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Friday, 14 December 2018

SURAT AL-TAWBA (Repentance)/ BARA’AT (Immunity) 9 – MEDINIAN – AYATS 129 (Except Ayats 128-129 Meccan) SECTION THREE – AYATS FROM 25-31

Assuredly God did help you and gave you victory in many battle-fields, and on the day of Hunain; Behold! You rejoiced at your  great numbers which  elated you, but it availed you naught, and the land –vast as it is- did constrained and straitened for you, and you turned back in retreat. (25) 

لَقَدْ نَصَرَكُمُ اللَّهُ فِي مَوَاطِنَ كَثِيرَةٍ وَيَوْمَ حُنَيْنٍ إِذْ أَعْجَبَتْكُمْ كَثْرَتُكُمْ فَلَمْ تُغْنِ عَنْكُمْ شَيْئًا وَضَاقَتْ عَلَيْكُمُ الْأَرْضُ بِمَا رَحُبَتْ ثُمَّ وَلَّيْتُمْ مُدْبِرِينَ (25)

Then God did send down/pour His calmness/ Immanence of God on the Apostle [PPBUH], and on the Believers, and sent down forces (angels) which you saw not, and He punished the Unbelievers. Thus does He recompense those who are without Faith. (26) 

ثُمَّ أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ سَكِينَتَهُ عَلَى رَسُولِهِ وَعَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَأَنْزَلَ جُنُودًا لَمْ تَرَوْهَا وَعَذَّبَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا وَذَلِكَ جَزَاءُ الْكَافِرِينَ (26)

Then again God will accept the repentance and –after this- He will turn (in mercy) to whom He will: for God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. (27)

ثُمَّ يَتُوبُ اللَّهُ مِنْ بَعْدِ ذَلِكَ عَلَى مَنْ يَشَاءُ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ (27)

O’ you who believe! Verily, the Polytheistic Pagans are impure/defiled*; so let them not –after this year of theirs-approach the Sacred Mosque. And if you fear poverty, soon God will enrich you –if He Wills- out of His bounty. Surely, God is All-Knowing, All-Wise. (28)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا إِنَّمَا الْمُشْرِكُونَ نَجَسٌ فَلَا يَقْرَبُوا الْمَسْجِدَ الْحَرَامَ بَعْدَ عَامِهِمْ هَذَا وَإِنْ خِفْتُمْ عَيْلَةً فَسَوْفَ يُغْنِيكُمُ اللَّهُ مِنْ فَضْلِهِ إِنْ شَاءَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ حَكِيمٌ (28)

Fight against those who do not believe in God, nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which has been forbidden by God and His Apostle [PPBUH], nor acknowledge the Religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya/tax/tribute (head tax on free non-Muslims under Muslim rule), with willing submission and feel themselves subdued. (29)

قَاتِلُوا الَّذِينَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَلَا بِالْيَوْمِ الْآَخِرِ وَلَا يُحَرِّمُونَ مَا حَرَّمَ اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ وَلَا يَدِينُونَ دِينَ الْحَقِّ مِنَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ حَتَّى يُعْطُوا الْجِزْيَةَ عَنْ يَدٍ وَهُمْ صَاغِرُونَ (29)

And the Jews said/call ‘Uzair (Ezra) is the son of God’, and the Christians say/call Christ/the Messiah is the son of God. That is their saying with their mouths: (in this) they but imitate and resembling the saying of the Unbelievers aforetime used to say. God’s curse be on them, how they are deluded away from the Truth! (30)

وَقَالَتِ الْيَهُودُ عُزَيْرٌ ابْنُ اللَّهِ وَقَالَتِ النَّصَارَى الْمَسِيحُ ابْنُ اللَّهِ ذَلِكَ قَوْلُهُمْ بِأَفْوَاهِهِمْ يُضَاهِئُونَ قَوْلَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ

قَبْلُ قَاتَلَهُمُ اللَّهُ أَنَّى يُؤْفَكُونَ (30)

They take (the Jews and Christians) take their priests and their anchorites (rabbis and monks) to be their lords in derogation of God, and (they take as their Lord) Christ/Messiah –the son of Mary- yet they were commanded (in Torah and Gospel) to worship none but One God; there is no God but He, Praise and glory to Him (far above is He) from having the partners they associate (with Him). (31)

اتَّخَذُوا أَحْبَارَهُمْ وَرُهْبَانَهُمْ أَرْبَابًا مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ وَالْمَسِيحَ ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ وَمَا أُمِرُوا إِلَّا لِيَعْبُدُوا إِلَهًا وَاحِدًا لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا هُوَ سُبْحَانَهُ عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ (31)

(Verses 30-42)= The enemies of Faith would fain and eager to put out God’s Light, but God’s light will shine more glorious than ever. Wealth is for use and on trust for mankind; hoard not, nor misuse it. Fight a straight fight in the Cause of Right, go forth bravely to strive and struggle, and prove yourselves worthy of God.
(Verse 25)-A/ Hunain is on the road to Al-Taif from Mecca, and about fourteen miles to the east of Mecca. It is a valley in the mountainous country between Mecca and Al-Taif. Immediately after the conquest of Mecca (A.H.8), the Polytheistic Pagan idolaters -and were surprised and chagrined at the wonderful reception which Islam was receiving- organized a great gathering near Al-Taif to concert plans for attacking the Apostle [PPBUH]. The Hawazin and the Thaqif tribes took the lead and prepared a great expedition for Mecca, boasting of their strength and military skills. There was on other hand a wave of confident enthusiasm among the Muslims at Mecca, in which the new Muslims joined. The enemy forces numbered about 4,000, but the Muslim force reached a total of ten or twelve thousand, as every- one wished to join. The battle was joined at Hunain, as described in the next note. B/For the first time the Muslims had at Hunain tremendous odds in their favor. But this itself constituted a danger. Many in their ranks had more enthusiasm than wisdom, more a spirit of elation than of faith and confidence in the righteousness of their cause. The enemy had the advantage of knowing the ground thoroughly. They laid an ambush in which the advance guard of the Muslim forces was caught. The country is hilly, in which the enemy concealed himself. As soon as the Muslims vanguard entered the Hunain valley, the enemy fell upon them with fury and caused havoc with their arrows from their places of concealment. In such ground the numbers of the Muslims were themselves a disadvantage. Many were slain, and many turned back in confusion and retreat. But the Apostle [PPBUH] –as ever- was calm in his wisdom and faith. He rallied his forces and inflicted the most crushing defeat on the enemy.
(Verse 26)- Sakin: calm, peace, security, tranquility (see Surat Al-Bagara 2 verse 248). The Apostle [PPBUH] never approved of over-weening confidence, or reliance merely upon human strength, or human resources or numbers. In the hour of danger and seeming disaster, he was perfectly calm, and with cool courage relied upon the help of God, Whose standard he carried. His calmness inspired all around him, and stopped the rout of those who had turned their backs. It was with God’s help that they won, and their victory was complete. They followed it up with an energetic pursuit of the enemies, capturing their camps, their flocks and herds, and their families, whom they had boastfully brought with them in expectation of an easy victory.
(Verse 27)- Example of God’s mercy and grace in difficult circumstances in one case illustrate His grace and mercy at all times to those who have faith.
(Verse 28)- A/Unclean: both literally and metaphorically; because Muslims are enjoined to be strict in ablutions and physical cleanliness, as well as in purity of mind and heart, so that their word can be relied upon. B/ This year of theirs: there is a two-fold meaning: (1) now that you have complete control of Mecca, and are charged with the purity of worship there, shut out all impurity from this year; (2) you have seen how the Polytheistic Pagans have behaved this year; their year of power and misuse of that power may be called their year; it is over, and now you Muslims are responsible. C/The concourse in Mecca added to the profits of trade and commerce. “But fear not”, we are told: “the Polytheistic Pagans are waning power, bound to disappear, and you should strengthen your own community, that they may more than counter-balance the apparent loss of custom; and God has other means of improving your economic position”. This actually happened. The Polytheistic Pagans were extinguished from Arabia, and the concourse of Pilgrims from all parts of the world increased the numbers more than a hundred-fold. Here is commonsense, wisdom, and statesmanship, even if we look at it from a purely human point of view.
(Verse 29)- A/Jiziya: the root meaning is compensation. The deriving meaning –which became the technical meaning- was a poll-tax levied from those who did not accept Islam, but were willing to live under the protection of Islam, and were thus tacitly willing to submit to its ideals being enforced in the Muslim State, saving only their personal liberty of conscience as regarded themselves. There was no amount fixed for it, and in any case it was merely symbolical,_ an acknowledgment that those whose religion was tolerated would in their turn not interfere with the preaching and progress of Islam. Imam Al-Shafi’I suggests one dinar per year, which would be the Arabian gold dinar of the Muslim State, equivalent in value to about half a sovereign, or about 5 to 6-7 rupees , see Surat  Al-Imran 3 verse 75.
((Verse 75) Hoard of Gold= Qintar: a talent of 1,200 ounces of gold. Silver coin=Dinar, in the later Roman Empire, the denarius was small silver coin, about the size of four-Anna piece. It must have been current in Syria and the markets of Arabia in the time of our Apostle. It was the coin whose name is translated in the English Bible by the word Penny [Matt. xxii 19] hence the abbreviation of penny is d=denarius. The later Arabian coin Dinar coined by the Umaiyads, was a gold coin after the pattern of the Byzantine (Roman) denarius aurous weighted about 66.349 grains troy, just a little more than half-sovereign.                                    Every race imbued with race arrogance resorts to this kind of moral or religious subterfuge. Even if its members are usually honest or just among themselves, they are contemptuous of those outside their circle, and cheat and deceive them without any qualms of conscience. This is “a lie against God”.)
 The tax varied in amount, and there were exemptions for the poor, for females and children (according to Imam Abu-Hanifa), for slaves, and for monks and hermits. Being a tax on able-bodied males of military age, it was in a sense a commutation for military service; and C/ ‘Ann yadin=?? ??: (literally: from the hand) it has been variously interpreted. The hand being the symbol of power and authority, I accept the interpretation “in token of willing submission”. The Jiziya was thus partly a symbolic and partly a commutation for military  service, but the amount was insignificant and the exemptions numerous, it’s symbolic character predominated.        
 (Verse 30)- A/In Surat Al-Maida 5 verse 18 we have quoted passages from Old Testament, showing how freely the expression: “sons of God” was used by the Jews. A sect of them called ‘Uzair a son of God’. In a separate study shows that the constitution of Judaism dates from ‘Uzair (Ezra). The Christians still call Christ/the Messiah the Son of God. B/Taking men for gods or sons of God was not a new thing. All ancient mythologies have fables of that kind. There was less excuse for such blasphemies after the apostles of God had clearly explained our true relation to God than in the times of primitive ignorance and superstitions. C/see Surat Al-Maida 5 (Verses 75-76)- (a) She never claimed that she was a mother of God, or that her son was God. She was a pious virtuous woman. (b) Note how logically the argument has led up from Jewish back-sliding and want of faith, to blasphemes associated with the names of Jesus and Mary, and in the following verses to the worship of senseless stocks and stones. God is One; His Message is one; yet how people’s perversity transforms truth into falsehood, religion into superstition.
(Verse 31)- A/Priest worship, and the worship of saints and ascetics is a form of superstition to which men have been prone in all ages. The growth of Jewish superstition is shown in the Talmud, and the Christian superstition in doctrine of papal infallibility and the worship of saints. The mere idea of a separate order of priesthood to stand between God and man and be the exclusive repository of God’s secrets is derogatory to the goodness and all-pervading grace of God. The worship of “lords many and gods many” was not confined only to the Polytheistic Pagans. The deification of the son of Mary is put here in a special clause by itself, as it held (and still holds) in its thrall a large portion of civilized humanity. B/see Surat Al-An’am 6 verse 100- Jinns: who are they? In Surat Al-Bagara 2 verse 34:
- And behold/remember when We said to the angels [prostrate your selves before Adam] and they all prostrated except (Iblis) “the Satan/Lucifer” who refused and was haughty, and he was of those who reject faith/disbelievers. (34)
And in Al-Kahf 18 verse 50 we are told that Iblis (Satan-Devil-Lucifer) was one of the Jinns, and it is suggested that that was why he disobeyed the Command of God. But in that passage and other similar passages, we are told that God commanded the angels to bow down to Adam, and they obeyed except Iblis. That implies that Iblis had been of the company of angels. In many passages Jinns and men are spoken of together. In Surat Al-Nisa’ 4 verses 14-15, man is stated to have been created from clay, while Jinns from a flame of fire. The root meaning of Janna, Yajinnu, is:”to be covered or hidden”, and Janna Yajinnu, in the active voice: “to cover or hide” as in verse 76. Some people say that Jinn therefore mean the hidden qualities or capacities in man; others say that it means wild or jungle folk hidden in the hills or forests, other generally spoken means (lost his mind- became lunatic-Crazy).