’s name is not remembered, is not allowed to be eaten. 

6:121 وَلَا تَأْكُلُوا مِمَّا لَمْ يُذْكَرِ اسْمُ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهِ وَإِنَّهُ لَفِسْقٌ ۗ وَإِنَّ الشَّيَاطِينَ لَيُوحُونَ إِلَىٰ أَوْلِيَائِهِمْ لِيُجَادِلُوكُمْ ۖ وَإِنْ أَطَعْتُمُوهُمْ إِنَّكُمْ لَمُشْرِكُونَ

Eat not of which Allah’s name has not been pronounced. That would be impiety. But satans inspire their protectors to argue with you. If you were to obey them, you would indeed be mushrikeen/associaters.

22:34  وَلِكُلِّ أُمَّةٍ جَعَلْنَا مَنسَكًا لِّيَذْكُرُوا اسْمَ اللَّهِ عَلَىٰ مَا رَزَقَهُم مِّن بَهِيمَةِ الْأَنْعَامِ ۗ فَإِلَٰهُكُمْ إِلَٰهٌ وَاحِدٌ فَلَهُ أَسْلِمُوا ۗ وَبَشِّرِ الْمُخْبِتِينَ

To every people did We appoint rites, that they may remember the name of Allah over the sustenance He gave them from animals/cattle. Your God is One God. submit to Him (in Islam). and give the good news to those who humble themselves,-

3:93 كُلُّ الطَّعَامِ كَانَ حِلًّا لِّبَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ إِلَّا مَا حَرَّمَ إِسْرَائِيلُ عَلَىٰ نَفْسِهِ مِن قَبْلِ أَن تُنَزَّلَ التَّوْرَاةُ ۗ قُلْ فَأْتُوا بِالتَّوْرَاةِ فَاتْلُوهَا إِن كُنتُمْ صَادِقِينَ

All food was lawful to the Children of Israel, except what Israel made unlawful for itself, before the Taurat/Law was revealed. Say. “Bring the Taurat/Law and recite it, if you are truthful.”

All good food was lawful to children of Israeel, except that there were certain foods that Israel on their own, had made unlawful for himself before the Taurat/law was made clear. Israel is the one who as per ayat 17:03 was in the ark of prophet Nooh (a.s) i.e among the first generation of people with the prophet. They considered certain good food unlawful for them following traditions which was otherwise good and lawful and no prohibition of it was in Allah’s book (Taurat). So after Taurat (the ayahs of the Book containing explicit orders 3:7, 5:43) was clarified for them by the prophet, they should have let self imposed restrictions to go away.  

6:148  سَيَقُولُ الَّذِينَ أَشْرَكُوا لَوْ شَاءَ اللَّهُ مَا أَشْرَكْنَا وَلَا آبَاؤُنَا وَلَا حَرَّمْنَا مِن شَيْءٍ ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ كَذَّبَ الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِهِمْ حَتَّىٰ ذَاقُوا بَأْسَنَا ۗ قُلْ هَلْ عِندَكُم مِّنْ عِلْمٍ فَتُخْرِجُوهُ لَنَا ۖ إِن تَتَّبِعُونَ إِلَّا الظَّنَّ وَإِنْ أَنتُمْ إِلَّا تَخْرُصُونَ

The people who set up partners (with Allah) shall say, “Had Allah willed, we would not have established partners with Allah, nor would our forefathers, nor would we prohibit anything.” Thus did those before them lied, until they incurred our retribution. Say, “Do you have any knowledge that you can show us? You follow nothing but conjecture; and you only make guesses.”

The people who share others’ orders with Allah’s orders, bring forth strange logics in matter of declaration of lawful and unlawful things, which they do on their own accord without authority from Allah. Their logic is that what they are doing  is as per will of Allah. In other words, Allah would have prevented them to do what they are doing, if it were not consented by Allah. 

Regarding haram and halal, people say absurd things and make a long list of haram items, so Allah says sarcastically how do you make such absurd statements ?Allah forbids in declaring halal and haram food without an authority from Him i.e from The Book. The following ayahs show the tone of anger and sarcasm by Allah to those who do the same in issuing strange fatwas in matters of declaring food lawful or otherwise:

6:143-144  ثَمَانِيَةَ أَزْوَاجٍ ۖ مِّنَ الضَّأْنِ اثْنَيْنِ وَمِنَ الْمَعْزِ اثْنَيْنِ ۗ قُلْ آلذَّكَرَيْنِ حَرَّمَ أَمِ الْأُنثَيَيْنِ أَمَّا اشْتَمَلَتْ عَلَيْهِ أَرْحَامُ الْأُنثَيَيْنِ ۖ نَبِّئُونِي بِعِلْمٍ إِن كُنتُمْ صَادِقِينَ  وَمِنَ الْإِبِلِ اثْنَيْنِ وَمِنَ الْبَقَرِ اثْنَيْنِ ۗ قُلْ آلذَّكَرَيْنِ حَرَّمَ أَمِ الْأُنثَيَيْنِ أَمَّا اشْتَمَلَتْ عَلَيْهِ أَرْحَامُ الْأُنثَيَيْنِ ۖ أَمْ كُنتُمْ شُهَدَاءَ إِذْ وَصَّاكُمُ اللَّهُ بِهَٰذَا ۚ فَمَنْ أَظْلَمُ مِمَّنِ افْتَرَىٰ عَلَى اللَّهِ كَذِبًا لِّيُضِلَّ النَّاسَ بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الظَّالِمِينَ

Eight pairs: from the sheep two, and from the goats two; say, “Is it the two males that He forbade or the two females, or what the womb of the two females bore? Inform me if you are truthful!” Of camels a pair, and oxen a pair; say, has He forbidden the two males, or the two females, or (the young) which the wombs of the two females enclose? – Were you present when Allah ordered you such a thing? But who does more wrong than one who invents a lie against Allah, to lead astray men without knowledge? For Allah does not guide the nation of wrongdoers.

In a sarcastic way, emphasizing the absurdity of the people who issues fatwas of haram and halal foods, Allah directs more detailed questions to the proponents of those prohibitions. These verses in a linguistic way expose those who follow man-made fabrications based on an assumption that, “Allah’s Word is not detailed.” and details are provided in books other than Allah’s book.  Allah informs us that His word is sufficiently detailed, and there is no limit for details if one wishes to ask more by asking further un-necessary questions.

6:140  قَدْ خَسِرَ الَّذِينَ قَتَلُوا أَوْلَادَهُمْ سَفَهًا بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ وَحَرَّمُوا مَا رَزَقَهُمُ اللَّهُ افْتِرَاءً عَلَى اللَّهِ ۚ قَدْ ضَلُّوا وَمَا كَانُوا مُهْتَدِينَ

Losers are those who slayed their children with foolishness, without knowledge, and forbade food which Allah has provided for them, inventing (lies) against Allah. They have indeed gone astray and indeed they are not guided.

The partners of Allah are those who glorify the ware fare and encourage people to willfully send their off-springs to be killed in false holy wars. They are the same people who issues fatwas of the legality of food for which they cannot present evidence from Allah’s book. 

5:5  الْيَوْمَ أُحِلَّ لَكُمُ الطَّيِّبَاتُ ۖ وَطَعَامُ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ حِلٌّ لَّكُمْ وَطَعَامُكُمْ حِلٌّ لَّهُمْ ….

This day are (all) things good and pure made lawful unto you. The food of the People of the Book is lawful unto you and yours is lawful unto them.

The day on which you realize that you have to take directions from Allah’s book and leave the restrictions on food which are not based on Allah’s book, all good tayyab foods becomes lawful to you. Also, the food of the people of the book is lawful to you and your food is lawful to them, so this point should not become a constraint in socializing with them. Please note that people of the book are those who adhere to the Book of Allah, not other books which are not given by Allah e.g Bible.

6:136  وَجَعَلُوا لِلَّهِ مِمَّا ذَرَأَ مِنَ الْحَرْثِ وَالْأَنْعَامِ نَصِيبًا فَقَالُوا هَٰذَا لِلَّهِ بِزَعْمِهِمْ وَهَٰذَا لِشُرَكَائِنَا ۖ فَمَا كَانَ لِشُرَكَائِهِمْ فَلَا يَصِلُ إِلَى اللَّهِ ۖ وَمَا كَانَ لِلَّهِ فَهُوَ يَصِلُ إِلَىٰ شُرَكَائِهِمْ ۗ سَاءَ مَا يَحْكُمُونَ

Out of what Allah has produced of tilth and cattle, they assigned Him a share. They say, according to their fancies. “This is for Allah, and this” – for our “partners”! but the share of their” partners “does not reach Allah, while the share of Allah reaches their “partners” ! evil (and unjust) is what they order.

Some food and animals are reserved for some saints and during the ritual of ‘nazar’ portions of these foods are segregated and names of Allah and the partners (supposed saints) are proclaimed on these portions of foods. 

6:138 وَقَالُوا هَٰذِهِ أَنْعَامٌ وَحَرْثٌ حِجْرٌ لَّا يَطْعَمُهَا إِلَّا مَن نَّشَاءُ بِزَعْمِهِمْ وَأَنْعَامٌ حُرِّمَتْ ظُهُورُهَا وَأَنْعَامٌ لَّا يَذْكُرُونَ اسْمَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهَا افْتِرَاءً عَلَيْهِ ۚ سَيَجْزِيهِم بِمَا كَانُوا يَفْتَرُونَ

And they say that such and such cattle and crops are taboo, and none should eat of them except those whom – so they say – We wish; further, there are cattle forbidden to ride, and cattle on which, the name of Allah is not pronounced; – inventions against Allah’s name. Soon will He requite them for their inventions.

There are some animals which are Halal, however they don’t slaughter them because they consider them to be Haram. Some animals used for riding are reserved for processions and they are not used for riding. They give ‘Nazar’ on some food items and only caste members can eat from ‘Nazar’ its not open for all public to eat. These people are exposed in above ayat. 

16:56  وَيَجْعَلُونَ لِمَا لَا يَعْلَمُونَ نَصِيبًا مِّمَّا رَزَقْنَاهُمْ ۗ تَاللَّهِ لَتُسْأَلُنَّ عَمَّا كُنتُمْ تَفْتَرُونَ

And they assign, to those they do not know, a portion of their sustenance! bestowed by Allah. , you shall certainly be called to account for your false inventions.

In ayat 2:219 , Quran informs us that khmar/intoxicants have big sin in them and in ayat 7:33, it states that big sins are forbidden. 

2:219 يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِ ۖ قُلْ فِيهِمَا إِثْمٌ كَبِيرٌ وَمَنَافِعُ لِلنَّاسِ وَإِثْمُهُمَا أَكْبَرُ مِن نَّفْعِهِمَا ۗ وَيَسْأَلُونَكَ مَاذَا يُنفِقُونَ قُلِ الْعَفْوَ ۗ كَذَٰلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّهُ لَكُمُ الْآيَاتِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَفَكَّرُونَ

They ask you concerning intoxicants and gambling. Say. “In them is great sin, and some profit, for people; but the sin is greater than the profit. They ask you concerning what they should spend? Say “pardon/overlook”, likewise Allah clarifies His ayahs/signs to you so that you may ponder.

7:33 قُلْ إِنَّمَا حَرَّمَ رَبِّيَ الْفَوَاحِشَ مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا وَمَا بَطَنَ وَالْإِثْمَ وَالْبَغْيَ بِغَيْرِ الْحَقِّ وَأَن تُشْرِكُوا بِاللَّهِ مَا لَمْ يُنَزِّلْ بِهِ سُلْطَانًا وَأَن تَقُولُوا عَلَى اللَّهِ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ

Say. my Lord has indeed forbidden shameful acts, whether open or secret; sins and unjust trespassing; and that you associate partners with Allah, for whom He has sent down no authority; and that you say things about Allah that you do not know.

‘Al-Amana’, the Trust

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

Ayat 33:72 in Al-Quran mentions a trust (amana). In this post we will see from Al-Quran, what is this trust that is mentioned in this ayat.

33:72 إِنَّا عَرَضْنَا الْأَمَانَةَ عَلَى السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَالْجِبَالِ فَأَبَيْنَ أَن يَحْمِلْنَهَا وَأَشْفَقْنَ مِنْهَا وَحَمَلَهَا الْإِنسَانُ ۖ إِنَّهُ كَانَ ظَلُومًا جَهُولًا

Indeed we offered ‘the trust’ to the heavens and the earth and the mountains; but they refused to undertake it, being afraid there-of, but ‘the man’ undertook it;- He was indeed unjust and ignorant.

What was this trust that God entrusted to man which is mentioned in above ayat?

The ayat immediately following 33:72 explains that because of this ‘trust’/’amana’ which was accepted by man, Allah is to take accountability of man i.e rewards of good deeds and penalty for wrong doings. The accountability comes with the ability and responsibility i.e intelligence to judge and free will to act. Therefore this ‘trust’ which is mentioned in ayat 33:72 should be the ‘free will’ which is granted to humans by Allah.

33:73 لِّيُعَذِّبَ اللَّهُ الْمُنَافِقِينَ وَالْمُنَافِقَاتِ وَالْمُشْرِكِينَ وَالْمُشْرِكَاتِ وَيَتُوبَ اللَّهُ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتِ ۗ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا

So that Allah punishes the hypocrites, men and women and the associaters, men and women, and Allah turns in mercy to the believing men and women, for Allah is forgiving, merciful.

Life forms in the Universe other than Earth

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

Till now we don’t know for sure of life forms existing on any place other than the planet earth in the universe. However, the sheer size of the universe, does not preclude the possibility of finding planets  similar to earth where life can possibly exist. 

42:29  وَمِنْ آيَاتِهِ خَلْقُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَمَا بَثَّ فِيهِمَا مِن دَابَّةٍ ۚ وَهُوَ عَلَىٰ جَمْعِهِمْ إِذَا يَشَاءُ قَدِيرٌ

And among His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the living creatures that He has scattered through both of them and He has power to gather them together when He wills.

The above ayat from al-Quran informs us that there are creatures scattered in both the skies and the earth. So, it means that in addition to earth there are life forms existing else-where in the universe. 

55:29 يَسْأَلُهُ مَن فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ ۚ كُلَّ يَوْمٍ هُوَ فِي شَأْنٍ

Of Him, seeks every creature in the heavens and on earth. He is in a splendor every day.

The above ayat tells us that every one in the heavens and earth ask from their one Lord sustainer.

39:68 وَنُفِخَ فِي الصُّورِ فَصَعِقَ مَن فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَن فِي الْأَرْضِ إِلَّا مَن شَاءَ اللَّهُ ۖ ثُمَّ نُفِخَ فِيهِ أُخْرَىٰ فَإِذَا هُمْ قِيَامٌ يَنظُرُونَ

The trumpet will be blown, when all that are in the heavens and on earth will swoon, except whom Allah wills (to exempt). Then a second one will be blown, when, behold, they will be standing and looking on!

The above ayat informs of the time when soor/trumpet shall be blown. At that time everyone in the skies and on the earth will transform to a different state.

The blowing of trumpet is a metaphor used in Quran when some-thing transforms to another form. For example, Quran tell us of blowing of ‘Spirit’ into Adam’s body form, which transformed him to a new being. Similarly, when the Soor/trumpet will be blown, the forms of everyone on the earth and skies will be transformed to a different state.

24:41 أَلَمْ تَرَ أَنَّ اللَّهَ يُسَبِّحُ لَهُ مَن فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَالطَّيْرُ صَافَّاتٍ ۖ كُلٌّ قَدْ عَلِمَ صَلَاتَهُ وَتَسْبِيحَهُ ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَلِيمٌ بِمَا يَفْعَلُونَ

Have you not seen that whosoever is in the skies and in the earth, praise for Allah and the birds (pray) in the rows. Everyone knows his salat/prayers and his praise, and Allah knows with what they do.

Those who are in the skies and those on earth praise for Allah by acting on the nature instilled by Allah in them. For the humans and Jinns who are endowed by intellect and free will, they praise Allah by appreciating his Grandeur and the bounties he has provided for them.

42:5 تَكَادُ السَّمَاوَاتُ يَتَفَطَّرْنَ مِن فَوْقِهِنَّ ۚ وَالْمَلَائِكَةُ يُسَبِّحُونَ بِحَمْدِ رَبِّهِمْ وَيَسْتَغْفِرُونَ لِمَن فِي الْأَرْضِ ۗ أَلَا إِنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ

The heavens to be almost rent asunder from above them and the angels celebrate the praises of their Lord, and pray for forgiveness for (all) beings on earth. Behold! Verily Allah is He, the Forgiving, Merciful.

The angels seek forgiveness for those on earth. Implies the creatures in other parts of the universe don’t carry the free will and responsibility that humans and Jinns have. Asking forgiveness makes sense for those who are responsible for their deeds.

1:2 الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ

The praise is for Allah, the Lord/Sustainer of all the worlds.

Allah is the lord and sustainer of all worlds. Worlds is used as plural, implying that in addition to the world that we live in, there should be other worlds inhabited by other creations of God.

Quran says that all living things are created from water. Scientists as well, know that if they are able to find water in any other planet in the universe, chances of finding life there would be very high. So the search is ongoing for finding planets inhabiting water.

21:30 أَوَلَمْ يَرَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا أَنَّ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ كَانَتَا رَتْقًا فَفَتَقْنَاهُمَا ۖ وَجَعَلْنَا مِنَ الْمَاءِ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ حَيٍّ ۖ أَفَلَا يُؤْمِنُونَ

Do not the rejecters see that the skies and the earth were joined together before We split them asunder. We started from water every living thing. Will they not then believe?

Hajj procedure in Al-Quran

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

In previous posts we had learned that the first ‘House’ established for man-kind by Allah, is in ‘Bakka’ (Makkah). This House is guidance for all believers. The systems of ‘Salat’ and ‘Tawaf/Hajj’ have been established in this House for all times.  The guidance which mankind is to take from this House of God, is to follow the sunnat/practice of the system of ‘Salat’ and ‘Hajj’ established at this House of the Lord. These systems are already established at the House for those who want to take guidance.

3:96-97  إِنَّ أَوَّلَ بَيْتٍ وُضِعَ لِلنَّاسِ لَلَّذِي بِبَكَّةَ مُبَارَكًا وَهُدًى لِّلْعَالَمِينَ  فِيهِ آيَاتٌ بَيِّنَاتٌ مَّقَامُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ ۖ وَمَن دَخَلَهُ كَانَ آمِنًا ۗ وَلِلَّهِ عَلَى النَّاسِ حِجُّ الْبَيْتِ مَنِ اسْتَطَاعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلًا ۚ وَمَن كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَنِيٌّ عَنِ الْعَالَمِينَ

Without doubt, the first House appointed for mankind is that at Bakka (Makkah); blessed and of guidance for all worlds. In it are clear ayahs / signs, the standing position of Ibrahim; whoever enters it attains security. And for Allah is pilgrimage of the House on people, those who can afford the journey, but if anyone denies, surely Allah is not in need of any in the worlds.

It is upon mankind to do pilgrimage of the House of Allah, whoever has the capacity to perform Hajj. 

The purpose of Hajj is the training of nafs, i.e self control in difficult situations. People have to exercise restraint and control their anger and impulses, while being out of their comfort zones and showing empathy towards their brethren who are in similar difficult situations. 

The system of Hajj is established in Makkah for all times. The months of Hajj are known to believers. They were known to believers in the past as well. So, anyone who makes an intention of performing Hajj, should align himself to the task with no bickering, fighting and unnecessary argumentation in these months. The goal is to get closer to Allah.

2:197  الْحَجُّ أَشْهُرٌ مَّعْلُومَاتٌ ۚ فَمَن فَرَضَ فِيهِنَّ الْحَجَّ فَلَا رَفَثَ وَلَا فُسُوقَ وَلَا جِدَالَ فِي الْحَجِّ ۗ وَمَا تَفْعَلُوا مِنْ خَيْرٍ يَعْلَمْهُ اللَّهُ ۗ وَتَزَوَّدُوا فَإِنَّ خَيْرَ الزَّادِ التَّقْوَىٰ ۚ وَاتَّقُونِ يَا أُولِي الْأَلْبَابِ

The months of Hajj/Pilgrimage are known, so whosoever imposes Hajj / Pilgrimage (on himself) in them, he should not commit obscenity nor commit immoralities and no bickering in the Hajj / Pilgrimage. And what you do from goodness, Allah knows it. And take provision, so surely the best of the provisions is to take guard and take guard from Me O’ you who posses the core (of Knowledge/Spirit of the Book)

Prophet Ibrahim (a.s) is the Imam/leader for the mankind. He has been ordered to purify the House for the ‘salat’ and ‘tawaf’ around this House (2:125). People who intend for the Hajj would seek many means of transportation to plan their arrival to the sacred place. 

22:27  وَأَذِّن فِي النَّاسِ بِالْحَجِّ يَأْتُوكَ رِجَالًا وَعَلَىٰ كُلِّ ضَامِرٍ يَأْتِينَ مِن كُلِّ فَجٍّ عَمِيقٍ

“And proclaim the Pilgrimage to mankind. They will come to thee on foot and riding from all remote places.”

When pilgrims actually reach the starting place of Hajj known as ‘Miqat’ they attain the state of ‘ahram/hurum’. Hurum state forbids them killing any animal or even insects within the ‘Haram area’ i.e the places of Hajj. As a large number of pilgrims visit the place every year, this stipulation is necessary in order to preserve the place and its flora and fauna.

5:95  يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَقْتُلُوا الصَّيْدَ وَأَنتُمْ حُرُمٌ ۚ وَمَن قَتَلَهُ مِنكُم مُّتَعَمِّدًا فَجَزَاءٌ مِّثْلُ مَا قَتَلَ مِنَ النَّعَمِ يَحْكُمُ بِهِ ذَوَا عَدْلٍ مِّنكُمْ هَدْيًا بَالِغَ الْكَعْبَةِ أَوْ كَفَّارَةٌ طَعَامُ مَسَاكِينَ أَوْ عَدْلُ ذَٰلِكَ صِيَامًا لِّيَذُوقَ وَبَالَ أَمْرِهِ ۗ عَفَا اللَّهُ عَمَّا سَلَفَ ۚ وَمَنْ عَادَ فَيَنتَقِمُ اللَّهُ مِنْهُ ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَزِيزٌ ذُو انتِقَامٍ

O you people who believe! Do not kill the game/hunt when you are in Ahram/pilgrim state. If any one does so intentionally, the compensation is an offering similar to the animal killed, brought to the Ka’ba, as adjudged by two just honest men among you; or the atonement is the feeding of the indigents; or its equivalent in fasts. That he may taste of the penalty of his deed. Allah forgave what was past. For the one who repeats, Allah will avenge from him and Allah is exalted, Lord of retribution.

For the pilgrims intending Hajj, keeping sanctity of this sacred place and all its symbols such as ‘Safaa’, ‘Marwa’, ‘tawaf’, etc, is important. The people of various groups and sects will come there with a common cause of getting good pleasure of Allah. At Hajj, the pilgrims are not to show acrimony with any group even if they have problems and hatred with that group before Hajj. In all matters of piety and righteousness, pilgrims are ordered to co-operate with one another and not to co-operate in any matter of rancor, hatred and sin.

5:2  يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُحِلُّوا شَعَائِرَ اللَّهِ وَلَا الشَّهْرَ الْحَرَامَ وَلَا الْهَدْيَ وَلَا الْقَلَائِدَ وَلَا آمِّينَ الْبَيْتَ الْحَرَامَ يَبْتَغُونَ فَضْلًا مِّن رَّبِّهِمْ وَرِضْوَانًا ۚ وَإِذَا حَلَلْتُمْ فَاصْطَادُوا ۚ وَلَا يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شَنَآنُ قَوْمٍ أَن صَدُّوكُمْ عَنِ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ أَن تَعْتَدُوا ۘ وَتَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْبِرِّ وَالتَّقْوَىٰ ۖ وَلَا تَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۖ إِنَّ اللَّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ

O you people who believe! Do not violate the sanctity of the symbols of Allah, nor of the sacred month, nor of the gift (animals for sacrifice) nor the garlands (crowd formation of garland shape around Kaaba in Tawaf), nor the people resorting to the sacred house, seeking the bounty and good pleasure of their Lord. But when you are clear (of the sacred precincts and of pilgrim garb), you may hunt and let not the hatred of some people in preventing of the Sacred Mosque, lead you to transgression. Co-operate in righteousness and piety, but do-not co-operate in sin and rancor. Fear Allah, for Allah is strict in punishment.

Allah has bound everyone’s hands in the valley of Makkah from fighting in the sacred valley. So whoever succeeds in reaching the valley, then he should not fight and argue with those present there.    

48:24  وَهُوَ الَّذِي كَفَّ أَيْدِيَهُمْ عَنكُمْ وَأَيْدِيَكُمْ عَنْهُم بِبَطْنِ مَكَّةَ مِن بَعْدِ أَنْ أَظْفَرَكُمْ عَلَيْهِمْ ۚ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرًا

And it is He Who has restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the belly of Makkah, after that He made you successful over them, and Allah sees well all that you do.

After attainting the condition of ‘Hurum’ i.e abiding by the ‘Ahram’ they need to do ‘tawaf’ of the House. This is the first step of the ‘Hajj’ process.

22:29  ثُمَّ لْيَقْضُوا تَفَثَهُمْ وَلْيُوفُوا نُذُورَهُمْ وَلْيَطَّوَّفُوا بِالْبَيْتِ الْعَتِيقِ

Then they should end their uncleanliness and they should complete their vows, and they should circumambulate the Ancient House.

15:87  وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَاكَ سَبْعًا مِّنَ الْمَثَانِي وَالْقُرْآنَ الْعَظِيمَ

And We have bestowed upon thee the Seven repeated ones and the Grand Al-Qur’an.

During  Hajj and Umra, the 7 circles around the Kaaba are repeated by pilgrims. Pilgrim should recite ‘prayers/duas’ advised by Allah in Quran as practice of messengers and people. 

18:158  إِنَّ الصَّفَا وَالْمَرْوَةَ مِن شَعَائِرِ اللَّهِ ۖ فَمَنْ حَجَّ الْبَيْتَ أَوِ اعْتَمَرَ فَلَا جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِ أَن يَطَّوَّفَ بِهِمَا ۚ وَمَن تَطَوَّعَ خَيْرًا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ شَاكِرٌ عَلِيمٌ

Surely! Safa and Marwah are among the symbols of Allah, so if any who goes for Hajj or Umra of the House,  It is no sin on him, that he goes round them and whoever voluntarily does good, so surely Allah is He, who is thankful and knowing

After ‘tawaf’ of ‘Kaaba’, the pilgrims perform ‘tawaf’ of ‘Safa’ and ‘Marwa’ the two raised symbols near Kaaba.

After completing Tawaf, pilgrims move to their camps and from there they present them selves in the plains of ‘Arafat’ on the day of Hajj. This is the second and most important step of ‘Hajj’ called ‘Hajj e Akbar’. During that long day of ‘Hajje Akbar’ pilgrims are advised to get rid of any idols/associates in their psychology by identifying them and symbolically stoning them in coming days of Hajj.  

2:198  لَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَبْتَغُوا فَضْلًا مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ ۚ فَإِذَا أَفَضْتُم مِّنْ عَرَفَاتٍ فَاذْكُرُوا اللَّهَ عِندَ الْمَشْعَرِ الْحَرَامِ ۖ وَاذْكُرُوهُ كَمَا هَدَاكُمْ وَإِن كُنتُم مِّن قَبْلِهِ لَمِنَ الضَّالِّينَ

There is no blame on you if you seek of the bounty of your Lord (during pilgrimage). Then when you spread from ‘Arafat’, you all remember Allah at the ‘Mash’aril Haram’, and remember Him as He has directed you, even though, before this, you were the strayers.

2:199  ثُمَّ أَفِيضُوا مِنْ حَيْثُ أَفَاضَ النَّاسُ وَاسْتَغْفِرُوا اللَّهَ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

Then you shall disperse from where the people dispersed, and seek God’s forgiveness; God is surely Forgiving, Merciful.

From ‘Arafat’ people will move in large numbers towards a place called ‘Muzdalfa’. ‘Muzdalfa’ and ‘Mina’ are two small temporary dwellings close together. In Quran they are referenced as ‘Mash-aril Haram’, i.e sacred place for getting  consciousness of Allah by remembering Him.  In ‘Muzdalfa’, people spend the night under the open sky remembering Allah and also collect pebbles in preparation of ‘Jamrat/ceremonial stoning of so called ‘Satan’.  The staying in Muzdalfa is the 3rd step of Hajj.

It is advisable to do self introspection within oneself for any psychological idols in one’s self and then imagine these idols being broken while stoning them in coming days at ‘Jamrat’. The ‘idols’ residing deep in one’s psyche are mainly emotional attachments named in Quran as ‘Desires’, ‘Longings’, ‘Pride’, ‘Love’ etc.  It is only Allah who can kill the idols in your psychology by His will. The idols mentioned in Quran are detailed in previous post (

8:17  فَلَمْ تَقْتُلُوهُمْ وَلَٰكِنَّ اللَّهَ قَتَلَهُمْ ۚ وَمَا رَمَيْتَ إِذْ رَمَيْتَ وَلَٰكِنَّ اللَّهَ رَمَىٰ ۚ وَلِيُبْلِيَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ مِنْهُ بَلَاءً حَسَنًا ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ

It is not you who killed them; but it was Allah who killed them. And you did not throw pebbles when you threw them but Allah did threw the pebbles in order that He might test the believers by a gracious trial. Verily Allah hears and knows (all things).

After spending night in Muzdalfa the pilgrims move to Mina and stone the Jamrat from the pebbles they collected the night before to perform 4th step of Hajj. The symbolic stoning of the three ‘Jamrat’ (commonly known as Satan) is the psychological killing of idols in one’s psyche. The ‘illahs’ and false gods reside in one’s psychology. During Hajj, when one is away from his business activities, there is an opportunity to do self retrospection and identity the idols within oneself. Only by the leave of Allah, the false gods in one’s psyche can be killed. The false gods lives in our psyche and Satan instigates them by playing with our emotions. Pilgrims throw pebbles at Satan as a symbol of casting him away and the false gods he wants us to associate with.

48:25  هُمُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا وَصَدُّوكُمْ عَنِ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَالْهَدْيَ مَعْكُوفًا أَن يَبْلُغَ مَحِلَّهُ ۚ وَلَوْلَا رِجَالٌ مُّؤْمِنُونَ وَنِسَاءٌ مُّؤْمِنَاتٌ لَّمْ تَعْلَمُوهُمْ أَن تَطَئُوهُمْ فَتُصِيبَكُم مِّنْهُم مَّعَرَّةٌ بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ ۖ لِّيُدْخِلَ اللَّهُ فِي رَحْمَتِهِ مَن يَشَاءُ ۚ لَوْ تَزَيَّلُوا لَعَذَّبْنَا الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْهُمْ عَذَابًا أَلِيمًا

They are the ones who rejected and prevented you from the Sacred Mosque and the gifts/sacrificial animals, detained from reaching their place. Had there not been believing men and believing women whom you did not know that you were trampling down and on whose account a crime would have accrued to you without (your) knowledge, that He may admit to His Mercy whom He will. If they had been apart, We should certainly have punished the Unbelievers among them with a grievous Punishment.

The group who dissuades from Hajj as being a ritualistic practice of going to Makkah; they also cut off the connection of the gift of sacrificial animals with the practice of Hajj. Allah would have punished this group, if it were not that some believing men and women are mixed up with this group. Ayas 2:196 and 22:33 establish the connection of gift of sacrificial animals with the practice of Hajj.

2:196  وَأَتِمُّوا الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلَّهِ ۚ فَإِنْ أُحْصِرْتُمْ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ ۖ وَلَا تَحْلِقُوا رُءُوسَكُمْ حَتَّىٰ يَبْلُغَ الْهَدْيُ مَحِلَّهُ ۚ فَمَن كَانَ مِنكُم مَّرِيضًا أَوْ بِهِ أَذًى مِّن رَّأْسِهِ فَفِدْيَةٌ مِّن صِيَامٍ أَوْ صَدَقَةٍ أَوْ نُسُكٍ ۚ فَإِذَا أَمِنتُمْ فَمَن تَمَتَّعَ بِالْعُمْرَةِ إِلَى الْحَجِّ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ ۚ فَمَن لَّمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلَاثَةِ أَيَّامٍ فِي الْحَجِّ وَسَبْعَةٍ إِذَا رَجَعْتُمْ ۗ تِلْكَ عَشَرَةٌ كَامِلَةٌ ۗ ذَٰلِكَ لِمَن لَّمْ يَكُنْ أَهْلُهُ حَاضِرِي الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ

And complete the Hajj and Umra for Allah and if you are prevented, then give it what is easy from the hadiya / gift, and do not shave your heads until the offering reaches its place. And if any of you is ill, or has an ailment in his head, (He should) in compensation either fast, or give sadaqa, or correcting act; and when you are in peaceful conditions (again), if any one wishes to continue the ‘umra on to the hajj, He must make an offering, such as he can afford, but if he cannot afford it, He should fast three days during the hajj and seven days on his return, Making ten days in all. This is for those whose household is not in (the precincts of) the Sacred Mosque. And fear Allah, and know that Allah Is strict in punishment.

After presenting the gift of sacrificial animal, the pilgrims shave their heads. After that the pilgrims go to  Makkah and  circulate the Kaaba seven times and perform Saa’y between hills of Safa and Marwa which is the fifth step of Hajj.  They then drink from Zam-zam well and return to Mina.

Those who can not afford to offer a gift of sacrificial animal, they would compensate by fasting 3 days in Hajj and 7 more when they return home. Those who are unable to shave their heads due to some ailment they have to compensate with Sadaqa or with fasting as described above i.e three plus seven fasts. 

48:27  لَّقَدْ صَدَقَ اللَّهُ رَسُولَهُ الرُّؤْيَا بِالْحَقِّ ۖ لَتَدْخُلُنَّ الْمَسْجِدَ الْحَرَامَ إِن شَاءَ اللَّهُ آمِنِينَ مُحَلِّقِينَ رُءُوسَكُمْ وَمُقَصِّرِينَ لَا تَخَافُونَ ۖ فَعَلِمَ مَا لَمْ تَعْلَمُوا فَجَعَلَ مِن دُونِ ذَٰلِكَ فَتْحًا قَرِيبًا

Allah has indeed fulfil the vision of His messenger with truth,  If Allah wills, definitely you shall enter the Sacred/Forbidden Mosque in security without fear, your heads shaved and (Salah/Prayer) curtailed/shortened. For He knows what you know not, and He made besides that, an opening nearby.

Pilgrims then carry on from Makkah to stay in Mina for two to three days and they again stone the ‘Jamrat’ to each of the three pillars on 11th and 12th of Dhul-Hijjah, which is the sixth step of Hajj.

2:203  وَاذْكُرُوا اللَّهَ فِي أَيَّامٍ مَّعْدُودَاتٍ ۚ فَمَن تَعَجَّلَ فِي يَوْمَيْنِ فَلَا إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ وَمَن تَأَخَّرَ فَلَا إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ ۚ لِمَنِ اتَّقَىٰ ۗ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّكُمْ إِلَيْهِ تُحْشَرُونَ

And remember Allah in the appointed days. Thus if any one hastens in two days, there is no blame on him, and if any one delays, there is no blame on him, if he does it for Taqwa. And take guard of Allah, and know that you will surely be gathered towards Him.

After completing this ritual, pilgrims return to Makkah and perform the final Tawaaf of Kaaba as a ‘Farewell Tawaaf’ in Masjid al-Haram. This marks the end of Hajj.

2:200  فَإِذَا قَضَيْتُم مَّنَاسِكَكُمْ فَاذْكُرُوا اللَّهَ كَذِكْرِكُمْ آبَاءَكُمْ أَوْ أَشَدَّ ذِكْرًا ۗ فَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا وَمَا لَهُ فِي الْآخِرَةِ مِنْ خَلَاقٍ

So when you have completed your rites, remember Allah, as you remember your ancestors,- even more than their remembrance. There are people who say. “Our Lord! Give us (your bounties) in this world!” but they will have no portion in the Hereafter.

After completing the Hajj rites pilgrim should engage in remembrance of Allah. Allah’s remembrance should not be some repetitive chants, but more like intelligent discourse as some one who takes pride in talking about good deeds of his ancestor. 

It is the usual practice of pilgrims to visit the mosque known as prophet’s (pbuh) mosque in Madinah which is about 400 km from Makkah and people witness the same blessings and atmosphere there as well. The atmosphere and blessings surrounding these two mosques are unique in the world. No other mosque in the world can boast of similar blessings which is divinely bestowed on these two mosques. 

17:1  سُبْحَانَ الَّذِي أَسْرَىٰ بِعَبْدِهِ لَيْلًا مِّنَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ إِلَى الْمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى الَّذِي بَارَكْنَا حَوْلَهُ لِنُرِيَهُ مِنْ آيَاتِنَا ۚ إِنَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْبَصِيرُ

Glory to He who took His servant for a Journey by night from the Sacred Mosque to the ‘far-off Mosque’, whose surroundings We blessed,- to show him some of Our Ayats/Signs. for He is the One Who hears and sees (all things).


There are three slight variations of Hajj depending upon if you do Umra and Hajj with one ‘ahram’ or separate and if one is resident of ‘Haram’ area. More information in Hajj booklets.  An example booklet link is given below:

7 Easy Steps of Hajj

Imam in Quran

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

‘Imam’ means leader, role model or ‘some one in front’. In this post we will see what Al-Quran says about the stature of ‘Imammat’ and who are the ‘Imams’ made by Allah:

17:71 يَوْمَ نَدْعُو كُلَّ أُنَاسٍ بِإِمَامِهِمْ ۖ فَمَنْ أُوتِيَ كِتَابَهُ بِيَمِينِهِ فَأُولَٰئِكَ يَقْرَءُونَ كِتَابَهُمْ وَلَا يُظْلَمُونَ فَتِيلًا

The day, We shall call together all human beings with their Imam, thus those who are given their book in their right, will read it, and they will not be dealt with unjustly.

As Imam is a role model who people follow, therefore on the day of judgement, people will be called with whom they were following in the world. So, whoever you will follow in the world will be called in the hereafter with you to testify.

Allah also has appointed some Imams/role models for people. There are also role models for rejecters of Allah who are called the Imams of fire. The description of both these type of Imams is provided in the book of Allah.

2:124 وَإِذِ ابْتَلَىٰ إِبْرَاهِيمَ رَبُّهُ بِكَلِمَاتٍ فَأَتَمَّهُنَّ ۖ قَالَ إِنِّي جَاعِلُكَ لِلنَّاسِ إِمَامًا ۖ قَالَ وَمِن ذُرِّيَّتِي ۖ قَالَ لَا يَنَالُ عَهْدِي الظَّالِمِينَ

And when his Lord put Ibrahim to trial with (Allah’s) words, thus he completed them. He said. “Surely I have made you the Imam for mankind”, he said “and from my offspring?” He said “My covenant shall not reach the oppressors.”

The above ayat informs that Allah has made messenger Ibrahim (a.s) as the Imam/role model for the mankind. Allah made Ibrahim (a.s) the Imam/leader/role model after testing him with His ‘Words’ and when Ibrahim (a.s) was true to the test, then he was made the Imam. The words of Allah are in His book. So humanity, if they are to follow Ibrahim (a.s) as their Imam, they should follow ‘Words of Allah’ and be true to them.

The personality of Ibrahim (a.s) to be followed is from Allah’s book to ensure that we are following the Imam made by Allah. If we follow the personality of Ibrahim (a.s) from other man made books and historical stories, then we will be following the Ibrahim of history.

The sunnat/practice of prophet Ibrahim (a.s) is called the best sunnat practice in below ayat.

60:4 قَدْ كَانَتْ لَكُمْ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ فِي إِبْرَاهِيمَ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ إِذْ قَالُوا لِقَوْمِهِمْ إِنَّا بُرَآءُ مِنكُمْ وَمِمَّا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ كَفَرْنَا بِكُمْ وَبَدَا بَيْنَنَا وَبَيْنَكُمُ الْعَدَاوَةُ وَالْبَغْضَاءُ أَبَدًا حَتَّىٰ تُؤْمِنُوا بِاللَّهِ وَحْدَهُ إِلَّا قَوْلَ إِبْرَاهِيمَ لِأَبِيهِ لَأَسْتَغْفِرَنَّ لَكَ وَمَا أَمْلِكُ لَكَ مِنَ اللَّهِ مِن شَيْءٍ ۖ رَّبَّنَا عَلَيْكَ تَوَكَّلْنَا وَإِلَيْكَ أَنَبْنَا وَإِلَيْكَ الْمَصِيرُ

Indeed there is for you, the most beautiful practice (Uswatun Hasana) in Ibrahim and those with him, when they said to their people: surely , We are clear of you and of whatever you serve besides Allah: We have rejected you, and there has begun, between us and you, enmity and rancor forever, unless you believe in Allah and Him alone, except saying of Ibraheem for his father,  Certainly I will ask forgiveness for you and I have no authority from Allah in anything for you, Our Lord! On you is our trust, and towards you we depute/represent, and towards you is our determination.

The sunnat of Ibrahim (a.s) to be followed as best practice is summarized in above ayat, which is to leave and not to serve any one which your nation serves beside Allah, i.e be primarily focused on Allah alone and don’t befriend those who associate others with Allah. Put your trust and expectations on Allah and always be returning to Him for all matters.

21:71-73 وَنَجَّيْنَاهُ وَلُوطًا إِلَى الْأَرْضِ الَّتِي بَارَكْنَا فِيهَا لِلْعَالَمِينَ وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ إِسْحَاقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ نَافِلَةً ۖ وَكُلًّا جَعَلْنَا صَالِحِينَ وَجَعَلْنَاهُمْ أَئِمَّةً يَهْدُونَ بِأَمْرِنَا وَأَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْهِمْ فِعْلَ الْخَيْرَاتِ وَإِقَامَ الصَّلَاةِ وَإِيتَاءَ الزَّكَاةِ ۖ وَكَانُوا لَنَا عَابِدِينَ

We delivered him (Ibrahim) and Lut to the land which We have blessed for all worlds. And We bestowed him with Ishaq and additionally Yaqub, and We made all of them righteous. And We made them the Imams that they guide with Our order and We inspired towards them, the doing of good deeds and establishment of As-salat/the prayer and giving of zakat/justification and to Us they served.

The above ayahs state that, Ibrahim (a.s), Lut (a.s), Ishaq (a.s) and Yaqub (a.s) were made Imams by Allah. They guided with the ‘Order’ of Allah. So, what we learned is that when Allah make Imams he tests with His Words and those who prove to be true to the ‘Words’ of Allah, they bocome Imams. The Imams guide with the ‘order’ of Allah. The Imams which are made by Allah, their message and their deeds are recorded in Allah’s book to become role model for believers. The Imams are always true to the Words/Kalam of Allah and guide with it. The Imamat is on merit and not based on progeny as prophet Lut (a.s) was not direct descendent of prophet Ibrahim (a.s).

For the believers, these prophets are the Imams/leaders and role models as per their deeds and sayings which are recorded in Allah’s book. If some one has a list of different Imams/leaders assumed to be divinely appointed Imams, which they are adhering to, without an authority in the book of Allah, then the below ayat will apply:

53:23 إِنْ هِيَ إِلَّا أَسْمَاءٌ سَمَّيْتُمُوهَا أَنتُمْ وَآبَاؤُكُم مَّا أَنزَلَ اللَّهُ بِهَا مِن سُلْطَانٍ ۚ إِن يَتَّبِعُونَ إِلَّا الظَّنَّ وَمَا تَهْوَى الْأَنفُسُ ۖ وَلَقَدْ جَاءَهُم مِّن رَّبِّهِمُ الْهُدَىٰ

They are but names you have named them, you and your fore-fathers, Allah has sent down with it, no authority. These people follow nothing but conjecture and what their nafs desire; and surely the guidance has come to them from their Lord.

For many people their Imam is just a name on the list of names. They don’t have any guidance or information from Imam to make the Imam their role model in their life. Often times, Imam is a small deity for them. They love and serve the personality of the Imam and not his guidance. While the characteristics of Imams of Allah as described in ayahs are that they guide with Allah’s Words and that their guidance is to be followed not their personality (6:83-90)

Also, Allah has made the Imams of rejecters and described their characteristics traits which should be avoided.

28:4- 6إِنَّ فِرْعَوْنَ عَلَا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَجَعَلَ أَهْلَهَا شِيَعًا يَسْتَضْعِفُ طَائِفَةً مِّنْهُمْ يُذَبِّحُ أَبْنَاءَهُمْ وَيَسْتَحْيِي نِسَاءَهُمْ ۚ إِنَّهُ كَانَ مِنَ الْمُفْسِدِينَ وَنُرِيدُ أَن نَّمُنَّ عَلَى الَّذِينَ اسْتُضْعِفُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَنَجْعَلَهُمْ أَئِمَّةً وَنَجْعَلَهُمُ الْوَارِثِينَ وَنُمَكِّنَ لَهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَنُرِيَ فِرْعَوْنَ وَهَامَانَ وَجُنُودَهُمَا مِنْهُم مَّا كَانُوا يَحْذَرُونَ

Truly Pharaoh elated himself in the land and broke up its people into sections, depressing a group among them,  their sons he slew, but he kept alive their women, for he was indeed from the corrupted. And We intended to be Gracious to those who were being depressed in the land, to make them Imams/leaders and make them inheritors. To establish a firm place for them in the land, and to show Pharaoh, Haman, and their hosts, the very things against which they were taking precautions.

Allah intended to make the Moosa (a.s) and his followers in bani-Israeel who followed prophets Moosa (a.s) despite extreme hardship and opposition from a powerful political and religious enemy, the Imams/role models and inheritors of the wealth left by Pharoah and his associates.

32:23-24 وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا مُوسَى الْكِتَابَ فَلَا تَكُن فِي مِرْيَةٍ مِّن لِّقَائِهِ ۖ وَجَعَلْنَاهُ هُدًى لِّبَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ وَجَعَلْنَا مِنْهُمْ أَئِمَّةً يَهْدُونَ بِأَمْرِنَا لَمَّا صَبَرُوا ۖ وَكَانُوا بِآيَاتِنَا يُوقِنُونَ

And without doubt, We gave Moosa the book, so you (the messenger), do not be in doubt from receiving it and We made it a guidance for the children of Israeel. And We appointed, from among them, Imams/leaders, giving guidance under Our command, when they persevered with patience and had belief in Our ayahs/signs.

When they persevered in patience and continued to believe in Allah’s ayahs and the book of Allah, Allah made Imams in Bani Israeel.

28:38-39 وَقَالَ فِرْعَوْنُ يَا أَيُّهَا الْمَلَأُ مَا عَلِمْتُ لَكُم مِّنْ إِلَٰهٍ غَيْرِي فَأَوْقِدْ لِي يَا هَامَانُ عَلَى الطِّينِ فَاجْعَل لِّي صَرْحًا لَّعَلِّي أَطَّلِعُ إِلَىٰ إِلَٰهِ مُوسَىٰ وَإِنِّي لَأَظُنُّهُ مِنَ الْكَاذِبِينَ وَاسْتَكْبَرَ هُوَ وَجُنُودُهُ فِي الْأَرْضِ بِغَيْرِ الْحَقِّ وَظَنُّوا أَنَّهُمْ إِلَيْنَا لَا يُرْجَعُونَ

Pharaoh said. “O Chiefs! no god do I know for you but myself,  therefore, O Haman! light me a (kiln to bake bricks) out of clay, and build me a palace, that I may get information about god of Moosa, although I think he (Moosa) is a liar!”. And he was arrogant in the land, beyond justification,- He and his hosts. they thought that they would not have to return to Us!

Allah has made, the Pharaoh and his cheifs, the Imams inviting to fire. They represent the characteristics of extreme arrogance, combined political and religious leadership, not submitting to Allah’s sovereignty and continued disobedience to Allah’s orders. They are unjust to their subjects, favoring one section of society over others. Any one following these Imams will lead himself to fire.

28:41 وَجَعَلْنَاهُمْ أَئِمَّةً يَدْعُونَ إِلَى النَّارِ ۖ وَيَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ لَا يُنصَرُونَ

And we made them (but)Imams/leaders inviting to the Fire; and on the day of judgment no help shall they find.

The imams are made on merit based on the deeds and character. People are not born imams based on birth right. If Allah has made pharoah Imam of fire, it is based on his bad deeds in the world. That does not make him a lieutenant of Allah in anyway. Similar is the case of good Imams made by Allah.

25:7274 وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَشْهَدُونَ الزُّورَ وَإِذَا مَرُّوا بِاللَّغْوِ مَرُّوا كِرَامًا وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا ذُكِّرُوا بِآيَاتِ رَبِّهِمْ لَمْ يَخِرُّوا عَلَيْهَا صُمًّا وَعُمْيَانًا وَالَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ رَبَّنَا هَبْ لَنَا مِنْ أَزْوَاجِنَا وَذُرِّيَّاتِنَا قُرَّةَ أَعْيُنٍ وَاجْعَلْنَا لِلْمُتَّقِينَ إِمَامًا

Those who witness no falsehood, and, if they pass by vain and frivolous talk, they pass by it with dignity. And when they are reminded with the ayas / signs of their Lord they do not fall over them, deaf and blind. And those who say, “O’ our Lord, grant for us the cooling of eyes from our pairs and our offspring and make us an Imam / Leader for those who guard.

Those people who don’t witness in vain and unfounded information and don’t fall on Allah’s ayahs like deaf and dumb without pondering with intellect over them, they are the ones who can hope to become Imams/ leaders of the muttaqin/guarded ones.

46:12 وَمِن قَبْلِهِ كِتَابُ مُوسَىٰ إِمَامًا وَرَحْمَةً ۚ وَهَٰذَا كِتَابٌ مُّصَدِّقٌ لِّسَانًا عَرَبِيًّا لِّيُنذِرَ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا وَبُشْرَىٰ لِلْمُحْسِنِينَ

And before him, book of Moosa, an Imam/leader and mercy and this book is confirming the Arabic Language, so as to warn those who are oppressors and a good news for those who are good doers.

The book of Allah is also an Imam. It give guidance, the orders of Allah, description and sayings of messengers as role models for mankind. The book of Moosa from before and this (same) book, are Imam/leaders/guides for mankind as well.

The messenger’s (pbuh) practice is a role model for mankind. The messenger as described in Quran not in history books.

33:21 لَّقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِي رَسُولِ اللَّهِ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ لِّمَن كَانَ يَرْجُو اللَّهَ وَالْيَوْمَ الْآخِرَ وَذَكَرَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا

Without doubt for you, in the Rasool/Messenger of Allah is most beautiful pattern, who has hope in Allah and the last day and frequently remembers Allah.

And the messenger (pbuh) declares that this Al-Quran is his path on which he invites. Therefore inviting towards the Quran is the best practice of the messenger (pbuh) as a role model.

12:107 قُلْ هَٰذِهِ سَبِيلِي أَدْعُو إِلَى اللَّهِ ۚ عَلَىٰ بَصِيرَةٍ أَنَا وَمَنِ اتَّبَعَنِي ۖ وَسُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ وَمَا أَنَا مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ

Say . “This is my way, on which I do invite towards Allah,- with perception,- I and whoever follows me. Glory to Allah! and I am not of the associaters.


There is another popular argument for divinity of ‘Imammat’ which is that Allah sent His book and with the book has sent prophets to explain the book to people. Allah never left the book alone, without a guardian and explainer of the book. Therefore a divinely appointed Imam always has to be present in all times with the book in an era in which prophets are not coming.

2:213 كَانَ النَّاسُ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً فَبَعَثَ اللَّهُ النَّبِيِّينَ مُبَشِّرِينَ وَمُنذِرِينَ وَأَنزَلَ مَعَهُمُ الْكِتَابَ بِالْحَقِّ لِيَحْكُمَ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ فِيمَا اخْتَلَفُوا فِيهِ ۚ وَمَا اخْتَلَفَ فِيهِ إِلَّا الَّذِينَ أُوتُوهُ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَاءَتْهُمُ الْبَيِّنَاتُ بَغْيًا بَيْنَهُمْ ۖ فَهَدَى اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لِمَا اخْتَلَفُوا فِيهِ مِنَ الْحَقِّ بِإِذْنِهِ ۗ وَاللَّهُ يَهْدِي مَن يَشَاءُ إِلَىٰ صِرَاطٍ مُّسْتَقِيمٍ

Mankind was one single nation, and Allah sent prophets with glad tidings and warnings; and with them He sent the book in truth, to judge between mankind in matters wherein they differed; but the people who were given it (the book) did not differ in it except after the clear signs came to them, to wrong one another (mutual animosity). Allah by His will; guided the believers to the Truth, in matters wherein they differed; For Allah guides whom He wills to a straight path.

The above ayat 2:213 states that Allah sent His book and along with the book he sent prophets to explain the book to people. The prophets that Allah sent were men. Why Allah sent men as prophets, as men interact with people of their kind and can explain the Book to people. The preservation of the Book and its Spirit is the responsibility of Allah.

17:95 قُل لَّوْ كَانَ فِي الْأَرْضِ مَلَائِكَةٌ يَمْشُونَ مُطْمَئِنِّينَ لَنَزَّلْنَا عَلَيْهِم مِّنَ السَّمَاءِ مَلَكًا رَّسُولًا

Say, “If there were on earth, angels walking about in security, We should certainly have sent them down from the heavens an angel for a messenger.”

The above ayat explains why a human messenger is sent on earth, because humans dwell on earth. Had the earth been inhabited by angels, then definitely an angel would have been sent to live among them and convey the message of God. So, going back to the above argument on Imamat, the Imam has to be a bashar/human being, with all the qualities of a human/bashar. A human/bashar cannot be invisible to humans, cannot be living for hundred of years in hiding, does not have supernatural powers to communicate with people in some mysterious ways. This kind of super-natural belief of an Imam would make him not a human but a small deity. The purpose of human prophets was to explain the Book to people. An assumed personality of ‘Imam’ which in hiding and with no evidence of interaction with people, is not a belief which Quran teaches. Inspiration of the Spirit of Allah’s Word on humans in a divine manner is the work of Allah beyond the power of a bashar/human. The burden of proof of a belief which cannot be justified from Quran will be on he who harbors such belief. They will have to bring evidence on the day of judgement, from the book of Allah which will be placed with the prophets giving witness from what they conveyed from the book to people.

39:69 وَأَشْرَقَتِ الْأَرْضُ بِنُورِ رَبِّهَا وَوُضِعَ الْكِتَابُ وَجِيءَ بِالنَّبِيِّينَ وَالشُّهَدَاءِ وَقُضِيَ بَيْنَهُم بِالْحَقِّ وَهُمْ لَا يُظْلَمُونَ

And the Earth will shine with the Light/Glory of its Lord: The book will be placed; the prophets and the witnesses will be brought forward and a just decision pronounced between them; and they will not be wronged.

For the believers, a few points are given below to ponder in order to check if their belief in ‘Imamat’ is as per Quran and sayings of the messenger (Al-Haqqa 69:40):

-The Imams for which Quran has provided authority, are they in their list of their Imams?

-The Imams that they include in their list of Imams, has any authority revealed by Allah in His Book?

Do they believe in superhuman Imam, i.e unable to err, having knowledge of the unseen etc. Quran informs that the messengers of Allah do not have superhuman qualities they are like normal bashar/humans, they can err and they don’t have knowledge of the unseen. (18:110, 6:50, 48:2). Then how a bashar/human Imam who is not mentioned in Quran be able to hear supplications, grant wishes to people who would write requests on pieces of paper and throw them in rivers and take guarantee for the safety of travelers. This sort of belief is definitely not of a ‘bashar’ Imam but more like of a ‘deity’ Imam.

Is the belief on divine appointment of Imams, emphasized in ayat 2:285, which summarizes important pillars of belief i.e belief in Allah, His angels, His books and His messengers:

2:285 آمَنَ الرَّسُولُ بِمَا أُنزِلَ إِلَيْهِ مِن رَّبِّهِ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ ۚ كُلٌّ آمَنَ بِاللَّهِ وَمَلَائِكَتِهِ وَكُتُبِهِ وَرُسُلِهِ لَا نُفَرِّقُ بَيْنَ أَحَدٍ مِّن رُّسُلِهِ ۚ وَقَالُوا سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا ۖ غُفْرَانَكَ رَبَّنَا وَإِلَيْكَ الْمَصِيرُ

The messenger believes in what has been revealed to him from his Lord, as do the believers. All of them believe in Allah, His angels, His books, and His messengers. “We make no distinction (they say) between any of His messengers.” And they say. “We hear, and we obey. (We seek) your forgiveness, our Lord, and to You is the destiny.”

Similar to the appointment of prophet Ibrahim (a.s) as Imam for mankind in ayat 2:124, Al-Quran mentions appointment of prophet Dawood (a.s) as His Khalifa (vicegerent) on earth (38:26). Is the divine appointment of ‘Khalifa’ also part of their belief system?

For those who believe that the book named ‘Nahjal Balagha’ contains sayings and writings of Hazrat Ali (KAW), states in the letter no. 6, that a person who is pronounced ‘Imam’ by the joint consultation of people will have Allah’s good pleasures on his stature.

The Preservation of Al-Quran (Hafs vs Warsh/other recitations)

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

This post is about the preservation of the message of Allah to mankind. We will review few frequently asked question such as; how and where, is the message of Allah preserved? In which form is this message sent to mankind? Can there be different versions of this message?

A popular notion is that the message of Allah is in ‘book’ form and the book is preserved by Allah, letter by letter and dot by dot in all versions of this book existing in the world. Another prevalent concept is that Al-Quran was revealed in seven different ‘ahruf’ and 10 different recitations. The 2nd statement is based on a hadith with not much details about what ‘ahruf’ means and not all scholars agreeing on the extent of differences in ‘ahruf’ and recitations.

Before we delve deeper into this topic, please understand that the word ‘Al-Quran’ means ‘The Reading’. When the message of Allah is read, it is ‘Al-Quran’. When it is written, it is ‘Al-Kitab’. Generally a copy of Quran in paper form is called a ‘Mus-haf’ while Al-Quran does not use the word ‘Mushaf’ itself. General public sometimes use the word ‘Quran’ interchangeably for the written book form, which is technically not correct. Another attribute in Arabic of Al-Quran is ‘Az-Zikr’ which means ‘The Remembrance’ or ‘The Admonition’. (List of attributes of the message of Allah is given in previous post of Al-Kitab on this site :

15:9 إِنَّا نَحْنُ نَزَّلْنَا الذِّكْرَ وَإِنَّا لَهُ لَحَافِظُونَ

Indeed, We have sent down the Remembrance; and indeed we are the guardians for it.

Al-Quran confirms that ‘Az-Zikr’ (The remembrance/admonition) is revealed by Allah and He is the one who protects it. This means that the message of Allah which He has sent to mankind is preserved by divine means. Therefore for those who seek this message, it will be accessible to them. This statement in Quran lead some people to believe that the Quran in written form whether in book form or digital format, cannot have any dissimilarity with other written copies. However, Allah has clarified in Quran that the paper form is made by people not by Him. So, Allah will preserve the remembrance/admonition, that He has revealed, and not the paper forms which people have copied. In fact the written individual copies of Al-Quran, or individual recitations, may contain dissimilarities with other copies.

Hafs, Warsh and other versions:

We find that there are different recitations of Al-Quran in exitance today, although the differences in them are minor in nature. The two most popularly known versions are called ‘Hafs’ and ‘Warsh’. They have minor differences with each other which varies from changes in words, harakas and numbering of ayahs, although no difference in the spirt of the message conveyed. ‘Hafs’ recitation is the most widely adopted recitation in the Muslim world with about 95% of Muslims adhering to it. The Warsh recitation is adopted by 3% of the Muslim world (mostly in North Africa) and then remaining 2% subscribing to lesser known recitations.

However only one reading/recitation of Al-Quran is the intended one by God which is persevered in the world for those who seek it. In order to know which one is it, we need guidance from Al-Quran. We know from Al-Quran, that Allah has placed His signs’ at Masid Ul Haram and ordered believers to align themselves towards of Masjid ul Haram (2:150). The place of ‘Ibrahim’ is fixed at Masjid ul Haram (22:26). The believers are ordered to take their ‘Mussala’ from the place of Ibrahim in Masjid Ul Haram (2:125). In this Mosque, the system of salat is preserved. In salat, the recitation from Al-Quran is made and then believers bow and prostate to what they have recited. Allah declared that His house is guidance for all words (3:96). So believers who seek guidance, if they are in doubt about which recitation is the true recitation of Al-Quran, they should seek the recitation which is preserved at Masjid ul Haram and recited in the system of salat established there. The reading of Al-Quran at Masjid ul Haram at the place of Ibrahim (a.s) is the preserved one for guidance of man kind, and is what is popularly known as the ‘Hafz’ version.

3:96 إِنَّ أَوَّلَ بَيْتٍ وُضِعَ لِلنَّاسِ لَلَّذِي بِبَكَّةَ مُبَارَكًا وَهُدًى لِّلْعَالَمِينَ

The first House appointed for mankind is that at Bakka( Makkah): Full of blessings and of guidance for all worlds.

6:91 وَمَا قَدَرُوا اللَّهَ حَقَّ قَدْرِهِ إِذْ قَالُوا مَا أَنزَلَ اللَّهُ عَلَىٰ بَشَرٍ مِّن شَيْءٍ ۗ قُلْ مَنْ أَنزَلَ الْكِتَابَ الَّذِي جَاءَ بِهِ مُوسَىٰ نُورًا وَهُدًى لِّلنَّاسِ ۖ تَجْعَلُونَهُ قَرَاطِيسَ تُبْدُونَهَا وَتُخْفُونَ كَثِيرًا ۖ وَعُلِّمْتُم مَّا لَمْ تَعْلَمُوا أَنتُمْ وَلَا آبَاؤُكُمْ ۖ قُلِ اللَّهُ ۖ ثُمَّ ذَرْهُمْ فِي خَوْضِهِمْ يَلْعَبُونَ

They did not value Allah as He should be valued, when they said, “Allah did not reveal from anything to a bashar/human.” Say, “Who then sent down the Book which Moosa brought, with light and guidance for the people?” You made it to pieces of paper, you show something while concealing a lot of it. You were taught what you never knew- you nor your fore-fathers. Say, “Allah (revealed it),” then leave them in their heedlessness, playing.

Allah did not reveal the Book in paper form. It is people who transferred ‘the Book’ on papers. There exists no master copy of Quran in printed form against which a new printed copy can be compared. However still the revelation is preserved for those seeking it. Az-Zikr/the remembrance of the message of Allah is preserved by collective remembrance of protectors/huffaz.

6:7 وَلَوْ نَزَّلْنَا عَلَيْكَ كِتَابًا فِي قِرْطَاسٍ فَلَمَسُوهُ بِأَيْدِيهِمْ لَقَالَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا إِنْ هَٰذَا إِلَّا سِحْرٌ مُّبِينٌ

Had we sent to you a book in papers, even so that they could touch it with their hands, the unbelievers would have been sure to say. “This is nothing but obvious magic!”

The responsibility of collection of Al-Quran and its recitations is on Allah.

75:17 إِنَّ عَلَيْنَا جَمْعَهُ وَقُرْآنَهُ

It is for Us (Allah) for its (Al-Quran’s) collection and recitation.


  1. The changes in different recitations in existence today, are not in accent only, they have difference in some words too. However, even with the difference in words, the spirit of the message conveyed is the same. For example in Hafs version, last word of ayat 2:85 is تَعْمَلُونَ meaning ‘you (people) do’. While in Warsh version this word is يَعْمَلُونَ meaning ‘they do’. Although both words are different, the spirit of the message does not change i.e Allah is aware of what people do. (details of the differences are available on internet (one such site is
  2. Easy to distinguish sign in recitation comes early in Al-Quran, i.e in ayat 4 of Sura Fatiha, where Hafs version is ‘مَالِكِ يَوْمِ الدِّينِ’ (Owner of the day of judgment) and Warsh version is مَلِكِ يَوْمِ الدِّينِ (King of the day of Judgement).
  3. Why early Islamic scholars allowed different readings of Al-Quran. The below article by Mr. Javed Ghamidi (translated by Dr. Shehzad Saleem) sheds some light: Copy of an excerpt from this article is given below:

“The answer to this question is that long before all these scholars, the earliest Muslim authorities had formed the opinion that though it is not essential for the common man to acquire knowledge through the akhbar-i ahad, it is essential for the scholars and the select to accept them and after being satisfied about their isnad, there is no difference in acquiring and adducing the knowledge gained through them and the knowledge that pervades among the common Muslims and which is being transferred from their generations to generations. Imam Shafi’i writes in his celebrated treatise Al-Risalah:

وعلم الخاصة سنة من خبر الخاصة يعرفها العلماء ولم يكلفها غيرهم وهي موجودة فيهم أو في بعضهم بصدق الخاص المخبر عن رَسُوْلَ اللّٰہِ بها وهذا اللازم لأهل العلم أن يصيروا إليه

And the knowledge of the select is the sunnah which is acquired through their reports, which the scholars know and which is not essential for the common man to know. This sunnah is present with all the scholars or with some of them from God’s Messenger (sws) through the information provided by a reliable informant and this is the knowledge which scholars must necessarily turn to.[2]

Thus after the demise of the Prophet (sws), when trustworthy narrators started to state, for example, that while a companion had read the word مَالِك (owner) as مَلِك (king) in verse 2 of Surah Fatihah, and يَكْذِبُوْن in its intensive form as يُكَذِّبُوْن in verse 10 of Surah Baqarah and يُوْصي in its passive form in verse 12 of Surah Nisa’, then this was accepted in scholarly circles in the same way that the reports of his other sayings and deeds were being accepted. The reason for this was evident: if they did not accept these reports regarding the Qur’an, they would also not have any basis to accept reports which depicted the Prophet’s deductions, verdicts, explanations and exemplary character except if they were deemed to be against a Qur’anic verse. The proliferation of variant readings took place because of this opinion of the tabi’un (followers of the companions).” 

The Ant and Prophet Suleiman (a.s)

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

Prophet Suleiman (a.s) was granted a kingdom, the likes of which had not been seen in the world before. His kingdom is characterized by peace, control, innovations and developments. Quran mentions that he was taught the logic of flyers (مَنطِقَ الطَّيْرِ/language of the birds or logic of flyers as used in air travel). This ayat lead some to assume that he would also know the language of animals. There is an event mentioned in Al-Quran about ‘ants’ in sura ‘Namal/Ant’. In this post we will review the implication of these ayahs.

In many languages, ‘ant’ is used in allegorical and idiomatic terms to describe an insignificant person vs a powerful person. In every society there exists quite a substantial population of people comprising the lower middle and lower classes which historically had little or no say in matters of the state. Their voice was seldom heard by the upper echelons and ruling class of the society. The general perception of the people in this class is that the ruling/elite class exploits and crushes them under their feet.

27:16-17 وَوَرِثَ سُلَيْمَانُ دَاوُودَ ۖ وَقَالَ يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ عُلِّمْنَا مَنطِقَ الطَّيْرِ وَأُوتِينَا مِن كُلِّ شَيْءٍ ۖ إِنَّ هَٰذَا لَهُوَ الْفَضْلُ الْمُبِينُ وَحُشِرَ لِسُلَيْمَانَ جُنُودُهُ مِنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنسِ وَالطَّيْرِ فَهُمْ يُوزَعُونَ

And Suleiman inherited from Dawood. He said. “O people! We have been taught the logic/language of flyers, and we have been given from all things (blessings). This is indeed a manifest grace. And presented to Suleiman were armies of Jinns and Ins/people and fliers, and they were all kept in order.

The kingdom and control of prophet Suleiman (a.s) was blessed and extended over Jinns (the developed nations), all other people and on the flyers (air force). Then they turned their attention towards the dwellings of the lower class of the society referred as the ‘valley of ants’.

27:18 حَتَّىٰ إِذَا أَتَوْا عَلَىٰ وَادِ النَّمْلِ قَالَتْ نَمْلَةٌ يَا أَيُّهَا النَّمْلُ ادْخُلُوا مَسَاكِنَكُمْ لَا يَحْطِمَنَّكُمْ سُلَيْمَانُ وَجُنُودُهُ وَهُمْ لَا يَشْعُرُونَ

Until, when they reached the valley of ants, one of the ants said. “O you ants, get into your habitations, lest Suleiman and his armies crush you without (even) knowing it.”

A representative of the lower class of the society referred as an ‘ant’, assumed that being insignificant people as they are, they may not have any value in the eyes of the ruler . They (their welfare, rights, freedom) may be crushed by the ruler as historically rulers used to be concerned more with their own plans for grandeur and didn’t care much for the lower classes. Therefore the ‘ant’ advised the fellow ants to get out of sight of the ruler so that he may not get ideas about them and they be persecuted.

27:19 فَتَبَسَّمَ ضَاحِكًا مِّن قَوْلِهَا وَقَالَ رَبِّ أَوْزِعْنِي أَنْ أَشْكُرَ نِعْمَتَكَ الَّتِي أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيَّ وَعَلَىٰ وَالِدَيَّ وَأَنْ أَعْمَلَ صَالِحًا تَرْضَاهُ وَأَدْخِلْنِي بِرَحْمَتِكَ فِي عِبَادِكَ الصَّالِحِينَ

So he smiled, amused at her speech; and he said. “O my Lord! Direct me that I should be grateful for Your favors, which You bestowed on me and on my parents, and that I may work righteousness that will please You, and admit me, by Your Grace, to the ranks of your righteous servants.”

Prophet Suleiman (a.s) thanked his Lord, for bestowing the blessings on him and to enable him to hear to the lower classes of the society to be able to do good for them as well. In his Government, there were means established to hear and get opinions from the lower classes of the masses.


  1. Animals use different methods of communication however their communication is not by language or ‘words’ as the ‘Nouns’ and words are taught to ‘Adam’ only, by God. Therefore in ayat 27:18, the utterance of ‘Sulieman’ by an actual ant is not possible, indicating that ‘ant’ in the ayat is a reference for some human.

2. A couple of questions may arise such as why in this narration Allah used the example of ants for people and if example of ants is appropriate to use for people. So we see the below ayahs:

17:89 وَلَقَدْ صَرَّفْنَا لِلنَّاسِ فِي هَٰذَا الْقُرْآنِ مِن كُلِّ مَثَلٍ فَأَبَىٰ أَكْثَرُ النَّاسِ إِلَّا كُفُورًا

And We have explained for people, in this Quran, every kind of example. yet the greater part of mankind reject them.

From above ayat 17:89 it becomes evident that it is not unusual for Allah to narrate events with the help of examples so that people can relate with them.

2:26 إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يَسْتَحْيِي أَن يَضْرِبَ مَثَلًا مَّا بَعُوضَةً فَمَا فَوْقَهَا ۚ فَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا فَيَعْلَمُونَ أَنَّهُ الْحَقُّ مِن رَّبِّهِمْ ۖ وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا فَيَقُولُونَ مَاذَا أَرَادَ اللَّهُ بِهَٰذَا مَثَلًا ۘ يُضِلُّ بِهِ كَثِيرًا وَيَهْدِي بِهِ كَثِيرًا ۚ وَمَا يُضِلُّ بِهِ إِلَّا الْفَاسِقِينَ

Allah does not shy away from citing the example of a mosquito, or anything above it. As for those who believe, they know that it is the truth from their Lord. As for the rejecters, they Say: ‘What does Allah intend with this example?’ He lets many stray by it, and He guides many, but He only lets stray the fasiqeen/evil-doers.

Ants are wonderful creatures. They built complex structures which can be compared to sky scrappers in an ant scaled city, size wise. The workers ants spend their whole lives doing real hard manual work. Citing of the examples of these wonderous creatures for the hard working low earning classes of humans is not an insult but rather a relatable example.

Other relevant previous posts to this topic are given below:

Belief in ‘Hereafter’/Akhirat /Accountability

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

A fundamental concept in Al-Quran is the emphasis on the belief in ‘akhirat’ i.e hereafter. This belief is fundamental in character building of the believers. A gold test to check whether we actually believe in this concept or not will be, in a situation in which we are absolutely certain that we will get away from doing a certain evil thing without any fear of repercussion whatsoever, however, we still refrain from doing that evil thing, with the certainty that we will definitely be held accountable for our deed in the hereafter. If we pass this test, then we do actually have belief in ‘akhirat’.

General observation is that many people when they know that they are not seen by anybody and don’t have fear of being caught, they go ahead in carrying out an evil act, even though they do lip service to their belief in ‘akhirat’.

A very useful tool for the believers in character building is to always be conscious of Allah as if a video of all their actions is being made all the time with the added dimension of what is in their hearts and this video record of their deeds will be on display on the day of hereafter and they will be held accountable for all their deeds. So, if you are able to refrain yourself from doing a bad thing primarily due to absolute belief of your accountability by Allah then you have true belief in ‘akhirat’.

2:62 إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَالَّذِينَ هَادُوا وَالنَّصَارَىٰ وَالصَّابِئِينَ مَنْ آمَنَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ وَعَمِلَ صَالِحًا فَلَهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ وَلَا خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلَا هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ

Verily, Those people who believe, and those who are Hood (Yahood), and the Nasara and the Sabians,- any who believe with Allah and the Last Day, and work righteousness, shall have their reward with their Lord; on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

For people belonging to different groups of characteristics, the fundamental requirement of them is to be conscious to the concept of accountability for all their actions they do in the world, and be conscious of an all powerful and cognizant God, who will make them accountable for their deeds.

A society with majority of people believing in accountability will definitely show signs of goodness, well being and people taking care of others. If a society shows signs of depravity, elevated crimes and degradation of humanity then definitely they don’t have belief in ‘akhirat’, no matter what religious label they put on themselves.

Signs associated with Mariam (as)

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

Mariam (a.s) the mother of prophet Essa (a.s) has a unique and elevated status in Quran as the only woman mentioned by name in Quran. No other woman is mentioned by personal name in Quran. Allah declares her to be the one chosen over all the women of the world. We will see what Quran says about Mariam (a.s) in this post:

3:35  إِذْ قَالَتِ امْرَأَتُ عِمْرَانَ رَبِّ إِنِّي نَذَرْتُ لَكَ مَا فِي بَطْنِي مُحَرَّرًا فَتَقَبَّلْ مِنِّي ۖ إِنَّكَ أَنتَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ

When woman of  Imran said. “My Lord! verily I dedicate to You, freeing, what is in my belly. Thus accept from me, verily You hear and know all things.”

Mariam (a.s) belonged to a very pious family. Her father’s name was Imran. 

3:36 فَلَمَّا وَضَعَتْهَا قَالَتْ رَبِّ إِنِّي وَضَعْتُهَا أُنثَىٰ وَاللَّهُ أَعْلَمُ بِمَا وَضَعَتْ وَلَيْسَ الذَّكَرُ كَالْأُنثَىٰ ۖ وَإِنِّي سَمَّيْتُهَا مَرْيَمَ وَإِنِّي أُعِيذُهَا بِكَ وَذُرِّيَّتَهَا مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ الرَّجِيمِ

So when she gave birth to her, she said: “My Lord, I gave birth to a female and Allah knows better with what she gave birth to. “And the male is not like the female and I named her Mariam, and I seek protection from you for her and her descendants, from the Satan the cursed/expelled.

Prophet Zakariaya (a.s) was her guardian. She grew up in purity and blessings endowed from Allah.

3:37 فَتَقَبَّلَهَا رَبُّهَا بِقَبُولٍ حَسَنٍ وَأَنبَتَهَا نَبَاتًا حَسَنًا وَكَفَّلَهَا زَكَرِيَّا ۖ كُلَّمَا دَخَلَ عَلَيْهَا زَكَرِيَّا الْمِحْرَابَ وَجَدَ عِندَهَا رِزْقًا ۖ قَالَ يَا مَرْيَمُ أَنَّىٰ لَكِ هَٰذَا ۖ قَالَتْ هُوَ مِنْ عِندِ اللَّهِ ۖ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَرْزُقُ مَن يَشَاءُ بِغَيْرِ حِسَابٍ

Thus graciously did her Lord accept her. He made her grow in purity and beautiful way. To the care of Zakariya, was she assigned. Every time that Zakarya entered her chamber, he found her supplied with sustenance (food). He asked. “O Mariam! from where this comes to you?” She said. ” this is from Allah, for Allah provides sustenance to whom He pleases without measure.”

Mariam (a.s) is the chosen women by Allah over all the women in all the worlds. 

3:42 وَإِذْ قَالَتِ الْمَلَائِكَةُ يَا مَرْيَمُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ اصْطَفَاكِ وَطَهَّرَكِ وَاصْطَفَاكِ عَلَىٰ نِسَاءِ الْعَالَمِينَ

And when the angels said, “O’ Mariam, surely Allah has chosen you and purified you and He has chosen you above the women of all the worlds.”

The below ayat states the legitimacy of women doing congregational prayers.

3:43  يَا مَرْيَمُ اقْنُتِي لِرَبِّكِ وَاسْجُدِي وَارْكَعِي مَعَ الرَّاكِعِينَ

“O Mariam! Be obedient to your Lord devoutly, prostrate yourself, and bow down (in prayer) with those who bow down.”

She was given the glad tidings of a Word and a Sign from the Lord, the prophet Essa (a.s).

3:45  إِذْ قَالَتِ الْمَلَائِكَةُ يَا مَرْيَمُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُبَشِّرُكِ بِكَلِمَةٍ مِّنْهُ اسْمُهُ الْمَسِيحُ عِيسَى ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ وَجِيهًا فِي الدُّنْيَا وَالْآخِرَةِ وَمِنَ الْمُقَرَّبِينَ

When the angels said ‘O Mariam!Allah gives you the good news of a Word from Him, named the Maseeh, Essa, the son of Mariam, honorable/conspicuous in this world and in the hereafter and he shall be of close associates (of Allah)

3:47  قَالَتْ رَبِّ أَنَّىٰ يَكُونُ لِي وَلَدٌ وَلَمْ يَمْسَسْنِي بَشَرٌ ۖ قَالَ كَذَٰلِكِ اللَّهُ يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ ۚ إِذَا قَضَىٰ أَمْرًا فَإِنَّمَا يَقُولُ لَهُ كُن فَيَكُونُ

She said, ‘My Lord, how can there be a son for me, when no human touched me? He (Allah) said, ‘This is how Allah creates what He wills, when He has decreed an order, He says it to , ‘be’ and it is!

The birth of prophet Essa (a.s) is a miraculous birth, intended as a sign for the mankind.

19:21 قَالَ كَذَٰلِكِ قَالَ رَبُّكِ هُوَ عَلَيَّ هَيِّنٌ ۖ وَلِنَجْعَلَهُ آيَةً لِّلنَّاسِ وَرَحْمَةً مِّنَّا ۚ وَكَانَ أَمْرًا مَّقْضِيًّا

He said. “So (it will be)’. Your Lord said, ‘that is easy for Me, and to appoint him as a sign for mankind and a mercy from Us. It is a matter decreed.’

Allah said ‘Kada’lik’, which means ‘like this’ or ‘in this manner’, in response to Mariam (a.s) stating that ‘no man touched her’. Which means, she was going to have a son, without any man touching her. Prophet Essa (a.s) is also called the spirit of Allah, is a sign of the Lord born of a virgin birth. 

21:91  وَالَّتِي أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهَا مِن رُّوحِنَا وَجَعَلْنَاهَا وَابْنَهَا آيَةً لِّلْعَالَمِينَ

And her who guarded her private parts. We breathed into her of Our spirit, and We made her and her son a sign for all the worlds.

There are two main cultures in the wold known as ‘Eastern’ and ‘Western’ culture. In terms of feminism, Western culture is more liberal and open, while the Eastern culture is more demure and virtues conservative values. Mariam (a.s) segregated herself from her society adopting eastern values and she made a barrier from the societal influences on her. 

19:16-17  وَاذْكُرْ فِي الْكِتَابِ مَرْيَمَ إِذِ انتَبَذَتْ مِنْ أَهْلِهَا مَكَانًا شَرْقِيًّا  فَاتَّخَذَتْ مِن دُونِهِمْ حِجَابًا فَأَرْسَلْنَا إِلَيْهَا رُوحَنَا فَتَمَثَّلَ لَهَا بَشَرًا سَوِيًّا

Remember in the book, Mariam, when she withdrew from her people to an eastern place. Then she took a hijab/veil apart from them, then We sent to her Our Rooh/Spirit. So he was an even example of a human for her.

After she segregated herself from the societal influences and teachings, Allah sent His Spirit i.e the essence/understanding of His Words. The Spirit and essence of the Words of Allah do not come with the worldly teachings, in fact the prevalent teachings only cause distortion in the understanding of Allah’s Book with their association of anecdotes and historical background to Allah’s Book. The spirit of Allah came to her through a bashar/human.

19:20 قَالَتْ إِنِّي أَعُوذُ بِالرَّحْمَٰنِ مِنكَ إِن كُنتَ تَقِيًّا

She said. “I seek refuge from you to (Allah) Most Gracious, if you fear Allah.”

The above is the normal reaction by a person on first encounter with the spirit of Allah. The understanding and spirit of the Words of Allah is so much apart from previous beliefs and societal teachings that it is hard to believe on them and people ask Allah’s refuge. 

19:19-21 قَالَ إِنَّمَا أَنَا رَسُولُ رَبِّكِ لِأَهَبَ لَكِ غُلَامًا زَكِيًّا  قَالَتْ أَنَّىٰ يَكُونُ لِي غُلَامٌ وَلَمْ يَمْسَسْنِي بَشَرٌ وَلَمْ أَكُ بَغِيًّا  قَالَ كَذَٰلِكِ قَالَ رَبُّكِ هُوَ عَلَيَّ هَيِّنٌ ۖ وَلِنَجْعَلَهُ آيَةً لِّلنَّاسِ وَرَحْمَةً مِّنَّا ۚ وَكَانَ أَمْرًا مَّقْضِيًّا

He said. “Without doubt, I am a messenger from your Lord, (to announce) to you a holy son. She said. “How shall I have a son, while no man has touched me, and I am not unchaste?” He said. “So (it will be)’. Your Lord said, ‘that is easy for Me, and to appoint him as a sign for mankind and a mercy from Us. It is a matter decreed.’

The virgin birth of prophet Essa (a.s) was explained to her as prophet Essa (a.s) is decreed to be a sign for mankind. 

19:22-23 فَحَمَلَتْهُ فَانتَبَذَتْ بِهِ مَكَانًا قَصِيًّا  فَأَجَاءَهَا الْمَخَاضُ إِلَىٰ جِذْعِ النَّخْلَةِ قَالَتْ يَا لَيْتَنِي مِتُّ قَبْلَ هَٰذَا وَكُنتُ نَسْيًا مَّنسِيًّا

So she conceived him, and she retired with him to a remote place. And the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm-tree. She cried (in her anguish). “Ah! would that I had died before this! would that I had been a thing forgotten and out of sight!”

Mariam (a.s) went to a remote place from her home for the childbirth. The place she went is characterized by  date palm trees so should be a desert/semi desert type of place. 

19:24-25  فَنَادَاهَا مِن تَحْتِهَا أَلَّا تَحْزَنِي قَدْ جَعَلَ رَبُّكِ تَحْتَكِ سَرِيًّا  وَهُزِّي إِلَيْكِ بِجِذْعِ النَّخْلَةِ تُسَاقِطْ عَلَيْكِ رُطَبًا جَنِيًّا

Thus it was cried to her from beneath the (palm-tree). “Grieve not! for your Lord has provided a rivulet beneath you; “And shake towards yourself the trunk of the palm-tree. It will let fresh ripe dates fall upon you.”

Allah a created a miraculous spring under her feet in that desert/semi desert land. She was able to eat ripe dates in that land. 

23:50  وَجَعَلْنَا ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ وَأُمَّهُ آيَةً وَآوَيْنَاهُمَا إِلَىٰ رَبْوَةٍ ذَاتِ قَرَارٍ وَمَعِينٍ

And We made the son of Mary and his mother, a Sign. We gave them shelter on raised ground of tranquility and springs.

The raised place and miraculous underground spring of water in desert land of dates are associated with Mariam (a.s) and prophet Essa (a.s) in Quran as per above ayahs. However in history books they are associated with a story of prophet Ibraheem (a.s) leaving his wife and son in the desert. 

19:26  فَكُلِي وَاشْرَبِي وَقَرِّي عَيْنًا ۖ فَإِمَّا تَرَيِنَّ مِنَ الْبَشَرِ أَحَدًا فَقُولِي إِنِّي نَذَرْتُ لِلرَّحْمَٰنِ صَوْمًا فَلَنْ أُكَلِّمَ الْيَوْمَ إِنسِيًّا

So eat and drink and cool (your) eye. And if you see any person, say, ‘I have vowed a fast to (Allah) Most Gracious, and this day I will not enter into talk with any human.

When the spirit of Allah first comes to a person a new journey of understanding starts which is sometimes 180 degrees apart from the previous beliefs of the person. There could be lot of unanswered questions and confusions at that time. At that time, a saum/roza of speaking is desirable, that one should not communicate the understanding of the signs of Allah in public until the right time i.e when sufficient understanding and strength of belief is achieved.  

19:27-28 فَأَتَتْ بِهِ قَوْمَهَا تَحْمِلُهُ ۖ قَالُوا يَا مَرْيَمُ لَقَدْ جِئْتِ شَيْئًا فَرِيًّا  يَا أُخْتَ هَارُونَ مَا كَانَ أَبُوكِ امْرَأَ سَوْءٍ وَمَا كَانَتْ أُمُّكِ بَغِيًّا

Then she came with him (Essa) carrying him to her people, they said O’Maryam, without doubt you have come with a fabricated thing. O’sister of Haroon, your father was not a wicked man and nor your mother a wrongdoer/rebellious.

Her people blamed her for bringing a fabrication to them, while they acknowledged the piety and goodness of her family. When she was accused of making fabrication, instead of responding herself, she referred them to the messenger of her times.

Another thing to note is the relationship of Mariam (a.s) with Haroon (a.s) as brother and sister. While history books keep them about six hundered years apart in time line, Quran informs they were in about the same era. 

Outside of biblical scripture and related books derived from these scriptures, there is next to nothing in evidence in the historical record for Moses’s existence. There is no exact time line which confirms in which era prophet Moosa (a.s) lived – with scholarly conjectures spanning more than half a millennium. The only book which gives chronological data is bible. The chronological history that is in most people minds comes from Bible. Quran does not give a chronological timeline however informs the relationship of Mariam (a.s) and prophet Haroon (a.s) emphasizing that general understanding of history mainly coming from Bible is flawed. 

19:29-30  فَأَشَارَتْ إِلَيْهِ ۖ قَالُوا كَيْفَ نُكَلِّمُ مَن كَانَ فِي الْمَهْدِ صَبِيًّا  قَالَ إِنِّي عَبْدُ اللَّهِ آتَانِيَ الْكِتَابَ وَجَعَلَنِي نَبِيًّا

Thus she pointed towards him (baby Essa). They said. “How can we talk to one who is a child in the cradle?” (Essa) said, ‘I am indeed a servant of Allah: He has given me Al-kitab (the book) and made me a prophet’

Prophet Essa (a.s) was a sign of Allah to mankind. He declared his prophet-hood from childhood and told them that he has been given Al-Kitab by Allah, so they better not call her mother a fabricator. Prophet Essa (a.s) is also a prophet by birth (please see earlier post about Nabi Ummi-

66:12 وَمَرْيَمَ ابْنَتَ عِمْرَانَ الَّتِي أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهِ مِن رُّوحِنَا وَصَدَّقَتْ بِكَلِمَاتِ رَبِّهَا وَكُتُبِهِ وَكَانَتْ مِنَ الْقَانِتِينَ

And Mariam the daughter of Imran, who guarded her private parts; and We breathed in it (private part) from Our spirit; and she testified to the truth of the words of her Lord and of His books, and she was of the devout/obedient ones.

Mariam (a.s) testified with the Words of the Lord and His Books. She was devout and she protected her private parts. Prophet Essa’s birth was a  miraculous birth, who was born of a single parent i.e his mother only. 

Later people continued to doubt in prophet Essa’s miraculous birth from a single parent. Any suggestion of birth of prophet Essa (a.s) by coupling, is termed as a grave insinuation (bohtan-e-Azeem) on Mariam. it is not taken lightly by Allah and he warns against such dis-beliefs in very stern language in the book. 

4:156  وَبِكُفْرِهِمْ وَقَوْلِهِمْ عَلَىٰ مَرْيَمَ بُهْتَانًا عَظِيمًا

And with their Kufr/rejection: and what they uttered against Mariam/Mary a grave false charge.

19:88-92 وَقَالُوا اتَّخَذَ الرَّحْمَٰنُ وَلَدًا  لَّقَدْ جِئْتُمْ شَيْئًا إِدًّا  تَكَادُ السَّمَاوَاتُ يَتَفَطَّرْنَ مِنْهُ وَتَنشَقُّ الْأَرْضُ وَتَخِرُّ الْجِبَالُ هَدًّا  أَن دَعَوْا لِلرَّحْمَٰنِ وَلَدًا  وَمَا يَنبَغِي لِلرَّحْمَٰنِ أَن يَتَّخِذَ وَلَدًا

They said, Most Gracious has taken a son! Indeed you have put forth a thing most monstrous! The skies would burst and the earth be split asunder, and the mountains are torn to pieces. As they called a son for the Most Gracious. For it is not for the most Gracious that He should take a son.