104 - Al Humaza (The slanderer)

5 Tafsir(s) related to verse 104.1

Al-Jalalayn

Woe (waylun: an expression implying chastisement) to every backbiter, [who is a] slanderer, frequently engaging in backbiting and slander, that is to say, defamation — this was revealed regarding those who slandered the Prophet (s) and the believers, the likes of Umayya b. Khalaf, al-Walīd b. al-Mughīra and others —

Al-Tustari

Woe to every backbiter (humaza), [who is] a slanderer (lumaza),Humaza means a "backbiter" (mughtāb), [a word which is used] when a person maligns someone in their absence; lumaza means a person who defames (ṭāʿin), [that is] he defames someone when he sees them. [The verse] was revealed with reference to al-Wālid b. al-Mughīra.

Ibn Al Kathir

هَمَّازٍ مَّشَّآءِ بِنَمِيمٍ

(Hammaz, going about with slander) (68:11) Ibn `Abbas said, "Humazah Lumazah means one who reviles and disgraces (others).'' Mujahid said, "Al-Humazah is with the hand and the eye, and Al-Lumazah is with the tongue.'' Then Allah says,

الَّذِى جَمَعَ مَالاً وَعَدَّدَهُ

(Who has gathered wealth and counted it.) meaning, he gathers it piling some of it on top of the rest and he counts it up. This is similar to Allah's saying,

وَجَمَعَ فَأَوْعَى

(And collect (wealth) and hide it.) (70:18) This was said by As-Suddi and Ibn Jarir. Muhammad bin Ka`b said concerning Allah's statement,

جَمَعَ مَالاً وَعَدَّدَهُ

(gathered wealth and counted it.) "His wealth occupies his time in the day, going from this to that. Then when the night comes he sleeps like a rotting corpse.'' Then Allah says,

يَحْسَبُ أَنَّ مَالَهُ أَخْلَدَهُ

(He thinks that his wealth will make him last forever!) meaning, he thinks that gathering wealth will make him last forever in this abode (the worldly life).

كَلاَّ

(But no!) meaning, the matter is not as he claims, nor as he reckons. Then Allah says,

لَيُنبَذَنَّ فِى الْحُطَمَةِ

(Verily, he will be thrown into Al-Hutamah.) meaning, the person who gathered wealth and counted it, will be thrown into Al-Hutamah, which is one of the descriptive names of the Hellfire. This is because it crushes whoever is in it. Thus, Allah says,

وَمَآ أَدْرَاكَ مَا الْحُطَمَةُ - نَارُ اللَّهِ الْمُوقَدَةُ - الَّتِى تَطَّلِعُ عَلَى الاٌّفْئِدَةِ

(And what will make you know what Al-Hutamah is The fire of Allah, Al-Muqadah, which leaps up over the hearts.) Thabit Al-Bunani said, "It will burn them all the way to their hearts while they are still alive.'' Then he said, "Indeed the torment will reach them.'' Then he cried. Muhammad bin Ka`b said, "It (the Fire) will devour every part of his body until it reaches his heart and comes to the level of his throat, then it will return to his body.''

Concerning Allah's statement,

إِنَّهَا عَلَيْهِم مُّؤْصَدَةٌ

(Verily, it shall Mu'sadah upon them.) meaning, covering, just as was mentioned in the Tafsir of Surat Al-Balad (see 90:20). Then Allah says,

فِى عَمَدٍ مُّمَدَّدَةِ

(In pillars stretched forth. ) "Atiyah Al-`Awfi said, "Pillars of Iron.'' As-Suddi said, "Made of fire.'' Al-`Awfi reported from Ibn `Abbas, "He will make them enter pillars stretched forth, meaning there will be columns over them, and they will have chains on their necks, and the gates (of Hell) will be shut upon them.'' This is the end of the Tafsir of Surat Al-Humazah, and all praise and thanks are due to Allah.

Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an

The words used in the original are humazat il-lumazah. In Arabic hamz and lamz are so close in meaning that they are sometimes used as synonyms and sometimes with a little difference in the shade of meaning. But this difference is not definite and clear, for the meaning given to lamz by some Arabic speaking people themselves is given to lamz by other Arabic speaking peoples. On the contrary, the meaning given to harm by some people is given to hamz by others. Here, since both the words appear together and the words humazat il-lumazat have been used, they give the meaning that it has become a practice with the slanderer that he insults and holds others in contempt habitually. He raises his finger and winks at one man, finds fault with the lineage and person of another, taunts one in the face and backbites another; creates differences between friends and stirs up divisions between brothers; calls the people names and satirizes and defames them.

This second sentence after the first sentence by itself gives the meaning that he slanders others because of his pride of wealth. The words jama `a malan for collecting money suggest the abundance of wealth; then the words "counting it over and over again" depict the person's miserliness and his selfish hoarding of wealth.

Another meaning also can be: "He thinks that his wealth will make him immortal." That is, he is so engrossed in amassing wealth and counting it over and over again that he has forgotten death and he never bothers to consider that a time will come when he will have to depart from the world empty-handed, leaving everything behind.

The word in the original is la yrtnbadhanna. Nabdh in Arabic is used for throwing away a thing regarding it as worthless and mean. This by itself indicates that because of his wealth he thinks that he is a great man but on the Day Of Resurrection he will be hurled into Hell as a mean and contemptible object.

The word hutamah in the original is from hatm, which means to smash, crush and break into pieces. Hell has been described by this epithet because it will crush and break to pieces whatever is thrown into it because of its depth and its fire.

Nowhere else in the Qur'an has the fire of Hell been called the fire of Allah. Here, its ascription to Allah not only expresses its dreadfulness but it also shows how the wrath and contempt of Allah envelops those who become proud and arrogant with the worldly wealth. That is why Allah has described that fire as His own Fire into which they will be hurled.

Tattali'u is from ittala a, which means to climb and mount to the top, and also to be aware and informed. Afidah is plural of fuwad, which means the heart. But this word is not used for the organ which throbs in the breast, but for the seat of man's understanding and consciousness, his'feelings and desires, beliefs and thoughts, motives and intentions, Thus, one meaning of the rising of the fire to the hearts is that this. fire will reach the place which is the center of man's evil thoughts, false beliefs, impure desires and feelings, and wicked motives and intentions. The second meaning is that the Fire of Allah will not be blind like the tire of the world, which burns up the deserving and the non-deserving alike, but it will reach the heart of every culprit and discover the nature of his crime and then punish him according to his guilt.

That is, after the culprits have been thrown into it, Hell will be closed in upon them without leaving any slit or opening anywhere, in order to choke and suffocate them.

Fi amad-im-mumaddahah can have several meanings

(1) That the gates of Hell will be closed and tall columns will be erected on them;

(2) that the culprits will be tied to the tall columns;

(3) according to Ibn `Abbas, the flames of the fire shall be rising high like tall columns.

Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs

And from his narration on the authority of Ibn 'Abbas that he said about the interpretation of Allah's saying (Woe): '(Woe) severe punishment; and it is also said that this refers to a valley in Gehenna which is full of blood and puss; and it is also said that it refers to a well in the Fire (unto every slandering) who backbites people (traducer) and slanders and abuses them in their face. This verses was revealed about Akhnas Ibn Shurayq, or al-Walid Ibn al-Mughirah al-Makhzumi, who used to backbite the Prophet (pbuh) and also abuse him when in his presence.