73 - Al Muzzammil (The enshrouded one)

6 Tafsir(s) related to verse 73.1

Al-Jalalayn

O you enwrapped in your garment!, the Prophet (al-muzzammil is actually al-mutazammil, but the tā’ has been assimilated with the zāy), that is to say, the one who wraps himself up in his clothes when the Revelation [Gabriel] comes to him, in fear of him because of his awe-inspiring presence.

Al-Tustari

O you enfolded in your garment,He said:The enfolded one (al-Muzzammil) is the one who is enfolded in [his] garments and clasps them about him. In its inner meaning, it is one of the Prophet"s names (al-Muzzammil): "O you, the one who is able to compose himself (jāmiʿ nafsihi) when God Himself is with him (wa-nafsi"Llāhi ʿindahu)."His words, Exalted is He:

Ibn Al Kathir

The Command to stand at Night (in Prayer)

Allah commands His Messenger to cease being wrapped up, and this means to be covered during the night. He commands him to get up and stand in prayer to His Lord. This is as Allah says,

تَتَجَافَى جُنُوبُهُمْ عَنِ الْمَضَاجِعِ يَدْعُونَ رَبَّهُمْ خَوْفاً وَطَمَعاً وَمِمَّا رَزَقْنَـهُمْ يُنفِقُونَ

(Their sides forsake their beds, to invoke their Lord in fear and hope, and they spend out of what We have bestowed on them.) (32:16) Thus, the Prophet did as Allah ordered him, by standing for prayer at night. This was obligatory upon him alone, as Allah said,

وَمِنَ الَّيْلِ فَتَهَجَّدْ بِهِ نَافِلَةً لَّكَ عَسَى أَن يَبْعَثَكَ رَبُّكَ مَقَاماً مَّحْمُودًا

(And in some parts of the night offer the Salah with it (the Qur'an), as an additional prayer for you. It may be that your Lord will raise you to Maqam Mahmud.) (17:79) Here Allah explains how much prayer he should perform. Allah says,

يأَيُّهَا الْمُزَّمِّلُ - قُمِ الَّيْلَ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً

(O you wrapped up! Stand all night, except a little.) Ibn `Abbas, Ad-Dahhak and As-Suddi all said,

يأَيُّهَا الْمُزَّمِّلُ

(O you wrapped up!) "This means, O you who are asleep.'' Qatadah said, "The one who is wrapped up in his garments.'' Concerning Allah's statement,

نِّصْفَهُ

(Half of it) means, instead of the whole night.

أَوِ انقُصْ مِنْهُ قَلِيلاًأَوْ زِدْ عَلَيْهِ

(A little less than that, or a little more.) meaning, `We have commanded you to stand in prayer for half of the night, either a little more than it or a little less. There is no hardship on you concerning that (slight increase or decrease).

The Way of reciting the Qur'an

Concerning Allah's statement,

وَرَتِّلِ الْقُرْءَانَ تَرْتِيلاً

(And Rattil the Qur'an Tartil.) meaning, recite it slowly, for that will help in understanding the Qur'an and contemplating it. This is how the Prophet used to recite. `A'ishah said, "He (the Prophet) used to recite the chapter slowly, so much so that it would be longer than chapters that were actually longer than it.'' In Sahih Al-Bukhari, it is recorded from Anas that he was asked about the recitation of the Messenger of Allah, so he replied, "He used to elongate the letters.'' Then he (Anas) recited,

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـنِ الرَّحِيمِ

(In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.) (1:1) and he elongated "In the Name of Allah,'' and he elongated "The Most Gracious,'' and he elongated "The Most Merciful.'' Ibn Jurayj reported from Ibn Abi Mulaykah, who narrated from Umm Salamah that she was asked about the recitation of the Messenger of Allah, so she said, "He used to pause in his recitation, verse by verse.

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـنِ الرَّحِيمِ - الْحَمْدُ للَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَـلَمِينَ - الرَّحْمَـنِ الرَّحِيمِ - مَـلِكِ يَوْمِ الدِّينِ

(In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. All praise is Allah's, the Lord of all that exists. The Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. The Only Owner of the Day of Recompense.) (1:1-4) This was recorded by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi. We have already mentioned the Hadiths which prove the recommendation of slow rhythmic recitation and beautification of the voice while reciting at the beginning of this Tafsir. For example, the Hadith which states,

«زَيِّنُوا الْقُرْآنَ بِأَصْوَاتِكُم»

(Beautify the Qur'an with your voices.) and the Hadith,

«لَيْسَ مِنَّا مَنْ لَمْ يَتَغَنَّ بِالْقُرْآن»

(He is not of us who does not chant nicely with the recitation of the Qur'an.) and the Hadith,

«لَقَدْ أُوتِيَ هَذَا مِزْمَارًا مِنْ مَزَامِيرِ آلِ دَاوُد»

(Verily, he has been given this windpipe from the windpipes of the family of Dawud.) Referring to Abu Musa. Abu Musa replied, "If I knew that you had been listening to my recitation, I would have truly beautified it for you.'' It has been narrated from Ibn Mas`ud that he said, "Do not scatter the (recitation of) Qur'an out like the scattering of sand, and do not rush through it like the hasty recitation of poetry. Stop at its amazing parts and make your heart move with it. None of you should let his concern be to reach the end of the chapter.'' This has been recorded by Al-Baghawi. Al-Bukhari recorded from Abi Wa'il that he said, "A man came to Ibn Mas`ud and said, `I read the Mufassal chapters (from Qaf to An-Nas) last night in one unit of prayer.' Ibn Mas`ud said, `This is rushing like the haste of reciting poetry. the Most Merciful. The Only Owner of the Day of Recompense.) (1:1-4) This was recorded by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi. We have already mentioned the Hadiths which prove the recommendation of slow rhythmic recitation and beautification of the voice while reciting at the beginning of this Tafsir. For example, the Hadith which states,

«زَيِّنُوا الْقُرْآنَ بِأَصْوَاتِكُم»

(Beautify the Qur'an with your voices.) and the Hadith,

«لَيْسَ مِنَّا مَنْ لَمْ يَتَغَنَّ بِالْقُرْآن»

(He is not of us who does not chant nicely with the recitation of the Qur'an.) and the Hadith,

«لَقَدْ أُوتِيَ هَذَا مِزْمَارًا مِنْ مَزَامِيرِ آلِ دَاوُد»

(Verily, he has been given this windpipe from the windpipes of the family of Dawud.) Referring to Abu Musa. Abu Musa replied, "If I knew that you had been listening to my recitation, I would have truly beautified it for you.'' It has been narrated from Ibn Mas`ud that he said, "Do not scatter the (recitation of) Qur'an out like the scattering of sand, and do not rush through it like the hasty recitation of poetry. Stop at its amazing parts and make your heart move with it. None of you should let his concern be to reach the end of the chapter.'' This has been recorded by Al-Baghawi. Al-Bukhari recorded from Abi Wa'il that he said, "A man came to Ibn Mas`ud and said, `I read the Mufassal chapters (from Qaf to An-Nas) last night in one unit of prayer.' Ibn Mas`ud said, `This is rushing like the haste of reciting poetry.

The Magnificence of the Qur'an

Allah then said,

إِنَّا سَنُلْقِى عَلَيْكَ قَوْلاً ثَقِيلاً

(Verily, We shall send down to you a Word Thaqil.) Al-Hasan and Qatadah both said, "The actions with it.'' It has also been said that it means it will be heavy at the time of its revelation due to its magnificence. This is similar to what Zayd bin Thabit said. He said, "The Messenger of Allah received some revelation while his thigh was on top of my thigh, and my thigh was almost crushed due to it.'' Imam Ahmad recorded from `Abdullah bin `Amr that he said, "I asked the Prophet, `O Messenger of Allah! Do you feel anything when revelation comes (to you)' The Messenger of Allah replied,

«أَسْمَعُ صَلَاصِلَ ثُمَّ أَسْكُتُ عِنْدَ ذَلِكَ، فَمَا مِنْ مَرَّةٍ يُوحَى إِلَيَّ إِلَّا ظَنَنْتُ أَنَّ نَفْسِي تُقْبَض»

(I hear a ringing and then I remain quiet when that occurs. There has not been a single time that revelation has come to me except that I thought that my soul was about to be taken (death).)'' Ahmad was alone in narrating this. In the beginning of Sahih Al-Bukhari, it is recorded from `A'ishah that Al-Harith bin Hisham asked the Messenger of Allah, "How does the revelation come to you'' The Prophet replied,

«أَحْيَانًا يَأْتِي فِي مِثْلِ صَلْصَلَةِ الْجَرَسِ وَهُوَ أَشَدُّهُ عَلَيَّ، فَيُفْصَمُ عَنِّي وَقَدْ وَعَيْتُ عَنْهُ مَا قَالَ، وَأَحْيَانًا يَتَمَثَّلُ لِي الْمَلَكُ رَجُلًا فَيُكَلِّمُنِي فَأَعِي مَا يَقُول»

(Sometimes it comes to me like the ringing of a bell, and it is most severe upon me. Then this state passes away from me after I have grasped what is inspired. Sometimes the angel comes to me in the form of a man and talks to me and I grasp whatever he says.) `A'ishah added, "Verily, I saw him receiving revelation and I noticed the sweat dropping from his forehead on a very cold day as the revelation ended.'' This is the wording recorded by Al-Bukhari. Imam Ahmad recorded from `A'ishah that she said, "If the Messenger of Allah received any revelation while he was on his riding animal, it would begin moving its Jiran intensely.'' The Jiran is the bottom of the neck. Ibn Jarir chose the interpretation that it (the revelation) is heavy in both ways simultaneously. This is as `Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said, "Just as it is heavy in this world, it will also be heavy on the Day of Judgement in the Scales.''

The Virtue of standing at Night for Prayer

Allah says,

إِنَّ نَاشِئَةَ الَّيْلِ هِىَ أَشَدُّ وَطْأً وَأَقْوَمُ قِيلاً

(Verily, rising (Nashi'ah) at night is better for understanding and more suitable for speech (recitation).) `Umar, Ibn `Abbas and Ibn Zubayr, all said, "The entire night is Nashi'ah.'' Mujahid and others said the same. It is said "Nasha'a'' when a person stands at night to pray. In one narration from Mujahid he said, "(It is) after `Isha' (prayer).'' This was also said by Abu Mijlaz, Qatadah, Salim, Abu Hazim and Muhammad bin Al-Munkadir. The point is that Nashi'ah of the night refers to its hours and its times, every hour of it is called Nashi'ah, so it refers to the periods of time. The purpose of this is that standing at night (for prayer) is better for training the heart and the tongue, and more conducive to recitation. Thus, Allah says,

هِىَ أَشَدُّ وَطْأً وَأَقْوَمُ قِيلاً

(is better for understanding and more suitable for speech (recitation).) meaning, more comprehensive for the matter of performing the recitation and better for understanding it than in the recitation of the day. This is because the daytime is the time for people to disperse and move about, to raise voices and be lively. Al-Hafiz Abu Ya`la Al-Mawsili said, "Ibrahim bin Sa`id Al-Jawhari told us that Abu Usamah told us that Al-A`mash informed us that Anas bin Malik recited this Ayah as: (إِنَّ نَاشِئَةَ اللَّيْلِ هِيَ أَشَدُّ وَأَصْوَبُ قِيلًا) (`Verily, rising at night is better for understanding and more correct for the speech.') So a man said to him, `We recite it;

وَأَقْوَمُ قِيلاً

(more suitable for speech).' So Anas said to him, `Most correct (Aswab), most suitable (Aqwam), the best for preparation (Ahya') and similar words are all the same (in meaning).''' Thus, Allah continues saying,

إِنَّ لَكَ فِى النَّهَارِ سَبْحَاً طَوِيلاً

(Verily, for you in the day is lengthy Sabh.) Ibn `Abbas, `Ikrimah and "Ata' bin Abi Muslim, all said, "Leisure time and sleep.'' Abu Al-`Aliyah, Mujahid, Abu Malik, Ad-Dahhak, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ar-Rabi` bin Anas and Sufyan Ath-Thawri, all said, "A long amount of leisure time.'' Qatadah said, "Leisure, aspirations and activities.'' `Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said concerning the statement,

إِنَّ لَكَ فِى النَّهَارِ سَبْحَاً طَوِيلاً

(Verily, for you in the day is lengthy Sabh.) "This means for your needs. Therefore, leave the night open for your religious devotion. Allah said this when the (voluntary) night prayer was obligatory. Then, Allah blessed His servants, lightened the matter and removed its obligation.'' Then he recited,

قُمِ الَّيْلَ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً

(Stand (to pray) all night, except a little.) to the end of the Ayah, then he recited,

إِنَّ رَبَّكَ يَعْلَمُ أَنَّكَ تَقُومُ أَدْنَى مِن ثُلُثَىِ الَّيْلِ وَنِصْفَهُ

(Verily, your Lord knows that you do stand less than two- thirds of the night, or half of it.) (73:20) until he reached,

مَا تَيَسَّرَ مِنْهُ وَأَقِيمُواْ

(So recite of it what is easy.) (73:20) and Allah says,

وَمِنَ الَّيْلِ فَتَهَجَّدْ بِهِ نَافِلَةً لَّكَ عَسَى أَن يَبْعَثَكَ رَبُّكَ مَقَاماً مَّحْمُودًا

(And Tahajjud in some parts of the night (also offer the Salah with it), as an additional prayer for you. It may be that your Lord will raise you to Maqam Mahmud.) (17:79) In fact, this is as true as what he (`Abdur-Rahman) said, The proof for this view is what Imam Ahmad recorded in his Musnad, that Sa`id bin Hisham divorced his wife and then traveled to Al-Madinah in order to sell some property he had with her. He intended to use its money to buy an animal and a weapon and then go for Jihad against the Romans until he died. In the process of this he met a group of his people and they informed him that a group of six men from his people had intended that in the time of the Messenger of Allah, upon which he said,

«أَلَيْسَ لَكُمْ فِيَّ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ؟»

(Is there not for you all an excellent example in me) So he forbade them from that and made them testify that they would take their wives back. Then he (Sa`id) returned to us and informed us that he went to Ibn `Abbas and asked him about the Witr (prayer). Ibn `Abbas said, "Shall I not inform you of the person who is the most knowledgeable person on the earth about the Witr prayer of the Messenger of Allah '' He said, "Yes.'' Ibn `Abbas then said, "Go to `A'ishah and ask her, then return to me and inform me of what she tells you.'' He said, "Then I went to Hakim bin Aflah and requested him to go with me to her. But he said, `I do not want to be near her. Verily, I forbade her from saying anything concerning these two parties (the parties of `Ali and Mu`awiyah), but she refused and continued being involved with them (in their conflict).' So I adjured him by Allah, so he came with me and we entered upon her (in her house).'' So she said, "Is this the Hakim that I know'' He (Hakim) said, "Yes.'' Then she said, "Who is this that is with you'' He said, "Sa`id bin Hisham.'' She said, "Who is Hisham'' He said, "He is Ibn `Amir.'' She then asked Allah to have mercy upon him (`Amir). Then she said, "Yes, `Amir was a true man.'' Then I (Sa`id) said, "O Mother of the believers! Inform me about the character of the Messenger of Allah.'' She replied, "Have you not read the Qur'an'' I said, "Of course.'' Then she said, "Verily, the character of the Messenger of Allah was the Qur'an.'' I was about to stand and leave, but then I remembered to ask about the night prayer of the Messenger of Allah. I said, "O Mother of the believers! Inform me about the night prayer of the Messenger of Allah.'' She said, "Have you not read the Surah,

يأَيُّهَا الْمُزَّمِّلُ

(O you wrapped up.) I said, "Of course.'' She then said, "Verily, Allah made standing at night (for prayer) obligatory at the beginning of this Surah. So the Messenger of Allah and his Companions stood for an entire year during the night (in prayer) until their feet swelled. Allah held back the revelation of the end of this Surah for twelve months. Then, Allah revealed the lightening of this burden at the end of this Surah. Then, the standing for night prayer became voluntary after it used to be obligatory.'' I was about to leave when I remembered to ask her about the Witr prayer of the Messenger of Allah. So I said, "O Mother of the believers! Inform me about the Witr prayer of the Messenger of Allah.'' She said, "We used to prepare his Siwak (toothstick) for him and his ablution water, and Allah would awaken him whenever He wished to awaken him during the night. Then, he would clean his teeth with the Siwak and perform ablution. Then, he would pray eight (Rak`ahs) units of prayer and he would not sit during them except at the end of the eighth one. At this point he would sit and remember his Lord the Most High, and supplicate to Him. Afterwards he would stand without saying the greeting of peace (Taslim). He would then pray a ninth unit of prayer and then sit. He would remember Allah Alone and then supplicate to Him (during this sitting). Then, he would say the greetings of peace (to conclude the prayer) making it audible to us. Then, he would pray two more units of prayer after this salutation of peace, while he would be sitting. So these are eleven units of prayer, O my son. Then, when he became older and heavier, he would perform Witr prayer with seven units of prayer, and then he would pray two extra units of prayer after them while sitting after the salutation of peace. So these are nine units of prayer, O my son. Whenever the Messenger of Allah used to pray a particular prayer, he liked to remain consistent in its performance. If he would ever be preoccupied from performing the night prayer by oversleeping, pain or illness, he would pray twelve units of supererogatory prayer during the day. I do not know of Allah's Prophet ever reciting the entire Qur'an in one night before morning nor did he fast an entire month other than the month of Ramadan.'' So I went to Ibn `Abbas and told him what she had said. Ibn `Abbas then said, "She has spoken truthfully and if I had went to her house I would have remained until she spoke directly to me and I could see her lips moving.'' This is how Imam Ahmad recorded this narration in its entirety. Muslim also recorded similarly in his Sahih. Ibn Jarir recorded from Abu `Abdur-Rahman that he said, "When the Ayah

يأَيُّهَا الْمُزَّمِّلُ

(O you wrapped.) (73:1) was revealed, the people stood in night prayer for an entire year until their feet and shins swelled. This continued until Allah revealed,

مَا تَيَسَّرَ مِنْهُ وَأَقِيمُواْ

(So recite of it what is easy.) (73:20) Then the people relaxed.'' Al-Hasan Al-Basri and As-Suddi both said the same. `Ali bin Abi Talhah reported from Ibn `Abbas that he said concerning Allah's statement,

قُمِ الَّيْلَ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً - نِّصْفَهُ أَوِ انقُصْ مِنْهُ قَلِيلاً

(Stand (to pray) all night, except a little. Half of it or less than that, a little.) (73:2,3) "This became difficult on the believers. Then Allah lightened the matter for them and had mercy on them when He revealed after this,

أَن سَيَكُونُ مِنكُمْ مَّرْضَى وَءَاخَرُونَ يَضْرِبُونَ فِى الاٌّرْضِ يَبْتَغُونَ مِن فَضْلِ اللَّهِ وَءَاخَرُونَ

(He knows that there will be some among you sick, others traveling through the land, seeking of Allah's bounty.) until Allah says,

مَا تَيَسَّرَ مِنْهُ وَأَقِيمُواْ

(So, recite you of the Qur'an as much as may be easy for you.) (73:20) So Allah made the matter easy - and unto Him is due all praise - and he did not make matters difficult.'' Then Allah says,

وَاذْكُرِ اسْمَ رَبِّكَ وَتَبَتَّلْ إِلَيْهِ تَبْتِيلاً

(And remember the Name of your Lord and (Tabattal) devote yourself to Him with complete devotion.) meaning, make much remembrance (Dhikr) of Him, devote yourself to Him and spend your time worshipping Him when you have completed your occupations and what you need from the affairs of your worldly matters. This is as Allah says,

فَإِذَا فَرَغْتَ فَانصَبْ

(So when you have finished (your occupation), devote yourself for Allah's worship.) (94:7) meaning, when you have completed your tasks and occupations, then busy yourself in His obedience and His worship so that you will have free time for leisure. The meaning of this was said by Ibn Zayd, or close to its meaning. Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, Abu Salih, `Atiyah, Ad-Dahhak and As-Suddi, all said,

وَتَبَتَّلْ إِلَيْهِ تَبْتِيلاً

(And (Tabattal) devote yourself to Him with complete devotion.) "This means, make your worship solely for Him alone.'' Al-Hasan said, "Strive and devote yourself to Him.'' Ibn Jarir said, "A devout worshipper is called Mutabattil. An example of this is the reported Hadith that he (the Prophet ) forbade At-Tabattul, which means total devotion to worship while avoiding getting married.'' Allah said,

رَّبُّ الْمَشْرِقِ وَالْمَغْرِبِ لاَ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ فَاتَّخِذْهُ وَكِيلاً

(Lord of the east and the west; La ilaha illa Huwa. So take Him a trustee.) meaning, He is the Owner and Controller of affairs in the eastern regions and the western regions. He is the One except whom there is no deity worthy of worship. Just as you single Him out for worship, you should also single Him out for reliance. Therefore, take Him as a guardian and trustee. This is as Allah says in another Ayah,

فَاعْبُدْهُ وَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَيْهِ

(So worship Him and rely upon him.) (11:123) It is also similar to His statement,

إِيَّاكَ نَعْبُدُ وَإِيَّاكَ نَسْتَعِينُ

(You (Alone) we worship, and you (Alone) we ask for help.) (1:5) The Ayat with this meaning are numerous. They contain the command to make worship and acts of obedience exclusively for Allah, and to rely solely upon Him.

Kashf Al-Asrar

O enwrapped in thy robe, stand at night save for a little.

"O prophet made pure! O master most pure! O greatest messenger! O emulated by mortal man! O luminous moon in the tower of majesty! O most manifest pearl in the jewel box of messengerhood! O you whose name is the title of the book of majesty! O you whose decrees are the embroidery on the robe of messengerhood, whose speech is the capital of the religion, whose announcements are the ornament of the Shariah! O arranger of the collar of prophethood! O disseminator of the an- nouncement of messengerhood! O confirmer of the pillars of guidance! O unveiler of the secrets of friendship! O founder of the path of the Shariah! O raiser of the miʿrāj of the Haqiqah!

"Stand at night: Get up and do the night prayer. Be awake some of the night, interceding for the community; and sleep some of the night, giving ease to your soul. O master, if you sleep all night, your community will be neglected, and if you stay awake all night, you will suffer, but I do not want your suffering. When you stay awake I will forgive some of the disobedient because of your wakefulness so as to confirm the truth of intercession. While you sleep I will forgive the rest to realize mercy. O master, when you found the robe of My proximity, you found it in sleep. So also at night be in My service. Just as you found the robe at night, so also give thanks for that robe by serving at night."

O chevalier! The servant is shown no greater generosity than when he rises furtively from his warm bed on a dark night and enters into whispered prayer at God's threshold with weeping and pleading, lifting up the story of his own pain to Him. He says in the tongue of need before the Presence of Mystery, "O God, give me access so I may lift up the story of my pain to You. I weep before Your threshold and I am joyful in hope mixed with fear. O God, receive me so that I may turn myself over to You. Gaze at me once so that I may throw the two worlds into the ocean." My dear, be awake and aware at night, for night is the scented garden of the friends and the springtime of the recognizers. Night is the meadow of the lovers and the light of the truthful. Night is the joy of the yearners and the ease of the spirits of the obedient.

Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an

To address the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) with these words and then to command him to rise and keep standing in the Prayer at night, shows that at the tune he either lay asleep, or had wrapped himself up in a sheet in order to go to sleep. Here, to address him with "O you who sleeps covered up" instead of with "O Prophet, or O Messenger", is a fine way of address, which by itself gives the meaning: "Gone is the time when you used to enjoy peaceful sleep at will; now you lie under the burden of a great mission, whose demands and duties are different as well as onerous.

This can have two meanings:

(1) "Pass the night standing up in the Prayer and spend only a little of it in sleep"; and

(2)"there is no demand from you to pass the whole night in the Prayer, but have rest as well and spend a little part of the night in worship too."

But in view of the theme that follows the first meaning seems to be more relevant, and the same is supported by Ad-Dahr: 26, in which it has been said: "Prostrate yourself before Him in the night and glorify Him during the long hours of night."

This is an explanation of the duration of time commanded to be spent in worship. In it the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) was given the option to spend half of the night in the Prayer, or a little less than that, or a little more than that. But the style shows that half the night has been regarded as preferable, for the measure is the same, which may be decreased or increased, as the people may like and choose.

"Recite the Qur'an......": Do not recite it quickly and in haste, but slowly and distinctly: pause at every verse so that the mind understands the meaning and purport of Divine Revelation well and takes effect from it. if it contains the mention of Allah's Being and Attributes, it may awe-inspire the heart with His glory and majesty; if it expresses His mercy, the heart may be filled with feelings of gratitude to Him; if it mentions His wrath and His punishment, the heart may be overwhelmed by fear of Him; if it enjoins something or forbids something, one may understand what has been enjoined and what has been forbidden. In short, the recital does not only consist in uttering the words with the tongue, but it should involve thoughtful consideration of the meaning. When Hadrat Anas was asked about the Holy Prophet's method of reciting the Qur'an, he replied: The Holy Messenger stretched the words when reciting them. For example, when he recited Bismillah ir-Rahman it-Rahim he would stretch and prolong the sound of Allah, Rahman and Rahim (Bukhari). When Hadrat Umm Salamah was asked the same question, she replied that the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) recited every verse separately and distinctly and observed a pause at the end of every verse. For instance, he recited AI-hamdu-lillah-i Rabb-il'alamin, and paused, then recited ar-Rahman ir-Rahim, and paused, and then recited Malik-i yaum id-di'n. "(Musnad Ahmad, Abu Da'ud, Tirmidhi). In another tradition, Hadrat Umm Salamah has stated that the Holy Prophet recited each word distinctly and clearly. (Tirmidhi, Nasa'i). Hadrat Hudhaifah bin Yaman says: "Once I stood beside the Holy Prophet in the Night Prayer to see how he recited the Qur'an. I noticed that he glorified Allah where He should be glorified, invoked and supplicated Allah where He should be invoked and supplicated, and sought refuge of Allah where His refuge should be sought." (Muslim, Nasa'i). Hadrat Abu Dharr has stated that once during the Night Prayer when the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) came to the sentence: In to adhdhib-hmn... (If You punish them, then they are Your servants; and if You forgive them, then You are Almighty, All-Wise), he went on repeating it over and over again until it became dawn." (Musnad Ahmad, Bukhari).

That is, "You are being commanded to stand up in the Night Prayer because We are going to send down on you a weighty word, to bear the burden of which you must develop necessary power in yourself, and you can develop this power only by abandoning your ease and comfort of the night and by standing up in the Prayer and passing half the night or thereabout in the worship of your Lord. "The Qur'an has been called a weighty Word also for the reason that acting on its commands, demonstrating its teaching practically, extending its invitation in the face of the whole world, and bringing about a revolution in the entire system of belief and thought, morals and manners, civilization and social life, according to it, is indeed the weightiest task any human being ever has been charged with: It has been called a weighty Word also because bearing the burden of its revelation was a difficult and heavy duty. Hadrat Zaid bin Thabit says: "Once Revelation came down upon the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) in a state when he was resting his head upon my knee. I felt such a pressure of the weight on my knee that I thought it would break." Hadrat `A`ishah says: "I have seen the state of the Holy Prophet's receiving Revelation during intense cold, drops of perspiration started falling from his forehead." (Bukhari, Muslim, Malik, Tirmidhi, Nasa'i): In another tradition Hadrat `A`ishah has stated: "Whenever Revelation came down on the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) while he was riding on his she-camel, the she-camel would be forced to rest her chest on the ground and could not move until the Revelation was over." (Musnad Ahmad. Hakim, Ibn Jarir).

About the meaning of the word nashi'at al-lail, as used in the original, the commentators and lexicographers have expressed four different viewpoints:

(1) That nashi'at implies the person himself who rises at night;

(2) that it implies the hours of night;

(3) that it means the rising by night; and

(4) that it does not only apply to the rising in the night but rising after having had some sleep,

Hadrat `A`ishah and Mujahid have adopted this fourth viewpoint.

The word ashaddu wat'an as used in the Text is so vast in meaning that it cannot be explained in any one sentence. Its one meaning is: As the rising for worship by night and standing up for a long tithe in the Prayer is against human nature and the self of man seeks ease and comfort at that time. this act is an exercise which is most effective in controlling and disciplining the self. The person who governs himself by this method and gains dominance over his body and mind becomes able to use his power in the way of God, can work more efficiently and firmly to make the message of true Faith prevail in the world. The second meaning is: This is a very effective means of producing harmony and concord between the heart and the tongue, for during these hours of the night none else intervenes between the servant and his God, and whatever man utters with his tongue in this state, is the very voice of his heart. The third meaning is: This is a very efficacious means of bringing about conformity between the exterior and the interior of man,, for the person who in the solitude of the night would abandon his comfort and ease and arise for worship, would do so only out of sincerity: there can be no tinge of display and hypocrisy in this. The fourth meaning is: As this worship is harder on man than the worship of the daytime, it develops steadfastness in him: he is enabled to walk in the path of God more firmly and can face and endure the hardships of that way with greater constancy and determination.

Literally: "Makes the speech most upright and sound." But the purport is to say that at that time man can read the Qur'an with greater peace of mind, attention and understanding. lbn `Abbas has explained it thus: "That it is the most suitable time for man to ponder over the Qur'an well.” (Abu Da'ud).

After making mention of the occupation of the daytime, the exhortation to "remember the name of your Lord" by itself gives the meaning: "Never be heedless of the remembrance of your Lord even when you are deeply involved in your worldly occupations, and continue. to commemorate His name in one way or another at all times." (For explanation, see E.N. 63 of Surah AI-Ahzab).

" Wakil is a person in whom one has complete faith; so much so that one can entrust all one's affairs to him with full satisfaction of the heart. Thus, the verse means: "Do not feel distressed at the hardships that you are experiencing at the storm of opposition that has been provoked by your invitation to we Faith. Your Lord is He Who is the Owner of the East and the West, (i.e. of the whole universe) besides Whom no one else possesses the powers of Godhead. Entrust your affair to Him and be satisfied that He will fight your case, He will deal with your opponents, and He will look after all your interests well. "

"Depart from them" does not mean "Break off all ties with them and stop preaching to them", but it means; "Do not have intimate and friendly relations with them: disregard their foolish behavior and their nonsense." However, you should do so without showing any grief, anger or temper but gracefully like a noble person, who would disregard the abusive remarks of a mean person without minding them at all. This should not create the misunderstanding that the Holy Prophet's conduct was any different from it; therefore, Allah gave him this instruction. As a matter of fact, the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) was already following this very mode of conduct; this instruction was given in the Qur'an so as to tell the disbelievers: "It is not due to any weakness on the part of the Prophet that he is not responding to what you are saying against him, but Allah Himself has taught His Messenger to adopt this noble way of conduct in response to your foolish behavior. "

These words clearly contain the sense that the people who were actually denying the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) in Makkah and were inciting the common people to oppose and resist him by stirring up prejudices and by deceit and fraud were the well-to-do, prosperous and affluent people, for it was their interests, which were being hit by Islam's message of reform. The Qur'an tells us that this was not peculiar only to the Holy Prophet's case but in every age this very class of the people have been the main obstacle to every movement of reform. For example, see Al-A`raf; 60, 6b, 75, 88; Al-Mu'minun: 33; Saba; 34 35; Az-Zukhruf: 23.

Heavy fetters in Hell will not be put on the criminals' feet to stop them from escape but in order that they are not able to stand up and move; these will not be used to prevent their escape but as an instrument of their torment.

Since at that time the cohesive force to bind the parts of the mountains together will cease to work, first they will become like crumbling dunes of fine sand, then because of the earthquake which will be shaking the earth; the sand will scatter and shift and the whole earth will turn into an empty level plain. This last state has been described in Ta Ha: 105-107, thus: "They ask you: where will the mountains go on that Day? Say: My Lord will reduce them to fine dust and scatter it away. He will turn the earth into an empty level plain, wherein you will neither see any curve no crease."

Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs

And from his narration on the authority of Ibn 'Abbas that he said concerning Allah's saying (O thou wrapped up in your raiment!): '(O thou wrapped up in your raiment!) He is referring here to Muhammad (pbuh) who wrapped himself up in his raiment in order to pray.