Pray As You Have Seen Me Pray: Tafsir al-Qurtubi

In part of his discussion of surah Hud, Imam al-Qurtubi included the following discussion:

ذكر الله سبحانه في كتابه الصلاة بركوعها وسجودها وقيامها وقراءتها وأسمائها فقال : أقم الصلاة الآية . وقال : أقم الصلاة لدلوك الشمس الآية . وقال : فسبحان الله حين تمسون وحين تصبحون وله الحمد في السماوات والأرض وعشيا وحين تظهرون . وقال : وسبح بحمد ربك قبل طلوع الشمس وقبل غروبها . وقال : اركعوا واسجدوا . وقال : وقوموا لله قانتين . وقال : وإذا قرئ القرآن فاستمعوا له وأنصتوا على ما تقدم . وقال : ولا تجهر بصلاتك ولا تخافت بها أي بقراءتك ; ـ

Throughout His Book, Allah mentions the prayer by referring to its bowing, prostrating, standing, recitation and by their names.

He says:

وَأَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ طَرَفَيِ النَّهَارِ وَزُلَفًا مِّنَ اللَّيْلِ

And establish prayer at the two ends of the day and at the approach of the night … [11:114]

أَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ لِدُلُوكِ الشَّمْسِ إِلَىٰ غَسَقِ اللَّيْلِ وَقُرْآنَ الْفَجْرِ ۖ إِنَّ قُرْآنَ الْفَجْرِ كَانَ مَشْهُودًا

Establish prayer at the decline of the sun until the darkness of the night and the recitation of dawn. Indeed, the recitation of dawn is ever witnessed. [17:78]

فَسُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ حِينَ تُمْسُونَ وَحِينَ تُصْبِحُونَ * وَلَهُ الْحَمْدُ فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَعَشِيًّا وَحِينَ تُظْهِرُونَ

So exalted is Allah when you reach the evening and when you reach the morning. * And to Him belongs praise throughout the heavens and the earth. And exalted is He at night and when you are at noon. [30:17-18] Continue reading

Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 234-242: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the twenty-fifth installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 234-242. This section continues discussing legal rulings surrounding marriage and divorce. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرًا ۖ فَإِذَا بَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَلَا جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِيمَا فَعَلْنَ فِي أَنفُسِهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ۗ وَاللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ

And those of you who are taken in death and leave wives behind, they shall wait four months and ten days. When they have completed their term, then there is no blame on you for what they do with themselves in an acceptable way. And Allah is All-Aware of what you do. [2:234]

والذين يموتون منكم، ويتركون زوجات بعدهم، يجب عليهن الانتظار بأنفسهن مدة أربعة أشهر وعشرة أيام، لا يخرجن من منزل الزوجية، ولا يتزيَّنَّ، ولا يتزوجن، فإذا انتهت المدة المذكورة فلا إثم عليكم يا أولياء النساء فيما يفعلن في أنفسهن من الخروج، والتزين، والزواج على الوجه المقرر شرعًا. والله سبحانه وتعالى خبير بأعمالكم ظاهرها وباطنها، وسيجازيكم عليها. ـ

234. And those of you who die and leave wives behind after them, then it is required for the wives to wait for four months and ten days without leaving the house of their husband, beautifying themselves, or marrying. Then when that period has ended, there is no sin on you – O family of these women – for what they do with themselves in terms of going out, beautifying themselves, or marrying in a way that the shari’ah approves. And Allah is All-Aware of your actions, both outward and inward, and He will repay you for them. Continue reading

Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 228-233: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the twenty-fourth installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 228-233. This section continues to discuss legal rulings related to marriage, divorce and parenting. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

وَالْمُطَلَّقَاتُ يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ ثَلَاثَةَ قُرُوءٍ ۚ وَلَا يَحِلُّ لَهُنَّ أَن يَكْتُمْنَ مَا خَلَقَ اللَّهُ فِي أَرْحَامِهِنَّ إِن كُنَّ يُؤْمِنَّ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ ۚ وَبُعُولَتُهُنَّ أَحَقُّ بِرَدِّهِنَّ فِي ذَٰلِكَ إِنْ أَرَادُوا إِصْلَاحًا ۚ وَلَهُنَّ مِثْلُ الَّذِي عَلَيْهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ۚ وَلِلرِّجَالِ عَلَيْهِنَّ دَرَجَةٌ ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

Divorced women remain in waiting for three periods, and it is not permissible for them to conceal what Allah has created in their wombs if they believe in Allah and the Last Day. And their husbands have more right to take them back during this if they want reconciliation. And the women have rights similar to those over them according to what is reasonable, but men have a degree over them. And Allah is Almighty, All-Wise. [2:228]

والمطلقات ذوات الحيض، يجب أن ينتظرن دون نكاح بعد الطلاق مدة ثلاثة أطهار أو ثلاث حيضات على سبيل العدة؛ ليتأكدن من فراغ الرحم من الحمل. ولا يجوز لهن تزوج رجل آخر في أثناء هذه العدة حتى تنتهي. ولا يحل لهن أن يخفين ما خلق الله في أرحامهن من الحمل أو الحيض، إن كانت المطلقات مؤمنات حقًا بالله واليوم الآخر. وأزواج المطلقات أحق بمراجعتهن في العدة. وينبغي أن يكون ذلك بقصد الإصلاح والخير، وليس بقصد الإضرار تعذيبًا لهن بتطويل العدة. وللنساء حقوق على الأزواج، مثل التي عليهن، على الوجه المعروف، وللرجال على النساء منزلة زائدة من حسن الصحبة والعشرة بالمعروف والقِوامة على البيت وملك الطلاق. والله عزيز له العزة القاهرة، حكيم يضع كل شيء في موضعه المناسب.ـ

228. Divorced women who still menstruate must wait for three periods of cleanliness or three menstrual cycles after divorce before a new marriage. This is her waiting period, so that she can be sure that her womb is not pregnant. It is not permissible for her to marry another man during this waiting period; only after the waiting period ends. Nor is it permissible for her to conceal what Allah has created in her womb – whether that be a pregnancy of menstruation – if the divorced women really believe in Allah and the Last Day. And the husbands of the divorced women have the right to take them back during the waiting period, but that must be done with the intention of reconciliation and goodness, not for the purpose of harming or punishing her by prolonging the waiting period. And women have rights over their husbands, just as the husbands have rights over them, according to what is reasonable. But men have a higher position over women due to their role in treating them well, providing for them reasonably, managing the house and being able to initiate divorce. And Allah is Almighty, having overwhelming power, and All-Wise, placing every thing in their proper places. Continue reading

Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 221-227: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the twenty-third installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 221-227. This section continues with a series of legal rulings, specifically concerning marriage and oaths. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

وَلَا تَنكِحُوا الْمُشْرِكَاتِ حَتَّىٰ يُؤْمِنَّ ۚ وَلَأَمَةٌ مُّؤْمِنَةٌ خَيْرٌ مِّن مُّشْرِكَةٍ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَتْكُمْ ۗ وَلَا تُنكِحُوا الْمُشْرِكِينَ حَتَّىٰ يُؤْمِنُوا ۚ وَلَعَبْدٌ مُّؤْمِنٌ خَيْرٌ مِّن مُّشْرِكٍ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَكُمْ ۗ أُولَٰئِكَ يَدْعُونَ إِلَى النَّارِ ۖ وَاللَّهُ يَدْعُو إِلَى الْجَنَّةِ وَالْمَغْفِرَةِ بِإِذْنِهِ ۖ وَيُبَيِّنُ آيَاتِهِ لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَذَكَّرُونَ

And do not marry the polytheist women until they believe. A believing slave woman is better than a polytheist woman, even though she might amaze you. And do not wed to the polytheist men until they believe. A believing slave is better than a polytheist, even those he might amaze you. Those ones invite to the fire, while Allah invites to Paradise and forgiveness, by His permission. And He clarifies His verses to the people so that they might remember. [2:221]

ولا تتزوجوا- أيها المسلمون- المشركات عابدات الأوثان، حتى يدخلن في الإسلام. واعلموا أن امرأة مملوكة لا مال لها ولا حسب، مؤمنةً بالله، خير من امرأة مشركة، وإن أعجبتكم المشركة الحرة. ولا تُزَوِّجوا نساءكم المؤمنات- إماء أو حرائر- للمشركين حتى يؤمنوا بالله ورسوله. واعلموا أن عبدًا مؤمنًا مع فقره، خير من مشرك، وإن أعجبكم المشرك. أولئك المتصفون بالشرك رجالا ونساءً يدعون كل مَن يعاشرهم إلى ما يؤدي به إلى النار، والله سبحانه يدعو عباده إلى دينه الحق المؤدي بهم إلى الجنة ومغفرة ذنوبهم بإذنه، ويبين آياته وأحكامه للناس؛ لكي يتذكروا، فيعتبروا. ـ

221. O Muslims, do not marry the polytheist women who worship idols until they enter Islam. Be aware that a slave women without any wealth or status who believes in Allah is better than a polytheist woman, even if the free polytheist woman might amaze you. And do not marry your believing women – neither slave women or free women – to a polytheist man until he believes in Allah and His Messenger. Be aware that, despite his poverty, a believing slave is better than a polytheist, even if the polytheist man might amaze you. Those men and women who are characterized with polytheism call anyone that they keep company with to things which would lead to the Hellfire. But Allah calls His servants to His true religion which will lead them to Paradise and forgiveness of their sins, by His permission. And He makes His verses and rulings clear to the people so that they would remember and take a lesson.

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Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 215-220: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the twenty-second installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 215-220. After the previous section encouraging the believers to submit to Allah completely, this passage presents guidance on a number of legal questions. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

يَسْأَلُونَكَ مَاذَا يُنفِقُونَ ۖ قُلْ مَا أَنفَقْتُم مِّنْ خَيْرٍ فَلِلْوَالِدَيْنِ وَالْأَقْرَبِينَ وَالْيَتَامَىٰ وَالْمَسَاكِينِ وَابْنِ السَّبِيلِ ۗ وَمَا تَفْعَلُوا مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ بِهِ عَلِيمٌ

They ask you what they should spend. Say: Whatever you spend of good is for parents, relatives, orphans, the poor, and the traveler. And whatever good you do, Allah is certainly Knowing of it. [2:215]

يسلك أصحابك- أيها النبي- أي شيء ينفقون من أصناف أموالهم تقربًا إلى الله تعالى، وعلى مَن ينفقون؟ قل لهم: أنفقوا أيَّ خير يتيسر لكم من أصناف المال الحلال الطيب، واجعلوا نفقتكم للوالدين، والأقربين من أهلكم وذوي أرحامكم، واليتامى، والفقراء، والمسافر المحتاج الذي بَعُدَ عن أهله وماله. وما تفعلوا من خير فإن الله تعالى به عليم.ـ

215. They ask you – O Prophet – what type of their wealth should they spend when seeking closeness to Allah, and who should they spend on. Tell them: spend whatever goodness is easy for you from the various types of permissible, wholesome wealth, and spend on parents, close relatives such as your immediate family and close relations, orphans, the poor, and needy travelers who are far-removed from their family and wealth. And whatever good you do, Allah is certainly knowledgeable of it.

كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْقِتَالُ وَهُوَ كُرْهٌ لَّكُمْ ۖ وَعَسَىٰ أَن تَكْرَهُوا شَيْئًا وَهُوَ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ ۖ وَعَسَىٰ أَن تُحِبُّوا شَيْئًا وَهُوَ شَرٌّ لَّكُمْ ۗ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ وَأَنتُمْ لَا تَعْلَمُونَ

Fighting has been prescribed for you even though it is disliked by you. Perhaps you would dislike something while it is good for you. And perhaps you would love something while it is bad for you. And Allah knows while you do not know. [2:216] Continue reading

Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 196-203: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the twentieth installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 196-203. This passage focuses on Hajj and sincerity in worship. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

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

Complete the Hajj and ‘Umrah for Allah. But if you are prevented, then offer what sacrificial animals can be easily attained. And do not shave your heads until the sacrificial animal has reached its place. Then whoever of you is sick or has an injury on his head, then his ransom is fasting or charity or sacrifice. Then when you are safe, whoever performs ‘Umrah followed by Hajj, then he should offer what sacrificial animal can be easily attained. But whoever cannot find one, then he should fast three days during the Hajj and seven once he goes back. That is a full ten days. That is for anyone whose family does not live around al-Masjid al-Haram. And have taqwa of Allah, and know that Allah is severe in punishment. [2:196]

وأدُّوا الحج والعمرة تامَّيْنِ، خالصين لوجه الله تعالى. فإن منعكم عن الذهاب لإتمامهما بعد الإحرام بهما مانع كالعدو والمرض، فالواجب عليكم ذَبْحُ ما تيسر لكم من الإبل أو البقر أو الغنم تقربًا إلى الله تعالى؛ لكي تَخْرُجوا من إحرامكم بحلق شعر الرأس أو تقصيره، ولا تحلقوا رؤوسكم إذا كنتم محصرين حتى ينحر المحصر هديه في الموضع الذي حُصر فيه ثم يحل من إحرامه، كما نحر النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم في الحديبية ثم حلق رأسه، وغير المحصر لا ينحر الهدي إلا في الحرم، الذي هو محله في يوم العيد، اليوم العاشر وما بعده من أيام التشريق. فمن كان منكم مريضًا، أو به أذى من رأسه يحتاج معه إلى الحلق- وهو مُحْرِم- حَلَق، وعليه فدية: بأن يصوم ثلاثة أيام، أو يتصدق على ستة مساكين لكل مسكين نصف صاع من طعام، أو يذبح شاة لفقراء الحرم. فإذا كنتم في أمن وصحَّة: فمن استمتع بالعمرة إلى الحج وذلك باستباحة ما حُرِّم عليه بسبب الإحرام بعد انتهاء عمرته، فعليه ذبح ما تيسر من الهدي، فمن لم يجد هَدْيًا يذبحه فعليه صيام ثلاثة أيام في أشهر الحج، وسبعة إذا فرغتم من أعمال الحج ورجعتم إلى أهليكم، تلك عشرة كاملة لا بد من صيامها. ذلك الهَدْيُ وما ترتب عليه من الصيام لمن لم يكن أهله من ساكني أرض الحرم، وخافوا الله تعالى وحافظوا على امتثال أوامره واجتناب نواهيه، واعلموا أن الله شديد العقاب لمن خالف أمره، وارتكب ما عنه زجر. ـ

196. Perform Hajj and ‘Umrah in times of safety sincerely for the sake of Allah. If you are prevented from completing either of these rituals by some factor such as an enemy or illness after entering the state of ihram for them, then you must sacrifice whatever animal such as a camel, cow, or sheep is easy for you to attain as an act of drawing close to Allah. This is so that you may exit from your state of ihram by shaving or cutting the hair on your head. But do not shave your heads when you have been detained until the detained person has sacrificed his sacrificial animal in the place where he has been detained; then he can exit his state of ihram. This is just as the Prophet made his sacrifice at al-Hudaybiyyah and then shaved his head. But those who are not prevented from completing the Hajj or ‘Umrah can only sacrifice their sacrificial animal in the Haram, which is the place for sacrifice on the day of ‘Eid, the tenth day, and the following days of Tashreeq. Then if any of you are sick or has an injury on his head which would require him to shave his head while in a state of ihram, then he should shave it and he will have to pay a ransom: fasting for three days, or giving charity to six poor people with each of them receiving half a sa’a of food, or sacrificing a sheep to give to the poor people of the Haram. But if you are in a state of security and health, then whoever would like to perform a tamatta’u ‘Umrah leading up to Hajj, and that involves being able to partake of the things that had been forbidden because of his state of ihram after completing his ‘Umrah, then he must sacrifice whatever kind of sacrificial animal is easy for him. But whoever cannot find a sacrificial animal to sacrifice, then he must fast three days during the months of Hajj and seven more days after completing the Hajj rituals and returning to his people. That is a full ten days that he must fast. That sacrificial animal and the fasting related to it are for those whose families are not residents of the Haram area. And fear Allah and be consistent in fulfilling His commands and avoiding His prohibitions, and know that Allah is severe in punishing those who go against His command and commit acts which they have been forbidden from doing.

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What Should I Do When I Finish a Complete Reading of the Qur’an?: Sheikh ‘Abd al-Qadir al-Junayd

Sheikh ‘Abd al-Qadir al-Junayd, one of the contemporary salafi scholars in Saudi Arabia, wrote the following during Ramadan 1442 AH.

ماذا أفعل عندما أختم تلاوة القرآن كاملًا. ـ
What Should I Do When I Finish a Complete Reading of the Qur’an?

ـ▪️أولًا – إذا ختم العبد قراءة القرآن كاملًا في شهر رمضان أو غيره مِن الشهور: فإنه يُستحَب له أنْ يَجمع ولده – ذكورًا وإناثًا – وأهل بيته، ومَن شاء، ومَن أحب، ثم يدعو الله بما تيسِّر، ويُؤمنون على دعائه. لِما صحَّ عن أنس – رضي الله عنه -: (( أنه كان إذا ختم القرآن جمَع ولده وأهل بيته فدعا لهم )). أخرجه: سعيد بن منصور، والدارمي، وابن أبي شيبة، وأبو عُبيد، وغيرهم. وصححه: النووي، وابن حجر العسقلاني، والألباني. وصحَّ نحوه أيضًا عن: جمْعٍ مِن التابعين تلامذة أصحاب النبي ﷺ. ونصَّ على الاستحباب أيضًا: أعداد مِن فقهاء الحنفية، والمالكية، والشافعية، والحنابلة، وغيرهم. ومَن لم يتيسر له جمْع ولده وأهل بيته عند الدعاء بعد ختم القرآن: فإنَّه يدعو لوحده بما أحب مِن دعاء لنفسه، وأهله، ومَن شاء. ـ

First: When a person finishes a complete reading of the Qur’an either during the month of Ramadan or in any other month, then it is encouraged for him to gather his children – both male and female – and the members of his household and whoever he wishes or loves and then to supplicate to Allah with whatever is easy for him to do while they say “ameen” to his supplications.

This is based on the following authentic reports regarding Anas, that

When he used to complete the Qur’an, he would gather his children and the members of his household and supplicate for them.

Continue reading

Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 183-188: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the eighteenth installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 183-188. In this passage, Allah provides the rulings and guidance surrounding the fast of Ramadan. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ

O you who believe, fasting has been prescribed for you just as it was prescribed for those before you so that you might gain taqwa. [2:183]

يا أيها الذين صدَّقوا الله ورسوله وعملوا بشرعه، فرض الله عليكم الصيام كما فرضه على الأمم قبلكم؛ لعلكم تتقون ربكم، فتجعلون بينكم وبين المعاصي وقاية بطاعته وعبادته وحده.ـ

183. O you who have believed in Allah and His messenger and act according to His legislation, Allah has mandated fasting for you just as He mandated it for the nations before you. This is in order that you might fear your Lord and thus place a barrier of obedience and worshiping Allah alone between yourselves and sins.

أَيَّامًا مَّعْدُودَاتٍ ۚ فَمَن كَانَ مِنكُم مَّرِيضًا أَوْ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍ فَعِدَّةٌ مِّنْ أَيَّامٍ أُخَرَ ۚ وَعَلَى الَّذِينَ يُطِيقُونَهُ فِدْيَةٌ طَعَامُ مِسْكِينٍ ۖ فَمَن تَطَوَّعَ خَيْرًا فَهُوَ خَيْرٌ لَّهُ ۚ وَأَن تَصُومُوا خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ ۖ إِن كُنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ

A limited number of days. Then whoever of you is sick or traveling, then the same number of other days. And for those who are able to fast, a ransom of feeding a poor person. And whoever voluntarily does good, that is good for him. And fasting is better for you, if only you knew. [2:184] Continue reading

Surahs that the Prophet Used To Recite Together: al-Nawawi

Imam Muslim included the following narration in his Saheeh in the midst of a number of hadith narrations related to the prayers:

جَاءَ رَجُلٌ يُقَالُ لَهُ نَهِيكُ بْنُ سِنَانٍ إِلَى عَبْدِ اللَّهِ فَقَالَ يَا أَبَا عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ كَيْفَ تَقْرَأُ هَذَا الْحَرْفَ أَلِفًا تَجِدُهُ أَمْ يَاءً مِنْ مَاءٍ غَيْرِ آسِنٍ أَوْ مِنْ مَاءٍ غَيْرِ يَاسِنٍ قَالَ فَقَالَ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ وَكُلَّ الْقُرْآنِ قَدْ أَحْصَيْتَ غَيْرَ هَذَا قَالَ إِنِّي لأَقْرَأُ الْمُفَصَّلَ فِي رَكْعَةٍ ‏.‏ فَقَالَ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ هَذًّا كَهَذِّ الشِّعْرِ إِنَّ أَقْوَامًا يَقْرَءُونَ الْقُرْآنَ لاَ يُجَاوِزُ تَرَاقِيَهُمْ وَلَكِنْ إِذَا وَقَعَ فِي الْقَلْبِ فَرَسَخَ فِيهِ نَفَعَ إِنَّ أَفْضَلَ الصَّلاَةِ الرُّكُوعُ وَالسُّجُودُ إِنِّي لأَعْلَمُ النَّظَائِرَ الَّتِي كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقْرُنُ بَيْنَهُنَّ سُورَتَيْنِ فِي كُلِّ رَكْعَةٍ ‏.‏ ثُمَّ قَامَ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ فَدَخَلَ عَلْقَمَةُ فِي إِثْرِهِ ثُمَّ خَرَجَ

A man named Nuhayk ibn Sinan came to ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ood and said, “Abu ‘Abd al-Rahman, how do you recite this letter – as an alif of a yaa’? Is it

مِّن مَّاءٍ غَيْرِ آسِنٍ

… of unstagnant water … [47:15]

or is it

مِنْ مَاءٍ غَيْرِ يَاسِنٍ

… of un-stagnating water … [compare to 47:15]”

Ibn Mas’ood replied, “And you have memorized the entire Qur’an except for this?” He replied, “I recite all of the Mufassal surahs in a single raka’ah.” Ibn Mas’ood said, “Rushing through it like poets rush. There are some people who recite the Qur’an but it does not pass beyond their throats. But if it were to reach the heart and take hold within it, then it would have an effect. The best parts of the prayer are the rukoo’ and the sujood. I am well-acquainted with the pairs of similar surahs that Allah’s Messenger used to recite together in a single raka’ah.” Then ibn Mas’ood stood up to leave and ‘Alqamah followed behind him.

[Saheeh Muslim #822]

In his famous explanation of Saheeh Muslim, Imam al-Nawawi wrote the following commentary on this hadith:

قوله للذي سأل ابن مسعود عن آسن : ( كل القرآن قد أحصيت غير هذا الحرف ) هذا محمول على أنه فهم منه أنه غير مسترشد في سؤاله ، إذ لو كان مسترشدا لوجب جوابه وهذا ليس بجواب . ـ

Ibn Mas’ood response of “And you have memorized the entire Qur’an except for this?” to the man who asked about the wording of the ayah could be interpreted as ibn Mas’ood sensing that this person wasn’t asking in good faith. For if the person had legitimately wanted an answer to that question, he would have pressed for an answer rather than the non-answer that he received. Continue reading

Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 177-182: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the seventeenth installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 177-182. In this passage, Allah defines what piety is and then follows that up with a series of commands for the pious ones to follow. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

لَّيْسَ الْبِرَّ أَن تُوَلُّوا وُجُوهَكُمْ قِبَلَ الْمَشْرِقِ وَالْمَغْرِبِ وَلَـٰكِنَّ الْبِرَّ مَنْ آمَنَ بِاللَّـهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ وَالْمَلَائِكَةِ وَالْكِتَابِ وَالنَّبِيِّينَ وَآتَى الْمَالَ عَلَىٰ حُبِّهِ ذَوِي الْقُرْبَىٰ وَالْيَتَامَىٰ وَالْمَسَاكِينَ وَابْنَ السَّبِيلِ وَالسَّائِلِينَ وَفِي الرِّقَابِ وَأَقَامَ الصَّلَاةَ وَآتَى الزَّكَاةَ وَالْمُوفُونَ بِعَهْدِهِمْ إِذَا عَاهَدُوا ۖ وَالصَّابِرِينَ فِي الْبَأْسَاءِ وَالضَّرَّاءِ وَحِينَ الْبَأْسِ ۗ أُولَـٰئِكَ الَّذِينَ صَدَقُوا ۖ وَأُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُتَّقُونَ

Piety is not that you turn your faces towards the east or the west. Rather, piety is the one who believe in Allah and the Last Day and the angels and the Book and the prophets, and gives wealth despite his love for it to relatives, orphans, the poor, wayfarers, those who ask, and in freeing slaves, and who establish the prayer and give the zakah and fulfill their promises when they make an agreement, and who are patient during poverty and hardship and in battle. Those are the ones who are truthful. And those and the pious ones. [2:177]

ليس الخير عند الله- تعالى- في التوجه في الصلاة إلى جهة المشرق والمغرب إن لم يكن عن أمر الله وشرعه، وإنما الخير كل الخير هو إيمان من آمن بالله وصدَّق به معبودًا وحدَه لا شريك له، وآمن بيوم البعث والجزاء، وبالملائكة جميعًا، وبالكتب المنزلة كافة، وبجميع النبيين من غير تفريق، وأعطى المال تطوُّعًا- مع شدة حبه- ذوي القربى، واليتامى المحتاجين الذين مات آباؤهم وهم دون سن البلوغ، والمساكين الذين أرهقهم الفقر، والمسافرين المحتاجين الذين بَعُدوا عن أهلهم ومالهم، والسائلين الذين اضطروا إلى السؤال لشدة حاجتهم، وأنفق في تحرير الرقيق والأسرى، وأقام الصلاة، وأدى الزكاة المفروضة، والذين يوفون بالعهود، ومن صبر في حال فقره ومرضه، وفي شدة القتال. أولئك المتصفون بهذه الصفات هم الذين صدقوا في إيمانهم، وأولئك هم الذين اتقَوا عقاب الله فتجنبوا معاصيه.ـ

177. Goodness according to Allah does not lie in turning one’s face in prayer towards the direction of the east or the west unless that is done according to Allah’s command and legislation. True goodness is only the faith of one who believes in Allah and affirms Him as the only One deserving of worship without any partners; and believes in the Day of resurrection and recompense; and in all the angels; and all of the revealed scriptures; and in all of the prophets without making any distinctions between them; and who voluntarily gives wealth despite his love for it to relatives, the needy orphans whose parents have died before they reached maturity, the needy who are overcome with poverty, the needy travelers who have been separated from their families and wealth, those beggars who are driven to ask by severe need; and who spend to free slaves and prisoners of war; and who establish the prayer and pay the obligatory zakah; and who fulfill their promises; and who are patient in the face of poverty, sickness, and in the midst of battle. Those who are characterized by these qualities are the ones who are truthful in their faith, and those are the ones who fear Allah’s punishment and therefore avoid disobeying Him. Continue reading