Surah Al-Ahqaf Arabic
Surah Al-Ahqaf English Translation
In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
- The Revelation of the Book is from Allah the Exalted in Power, Full of Wisdom.
- We created not the heavens and the earth and all between them but for just ends, and for a Term Appointed: But those who reject Faith turn away from that whereof they are warned.
- Say: “Do ye see what it is ye invoke besides Allah? Show me what it is they have created on earth, or have they a share in the heavens bring me a book (revealed) before this, or any remnant of knowledge (ye may have), if ye are telling the truth!
- And who is more astray than one who invokes besides Allah, such as will not answer him to the Day of Judgment, and who (in fact) are unconscious of their call (to them)?
- And when mankind are gathered together (at the Resurrection), they will be hostile to them and reject their worship (altogether)!
- When Our Clear Signs are rehearsed to them, the Unbelievers say, of the Truth when it comes to them: “This is evident sorcery!”
- Or do they say, “He has forged it”? Say: “Had I forged it, then can ye obtain no single (blessing) for me from Allah. He knows best of that whereof ye talk (so glibly)! Enough is He for a witness between me and you! And he is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.”
- Say: “I am no bringer of new-fangled doctrine among the messengers, nor do I know what will be done with me or with you. I follow but that which is revealed to me by inspiration; I am but a Warner open and clear.”
- Say: “See ye? If (this teaching) be from Allah, and ye reject it, and a witness from among the Children of Israel testifies to its similarity (with earlier scripture), and has believed while ye are arrogant, (how unjust ye are!) truly, Allah guides not a people unjust.”
- The Unbelievers say of those who believe: “If (this Message) were a good thing, (such men) would not have gone to it first, before us!” And seeing that they guide not themselves thereby, they will say, “this is an (old,) falsehood!”
- And before this, was the Book of Moses as a guide and a mercy: And this Book confirms (it) in the Arabic tongue; to admonish the unjust, and as Glad Tidings to those who do right.
- Verily those who say, “Our Lord is Allah,” and remain firm (on that Path),- on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.
- Such shall be Companions of the Gardens, dwelling therein (for aye): a recompense for their (good) deeds.
- We have enjoined on man kindness to his parents: In pain did his mother bear him, and in pain did she give him birth. The carrying of the (child) to his weaning is (a period of) thirty months. At length, when he reaches the age of full strength and attains forty years, he says, “O my Lord! Grant me that I may be grateful for Thy favour which Thou has bestowed upon me, and upon both my parents, and that I may work righteousness such as Thou mayest approve; and be gracious to me in my issue. Truly have I turned to Thee and truly do I bow (to Thee) in Islam.”
- Such are they from whom We shall accept the best of their deeds and pass by their ill deeds: (They shall be) among the Companions of the Garden: a promise! of truth, which was made to them (in this life).
- But (there is one) who says to his parents, “Fie on you! Do ye hold out the promise to me that I shall be raised up, even though generations have passed before me (without rising again)?” And they two seek Allah�s aid, (and rebuke the son): “Woe to thee! Have faith! for the promise of Allah is true.” But he says, “This is nothing but tales of the ancients!”
- Such are they against whom is proved the sentence among the previous generations of Jinns and men, that have passed away; for they will be (utterly) lost.
- And to all are (assigned) degrees according to the deeds which they (have done), and in order that (Allah) may recompense their deeds, and no injustice be done to them.
- And on the Day that the Unbelievers will be placed before the Fire, (It will be said to them): “Ye received your good things in the life of the world, and ye took your pleasure out of them: but today shall ye be recompensed with a Penalty of humiliation: for that ye were arrogant on earth without just cause, and that ye (ever) transgressed.”
- Mention (Hud) one of �Ad�s (own) brethren: Behold, he warned his people about the winding Sand-tracts: but there have been warners before him and after him: “Worship ye none other than Allah: Truly I fear for you the Penalty of a Mighty Day.”
- They said: “Hast thou come in order to turn us aside from our gods? Then bring upon us the (calamity) with which thou dost threaten us, if thou art telling the truth?”
- He said: “The Knowledge (of when it will come) is only with Allah: I proclaim to you the mission on which I have been sent: But I see that ye are a people in ignorance!”..
- Then, when they saw the (Penalty in the shape of) a cloud traversing the sky, coming to meet their valleys, they said, “This cloud will give us rain!” “Nay, it is the (Calamity) ye were asking to be hastened!- A wind wherein is a Grievous Penalty!
- “Everything will it destroy by the command of its Lord!” Then by the morning they – nothing was to be seen but (the ruins of) their houses! thus do We recompense those given to sin!
- And We had firmly established them in a (prosperity and) power which We have not given to you (ye Quraish!) and We had endowed them with (faculties of) hearing, seeing, heart and intellect: but of no profit to them were their (faculties of) hearing, sight, and heart and intellect, when they went on rejecting the Signs of Allah; and they were (completely) encircled by that which they used to mock at!
- We destroyed aforetime populations round about you; and We have shown the Signs in various ways, that they may turn (to Us).
- Why then was no help forthcoming to them from those whom they worshipped as gods, besides Allah, as a means of access (to Allah)? Nay, they left them in the lurch: but that was their falsehood and their invention.
- Behold, We turned towards thee a company of Jinns (quietly) listening to the Qur�an: when they stood in the presence thereof, they said, “Listen in silence!” When the (reading) was finished, they returned to their people, to warn (them of their sins).
- They said, “O our people! We have heard a Book revealed after Moses, confirming what came before it: it guides (men) to the Truth and to a Straight Path.
- “O our people, hearken to the one who invites (you) to Allah, and believe in him: He will forgive you your faults, and deliver you from a Penalty Grievous.
- “If any does not hearken to the one who invites (us) to Allah, he cannot frustrate (Allah�s Plan) on earth, and no protectors can he have besides Allah: such men (wander) in manifest error.”
- See they not that Allah, Who created the heavens and the earth, and never wearied with their creation, is able to give life to the dead? Yea, verily He has power over all things.
- And on the Day that the Unbelievers will be placed before the Fire, (they will be asked,) “Is this not the Truth?” they will say, “Yea, by our Lord!” (One will say:) “Then taste ye the Penalty, for that ye were wont to deny (Truth)!”
- Therefore patiently persevere, as did (all) messengers of inflexible purpose; and be in no haste about the (Unbelievers). On the Day that they see the (Punishment) promised them, (it will be) as if they had not tarried more than an hour in a single day. (Thine but) to proclaim the Message: but shall any be destroyed except those who transgress?
Transliteration of Surah Al-Ahqaf
Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem
- Tanzeelul Kitaabi minal laahil-‘Azeezil Hakeem
- Maa khalaqnas samaawaati wal arda wa maa bainahumaaa illaa bilhaqqi wa ajalim musammaa; wallazeena kafaroo ‘ammaaa unziroo mu’ridoon
- Qul ara’aytum maa tad’oona min doonil laahi aroonee maazaa khalaqoo minal ardi am lahum shirkun fis samaawaati eetoonee bi kitaabim min qabli haazaaa aw asaaratim min ‘ilmin in kuntum saadiqeen
- Wa man adallu mimmany yad’oo min doonil laahi mallaa yastajeebu lahooo ilaa Yawmil Qiyaamati wa hum’an du’aaa’ihim ghaafiloon
- Wa izaa hushiran naasu kaanoo lahum a’daaa’anw wa kaanoo bi’ibaadatihim kaafireen
- Wa izaa tutlaa ‘alaihim Aayaatunaa baiyinaatin qaalal lazeena kafaroo lilhaqqi lammaa jaaa’ahum haazaa sihrum mubeen
- Am yaqooloonaf taraahu qul inif taraituhoo falaa tamlikoona lee minal laahi shai’an Huwa a’lamu bimaa tufeedoona feehi kafaa bihee shaheedam bainee wa bainakum wa Huwal Ghafoorur Raheem
- Qul maa kuntu bid’am minal Rusuli wa maaa adreee ma yuf’alu bee wa laa bikum in attabi’u illaa maa yoohaaa ilaiya wa maaa ana illaa nazeerum mubeen
- Qul ara’aytum in kaana min ‘indil laahi wa kafartum bihee wa shahida shaahidum mim Banee Israaa’eela ‘alaa mislihee fa aamana wastak bartum innal laaha laa yahdil qawmaz zaalimeen (section 1)
- Wa qaalal lazeena kafaroo lillazeena aamanoo law kaana khairam maa sabaqoonaaa ilyh; wa iz lam yahtadoo bihee fasa yaqooloona haazaaa ifkun qadeem
- Wa min qablihee kitaabu Moosaaa imaamanw-wa rahmah; wa haazaa Kitaabum musad diqul lisaanan ‘Arabiyyal liyunziral lazeena zalamoo wa bushraa lilmuhsineen
- Innal lazeena qaaloo Rabbunal laahu summas taqaamoo falaa khawfun ‘alaihim wa laahum yahzanoon
- Ulaaa’ika Ashabul Jannati khaalideena feehaa jazaaa’am bimaa kaano ya’maloon
- Wa wassainal insaana biwaalidaihi ihsaana; hamalat hu ummuhoo kurhanw-wa wada’at hu kurhanw wa hamluhoo wa fisaaluhoo salaasoona shahraa; hattaaa izaa balagha ashuddahoo wa balagha arba’eena sanatan qaala Rabbi awzi’ neee an ashkura ni’matakal lateee an’amta ‘alaiya wa ‘alaa waalidaiya wa an a’mala saalihan tardaahu wa aslih lee fee zurriyyatee; innee tubtu ilaika wa innee minal muslimeen
- Ulaaa’ikal lazeena nata qabbalu ‘anhum ahsana maa ‘amiloo wa natajaawazu ‘an saiyiaatihim feee Ashaabil jannati Wa’das sidqil lazee kaanoo yoo’adoon
- Wallazee qaala liwaali daihi uffil lakumaaa ata’idanineee an ukhraja wa qad khalatil quroonu min qablee wa humaa yastagheesaanil laaha wailaka aamin inna wa’dal laahi haqq, fa yaqoolu maa haazaaa illaaa asaateerul awwaleen
- Ulaaa’ikal lazeena haqqa ‘alaihimul qawlu feee umamin qad khalat min qablihim minal jinni wal insi innahum kaanoo khaasireen
- Wa likullin darajaatum mimmaa ‘amiloo wa liyuwaf fiyahum a’maalahum wa hum laa yuzlamoon
- Wa Yawma yu’radul lazeena kafaroo ‘alan Naari azhabtum taiyibaatikum fee hayaatikumud dunyaa wastam ta’tum bihaa fal Yawma tujzawna ‘azaabal hooni bimaa kuntum tastakbiroona fil ardi bighairil haqqi wa bimaa kuntum tafsuqoon (section 2)
- Wazkur akhaa ‘Aad, iz anzara qawmahoo bil Ahqaafi wa qad khalatin nuzuru mim baini yadaihi wa min khalfiheee allaa ta’budooo illal laaha inneee akhaafu ‘alaikum ‘azaaba Yawmin ‘azeem
- Qaaloo aji’tanaa li taa fikanaa ‘an aalihatinaa fa’tinaa bimaa ta’idunaaa in kunta minas saadiqeen
- Qaala innamal ‘ilmu indal laahi wa uballighukum maaa ursiltu bihee wa laakinneee araakum qawman tajhaloon
- Falammaa ra awhu ‘aaridam mustaqbila awdiyatihim qaaloo haazaa ‘aaridum mumtirunaa; bal huwa masta’jaltum bihee reehun feehaa ‘azaabun aleem
- Tudammiru kulla shai’im bi-amri Rabbihaa fa asbahoo laa yuraaa illaa masaakinuhum; kazaalika najzil qawmal mujrimeen
- Wa laqad makkannaahum feemaaa im makkannaakum feehi waj’alnaa lahum sam’anw wa absaaranw wa af’idatan famaaa aghnaa ‘anhum sam’uhum wa laaa absaaruhum wa laaa af’idatuhum min shai’in iz kaanoo yajhadoona bi Aayaatil laahi wa haaqa bihim maa kaanoo bihee yastahzi’oon (section 3)
- Wa laqad ahlaknaa ma hawlakum minal quraa wa sarrafnal Aayaati la’allahum yarji’oon
- Falaw laa nasarahumul lazeenat takhazoo min doonil laahi qurbaanan aalihatam bal dalloo ‘anhum’ wa zaalika ifkuhum wa maa kaanoo yaftaroon
- Wa iz sarafinaaa ilaika nafaram minal jinni yastami’oonal Quraana falammaa hadaroohu qaalooo ansitoo falammaa qudiya wallaw ilaa qawmihim munzireen
- Qaaloo yaa qawmanaaa innaa sami’naa Kitaaban unzila mim ba’di Moosa musaddiqal limaa baina yadihi yahdeee ilal haqqi wa ilaa Tareeqim Mustaqeem
- Yaa qawmanaaa ajeeboo daa’iyal laahi wa aaminoo bihee yaghfir lakum min zunoobikum wa yujirkum min ‘azaabin aleem
- Wa mal laa yujib daa’iyal laahi falaisa bimu’jizin fil ardi wa laisa lahoo min dooniheee awliyaaa’; ulaaa ika fee dalaalim mubeen
- Awalam yaraw annal laahal lazee khalaqas samaawaati wal arda wa lam ya’ya bikhal qihinna biqaadirin ‘alaaa aiyuhyiyal mawtaa; balaaa innahoo ‘alaa kulli shai’in Qadeer
- Wa Yawma yu’radul lazeena kafaroo ‘alan naari alaisa haaza bil haqq; qaaloo balaa wa Rabbinaa; qaala fazooqul ‘azaaba bimaa kuntum takfuroon
- Fasbir kamaa sabara ulul ‘azmi minar Rusuli wa laa tasta’jil lahum; ka annahum Yawma yarawna maa yoo’adoona lam yalbasooo illaa saa’atam min nahaar; balaagh; fahal yuhlaku illal qawmul faasiqoon (section 4)
Surah Al-Ahqaf Tafseer in English
It is derived from the sentence idh andhara qauma-hu bil Ahqaf-i of verse 21.
Period of Revelation
It is determined by an historical event that has been mentioned in vv. 29-32. This incident of the visit of the jinn and their going back after listening to the Qur’an had occurred, according to agreed traditions of the Hadith and biographical literature, at the time when the Holy Prophet had halted at Makkah during his return journey from Ta’if to Makkah. And according to all authentic historical traditions he had gone to Ta’if three years before the Hijrah; therefore it is determined that this Surah was sent down towards the end of the 10th year or in the early part of the 11th year of the Prophethood.
The 10th year of the Prophethood was a year of extreme persecution and distress in the Holy prophet’s life. The Quraish and the other tribes had continued their boycott of the Bani Hashim and the Muslims for three years and the Holy Prophet and the people of his family and Companions lay besieged in Shi’b Abi Talib. The Quraish had blocked up this locality from every side so that no supplies of any kind could reach the besieged people. Only during the Hajj season they were allowed to come out and buy some articles of necessity. But even at that time whenever Abu Lahab noticed any of them approaching the market place or a trading caravan he would call out to the merchants exhorting them to announce forbidding rates of their articles for them, and would pledge that he himself would buy those articles so that they did not suffer any loss. This boycott which continued uninterrupted for three years had broken the back of the Muslims and the Bani Hashim; so much so that at times they were even forced to eat grass and the leaves of trees.
At last, when the siege was lifted this year, Abu Talib, the Holy Prophet’s uncle, who had been shielding him for ten long years, died, and hardly a month later his wife, Hadrat Khadijah, who had been a source of peace and consolation for him ever since the beginning of the call, also passed away. Because of these tragic incidents, which closely followed each other, the Holy Prophet used to refer to this year as the year of sorrow and grief.
After the death of Hadart Khadijah and Abu Talib the disbelievers of Makkah became even bolder against the Holy Prophet. They started treating him even more harshly. So much so that it became difficult for him to step out of his house. Of these days Ibn Hisham has related the incident that a Quraish scoundrel one day threw dust at him openly in the street.
At last, the Holy Prophet left for Ta’if with the intention that he should invite the Bani Thaqif to Islam, for even if they did not accept Islam, they might at least be persuaded to allow him to work for his mission peacefully. He did not have the facility of any conveyance at that time, and traveled all the way to Ta’if on foot. According to some traditions, he had gone there alone, but according to others, he was accompanied by Zaid bin Harithah. He stayed at Ta’if for a few days, and approached each of the chiefs and nobles of the Bani Thaqif and talked to him about his mission. But not only they refused to listen to him, but plainly gave him the notice that he should leave their city, for they feared that his preaching might “spoil” their younger generation. Thus, he was compelled to leave Ta’if. When he was leaving the city, the chiefs of Thaqif set their slaves and scoundrels behind him, who went on crying at him, abusing him and petting him with stones for a long way from either side of the road till he became broken down with wounds and his shoes were filled with blood. Wearied and exhausted he took shelter in the shade of the wall of a garden outside Ta’if, and prayed:
“O God, to Thee I complain of my weakness, little resource, and lowliness before men. O Most Merciful, Thou art the Lord of the weak, and Thou art my Lord. To whom wilt Thou confide me? To one afar who will misuse me? Or to an enemy to whom Thou hast given power over me?If Thou art not angry with me I care not. Thy favor is more wide for me. I take refuge in the light of Thy countenance by which the darkness is illumined, and the things of this world and the next are rightly ordered, lest Thy anger descend upon me or Thy wrath light upon me. It is for Thee to be satisfied until Thou art well pleased. There is no power and no might save in Thee.” (Ibn Hisham:A. Guillaume’s Translation, p. 193).
Grieved and heart broken when he returned and reached near Qarn al-Manazil, he felt as though the sky was overcast by clouds. He looked up and saw Gabriel in front of him, who called out:” Allah has heard the way your people have responded. He has, therefore, sent this angel in charge of the mountains. You may command him as you please.” Then the angel of the mountains greeted him and submitted :”If you like I would overturn the mountains from either side upon these people.” The Holy Prophet replied : “No, but I expect that Allah will create from their seed those who will worship none but Allah, the One.” (Bukhari, Dhikr al Mala’ikah; Muslim: Kitab al-Maghazi; Nasa’i :Al-Bauth).
After this he went to stay for a few days at Makkah, perplexed as to how he would face the people of Makkah, who, he thought, would be still further emboldened against him after hearing what had happened at Ta’if. It was here that one night when he was reciting the Qur’an in the Prayer, a group of the jinn happened to pass by and listened to the Qur’an, believed in it, and returned to their people to preach Islam. Thus, Allah gave His Prophet the good news that if the men were running away from his invitation, there were many of the jinn, who had become its believers, and they were spreading his message among their own kind.
Subject Matter and Topics
Such were the conditions when this Surah was sent down. Anyone who keeps this background in view, on the one hand, and studies this Surah, on the other, will have no doubt left in his mind that this is not at all the composition of Muhammad (upon whom be Allah’s peace), but “a Revelation from the All Mighty, All Wise Allah.” For nowhere in this Surah, from the beginning to the end, does one find even a tinge of the human feelings and reactions, which are naturally produced in a man who is passing through such hard conditions. Had it been the word of Muhammad (upon whom be Allah’s peace) whom the occurrence of personal griefs one after the other and the countless and the recent bitter experience at Ta’if had caused extreme anguish and distress, it would have reflected in some degree the state of the mind of the man who was the subject of these afflictions and griefs. Consider the prayer that we have cited above: it contains his own language its every word is saturated with the feelings that he had at the time. But this Surah which was sent down precisely in the same period and was recited even by him under the same conditions, is absolutely free from every sign or trace of the time.
The subject matter of the Surah is to warn the disbelievers of the errors in which they were involved, and also resisted arrogantly, and were condemning the man who was trying to redeem them. They regarded the world as a useless and purposeless place where they were not answerable to anyone. They thought that invitation to Tauhid was false and stuck to the belief that their own deities were actually the associates of Allah. They were not inclined to believe that the Qur’an was the Word of the Lord of the worlds. They had a strange erroneous concept of apostleship on the basis of which they were proposing strange criteria of judging the Holy Prophet’s claim to it. In their estimation one great proof of Islam’s not being based on the truth was that their elders and important chiefs of the tribes and so called leaders of their nation were not accepting it and only a few young men, and some poor folks and some slaves had affirmed faith in it. They thought that Resurrection and life after death and the rewards and punishments of the Hereafter were fabrications whose occurrence was absolutely out of the question.
In this Surah each of these misconceptions has been refuted in a brief but rational way, and the disbelievers have been warned that if they would reject the invitation of the Qur’an and the Prophethood of the Prophet Muhammad (upon whom be Allah’s peace) by prejudice and stubbornness instead of trying to understand its truth rationally, they would only be preparing for their own doom.