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 9 contains Āyāt / Parts 8
  • Siparah/ Volume 8 & 9


وَإِلَى عَادٍ أَخَاهُمْ هُوداً قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُواْ اللّهَ مَا لَكُم مِّنْ إِلَـهٍ غَيْرُهُ أَفَلاَ تَتَّقُونَ

Waila AAadin akhahum hoodan qala ya qawmi oAAbudoo Allaha ma lakum min ilahin ghayruhu afala tattaqoon(a)

And to ‘Ad We-SWT sent their brother, Hud-AS He  said: O’ my people! Worship Allah-SWT, no god you have other than He-SWT . Do you not fear?


قَالَ الْمَلأُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ مِن قَوْمِهِ إِنَّا لَنَرَاكَ فِي سَفَاهَةٍ وِإِنَّا لَنَظُنُّكَ مِنَ الْكَاذِبِينَ

Qala almalao allatheena kafaroo min qawmihi inna lanaraka fee safahatin wainnalanathunnuka mina alkathibeen(a)

The chiefs of those who disbelieved among his people said: in truth, we see you in folly and in truth we deem you to be of the liars.


قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ لَيْسَ بِي سَفَاهَةٌ وَلَكِنِّي رَسُولٌ مِّن رَّبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ

Qala ya qawmi laysa bee safahatun walakinnee rasoolun min rabbi alAAalameen(a)

Hud-AS said: O’ my people! Not with me is folly, but I am a Messenger-AS from the Rabb-SWT of the worlds.


أُبَلِّغُكُمْ رِسَالاتِ رَبِّي وَأَنَاْ لَكُمْ نَاصِحٌ أَمِينٌ

Oballighukum risalati rabbee waana lakum nasihun amen(un)

I preach to you the Messages from my Rabb-SWT and I am to you a counsellor faithful.


أَوَعَجِبْتُمْ أَن جَاءكُمْ ذِكْرٌ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ عَلَى رَجُلٍ مِّنكُمْ لِيُنذِرَكُمْ وَاذكُرُواْ إِذْ جَعَلَكُمْ خُلَفَاء مِن بَعْدِ قَوْمِ نُوحٍ وَزَادَكُمْ فِي الْخَلْقِ بَسْطَةً فَاذْكُرُواْ آلاء اللّهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ

AwaAAajibtum an jaakum thikrun min rabbikum AAala rajulin minkum liyunthirakum wa(o)thkuroo ith jaAAalakum khulafaa min baAAdi qawmi noohin wazadakum fee alkhalqi bastatan fa(o)thkuroo alaa Allahi laAAallakum tuflihoon(a)

Do you marvel that an admonition from your Rabb-SWT should come to you upon a man from amongst you so that he may warn you? Remember the time when He-SWT made you successors after the people of Nuh-AS and increased you amply in stature. Remember the bounties of Allaah-SWT that perchance you may fare well.


قَالُواْ أَجِئْتَنَا لِنَعْبُدَ اللّهَ وَحْدَهُ وَنَذَرَ مَا كَانَ يَعْبُدُ آبَاؤُنَا فَأْتِنَا بِمَا تَعِدُنَا إِن كُنتَ مِنَ الصَّادِقِينَ

Qaloo ajitana linaAAbuda Allaha wahdahu wanathara ma kana yaAAbuduabaona fatina bima taAAiduna in kunta mina a(l)ssadiqeen(a)

They said: have you come to us that we should worship Allaah-SWT Alone and leave what our fathers were used to worship? Bring you then upon us that with which you have threatened us if you are of the truthful.


قَالَ قَدْ وَقَعَ عَلَيْكُم مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ رِجْسٌ وَغَضَبٌ أَتُجَادِلُونَنِي فِي أَسْمَاء سَمَّيْتُمُوهَا أَنتُمْ وَآبَآؤكُم مَّا نَزَّلَ اللّهُ بِهَا مِن سُلْطَانٍ فَانتَظِرُواْ إِنِّي مَعَكُم مِّنَ الْمُنتَظِرِينَ

Qala qad waqaAAa AAalaykum min rabbikum rijsun waghadabun atujadiloonanee fee asmain sammaytumooha antum waabaokum ma nazzala Allahu biha min sultanin fa(i)ntathiroo innee maAAakum mina almuntathireen(a)

Hud-AS said: surely there have befallen you wrath and indignation from your Rabb-SWT . Do you dispute with me over the names you have named, you and your fathers, for which Allaah-SWT has sent down no warranty? Wait then; I also will be of those who wait.


فَأَنجَيْنَاهُ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ بِرَحْمَةٍ مِّنَّا وَقَطَعْنَا دَابِرَ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُواْ بِآيَاتِنَا وَمَا كَانُواْ مُؤْمِنِينَ

Faanjaynahu wa(a)llatheena maAAahu birahmatin minna waqataAAna dabira allatheena kaththaboo biayatina wama kanoo mumineen(a)

Then We-SWT delivered him and those with him by a Mercy from Us-SWT , and We-SWT utterly cut off those who belied Our-SWT Signs, and would not be believers.


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

The Unity of Allah-SWT

As time rolled on the inhabitants of earth nourished and multiplied. In the fifth generation of Prophet Nuh-AS was born a person named Ad. who was a descendant of Prophet Nuh-AS ‘s son Sam. 'Ad was a man of such prominence that the entire nation became known as Qaum-e-' Ad (People of Ad).


The descendants of Ad's brother became known as the Children of Thamud ,and also as 'Ad Thani (Ad the Second). According to the historians, Irum was the grandfather of Ad. That is why these people have also been referred to as Ad-e-lrum in history. They were well built, tall, strong and affluent, blessed with fertile lands yielding golden crops. Their orchards were laden with fruits. In short, they had every possible provision, in abundance, and this led them into heedlessness of Allaah-SWT . Intoxicated with wealth and power they indulged in polytheism and defiance. This tragic level of their spiritual ailment demanded a healing through Divine Providence. Therefore, Allaah-SWT raised amongst them Prophet Hud-AS, a descendant of Sam. Prophethood is an honour conferred only upon mankind, and no other creation has ever been blessed with. This is because humans could have only benefited from their own species. But here the favour was doubled as Prophet Hud"AS was also from the same community and lineage. He blatantly told his people to worship Allah-SWT, as He-SWT Alone is worthy of worship. The Unity of Allaah-SWT was the basic and the foremost concept preached by all the Messengers-AS  and has always been the corner-stone of all Divine Religions. It must be remembered that concept of Unity demands having a single focal point of all hopes, whereas mere verbal declaration of Allah-SWT's Oneness will in fact be a superficial acceptance of Unity.


Prophet Hud-AS told his people that their relationship with Allaah-SWT ’ had deteriorated so much that they no longer felt embarrassed over their conduct. Belief in Unity of Allaah-SWT actually depends upon one's inner relation with Him-SWT ’ termed as Taqwa. Once this link is broken, a person begins to idolize many as his Rabb-SWT , even though he is not vocal about it.


The chieftains of Ad who were rejoicing their leadership clue to the false religion were outraged. They told him  that his words made no sense to them. How could the propensities and practices of their forefathers, which had always proved beneficial, be wrong? He  was either unaware or had some vested interest, they said.


Prophet Hud-AS rebutted that he was certainly not insane, as whatever he had told them could only have been discerned by a Prophet-AS. All the philosophers, savants and intellectuals of the world put together can never find a clue to Allah-SWT's Attributes. It is the Prophets-AS who know, being directly instructed by Him-SWT . Prophet Hud-AS added that he too was Allah-SWT's Messenger-AS and was assigned to convey the Message of the Creator and the Provider of the universe. Moreover, his sole aim was not only to convey the Message but he also deeply sympathized with them. He sincerely wanted to help them improve their ways as he was also a trustee. Prophets-AS are trustees in all matters; that is, in conveying the Divine Message, exerting efforts and sincerely wishing to reform people.


He inquired as to why did it amaze them that Allaah-SWT ’ had chosen a commoner from amongst them for Prophethood, and not a chieftain or an angel, to inform them of the end results of their deeds! He told his people to remember the times gone by, when Prophet Nuh-AS was sent as Allaah-SWT ’'s Messenger-AS, whose teachings were the same. Repudiation of his teachings had destroyed the disobedient. Allah-SWT erased them from the face of this earth and brought in a generation (the Ad) stronger and more powerful, blessed with prosperity and affluence. It was only appropriate that they should show gratitude to the Real Bestower, rather than stubbornly clinging to their religious heritage. They bragged that if Allaah-SWT would punish them for being loyal to their deities, then let it happen. In any case they would never abandon the rituals of their ancestors.


A Sign of Allah-SWT ’s Annoyance

When sin crosses certain limits, it invokes Allaah-SWT ’s Wrath, symbolized by the loss of the capacity to repent. Instead of being embarrassed, a person feels proud of his wickedness. This state of affairs is a punishment by itself and it was the condition of People of Ad when Prophet Hud-AS was raised. He repeatedly warned them. He declared that it was a punishment from Allaah-SWT that they were exerting all their energies in proving hypothetical gods as their Providers. He warned them that if they preferred their rituals over the Divine Message they must stand by for the consequences while he too would be doing so.


The Prophetic lights he generously dissipated were absorbed only by those hearts, which had not lost the ability of acceptance completely. And those hardened and rendered barren by a constant indulgence in sin were ruined. Winds, normally a sign of glad tidings and life, were imposed on them as Divine Punishment. It was a nation of tall and well built people living in lofty mansions, which were demolished by the furious winds. The trees were uprooted and the stormy and shrieking winds tossed people and animals to the ground, smashing them to pieces. For those with enlightened hearts, Prophet Hud-AS threw a cordon around them within which the weather remained normal. The winds inside the cordon were harbingers of Divine Mercy whereas outside they were a manifestation of His-SWT Fury.


This punishment was awarded to them when they persistently disobeyed Allaah-SWT and their Qulub were rendered incapable of accepting guidance. The darkness enveloping their hearts had intensified so much that they were deprived of Divine Mercy and were seized by His-SWT Wrath. This is why Allaah-SWT says: "They were not to believe."