Path towards Enlightenment (953)
Welcome to another episode of our weekly series titled “Path towards Enlightenment” which is an endeavour to make you and us familiar with an easy and fluent explanation of God’s Final Scripture to all mankind, the holy Qur’an, which was revealed to the Last and Greatest of all Messengers, Prophet Mohammad (blessings of God upon him and his progeny).
We continue from where we left you last week, and here is Ayah 16 of Surah Qaaf.
“And certainly We have created man and We know to what his soul tempts him and We are nearer to him than his jugular vein.”
If you might recall, in our explanation of the previous Ayahs of this Surah last Friday, we had said that in debates with the deniers of truth we should apply the rationality of the cross-questioning method in order to awaken their minds and guide them to the ultimate truth, in view of the fact that those who do not believe in the Day of Resurrection have no logic and only express their doubts.
The Ayah that we recited to you refers to Almighty God’s Omniscience in knowing every minute thing including the future, and His Majestic Attributes of Originating creation. Thus, the Creator is All-Aware of the outward and inward qualities and deeds of His creatures, and is fully Aware that the disbelievers’ denial of Resurrection springs from deviation and temptations despite the fact that their innate natural disposition is aware of their origin. It means to say that if only the deniers of Resurrection made use of their God-given reason, they would have resisted satanic temptations and acknowledged the veracity of Resurrection without entertaining any doubts as to the same.
In other words, Allah created human beings, and thus as the Almighty Creator, He is aware of mankind’s inherent weaknesses. He gave mankind intellect, consciousness and free-will. As for the phrase “nearer than the jugular vein” it implies that Allah knows, more truly, the innermost state of every person’s feelings and consciousness, than does that person.
The Arabic word ‘wareed’ means the vein is connected to the heart and liver through which blood flows, while “wareedaan” are applied to the twin blood vessels connecting the heart to the brain on which the body depends for survival. It is one of the closest things to a person’s life, since if blood flow suffers from any defect, the person will die.
Thus, since existence of every person depends upon God Almighty, He is closer to us than our jugular vein that keeps us alive. Such closeness reflects that God Almighty is closer to us than anything else, and consequently aware of every anything, even thoughts and intentions that flash across our mind, as well as temptations occurring in our hearts. The All-Merciful, however, does not punish mankind for evil intentions and thoughts, unless these are turned into action.
This Ayah teaches us that:
- The Almighty Creator’s knowledge and power are infinite and everything is in His control, which means if a person thinks that God is unaware of his thoughts he is in grossly mistaken.
- Like our bodily organs, we should take proper care of our soul in order to prevent it from falling prey to satanic temptations.
Now let’s listen to Ayahs 17 and 18 of this Surah:
“When the twin recorders record [a person’s deeds], seated on the right hand and the left;
“He says no word, but that there is a ready observer beside him.”
These Ayahs means that Divine Omniscience in order to document every person’s inward and outward deeds, has assigned two angels to keep records that can never be refuted on the Resurrection Day. The two angels do not actually sit on the right on the right but always accompany a person from both angles to keep detailed record of deeds, even noting down every single word uttered. God the All-Merciful, however, has instructed the angels that in case of a bad deed or bad words to grant the said person some hours before noting them down, in order to provide ample opportunity for repentance and seeking forgiveness.
From these Ayahs we learn the following points:
- Although God is all aware of our inward and outward deeds, words, and thoughts, He has assigned angels for every person so that all actions and intentions are recorded as documented proof.
- It is obvious that our human eyes are not designed to perceive angels who are invisible since their essence of creation is different from that of all earthly creatures.
- Every person is responsible for not only his/her deeds but for words uttered, so we ought to be careful and desist from evil actions or verbal expression that unjustly cause harm to others and to our own selves because of bad behaviour.
Now we recite to you Ayahs 19, 20, 21 and 22 of Surah Qaaf as the concluding Ayahs of this week’s episode:
“Then the agony of death brings the truth: ‘This is what you used to shun!’
“Then the Trumpet will be blown: ‘This is the promised day.’
“Then every person will come forth [on to the scene of Resurrection] accompanied by (two angels, that is) a driver (pushing forward) and a witness (testifying all words and deeds).
“You were certainly oblivious of this. We have removed your veil from you, and so your sight is acute today.’”
At the moment of death every person loses his/her consciousness. It means the stupor of death, accompanied by agony and loss of consciousness, is the moment of truth, which people had tried in vain to evade.
The next stage will be the resurrection of every person, heralded with the blowing of the Great Trumpet for the final judgement on the day that had been promised and foretold by all prophets of God, but ignored by the disbelievers. Blowing the Trumpet here refers to its second blowing, since according to the holy Qur’an and Hadith, the first blowing of the trumpet will cause every person to perish and no creature shall remain alive. Thus, upon the second blowing of the trumpet, all creatures find a new life and all the dead human beings emerge from their graves, even those whose bodies had been mutilated, burned, and the ashes scattered, will be assembled in their original form.
Ayah 21 means to tell the disbelievers that no one may escape or deny reckoning on judgement day, as the two angels assigned for every person drive that person to the Divine Tribunal and read out from the documented record of deeds.
The next Ayah refers to the words of the angels, who tell the disbelievers in their custody: This is the Day against which you were warned by the Prophets but you were heedless. Today, the veils are removed from your eyes and you sight is sharp. You see what you used to disbelieve and deny.”
In other words, all transgressors and disbeliever shall have a clear vision to see the consequences of their evil which they could not perceive or deemed improbable during their life on earth.
In contrast to the miserable fate of the disbelievers, hypocrites and the sinners who face Divine wrath, the souls of the believers at the time of their death willingly turn toward the other world and the angel of death will bear to them the glad tidings of Paradise and its Bounties. Divine Mercy will be bestowed upon believers and veils will be cast from their eyes and they will see the abodes prepared for them.
From these Ayahs we learn that:
- There is no escape from death for any person or creature.
- The agony of death will occur to every human being, since the fear of death and anxiety of its aftermath, make them, especially the disbelievers, lose their senses.
- It is the negligence of afterlife that causes people to indulge in worldly greed, pleasures, and oppression of the rights of others
- The mortal world acts as a veil and prevents human from perceiving facts and realities, but on the Day of Resurrection these veils are removed and every person will realize the plain truth.