The Quran

Commentaries for 33.11

Al Ahzab (The allies) - الأحزاب

33.11 Abbas - Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs
(There) at that point of fear (were the believers sorely tried) they were tested with a trial, (and shaken with a mighty shock) they were terribly exhausted and violently moved.
33.11 Asrar - Kashf Al-Asrar
There it was that the faithful were tried and shaken with an intense shaking.
MuṣṬafā reported that the Real undertakes to try His friends, just as you undertake to give food and drink to the ill. He said that in the highest paradises there are many degrees and domiciles that the servants can never reach by their own effort. The trials that the Exalted Lord assigns to them in this world convey them there.
A report has come that one day God's Messenger was gazing at the sky and laughing. He said that he was marveling at the lordly ruling and the divine decree concerning the faithful servants: If He commands blessings for them, they approve, and their good lies in that. If He commands trial, they approve, and their goods lies in that. In other words, they are patient in trial, they show gratitude for blessings, and in both they find the good.
It has been said that the Real divided Adam's progeny into one thousand kinds and let them look at the carpet of love. The desire for love rose up in all of them. Then He adorned this world and displayed it to them. When they saw its embellishments and splendors, they became drunk and entranced and remained with this world, except for one group, who stayed on love's carpet and stuck up their heads in their claim.
Then He divided this group into one thousand kinds and displayed the afterworld to them. When they saw the everlasting joy and bliss, the spreading shade and pouring water [56:30-31], the houris and the castles, they were entranced by it and stayed with it, except for one group who stayed on the carpet and sought the treasuries of recognizing Him.
The address came from the side of all-compellingness, the Exalted Threshold, “What are you seeking and why are you staying?”
They said, “Surely Thou knowest what we desire [11:79]. O Lord! You are the tongue of the tongueless, You are the knower of the secrets and the hidden. You Yourself know what we want.”
We have a reckoning other than that of the world's folk, we have an intoxicant other than wine.
The Exalted Lord took them to the top of the street of trial and showed them its deserts and perils.
That one kind became a thousand kinds, and they all turned away from the kiblah of trial, saying, “This is not our work. We do not have the capacity to carry this burden.” One group, however, did not turn away and, like the passionate, entered the street of trial. They did not think of trial or suffering. They said, “It is enough good fortune for us that we carry grief for You and that we suffer the sorrow of Your trial.”
Who am I to put on the cloak of loyalty to You,
or to have my eyes carry the burden of Your disloyalty?
But, if You issue the decree to my body, heart, and spirit, I will pull all three dancing into Your love. [DS 933]
Only those who recognize Him know the measure of pain for Him. If someone does not recognize Him, how will he know the measure?
The Pir of the Tariqah said, “O God, in pain I lament in fear that the pain will cease. Anyone who laments at the Friend's blows is unmanly in love for the Friend.”
O chevalier, if you have the capacity and gall for this work, then set out on the road! Drink the wine of trial and call the Friend to witness. Otherwise, enjoy your well-being and stop talking. No one ever sacrificed himself by faint-heartedness or raised his head high by leaning on water and clay. You can't be a pearl-diver when you fear for your life, and you can't raise your head high by leaning on water and clay. Either take no heed of life, or don't tangle with yourself.
33.11 Jalal - Al-Jalalayn
it was there that the believers were [sorely] tried, [there] they were tested, to distinguish the sincere individual from the one otherwise, and were shaken with a mighty shock, because of the severity of the terror.
33.11-13 Kathir - Ibn Al Kathir
How the Believers were tested, and the Position of the Hypocrites during the Battle of Al-Khandaq
Allah tells us what happened when the Confederates surrounded Al-Madinah and the Muslims were besieged and found themselves in straitened circumstances, with the Messenger of Allah in their midst. They were tried and tested, and were shaken with a mighty shaking. At this time hypocrisy emerged, and those in whose hearts was a disease spoke about what they really felt.
وَإِذْ يَقُولُ الْمُنَـفِقُونَ وَالَّذِينَ فِى قُلُوبِهِم مَّرَضٌ مَّا وَعَدَنَا اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ إِلاَّ غُرُوراً
(And when the hypocrites and those in whose hearts is a disease said: "Allah and His Messenger promised us nothing but delusion!'') Their hypocrisy became apparent, while the one in whose heart was doubt became weak, and he expressed the ideas that were in his heart because of the weakness of his faith and the difficulty of the situation. And other people said, as Allah tells us:
وَإِذْ قَالَت طَّآئِفَةٌ مِّنْهُمْ يأَهْلَ.يَثْرِبَ
(And when a party of them said: "O people of Yathrib...'') meaning Al-Madinah, as it was reported in the Sahih:
«أُرِيتُ فِي الْمَنَامِ دَارَ هِجْرَتِكُمْ، أَرْضٌ بَيْنَ حَرَّتَيْنِ، فَذَهَبَ وَهَلِي أَنَّهَا هَجَرُ فَإِذَا هِيَ يَثْرِب»
(I was shown in a dream the place to which you will migrate, a land between two lava fields. At first I thought it was Hajar, but it turned out to be Yathrib.) According to another narration:
«الْمَدِينَة»
(Al-Madinah. ) It was said that the origin of its name Yathrib was that a man settled there from (the people of) Al-`Amaliq whose name was Yathrib bin `Ubayd bin Mahlayil bin `Aws bin `Amlaq bin Lawudh bin Iram bin Sam bin Nuh. This was the view of As-Suhayli. He said: "And it was narrated from some of them that he said, `It is given eleven names in the Tawrah: Al-Madinah, Tabah, Tayyibah, Al-Miskinah, Al-Jabirah, Al-Muhibbah, Al-Mahbubah, Al-Qasimah, Al-Majburah, Al-`Adhra' and Al-Marhumah.''' r
لاَ مُقَامَ لَكُمْ
(There is no position for you.) means, `here, with the Prophet, you cannot stand guard,'
فَارْجِعُواْ
(Therefore go back) means, `to your houses and dwellings'.
وَيَسْتَأْذِنُ فَرِيقٌ مِّنْهُمُ النَّبِىَّ
(And a band of them ask for permission of the Prophet) Al-`Awfi reported that Ibn `Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him said, "These were Banu Harithah, who said, `We fear for our homes, that they may be robbed.''' This was also stated by others. Ibn Ishaq mentioned that the one who said this was `Aws bin Qayzi. They were using as an excuse to go back to their houses the claim that they were lying open and had nothing to protect them from the enemy, so they were afraid for their homes. But Allah said:
وَمَا هِىَ بِعَوْرَةٍ
(And they lay not open.) meaning, it is not as they claim.
إِن يُرِيدُونَ إِلاَّ فِرَاراً
(They but wished to flee.) means, they wanted to run away from the battlefield.
33.9-11 Maududi - Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an
In vv. 9-27 an appraisal has been made of the Battle of the Trench and the raid against the Bani Quraizah and were revealed at the end of the raid. One should keep the details of these events in view as given in the Introduction above.
The windstorm did not lash the enemy hordes immediately on their arrival but it occurred when the siege of Madinah had lasted about a month. "Armies which you could not see" implies the hidden powers which operate in the affairs of men under Allah's Command and of which men are wholly unaware. Man regards the occurrence of events and incidents as resulting from apparent causes and does not take into account the hidden forces at work, whereas in most cases these very hidden forces play the decisive role. As these forces function under the Command of Allah's angels, the "armies" may imply the angels as well though there is no indication here of sending the armies of the angels.
It may mean: "The enemies came upon you from every side, and also that those coming from Najd and Khaiber came from above and those coming from Makkah from below you."
"The believers" : All those who accepted the Holy Prophet as Allah's Messenger and became included among his followers, which comprised both the true believers and the hypocrites. In this paragraph Allah has made mention of the Muslim community as a whole. In the following three paragraphs the attitude of the hypocrites has been commented upon, and the next two deal with the Holy Prophet and the true believers.