Surah No 22: Al-Hajj
Number of Ayats: Seventy-eight
Meaning of the name: Hazrat Ibrahim (AS) was told to invite people to come to the House of Allah (Bait-ullah) and perform Hajj and this is stated in ayat no 27.
Summary: This is a Madni surah. In the beginning the great earthquake that will occur before the Day of Judgment is mentioned and the horrifying scene is described. The day of Resurrection has also been mentioned when the dead will wake again.
To believe in Allah when He blesses us or when good happens, and then to disbelieve and turn away from Allah when we are faced with trials and tribulations, such a person will lose both this world and the Hereafter. And if he specifically turns to someone else for help instead of Allah then he has strayed from the right path.
The call for Hajj has been given in this surah. Hazrat Muhammad (SAW) said “Whoever performs Hajj for Allah and during that period abstains from wrongdoings; he will come back cleansed from all his sins like a child who has just been born.” The way of sacrifice that has been prescribed for every nation is described in detail. It is stated that the animals that are offered for sacrifice are but symbols of Allah which show the good that He has bestowed upon us. After sacrifice we are to eat, then give those who do not ask, and to those who ask. To be in a position to be able to do good to others makes us grateful to Allah.
The importance of offering five prayers a day has also been stressed. It is stated that a messenger’s duty is only to convey what Allah has said, but he cannot force them, should not pass judgment or give punishment to people. We are also told to always work sincerely in the way of Allah as He has ordered. We have been given permission to fight those people who fight with us or drive us out of our land just because we believe in Allah.
We also learn that Allah gave the name ‘Musalman’ to momin, this is stated in the last ayat “It is He (Allah) Who has named you Muslims both before and in this (the Quran), that the Messenger Muhammad (SAW) may be a witness over you and you be a witness over mankind!….” (22:78)
Surah No 23: Al-Muminun
Number of Ayats: One hundred and eighteen
Meaning of the name: The surah takes its name from ayat no 1.
Summary: This is a Maaki surah. At the time of its revelation Hazrat Muhammad (SAW) said that “On this occasion ten such verses have been sent down to me that the one who measures up to them, will most surely go to Paradise.” Then he recited the initial verses of the surah. Therefore the characteristics of those who will be forgiven and whose final abode will be heaven are given as follows: 1) who offer their prayers with sincerity 2) who are humble 3) who give charity, 4) who abstain from wrongdoings 5) who fulfill their trusts and promises 6) who try to get closer to Allah through prayer and worship.
The stages in the creation of man are given in detail which is indeed a wondrous phenomenon. Again various prophets have been mentioned to signify that people were warned again and again but they never listened and that is why they perished. The difficulties that such people will face at the time of death are mentioned. Therefore nothing can help on the Day of Judgment expect true faith and good deeds.
The True believers keep on giving charity and do good deeds because they remain in fear of whether it will be accepted by Allah or not. It is stated that even if people speak evil of you, in your presence or behind your back or wrong you in any way, all is known to Allah. But it is not for us to punish them, we should try our best not to retaliate and choose a way that would keep evil away. The best way to do that is constantly seek Allah’s guidance and blessings. Never let the curiosity get the better of you, and we must seek refuge with Allah against the suggestions of Shaitan.
The surah starts and ends on the same thing that the believers i.e. those who have true faith will be the ones who will be victorious.
Surah No 24: An-Nur
Number of Ayats: Sixty four
Meaning of the name: It takes its name from ayat no 35. It has been named ‘Nur’ because it consists of teachings that are like a beacon of light for anyone who follows them.
Summary: This is a Madni surah. In this Allah has given many commands. In the beginning it is stated in detail what the consequences of adultery are and how such a situation should be dealt with. It is said that it is very wrong to slander an innocent woman, and in order to convince that the accusation is correct one is required to bring forward at least four witnesses. We are strictly ordered not to indulge in scandals. It highlights a very well known incident in which after returning from a battle, Hazrat Aisha (RA) was left behind. The next day she was found by someone and he brought her back. This gave the enemies a chance to create a scandal against the pious lady. Hazrat Muhammad (SAW) was greatly perturbed over the situation, so Allah revealed ayats (11-20) to prove her innocence.
Allah is the light of the heavens and the earth, and Allah asks us to seek His light. Whoever turns away from his light will be surrounded by utter darkness. However Allah shows the right path to whomever he wants. That is why those who preach Allah’s truth, are themselves enlightened and become the medium through which that light spreads and enters human life.
A major part of the surah points out the certain etiquettes that should be practiced within a society. For instance it is absolutely wrong to enter someone’s house without permission. The importance of greeting is highlighted; furthermore we should have self-respect as well as respect others in small things as well as great. The rule of modesty applies to men as well as women, but women are advised to be more careful and not make a display of themselves. A Muslim family should be pious, reserved, and should follow Allah’s teachings strictly. Moreover a nation should not indulge in any such activity that would result in social degradation, rebellion, loss of honor or respect.
It is also stated that one must comply with the rules and customs when visiting a mosque. Hazrat Muhammad (SAW) said, “The reward of offering your prayers with a congregation as compared to doing so alone is 25 times more. The reason is that when a man after performing ablution heads towards a mosque to say his prayers, then in return for every step he takes, his rank is elevated and one sin is erased”.