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Monday, April 11, 2011

My Best Sentence In The Al Quran

The best sentence in the Al Quran is chapter 2 verse 30:

"I know what ye know not."

“Surely I know what you do not know.”

“Surely I know that which ye know not.”

"I know that which you do not know."

The above are the various translations from the learners of Al Quran. The Arabic sentence is “aAAlamu ma la taAAlamoona”. The story is this. Allah swt decided that He wanted to create a new creature (man) whom to become the manager of earth. However, to this “announcement” the Angels replied on the negative part of man. They said:

qaloo atajAAalu feeha man yufsidu feeha wayasfiku alddimaa wanahnu nusabbihu bihamdika wanuqaddisu laka

They said: "Wilt Thou place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood?- whilst we do celebrate Thy praises and glorify Thy holy (name)?"

What! wilt Thou place in it such as shall make mischief in it and shed blood, and we celebrate Thy praise and extol Thy holiness?

Wilt thou place therein one who will do harm therein and will shed blood, while we, we hymn Thy praise and sanctify Thee?

"Will You place therein those who will make mischief therein and shed blood, - while we glorify You with praises and thanks and sanctify You."

The Meaning of Khalifa

The word khalifa means successor. The four people who took leadership after Prophet Muhammad (sallal laa hu ala Muhammad sallal laa hu alaihi wasallam) are also commonly known as successors. The next sentence spoken by the angels also explains the word khalifa.

Many great theologians said that the angels knew of the ‘other side of man’. This cannot be as only the Creator knows his creation as “He is the lord of the creation” Rabbul ala meen’ 1:1.( العالمين creation)

So where did the angels get the information that the successor will ‘shed blood and spoil the land’? Unless there was some observable evidence. The clue lies in their reply to Allah swt.

qaloo – They (angels) said

atajAAalu feeha – as a result of (this) make (new creation)

man yufsidu feeha– as a result(the creation) mars or spoils{ on the ground (ardli)}

wayasfiku alddimaa – spill blood (inferring sharp object is used)

What I am getting by this translation is getting a picture of violence and turbulence living on the ground (referred to arldli in Arabic). The word yufsidu comes from the word fasad which means decay, rot, decompose, become rotten, be spoiled, be putrid and so on.

The angels said spoils, decomposition and then violent shedding of blood. The predecessors of khalifas are violent creatures apparently attacking each other. The decomposition of bodies were more than the apparent attacks. This was what the angels saw on the ground. They saw full of dead bodies and attacks. Apparently, the creation before man had built in natural growth in them(sharp edges enough to gore another creature) to attack each other violently. The violence ends up in death everywhere. Decomposition was rampant.

So when Allah swt announced that there will be a successor on earth, the angels questioned and brought up to the attention of Allah swt what happened among the creation before man. They deduced that the successor might be more violent than the first one. I need to explore what kind of creation before the khalifa? But for now Allah swt answer ““aAAlamu ma la taAAlamoona” is the best sentence in the Al Quran.

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