سورة مريم   

Surah Name: Maryam-AS Meaning: Mary

  • Revealed at Makkah
  • Total Number of Rukū / Sections 6
  • Total Number of Āyāt / Parts 98
  • Sūrah / Chapter number 19
  • Rukū / Section 1 contains Āyāt / Parts 15
  • Siparah/ Volume 16






ذِكْرُ رَحْمَةِ رَبِّكَ عَبْدَهُ زَكَرِيَّا

Thikru rahmati rabbika AAabdahu zakariyya

This is a mention of the Mercy of your-SW Rabb-SWT to His-SWT bondman Zakariyya-AS.


إِذْ نَادَى رَبَّهُ نِدَاء خَفِيًّا

Ith nada rabbahu nidaan khafiyya(n)

Recall when he-AS cried unto his-AS Rabb-SWT with a low tone.


قَالَ رَبِّ إِنِّي وَهَنَ الْعَظْمُ مِنِّي وَاشْتَعَلَ الرَّأْسُ شَيْبًا وَلَمْ أَكُن بِدُعَائِكَ رَبِّ شَقِيًّا

Qala rabbi innee wahana alAAathmu minnee wa(i)shtaAAala a(l)rrasu shayban walam akun biduAAaika rabbi shaqiyya(n)

He-AS said Rabb-SWT ! My bones have waxen feeble and the head is glistening with hoariness and I have not yet been in my prayer to You-SWT , my Rabb-SWT ! unblessed.


وَإِنِّي خِفْتُ الْمَوَالِيَ مِن وَرَائِي وَكَانَتِ امْرَأَتِي عَاقِرًا فَهَبْ لِي مِن لَّدُنكَ وَلِيًّا

Wainnee khiftu almawaliya min waraee wakanati imraatee AAaqiran fahab lee min ladunka waliyya(n)

And I fear my kindred after me, and my wife has been barren; so bestow on me from before You-SWT an heir.


يَرِثُنِي وَيَرِثُ مِنْ آلِ يَعْقُوبَ وَاجْعَلْهُ رَبِّ رَضِيًّا

Yarithunee wayarithu min ali yaAAqooba wa(i)jAAalhu rabbi radiyya(n)

Inheriting me and inheriting the Children of Ya‘qub-AS, and make him, Rabb-SWT , acceptable.


يَا زَكَرِيَّا إِنَّا نُبَشِّرُكَ بِغُلَامٍ اسْمُهُ يَحْيَى لَمْ نَجْعَل لَّهُ مِن قَبْلُ سَمِيًّا

Ya zakariyya inna nubashshiruka bighulamin ismuhu yahya lam najAAal lahu min qablu samiyya(n)

O Zakariyya-AS! We-SWT give you-AS the glad tidings of a boy, and his name shall be Yahya-AS, We-SWT have not so far made his-AS namesake in your-AS family.


قَالَ رَبِّ أَنَّى يَكُونُ لِي غُلَامٌ وَكَانَتِ امْرَأَتِي عَاقِرًا وَقَدْ بَلَغْتُ مِنَ الْكِبَرِ عِتِيًّا

Qala rabbi anna yakoonu lee ghulamun wakanati imraatee AAaqiran waqad balaghtu mina alkibari AAitiyya(n)

He-AS said Rabb-SWT ! In what way shall there be a boy for me? My wife has been barren, and I have reached the extreme age.


قَالَ كَذَلِكَ قَالَ رَبُّكَ هُوَ عَلَيَّ هَيِّنٌ وَقَدْ خَلَقْتُكَ مِن قَبْلُ وَلَمْ تَكُ شَيْئًا

Qala kathalika qala rabbuka huwa AAalayya hayyinun waqad khalaqtuka min qablu walam taku shaya(n)

Allah-SWT said even so! Your-AS Rabb-SWT says: it is to Me-SWT easy. Surely I have created you-AS before, when you-AS were not anything


قَالَ رَبِّ اجْعَل لِّي آيَةً قَالَ آيَتُكَ أَلَّا تُكَلِّمَ النَّاسَ ثَلَاثَ لَيَالٍ سَوِيًّا

Qala rabbi ijAAal lee ayatan qala ayatuka alla tukallima a(l)nnasa thalatha layalin sawiyya(n)

He-AS said Rabb-SWT ! Appoint me a Sign. Allah-SWT said: your-AS Sign is that you-AS shall not speak to mankind for three nights, while sound.


فَخَرَجَ عَلَى قَوْمِهِ مِنَ الْمِحْرَابِ فَأَوْحَى إِلَيْهِمْ أَن سَبِّحُوا بُكْرَةً وَعَشِيًّا

Fakharaja AAala qawmihi mina almihrabi faawha ilayhim an sabbihoo bukratan waAAashiyya(n)

Then he-AS came forth to his-AS people from the sanctuary and he-AS beckoned to them hallow your-AS Rabb-SWT morning and evening.


يَا يَحْيَى خُذِ الْكِتَابَ بِقُوَّةٍ وَآتَيْنَاهُ الْحُكْمَ صَبِيًّا

Ya yahya khuthi alkitaba biquwwatin waataynahu alhukma sabiyya(n)

O Yahya-AS! Hold fast the Book. And We-SWT granted him-AS wisdom, while yet a child.


وَحَنَانًا مِّن لَّدُنَّا وَزَكَاةً وَكَانَ تَقِيًّا

Wahananan min ladunna wazakatan wakana taqiyya(n)

And tenderness from Our-SWT Presence and purity, and he-AS was pious.


وَبَرًّا بِوَالِدَيْهِ وَلَمْ يَكُن جَبَّارًا عَصِيًّا

Wabarran biwalidayhi walam yakun jabbaran AAasiyya(n)

And dutiful to his-AS parents, and was not a highhanded rebel.


وَسَلَامٌ عَلَيْهِ يَوْمَ وُلِدَ وَيَوْمَ يَمُوتُ وَيَوْمَ يُبْعَثُ حَيًّا

Wasalamun AAalayhi yawma wulida wayawma yamootu wayawma yubAAathu hayya(n)

And peace be to him-AS on the day of his-AS birth and death, and on the day he-AS will be raised up.


In The Name of Allah-SWT the Most Gracious, The Most Merciful

Maryam is a Makki Surah and like Al-Kahf narrates many amazing events. Many of these were revealed in reply to the inquiries put forth by the polytheists of Makkah on the instigation of the Jewish scholars who had also told the polytheists that only a Prophet-AS could answer these correctly. So Allah-SWT revealed unto His-SWT beloved-SW these events and also additional ones, about which the polytheists had not even questioned, as they had no knowledge of these events to put forth a question.


Isolated Letters

Kaf Ha Ya 'Ain S'ad. As already discussed the recitation of these Isolated Letters earn the reader due merit and feelings. As for the meanings, it is a secret between Allaah-SWT and His-SWT Prophet-SW. This knowledge may be shared by some devotees because of their sincere adherence to the Holy Prophet-SW Sunnah to an extent He-SWT may permit.


Allah-SWT ’s Way Of Blessing

Here a mention of the munificent Providence of Allah-SWT is being made that He-SWT is not by any means bound by causes, but can bless anyone with anything whenever it pleases Him-SWT . However, there are etiquette and conditions to be observed by the seekers. Once these are followed, Allah-SWT’s Mercy reaches out to them in its own magnificent way.


Conditions And Etiquettes Of Invocation

The first condition for asking from Him-SWT is that the invoker must be His-SWT servant just as the Prophets-AS are the most perfect servants of Allah-SWT . The ungodly religions ascribed divinity to their religious leaders. Some took them as deities, others as incarnations of Allah-SWT ; yet others believed in the transmigration of divinity unto them, while some ascribed Divine Attributes to them. But the very foundation of Islam is laid on the fact that a Prophet-AS, who invites people to Allah-SWT , is His-SWT devoted, and most dedicated servant. So the basic qualification for every invoker is that he must acknowledge Allah-SWT as his Master and himself as Allah-SWT’s humble and devoted servant. As for the etiquettes of invocation, see the way it was made by Prophet Zakariyya-AS. First of all one must ask Allah-SWT secretly from the core of his heart. The matter should be between him and Him-SWT and the invocation must not be a pretense.



Hadhrat S'ad ibn-e-Waqas-RAU quotes the Holy Prophet-SW as having said that the best Zikr is Zikr-e-Khafi (secret remembrance) and the best Rizq (provision) is the one that suffices.


Secondly, the supplicator must display before Allah-SWT his total helplessness. Thirdly, he must have complete trust in His-SWT Benevolence. Just as Prophet Zakariyya-AS invoked Allah-SWT in private: ‘O’ Rabb-SWT ! My bones have grown old. He-AS expresses beautifully that he-AS has grown so old that not only his-AS muscles are weakened but also the bones. He-AS added that the flame of old age shot out of his-AS head, denoting the greying of hair. The weakening of hearing, sight and muscles all announce the onset of old age, just as a flame announces the presence of fire. Praise be to Allah-SWT ! How lovingly the Prophet-AS expresses himself before his-AS Rabb-SWT ! He-AS further admitted that His-SWT Munificence had never turned down any of his-AS requests before besides, the basic motive behind the invocation, he-AS said, was Din, though it would bring forth worldly benefit too in the form of progeny. He-AS said that he-AS was afraid that his-AS relatives would not only be unable to serve the cause of Din, but would also become an obstacle to  it.


The Aulia' And Their Relatives

It is a strange fact that very few relatives of the Prophets-AS actually benefited from them, while majority remained deprived. Similarly relatives of the Aulia' benefited the least and most of them opposed them. The basic reason is that to benefit from a Prophet-AS or a Shaikh, reverence, respect and obedience are the basic requirements. But often relatives lack these and instead of taking the Prophet-AS as Allah-SWT’s Messenger-AS take him-AS simply as a brother, a nephew or just another member of the family. Same is true of the relatives of the Aulia' which deprives them of the Barakah. And this is what Prophet Zakariyya-AS expresses here that he-AS was apprehensive of his-AS relatives while his-AS worst fear was that his-AS wife was barren who could not bear a child. ‘Nevertheless O Provider-SWT ! You-SWT are the Omnipotent, so bless me with an heir, who would prove worthy of inheriting the of the house of Ya'qub-AS and would be Your-SWT chosen and beloved servant’, he-AS pleaded.


The Prophetic Legacy

Majority of the scholars agree that the legacy of the Prophets-AS is indeed their knowledge and teachings and not worldly belongings. It has been recorded in Authentic Hadith and also in the Shi’ite Book ‘Kafi Kaleeni' that undoubtedly the religious scholars are the heirs to the Prophets-AS, because the latter do not leave behind gold or silver, but their knowledge is their legacy. Whoever acquires this indeed acquires great wealth. The worldly possessions left behind by the Prophets-AS are categorised as alms. The Holy Prophet-SW weapons, armours and horses etc were not distributed amongst his-SW heirs as legacy, but were given away to his-SW devotees only for Barakah.


Prophet Zakariyya-AS’s invocation also does not refer to worldly inheritance for he-AS asserts ‘Who shall inherit of me and inherit of the house of Ya'qub.” This points to inheriting Prophetic knowledge, as the worldly inheritance of Prophet Ya'qub-AS was in any case not an area of concern for Prophet Zakariyya-AS. It was to go to his-AS near ones and not to Prophet Zakariyya-AS’s progeny. Besides, Prophet Zakariyya-AS’s fear that his-AS kins were not competent to be his-AS heirs applies to the Prophetic knowledge and Din because he-AS had no worldly wealth or possessions to leave behind. His-AS prayer was accepted. Allah-SWT gave him-AS the glad tidings of a son, whom he-AS name Yahya-AS, indeed a unique name never given to anyone before him-AS.


Name Must Be Beautiful And Unique

So it is desirable that name should be beautiful and unique and should also have some good meaning. Islam emphasises that Muslims’ names be meaningful. On the contrary, see the non Muslim world and its absurd names; the President of United States of America is Mr. Bush while his vice President is Mr. Quayl, which means a shrub and a bird respectively. The effect of names on personalities is a natural phenomenon.


Prophet Zakariyya-AS said: “O’ Allah-SWT , I am overpowered by old age and my wife is sterile, so how are we going to have a son in the absence of apparent signs. Shall I become young or will I remarry?” Allah-SWT said: “I am not bound by means. My Omnipotence can be seen in the creation of every individual, brought to life from non existence. Similarly I am the One Who-SWT creates the means.” So Prophet Zakariyya-AS requested for a sign and he-AS was told that once his-AS wife conceives he-AS will not be able to converse with any one for three days. He-AS will only be able to silently remember Allah-SWT . So when this condition developed, Prophet Zakariyya-AS came out of his-AS chamber and told his-AS nation, through gestures, to remember Allah-SWT constantly.


How To Display Happiness Over A Blessing?

It is natural to feel happy over a blessing, and as it is, children are indeed a great blessing. So the best way of expression is to remember Allah-SWT a lot, to hold gatherings to expound the life of the Holy Prophet-SW and Allah-SWT’s Din.


Prophet Zakariyya-AS was finally blessed with a son who was named Yahya-AS. When he-AS grew up he-AS was commanded to hold fast to the Book, that is, the Torah, and to strive hard in its practice. Moreover Prophet Yahya-AS was blessed with an understanding of the Din when he-AS was only a teenager. Allah-SWT endowed His-SWT Love and instilled in him-AS a quest to seek Him-SWT . He-AS was clean and devoted, as well as very gracious towards his-AS parents. He-AS was a gentle and kind hearted person who was equally affectionate towards everyone in general and was never harsh and arrogant. Allah-SWT loves him-AS so much that He-SWT sends peace unto him-AS, from the day that he-AS was born to the day he-AS would leave this world, and again when he-AS will be raised on the Day of Judgment.