SHAIKH MIR ASEDULLAH QUADRI
JUZ 1.1 SURAH AL-FATIHA (سورة الفاتحة)
Al-Fatiha | Sura #1| 7 verses | Makkan
بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ
In the name of Allah, the Most Compassionate and Most Merciful
Makkan Pagans used to say بِسْمِ اللَّاتِ وَالْعُزَّي [ I begin in the name of Lat and Uzza – names of their deities). Allah taught us to say بِسْمِ الله [ I begin in the name of Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ)].
The verse (بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ) has come 114 times in Quran, 113 times at the beginning of every Surah, except Sura At-Tauba, and once in the middle of the Sura al-Nahl as mentioned above.
The people who follow Shaf’ii School of thought consider it as part of Sura Al Fatiha. This is the reason they recite it loudly. The people who follow Hanafi school of thought, do not consider it part of Sura Al-Fatiha. Therefore like A’oodhu, they recite Bismillaahi also quietly (to themselves). Similarly they recite Aameen quietly (to themselves) as that is also not part of Surah Al Fatiha.
Rahman and Rahim (رَحْمَانٌ وَ رَحِيمٌ) meaning Most Compassionate and Most Merciful are the divine epithets [names of Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ)].
Rahm (رَحَمْ) is to turn towards someone with mercy. Ar-Rahmaan (الرَّحْمَـٰنِ), in comparison with Ar-Raheem (الرَّحِيمِ), is generalization of beneficence. To bring into being all the things from non-existence is called compassion (رحمانیت).
It is in Quran - هُوَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ لَكُم مَّا فِي الْأَرْضِ جَمِيعًا [He is the one who created everything, whatever is there on Earth for you.] (Al-Baqara - 29).
Compassion of Allah (رحمانیت) provides sustenance to everyone, believers and non-believers alike.
When Muslims with Sahih Iman do good deeds, the reward for their good deeds is ‘Mercifulness’ (رحیمیت). ‘Mercifulness’ (رحیمیت) will manifest special bounties for believers in the Hereafter (آخرت).
It is a general rule. If you work with reference to your life in this world, you will be rewarded accordingly. If you work with reference to your life in Hereafter, you will be awarded accordingly. But if you work as per the commandments of Allah Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) under the guidance of Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) with purity of intention, you will be rewarded abundantly in both the worlds.
Juz 1, Al-Fateha, Verse 2
الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ [ All praise is for Allah, the Sustainer of all worlds.]
Alhamdu lillah (الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ) 'all praise is for Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ)'. People say that the Laam (ل) in the Arabic word (الْحَمْدُ) denotes absoluteness, (اِسْتِغْرَاقْ), meaning all praise rests only in Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) and is exclusive for Him.The Arabic word (الله) is made-up of two syllables. "Al" and "Ilaah". "Al" means "The" and "Ilah" means "God". When these two syllables, which are the two units of the pronunciation, are combined, the letter "I" becomes silent and Al-Ilah, becomes Allah. And the meaning of Al-Ilaah is, Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ), the sole sustainer of all the things in the Cosmos.
Why all praise is only for Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) and not for anyone else? It is because, Allah's (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) existence is independent, of His own, and our existence is dependent upon Him. We were not there a hundred years ago and we will not be there a hundred years later. Our life and existence is contingent/temporary.No significant praise can be associated with a temporary/contingent thing? However, it does not mean that we will not recognize or appreciate the good deeds of human beings. We will surely praise the good work of individuals knowing well that all laudable qualities (محامد) and all eulogies (مدائح) are absolute for Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) and the goodness of human beings is the result of His bestowal on them.It is in Quran - مَّا أَصَابَكَ مِنْ حَسَنَةٍ فَمِنَ اللَّهِ ۖ [Virtue is from Allah Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ)".] (An-Nisa - 79).Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) is absolutely virtuous (خیرِ محض). Evil cannot be associated with His pious exalted divinity.
The meaning of the Arabic word Rab ( رَب ) is to bring up, to cherish and to carry the thing gradually to its excellence. You, we and everything in this Cosmos are creatures, every moment dependent upon Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) for our survival.
The Arabic word (عَوَالِمْ) is plural of عالَم. This is a generalized term for all worlds, like the world of human beings, the world of angels, the world of Jinns, the world of animals, etc.
The word عَالَمِينَ is different from عَوَالِمْ as it denotes the worlds belonging to 'sensible creatures'. Why Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) has used the word (عَالَمِينَ) in this verse? It is because, Quran addresses human beings and Jinns who are sensible creatures and are answerable for their deeds in Hereafter.
The word رَبُّ الْعَالَمِينَ denotes that there is only one Sustainer of all the worlds.
It is in Quran - لَيْسَ كَمِثْلِهِ شَيْءٌ [ There is nothing like Him. ] (Ash-shura - 11), and لَّا تُدْرِكُهُ الْأَبْصَارُ [ No eyes can encircle Him.] (Al-An'aam - 103).
Other than Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ), all references of divinity/god-ship associated with creatures/human beings are spurious. The simile of these misguided people is described in Quran - أَوْ كَظُلُمَاتٍ فِي بَحْرٍ لُّجِّيٍّ [ (The example of these people is like ) the darkness which is in the depths of oceans.] (Al-Noor - 40).
Juz 1, Al-Fateha, Verse 3
الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ [ The Compassionate, the Merciful.]
Rahman and Rahim (رَحْمَانٌ وَ رَحِيمٌ) meaning Compassionate and Merciful are the divine epithets [names of Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ)]. We have discussed briefly about it in the exegesis of verse (بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ).Juz 1, Al-Fateha, Verse 4
مَالِكِ يَوْمِ الدِّينِ [ The Lord of the Day of Judgment. ]
The meanings of Arabic word دِينٌ are judgment, religion, obedience, society, requital, retribution, etc. The word يَوْمٌ means day. The meaning of (مَالِكْ) is King, Owner, Lord.Why Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) is emphasizing that while He is Rahman and Rahim, He is also the Lord of the Day of Judgement?It is to remind that all human beings will be resurrected, and on the day of Judgment, they will be questioned about their deeds. The obedient servants will receive recompense/reward and tyrants and sinners will receive torment for their wrongful deeds.It is in Quran - يَوْمَئِذٍ يَصْدُرُ النَّاسُ أَشْتَاتًا لِّيُرَوْا أَعْمَالَهُمْ - فَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ خَيْرًا يَرَهُ - وَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ شَرًّا يَرَهُ [ That Day, people will depart separated (into groups) to be shown (the result of) their deeds. So whoever does an atom's weight of good, will see it, And whoever does an atom's weight of evil, will see it. ] (Az-Zalzala - 6-8)People should know that there is an efficient justice system of Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) in the cosmos and no one can get away with it in any manner whatsoever. Allah's (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) appointed law enforcers (angels) are spread all over doing their jobs extremely well. You cannot influence them or manipulate the system to get away with your evil deeds. We should not make the mistake of assuming that Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) has created this cosmos and left it to fend for itself. Remember, Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) is all Seeing and all Knowing. From here everyone of us will be relocated to another place, another world (عالَم). The date of relocation is known as the date of death. Our bodies which were given to us for use on this planet will remain here to be buried on Earth for their disposal. Unfortunately, most of us tend to stay oblivious to our reality. We should spend more time in the pursuit of opening our spiritual eyes.Allah"s (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) justice system is well defined and the job of every angel is clearly scripted. People should also know that for certain evil deeds, punishment is given instantaniously here in this world itself.Juz 1, Al-Fateha, Verse 5
إِيَّاكَ نَعْبُدُ وَإِيَّاكَ نَسْتَعِينُ [ We worship You (our servitude is only for You) and we seek help from You only. ]
What is polytheism? To believe in Allah’s (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) exclusive attributes to be existing in a servant/creature is 'polytheism' (شرک).What is apostasy? To deny Allah’s (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) exclusive attributes or not to believe in Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) is 'apostasy' (کُفر).No one from the practicing Muslims denies Allah’s (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) existence or associates His exclusive attributes with any creature. Allah's (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) existence (وجود) is independent and our existence is dependent upon Him. When the Servant's existence is not his own, then all his attributes are also not his own. For Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ), everything is absolute and for Servant, everything is contingent, relative and bestowal of Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ). This is the Iman of every practicing Muslim in the world. With this belief, all types of polytheism and apostasy is rooted out.Makkan pagans believed in a specific deity/God for a specific work. When they were told that there is only one God, absolutely Powerful (قادِرِ مطلق), is creator (خلّاق) and living (محي) and Obliterator (مميت), they said - أَجَعَلَ الْآلِهَةَ إِلَـٰهًا وَاحِدًا [What! (the Prophet ﷺ) has made all deities/gods into one God. This definitely is an astonishing thing.] (Saad - 5).Juz 1, Al-Fateha, Verse 6
اهْدِنَا الصِّرَاطَ الْمُسْتَقِيمَ [ Lead us (Let us walk) on the straight path.]
Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) has shown us the straight path of Islam and all Muslims follow this straight path. Then why this prayer?
It is because Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) knew that after the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and his rightly guided Caliphs (خلفائے راشدین), many new sects will emerge who will misguide Muslims and lead them astray. Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) also knew that individual Muslims and Muslim Ummah, as a whole, may face difficulties, and infliction may befall on them from several directions. This is the reason we are commanded to supplicate O' Our Lord, Lead us and let us walk on the straight path of Islam throughout our lives. The supplication looks abstract, but it is a very comprehensive supplication.
Juz 1, Al-Fateha, Verse 7
صِرَاطَ الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيْهِمْ غَيْرِ الْمَغْضُوبِ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلَا الضَّالِّينَ [The path of those on whom you have awarded Your bestowal; and not the path of those who have been subjected to Your Wrath and the path of those who have gone astray.]
The above Quranic verse indicates that there are two major paths, one is the straight path that belongs to the people on whom Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) has showered His bounties. The other is the deviated path which belongs to the people who have have been subjected to Allah's (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) wrath and who have gone astray.
(i) Who are the people who have been referred to in verse الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيْهِمْ [ On whom Allah has showered His bounties]?
The Quran answers this question.
It is in Quran - فَأُولَـٰئِكَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِم مِّنَ النَّبِيِّينَ وَالصِّدِّيقِينَ وَالشُّهَدَاءِ وَالصَّالِحِينَ ۚ وَحَسُنَ أُولَـٰئِكَ رَفِيقًا [These are the people upon whom Allah has bestowed favors. They are among the prophets, truthful people, the martyrs, and the righteous, and what a majestic company they are.] (An-Nisa - 69)
The above is a straight forward commandment and is important that, if we want to be on the straight path of Islam, we need to follow and be in the company of the people described in the verse.
(1) Prophets (النَّبِيِّينَ). We follow Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and all the other prophets.
(2) Truthful people (الصِّدِّيقِينَ). We follow Hadhrat Abu Bakr Siddique (رضئ الله تعالى عنه) who is the most truthful of all in Muslim Ummah and all the others who follow his example.
(3) Martyrs (الشُّهَدَاءِ). We follow Hadhrat Umar, Hadhrat Usman and Hadhrat Ali (رضي الله تعالى عنهم اجمعين) as they were rightly guided Caliphs (خلفائے راشدین) martyred in the way of Islam.
(4) Righteous people (الصَّالِحِينَ) - We follow Imam Abu Hanifa, Imam Shafa’ii, Imam Malik, and Imam Ahmad bin Hambal (رضي الله تعالى عنهم اجمعين). We also follow Shaikh Abdul Qader Jeelani, Khaja Moinuddin Chishti, Ahmad Kabir Rafaa’i, Bahauddin Naqshand, Abul Hasan Ali Shazli and others (رحمة لله عليهم اجمعين). Our teachers/Shuyookh in religion are also included among the righteous people. The righteous scholars of Tafseer al-Quran, Ahadith, Fiqh and other Islamic subjects are also included in this category.Since the supreme evidences of the verse (أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيْهِمْ) are the Companions of Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and his pupils, no one is allowed to downgrade or disrespect them and claim that they were apostates. There are some deviant sects like Deobandis who claim that if a person says all Sahabah were Kafir, he still remains a Muslim. Shias also claim that after Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), most of the Sahabah deviated from the path of Islam. (استغفرُالله العظيم)How did the Quran reached us in all authenticity? It reached us in a continuous narration from the Companions of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم); particularly from Hadhrat Uthman (رضئ الله تعالی عنه), Hadhrat Ali (رضئ الله تعالی عنه), Hadhrat Zayd bin Thabit (رضئ الله تعالی عنه), Hadhrat Abdullah bin Mas’ud (رضئ الله تعالی عنه), Hadhrat Ubay bin Ka’ab (رضئ الله تعالی عنه), etc. If you discredit them, call them outside the fold of Islam, then how the holy Quran will remain a continuous narration (متواتر)?
(ii) Who are the people who have been referred in verse غَيْرِ الْمَغْضُوبِ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلَا الضَّالِّينَ [and not the path of those who have been subjected to Your Wrath and the path of those who have gone astray] ?
The meanings of wrath (غَضَبٌ) is 'to punish and impose penalty on the wrongdoers'.
The meaning of (الْمَغْضُوبِ عَلَيْهِمْ) is 'those who are sinful and guilty'.
The meaning of (الضَّالِّينَ) is 'disbelievers and ignorant people'.
Allah (عَزَّ وَجَلَّ) has joined (الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيْهِمْ) with (غَيْرِ الْمَغْضُوبِ) in this verse in consideration of the fact that both the scales of fear and mercy are balanced. Balancing between fear and mercy is the completion of faith.