Path Towards Enlightenment (808)
Welcome to our program "Path towards Enlightenment" in which we present you a fluent and easy-to-understand explanation of the ayahs of the holy Qur’an.
First we listen to and read ayah 39 of Surah Saffaat:
“And you will be requited only for what you used to do”
If you remember in our last episode of "Path towards Enlightenment" three weeks ago, we had discussed the slanders and wild accusations of the pagan Arabs and other disbelievers against the Almighty’s Last and Greatest Messenger, Prophet Mohammad (SAWA). We had said that God has decreed severe punishment on the Resurrection Day for such elements if they do not repent sincerely, rectify their beliefs, and seek forgiveness from the All-Merciful Lord while they are still alive.
The ayah that we recited to you now means to say that the Divine Punishment of the unrepentant sinners and disbelievers is not due to revenge or hate, but it is the result of their own misdeeds and blasphemy in this world.
The thoughts, words and deeds of a person have profound effect on his/her soul, whether positive or negative, and thus makes or mars his/her personality and the course of the soul when it leaves the body. On Judgment Day, reward and retribution is meted out in accordance with what a person had done while alive, and in a manner that is proportional to the deed. Disbelief, denial of truth, intransigence, arrogance, and blasphemy have destructive and harmful effects on the soul, which means that on the Day of Resurrection there is nothing but the fire of hell for such persons.
It should be noted that most worldly punishments are temporary in nature, but the punishment in afterlife is severe, lasting and for the polytheists and atheists, of permanent nature.
From this ayah we learn that:
- Divine punishment is in accordance with the deed done and the consequence of that particular deed after the All-Merciful has shown mercy.
- The Day of Resurrection is the day on which the results of our thoughts, words and deeds, give the firsthand testimony themselves.
Now we listen to and read ayahs 40 to 44 of Surah Saffaat:
“—[All] except Allah’s exclusive servants.”
“For such there is a known provision;”
“—Fruits—and they will be held in honour;”
“In the gardens of bliss;”
“[Reclining] on couches, facing one another;”
Following the infernal group that was described in the previous ayah, these ayahs describe the bliss of paradise for the believers and means to say that those who spent a life of virtue and obedience to Divine Commandments are indeed the exclusive servants of God on the Day of Judgment and are far away from the torments that engulf the disbelievers and sinners. In paradise, the virtuous servants of God enjoy all kinds of blessings, basking in full comfort without the least discomfiture.
In the language of the holy Qur’an, the word "sincere" is applied for someone who tries to do good works purely for God and to move on the path of spiritual perfection. Meanwhile the word "sincere" is also applied for someone whom God has purified for his virtue and enabled him/her to reach the peak of spiritual perfection.
For instance, regarding Prophet Joseph who with the grace of God saved himself from the seductions of Potiphar’s wife, Zuleikha, the holy Qu’ran says: He was a sincere servant of God.
It is natural that the person who is immersed in impurities, immoralities, and obscenities, without the intention to purify himself/herself of sins and misdeeds, God leaves such persons to their fate, without force or compulsion to rectify or purify, although the paths of guidance and the doors of forgiveness are wide open for the penitents. As for those who sincerely adhere to the straight and unwavering path of God and are careful in doing anything, except for the sake of God, Divine Grace is always there to enable such persons to reach the peaks of perfection.
Thus, the virtuous are blessed with the bliss of paradise, where rewards are manifold and beyond imagination as gifts for their sincerity. Their sincere intentions also earn them reward, though they may have not practically carried out their good intentions.
From these ayahs we learn that:
- God’s grace guides the virtuous towards the peaks of perfection.
- The punishment of wrongdoers is based on divine justice and in proportion to their actions, but the rewards of pure and honest people are based on divine grace and beyond their actions.
- In Paradise, both material and spiritual blessings galore.
- The company of Prophets, Imams, saints and the virtuous in paradise, is indeed one of spiritual pleasures.
Now we listen to and read ayahs 45 to 49 of Surah Saffat:
“Served around with a cup from a clear fountain,”
“Snow-white, delicious to the drinkers,”
“Wherein there will be neither headache nor will it cause them stupefaction,”
“And with them will be maidens of restrained glances with big [beautiful] eyes,”
“As if they were hidden ostrich eggs.”
These ayahs describe some of the blessings of paradise which the believers enjoy, reclining or seated on couches, far more comfortable than what human mind had created in the world. They are served with foods and pure drinks, more delicious than what were available in the world. And these pleasures are inexhaustible, without any slightest ailment, and they will be blessed with the companionship of sincere and virtuous maidens.
As the chicken hides its egg under its wing to keep it out of reach of others, the blessed maidens of paradise are exclusively loyal to their spouses, and conceal their beauty and bodies from the glances of others.
From these ayahs we learn that:
- Resurrection is physical and there are various types of physical pleasures in paradise.
- White is among the colours of paradise, and is a sign of brightness, beauty, purity and cleanliness.
- The maidens of paradise are beautiful, virtuous, chaste and exclusively for their spouses.