سورة الأعراف   

Surah Name: Al-A'raf Meaning:The Heights

  • Revealed at Makkah
  • The foundation of Islam is on the transparent belief in the Unity of Allah-SWT . The relationship between man and Allah-SWT is such that the former must present his needs only before Him-SWT display his utter humility and insignificance. The theme of the preceding Surah is further expanded here, with emphasis on the importance of the Prophethood because no one can, on his own, comprehend Allah-SWT's Magnificence. He-SWT is beyond human senses. Allah-SWT's Cognition is a feeling induced into the human heart, and this honour is conferred upon the subtle hearts of His-SWT Prophets-AS through Revelations. They distribute these blessings amongst their followers, through a process known as Tazkiyah. In other words, the heart that receives this light is purified and capacitated to comprehend the Divine Book and the Wisdom. Thus the cognition of the Prophet-AS‘s paves the way to the Cognition of Allah-SWT ’. This Surah discusses the importance of Prophethood, supporting it with both logical and chronicle evidence, in the light of history of the preceding nations and their Prophets"-AS their conduct and the end results thereof. Towards the end is the discussion on the Unity of Allah-SWT ’. Also listed are some of His-SWT ’ Commands to facilitate His-SWT Cognition through obedience

  • Total Number of Rukū / Sections 24
  • Total Number of Āyāt / Parts 206
  • Sūrah / Chapter number 7
  • Rukū / Section 3 contains Āyāt / Parts 6
  • Siparah/ Volume 8 & 9


يَا بَنِي آدَمَ قَدْ أَنزَلْنَا عَلَيْكُمْ لِبَاسًا يُوَارِي سَوْءَاتِكُمْ وَرِيشًا وَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوَىَ ذَلِكَ خَيْرٌ ذَلِكَ مِنْ آيَاتِ اللّهِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَذَّكَّرُونَ

Ya banee adama qad anzalna AAalaykum libasan yuwaree sawatikum wareeshan walibasu a(l)ttaqwa thalika khayrun thalika min ayati Allahi laAAallahum yaththakkaroon(a)

O’ Children of Aadam-AS! Surely We-SWT have, sent down to you a garment covering your shame and as an adornment: and the garment of piety-that is the best. This is of the Signs of Allah-SWT, that perhaps they may be admonished.


يَا بَنِي آدَمَ لاَ يَفْتِنَنَّكُمُ الشَّيْطَانُ كَمَا أَخْرَجَ أَبَوَيْكُم مِّنَ الْجَنَّةِ يَنزِعُ عَنْهُمَا لِبَاسَهُمَا لِيُرِيَهُمَا سَوْءَاتِهِمَا إِنَّهُ يَرَاكُمْ هُوَ وَقَبِيلُهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لاَ تَرَوْنَهُمْ إِنَّا جَعَلْنَا الشَّيَاطِينَ أَوْلِيَاء لِلَّذِينَ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ

Ya banee adama la yaftinannakumu a(l)shshaytanu kama akhraja abawaykum mina aljannati yanziAAu AAanhuma libasahuma liyuriyahuma sawatihima innahu yarakum huwa waqabeeluhu min haythu la tarawnahum inna jaAAalnaa(l)shshayateena awliyaa lillatheena la yuminoon(a)

O’ Children of Aadam-AS! Let not Satan tempt you, as he has driven forth your parents from the Garden, divesting the twain of the garment, that he might discover to the twain their shame. Surely he beholds you, he and his tribe, in a way that you do not behold them. Certainly We-SWT have made the Satans patrons of those only who are not believers.


وَإِذَا فَعَلُواْ فَاحِشَةً قَالُواْ وَجَدْنَا عَلَيْهَا آبَاءنَا وَاللّهُ أَمَرَنَا بِهَا قُلْ إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يَأْمُرُ بِالْفَحْشَاء أَتَقُولُونَ عَلَى اللّهِ مَا لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ

Waitha faAAaloo fahishatan qaloo wajadna AAalayha abaana wa(A)llahu amaranabiha qul inna Allaha la yamuru bi(a)lfahshai ataqooloona AAala Allahi ma lataAAlamoon(a)

And when they commit an indecency they say: we found our fathers on it and Allaah-SWT has enjoined it on us. Say you-SW: certainly Allaah-SWT does not enjoin an indecency, you say falsely of Allaah-SWT what you do not know.


قُلْ أَمَرَ رَبِّي بِالْقِسْطِ وَأَقِيمُواْ وُجُوهَكُمْ عِندَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ وَادْعُوهُ مُخْلِصِينَ لَهُ الدِّينَ كَمَا بَدَأَكُمْ تَعُودُونَ

Qul amara rabbee bi(a)lqisti waaqeemoo wujoohakum AAinda kulli masjidin wa(o)dAAoohu mukhliseena lahu a(l)ddeena kama badaakum taAAoodoon(a)

Say you-SW  : my Rabb-SWT has enjoined equity, and that you shall set your faces aright at every place of worship, and call on Him-SWT making faith pure for Him-SWT ’. Even as He-SWT has begun you, you shall be brought back.


فَرِيقًا هَدَى وَفَرِيقًا حَقَّ عَلَيْهِمُ الضَّلاَلَةُ إِنَّهُمُ اتَّخَذُوا الشَّيَاطِينَ أَوْلِيَاء مِن دُونِ اللّهِ وَيَحْسَبُونَ أَنَّهُم مُّهْتَدُونَ

Fareeqan hada wafareeqan haqqa AAalayhimu a(l)ddalalatu innahumu ittakhathoo a(l)shshayateena awliyaa min dooni Allahi wayahsaboona annahum muhtadoon(a)

A party He-SWT has guided, and upon a party, straying has been justified. Assuredly they have taken the Satans as patrons instead of Allaah-SWT and they fancy that they are guided ones.


يَا بَنِي آدَمَ خُذُواْ زِينَتَكُمْ عِندَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ وكُلُواْ وَاشْرَبُواْ وَلاَ تُسْرِفُواْ إِنَّهُ لاَ يُحِبُّ الْمُسْرِفِينَ

Ya banee adama khuthoo zeenatakum AAinda kulli masjidin wakuloo wa(i)shraboo wala tusrifoo innahu la yuhibbu almusrifeen(a)

O’ Children of Aadam-AS! Take your adornment at every worship: and eat and drink, and be not extravagant; surely He-SWT does not approve of the extravagants.


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

Assign Sins To Yourself And Seek Divine Forgiveness

O’ Children of Aadam-AS " We-SWT have blessed you with raiment’s for your shame and as an adornment, i.e. We-SWT have created the resources and gave you the sense to make variety of costumes for the given purposes.


If humanity is not totally lost, driving human beings below the level of animals, both sexes do not tolerate an exposure of their shame. Allaah-SWT created the animals and birds with organic coverings but to the human beings He-SWT has provided resources to prepare garments, basically to cover their shame and at the same time to provide comfort, grace and protection against the weather. Thus they design clothes for all seasons and occasions.


The Function and Need for Garments

After Prophet Aadam-AS’s episode, his descendants are being warned against the Satanic alluring to expose themselves. The nude clubs and the nude cities of modern Western civilization are a symbol of the fact that they are the followers of Satan. A person failing to discern the need to cover his shame can never feel embarrassed in doing any immoral act. That is why the very first step after confessing Shahadah is to cover the privates; the obligatory worship comes later. Those who adopt nudity despite being of sound mind and body actually follow the Satan, while the ignorant folk take them as accomplished saints. Indeed only an insane person can opt for exposure, because it is a basic human instinct to cover the private parts. Also dress is not for pride and a demonstration of affluence which the Holy Prophet-SW forbids. He-SW rather counsels expression of gratitude to Allaah-SWT whenever a new dress is worn and declares the donation of old clothes to the poor an act of merit.


The real attire is the human behavior which should depict Allah-SWT's Greatness. Just wrapping up in colourful and expensive costumes is not attire but a sincere relationship based on His-SWT obedience and worship is indeed an attire which spares a person from disgrace of both worlds and ensures eternal dignity and success. Since nudity was made a part of worship and the infidels would go round the K'abah naked, Allaah-SWT recapitulates the ordeal of the parents of humanity, who tricked by Iblis to nakedness in Paradise were immediately packed to earth. Now let not Iblis strip you too and cause you to fall to the lowest ebbs of morality, because he and his progeny observe you whereas you cannot see them with the physical eye. This is a precarious situation. But Allaah-SWT ’ provided you the protection by restricting Iblis's friendship to the non believers. In other words, once blessed with faith it is easy to ward off the tricks of Iblis. Besides, every wrongdoing creates a niche in the heart for Iblis while virtue illuminates the heart and provides a protective shield against his whisperings.


Problem with Infidelity

When Iblis takes possession of hearts, the evil doers begin to justify their sins instead of feeling ashamed of themselves. This exactly is the dilemma of the modern civilization. The Holy Prophet-SW is told to inform the infidels that Allaah-SWT never enjoins evil and it is indeed an enormity to ascribe it to Him-SWT . The biggest problem with disbelief is that it deprives the infidels of Allah-SWT's Fear, and they start justifying their wrong doings merely to satisfy their ego in front of others. Allah-SWT's Commands are based on absolute justice. These are neither so strait as to bar use of good things nor so lenient as to allow un-necessary freedom of action. This equity in life is a sign of perfection. Unnecessary abstinence from food or conversation or a deliberate use of tattered garments can be a sign of pretence, but certainly not of piety. On the contrary, living beyond means to show, indulging in useless chat or eating out of proportion like animals are also acts of disapproval. Indeed balance in every sphere of life is a sine qua non of Islam.


Balanced Life a Sign of Excellence

Two basic aspects are highlighted here as example. Firstly, to turn in the right direction during Salat, meaning thereby that outward actions in worship must be in accordance with Sunnah. The expression “Inda Kulle Masjidin (at every place of worship) may mean every act of devotion in addition to Salat, so propriety is the keynote in every action. Secondly, the purity of the motive and inner feelings must be carefully guarded. Seek Allaah-SWT with utmost sincerity without ascribing any partners to Him-SWT , nor offer worship to invite applause from others, as it is hypocrisy. Ignoring anyone aspect renders the other futile; for instance, a person asserts that the outward is not important as his inner self is pure, simply tells a lie. For had he a purified soul he would never have indulged in disobedience. On the other hand, if a person though outwardly pious by virtue of his extensive worship yet inwardly seeks worldly benefits, he is at a great loss. The spiritual system of Islam called Tareeqat implies not only the outward adherence to Shari'ah in every action but also the inward sincerity and devotion. And it must never be forgotten that He-SWT Who created man from a state of non-existence, can most certainly resurrect him on the Day of Judgement from the dark alleys of death. No one should even harbour any doubt that once death overtakes him he will not return to life.


Both Aspects of Shari'ah Inseparable

Mankind is eternally divided into two groups. One consists of the people who follow the truth and are rightly guided. The other group comprises those who earn misguidance because of their wrong doings. They certainly wrong themselves by preferring the guidance of Iblis over Allaah-SWT ’s. Thus a continuous indulgence in sin makes their misdeeds fair seeming to them. Whereas they should have obeyed the Messengers-AS and believed in the Divine Book, yet unfortunately they took self-made traditions as their religion.


Dress for Salat

At the time of Quranic Revelation, immodesty and nudity was the order of the day. In Arabia it was considered a worship to go round the K'abah naked. Islam challenged this immorality fourteen centuries ago and eradicated it completely. Allaah-SWT Commands the believers to be properly clad while offering their Salat. It is otherwise obligatory to cover the shame, without which Salat cannot be valid. A mature lady's Salat is not acceptable without a shawl. Here Allaah-SWT Commands the believers to dress up properly for Salat. Just as one gets ready for going to the office or calling on someone, it is far more important to be presentable in the Court of Allaah-SWT . Therefore, Salat in all those outfits in which one may not feel like even visiting friends stands deprecated, although the obligation will be fulfilled even by only covering the shame. Wearing a vest and a loin cloth, or to put handkerchief on the head deprecates the Salat. Allaah-SWT Commands you to dress up properly for Salat and to eat and drink in order to maintain good health. If a person starves deliberately, weakening himself to an extent that he fails to perform his official as well as religious duties, he will indeed be a sinner of the highest order. The jurists deduce that this Ayah provides a proof that everything is basically permissible unless forbidden by Shari ah.


Taking Necessary Nutrition is Obligatory

Balance must not be lost even in dietary habits. Gluttony must be avoided nor should one trespass the limits of lawful food. And remember that to declare the lawful as forbidden or to eat the forbidden are both acts of disobedience to Allaah-SWT . A balanced diet promotes good health, both physical and mental, and is conducive not only to proper handling of mundane affairs but also to the fulfillment of religious obligations. This, in turn, generates a stronger faith in the heart and increases the capacity to do good. Many sayings of the Holy Prophet-SW quoted in Ruh al Ma’ani, Tafsir ibn-e Kathir and Tafsir-e-Mazhari may be referred to for detail.


Extravagance is not permissible in any aspect of life. To throw lavish parties, to buy clothes beyond ones means, and to display affluence on marriages by borrowed money, to waste water during ablution even while on the bank of a river, falls under extravagance. Its outward repercussions can be seen with the physical eye, though the real loss is that Allaah-SWT loves not the extravagant.