THE HOLY QUR'AAN

SURAH 53
An-Najm  (The Star)

INTRODUCTION:

This Surah consists of 62 verses, 360 sentences, 1,405 letters and 3 Ruku's.

Name

It derives its name from the very first word wan Najm. This title also does not relate to the subject matter, but is a name given to the Surah as a symbol.

Period of Revelation

According to a Tradition related by Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Da'ud and Nasai, on the authority of Hadrat Abdullah bin Mas'ud, the first Surah in which a verse requiring the performance of a sajdah (prostration) was sent down, is Surah An-Najm. The parts of this Hadith which have been reported by Aswad bin Yazid, Abu Ishaq and Zubair bin Mu'awiyah from Hadrat Ibn Mas'ud, indicate that this is the first Surah of the Quran, which the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had publicly recited before an assembly of the Quraish (and according to Ibn Marduyah, in the Ka'bah) in which both the believers and the disbelievers were present. At the end, when he recited the verse requiring the performance of a sajdah and fell down in prostration, the whole assembly also fall down in prostration with him, and even those chiefs of the polytheists who were in the forefront of the opposition to the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) could not resist falling down in prostration. Ibn Mas'ud (may Allah be pleased with him) says that he saw only one man, Umayyah bin Khalaf, from among the disbelievers, who did not fall down in prostration but took a little dust and rubbing it on his forehead said that that was enough for him. Later, as Ibn Mas'ud relates, he saw this man being killed in the state of disbelief.

 

Another eye witness of this incident is Hadrat Muttalib bin Abi Wada'ah, who had not yet become a Muslim. Nasai and Musnad Ahmad contain his own words to the effect: "When the Holy Prophet recited the Surah An-Najm and performed the sajdah and the whole assembly fell down in prostration along with him, I did not perform the sajdah. Now to compensate for the same whenever I recite this Surah I make sure never to abandon its performance."

 

Ibn Sad says that before this, in the Rajab of the 5th year of Prophethood, a small group of the Companions had emigrated to Abyssinia. Then, when in the Ramadan of the same year this incident took place the news spread that the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had recited Surah An-Najm publicly in the assembly of the Quraish and the whole assembly, including the believers as well as the disbelievers, had fallen down in prostration with him. When the emigrtrants to Abyssinia heard this news they formed the impression that the disbelievers of Makkah had become Muslims. Thereupon, some of them returned to Makkah in the Shawwal of the 5th year of Prophethood, only to learn that the news was wrong and the conflict between Islam and disbelief was raging as furiously as before. Concequently, the second emigration to Abyssinia took place, in which many more people left Makkah. Thus, it becomes almost certain that this Surah was revealed in the Ramadan of 5th year of Prophethood.

Historical Background

The details of the period of revelation as given above point to the conditions in which this Surah was revealed. During the first five years of his appointment as a Prophet, the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had been extending invitation to Allah's Religion by presenting the Divine Revelations before the people only in private and restricted meetings and assemblies. During this whole period he could never have a chance to recite the Quran before a common gathering openly, mainly because of the strong opposition and resistance from the disbelievers. They were well aware of how magnetic and captivating was the Holy Prophet's personality and his way of preaching and how impressive were the Revelations of the Quran. Therefore, they tried their best to avoid hearing it themselves and to stop others also from hearing it and to suppress his invitation by false propaganda by spreading every kind of suspicion against him. For this object, on the one hand, they were telling the people that Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had gone astray and was now bent upon misleading others as well; on the other hand, they would raise an uproar whenever he tried to present the Quran before the people so that no one could know what it was for which he was being branded as a misled and misguided person.

 

Such were the conditions when the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) suddenly stood up one day to make a speech in the sacred precincts of the Ka'bah, where a large number of the Quraish had gathered together. Allah at that time made him deliver this discourse, which we have now in the form of the Surah An-Najm with us. Such was the intensity of the impression that when the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) started reciting it the opponents were so completely overwhelmed that they could not think of raising any disorder, and when at the conclusion he fell down in prostration, they too fell down in prostration along with him. Later they felt great remorse at the weakness they had involuntarily shown. The people also started taunting them to the effect that whereas they had been forbidding others to listen to the Quran, that day not only had they themselves listened to it, with complete absorption but had even fallen down in prostration along with Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). At last, they had to invent a story in order to get rid of the people's taunt and ridicule. They said, "After he had recited afara'ait-ul Lata wal Uzza wa Manat ath-thalitha-al ukhra, we heard from Muhammad the words: tilk al-gharaniqa- tal-'ula, wa anna shafa'at-u-hunna latarja: 'They are exalted goddesses: indeed, their intercession may be expected.' From this we understood that Muhammad had returned to our faith." As a matter of fact, only a mad person could think that in the context of this Surah the sentences they claimed to have heard could have any place and relevance.(For details, please see E. N.'s 96 to 301 of Surah Al Hajj).

Subject Matter and Topics

The theme of the discourse is to warn the disbelievers of Makkah about the error of the attitude that they had adopted towards the Quran and the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).

 

The discourse starts in a way as if to say: "Muhammad is neither deluded nor gone astray, as you are telling others in your propaganda against him, nor has he fabricated this teaching of Islam and its message, as you seem to think he has. In fact, whatever he is presenting is nothing but Revelation which is sent down to him. The verities that he presents before you, are not the product of his own surmise and speculation but realities of which he himself is an eye witness. He has himself seen the Angel through whom this knowledge is conveyed to him. He has been directly made to observe the great Signs of his Lord: whatever he says is not what he has himself thought out but what he has seen with his own eyes. Therefore, your disputing and wrangling with him is just like the disputing and wrangling of a blind man with a man of sight over a thing which the blind man cannot see but he can see."

 

After this, three things have been presented in their successive order: First, the listeners have been made to understand that: "The religion that you are following is based on mere conjecture and invented ideas. You have set up a few goddesses like Lat and Manat and Uzza as your deities, whereas they have no share whatever in divinity. You regard the angels as the daughters of Allah, whereas you regard a daughter as disgraceful for your own selves. You think that these deities of yours can influence Allah in your favour, whereas the fact is that all the angels together, who are stationed closest to Allah, cannot influence Him even in their own favour. None of such beliefs that you have adopted, is based on knowledge and reason, but are wishes and desires for the sake of which you have taken some whims as realities. This is a grave error. The right and true religion is that which is in conformity to the reality, and the reality is never subject to the people's wishes and desires so that whatever they may regard as a reality and truth should become the reality and truth. Speculation and conjecture cannot help to determine as to what is according to the truth and what is not; it is knowledge. When that knowledge is presented before you, you turn away from it, and brand the one who tells you the truth as misguided. The actual cause of your being involved in this error is that you are heedless of the Hereafter. Only this world is your goal. Therefore, you have neither any desire for the knowledge of reality, nor do you bother to see whether the beliefs you hold are according to the truth or not.

 

Secondly, the people have been told that: Allah is the Master and Sovereign of the entire Universe. The righteous is he who follows His way, and the misguided he who has turned away from His way. The error of the misguided and the righteousness of the righteous are not hidden from Him. He knows whatever everyone is doing: He will requite the evil with evil and the good with good. The final judgement will not depend on what you consider yourself to be, and on tall claims you make of your purity and chastity but on whether you are pious or impious, righteous or unrighteous, in the sight of God. If you refrain from major sins, He in His mercy will overlook your minor errors.''

 

Thirdly, a few basic principles of the true Religion which had been presented hundreds of years before the revelation of the Quran in the Books of the Prophets Abraham and Moses have been reiterated so that the people did not remain involved in the misunderstanding that the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had brought some new and novel religion, but they should know that these are the fundamental truths which the former Prophets of Allah have always been presenting in their respective ages. Besides, the same Books have been quoted to confirm the historical facts that the destruction of the 'Ad and the Thamud and of the people of the Prophets Noah and Lot was not the result of accidental calamities, but Allah has destroyed them in consequence of the same wickedness and rebellion from which the disbelievers of Makkah were not inclined to refrain and desist in any case.

 

After presenting these themes and discourses the Surah has been concluded, thus: "The Hour of Judgement has approached near at hand, which no one can avert. Before the occurrence of that Hour you are being warned through Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and the Quran in the like manner as the former people had been warned before. Now, is it this warning that you find novel and strange? Which you mock and ridicule? Which you turn away from and cause disorder so that no one else also is able to hear what it is? Don't you feel like weeping at your folly and ignorance? Abandon this attitude and behaviour, bow down to Allah and serve Him alone!"

 

This was that impressive conclusion hearing which even the most hardened deniers of the Truth were completely overwhelmed, and when after reciting these verses of Divine Word the Holy Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) fell down in prostration, they too could not help falling down in prostration along with him.

Maududi

 

IMPORTANT: Please note that the Digest is based upon these outstanding translations and they have been reproduced here for the benefit of serious readers of the Quraan; the copyrights of these works are held by their respective authors/publishers from whom they can be purchased by anyone interested in acquiring them and we ardently hope that no offence will be taken by their inclusion.

 

 

THE HOLY QUR'AAN


SURAH 53
AN-NAJM (THE STAR)

  

Bismi Allahi alrrahmani alrraheemi

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.


Section 1.  

53 : 1

1. Waalnnajmi itha hawa

By the star when it sets!

53 : 2

2. Ma dalla sahibukum wama ghawa

Your mentor is neither mistaken nor misguided!

53 : 3

3. Wama yantiqu AAani alhawa

Nor does he speak anything of his own accord.

53 : 4

4. In huwa illa wahyun yooha

He speaks nothing except that which is inspired in him;

53 : 5

5. AAallamahu shadeedu alquwa

Which, He who is of the utmost Might has taught him!

53 : 6

6. Thoo mirratin faistawa

He Who is the Ubiquitous! And His manifestation became clearly visible -

53 : 7

7. Wahuwa bial-ofuqi al-aAAla

When he reached the apex of the uppermost heaven;

53 : 8

8. Thumma dana fatadalla

Then he drew nearer and came down -

53 : 9

9. Fakana qaba qawsayni aw adna

Until there was a distance of only two arms length between them, - even closer.

53 : 10

10. Faawha ila AAabdihi ma awha

Then He revealed to His bondsman that which He revealed!

53 : 11

11. Ma kathaba alfu-adu ma raa

The heart lied not about seeing that which it saw!

53 : 12

12. Afatumaroonahu AAala ma yara

Will you then dispute with him concerning that which he saw?

53 : 13

13. Walaqad raahu nazlatan okhra

And verily he saw Him yet again:

53 : 14

14. AAinda sidrati almuntaha

 

By the lote tree on the outer perimeters -

53 : 15

15. AAindaha jannatu alma/wa

Near which lies the Garden of Abode (for the celestial)!

53 : 16

16. Ith yaghsha alssidrata ma yaghsha

Behold! The lote tree was shrouded in an (inexplicable mystery) -

53 : 17

17. Ma zagha albasaru wama tagha

The eye dared not turn aside nor venture beyond!

53 : 18

18. Laqad raa min ayati rabbihi alkubra

Verily he saw one of the momentous portents of his Lord.

53 : 19

19. Afaraaytumu allata waalAAuzza

Have you then ever seen the portents of Al-Lat and Al-Uzza? -

53 : 20

20. Wamanata alththalithata al-okhra

And of that third one Manat and of the others?

53 : 21

21. Alakumu alththakaru walahu al-ontha

What! Are yours the sons and His the daughters?

53 : 22

22. Tilka ithan qismatun deeza

That then is a most one-sided apportionment!

53 : 23

23. In hiya illa asmaon sammaytumooha antum waabaokum ma anzala Allahu biha min sultanin in yattabiAAoona illa alththanna wama tahwa al-anfusu walaqad jaahum min rabbihimu alhuda

They are nothing but a few names which you and your forefathers have chosen for them for which Allah has revealed no warrant. They follow merely a guess, and that which their hearts desire, though guidance has come to them from their Lord!

53 : 24

24. Am lil-insani ma tamanna

 Does man expect to grab everything which he desires?

53 : 25

25. Falillahi al-akhiratu waal-oola

But to Allah belongs life here as well as life in the Hereafter! (R)


OTHER TRANSLATIONS BY MUHSIN, YUSUFALI, PICKTHAL AND SHAKIR:

MUHSIN:

1. By the star when it goes down, (or vanishes).

2. Your companion (Muhammad SAW) has neither gone astray nor has erred.

3. Nor does he speak of (his own) desire.

4. It is only an Inspiration that is inspired.

5. He has been taught (this Qur'n) by one mighty in power [Jibrael (Gabriel)].

6. Dhu Mirrah (free from any defect in body and mind), Fastawa [then he (Jibrael Gabriel) rose and became stable]. [Tafsir At-Tabar].

7. While he [Jibrael (Gabriel)] was in the highest part of the horizon,

8. Then he [Jibrael (Gabriel)] approached and came closer,

9. And was at a distance of two bows' length or (even) nearer,

10. So did (Allh) convey the Inspiration to His slave [Muhammad SAW through Jibrael (Gabriel) <><>].

11. The (Prophet's) heart lied not (in seeing) what he (Muhammad SAW) saw.

12. Will you then dispute with him (Muhammad SAW) about what he saw [during the Mi'rj: (Ascent of the Prophet SAW over the seven heavens)][] .

13. And indeed he (Muhammad SAW) saw him [Jibrael (Gabriel)] at a second descent (i.e. another time).

14. Near Sidrat-ul-Muntaha [lote-tree of the utmost boundary (beyond which none can pass)],

15. Near it is the Paradise of Abode.

16. When that covered the lote-tree which did cover it!

17. The sight (of Prophet Muhammad SAW) turned not aside (right or left), nor it transgressed beyond (the) limit (ordained for it).

18. Indeed he (Muhammad SAW) did see, of the Greatest Signs, of his Lord (Allh).

19. Have you then considered Al-Lt, and Al-'Uzza (two idols of the pagan Arabs) []

20. And Mant (another idol of the pagan Arabs), the other third?

21. Is it for you the males and for Him the females?

22. That indeed is a division most unfair!

23. They are but names which you have named, you and your fathers, for which Allh has sent down no authority. They follow but a guess and that which they themselves desire, whereas there has surely come to them the Guidance from their Lord!

24. Or shall man have what he wishes?

25. But to Allh belongs the last (Hereafter) and the first (the world).


053.001
YUSUFALI: By the Star when it goes down,-
PICKTHAL: By the Star when it setteth,
SHAKIR: I swear by the star when it goes down.

053.002
YUSUFALI: Your Companion is neither astray nor being misled.
PICKTHAL: Your comrade erreth not, nor is deceived;
SHAKIR: Your companion does not err, nor does he go astray;

053.003
YUSUFALI: Nor does he say (aught) of (his own) Desire.
PICKTHAL: Nor doth he speak of (his own) desire.
SHAKIR: Nor does he speak out of desire.

053.004
YUSUFALI: It is no less than inspiration sent down to him:
PICKTHAL: It is naught save an inspiration that is inspired,
SHAKIR: It is naught but revelation that is revealed,

053.005
YUSUFALI: He was taught by one Mighty in Power,
PICKTHAL: Which one of mighty powers hath taught him,
SHAKIR: The Lord of Mighty Power has taught him,

053.006
YUSUFALI: Endued with Wisdom: for he appeared (in stately form);
PICKTHAL: One vigorous; and he grew clear to view
SHAKIR: The Lord of Strength; so he attained completion,

053.007
YUSUFALI: While he was in the highest part of the horizon:
PICKTHAL: When he was on the uppermost horizon.
SHAKIR: And he is in the highest part of the horizon.

053.008
YUSUFALI: Then he approached and came closer,
PICKTHAL: Then he drew nigh and came down
SHAKIR: Then he drew near, then he bowed

053.009
YUSUFALI: And was at a distance of but two bow-lengths or (even) nearer;
PICKTHAL: Till he was (distant) two bows' length or even nearer,
SHAKIR: So he was the measure of two bows or closer still.

053.010
YUSUFALI: So did (Allah) convey the inspiration to His Servant- (conveyed) what He (meant) to convey.
PICKTHAL: And He revealed unto His slave that which He revealed.
SHAKIR: And He revealed to His servant what He revealed.

053.011
YUSUFALI: The (Prophet's) (mind and) heart in no way falsified that which he saw.
PICKTHAL: The heart lied not (in seeing) what it saw.
SHAKIR: The heart was not untrue in (making him see) what he saw.

053.012
YUSUFALI: Will ye then dispute with him concerning what he saw?
PICKTHAL: Will ye then dispute with him concerning what he seeth?
SHAKIR: What! do you then dispute with him as to what he saw?

053.013
YUSUFALI: For indeed he saw him at a second descent,
PICKTHAL: And verily he saw him yet another time
SHAKIR: And certainly he saw him in another descent,

053.014
YUSUFALI: Near the Lote-tree beyond which none may pass:
PICKTHAL: By the lote-tree of the utmost boundary,
SHAKIR: At the farthest lote-tree;

053.015
YUSUFALI: Near it is the Garden of Abode.
PICKTHAL: Nigh unto which is the Garden of Abode.
SHAKIR: Near which is the garden, the place to be resorted to.

053.016
YUSUFALI: Behold, the Lote-tree was shrouded (in mystery unspeakable!)
PICKTHAL: When that which shroudeth did enshroud the lote-tree,
SHAKIR: When that which covers covered the lote-tree;

053.017
YUSUFALI: (His) sight never swerved, nor did it go wrong!
PICKTHAL: The eye turned not aside nor yet was overbold.
SHAKIR: The eye did not turn aside, nor did it exceed the limit.

053.018
YUSUFALI: For truly did he see, of the Signs of his Lord, the Greatest!
PICKTHAL: Verily he saw one of the greater revelations of his Lord.
SHAKIR: Certainly he saw of the greatest signs of his Lord.

053.019
YUSUFALI: Have ye seen Lat. and 'Uzza,
PICKTHAL: Have ye thought upon Al-Lat and Al-'Uzza
SHAKIR: Have you then considered the Lat and the Uzza,

053.020
YUSUFALI: And another, the third (goddess), Manat?
PICKTHAL: And Manat, the third, the other?
SHAKIR: And Manat, the third, the last?

053.021
YUSUFALI: What! for you the male sex, and for Him, the female?
PICKTHAL: Are yours the males and His the females?
SHAKIR: What! for you the males and for Him the females!

053.022
YUSUFALI: Behold, such would be indeed a division most unfair!
PICKTHAL: That indeed were an unfair division!
SHAKIR: This indeed is an unjust division!

053.023
YUSUFALI: These are nothing but names which ye have devised,- ye and your fathers,- for which Allah has sent down no authority (whatever). They follow nothing but conjecture and what their own souls desire!- Even though there has already come to them Guidance from their Lord!
PICKTHAL: They are but names which ye have named, ye and your fathers, for which Allah hath revealed no warrant. They follow but a guess and that which (they) themselves desire. And now the guidance from their Lord hath come unto them.
SHAKIR: They are naught but names which you have named, you and your fathers; Allah has not sent for them any authority. They follow naught but conjecture and the low desires which (their) souls incline to; and certainly the guidance has come to them from their Lord.

053.024
YUSUFALI: Nay, shall man have (just) anything he hankers after?
PICKTHAL: Or shall man have what he coveteth?
SHAKIR: Or shall man have what he wishes?

053.025
YUSUFALI: But it is to Allah that the End and the Beginning (of all things) belong.
PICKTHAL: But unto Allah belongeth the after (life), and the former.
SHAKIR: Nay! for Allah is the hereafter and the former (life).

 

Section 2.  

53 : 26

26. Wakam min malakin fee alssamawati la tughnee shafaAAatuhum shay-an illa min baAAdi an ya/thana Allahu liman yashao wayarda

 

How many angels are there in the heavens whose intercession avails not anyone except those for whom Allah has given leave and those whom He has preferred!

53 : 27

27. Inna allatheena la yu/minoona bial-akhirati layusammoona almala-ikata tasmiyata al-ontha

Those who do not believe in the Hereafter give the angels names similar to those that are given to women!

53 : 28

28. Wama lahum bihi min AAilmin in yattabiAAoona illa alththanna wa-inna alththanna la yughnee mina alhaqqi shay-an

They have no knowledge about such matters and speculate. And verily speculation is no substitute for certitude!

53 : 29

29. FaaAArid AAan man tawalla AAan thikrina walam yurid illa alhayata alddunya

Turn away from him (O Mohammed) who avoids Our remembrance and aspires for the life of this world!

53 : 30

30. Thalika mablaghuhum mina alAAilmi inna rabbaka huwa aAAlamu biman dalla AAan sabeelihi wahuwa aAAlamu bimani ihtada

Such is the extent of their knowledge! Verily your Lord is best aware of him who has lost his way and He is best aware of him who has found it!

53 : 31

31. Walillahi ma fee alssamawati wama fee al-ardi liyajziya allatheena asaoo bima AAamiloo wayajziya allatheena ahsanoo bialhusna

To Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is upon the earth so that He may requite those who do evil with the equivalent of that which they have done and reward those who do good with a generous measure of goodness!

* * *

Context of Revelation : The following verse was revealed to rebuke the believers who did, indeed, offer regular worship and gave alms and performed righteous deeds as is expected of all Muslims, but seldom stopped bragging about their performances!

53 : 32

32. Allatheena yajtaniboona kaba-ira al-ithmi waalfawahisha illa allamama inna rabbaka wasiAAu almaghfirati huwa aAAlamu bikum ith anshaakum mina al-ardi wa-ith antum ajinnatun fee butooni ommahatikum fala tuzakkoo anfusakum huwa aAAlamu bimani ittaqa

Those who avoid cardinal sins and abominations, except the unintentional offences, for them your Lord is infinite in mercy! He is best aware of you, having created the first of you from dust and cared for you while you gestated inside the wombs of your mothers! Hence lay not claims to purity of souls! He is well aware of him among you who is truly abstemious! (R)


 OTHER TRANSLATIONS BY MUHSIN, YUSUFALI, PICKTHAL AND SHAKIR:

MUHSIN:

26. And there are many angels in the heavens, whose intercession will avail nothing except after Allh has given leave for whom He wills and pleases.

27. Verily, those who believe not in the Hereafter, name the angels with female names.

28. While they have no knowledge thereof. They follow but a guess, and verily, guess is no substitute for the truth.

29. Therefore withdraw (O Muhammad SAW) from him who turns away from Our Reminder (this Qur'n) and desires nothing but the life of this world.

30. That is what they could reach of knowledge. Verily, your Lord it is He Who knows best him who goes astray from His Path, and He knows best him who receives guidance.

31. And to Allh belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth, that He may requite those who do evil with that which they have done (i.e. punish them in Hell), and reward those who do good, with what is best (i.e. Paradise).

32. Those who avoid great sins (see the Qur'n, Verses: 6:152,153) and Al-Fawhish (illegal sexual intercourse, etc.) except the small faults, verily, your Lord is of vast forgiveness. He knows you well when He created you from the earth (Adam), and when you were fetuses in your mothers' wombs. So ascribe not purity to yourselves. He knows best him who fears Allh and keep his duty to Him [i.e. those who are Al-Muttaqn (pious - see V.2:2)].


053.026
YUSUFALI: How many-so-ever be the angels in the heavens, their intercession will avail nothing except after Allah has given leave for whom He pleases and that he is acceptable to Him.
PICKTHAL: And how many angels are in the heavens whose intercession availeth naught save after Allah giveth leave to whom He chooseth and accepteth.
SHAKIR: And how many an angel is there in the heavens whose intercession does not avail at all except after Allah has given permission to whom He pleases and chooses.

053.027
YUSUFALI: Those who believe not in the Hereafter, name the angels with female names.
PICKTHAL: Lo! it is those who disbelieve in the Hereafter who name the angels with the names of females.
SHAKIR: Most surely they who do not believe in the hereafter name the angels with female names.

053.028
YUSUFALI: But they have no knowledge therein. They follow nothing but conjecture; and conjecture avails nothing against Truth.
PICKTHAL: And they have no knowledge thereof. They follow but a guess, and lo! a guess can never take the place of the truth.
SHAKIR: And they have no knowledge of it; they do not follow anything but conjecture, and surely conjecture does not avail against the truth at all.

053.029
YUSUFALI: Therefore shun those who turn away from Our Message and desire nothing but the life of this world.
PICKTHAL: Then withdraw (O Muhammad) from him who fleeth from Our remembrance and desireth but the life of the world.
SHAKIR: Therefore turn aside from him who turns his back upon Our reminder and does not desire anything but this world's life.

053.030
YUSUFALI: That is as far as knowledge will reach them. Verily thy Lord knoweth best those who stray from His Path, and He knoweth best those who receive guidance.
PICKTHAL: Such is their sum of knowledge. Lo! thy Lord is Best Aware of him who strayeth, and He is Best Aware of him whom goeth right.
SHAKIR: That is their goal of knowledge; surely your Lord knows best him who goes astray from His path and He knows best him who follows the right direction.

053.031
YUSUFALI: Yea, to Allah belongs all that is in the heavens and on earth: so that He rewards those who do evil, according to their deeds, and He rewards those who do good, with what is best.
PICKTHAL: And unto Allah belongeth whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth, that He may reward those who do evil with that which they have done, and reward those who do good with goodness.
SHAKIR: And Allah's is what is in the heavens and what is in the earth, that He may reward those who do evil according to what they do, and (that) He may reward those who do good with goodness.

053.032
YUSUFALI: Those who avoid great sins and shameful deeds, only (falling into) small faults,- verily thy Lord is ample in forgiveness. He knows you well when He brings you out of the earth, And when ye are hidden in your mothers' wombs. Therefore justify not yourselves: He knows best who it is that guards against evil.
PICKTHAL: Those who avoid enormities of sin and abominations, save the unwilled offences - (for them) lo! thy Lord is of vast mercy. He is Best Aware of you (from the time) when He created you from the earth, and when ye were hidden in the bellies of your mothers. Therefor ascribe not purity unto yourselves. He is Best Aware of him who wardeth off (evil).
SHAKIR: Those who keep aloof from the great sins and the indecencies but the passing idea; surely your Lord is liberal in forgiving. He knows you best when He brings you forth from the earth and when you are embryos in the wombs of your mothers; therefore do not attribute purity to your souls; He knows him best who guards (against evil).

 

  Section 3

Context of Revelation : The following verses were revealed when some idolaters who had renounced heresy and embraced Islam were tempted into renouncing Islam and reverting back to idol worship by other idolaters on the assurance that, if they were paid money, they would bear the burden of their sins.

53 : 33

33. Afaraayta allathee tawalla

Did you (O Mohammed) observe him who retracted -

53 : 34

34. WaaAAta qaleelan waakda

Giving a little at first and then begrudging the rest?

53 : 35

35. aAAindahu AAilmu alghaybi fahuwa yara

Does he possess the knowledge of the Unseen so that he can look into the future?

53 : 36

36. Am lam yunabba/ bima fee suhufi moosa

Has not the warning contained in the Books of Moses reached him, -

53 : 37

37. Wa-ibraheema allathee waffa

And of Abraham who abided by all Our Commandments in full :

53 : 38

38. Alla taziru waziratun wizra okhra

That no laden soul shall share the burden of another?

53 : 39

39. Waan laysa lil-insani illa ma saAAa

And that man is rewarded only for that towards which he has striven?

53 : 40

40. Waanna saAAyahu sawfa yura

And that his endeavours shall be observed first -

53 : 41

41. Thumma yujzahu aljazaa al-awfa

 

And only then will he be given his full reward?

53 : 42

42. Waanna ila rabbika almuntaha

 

And that verily your Lord is the ultimate destination for all?

53 : 43

43. Waannahu huwa adhaka waabka

And that He it is who gives you joy as well as sorrow?

53 : 44

 

44. Waannahu huwa amata waahya

And that He it is who bestows life and inflicts death?

53 : 45

45. Waannahu khalaqa alzzawjayni alththakara waal-ontha

And that He created the two spouses, male and female -

53 : 46

46. Min nutfatin itha tumna

From the same drop of seed when it is ejaculated?

53 : 47

47. Waanna AAalayhi alnnash-ata al-okhra

And that He has ordained the ultimate Resurrection?

53 : 48

48. Waannahu huwa aghna waaqna

And that He it is who bestows affluence and imposes penury?

53 : 49

49. Waannahu huwa rabbu alshshiAAra

And that He is also the Lord of Sirius?

53 : 50

50. Waannahu ahlaka AAadan al-oola

And that He it is who destroyed the former tribe of Aad?

53 : 51

51. Wathamooda fama abqa

And the entire tribe of Thamud, with none to spare.

53 : 52

52. Waqawma noohin min qablu innahum kanoo hum athlama waatgha

And before them the folk of Noah! And verily they were even more wicked and arrogant

53 : 53

53. Waalmu/tafikata ahwa

And the township of Al-Mu'tafikah which He turned upside down -

53 : 54

54. Faghashshaha ma ghashsha

And that which inhumed them, it inhumed them!

53 : 55

55. Fabi-ayyi ala-i rabbika tatamara

Which then of your Lord's benefactions would you oppugn?

* * *

53 : 56

56. Hatha natheerun mina alnnuthuri al-oola

He is a warner like the other warners in the past!

53 : 57

57. Azifati al-azifatu

The threatened Hour is fast approaching!

53 : 58

58. Laysa laha min dooni Allahi kashifatun

None can disclose it save Allah.

53 : 59

59. Afamin hatha alhadeethi taAAjaboona

Marvel you then at this asseveration, -

53 : 60

60. Watadhakoona wala tabkoona

And laugh rather than weep -

53 : 61

61. Waantum samidoona

 

And preoccupy yourselves with your pastimes?

53 : 62

62. Faosjudoo lillahi waoAAbudoo

Instead, prostrate yourselves before Allah and serve Him! (R)


 OTHER TRANSLATIONS BY MUHSIN, YUSUFALI, PICKTHAL AND SHAKIR:

MUHSIN:

33. Did you (O Muhammad SAW) observe him who turned away (from Islm).

34. And gave a little, then stopped (giving)?

35. Is with him the knowledge of the unseen so that he sees?

36. Or is he not informed with what is in the Pages (Scripture) of Msa (Moses),

37. And of Ibrhim (Abraham) who fulfilled (or conveyed) all that (what Allh ordered him to do or convey),

38. That no burdened person (with sins) shall bear the burden (sins) of another,T>

39. And that man can have nothing but what he does (good or bad)[] ,

40. And that his deeds will be seen,

41. Then he will be recompensed with a full and the best recompense[]

42. And that to your Lord (Allh) is the End (Return of everything).

43. And that it is He (Allh) Who makes (whom He wills) laugh, and makes (whom He wills) weep;

44. And that it is He (Allh) Who causes death and gives life;

45. And that He (Allh) creates the pairs, male and female,

46. From Nutfah (drops of semen male and female discharges) when it is emitted;

47. And that upon Him (Allh) is another bringing forth (Resurrection);

48. And that it is He (Allh) Who gives much or a little (or gives wealth and contentment),

49.  And that He (Allh) is the Lord of Sirius (the star which the pagan Arabs used to worship);

50. And that it is He (Allh) Who destroyed the former 'Ad (people),

51. And Thamd (people). He spared none of them.

52. And the people of Nh (Noah) aforetime, verily, they were more unjust and more rebellious and transgressing [in disobeying Allh and His Messenger Nh (Noah) <><>].

53. And He destroyed the overthrown cities [of Sodom to which Prophet Lout (Lot) was sent].

54. So there covered them that which did cover (i.e. torment with stones).

55. Then which of the Graces of your Lord (O man!) will you doubt.

56. This (Muhammad SAW) is a warner (Messenger) of the (series of) warners (Messengers) of old[] .

57. The Day of Resurrection draws near,

58. None besides Allh can avert it, (or advance it, or delay it).

59. Do you then wonder at this recital (the Qur'n)?

60. And you laugh at it and weep not,

61. Wasting your (precious) lifetime in pastime and amusements (singing, etc.).

62. So fall you down in prostration to Allh, and worship Him (Alone).


053.033
YUSUFALI: Seest thou one who turns back,
PICKTHAL: Didst thou (O Muhammad) observe him who turned away,
SHAKIR: Have you then seen him who turns his back?

053.034
YUSUFALI: Gives a little, then hardens (his heart)?
PICKTHAL: And gave a little, then was grudging?
SHAKIR: And gives a little and (then) withholds.

053.035
YUSUFALI: What! Has he knowledge of the Unseen so that he can see?
PICKTHAL: Hath he knowledge of the Unseen so that he seeth?
SHAKIR: Has he the knowledge of the unseen so that he can see?

053.036
YUSUFALI: Nay, is he not acquainted with what is in the Books of Moses-
PICKTHAL: Or hath he not had news of what is in the books of Moses
SHAKIR: Or, has he not been informed of what is in the scriptures of Musa?

053.037
YUSUFALI: And of Abraham who fulfilled his engagements?-
PICKTHAL: And Abraham who paid his debt:
SHAKIR: And (of) Ibrahim who fulfilled (the commandments):

053.038
YUSUFALI: Namely, that no bearer of burdens can bear the burden of another;
PICKTHAL: That no laden one shall bear another's load,
SHAKIR: That no bearer of burden shall bear the burden of another-

053.039
YUSUFALI: That man can have nothing but what he strives for;
PICKTHAL: And that man hath only that for which he maketh effort,
SHAKIR: And that man shall have nothing but what he strives for-

053.040
YUSUFALI: That (the fruit of) his striving will soon come in sight:
PICKTHAL: And that his effort will be seen.
SHAKIR: And that his striving shall soon be seen-

053.041
YUSUFALI: Then will he be rewarded with a reward complete;
PICKTHAL: And afterward he will be repaid for it with fullest payment;
SHAKIR: Then shall he be rewarded for it with the fullest reward-

053.042
YUSUFALI: That to thy Lord is the final Goal;
PICKTHAL: And that thy Lord, He is the goal;
SHAKIR: And that to your Lord is the goal-

053.043
YUSUFALI: That it is He Who granteth Laughter and Tears;
PICKTHAL: And that He it is who maketh laugh, and maketh weep,
SHAKIR: And that He it is Who makes (men) laugh and makes (them) weep;

053.044
YUSUFALI: That it is He Who granteth Death and Life;
PICKTHAL: And that He it is Who giveth death and giveth life;
SHAKIR: And that He it is Who causes death and gives life-

053.045
YUSUFALI: That He did create in pairs,- male and female,
PICKTHAL: And that He createth the two spouses, the male and the female,
SHAKIR: And that He created pairs, the male and the female

053.046
YUSUFALI: From a seed when lodged (in its place);
PICKTHAL: From a drop (of seed) when it is poured forth;
SHAKIR: From the small seed when it is adapted

053.047
YUSUFALI: That He hath promised a Second Creation (Raising of the Dead);
PICKTHAL: And that He hath ordained the second bringing forth;
SHAKIR: And that on Him is the bringing forth a second time;

053.048
YUSUFALI: That it is He Who giveth wealth and satisfaction;
PICKTHAL: And that He it is Who enricheth and contenteth;
SHAKIR: And that He it is Who enriches and gives to hold;

053.049
YUSUFALI: That He is the Lord of Sirius (the Mighty Star);
PICKTHAL: And that He it is Who is the Lord of Sirius;
SHAKIR: And that He is the Lord of the Sirius;

053.050
YUSUFALI: And that it is He Who destroyed the (powerful) ancient 'Ad (people),
PICKTHAL: And that He destroyed the former (tribe of) A'ad,
SHAKIR: And that He did destroy the Ad of old

053.051
YUSUFALI: And the Thamud nor gave them a lease of perpetual life.
PICKTHAL: And (the tribe of) Thamud He spared not;
SHAKIR: And Samood, so He spared not

053.052
YUSUFALI: And before them, the people of Noah, for that they were (all) most unjust and most insolent transgressors,
PICKTHAL: And the folk of Noah aforetime, Lo! they were more unjust and more rebellious;
SHAKIR: And the people of Nuh before; surely they were most unjust and inordinate;

053.053
YUSUFALI: And He destroyed the Overthrown Cities (of Sodom and Gomorrah).
PICKTHAL: And Al-Mu'tafikah He destroyed
SHAKIR: And the overthrown cities did He overthrow,

053.054
YUSUFALI: So that (ruins unknown) have covered them up.
PICKTHAL: So that there covered them that which did cover.
SHAKIR: So there covered them that which covered.

053.055
YUSUFALI: Then which of the gifts of thy Lord, (O man,) wilt thou dispute about?
PICKTHAL: Concerning which then, of the bounties of thy Lord, canst thou dispute?
SHAKIR: Which of your Lord's benefits will you then dispute about?

053.056
YUSUFALI: This is a Warner, of the (series of) Warners of old!
PICKTHAL: This is a warner of the warners of old.
SHAKIR: This is a warner of the warners of old.

053.057
YUSUFALI: The (Judgment) ever approaching draws nigh:
PICKTHAL: The threatened Hour is nigh.
SHAKIR: The near event draws nigh.

053.058
YUSUFALI: No (soul) but Allah can lay it bare.
PICKTHAL: None beside Allah can disclose it.
SHAKIR: There shall be none besides Allah to remove it.

053.059
YUSUFALI: Do ye then wonder at this recital?
PICKTHAL: Marvel ye then at this statement,
SHAKIR: Do you then wonder at this announcement?

053.060
YUSUFALI: And will ye laugh and not weep,-
PICKTHAL: And laugh and not weep,
SHAKIR: And will you laugh and not weep?

053.061
YUSUFALI: Wasting your time in vanities?
PICKTHAL: While ye amuse yourselves?
SHAKIR: While you are indulging in varieties.

053.062
YUSUFALI: But fall ye down in prostration to Allah, and adore (Him)!
PICKTHAL: Rather prostrate yourselves before Allah and serve Him.
SHAKIR: So make obeisance to Allah and serve (Him).

 Index

 SURAH 54