Sunday, 24 May,

Are you from amongst the Heedless ones?

Posted in (07) Tafsīr Sūraħ Al A'rāf tagged , , , , at 9:04 pm by Ibn Abi Ukhti

بسم الله الرحمان الرحيم

السلام عليكم و رحمة الله و بركاته

الحمد الله

Allah سبحانه و تعالى says in Surat Al A’raaf,

وَلَقَدْ ذَرَأْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ كَثِيرًا مِّنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنسِ ۖ لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ لَّا يَفْقَهُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ لَّا يُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ آذَانٌ لَّا يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ كَالْأَنْعَامِ بَلْ هُمْ أَضَلُّ ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْغَافِلُونَ

“And surely, We have created many of the jinns and mankind for Hell. They have hearts wherewith they understand not, they have eyes wherewith they see not, and they have ears wherewith they hear not (the truth). They are like cattle, nay even more astray; those! They are the heedless ones.”[1]

Out of His fairness, Allah سبحانه و تعالى describes to us the heedless people so we can take guidance and leave the wrong path we are upon currently towards Siraat Al Mustaqeem.

Al Hasan, Al Suddi, Mujahid & ‘Abdullah bin al-‘Abbas رضي الله عنهم said regarding the word ذَرَأْنَا that it means “We Created.”[2] We is used for Allah سبحانه و تعالى as in a royal ‘We’ not a plural ‘We’

وَلَقَدْ ذَرَأْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ

Al Haafidh Ibn Kathir رحمه الله wrote in his tafsir explaining this phrase,

“We made a share in the Fire.”

كَثِيرًا مِّنَ الْجِنِّ وَالإِنْسِ

He then continues,

“We prepared them for it by their performance of the deeds of its people. When Allah سبحانه و تعالى intended to create the creation, He knew what their work will be before they existed. He wrote all this in a Book, kept with Him, fifty thousand years before He created the heavens and earth. As Imam Muslim رحمه الله has recorded a hadith Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه و سلم saying, “Verily, Allah decided the destination and due measurement of the creation fifty thousand years before He created the heavens and earth, and His Throne was over the water.” [3]

لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ لَّا يَفْقَهُونَ بِهَا

Then Allah سبحانه و تعالى describes the people from amongst the Jinn and Humans he has created for Jahannam starting off by mention their condition of their hearts as Rasul Allah صلى الله عليه و سلم said as a part of a longer hadith,

“…Beware, in the body there is a flesh; if it is sound, the whole body is sound, and if it is corrupt, the whole body is corrupt, and behold, it is the heart.”[4]

Al Haafidh Ibn Hajr Al ‘Asqalaani رحمه الله said,

“The heart has been singled out for this because it is the leader of the body, and through the purification of the leader the subjects become purified, and with his corruption, they become corrupted.”[5]

As for the Tafsir of the ayah, Imam Al Tabari رحمه الله says,

“These people are those who are created for Jahannam from His creation; who do not ponder with it (i.e. the heart) the ayaat of Allah سبحانه و تعالى nor contemplate the proofs of His Oneness nor do they think over the arguments proving His Messengers عليهم صلاة و السلام. However, they do know the Oneness of their Lord سبحانه و تعالى and they are acquainted with the reality of Prophet Hood of the Prophets عليهم صلاة و السلام. Thus, our Lord سبحانه و تعالى has described them with not understanding with it (i.e. heart) because of their turning away from the Truth and forsaking of their pondering over truthfulness of success and extent of thanklessness.”[6]

Imam Al Qurtubi رحمه الله said,

“Because they don’t benefit from it (what is revealed) and they do not contemplate upon the rewards nor fear the punishments.”[7]

Mujahid bin Jabr رحمه الله said,

“They don’t understand with it (i.e. heart) the affairs of hereafter.”[8]

Imam Al Baghawi رحمه الله writes,

“They don’t realise good and guidance.”[9]

This phrase of the ayah talks about those people who have no interest in gaining the knowledge of the Deen because when they are told to remember Allah سبحانه و تعالى and learn about His Oneness and study the Messengers عليهم صلاة و السلام, they refuse to do so and prefer to remain ignorant. Thus, when they are reminded of the signs pointing to the Oneness of Allah سبحانه و تعالى, they refuse to know them even though they believe in them. And since they have no knowledge, they lack the fear of Jahannam and love of Jannah.

Then Allah سبحانه و تعالى continues,

وَلَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ لَّا يُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا

It is noted from the Tafasir that this section of the ayah has similar meaning to the previous one but in addition the scholars write that they (the people mentioned in this ayah) do not see the Truth. [10]

وَلَهُمْ آذَانٌ لَّا يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا

Imams Al Tabari , Al Baghawi & Al Shawkani رحمهم الله say regarding this verse,

“The Book of Allah, rather than thinking and contemplating about them, they turn away from them.” [11]

Imam Al Qurtubi رحمه الله writes regarding the verse,

“Admonish.”

Even though these people hear the ayaat of Allah سبحانه و تعالى, they do not contemplate and think over it rather they turn away from them.

أُولَـٰئِكَ كَالْأَنْعَامِ بَلْ هُمْ أَضَلُّ ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْغَافِلُونَ

Mujahid رحمه الله said regarding this,

“(After mentioning the other characteristics) then he made their mention like the cattle then made them even worse than cattle and then finally mentioned that they are the heedless ones.”[12]

Imam Al Qurtubi رحمه الله says,

“Because they are not guided towards the rewards thus they are like cattle whose intention is to just eat and drink. But they (the people) are more misguided since the cattle can at least understand its benefit and harm and obeys its owner but they are even opposite of that. They forsake contemplation (of ayaat of Allah سبحانه و تعالى) and turn away from Paradise and Hell.”[13]

The benefit of the people lie in learning the ‘Aqeedah of Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama‘ah and fundamentals of Islam, but there are some heedless people who do not understand this importance of this and thus are more misguided that cattle who at least comprehend their benefit and loss whereas these people do not. Allah سبحانه و تعالى has named the Qur’an as Al Furqan which means a criterion that distinguishes between the Truth and falsehood. If this criterion is not recited and studied, then it is a great possibility one would fall into actions that are forbidden in the Shari‘ah of Rasul Allah صلى الله عليه و سلم as one of the poets said,

عَرَفْتُ شَرْ لَا لِشَرْ **** لَكِنْ تُلَا فِيْهِ

وَ مَنْ لَا يَعْرِفُ شَرْ**** جَدِيْر أَنْ يَقَعَ فِيْهِ

“I learned evil not to indulge in it,
rather to abstain from it,
and whoever does not know what evil is,
it is likely that he will fall into it.”

May Allah سبحانه و تعالى make us amongst those who benefit greatly from this ayah. Ameen

And Allah سبحانه و تعالى knows best.


[1] Surat Al A’raaf, ayah 179

[2] Tafsir Al Tabari

[3] Tafsir Ibn Kathir

[4] Sahih Al Bukhari & Sahih Muslim

[5] Diseases of the Hearts and its Cure’ compiler’s foreword

[6] Tafsir Al Tabari

[7] Tafsir Al Qurtubi

[8] Fath Al Qadeer

[9] Tafsir Al Baghawi

[10] Tafasir Al Tabari, Al Qurtubi, Al Fayruzabadi, Fath Al Qadeer

[11] Tafasir Al Tabari, Tafsir Al Baghawi & Fath Al Qadeer [the last 2 Imams write , “The Book of Allah,” or its like not the rest]

[12] Tafsir Al Tabari

[13] Tafsir Al Qurtubi

3 Comments »

  1. seeker-of-knowledge said,

    MashAllah, this a fantastic resource for Tafseer.

    May Allah (SWT) grant you Jannah al-Firdous.

    I have a few tafseer requests…………..

    I hope you can mail me your contact info.

    Wassalaam.

  2. Assalamu alaykum

    Jazakallahu khayran for this excellent blog.
    This is one of the best and most beneficial blogs I have seen online.

    Please continue this great work.

  3. A Sister said,

    Assalamu Alykum Warahamtullah

    Great work, MashAllah…may Allah SWT reward you with the best…is it possible to contact you? I needed some help…

    JazakAllahu Khair,


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