Beautiful Recitation of Surat Al Taghabun
This is one of the short surahs which was revealed in Madinah. There is some discussion over certain verses which might have been revealed in Makkah.
The word ghaban in Arabic is when you have paid an extortionate price, and been ripped off. It is about loss.
The surah is about loss for disbelievers because they wasted their opportunity to believe and be part of the community and loss for some believers, who did not invest their time wisely. Taghabun is loss and gain at the same time.
Destruction of the world
It begins with the glorification of Allah Almighty, who created the world with perfect harmony and precision, which we are ruining.
Whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is on the earth glorifies Allah. His is the dominion, and to Him belong all the praises and thanks, and He is Able to do all things. (64:1)
Sadly we have ruined this perfection and the disastrous effects of this are all around us. Our planet, through global warming, and the rising temperatures and how we have polluted the land, sea and atmosphere. He told us not to ruin the earth after it was perfected for us.
He it is Who created you, then some of you are disbelievers and some of you are believers. And Allah is All- Seer of what you do. (64:2)
He has created the heavens and the earth with truth, and He shaped you and made good your shapes. And to Him is the final Return. (64:3)
He knows what is in the heavens and on earth, and He knows what you conceal and what you reveal. And Allah is the All- Knower of what is in the breasts (of men). (64:4)
Resistance to the Message
There is a warning for those who are against the divine message. We see this attitude previously in other surahs, like Surat al Anam, that people were adamant in their disbelief. We saw this behaviour towards previous messengers as well. They challenge the Prophet (peace be on him) and make excuses not to believe. For instance they would say they cannot relate to them, so they want humans. When they are sent humans, they say they don’t want a human. They simply do not want to believe. They keep creating excuses not to believe. They insist they are the good people, who would believe if their requirements were fulfilled, but they insincere.
Has not the news reached you of those who disbelieved aforetime? And so they tasted the evil result of their disbelief, and theirs will be a painful torment. (64:5)
That was because there came to them their Messengers with clear proofs (signs), but they said: «Shall mere men guide us?» So they disbelieved and turned away (from the truth). But Allah was not in need (of them). And Allah is Rich (Free of all needs), Worthy of all praise. (64:6)
The disbelievers pretend that they will never be resurrected (for the Account). Say (O Muhammad): Yes! By my Lord, you will certainly be resurrected, then you will be informed of (and recompensed for) what you did; and that is easy for Allah. (64:7)
Therefore, believe in Allah and His Messenger (Muhammad) and in the Light (this Quran) which We have sent down. And Allah is All- Aware of what you do. (64:8)
(And remember) the Day when He will gather you (all) on the Day of Gathering, – that will be the Day of mutual loss and gain (i.e. loss for the disbelievers as they will enter the Hell- fire and gain for the believers as they will enter Paradise). And whosoever believes in Allah and performs righteous good deeds, He will expiate from him his sins, and will admit him to Gardens under which rivers flow (Paradise) to dwell therein forever; that will be the great success. (64:9)
But those who disbelieved (in the Oneness of Allah – Islamic Monotheism) and denied Our Ayat (proofs, evidence, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) , they will be the dwellers of the Fire, to dwell therein forever. And worst indeed is that destination (64:10)
No calamity befalls, but by the Leave [ i.e. Decision and Qadar (Divine Preordainments)] of Allah, and whosoever believes in Allah, He guides his heart [ to the true Faith with certainty, i.e. what has befallen him was already written for him by Allah from the Qadar (Divine Preordainments)]. And Allah is the All- Knower of everything. (64:11)
How to be relieved from difficulties
In ayah 11, Allah Almighty mentions that no calamity befalls you but with the permission of Allah. Any calamity we have is by Allah’s permission. How do we deal with it?
The answer lies in the next ayah: Whomsoever believes in Allah, Allah guides his heart. The way out is through belief. If you believe in Allah, He will deliver you out of your difficult situation. This does not mean you don’t have to do what is required. If you are in difficult scenario, such as pain, you call the GP; if you have toothache you go to the dentist. You have to what is necessary but deep down in your heart, you trust Him (you have tawakkul in Him).
Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger (Muhammad); but if you turn away, then the duty of Our Messenger is only to convey (the Message) clearly. (64:12)
Allah! Lâ ilâha illâ Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He) . And in Allah (Alone) therefore, let the believers put their trust. (64:13)
O you who believe! Verily, among your wives and your children there are enemies for you (who may stop you from the obedience of Allah); therefore beware of them! But if you pardon (them) and overlook, and forgive (their faults), then verily Allah is Oft- Forgiving, Most Merciful. (64:14)
Your wealth and your children are only a trial, whereas Allah! With Him is a great reward (Paradise). (64:15)
Forgive rather than hold grudges
The translation here is not accurate. Azwaj refers to spouses, of either gender, not specifically wives. It is the plural of zawj (husband or wife) so it could be either. It says that some are your enemies.
The background is ayah is that some women believed in Islam and wanted to migrate by they were prevented from leaving Makkah and eventually when they reached Madina they saw that their friends had gained in knowledge and understanding and so they wanted to punish their husbands and children. However Allah Almighty says that it is better to forgive and that He is All Forgiving.
How do you utilise your wealth and raise your children?
Your children and wealth are the test for you. How do you earn, invest and spend it.? Don’t be overwhelmed by what you have been given by Allah. in them, utilise them and spend manage
So keep your duty to Allah and fear Him as much as you can; listen and obey, and spend in charity; that is better for yourselves. And whosoever is saved from his own covetousness, then they are the successful ones. (64:16)
Allah does not burden you more than you can bear
The reason behind the revelation of this ayah is that ‘fear Allah as He deserves to be feared’, they used to do qiyam al layl until their feet were swollen, and to lessen their burden. Allah said do not over burden yourself.
If you lend Allah a goodly loan (i.e. spend in Allah’s Cause), He will double it for you, and will forgive you. And Allah is Most Ready to appreciate and to reward, Most Forbearing, (64:17)
Help and support others
The goodly loan can be in different forms. Helping someone who is in difficulty, or suffering from a calamity physically or emotionally, or through charity. Allah will reward you for this.
All- Knower of the unseen and seen, the All- Mighty, the All- Wise. (64:18)
We ask Allah to keep our deeds purely for his sake and to keep us focused on the akhirah. Ameen.
Shaykh Haytham Tamim – Qiyam al Layl 7th February 2021.
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