Abbas - Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs
And on his authority from Ibn 'Abbas, regarding Allah's saying (Praise be to Allah) he said: '(Praise be to Allah) Allah says: gratitude and godhood are Allah's, (Who hath created the heavens) in two days: Sunday and Monday (and the earth) in two days: Tuesday and Wednesday, (and has appointed darkness and light) He created faith and disbelief or night and day. (Yet those who disbelieve) the unbelievers of Mecca (ascribe rivals) idols (unto their Lord).
Praise belongs to God who created the heavens and the earth and made the darknesses and the light.
He begins by lauding Himself, thereby praising Himself with His own beginningless laudation and reporting of His own self-sufficient brilliance and unitary elevation.
This is praise of the tremendous Lord, the wise Enactor. He is subsistent through His own subsistence, transcendent through His own attributes, magnificent through His own magnificence. His elevation is everlasting, His brilliance self-standing, His existence unitary, His being selfsufficient, His face majestic, His power perfect-Glory be to Him! And God is the One, the AllSubjugating [39:4], the exalted, the all-compeller, the great, the transcendent.
One of the great ones of the religion and leaders of the Tariqah said, “Who is worthy of praise other than He whose power created the heavens and the earth and made the darknesses and the light?” Who is fitting and who is worthy to be praised for purity and named for greatness other than He who created heaven and earth, created day and night, set up heaven like a roof, adorned earth like a cradle, readied the day for your livelihood, and made the night your time of rest?
It has also been said that heaven is an allusion to the heaven of recognition, which is the hearts of the recognizers. Earth is an allusion to the earth of service, which is the souls of the worshipers. He decorated heaven with the form of the stars, adorned it with sun and moon, and made it the gazing place of the earth-dwellers. In the same way, He adorned the heaven of recognition with the sun of knowledge, the moon of tawḤīd, and the stars of thoughts, and then He made it the gazingplace of the heaven-dwellers. Whenever the satans aim to listen stealthily, they are subjugated from the heaven of exaltedness by the stoning of stars. This is why the Exalted Lord said, “We have made them stonings for the satans” [67:5]. In the same way, whenever Satan aims to instill disquiet, a lightning flashes in the heart of the faithful servant from the heaven of recognition and burns Satan. This is why He says, “Surely the godwary, when a visitation from Satan touches them, remember, and then see clearly” [7:201].
On the expanse of the earth there are seven seas in which are benefits and livelihood for creatures.
In the same way, in the earth of service there are seven seas in which are the felicity and salvation of the servant. Abū Ṭālib Makkī, author of Nourishment of the Hearts, alluded to all of them by saying that the well-trodden paths of the wayfarers are seven seas: the intoxication of ecstasy, the lightning of unveiling, the bewilderment of witnessing, the light of proximity, the
friendship of finding, the splendor of togetherness, and the reality of solitariness. He said that these seven seas have been placed at the top of the street of tawḤīd. God placed the seven depths of hell in the road of paradise for the sake of the mimickers, and until the mimickers and the common people pass them by they will not reach paradise. In the same way, so long as the wayfarers on the road of tawḤīd have not passed over these seven seas, they will not reach the reality of tawḤīd. And made the darknesses and the light. Wherever there is ignorance, all is darkness, and wherever there is knowledge, all is light. Wherever there are both knowledge and deeds, there is light upon light [24:35]. As long as the servant governs over his own work, he is in the darkness of ignorance and the wrap of heedlessness. As long as he delegates it, he is in the brightness of recognition and the light of guidance. Among the traditions has come the saying, “O child of Adam! You have two great tasks ahead of you. One is putting the commands and prohibitions to work, and this I have placed upon you. Cling to it! The other is governing over your best interests, and that I have accepted for Myself and lifted from you. Do not busy your heart with it. I govern My
servants through My knowledge-surely of My servants, I am aware, seeing [35:31].”
Praise, which means to describe in beautiful terms, be, [ever] established, to God: is this meant to be informative, so that one believes in it? Or, is it meant as a eulogy, or both? These are three possibilities, the most likely of which is the last, as the Shaykh [Jalāl al-Dīn al-Mahallī] states in [his commentary on] sūrat al-Kahf [Q. 18:1]; Who created the heavens and the earth — He singles out these two for mention because for the observer they constitute the most awesome [visible] creation; and He appointed, He created, darknesses and light, that is, every darkness (zulma) and every light: the use of the plural only in the case of the former is because it [darkness] has many causes; and this is one of the proofs of His Oneness; then those who disbelieve, despite the existence of this proof, ascribe equals to their Lord, they worship others equally.
Praise be to God Who created the heavens and the earth: the manifestation of perfections and the attributes of the Beauty and the Majesty in the loci of the differentiations of existents in their entirety - which is the universal perfection and the nondelimited praise - is specific to the All-comprehensive Divine Essence that combines all of Its attributes and names, in view of the origins, [the Essence] which brought into existence the heavens of the world of spirits and the earth of the world of body, and originated in the world of the body the darknesses of its [various] levels, which [levels] are veils of darkness [that veil] from His Essence, and [originated] in the world of the spirits the light of knowledge and perception; then, that is, after the manifestation of these signs [of His], those who disbelieve, those who are veiled absolutely, ascribe as equals to their Lord, other than Him, affirming [the existence of] an existent that is equal to Him with respect to existence.
All Praise is Due to Allah for His Glorious Ability and Great Power
Allah praises and glorifies His Most Honorable Self for creating the heavens and earth, as a dwelling for His servants, and for making the darkness and the light to benefit them in the night and the day. In this Ayah, Allah describes darkness in the plural, Zulumat where Zulmah is singular for darkness, while describing the light in the singular, An-Nur, because An-Nur is more honored. In other Ayat, Allah said,
ظِلَـلُهُ عَنِ الْيَمِينِ
(To the right and to the lefts.) 16:48 Near the end of this Surah (chapter 6), Allah also said;
(And verily, this is my straight path, so follow it, and follow no (other) ways, for they will separate you away from His way.) 6:153 Allah said next,
ثْمَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ بِرَبِّهِمْ يَعْدِلُونَ
(Yet those who disbelieve hold others as equal with their Lord.) meaning, in spite of all this, some of Allah's servants disbelieve in Him and hold others as partners and rivals with Him. Some of Allah's servants claimed a wife and a son for Allah, hallowed be He far above what they attribute to Him. Allah's statement,
هُوَ الَّذِى خَلَقَكُمْ مِّن طِينٍ
(He it is Who has created you from clay,) refers to the father of mankind, Adam, from whom mankind originated, multiplied in numbers and spread about, east and west. Allah said,
ثُمَّ قَضَى أَجَلاً وَأَجَلٌ مُّسمًّى عِندَهُ
(Then has decreed a stated term. And there is with Him another determined term...) His saying;
ثُمَّ قَضَى أَجَلاً
(Then has decreed a stated term,) refers to death, while,
وَأَجَلٌ مُّسمًّى عِندَهُ
(And there is with Him another determined term...) refers to the Hereafter, according to Sa`id bin Jubayr who reported this from Ibn `Abbas. Similar statements were narrated from Mujahid, `Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, Zayd bin Aslam, `Atiyyah, As-Suddi, Muqatil bin Hayyan and others. Ibn `Abbas and Mujahid said that,
ثُمَّ قَضَى أَجَلاً
(And then has decreed a stated term,) is the term of this earthly life, while,
وَأَجَلٌ مُّسمًّى عِندَهُ
(And there is with Him another determined term) refers to man's extent of life until he dies as mentioned in Allah's statement;
(It is He, Who takes your souls by night (when you are asleep), and has knowledge of all that you have done by day, then He raises (wakes) you up again that a term appointed (life) be fulfilled.) 6:60 The meaning of Allah's statement,
(With Him) is that none but Him knows when it will occur. Allah said in other Ayat,
(And He is Allah in the heavens and the earth, He knows what you conceal and what you reveal, and He knows what you earn.) Meaning, it is He Who is called Allah, throughout the heavens and the earth, that is, it is He who is worshipped, singled out, whose divinity is believed in by the inhabitants of the heavens and the earth. They call Him Allah, and they supplicate to Him in fear and hope, except those who disbelieve among the Jinns and mankind. In another Ayah, Allah said;
(It is He Who is God in the heavens and the earth.)43:84 meaning, He is the God of those in heaven and those on earth, and He knows all affairs, public and secret.
وَيَعْلَمُ مَا تَكْسِبُونَ
(And He knows what you earn) all the good and bad deeds that you perform.
Maududi - Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an
It should be noted that the addressees were the mushrik Arabs, who acknowledged that the Creator of the earth and heavens and of the sun and the moon is Allah, who brought about the day and night. None of them believed that these were the works of Lat or Hubal or `Uzza or of any other god or goddess. Therefore Allah admonished them, saying (so to speak), "O foolish people, when you yourselves admit that the Creator of the heavens and earth and of the night and day, is Allah, why do you, then, make others your gods, and prostrate before them, make offerings to them, present your needs before them and invoke them for help`" (Refer to E.N.2 of Al-Fatihah and E.N. 163, Al-Baqarah).
It may be noted that Zulumat (plural of Zulmat) has been used in contrast to nur (light, singular form). It is because 'darkness is merely the absence of light and may be of many kinds.
Allah says that He has created man from "earth" because each and every particle of the human body comes from the earth and from nowhere else.
"The other settled term" is the "Day of Resurrection", when all human beings will be brought back to life and presented before Allah for rendering the account of their life on the earth.