Recognizing Allah through Some of His Ayaat
Mentioned in the previous ayaat was how obstinate and unmindful of consequences the disbelievers and polytheists were. Since such evils are caused when people remain unaware of Allah and His unmatched knowledge and power, the present ayaat provide the antidote. Here, Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala cites some samples of His Knowledge and Power, and of blessings and favors bestowed on human beings. He says,
Introducing Himself to the people Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala states that He is Faliq [فَالِقُ]. The word faliq is from the root letters fa-laam-qaf and it means “to split, to crack, to divide, to separate two things”. Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala is the One Who splits, cracks or tears. Who does He cleave? Hab [حَب] and nawa [نَّوَى]. Hab are the edible seeds and grains such as lentils and peas while nawa are the inedible seeds such as orange seeds or mango pit.
Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala states that He causes the seed grain and the fruit stone to split and sprout in the ground, producing various types, colors, shapes, and tastes of grains and produce. If we were to do this we would have crushed or damaged the seed. The most a farmer can do is to remove impediments from the growth path of the tender bud. But the real job is done by Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala. He brings the living plant from the seed grain and the fruit stone, which is a lifeless and inanimate object. He brings out a living bird from an inanimate egg or a lifeless egg from a living bird. Human input has nothing to do with it.
He Who does all this is Allah, the One and Only without partners, then how are you deluded? What makes you deviate from the Truth and worship others besides Him? In other words people are being asked when you acknowledge all of this is being done by Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala alone then why are you knowingly straying away to strange directions, such as taking self-carved idols as your removers of difficulties and fulfillers of needs and thus the objects of your worship.
Ayah 96 – Night for Rest is a Blessing
He is the Creator of light and darkness as He said in the beginning of the Surah, “And originated the darkness and the light,” Indeed, Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala causes the darkness of the night to disappear and brings forth the day thus bringing brightness to the world and light to the horizon while dissipating darkness and ending the night with its depth of darkness and starting the day with its brightness and light.
In Ayah 96 again the word Faliq has been used which indicates One Who splits the morning that is One Who tears the dark layer of darkness apart and brings the morning out. In this Ayah, Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala reminds us of His ability to create diversified things in opposites, testifying to His perfect greatness and supreme power. He states that He is the Cleaver of the daybreak and mentioned its opposite, when He said, “…and night for rest…” meaning created darkness in order for the creation to become halt and rest during it. Both day and night are a blessing for the mankind. It is in the day that a person conducts business transactions and domestic chores. And at night he returns home to rest after hard day’s work. If the day and night were not created people would have been working twenty four hours without rest. Absence of sleep would have disturbed lives. The creation of day and night portrays the wisdom of Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala that He has set upon not only human beings but on all living creatures the weight of sleep in a manner that one is compelled to stop working and go to sleep. As the time of dusk approaches birds and beasts head for their nests and homes. Mankind stops its working and looks for a place to rest. Silence reigns. Darkness aids in sleep whereas light is not conducive to sleep.
Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala further says that He created “…the sun and moon for calculation…” The sun and the moon have specific orbits, according to a term appointed with magnificent precision that never changes or alters. Both the sun and the moon have distinct positions that they assume in summer and winter, effecting changes in the length of night and day. The sun and moon have been created so that people can keep account of time, and keep track of days and weeks. Both sun and moon have a set routine they neither come out before time nor set early.
All of this occurs according to the decree and determination of the Almighty Who is never resisted or contradicted. Meaning the sunrise, sunset or using sun for determining time is not happening by itself. It is not possible that such a perfect system is taking place on its own. This indicates that there is Someone really Mighty that the sun and moon are in His control. He is the Knower of all things and nothing ever escapes His knowledge, not even the weight of an atom on earth or in heavens. Allah often mentions the creation of the night, the day, the sun and the moon and then ends His Speech by mentioning His attributes of power and knowledge, as in this Ayah [6:96] and we find a similar pattern in Surah Yaseen Ayaat 37 and 38 and in Surah Fussilat Ayah 12.
Ayah 97 – Purpose of Creating Stars
Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala tells us that He has created the stars for human beings to take benefit from. How does one benefit from the stars? When one looks up towards the sky he doesn’t find a black sheet rather millions of stars are twinkling brightly. They also help sea travelers to chart their course in the darkness of nights when it is not easy to do. The point made here is that one should rise above heedlessness and shortsightedness and see that these stars are also there observing the command of their Maker. Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala has detailed clear proofs for knowledgeable people to take benefit from. Knowledgeable people are those who have sound minds and are able to recognize the truth and avoid falsehood.
Ayah 98 – This World is Only a Temporary Abode
“And it is He who produced you from one soul,” refers to Adam `alayhi salaam. The word mustaqar [مُسْتَقَرٌ] is from “qarar”. Qarar means to settle down. Therefore mustaqar denotes a place or time of rest, habitation or dwelling. The word mustawda’ [مُسْتَوْدَعٌ] means to keep something with someone temporarily for a few days for protection.
There are many probabilities in the interpretation of these two words. Some commentators say that mustaqar is the mother’s womb where the fetus stays and mustawda’ is the grave where a person stays temporarily for protection. If the body is not buried in the mud the corpse will rot. Others say mustaqar is the earth where a person lives and mustawda’ is the grave. Thirdly, it is said that mustaqar in terms of time is the worldly life or the time that person stays in dunya while mustawda’ is the time of departure from the earth. A person stays in this dunya for some time and then moves on to the Akhirah.
This ayah shows a mirror to those who have sold their souls to the veneer of glamour; to the craze for things and trends they envy in their fellow beings. They have forgotten that their place is elsewhere that they have to return to their Creator and that there is a journey ahead to the Hereafter. Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala ends this ayah by saying that these revelations are only for those who comprehend and understand Allah’s Words and its meanings.
Ayah 99 – Don’t Just Eat Fruit But Also Reflect on its Different Stages
It is Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala Who sends down water in due measure as a blessing and provision for the servants, relief and means of survival for the creatures and mercy from Allah for His creation. Through this water come out nabaat [نَبَاتَ] meaning plantation, vegetation or anything that the earth produces. As result of the rain different types of plantation comes out and the earth becomes lush and green. We may be watering our plants every day but one rain shower refreshes up everything. From the green produce and trees, seeds and fruit grow lined on top of each other in clusters like an ear or spike of grain. We see grapes that are bunched together. There is corn on the cob arranged one next to the other. When we open a pomegranate it’s all piled up one on another. As the fruit ripens it comes lower and lower within our reach to be easily picked up for eating.
The fruits appear similar yet their taste is so different. For example the leaves are similar in shape and appearance, yet different in the shape and taste. And the kind of fruit each plant produces is different. There are green grapes as well as purple grapes, and so many types of berries. They receive the same water but bring forth so much variety for us.
Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala ends the ayah by advising us to not just eat fruit but reflect on it. Reflect on its different stages. The fruit doesn’t grow in an instant. First the plant sprouts from the seed, then the flowers appears, then small fruits begin to show up and then we wait for their ripening till we can eat them. Contemplate the ability of the Creator of these fruits, Who brought them into existence after they were dry wood, and they later became grapes and dates; and similar is the case with the various colors, shapes, tastes and fragrance of whatever Allah created. In these are signs and proofs that testify to the perfect ability, wisdom and mercy of He Who created these things for people who believe in Allah and obey His Messengers.
– We learn that the sun and moon, the day and night function according to how Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala has scheduled them. Therefore, we should not complain why the day is so long or night is short. It is the decree of Allah.
– Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala has created day for working and night for resting. Therefore, we should follow this schedule.
– We use the lunar calendar for ibadaah to determine months and the solar calendar to determine Salah timings. This indicates both the sun and moon are used for calculating time.
– There is a purpose behind every creation of Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala. We should look around us and observe each of His Ayaat and reflect on them. Those people who have knowledge only they will benefit from these signs.
– We learn that the beginning of humanity was from one man. Believing in this is part of our emaan. It is humiliating to attribute man’s evolution from an animal.
– For each person there is a mustaqar and mustawda’; a beginning and an end. We focus so much on the beginning and ignore the end. Parents plan baby showers and create baby books for their children. When they grow up they show them, “This is when you were born. These were your first words,” and so on. But we don’t say a word about the Hereafter. The final and eternal home. We keep preparing them for this life but not the next while this life is only temporary.
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