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Abdullah Yusuf Ali     

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Surah Al Falaq

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيمِ

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

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Introduction and Summary

This early Makkan Surah provides the antidote to superstition and fear by teaching us to seek refuge in Allah from every kind of ill arising from outer nature and from dark and evil plottings and envy on the part of others.

C.293 (The running Commentary, in Rhythmic Prose)

It is Allah Who brings forth light from darkness,

life and activity from death, spiritual

Enlightenment from ignorance and superstition

Banish fear, and trust His Providence

No danger, then, from the outer world,

No secret plottings from perverted wills,

No disturbance of your happiness or good

Can affect the fortress of your inmost soul.

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيمِ


قُلْ أَعُوذُ بِرَبِّ الْفَلَقِ ﴿١

1.     Say:

I seek refuge with the Lord of the Dawn,

C6301. In Allah's created world, there are all kinds of forces and counter-forces, especially those put in motion by beings who have been endowed with some sort of will.

The forces of good may be compared to light, and those of evil to darkness.

Allah can cleave the depths of darkness and produce light (6:96), and therefore we should cast off fear and take refuge in divine guidance and goodness.

C6302. Falaq is the Dawn or Daybreak, the cleaving of darkness and the manifestation of light.

This may be understood in various senses:

1.     literally, when the darkness of the night is at its worst, rays of light pierce through and produce the dawn;

2.     when the darkness of ignorance is at its worst, the light of Allah pierces through the soul and gives it enlightenment: (24:35);

3.     non-existence is darkness, and life and activity may be typified by light.

مِن شَرِّ مَا خَلَقَ ﴿٢  

2.     From the mischief of created things;

C6303. See n. 6301 above.

Our trust in Allah is the refuge from every kind of fear and superstition, every kind of danger and evil.

Three special kinds of mischief are specified in the next three verses, against which our best guard is our trust in Allah, the Light of the heavens and the earth. They are:

1.      physical dangers, typified by darkness.

2.      physical dangers within us, typified by Secret Arts, and

3.     physical dangers from without us, resulting from a perverted will, which seeks to destroy any good that we enjoy.

وَمِن شَرِّ غَاسِقٍ إِذَا وَقَبَ ﴿٣

3.     From the mischief of Darkness as it overspreads;

C6304. The darkness of the night, physical darkness, is a good type of physical dangers and difficulties. Many people are afraid of physical darkness, and all are afraid of physical injuries, accidents, and calamities.

We should not fear, but having taken reasonable precautions, trust in Allah.

وَمِن شَرِّ النَّفَّاثَاتِ فِي الْعُقَدِ ﴿٤

4.     From the mischief of those who practice Secret Arts;

C6305. Those (feminine) who blow on knots', this having been a favourite form of witchcraft practised by perverted women. Such secret arts cause psychological terror.

They may be what is called magic, or secret plottings, or the display of false and seductive charms (3:14), or the spreading of false and secret rumours or slanders to frighten men or deter them from right action.

There is fraud in such things, but men are swayed by it. They should cast off fear and do their duty.

وَمِن شَرِّ حَاسِدٍ إِذَا حَسَدَ ﴿٥

5.     And from the mischief of the envious one as he practices envy.

C6306. Malignant envy, translated into action, seeks to destroy the happiness or the material or spiritual good enjoyed by other people.

The best guard against it is trust in Allah with purity of heart.

 

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