72. Surah Al-Jinn | The Jinn
Surah Al-Jinn Arabic
English Translation of Surah Al-Jinn
In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
- Say: It has been revealed to me that a company of Jinns listened (to the Qur�an). They said, �We have really heard a wonderful Recital!
- �It gives guidance to the Right, and we have believed therein: we shall not join (in worship) any (gods) with our Lord.
- �And Exalted is the Majesty of our Lord: He has taken neither a wife nor a son.
- �There were some foolish ones among us, who used to utter extravagant lies against Allah;
- �But we do think that no man or spirit should say aught that untrue against Allah.
- �True, there were persons among mankind who took shelter with persons among the Jinns, but they increased them in folly.
- �And they (came to) think as ye thought, that Allah would not raise up any one (to Judgment).
- �And we pried into the secrets of heaven; but we found it filled with stern guards and flaming fires.
- �We used, indeed, to sit there in (hidden) stations, to (steal) a hearing; but any who listen now will find a flaming fire watching him in ambush.
- �And we understand not whether ill is intended to those on earth, or whether their Lord (really) intends to guide them to right conduct.
- �There are among us some that are righteous, and some the contrary: we follow divergent paths.
- �But we think that we can by no means frustrate Allah throughout the earth, nor can we frustrate Him by flight.
- �And as for us, since we have listened to the Guidance, we have accepted it: and any who believes in his Lord has no fear, either of a short (account) or of any injustice.
- �Amongst us are some that submit their wills (to Allah), and some that swerve from justice. Now those who submit their wills – they have sought out (the path) of right conduct:
- �But those who swerve,- they are (but) fuel for Hell-fire�-
- (And Allah�s Message is): “If they (the Pagans) had (only) remained on the (right) Way, We should certainly have bestowed on them Rain in abundance.
- “That We might try them by that (means). But if any turns away from the remembrance of his Lord, He will cause him to undergo a severe Penalty.
- “And the places of worship are for Allah (alone): So invoke not any one along with Allah;
- “Yet when the Devotee of Allah stands forth to invoke Him, they just make round him a dense crowd.”
- Say: “I do no more than invoke my Lord, and I join not with Him any (false god).”
- Say: “It is not in my power to cause you harm, or to bring you to right conduct.”
- Say: “No one can deliver me from Allah (If I were to disobey Him), nor should I find refuge except in Him,
- “Unless I proclaim what I receive from Allah and His Messages: for any that disobey Allah and His Messenger,- for them is Hell: they shall dwell therein for ever.”
- At length, when they see (with their own eyes) that which they are promised,- then will they know who it is that is weakest in (his) helper and least important in point of numbers.
- Say: “I know not whether the (Punishment) which ye are promised is near, or whether my Lord will appoint for it a distant term.
- “He (alone) knows the Unseen, nor does He make any one acquainted with His Mysteries,-
- “Except a messenger whom He has chosen: and then He makes a band of watchers march before him and behind him,
- “That He may know that they have (truly) brought and delivered the Messages of their Lord: and He surrounds (all the mysteries) that are with them, and takes account of every single thing.”
Transliteration of Surah Al-Jinn
Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem
- Qul oohiya ilaiya annna hustama’a nafarum minal jinni faqaalooo innaa sami’naa quraanan ajaba
- Yahdeee ilar rushdi fa aamannaa bihee wa lan nushrika bi rabbinaaa ‘ahada
- Wa annahoo Ta’aalaa jaddu Rabbinaa mat’takhaza saahibatanw wa laa walada
- Wa annahoo kaana yaqoolu safeehunaa ‘al allahi shatata
- Wa annaa zanannaaa al lan taqoolal insu wal jinnu ‘al allahi kaziba
- Wa annahoo kaana rijaalun minal insi ya’oozoona bi rijaalin minal jinni fa zaadoohum rahaqa
- Wa annahum zannoo kamaa zanantum al lany yab’asal laahu ‘ahada
- Wa annaa lamasnas samaaa’a fa wajadnaahaa muli’at harasan shadeedanw wa shuhuba
- Wa annaa kunnaa naq’udu minhaa maqaa’ida lis’sam’i famany yastami’il ‘aana yajid lahoo shihaabar rasada
- Wa annaa laa nadreee asharrun ureeda biman fil ardi ‘am ‘araada bihim rabbuhum rashada
- Wa annaa minnas saalihoona wa minnaa doona zaalika kunnaa taraaa’iqa qidada
- Wa annaa zanan naaa al lan nu’jizal laaha fil ardi wa lan nu’jizahoo haraba
- Wa annaa lammaa sami’nal hudaaa aamannaa bihee famany yu’min bi rabbihee falaa yakhaafu bakhsanw wa laa rahaqa
- Wa annaa minnal muslimoona wa minnal qaasitoona faman aslama fa ulaaa’ika taharraw rashada
- Wa ammal qaasitoona fa kaanoo li jahannama hataba
- Wa alla wis taqaamoo ‘alat tareeqati la asqaynaahum maa’an ghadaqa
- Linaftinahum feeh; wa many yu’rid ‘an zikri rabbihee yasluk hu ‘azaaban sa’ada
- Wa annal masaajida lil laahi falaa tad’oo ma’al laahi ‘ahada
- Wa annahoo lammaa qaama ‘abdul laahi yad’oohu kaadoo yakoonoona ‘alaihi libada
- Qul innamaaa ad’oo rabbee wa laaa ushriku biheee ‘ahada
- Qul innee laaa amliku lakum darranw wa laa rashada
- Qul innee lany yujeeranee minal laahi ‘ahadunw, wa lan ajida min doonihee multahada
- Illaa balaagham minal laahi wa risaalaatih; wa many ya’sil laaha wa rasoolahoo fa inna lahoo naara jahannama khaalideena feehaaa ‘abada
- Hattaaa izaa ra aw maa yoo’adoona fasaya’lamoona man ad’afu naasiranw wa aqallu ‘adada
- Qul in adreee a qareebum maa too’adoona am yaj’alu lahoo rabbeee ‘amada
- ‘Aalimul ghaibi falaa yuzhiru alaa ghaibiheee ‘ahada
- Illaa manir tadaa mir rasoolin fa innahoo yasluku min baini yadaihi wa min khalfihee rasada
- Liya’lama an qad ablaghoo risaalaati rabbihim wa ahaata bi maa ladaihim wa ahsaa kulla shai’in ‘adada
Tafseer in English Surah Al-Jinn
“Al-Jinn” is the name of this Surah as well as the title of its subject matter, for in it the event of the Jinn’s hearing the Qur’an and returning to their people to preach Islam to them, has been related in detail.
Period of Revelation
According to a tradition related in Bukhari and Muslim, on the authority of Hadrat Abdullah bin Abbas, once the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) was going to Visit the Fair of Ukaz with some of his Companions, On the way be led the Fajr Prayer at Nakhlah. At that time a company of the jinn happened to pass that way. When they heard the Quran being recited, they tarried and listened to it attentively. This very event has been described in this Surah.
Most of the commentators, on the basis of this tradition, believe that this relates to the Holy Prophet’s well known journey to Taif, which had taken place three years before the Hijrah in the 10th year of the Prophethood. But this is not correct for several reasons. The jinn’s hearing the Qur’an during the journey to Taif has been related in Al-Ahqaf 29-32. A cursory reading of those verses shows that the jinn who had believed after hearing the Qur’an on that occasion were already believers in the Prophet Moses and the previous scriptures. On the contrary, vv. 2- 7 of this surah clearly show that the jinn who heard the Qur’an on this occasion were polytheists and deniers of the Hereafter and Prophethood. Then, it is confirmed historically that in his journey to Taif none accompanied the Holy Prophet except Hadrat Zaid bin Harithah. On the contrary, concerning this journey Ibn Abbas says that the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) was accompanied by some of his Companions. Furthermore, the traditions also agree that in that journey the jinn heard the Qur’an when the Holy Prophet had stopped at Nakhlah on his return journey from Taif to Makkah, and in this journey, according to the traditions of Ibn Abbas, the event of the jinn’s hearing the Qur’an occurred when the Holy Prophet was going to Ukaz from Makkah. Therefore, in view of these reasons what seems to be correct is that in Surah Al-Ahqaf and Surah Al Jinn, one and the same event has not been narrated, but these were two separate events, which took place during two separate journeys.
As far as Surah Al-Ahqaf is concerned, it is agreed that the event mentioned in it occurred on the return journey from Taif in the 10th year of Prophethood. As for the question, when this second event took place, its answer is not given by the tradition of Ibn Abbas, nor any other historical tradition shows as to when the Holy Prophet had gone to the Fair of Ukaz along with some of his Companions. However, a little consideration of vv 8-10 of this surah shows that this could only be an event of the earliest stage of Prophethood. In these verses it has been stated that before the appointment of the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) to Divine Mission the jinn used to have one or another opportunity to eavesdrop in the heavens in order to hear news of the unseen, but after it they suddenly found that angels had been set as guards and meteorites were being shot on every side so that they could find no place of safety from where they could hear the secret news. Thereupon they had set about searching for the unusual thing that had occurred on the earth, or was going to occur, because of which the security measures had been tightened up. Probably since then many companies of the jinn must have been moving about in search of the unusual occurrence and one of them after having heard the Qur’an from the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) must have formed the opinion that that was the very thing for the sake of which all the gates of the heavens had been shut against the jinn.
Reality of Jinn
Before one starts the study of this Surah one must clearly know what is the reality of the jinn so as to avoid any possible mental confusion. Many people of the modern times are involved in the misunderstanding that the jinn are not real, but only a figment of the ancient superstition and myths. They have not formed this opinion on the basis that they have known all the realities and truths about the universe and have thus discovered that the jinn do not exist. They cannot claim to possess any such knowledge either. But they have assumed without reason and proof that nothing exists in the universe except what they can see, whereas the sphere of human perceptions as against the vastness of this great universe is not even comparable to a drop of water as against the ocean. Here, the person who thinks that what he does not perceive, does not exist, and what exists must necessarily be perceived, in fact, provides a proof of the narrowness of his own mind. With this mode of thought, not to speak of the jinn, man cannot even accept and acknowledge any reality, which he cannot directly experience and observe, and he cannot even admit the existence of God, to say nothing of admitting any other unseen reality.
Those of the Muslims who have been influenced by modernism, but cannot deny the Qur’an either, have given strange interpretations of the clear statements of the Qur’an about the jinn, Iblis and Satan. They say that this does not refer to any hidden creation, which may have its own independent existence, but it sometimes implies man’s own animal forces, which have been called Satan, and sometimes it implies savage and wild mountain tribes, and sometimes the people who used to listen to the Qur’an secretly. But the statements of the Qur’an in this regard are so clear and explicit that these interpretations bear no relevance to them whatever.
The Qur’an frequently mentions the jinn and the men in a manner as to indicate that they are two separate creations. For this, see Al Araf: 38, Hind : 119, Ha Mim As-Sajdah: 25,29, Ahqaf: 18, Adh Dhariyat: 56, and the entire surah Ar-Rahman, which bears such clear evidence as to leave no room to regard the jinn as a human species.
In Surah Al-Araf: 12, Al Hijr : 26-27 and Ar-Rahman : 14-19, it has been expressly stated that man was created out of clay and jinn out of fire.
In Surah Al Hijr: 27, it has been said that the jinn had been created before man. The same thing is testified by the story of Adam and Iblis, which has been told at seven different places in the Qur’an, and at every place it confirms that Iblis was already there at the creation of man. Moreover, in surah Al-Kahf: 50, it has been stated that Iblis belonged to the jinn.
In surah Al-Araf: 27, it has been stated in clear words that the jinn see the human beings but the human beings do not see them.
In surah Al-Hijr: 16-l8, surah As- Saaffat: 6-10 and surah Al-Mulk: 5, it has been said that although the jinn can ascend to the heavens, they cannot exceed a certain limit; if they try to ascend beyond that limit and try to hear what goes on in the heavens, they are not allowed to do so, and if they try to eavesdrop they are driven away by meteorites. By this the belief of the polytheistic Arabs that the jinn possess the knowledge of the unseen, or have access to Divine secrets, has been refuted. The same error has a]so been refuted in Saba: 14.
Al-Baqarah: 30-34 and Al- Kahf: 50 show that Allah has entrusted man with the vicegerency of the earth and the men are superior to the jinn. Although the jinn also have been given certain extraordinary powers and abilities an example of which is found in An-Naml 39, yet the animals likewise have been given some powers greater than man, but these are no argument that the animals are superior to man.
The Qur’an also explains that the jinn, like men, are a creation possessed of power and authority, and they, just like them, can choose between obedience and disobedience, faith and disbelief. This is confirmed by the story of Satan and the event of the jinn affirming the faith as found in Surahs Al-Ahqaf and Al-Jinn.
At scores of places in the Qur’an, it has also been stated that Iblis at the very creation of Adam had resolved to misguide mankind, and since then the Satanic jinn have been persistently trying to mislead man, but they do not have the power to overwhelm him and make him do something forcibly. However, they inspire him with evil suggestions, beguile him and make evil seem good to him. For this, see An-Nisa 117- 120, Al-Araf: 11-17, Ibrahim: 22, Al-Hijr: 30-42, An-Nahl 98-100, Bani Israil 61-65.
The Qur’an also tells us that in the pre Islamic ignorance the polytheistic Arabs regarded the jinn as associates of God, worshiped them and thought they were descended from God. For this, see A1-An’am: 100, Saba : 40-41, As Saffat: 158.
From these details, it becomes abundantly clear that the jinn have their own objective existence and are a concealed creation of an entirely different species from man. Because of their mysterious qualities, ignorant people have formed exaggerated notions and concepts about them and their powers, and have even worshiped them, but the Qur’an has explained the whole truth about them, which shows what they are and what they are not.
Theme and Topics
In this Surah in vv. 1-15, it has been told what was the impact of the Qur’an on the company of the jinn when they heard it and what they said to their fellow jinn when they returned to them. Allah, in this connection, has not cited their whole conversation but only those particular things which were worthy of mention. That is why the style is not that of a continuous speech but sentences have been cited so as to indicate that they said this and this. If one studies these sentences spoken by the jinn carefully, one can easily understand the real object of the narration of this event of their affirming the faith and or mentioning this conversation of theirs with their people in the Qur’an. The explanations that we have given of their statements in our Notes will be of further help in understanding this object.
After this, in vv 16-l8, the people have been admonished to the effect:”If you refrain from polytheism and follow the way of righteousness firmly, you will be blessed; otherwise if you turn away from the admonition sent down by Allah, you will meet with a severe punishment.” Then, in vv. 19-23, the disbelievers of Makkah have been reproached, as if to say: When the Messenger of Allah calls you towards Allah, you surround and mob him from every side, whereas the only duty of the Messenger is to convey the messages of Allah. He does not claim to have any power to bring any gain or cause any harm to the people.” Then, in vv. 24-25 the disbelievers have been warned to the effect: “Today you are trying to overpower and suppress the Messenger seeing that he is helpless and friendless, but a time will come when you will know who in actual fact is helpless and friendless. Whether that time is yet far off, or near at hand, the Messenger has no knowledge thereof, but it will come to pass in any case.” In conclusion, the people have been told: The Knower of the unseen is Allah alone. The Messenger receives only that knowledge which Allah is pleased to give him. This knowledge pertains to matters connected with the performance of the duties of Prophethood and it is delivered to him in such security which does not admit of any external interference whatever.