In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

 

Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

1     Praise be to Allah Who hath sent to His Servant the Book and hath allowed therein no Crookedness: 2325 2326

2     (He hath made it) Straight (and Clear) in order that He may warn (the godless) of a terrible Punishment from Him and that He may give Glad Tidings to the Believers who work righteous deeds that they shall have a goodly Reward. 2327

3     Wherein they shall remain forever: 2328

4     Further that He may warn those (also) who say "Allah hath begotten a son": 2329

5     No knowledge have they of such a thing nor had their fathers.  It is a grievous thing that issues from their mouths as a saying.  What they say is nothing but falsehood! 2330

6     Thou wouldst only perchance fret thyself to death following after them in grief if they believe not in this Message. 2331

7     That which is on earth We have made but as a glittering show for the earth in order that We may test them as to which of them are best in conduct. 2332

8     Verily what is on earth We shall make but as dust and dry soil (without growth or herbage). 2333

9     Or dost thou reflect that the Companions of the Cave and of the Inscription were wonders among Our Signs? 2334 2335 2336

10   Behold the youths betook themselves to the Cave: they said "Our Lord! bestow on us Mercy from Thyself and dispose of our affair for us in the right way! 2337 2338

11   Then We drew (a veil) over their ears for a number of years in the cave (so that they heard not): 2339

12   Then We roused them in order to test which of the two parties was best at calculating the term of years they had tarried! 2340 2341


Transliteration

Ayah 1     

Yusuf Ali           Praise be to Allah Who hath sent to His Servant the Book and hath allowed therein no Crookedness: 

Transliteration   Al hamdu lilla_hil lazi anzala 'ala_ 'abdihil kita_ba wa lam yaj'al lahu_ 'iwaja_(n).

Ayah 2     

Yusuf Ali           (He hath made it) Straight (and Clear) in order that He may warn (the godless) of a terrible Punishment from Him and that He may give Glad Tidings to the Believers who work righteous deeds that they shall have a goodly Reward.

Transliteration   Qayyimal liyunzira ba'san syadidam mil ladunhu wa yubasysyiral mu'mininal lazina ya'malu_nas sa_liha_ti anna lahum ajran hasana_(m),

Ayah 3     

Yusuf Ali           Wherein they shall remain forever:

Transliteration   Ma_kisina fihi abada_(w),

Ayah 4     

Yusuf Ali           Further that He may warn those (also) who say "Allah hath begotten a son":

Transliteration   Wa yunziral lazina qa_lu-ttakhazalla_hu walada_(m),

Ayah 5     

Yusuf Ali           No knowledge have they of such a thing nor had their fathers.  It is a grievous thing that issues from their mouths as a saying.  What they say is nothing but falsehood!

Transliteration   Ma_ lahum bihi min 'ilmiw wa la_ li'a_ba_'ihim, kaburat kalimatan takhruju min afwa_hihim, iy yaqu_lu_na illa_ kaziba_(n).

Ayah 6     

Yusuf Ali           Thou wouldst only perchance fret thyself to death following after them in grief if they believe not in this Message.

Transliteration   Fa la'allaka ba_khi'un nafsaka 'ala_ a_sa_rihim il lam yu'minu_  bi ha_zal hadisi asafa_(n).

Ayah 7     

Yusuf Ali           That which is on earth We have made but as a glittering show for the earth in order that We may test them as to which of them are best in conduct.

Transliteration   Inna_ ja'alna_ ma_ 'alal ardi zinatal laha_ linabluwahum ayyuhum ahsanu 'amala_(n).

Ayah 8     

Yusuf Ali           Verily what is on earth We shall make but as dust and dry soil (without growth or herbage).

Transliteration   Wa inna_ laja_'ilu_na ma_ 'alaiha_  sa'idan juruza_(n).

Ayah 9     

Yusuf Ali           Or dost thou reflect that the Companions of the Cave and of the Inscription were wonders among Our Signs?  

Transliteration   Am hasibta anna asha_bal kahfi  war raqimi ka_nu_ min a_ya_tina_ 'ajaba_(n).

Ayah 10   

Yusuf Ali           Behold the youths betook themselves to the Cave: they said "Our Lord! bestow on us Mercy from Thyself and dispose of our affair for us in the right way! 

Transliteration   Iz awal fityatu ilal kahfi  faqa_lu_ rabbana_ a_tina_ mil ladunka rahmataw wa hayyi' lana_ min amrina_ rasyada_(n).

Ayah 11   

Yusuf Ali           Then We drew (a veil) over their ears for a number of years in the cave (so that they heard not):

Transliteration   Fa darabna_ 'ala_ a_za_nihim fil kahfi sinina 'adada_(n).

Ayah 12   

Yusuf Ali           Then We roused them in order to test which of the two parties was best at calculating the term of years they had tarried! 

Transliteration   Summa ba'asna_hum lina'lama ayyul hizbaini ahsa_ lima_ labisu_ amada_(n).


Introduction

Name

This Surah takes its name from v. 9 in which the word (al-kahf) occurs.

 Period of Revelation

This is the first of those Surahs which were sent down in the third stage of Prophethood at Makkah. We have already divided the life of the Holy Prophet at Makkah into four stages in the Introduction to Chapter 6. According to that division the third stage lasted from the fifth to the tenth year of Prophethood. What distinguishes this stage from the second and the fourth stages is this. During the second stage the Quraish mainly resorted to ridiculing, scoffing, threatening, tempting, raising objections and making false propaganda against the Holy Prophet and his followers in order to suppress the Islamic Movement. But during the third stage they employed the weapons of persecution, manhandling and economic pressure for the same purpose. So much so that a large number of the Muslims had to emigrate from Arabia to Habash, and those who remained behind were besieged in Shi'ib Abi Talib along with the Holy Prophet and his family. To add to their misery, a complete social and economic boycott was applied against them. The only redeeming feature was that there were two personalities, Abu Talib and Hadrat Khadijah, whose personal influence had been conducive to the support of two great families of the Quraish. However, when in the tenth year of Prophethood these two persons died, the fourth stage began with such revere persecutions as forced the Holy Prophet and all his Companions to emigrate from Makkah.

It appears from the theme of the Surah that it was revealed at the beginning of the third stage when in spite of persecutions and opposition, migration to Habash had not yet taken place. That is why the story of "Ashab-i-Kahf" (the Sleepers of the Cave) has been related to comfort and encourage the persecuted Muslims and to show them how the righteous people have been saving their Faith in the past.

 Subject and Topics

This Surah was sent down in answer to the three questions which the mushriks of Makkah, in consultation with the people of the Book, had put to the Holy Prophet in order to test him. These were:

1.      Who were "the Sleepers of the Cave"?

2.      What is the real story of Khidr?

3.      What do you know about Zul- Qarnain?

As these three questions and the stories involved concerned the history of the Christians and the Jews, and were unknown in Hijaz, a choice of these was made to test whether the Holy Prophet possessed any source of the knowledge of the hidden and unseen things. Allah, however, not only gave a complete answer to their questions but also employed the three stories to the disadvantage of the opponents of Islam in the conflict that was going on at that time at Makkah between Islam and unbelief.

The questioners were told that "the Sleepers of the Cave" believed in the same doctrine of Tauhid which was being put forward in the Quran and that their condition was similar to the condition of the persecuted Muslims of Makkah. On the other hand, the persecutors of the Sleepers of the Cave had behaved in the same way towards them as the disbelievers of the Quraish were behaving towards the Muslims. Besides this, the Muslims have been taught that even if a Believer is persecuted by a cruel society, he should not bow down before falsehood but emigrate from the place all alone, if need be, with trust in God. Incidentally the disbelievers of Makkah were told that the story of the Sleepers of the Cave was a clear proof of the creed of the Hereafter, for this showed that Allah has the power to resurrect anyone He wills even after a long sleep of death as He did in case of the Sleepers of the Cave.

The story of the Sleepers of the Cave has also been used to warn the chiefs of Makkah who were persecuting the small newly formed Muslim Community. At the same time, the Holy Prophet has been instructed that he should in no case make a compromise with their persecutors nor should he consider them to be more important than his poor followers. On the other hand, those chiefs have been admonished that they should not be puffed up with the transitory life of pleasure they were then enjoying but should seek after those excellences which are permanent and eternal.

The story of Khidr and Moses has been related in such a way as to supply the answer to the question of the disbelievers and to give comfort to the Believers as well. The lesson contained in this story is this: You should have full faith in the wisdom of what is happening in the Divine Factory in accordance with the will of Allah. As the reality is hidden from you, you are at a loss to understand the wisdom of what is happening, and sometimes if it appears that things are going against you, you cry out, "How and why has this happened?". The fact is that if the curtain be removed from the "unseen", you would yourselves come to know that what is happening here is for the best. Even if sometimes it appears that something is going against you, you will see that in the end it also produces some good results for you.

The same is true of the story of zul-Qarnain for it also admonishes the questioners, as if to say, "O you vain chiefs of Makkah you should learn a lesson from zul-Qarnain. Though he was a great ruler, a great conqueror and the owner of great resources, yet he always surrendered to his Creator, whereas you are rebelling against Him even though you are insignificant chieftains in comparison with him. Besides this, though zul-Qarnain built one of the strongest walls for protection, yet his real trust was in Allah and not in the 'wall'. He believed that the wall could protect him against his enemies as long as it was the will of Allah and that there would be cracks and holes in it, when it would be His will; whereas you who possess only insignificant fortified abodes and dwellings in comparison with him, consider yourselves to be permanently safe and secure against all sorts of calamities."

While the Quran turned the tables on the questioners who had tried to "expose" the Holy Prophet, in the end of the Surah the same things have been reiterated that were stated at its beginning: "Tauhid and the Hereafter are absolutely true and real and for your own good you should accept these doctrines, mend your ways in accordance with them and live in this world with this conviction that you are accountable to Allah: otherwise you shall ruin your life and all your doings shall be set at naught."


Notes

2325  See n. 2324 to xvii. 111. The theme of the last Sura, that Allah is good and worthy of all praise from His creatures, to whom He has granted a clear revelation, is continued in this Sura. The spirit of man makes gradual progress upwards, through the grace and mercy of Allah. (18.1)

2326  Some people's idea of a Sacred Book is that it should be full of mysteries-dark corners, ambiguous expressions, words so far removed from human speech that they cover anything or nothing. Pagan oracles were couched in language which suggested one meaning to the hearer and claimed to have the very opposite meaning in the light of events which actually happened subsequently. They were distinctly crooked, not straight. In the next verse the word "Straight" (qaiyim) is used to characterize the Qur-an, in contrast to this word "crooked" ('iwaj). See also xix. 36 n. 2488. (18.1)

2327  Qaiyim: straight, that which has no bends and no corners to mystify people, that which speaks clearly and unambiguously, that which guides to the right path. Cf. ix. 36, where the adjective is used for a straight usage, in contrast to usages, which tend to mystify and deceive people. The Qur-an is above all things straight, clear, and perspicuous. Its directions are plain for everyone to understand. Any book that deals with the highest mysteries of spiritual life must necessarily have portions whose full meaning is clearer to some minds than to others not so well prepared. But here there is nowhere any mystification, any desire to wrap up things in dark sayings repugnant to human reason. Allah's purpose is to give clear warning of spiritual dangers and lead up to the highest bliss. (18.2)

2328  Cf. iv. 122, xliii. 71, lxv. 11, xcviii. 8. (18.3)

2329  The warning is not only needed for those who deny Allah or deny His Message, but also for those whose false ideas of Allah degrade religion in supposing that Allah begot a son, for Allah is One and is High above any ideas of physical reproduction. (18.4)

2330  The attribution of a son "begotten" to Allah has no basis in fact or in reason. It is only a "word" or "saying" that issues out of their mouths. It is not even a dogma that is reasoned out or can be explained in any way that is consistent with the sublime attributes of Allah. (18.5)

2331  In a reasonable world the preaching of a reasonable Faith like that of Islam would win universal acceptance. But the world is not altogether reasonable. It caused great distress to the unselfish Preacher of Islam that his Message met with so much opposition. He wanted to point the way to salvation. He only got, in the Makkans period, abuse from the chiefs of the Makkans-abuse and persecution, not only for himself but for the Truth which he was preaching. A heart less stout than his might have been appalled at what seemed the hopeless task of reclaiming the world from falsehood, superstition, selfishness, wrong, and oppression. He is here consoled, and told that he was not to fret himself to death: he was nobly doing his duty, and, as after-events showed, the seed of Truth was already germinating, although this was not visible at the time. Besides, these "chiefs" and "leaders" were only strutting in false plumes: their glory was soon to fade for ever. (18.6)

2332  This world's goods-,worldly power, glory, wealth, position, and all that men scramble for,-are but a fleeting show. The possession or want of them does not betoken a man's real value or position in the coming world, the world which is to endure. Yet they have their uses. They test a man's sterling quality. He who becomes their slave loses rank in the next world. He who uses them if he gets them, and does not fall into despair if he does not get them, shows his true mettle and quality. His conduct proclaims him. (18.7)

2333  The fairest sights on the earth will become as dust and waste when this earth vanishes, and true spiritual values are restored. (18.8)

2334  A wonderful story or allegory is now referred to. Its lessons are: (1) the relativity of Time, (2) the unreality of the position of oppressor and oppressed, persecutor and presecuted, on this earth, (3) the truth of the final Resurrection, when true values will be restored, and (4) the potency of Faith and Prayer to lead to the Right. (18.9)

2335  The unbelieving Quraish were in the habit of putting posers to the holy Prophet-questions which they got from Christians and Jews, which they thought the Prophet would be unable to answer. In this way they hoped to discredit him. One of these questions was about the floating Christian story of the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus. The Prophet not only told them the main story but pointed out the variations that were current, and rebuked men for disputing about such details (xviii. 22). Most important of all, he treated the story (under inspiration) as a parable, pointing to lessons of the highest value. This is Revelation in the highest sense of the term. The story is recapitulated in n. 2337 below. (18.9)

2336  Raqim = Inscription. So interpreted by the Jalalain, and the majority of Commentators agree. See n. 2337, below. Others think it was the name of the dog: see xviii. 18, and n. 2350 below. (18.9)

2337  The bare Christian story (without the spiritual lessons taught in the Qur-an) is told in Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (end of chapter 33). In the reign of a Roman Emperor who persecuted the Christians, seven Christian youths of Ephesus left the town and hid themselves in a cave in a mountain near by. They fell asleep, and remained asleep for some generations or centuries. When the wall which sealed up the cave was being demolished, the youths awoke. They still thought of the world in which they had previously lived. They had no idea of the duration of time. But when one of them went to the town to purchase provisions, he found that the whole world had changed. The Christian religion, instead of being persecuted was fashionable: in fact it was now the State religion. His dress and speech, and the money which he brought, seemed to belong to another world. This attracted attention. The great ones of the land visited the Cave, and verified the tale by questioning the man's Companions. When the story became very popular and circulated throughout the Roman Empire, we may well suppose that an Inscription was put up at the mouth of the Cave. See verse 9 and n. 2336. This inscription was probably to be seen for many years afterwards, as Ephesus was a famous city on the west coast of Asia Minor, about forty to fifty miles south of Smyrna. Later on, the Khalifa Wathiq (842-846 A.D.) sent an expedition to examine and identify the locality, as he did about the Zul-Qarnain barrier in Central Asia. A popular story circulating from mouth to mouth would necessarily be vague as to dates and vary very much in details. Somewhere about the 6th century A.D. a Syriac writer reduced it to writing. He suggested that the youths were seven in number; that they went to sleep in the reign of the Emperor Decius (who reigned from 249 to 251 A.D., and who was a violent persecutor of Christianity); and that they awoke in the reign of Theodosius 11, who reigned from 408 to 450 A.D. In our literature Decius is known as Daqyanus (from the adjectival Latin from Decianus), and the name stands as a symbol of injustice and oppression, and also of things old fashioned and out-of-date, as res Decianae must have been two or three centuries after Decius. (18.10)

2338  The youths hid in the cave, but they trusted in Allah, and made over their whole case to Him in prayer. Then they apparently fell asleep, and knew nothing of what was happening in the world outside. (18.10)

2339  Drew (a veil) over their ears: i.e., sealed their ears, so that they heard nothing. As they were in the Cave they saw nothing. So they were completely cut off from the outer world. It was as if they had died, with their knowledge and ideas remaining at the point of time when they had entered the Cave. It is as if a watch stops at the exact moment of some accident, and any one taking it up afterwards can precisely fix the time of the accident. (18.11)

2340  Roused them: or raised them up from their sleep or whatever condition they had fallen into (xviii, 18), so that they began to perceive the things around them, but only with the memories of the time at which they had ceased to be in touch with the world. (18.12)

2341  When they awoke to consciousness, they had lost all count of time. Though they had all entered together, and lain together in the same place for the same length of time, their impressions of the time they had passed were quite different. Time is thus related to our own internal experiences. We have to learn the lesson that men as good as ourselves may yet differ as to their reactions to certain facts, and that in such matters disputes are unseemly. It is best to say, "Allah knows best" (xviii. 19). (18.12)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

13   We relate to thee their story in truth: they were youths who believed in their Lord and We advanced them in guidance: 2342

14   We gave strength to their hearts: Behold they stood up and said: "Our Lord is the Lord of the heavens and of the earth: never shall we call upon any god other than Him: if we did; we should indeed have uttered an enormity!" 2343 2344

15   "These our people have taken for worship gods other than Him: why do they not bring forward an authority clear (and convincing) for what they do? Who doth more wrong than such as invent a falsehood against Allah? 2345

16   "When ye turn away from them and the things they worship other than Allah betake yourselves to the Cave: your Lord will shower his mercies on you and dispose of your affair towards comfort and ease." 2346

17   Thou wouldst have seen the sun when it rose declining to the right from their Cave and when it set turning away from them to the left while they lay in the open space in the midst of the Cave.  Such are among the Signs of Allah: he whom Allah guided; but he whom Allah leaves to stray for him wilt thou find no protector to lead him to the Right Way. 2347 2348


Transliteration

Ayah 13   

Yusuf Ali           We relate to thee their story in truth: they were youths who believed in their Lord and We advanced them in guidance:

Transliteration   Nahnu naqussu 'alaika naba'ahum bil haqq(i), innahum fityatun a_manu_ bi rabbihim wa zidna_hum huda_(w),

Ayah 14   

Yusuf Ali           We gave strength to their hearts: Behold they stood up and said: "Our Lord is the Lord of the heavens and of the earth: never shall we call upon any god other than Him: if we did; we should indeed have uttered an enormity!" 

Transliteration   Wa rabatna_ 'ala_ qulu_bihim iz qa_mu_ faqa_lu_ rabbuna_ rabbus sama_wa_ti wal ardi lan nad'uwa min du_nihi ila_hal laqad qulna_ izan syatata_(n).

Ayah 15   

Yusuf Ali           "These our people have taken for worship gods other than Him: why do they not bring forward an authority clear (and convincing) for what they do? Who doth more wrong than such as invent a falsehood against Allah?

Transliteration   Ha_'ula_'i qaumuna-ttakhazu_ min du_nihi a_lihah(tan), lau la_ ya'tu_na 'alaihim bi sulta_nim bayyin(in), faman azlamu mim man-iftara_ nalalla_hi kaziba_(n).

Ayah 16   

Yusuf Ali           "When ye turn away from them and the things they worship other than Allah betake yourselves to the Cave: your Lord will shower his mercies on you and dispose of your affair towards comfort and ease."

Transliteration   Wa iz-i'tazaltumu_hum wa ma_ ya'budu_na illalla_ha fa'wu_ ilal kahfi yansyur lakum rabbukum mir rahmatihi wa yuhayyi' lakum min amrikum mirfaqa_(n).

Ayah 17   

Yusuf Ali           Thou wouldst have seen the sun when it rose declining to the right from their Cave and when it set turning away from them to the left while they lay in the open space in the midst of the Cave.  Such are among the Signs of Allah: he whom Allah guided; but he whom Allah leaves to stray for him wilt thou find no protector to lead him to the Right Way. 

Transliteration   Wa tarasy syamsa iza_ tala'at taza_waru 'an kahfihim za_tal yamini wa iza_ garabat taqriduhum za_tasy syima_li wa hum fi fajwatim minh(u), za_lika min a_ya_tilla_h(i), may yahdilla_hu fa huwal muhtadi wa may yudlil falan tajida lahu_ waliyyam mursyida_(n).


Notes

2342  Their Faith carried them higher and higher on the road to Truth. Faith is cumulative. Each step leads higher and higher, by the grace and mercy of Allah. (18.13)

2343  So that they were not afraid to speak out openly, and protest the truth of the Unity which they clearly saw in their own minds and hearts. (18.14)

2344  We may suppose them to have taken their stand and made a public protest before they betook themselves to the Cave (xviii. 16). The story really begins at xviii. 13, and the verses xviii. 9-12 may be considered as introductory. As the emphasis is on spiritual lessons, the facts stated in the introductory part are passed over lightly in the story. (18.14)

2345  Besides the heathen gods, the cult of the Emperors also became fashionable in the Roman Empire in the first three centuries of the Christian Era. The statue of Diana (Artemis) at Ephesus had been one of the wonders of the ancient world. The city was a great seaport and the capital of Roman Asia. We may therefore imagine how the heathen cults must have flourished there. St. Paul spent three years preaching there, and was mobbed and assaulted, and compelled to leave (Acts, xix. 1-4). (18.15)

2346  That is, 'do not be afraid of anything: put your whole case in the hands of Allah: at present you are being persecuted; he will solve your difficulties and give you ease and comfort'. The public protest ends at verse 15. In verse 16 they are taking counsel among themselves. After they go into the Cave, verse 17 introduces us to the scene where they are lying in the midst of the Cave in tranquil confidence in Allah. (18.16)

2347  In the latitude of Ephesus, 38 degrees north, i.e., well above the sun's northern declination, a cave opening to north, would never have the heat of the sun within it, as the sunny side would be the south. If the youths lay on their backs with their faces looking to the north, i.e., towards the entrance of the Cave, the sun would rise on their right side, declining to the south, and set on their left sides, leaving them cool and comfortable. (18.17)

2348  The youths, having faith and trust in Allah, found safety and refuge in the Cave. They were protected from the persecution and violence of the heathen. Their prayer (xviii. 16) was heard. (18.17)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

18   Thou wouldst have deemed them awake whilst they were asleep and We turned them on their right and their left sides: their dog stretching forth his two forelegs on the threshold: if thou hadst come up on to them thou wouldst have certainly turned back from them in flight and wouldst certainly have been filled with terror of them. 2349 2350 2351

19   Such (being their state) We raised them up (from sleep) that they might question each other.  Said one of them "How long have ye stayed (here)?" They said "We have stayed (perhaps) a day or part of a day." (At length) they (all) said "Allah (alone) knows best how long ye have stayed here...Now send ye then one of you with this money of yours to the town: let him find out which is the best food (to be had) and bring some to you that (ye may) satisfy hunger herewith: and let him behave with care and courtesy and let him not inform anyone about you. 2352 2353 2354

20   "For if thy should come upon you they would stone you or force you to return to their cult and in that case ye would never attain prosperity." 2355 2356

21   Thus did We make their case known to the people that they might know that the promise of Allah is true and that there can be no doubt about the Hour of Judgment.  Behold they dispute among themselves as to their affair.  (Some) said "Construct a building over them": their Lord knows best about them: those who prevailed over their affair said "Let us surely build a place of worship over them." 2357 2358

22   (Some) say they were three the dog being the fourth among them; (others) say they were five the dog being the sixth doubtfully guessing at the unknown; (yet others) say they were seven the dog being the eighth.  Say thou: "My Lord knoweth best their number; it is but few that know their (real case)." Enter not therefore into controversies concerning them except on a matter that is clear nor consult any of them about (the affair of) the Sleepers. 2359 2360 2361 2362


Transliteration

Ayah 18   

Yusuf Ali           Thou wouldst have deemed them awake whilst they were asleep and We turned them on their right and their left sides: their dog stretching forth his two forelegs on the threshold: if thou hadst come up on to them thou wouldst have certainly turned back from them in flight and wouldst certainly have been filled with terror of them.  

Transliteration   Wa tahsabuhum aiqa_zaw wa hum ruqu_d(uw), wa nuqallibuhum za_tal yamini wa za_tasy syima_l(i), wa kalbuhum ba_situn zira_'aihi bil wasid(i), law-ittala'ta 'alaihim lawallaita minhum fira_raw wa lamuli'ta minhum ru'ba_(n).

Ayah 19   

Yusuf Ali           Such (being their state) We raised them up (from sleep) that they might question each other.  Said one of them "How long have ye stayed (here)?" They said "We have stayed (perhaps) a day or part of a day." (At length) they (all) said "Allah (alone) knows best how long ye have stayed here...Now send ye then one of you with this money of yours to the town: let him find out which is the best food (to be had) and bring some to you that (ye may) satisfy hunger herewith: and let him behave with care and courtesy and let him not inform anyone about you.  

Transliteration   Wa kaza_lika ba'asna_hum  liyatasa_'alu_ bainahum, qa_la qa_'ilum minhum kam labistum, qa_lu_ labisna_ yauman au ba'da yaum(in), qa_lu_ rabbukum a'lamu bima_ labistum, fa-b'asu_ ahadakum bi wariqikum ha_zihi ilal madinati falyanzur ayyuha_ azka_ ta'a_man falya'tikum bi rizqim minhu walyatalattaf  wa la_ yusy'iranna bikum ahada_(n).

Ayah 20   

Yusuf Ali           "For if thy should come upon you they would stone you or force you to return to their cult and in that case ye would never attain prosperity." 

Transliteration   Innahum iy yazharu_ 'alaikum yarjumu_kum au yu'idu_kum fi millatihim wa lan tuflihu_ izan abada_(n).

Ayah 21   

Yusuf Ali           Thus did We make their case known to the people that they might know that the promise of Allah is true and that there can be no doubt about the Hour of Judgment.  Behold they dispute among themselves as to their affair.  (Some) said "Construct a building over them": their Lord knows best about them: those who prevailed over their affair said "Let us surely build a place of worship over them." 

Transliteration   Wa kaza_lika a'sarna_ 'alaihim liya'lamu_ anna wa'dalla_hi  haqquw wa annas sa_'ata la_ raiba fiha_, iz yatana_za'u_na bainahum amrahum faqa_lu-bnu_ 'alaihim bunya_na_(n), rabbuhum a'lamu bihim, qa_lal lazina galabu_ 'ala_ amrihim lanattakhizanna 'alaihim masjida_(n).

Ayah 22   

Yusuf Ali           (Some) say they were three the dog being the fourth among them; (others) say they were five the dog being the sixth doubtfully guessing at the unknown; (yet others) say they were seven the dog being the eighth.  Say thou: "My Lord knoweth best their number; it is but few that know their (real case)." Enter not therefore into controversies concerning them except on a matter that is clear nor consult any of them about (the affair of) the Sleepers.   

Transliteration   Sayaqu_lu_na sala_satur ra_bi'uhum kalbuhum, wa yaqu_lu_na khamsatun sa_disuhum kalbuhum rajmam bil gaib(i), wa yaqu_lu_na sab'atuw wa sa_minuhum kalbuhum, qur rabbi a'lamu bi 'iddatihim ma_ ya'lamuhum illa_ qalil(un), fala_ tuma_ri fihim illa_ mira_'an za_hira_(w), wa la_ tastafti fihim minhum ahada_(n).


Notes

2349  Perhaps their eyes were open, even though their senses were sealed in sleep. They turned about on their sides as men do in sleep. (18.18)

2350  The name of their dog is traditionally known as Qitmir, but see n. 2336 above. (18.18)

2351  This graphic picture of the sleepers explains the human mechanism by which their safety was ensured by Allah from their Pagan enemies. (18.18)

2352  This is the point of the story. Their own human impressions were to be compared, each with the other. They were to be made to see that with the best goodwill and the most honest enquiry they might reach different conclusions; that they were not to waste their time in vain controversies, but to get on to the main business of life; and that Allah alone had full knowledge of the things that seem to us so strange, or inconsistent, or inexplicable, or that produce different impressions on different minds. If they entered the Cave in the morning and woke up in the afternoon, one of them might well think they had been there only a few hours-only part of a day. This relative or fallacious impression of Time also gives us an inkling of the state when there will be no Time, of the Resurrection when all our little impressions of this life will be corrected by the final Reality. This mystery of time has puzzled many contemplative minds. Cf. "Dark time that haunts us with the briefness of our days" (Thomas Wolfe in "Of Time and the River"). (18.19)

2353  They now give up barren controversy and come to the practical business of life. But their thoughts are conditioned by the state of things that existed when they entered the Cave. The money they carried was the money coined in the reign of the monarch who persecuted the Religion of Unity and favoured the false cults of Paganism. (18.19)

2354  Best food:, i.e., purest, most wholesome, perhaps also most suitable for those who rejected idol worship, i.e., not dedicated to idols. For they still imagined the world in the same state in which they had known it before they entered the Cave. (18.19)

2355  They think that the world had not changed, and that the fierce persecution they knew. was still raging, under which a man had to pay by his life for his religious faith, if he could not conform to Pagan worship. (18.20)

2356  That is, never succeed in keeping your religion. To become a renegade, to give up the Truth which you have won, simply on account of the fear of men, is the most despicable form of cowardice, and would rightly close the door of salvation if strict justice were to be done. But even then Allah's Mercy comes to the coward's aid so long as the door of repentance is open. (18.20)

2357  Thus: in this way, by these means, i.e., by the sending out of one of the Sleepers with the old money to the town to buy provisions. His old-fashioned dress, appearance, and speech, and the old uncurrent money which he brought, at once drew the attention of people to him. When they learnt his story, they realised that Allah, Who can protect His servants thus and raise them up from sleep after such a long time, has power to raise up men for the Resurrection, and that His promise of goodness and mercy to those who serve Him is true and was exemplified in this striking way. On the other hand, to the men of the Cave themselves, it became clear that Allah can change the situation before we are aware, and our hope in Him is not futile, and that even when we are on the brink of despair, a revolution is surely working in the world before the world itself realises it. (18.21)

2358  The perversity of man is such that as soon as ever a glimpse of truth becomes manifest, men fall into controversies about it. The Sleepers could not judge about the duration of their stay in the Cave, but they wisely left the matter and attended to the urgent business of their lives. The townsfolk could not agree as to the significance of the event; they fell to discussing immaterial details. What sort of a memorial should they raise?-a house or a place of worship or a tablet? The place of worship was built. But the real significance was missed until explained in the Qur-an. (18.21)

2359  The controversy in after ages raged about the number of the Sleepers: were they three or five or seven? People answered, not from knowledge, but from conjecture. Gibbon's version, which has now become best known, makes the number of Sleepers seven. The point was immaterial: the real point was the spiritual lesson. (18.22)

2360  The true significance of the story is known only to a few. Most men discuss futile details, which are not in their knowledge. (18.22)

2361  It is unprofitable to enter such immaterial controversies and many others that have been waged about Religion by shallow men from time immemorial. Yet, if there is a matter of clear knowledge from experience that matters, we must openly proclaim it, that the world may be brought to listen to Allah's Truth. (18.22)

2362  Vulgar story-mongers as such know little of the true significance of stories and parables. We have a clear exposition in the Qur-an. What need is there to go into details of the number of men in the Cave, or of the time they remained there? (18.22)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

23   Nor say of anything "I shall be sure to do so and so tomorrow"

24   Without adding "So please Allah!" And call thy Lord to mind when thou forgettest and say "I hope that my Lord will guide me ever closer (even) than this to the right road." 2363 2364

25   So they stayed in their Cave three hundred years and (some) add nine (more). 2365

26   Say: "Allah knows best how long they stayed: with Him is (the knowledge of) the secrets of the heavens and the earth: how clearly He sees how finely He hears (everything)! They have no protector other than Him; nor does He share His Command with any person whatsoever. 2366 2367

27   And recite (and teach) what has been revealed to thee of the Book of thy Lord: none can change His Words and none wilt thou find as a refuge other than Him. 2368

28   And keep thy soul content with those who call on their Lord morning and evening seeking his Face; and let not thine eyes pass beyond them seeking the pomp and glitter of this Life; nor obey any whose heart We have permitted to neglect the remembrance of Us one who follows his own desires whose case has gone beyond all bounds. 2369 2370

29   Say "The Truth is from your Lord": let him who will believe and let him who will reject (it): for the wrongdoers We have prepared a Fire whose (smoke and flames) like the wall and roof of a tent will hem them in: if they implore relief they will be granted water like melted brass that will scald their faces.  How dreadful the drink! How uncomfortable a couch to recline on! 2371

30   As to those who believe and work righteousness verily We shall not suffer to perish the reward of any who do a (single) righteous deed. 2372

31   For them will be Gardens of Eternity; beneath them rivers will flow; they will be adorned therein with bracelets of gold and they will wear green garments of fine silk and heavy brocade; they will recline therein on raised thrones.  How good the recompense! How beautiful a couch to recline on! 2373 2374


Transliteration

Ayah 23   

Yusuf Ali           Nor say of anything "I shall be sure to do so and so tomorrow"

Transliteration   Wa la_ taqa_lanna lisyai'in inni fa_'ilun za_lika gada_(n),

Ayah 24   

Yusuf Ali           Without adding "So please Allah!" And call thy Lord to mind when thou forgettest and say "I hope that my Lord will guide me ever closer (even) than this to the right road." 

Transliteration   Illa_ ay yasya_'alla_h(u), wa-zkur rabbaka iza_ nasita wa qul 'asa_ ay yahdiyani rabbi li'aqraba min ha_za_ rasyada_(n).

Ayah 25   

Yusuf Ali           So they stayed in their Cave three hundred years and (some) add nine (more).

Transliteration   Wa labisu_ fi kahfihim sala_sa mi'atin sinina wa-zda_du_ tis'a_(n).

Ayah 26   

Yusuf Ali           Say: "Allah knows best how long they stayed: with Him is (the knowledge of) the secrets of the heavens and the earth: how clearly He sees how finely He hears (everything)! They have no protector other than Him; nor does He share His Command with any person whatsoever. 

Transliteration   Qulilla_hu a'lamu bima_ labisa_, lahu_ gaibus sama_wa_ti wal ard(i), absir bihi wa asmi', ma_ lahum min du_nihi miw waliyy(in), wa la_ yusyriku fi hukmihi  ahada_(n).

Ayah 27   

Yusuf Ali           And recite (and teach) what has been revealed to thee of the Book of thy Lord: none can change His Words and none wilt thou find as a refuge other than Him.

Transliteration   Wa-tlu ma_ u_hiya ilaika min kita_bi rabbik(a), la_ mubaddila likalima_tih(i), wa lan tajida min du_nihimultahada_(n).

Ayah 28   

Yusuf Ali           And keep thy soul content with those who call on their Lord morning and evening seeking his Face; and let not thine eyes pass beyond them seeking the pomp and glitter of this Life; nor obey any whose heart We have permitted to neglect the remembrance of Us one who follows his own desires whose case has gone beyond all bounds. 

Transliteration   Wa-sbir nafsaka ma'al lazina yad'u_na rabbahum bil gada_ti wal 'asyiyyi yurida_na wajhahu_ wa la_ ta'du 'aina_ka 'anhum, turidu zinatal haya_tid dunya_, wa la_ tuti' man agfalna_ qalbahu_ 'an zikrina_ wa-ttaba'a hawa_hu wa ka_na amruhu_ furuta_(n).

Ayah 29   

Yusuf Ali           Say "The Truth is from your Lord": let him who will believe and let him who will reject (it): for the wrongdoers We have prepared a Fire whose (smoke and flames) like the wall and roof of a tent will hem them in: if they implore relief they will be granted water like melted brass that will scald their faces.  How dreadful the drink! How uncomfortable a couch to recline on!

Transliteration   Wa qulil haqqu mir rabbikum, faman sya_'a falyu'miw wa man sya_'a falyakfur, inna_ a'tadna_ liz za_limina na_ra_(n), aha_ta bihim sura_diquha_, wa iy yastagisu_ yuga_su bi ma_'in kal muhli yasywil wuju_h(a), bi'sasy syara_b(u), wa sa_'at murtafaqa_(n).

Ayah 30   

Yusuf Ali           As to those who believe and work righteousness verily We shall not suffer to perish the reward of any who do a (single) righteous deed.

Transliteration   Innal lazina a_manu_ wa 'amilus sa_liha_ti inna_ la_ nudi'u ajra man ahsana  'amala_(n).

Ayah 31   

Yusuf Ali           For them will be Gardens of Eternity; beneath them rivers will flow; they will be adorned therein with bracelets of gold and they will wear green garments of fine silk and heavy brocade; they will recline therein on raised thrones.  How good the recompense! How beautiful a couch to recline on! 

Transliteration   Ula_'ika lahum janna_tu 'adnin tajri min tahtihimul anha_ru yuhallauna fiha_ min asa_wira min zahabiw wa yalbasu_na siya_ban khudram min sundusiw wa istabraqim muttaki'ina fiha_ 'alal ara_'ik(i), ni'massawa_b(u), wa hasunat murtafaqa_(n).


Notes

2363  Verses 23 and 24 are parenthetical. We must never rely upon our own resources so much as to forget Allah. If by any chance we do forget, we must come back to Him and keep Him in remembrance, as did the Companions of the Cave. (18.24)

2364  In geometry the perfect circle is an ideal. Any given circle that we draw is not so perfect that we cannot draw one closer to the ideal. So in our life, there is always the hope of drawing closer and closer to Allah. (18.24)

2365  This verse should be read with the next verse. In the floating oral tradition the duration of time in the Cave was given differently in different versions. When the tradition was reduced to writing, some Christian writers (e.g., Simeon Metaphrastes) named 372 years, some less. In round numbers 300 years in the solar Calendar would amount to 309 in the lunar Calendar. But the next verse points out that all these are mere conjectures: the number is known to Allah alone. The authority on which Gibbon relies mentions two definite reigns, that of Decius (249-251 A.D.) and that of Theodosius 11 (408-450 A.D.). Taking 250 and 450, we get an interval of 200 years. But the point of the story does not lie in the name of any given Emperor, but in the fact that the beginning of the period coincided with an Emperor who persecuted: the Emperor's name at the end of the period may be taken as approximately correct, because the story was recorded within two generations afterwards. One of the worst Emperors to persecute the Christians was Nero who reigned from 54 to 68. If we took the end of his reign (A.D. 68) as the initial point, and (say) 440 A.D. as the final point, we get the 372 years of Simeon Metaphrastes. But none of these writers knew any more than we do. Our best course is to follow the Quranic injunction, "Say, Allah knows best how long they stayed" (xviii. 26). There is also a rebuke implied: 'do not imitate these men who love mischievous controversies!' After all, we are given the narrative more as a parable than as a story. (18.25)

2366  Who are "they" in this sentence? They may be the Companions of the Cave, for they put themselves under the protection of Allah, and disowned all attribution of partners to Him. Or "they" may refer to the people in general who go wrong and become "Mushriks" i.e., attribute imaginary partners to Allah. (18.26)

2367  His Command: i.e., Allah's sovereignty of the world, or in His Judgment on the Day of Judgment. (18.26)

2368  His Words: His Commands, Decrees, Orders. (18.27)

2369  Cf. vi. 52 and n. 870. The true servants of Allah are those whose hearts are turned to Him morning, noon, and night, and who seek not worldly gain, but Allah's Grace, Allah's own Self, His Presence and nearness. Even if they are poor in this world's goods, their society gives far more inward and spiritual satisfaction than worldly grandeur or worldly attractions. (18.28)

2370  For those who stray from Allah's path, Allah's Grace is ever anxious: it seeks to reclaim them and bring them back to the path. If such a one resists, and follows his own lusts, a point is reached when his case becomes hopeless. Allah's Grace does not then reach him, and he is abandoned to his pride and insolence. Beware of following the example or advice of such a one or seeking his society, or hankering after his wretched idols. (18.28)

2371  Our choice in our limited Free-will involves a corresponding personal responsibility. We are offered the Truth: again and again is it pressed on our attention. If we reject it, we must take all the terrible consequences which are prefigured in the Fire of Hell. Its flames and roof will completely enclose us like a tent. Ordinarily there is water to quench the heat of thirst: here the only drink will be like molten brass, thick, heavy, burning, sizzling. Before it reaches the mouth of the unfortunates, drops of it will scald their faces as it is poured out. (18.29)

2372  The righteous will be rewarded, as has been said again and again, beyond their merits: xxviii. 84: xxx. 39. Not a single good deed of theirs will lose its reward, and the mercy of Allah will blot out their sins. (18.30)

2373  Heaven is figured by all the pictures of ease and comfort which we can imagine in our present state: Gardens: perpetual springs of crystal water, which we can see as in a landscape from above; the finest and most costly ornaments; the most beautiful clothes to wear; green is the colour mentioned, because it is the most refreshing to the eye, and fits in well with the Garden; the wearer takes the choice of fine silk or heavy brocade; and for rest and comfort, high thrones of dignity on which the blessed ones recline. (18.31)

2374  This picture is in parallel contrast to the picture of Misery in the last verse. (18.31)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

32   Set forth to them the parable of two men: for one of them We provided two gardens of grapevines and surrounded them with date-palms: in between the two We placed corn-fields. 2375

33   Each of those gardens brought forth its produce and failed not in the least therein: in the midst of them We caused a river to flow.

34   (Abundant) was the produce this man had: he said to his companion in the course of a mutual argument: "More wealth have I than you and more honor and power in (my following of) men." 2376

35   He went into his garden in a state (of mind) unjust to his soul: He said "I deem not that this will ever perish. 2377

36   "Nor do I deem that the Hour (of Judgment) will (ever) come: even if I am brought back to my Lord I shall surely find (there) something better in exchange." 2378

37   His companion said to him in the course of the argument with him: "Dost thou deny Him Who created thee out of dust then out of a sperm-drop then fashioned thee into a man? 2379

38   "But (I think) for my part that He is Allah my Lord and none shall I associate with my Lord.

39   "Why didst thou not as thou wentest into thy garden say: `Allah's Will (be done)! There is no power but with Allah!' If thou dost see me less than thee in wealth and sons 2380

40   "It may be that my Lord will give me something better than thy garden and that He will send on thy garden thunderbolts (by way of reckoning) from heaven making it (but) slippery sand!

41   "Or the water of the garden will run off underground so that thou wilt never be able to find it." 2381

42   So his fruits (and enjoyment) were encompassed (with ruin) and he remained twisting and turning his hands over what he had spent on his property which had (now) tumbled to pieces to its very foundations and he could only say "Woe is me! would I had never ascribed partners to my Lord and Cherisher!" 2382 2383

43   Nor had he numbers to help him against Allah nor was he able to deliver himself. 2384

44   There the (only) protection comes from Allah the True One.  He is the Best to reward and the Best to give success. 2385


Transliteration

Ayah 32   

Yusuf Ali           Set forth to them the parable of two men: for one of them We provided two gardens of grapevines and surrounded them with date-palms: in between the two We placed corn-fields.

Transliteration   Wa-drib lahum masalar  rajulaini ja'alna_ li'ahadihima_ jannataini min a'na_biw wa hafafna_huma_ bi nakhliw wa ja'alna_ bainahuma_ zar'a_(n).

Ayah 33   

Yusuf Ali           Each of those gardens brought forth its produce and failed not in the least therein: in the midst of them We caused a river to flow.

Transliteration   Kiltal jannataini a_tat ukulaha_ wa lam tazlim minhu syai'a_(w), wa fajjarna_ khila_lahuma_ nahara_(w),

Ayah 34   

Yusuf Ali           (Abundant) was the produce this man had: he said to his companion in the course of a mutual argument: "More wealth have I than you and more honor and power in (my following of) men."

Transliteration   Wa ka_na lahu_ samar(un), faqa_la lisa_hibihi wa huwa yuha_wiruhu_ ana aksaru minka ma_law wa a'azzu nafara_(n).

Ayah 35   

Yusuf Ali           He went into his garden in a state (of mind) unjust to his soul: He said "I deem not that this will ever perish.

Transliteration   Wa dakhala jannatahu_ wa huwa za_limul li nafsih(i), qa_la ma_ azunnu an tabida ha_zihi  abada_(w),

Ayah 36   

Yusuf Ali           "Nor do I deem that the Hour (of Judgment) will (ever) come: even if I am brought back to my Lord I shall surely find (there) something better in exchange."

Transliteration   Wa ma_ azunnus sa_'ata qa_'imataw wa la'ir rudittu ila_ rabbi la'ajidanna khairam minha_ munqalaba_(n).

Ayah 37   

Yusuf Ali           His companion said to him in the course of the argument with him: "Dost thou deny Him Who created thee out of dust then out of a sperm-drop then fashioned thee into a man?

Transliteration   Qa_la lahu_ sa_hibuhu_ wa huwa yuha_wiruhu_ akafarta billazi khalaqaka min tura_bin summa min nutfatin summa sawwa_ka rajula_(n).

Ayah 38   

Yusuf Ali           "But (I think) for my part that He is Allah my Lord and none shall I associate with my Lord.

Transliteration   La_kinna huwalla_hu rabbi wa la_ usyriku bi rabbi ahada_(n).

Ayah 39   

Yusuf Ali           "Why didst thou not as thou wentest into thy garden say: `Allah's Will (be done)! There is no power but with Allah!' If thou dost see me less than thee in wealth and sons

Transliteration   Wa lau la_ iz dakhalta jannataka qulta ma_ sya_'alla_h(u), la_ quwwata illa_ billa_h(i), in tarani ana aqalla minka ma_law wa walada_(n).

Ayah 40   

Yusuf Ali           "It may be that my Lord will give me something better than thy garden and that He will send on thy garden thunderbolts (by way of reckoning) from heaven making it (but) slippery sand!

Transliteration   Fa 'asa_ rabbi ay yu'tiyani khairam min jannatika wa yursila 'alaiha_ husba_nam minas sama_'i fatusbiha sa'idan zalaqa_(n).

Ayah 41   

Yusuf Ali           "Or the water of the garden will run off underground so that thou wilt never be able to find it."

Transliteration   Au yusbiha ma_'uha_ gauran falan tastati'a lahu_ talaba_(n).

Ayah 42   

Yusuf Ali           So his fruits (and enjoyment) were encompassed (with ruin) and he remained twisting and turning his hands over what he had spent on his property which had (now) tumbled to pieces to its very foundations and he could only say "Woe is me! would I had never ascribed partners to my Lord and Cherisher!" 

Transliteration   Wa uhita bi samarihi fa asbaha yuqallibu kaffaihi 'ala_ ma_ anfaqa fiha_ wa hiya kha_wiyatun 'ala_ 'uru_syiha_ wa yaqu_lu ya_ laitani lam usyrik bi rabbi ahada_(n).

Ayah 43   

Yusuf Ali           Nor had he numbers to help him against Allah nor was he able to deliver himself.

Transliteration   Wa lam takul lahu_ fi'atuy yansuru_nahu_ min du_nilla_hi wa ma_ ka_na muntasira_(n).

Ayah 44   

Yusuf Ali           There the (only) protection comes from Allah the True One.  He is the Best to reward and the Best to give success.

Transliteration   Huna_likal wala_yatu lilla_hil haqq(i), huwa khairun sawa_baw wa khairun 'uqba_(n).


Notes

2375  Here is a simple parable of the contrast between two men. One was purse-proud, and forgot that what he had was from Allah, by way of a trust and a trial in this life. The other boasted of nothing: his trust was in Allah. The worldly wealth of the first was destroyed, and he had nothing left. The second was the happier in the end. (18.32)

2376  The two men began to compare notes. The arrogant one was puffed up with his possessions, his income, and his large family and following, and thought in his self- complacency that it would last for ever. He was also wrong in looking down on his Companion, who, though less affluent, was the better man of the two. (18.34)

2377  It was not wealth that ruined him, but the attitude of his mind. He was unjust, not so much to his neighbour, as to his own soul. In his love of the material, he forgot or openly defied the spiritual. As verse 37 shows, he took his companion with him, to impress him with his own importance, but the companion was unmoved. (18.35)

2378  Here comes out the grasping spirit of the materialist. In his mind "better" means more wealth and more power, of the kind he was enjoying in this life, although in reality, even what he had, rested on hollow foundations and was doomed to perish and bring him down with it. (18.36)

2379  The three stages of man's creation: first dust, or clay, itself created out of nothing and forming the physical basis of his body; then, out of the produce of the earth as incorporated in the parents body, the sperm drop (with the corresponding receptive element), and then when the different elements were mixed in due proportion, and the soul was breathed into him, the fashioned man. Cf. lxxxvii. 2, and xv. 28-29. (18.37)

2380  The companion's argument divides itself into five parts. (1) He remonstrates against the proud man denying Allah. (2) He, from his own spiritual experience, proclaims that Allah is One and that He is good. (3) He points out to him the better way of enjoying Allah's gifts, with gratitude to Him. (4) He expresses contentment and satisfaction in Allah's dealings with him. (5) He gives a warning of the fleeting nature of this world's goods and the certainty of Allah's punishment for inordinate vanity. (18.39)

2381  The punishment was that of thunderbolts (husbanan), but the general meaning of the word includes any punishment by way of a reckoning (hisab), and I think that an earthquake is also implied, as it alters water-courses, diverts channels underground, throws up silt and sand, and covers large areas with ruin. (18.41)

2382  "Fruits", "spent" , "twisting of the hands", should all be understood in a wide metaphorical sense, as well as the literal sense. He had great income and satisfaction, which were all gone. What resources he had lavished on his property! His thoughts had been engrossed on it; his hopes had been built on it; it had become the absorbing passion of his life. If he had only looked to Allah, instead of to the ephemeral goods of this world! (18.42)

2383  In this case, in his mind, there was his own Self and his Mammon as rivals to Allah! (18.42)

2384  He had built up connections and obliged dependants, and was proud of having his "quiver full". But where were all things when the reckoning came? He could not help himself; how could others be expected to help him! (18.43)

2385  All else is vanity, uncertainty, the sport of Time. The only hope or truth is from Allah. Other rewards and other successes are illusory: the best Reward and the best Success come from Allah. (18.44)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

45   Set forth to them the similitude of the life of this world: it is like the rain which We send down from the skies: the earth's vegetation absorbs it but soon it becomes dry stubble which the winds do scatter: it is (only) Allah Who prevails over all things. 2386

46   Wealth and sons are allurements of the life of this world: but the things that endure Good Deeds are best in the sight of thy Lord as rewards and best as (the foundation for) hopes. 2387

47   One Day We shall remove the mountains and thou wilt see the earth as a level stretch and We shall gather them all together nor shall We leave out any one of them. 2388

48   And they will be marshalled before thy Lord in ranks (with the announcement) "Now have ye come to Us (bare) as We created you first: aye ye thought We shall not fulfil the appointment made to you to meet (Us)!": 2389 2390

49   And the Book (of Deeds) will be placed (before you); and thou wilt see the sinful in great terror because of what is (recorded) therein; they will say "Ah! woe to us! what a book is this! It leaves out nothing small or great but takes account thereof!" They will find all that they did placed before them: and not one will thy Lord treat with injustice. 2391


Transliteration

Ayah 45   

Yusuf Ali           Set forth to them the similitude of the life of this world: it is like the rain which We send down from the skies: the earth's vegetation absorbs it but soon it becomes dry stubble which the winds do scatter: it is (only) Allah Who prevails over all things.

Transliteration   Wa-drib lahum masalal haya_tid dunya_ kama_'in anzalna_hu minas sama_'i fa-khtalata bihi naba_tul ardi fa asbaha hasyiman tazru_hur riya_h(u), wa ka_nalla_hu 'ala_ kulli syai'im  muqtadira_(n).

Ayah 46   

Yusuf Ali           Wealth and sons are allurements of the life of this world: but the things that endure Good Deeds are best in the sight of thy Lord as rewards and best as (the foundation for) hopes.

Transliteration   Al ma_lu wal banu_na zinatul haya_tid dunya_, wal ba_qiya_tus sa_liha_tu khairun 'inda rabbika sawa_baw wa khairun amala_(n).

Ayah 47   

Yusuf Ali           One Day We shall remove the mountains and thou wilt see the earth as a level stretch and We shall gather them all together nor shall We leave out any one of them.

Transliteration   Wa yauma nusayyirul jiba_la wa taral arda ba_rizataw wa hasyarna_hum falam nuga_dir minhum ahada_(n).

Ayah 48   

Yusuf Ali           And they will be marshalled before thy Lord in ranks (with the announcement) "Now have ye come to Us (bare) as We created you first: aye ye thought We shall not fulfil the appointment made to you to meet (Us)!": 

Transliteration   Wa 'uridu_ 'ala_ rabbika saffa_(n), laqad ji'tumu_na_ kama_ khalaqna_kum awwala marrah(tim), bal za'amtum allan naj'ala lakum mau'ida_(n).

Ayah 49   

Yusuf Ali           And the Book (of Deeds) will be placed (before you); and thou wilt see the sinful in great terror because of what is (recorded) therein; they will say "Ah! woe to us! what a book is this! It leaves out nothing small or great but takes account thereof!" They will find all that they did placed before them: and not one will thy Lord treat with injustice.

Transliteration   Wa wudi'al kita_bu fataral mujrimina musyfiqina mimma_ fihi wa yaqu_lu_na ya_  wailatana_ ma_li ha_zal kita_bi la_ yuga_diru sagirataw wa la_ kabiratan illa_ ahsa_ha_, wa wajadu_ ma_ 'amilu_ ha_dira_(n), wa la_ yazlimu rabbuka ahada_(n).


Notes

2386  Rain-water is a good thing in itself, but it does not last, and you can build no solid foundations on it. It is soon absorbed in the earth, and produces the flourishing appearance of grass and vegetation-for a time. Soon these decay, and become as dry stubble, which the least wind from any quarter will blow about like a thing of no importance. The water is gone, and so is the vegetation to which it lent a brave show of luxuriance temporarily. Such is the life of this world, contrasted with the inner and real Life, which looks to the Hereafter-Allah is the only enduring Power we can look to, supreme over all. (18.45)

2387  Other things are fleeting: but Good Deeds have a lasting value in the sight of Allah. They are best as (or for) rewards in two ways: (1) they flow from us by the Grace of Allah, and are themselves rewards for our Faith: (2) they become the foundation of our hopes for the highest rewards in the Hereafter. (18.46)

2388  On the Day of Judgment none of our present landmarks will remain. (18.47)

2389  We shall stand as we were created, with none of the adventitious possessions that we collected in this life, which will all have vanished. (18.48)

2390  The sceptics will now at length be convinced of the Reality which will be upon them. (18.48)

2391  Personal responsibility, for all deeds in this life will then be enforced. But it will be done with perfect justice. Expressed in the forms of this world, it will amount to a clear statement of all we did in this life; the record will be put before us to convince us. As it will be a perfect record, with no omissions and no wrong entries, it will be perfectly convincing. Where there is punishment, it has been earned by the wrong-doer's own deeds, not imposed on him unjustly. (18.49)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

50   Behold! We said to the angels "Bow down to Adam": they bowed down except Iblis.  He was one of the Jinns and he broke the Command of his Lord.  Will ye then take him and his progeny as protectors rather than Me? And they are enemies to you! Evil would be the exchange for the wrongdoers! 2392 2393 2394 2395

51   I called them not to witness the creation of the heavens and the earth nor (even) their own creation: nor is it for Me to take as helpers such as lead (men) astray! 2396

52   One Day He will say "Call on those whom ye thought to be My partners" and they will call on them but they will not listen to them; and We shall make for them a place of common perdition. 2397

53   And the Sinful shall see the Fire and apprehend that they have to all therein; no means will they find to turn away therefrom.


Transliteration

Ayah 50   

Yusuf Ali           Behold! We said to the angels "Bow down to Adam": they bowed down except Iblis.  He was one of the Jinns and he broke the Command of his Lord.  Will ye then take him and his progeny as protectors rather than Me? And they are enemies to you! Evil would be the exchange for the wrongdoers!   

Transliteration   Wa iz qulna_ lil mala_'ikati-sjudu_ li'a_dama fasajadu_ illa_ iblis(a), ka_na minal jinni fafasaqa 'an amri rabbih(i), afatattakhizu_nahu_ wa zurriyyatahu_ auliya_'a min du_ni wa hum lakum 'aduww(un), bi'sa liz za_limina badala_(n).

Ayah 51   

Yusuf Ali           I called them not to witness the creation of the heavens and the earth nor (even) their own creation: nor is it for Me to take as helpers such as lead (men) astray!

Transliteration   Ma_ asyhattuhum khalqas sama_wa_ti wal ardi wa la_ khalqa anfusihim, wa ma_  kuntu muttakhizal mudillina 'aduda_(n).

Ayah 52   

Yusuf Ali           One Day He will say "Call on those whom ye thought to be My partners" and they will call on them but they will not listen to them; and We shall make for them a place of common perdition.

Transliteration   Wa yauma yaqu_lu na_du_ syuraka_'iyal lazina za'amtum fa da'auhum falam yastajibu_ lahum wa ja'alna_ bainahum maubiqa_(n).

Ayah 53   

Yusuf Ali           And the Sinful shall see the Fire and apprehend that they have to all therein; no means will they find to turn away therefrom.

Transliteration   Wa ra'al mujrimu_nan na_ra fa zannu_ annahum muwa_qi'uha_ wa  lam yajidu_ 'anha_ masrifa_(n).


Notes

2392  Cf. ii. 34, where the story is told of the fall of mankind through Adam. Here the point is referred to in order to bring home the individual responsibility of the erring soul. Iblis is your enemy; you have been told his history; will you prefer to go to him rather than to the merciful Allah, your Creator and Cherisher? What a false exchange you would make!' (18.50)

2393  Cf. vi. 100, n. 929. (18.50)

2394  Satan's progeny: we need not take the epithet only in a literal sense. All his followers are also his progeny. (18.50)

2395  Out of the limited free-will that man has, if he were to choose Evil instead of Good, Satan instead of Allah, what a dreadful choice it would be! It would really be an evil exchange. For man is Allah's creature, cared for and cherished by Him. He abandons his Cherisher to become the slave of his enemy! (18.50)

2396  Allah wants man's good: how can He take Evil for His partner? (18.51)

2397  Some Commentators construe: "And We shall make a partition between them": i.e., the Evil ones will not even be seen by their misguided followers, much as the latter may go on calling on them. (18.52)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

54   We have explained in detail in this Qur'an for the benefit of mankind every kind of similitude: but man is in most things contentious. 2398

55   And what is there to keep back men from believing now that Guidance has come to them nor from praying for forgiveness from their Lord but that (they ask that) the ways of the ancients be repeated with them or the Wrath be brought to them face to face? 2399

56   We only send the Apostles to give glad tidings and to give warnings: but the Unbelievers dispute with vain argument in order therewith to weaken the truth and they treat My Signs as a jest as also the fact that they are warned! 2400

57   And who doth more wrong than one who is reminded of the Signs of his Lord but turns away from them forgetting the (deeds) which his hands have sent forth? Verily We have set veils over their hearts lest they should understand this and over their ears deafness.  If thou callest them to guidance even then will they never accept guidance. 2401

58   But your Lord is Most Forgiving Full of Mercy.  If He were to call them (at once) to account for what they have earned then surely He would have hastened their Punishment: but they have their appointed time beyond which they will find no refuge. 2402

59   Such were the populations We destroyed when they committed iniquities; but We fixed an appointed time for their destruction. 2403


Transliteration

Ayah 54   

Yusuf Ali           We have explained in detail in this Qur'an for the benefit of mankind every kind of similitude: but man is in most things contentious.

Transliteration   Wa laqad sarrafna_ fi ha_zal qur'a_ni lin na_si min kulli masal(in), wa ka_nal insa_nu aksara syai'in jadala_(n).

Ayah 55   

Yusuf Ali           And what is there to keep back men from believing now that Guidance has come to them nor from praying for forgiveness from their Lord but that (they ask that) the ways of the ancients be repeated with them or the Wrath be brought to them face to face?

Transliteration   Wa ma_ mana'an na_sa ay yu'minu_ iz ja_'ahumul huda_ wa yastagfiru_ rabbahum illa_ ay ta'tiyahum sunnatul awwalina  au ya'tiyahumul 'azu_bu qubula_(n).

Ayah 56   

Yusuf Ali           We only send the Apostles to give glad tidings and to give warnings: but the Unbelievers dispute with vain argument in order therewith to weaken the truth and they treat My Signs as a jest as also the fact that they are warned!

Transliteration   Wa ma_ nursilul mursalina illa_ mubasysyirina wa munzirin(a), wa yuja_dilul  lazina kafaru_ bil ba_tili liyudhidu_ bihil haqqa wa-ttakhazu_ a_ya_ti wa ma_ unziru_ huzuwa_(n).

Ayah 57   

Yusuf Ali           And who doth more wrong than one who is reminded of the Signs of his Lord but turns away from them forgetting the (deeds) which his hands have sent forth? Verily We have set veils over their hearts lest they should understand this and over their ears deafness.  If thou callest them to guidance even then will they never accept guidance.

Transliteration   Wa man azlamu mim man zukkira bi a_ya_ti rabbihi fa a'rada 'anha_ wa nasiya ma_ qaddamat yada_h(u), inna_ ja'alna_ 'ala_ qulu_bihim akinnatan ay yafqahu_hu wa fi a_za_nihim waqra_(n), wa in tad'uhum ilal huda_ falay yahtada_ izan abada_(n).

Ayah 58   

Yusuf Ali           But your Lord is Most Forgiving Full of Mercy.  If He were to call them (at once) to account for what they have earned then surely He would have hastened their Punishment: but they have their appointed time beyond which they will find no refuge.

Transliteration   Wa rabbukal gafu_ru zur rahmah(ti), lau yu'a_khizuhum bima_ kasabu_ la'ajjala lahumul 'aza_b(a), bal lahum mau'idul lay yajidu_ min du_nihi mau'ila_(n).

Ayah 59   

Yusuf Ali           Such were the populations We destroyed when they committed iniquities; but We fixed an appointed time for their destruction.

Transliteration   Wa tilkal qura_ ahlakna_hum  lamma_ zalamu_ wa ja'alna_ limahlikihim mau'ida_(n).


Notes

2398  If men had not cultivated the habit of contention and obstinacy, they would have found that the parables and similitudes of Scripture had fully met their difficulties, and they would gladly have obeyed the call of Allah. (18.54)

2399  But man's obstinacy or contrariness asks or calls for a repetition of what happened to the wicked and those who rejected Faith in ancient times. Out of curiosity, or by way of challenge, they seem to court the Punishment and ask that it be brought to pass at once. But it will come soon enough, and then they will think it too early! Cf. xiii. 6 and n. 1810. (18.55)

2400  The Prophets of Allah are not sent to humour us with dialectics or satisfy the vulgar curiosity for miracles or dark unusual things. There is no "crookedness" (xviii. 1) in their preaching. They come to preach the Truth,-not in an abstract way, but with special reference to our conduct. They give us the good news of salvation lest we despair in the presence of Sin, and to warn us clearly of the dangers of Evil. Vain controversies about words only weaken their mission, or turn it into ridicule. The ungodly have a trick also of treating the earnest preaching to them itself as a jest and ridiculing it. (18.56)

2401  Considering the power of sin, and how it gets hold of the hearts of men, and considering all the wrongs that men have done, it is the height of folly and injustice on their part to turn away from warnings which are given expressly for their good. But a stage of callousness is reached, when, by their own choice, they have rendered themselves impervious to Allah's Grace. At that stage a veil is put over their hearts and they are left alone for a time, that they may commune with themselves and perhaps repent and seek Allah's Mercy again. If they do not, it is their own loss. See next verse. (18.57)

2402  Min duni-hi: should we take the pronoun to refer to "the appointed time" or to "your Lord" mentioned at the beginning of the verse? Most Commentators take the former view, and I have translated accordingly. But I agree with those who take the latter view, and the better translation would be: "But they have their appointed time, and except with Allah, they will find no refuge." That means that even during the period allowed them, when they are left to wander astray as they have rejected Allah's Grace, Allah's Mercy is open to them if they will repent and return; but nothing but Allah's Mercy can save them. (18.58)

2403  The instances of exemplary Punishment in former times were also subject to this rule, that Allah gives plenty of rope to the wicked, in case they might turn, repent, and obtain His Mercy. (18.59)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

60   Behold Moses said to his attendant "I will not give up until I reach the junction of the two seas or (until) I spend years and years in travel." 2404 2405 2406

61   But when they reached the Junction they forgot (about) their Fish which took its course through the sea (straight) as in a tunnel. 2407 2408

62   When they had passed on (some distance) Moses said to his attendant: "Bring us our early meal; truly we have suffered much fatigue at this (stage of) our journey." 2409

63   He replied: "Sawest thou (what happened) when we betook ourselves to the rock? I did indeed forget (about) the Fish: none but Satan made me forget to tell (you) about it: it took its course through the sea in a marvelous way!" 2410

64   Moses said: "That was what we were seeking after": so they went back on their footsteps following (the path they had come).

65   So they found one of Our servants on whom We had bestowed Mercy from Ourselves and whom We had taught knowledge from Our own presence. 2411 2412

66   Moses said to him: "May I follow thee on the footing that thou teach me something of the (Higher) Truth which thou hast been taught?" 2413

67   (The other) said: "Verily thou wilt not be able to have patience with me! 2414

68   "And how canst thou have patience about things about which thy understanding is not complete?" 2415

69   Moses said: "Thou wilt find me if Allah so will (truly) patient: nor shall I disobey thee in aught." 2416

70   The other said: "If then thou wouldst follow me ask me no questions about anything until I myself speak to thee concerning it."


Transliteration

Ayah 60   

Yusuf Ali           Behold Moses said to his attendant "I will not give up until I reach the junction of the two seas or (until) I spend years and years in travel."  

Transliteration   Wa iz qa_la mu_sa_ lifata_hu la_ abrahu hatta_ abluga majma'al bahraini au amdiya  huquba_(n).

Ayah 61   

Yusuf Ali           But when they reached the Junction they forgot (about) their Fish which took its course through the sea (straight) as in a tunnel. 

Transliteration   Falamma_ balaga majma'a bainihima_ nasiya_ hu_tahuma_ fa-ttakhaza sabilahu_ fil bahri saraba_(n).

Ayah 62   

Yusuf Ali           When they had passed on (some distance) Moses said to his attendant: "Bring us our early meal; truly we have suffered much fatigue at this (stage of) our journey."

Transliteration   Falamma_ ja_waza_ qa_la lifata_hu a_tina_ gada_'ana_, laqad laqina_ min safarina_ ha_za_ nasaba_(n).

Ayah 63   

Yusuf Ali           He replied: "Sawest thou (what happened) when we betook ourselves to the rock? I did indeed forget (about) the Fish: none but Satan made me forget to tell (you) about it: it took its course through the sea in a marvelous way!"

Transliteration   Qa_ ara'aita iz awaina_ ilas sakhrati fa inni nasitul hu_t(a), wa ma_ ansa_nihu illasy syaita_nu anazkurah(u_), wa-ttakhaza  sabilahu_ fil bahri 'ajaba_(n).

Ayah 64   

Yusuf Ali           Moses said: "That was what we were seeking after": so they went back on their footsteps following (the path they had come).

Transliteration   Qa_la za_lika ma_ kunna_  nabg(i), fa-rtadda 'ala_ a_sa_rihima_ qasasa_(n),

Ayah 65   

Yusuf Ali           So they found one of Our servants on whom We had bestowed Mercy from Ourselves and whom We had taught knowledge from Our own presence. 

Transliteration   Fa wajada_ 'abdam min'iba_dina_ a_taina_hu rahmatam min 'indina_ wa 'allamna_hu mil ladunna_ 'ilma_(n).

Ayah 66   

Yusuf Ali           Moses said to him: "May I follow thee on the footing that thou teach me something of the (Higher) Truth which thou hast been taught?"

Transliteration   Qa_la lahu_ mu_sa_ hal  attabi'uka 'ala_ an tu'allimani mimma_ 'ullimta rusyda_(n).

Ayah 67   

Yusuf Ali           (The other) said: "Verily thou wilt not be able to have patience with me!

Transliteration   Qa_la innaka lan tastati'a ma'iya sabra_(n).

Ayah 68   

Yusuf Ali           "And how canst thou have patience about things about which thy understanding is not complete?"

Transliteration   Wa kaifa tasbiru 'ala_ ma_ lam tuhit bihi khubra_(n).

Ayah 69   

Yusuf Ali           Moses said: "Thou wilt find me if Allah so will (truly) patient: nor shall I disobey thee in aught."

Transliteration   Qa_la satajiduni in sya_'alla_hu sa_biraw wa la_ a'si laka amra_(n).

Ayah 70   

Yusuf Ali           The other said: "If then thou wouldst follow me ask me no questions about anything until I myself speak to thee concerning it."

Transliteration   Qa_la fa in-ittaba'tani fala_ tas'alni 'an syai'in hatta_ uhdisa laka minhu zikra_(n).


Notes

2404  This episode in the story of Moses is meant to illustrate four points. (1) Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians. Even so that wisdom did not comprehend everything, even as the whole stock of the knowledge of the present day, in the sciences and the arts, and in literature, (if it could be supposed to be gathered in one individual), does not include all knowledge. Divine knowledge, as far as man is concerned, is unlimited. Even after Moses received his divine mission, his knowledge was not so perfect that it could not receive further additions. (2) Constant effort is necessary to keep our knowledge square with the march of time, and such effort Moses is shown to be making. (3) The mysterious man he meets (xviii. 65 and n. 2411), to whom Tradition assigns the name of Khidhr (literally, Green), is the type of that knowledge which is ever in contact with life as it is actually lived. (4) There are paradoxes in life; apparent loss may be real gain; apparent cruelty may be real mercy; returning good for evil may really be justice and not generosity (xviii. 79-82). Allah's wisdom transcends all human calculation. (18.60)

2405  The most probable geographical location (if any is required in a story that is a parable) is where the two arms of the Red Sea join together, viz., the Gulf of 'Aqaba and the Gulf of Suez. They enclose the Sinai Peninsula, in which Moses and the Israelites spent many years in their wanderings. (18.60)

2406  Huqub means a long but indefinite space of time. Sometimes it is limited to 80 years. (18.60)

2407  literally, 'the Junction of (the space) between the two,' i.e., the point at which the two seas were united. (18.61)

2408  Moses was to go and find a servant of Allah, who would instruct him in such knowledge as he had not already got. He was to take a fish with him. The place where he was to meet his mysterious Teacher would be indicated by the fact that the fish would disappear when he got to that place. (18.61)

2409  When they came to the Junction of the Seas, Moses forgot about the fish, and his attendant forgot to tell him of the fact that he had seen the fish escaping into the sea in a marvellous way. They passed on, but the stages now became heavier and heavier, and more fatiguing to Moses. (18.62)

2410  The attendant actually saw the fish swimming away in the sea, and yet "forgot" to tell his master. In his case the "forgetting" was more than forgetting. Inertia had made him refrain from telling the important news. In such matters inertia is almost as bad as active spite, the suggestion of Satan. (18.63)

2411  One of Our servants: his name is not mentioned in the Qur-an, but Tradition gives it as Khidhr. Round him have gathered a number of picturesque folk tales, with which we are not here concerned. "Khidhr" means "Green": his knowledge is fresh and green, and drawn out of the living sources of life for it is drawn from Allah's own Knowledge. He is a mysterious being, who has to be sought out. He has the secrets of some of the paradoxes of Life, which ordinary people do not understand, or understand in a wrong sense, as we shall see further on. The nearest equivalent figure in the literature of the People of the Book is Melchizedek or Melchisedek (the Greek form in the New Testament). In Gen. xiv. 18-20, he appears as king of Salem, priest of the Most High God: he blesses Abraham, and Abraham gives him tithes. (18.65)

2412  Khidhr had two special gifts from Allah: (1) Mercy from Him, and (2) Knowledge from Him too. The first freed him from the ordinary incidents of daily human life; and the second entitied him to interpret the inner meaning and mystery of events, as we shall see further on. (18.65)

2413  Moses, not understanding the full import of what he was asking, makes a simple request. He wants to learn something of the special Knowledge which Allah had bestowed on Khidhr. (18.66)

2414  Khidhr smiles, and says that there will be many things which Moses will see with him, which Moses will not completely understand and which will make Moses impatient. The highest knowledge often seems paradoxical to those who have not the key to it. (18.67)

2415  Khidhr does not blame Moses. Each one of us can only follow our own imperfect lights to the best of our judgment, but if we have Faith, we are saved many false steps. (18.68)

2416  Moses has Faith. He adopts the true attitude of the learner to the Teacher, and promises to obey in all things, with the help of Allah. The Teacher is doubtful, but permits him to follow him on condition that he asks no questions about anything until the Teacher himself mentions it first. (18.69)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

71   So they both proceeded: until when they were in the boat he scuttled it.  Said Moses: "Hast thou scuttled it in order to drown those in it? Truly a strange thing hast thou done!" 2417

72   He answered: "Did I not tell thee that thou canst have no patience with me?"

73   Moses said: "Rebuke me not for forgetting nor grieve me by raising difficulties in my case."

74   Then they proceeded: until when they met a young man he slew him. Moses said: "Hast thou slain an innocent person who had slain none? Truly a foul (unheard-of) thing hast thou done!" 2418

75   He answered: "Did I not tell thee that thou canst have no patience with me?"

76   (Moses) said: "If ever I ask thee about anything after this keep me not in thy company: then wouldst thou have received (full) excuse from my side."

77   Then they proceeded: until when they came to the inhabitants of a town they asked them for food but they refused them hospitality. They found there a wall on the point of falling down but he set it up straight.  (Moses) said: "If thou hadst wished surely thou couldst have exacted some recompense for it!" 2419 2420

78   He answered: "This is the parting between me and thee: now will I tell thee the interpretation of (those things) over which thou wast unable to hold patience. 2421

79   As for the boat it belonged to certain men in dire want: they plied on the water: I but wished to render it unserviceable for there was after them a certain king who seized on every boat by force. 2422

80   "As for the youth his parents were people of Faith and we feared that he would grieve them by obstinate rebellion and ingratitude (to Allah and man). 2423

81   "So we desired that their Lord would give them in exchange (a son) better in purity (of conduct) and closer in affection. 2424

82   "As for the wall it belonged to two youths orphans in the Town; there was beneath it a buried treasure to which they were entitled: their father had been a righteous man: so thy Lord desired that they should attain their age of full strength and get out their treasure  a mercy (and favor) from thy Lord.  I did it not of my own accord. Such is the interpretation of (those things) over which thou wast unable to hold patience." 2425 2426 2427


Transliteration

Ayah 71   

Yusuf Ali           So they both proceeded: until when they were in the boat he scuttled it.  Said Moses: "Hast thou scuttled it in order to drown those in it? Truly a strange thing hast thou done!"

Transliteration   Fa-ntalaqa_, hatta_ iza_ rakiba_ fis safinati kharaqaha_, qa_la akharaqtaha_ litugriqa ahlaha_, laqad ji'ta syai'an  imra_(n).

Ayah 72   

Yusuf Ali           He answered: "Did I not tell thee that thou canst have no patience with me?"

Transliteration   Qa_la alam aqul innaka lan tastati'a ma'iya sabra_(n).

Ayah 73   

Yusuf Ali           Moses said: "Rebuke me not for forgetting nor grieve me by raising difficulties in my case."

Transliteration   Qa_la la_ tu'a_khizni bima_  nasitu wa la_ turhiqni min amri 'usra_(n).

Ayah 74   

Yusuf Ali           Then they proceeded: until when they met a young man he slew him. Moses said: "Hast thou slain an innocent person who had slain none? Truly a foul (unheard-of) thing hast thou done!"

Transliteration   Fa-ntalaqa_, hatta_ iza_ laqiya_ gula_man faqatalah(u_), qa_la aqatalta nafsan zakiyyatam bi gairi nafs(in), laqad ji'ta syai'an nukra_(n).

Ayah 75   

Yusuf Ali           He answered: "Did I not tell thee that thou canst have no patience with me?"

Transliteration   Qa_la alam aqul laka in naka lan tastati'a ma'iya sabra_

Ayah 76   

Yusuf Ali           (Moses) said: "If ever I ask thee about anything after this keep me not in thy company: then wouldst thou have received (full) excuse from my side."

Transliteration   Qa_la in sa altuka 'an sai im ba'daha_ fala_ tusha_hibni qad balaghta mil ladun ni 'udzra_

Ayah 77   

Yusuf Ali           Then they proceeded: until when they came to the inhabitants of a town they asked them for food but they refused them hospitality. They found there a wall on the point of falling down but he set it up straight.  (Moses) said: "If thou hadst wished surely thou couldst have exacted some recompense for it!" 

Transliteration   Fanthalaqa_ hat ta_ iza_ ataya_ ahla qaryatinis tat'ama_ ahlaha_ fa abau ay yudhay yifu_huma_ fawajada_ fiha_ jida_ray yuridu ay yanqad dafa aqa_mah qa_la lau syi'ta lat takhazta 'alaihi ajra_

Ayah 78   

Yusuf Ali           He answered: "This is the parting between me and thee: now will I tell thee the interpretation of (those things) over which thou wast unable to hold patience.

Transliteration   Qa_la ha_za_ fira_qu baini wa bainik sa unab bi uka bita wili ma_ lam tasti 'alaihi shabra_

Ayah 79   

Yusuf Ali           As for the boat it belonged to certain men in dire want: they plied on the water: I but wished to render it unserviceable for there was after them a certain king who seized on every boat by force.

Transliteration   Am mas safinatu faka_nat limasa_kina ya'malu_na fil bahri fa aratu an a'ibaha_ wa ka_na wara_ ahum ma likuy ya'khudzu kul la safinatin gasba_

Ayah 80   

Yusuf Ali           "As for the youth his parents were people of Faith and we feared that he would grieve them by obstinate rebellion and ingratitude (to Allah and man).

Transliteration   Wa am mal gula_mu faka_na abawa_hu mu'minaini fakhasyina_ ay yurhi qahuma_ thughya_naw wa kufra_

Ayah 81   

Yusuf Ali           "So we desired that their Lord would give them in exchange (a son) better in purity (of conduct) and closer in affection.

Transliteration   Fa aradna_ ay yubdilahuma_ rab buhuma_ khairam minhu zaka_taw wa aqraba ruhma_

Ayah 82   

Yusuf Ali           "As for the wall it belonged to two youths orphans in the Town; there was beneath it a buried treasure to which they were entitled: their father had been a righteous man: so thy Lord desired that they should attain their age of full strength and get out their treasure  a mercy (and favor) from thy Lord.  I did it not of my own accord. Such is the interpretation of (those things) over which thou wast unable to hold patience."  

Transliteration   Wa am mal jida_ru faka_na lighula_maini yatimaini fil madinati wa ka_na tahtahu_ kanzul lahuma_ wa ka_na abu_huma_ sa_liha_ fa ara_da rabbuka ay yablugha_ asyud dahuma_ wa yastakhrija_ kanzahuma_ rahmatam mir rab bik wa ma_ fa'altuhu_ an amri za_lika ta'wilu ma_ lam tasti 'alaihi sabra_


Notes

2417  The explanation follows in xviii. 79. (18.71)

2418  The explanation follows in xviii. 80-81. (18.74)

2419  The inhabitants were churlish. They broke the universal Eastern rule of hospitality to strangers, and thus showed themselves beyond the pale of ordinary human courtesies. Note that they would have been expected to offer hospitality of themselves, unasked. Here Moses and his companion actually had to ask for hospitality and were refused point-blank. (18.77)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

83   They ask thee concerning Zul-qarnain.  Say "I will rehearse to you something of his story." 2428

84   Verily We established his power on earth and We gave him the ways and the means to all ends. 2429

85   One (such) way he followed

86   Until when he reached the setting of the sun He found it set in a spring of murky water: near it he found a People: We said: "O Zul-qarnain! (thou hast authority) either to punish them or to treat them with kindness." 2430 2431

87   He said: "Whoever doth wrong him shall we punish; then shall he be sent back to his Lord; and He will punish him with a punishment unheard-of (before). 2432

88   "But whoever believes and works righteousness he shall have a goodly reward and easy will be his task as we order it by our command." 2433

89   Then followed he (another) way.

90   Until when he came to the rising of the sun he found it rising on a people for whom We had provided no covering protection against the sun. 2434 2435

91   (He left them) as they were: We completely understood what was before him. 2436

92   Then followed he (another) way

93   Until when he reached (a tract) between two mountains he found beneath them a people who scarcely understood a word. 2437 2438

94   They said: "O Zul-qarnain! the Gog and Magog (people) do great mischief on earth: shall we then render thee tribute in order that thou mightest erect a barrier between us and them?" 2439

95   He said: "(The power) in which my Lord has established me is better (than tribute): help me therefore with strength (and labor): I will erect a strong barrier between you and them: 2440

96   "Bring me blocks of iron." At length when he had filled up the space between the two steep mountain sides he said "Blow (with your bellows)." Then when he had made it (red) as fire he said: "Bring me that I may pour over it molten lead." 2441 2442

97   Thus were they made powerless to scale it or to dig through it. 2443

98   He said: "This is a mercy from my Lord: but when the promise of my Lord comes to pass He will make it into dust; and the promise of My Lord is true." 2444

99   On that day We shall leave them to surge like waves on one another; the trumpet will be blown and We shall collect them all together. 2445

100 And We shall present Hell that day for Unbelievers to see all spread out 2446

101 (Unbelievers) whose eyes had been under a veil from Remembrance of Me and who had been unable even to hear. 2447


Transliteration

Ayah 83   

Yusuf Ali           They ask thee concerning Zul-qarnain.  Say "I will rehearse to you something of his story."

Transliteration   Wa yas alu_naka 'an dzil qarnain qul sa atlu_ alaikum minhu zikra_

Ayah 84   

Yusuf Ali           Verily We established his power on earth and We gave him the ways and the means to all ends.

Transliteration   In na_ mak kan na_ lahu_ fil ardi wa a_taina_hu min kul li sai in sababa_

Ayah 85   

Yusuf Ali           One (such) way he followed

Transliteration   Fa atba'a sababa_

Ayah 86   

Yusuf Ali           Until when he reached the setting of the sun He found it set in a spring of murky water: near it he found a People: We said: "O Zul-qarnain! (thou hast authority) either to punish them or to treat them with kindness." 

Transliteration   Hat ta_ iza_ balagha magribas samsi wajadaha_ taghrubu fi ainin hami atiw wa wajada 'indaha_ qauma_ qulna_ ya_ zal qarnaini im ma_ an tu'az ziba wa im ma_ an tat takhiza fihim husna_

Ayah 87   

Yusuf Ali           He said: "Whoever doth wrong him shall we punish; then shall he be sent back to his Lord; and He will punish him with a punishment unheard-of (before).

Transliteration   Qa_la am ma_ man zalama fasaufa nu'az zibuhu_ sum ma yurad du ila_ rab bihi fayu'az zibuhu_ aza_ban nukra_

Ayah 88   

Yusuf Ali           "But whoever believes and works righteousness he shall have a goodly reward and easy will be his task as we order it by our command."

Transliteration   Wa am ma_ man a_mana wa amila sha_lihan falahu_ jaza_ anil husna_ wa sanaqu_lu lahu_ min amrina_ yusra_

Ayah 89   

Yusuf Ali           Then followed he (another) way.

Transliteration   Sum ma atba'a sababa_

Ayah 90   

Yusuf Ali           Until when he came to the rising of the sun he found it rising on a people for whom We had provided no covering protection against the sun. 

Transliteration   Hat ta_ iza_ balagha mathli'as samsi wajadaha_ tathlu'u ala_ qaumil lamnaj'al lahum min du_niha_ sitra_

Ayah 91   

Yusuf Ali           (He left them) as they were: We completely understood what was before him.

Transliteration   Kaza_lik wa qad ahathna_ bima_ ladaihi khubra_

Ayah 92   

Yusuf Ali           Then followed he (another) way

Transliteration   Sum ma atba'a sababa_

Ayah 93   

Yusuf Ali           Until when he reached (a tract) between two mountains he found beneath them a people who scarcely understood a word. 

Transliteration   Hat ta_ iza_ balagha bainas sad daini wajada min du_nihima_ qaumal la_ yaka_du_na yafqahu_na qaula_

Ayah 94   

Yusuf Ali           They said: "O Zul-qarnain! the Gog and Magog (people) do great mischief on earth: shall we then render thee tribute in order that thou mightest erect a barrier between us and them?"

Transliteration   Qa_lu_ ya_ zal qarnaini in na yaju_ja wa ma'ju_ja mufsidu_na fil ardi fahal naj'alu laka kharjan 'ala_ an taj'ala bainana_ wa bainahum sad da_

Ayah 95   

Yusuf Ali           He said: "(The power) in which my Lord has established me is better (than tribute): help me therefore with strength (and labor): I will erect a strong barrier between you and them:

Transliteration   Qa_la ma_ mak kan ni fihi rab bi khairun fa a'inu_ni biquw watin aj'al bainakum wa bainahum radma_

Ayah 96   

Yusuf Ali           "Bring me blocks of iron." At length when he had filled up the space between the two steep mountain sides he said "Blow (with your bellows)." Then when he had made it (red) as fire he said: "Bring me that I may pour over it molten lead." 

Transliteration   A_tu_ni zubaral hadid hat ta_ iza_ sa_wa_ bainas sadafain qa_lan fukhu_ hat ta_ idza_ ja'alahu_ na_ran qa_la a_tu_ni ufrig 'alaihi qithra_

Ayah 97   

Yusuf Ali           Thus were they made powerless to scale it or to dig through it.

Transliteration   Famas tha_'u_ ay yazharu_hu wa mas tata_'u_ lahu_ naqba_

Ayah 98   

Yusuf Ali           He said: "This is a mercy from my Lord: but when the promise of my Lord comes to pass He will make it into dust; and the promise of My Lord is true."

Transliteration   Qa_la ha_dza_ rahmatum mir rab bi fa idza_ ja_ a wa'du rab bi ja'alahu_ dak ka_ wa ka_na wa'du rab bi haq qa_

Ayah 99   

Yusuf Ali           On that day We shall leave them to surge like waves on one another; the trumpet will be blown and We shall collect them all together.

Transliteration   Wa tarakna_ ba'dhahum yauma idziy yamu_ju fi ba'diw wa nufikha fis su_ri fajama'na_hum jam'a_

Ayah 100 

Yusuf Ali           And We shall present Hell that day for Unbelievers to see all spread out

Transliteration   Wa 'aradhna_ jahan nama yauma idzil lil ka_firina 'ardha_

Ayah 101 

Yusuf Ali           (Unbelievers) whose eyes had been under a veil from Remembrance of Me and who had been unable even to hear.

Transliteration   Nil lazina ka_nat a'yunuhum fi gita_in 'an zikri wa ka_nu_ la_ yastati'una sam'a_


Notes

2428  Literally, "the Two-horned one", the King with the Two Horns, or the Lord of the Two Epochs. Who was he? In what age, and where did he live? The Qur-an gives us no material on which we can base a positive answer. Nor is it necessary to find an answer, as the story is treated as a Parable. Popular opinion identifies Zul-qarnain with Alexander the Great. An alternative suggestion is an ancient Persian king, or a pre-historic Himyarite King. Zul-qarnain was a most powerful king, but it was Allah, Who, in His universal Plan, gave him power and provided him with the ways and means for his great work. His sway extended over East and West, and over people of diverse civilisations. He was just and righteous, not selfish or grasping. He protected the weak and punished the unlawful and the turbulent. Three of his expeditions are described in the text, each embodying a great ethical idea involved in the possession of kingship or power. (18.83)

2429  Great was his power and great were his opportunities ("ways and means"), which he used for justice and righteousness. But he recognised that his power and opportunities were given to him as a trust by Allah. He had faith, and did not forget Allah. (18.84)

2430  This is the first of the three episodes here mentioned, his expedition to the west. "Reaching the setting of the sun" does not mean the extreme west, for there is no such thing. West and East are relative terms. It means a western expedition terminated by a "spring of murky water." This has puzzled Commentators, and they have understood this to mean the dark, tempestuous sea. If Zul-qarnain is Alexander the Great, the reference is easily understood to be to Lychnitis (now Ochrida), west of Macedonia. It is fed entirely by underground springs in a limestone region, where the water is never very clear. (18.86)

2431  He had great power and a great opportunity. He got authority over a turbulent and unruly people. Was he going to be severe with them and chastise them, or was he going to seek peace at any price, i.e., to wink at violence and injustice so long as it did not affect his power? He chose the better course, as described in the next verse. To protect the weak and the innocent, he punished the guilty and the headstrong, but he remembered always that the true Punishment would come in the Hereafter-the true and final justice before the throne of Allah. (18.86)

2432  Though most powerful among kings, he remembered that his power was but human, and given by Allah. His punishments were but tentative, to preserve the balance of this life as he could appraise it. Even if his punishment was capital ("wrong doer sent back to his Lord") it was nothing compared to the dire consequences of sin, in the final Justice of Allah. (18.87)

2433  He never said like Pharaoh, "I am your Lord Most High!" (lxxix. 24). On the contrary his punishments were humbly regulated as not being final, and he laid more stress on the good he could do to those who lived normal lives in faith and righteousness. His rule was easy to them: he imposed no heavy tasks because of his power, but gave every opportunity to rich and poor for the exercise of virtue and goodness. Such is the spiritual lesson to be learned from the first episode. (18.88)

2434  We now come to the second episode. This is an expedition to the east. "Rising of the sun" has a meaning corresponding to "setting of the sun" in xviii. 86, as explained in n. 2430. (18.90)

2435  The people here lived very simple lives. Perhaps the climate was hot, and they required neither roofs over their heads, nor much clothing to protect them from the sun. What did he do with them? See next note. (18.90)

2436  They were a primitive people. He did not fuss over their primitiveness, but left them in the enjoyment of peace and tranquillity in their own way. In this he was wise. Power is apt to be intolerant and arrogant, and to interfere in everything that does not accord with its own glorification. Not so Zul-qarnain. He recognised his own limitations in the sight of Allah: man never completely understands his own position, but if he devoutly looks to Allah, he will live and let live. This is the spiritual lesson from the second episode. (18.91)

2437  Cf. xxi. 96. (18.93)

2438  It does not mean that they had no speech. It means that they did not understand the speech of the Conqueror. But they had parleys with him (through interpreters), as is evident from the verses following (xviii. 94-98). (18.93)

2439  What we are mainly concerned with is its interpretation. The Conqueror had now arrived among a people who were different in speech and race from him, but not quite primitive, for they were skilled in the working of metals, and could furnish blocks (or bricks) of iron, melt metals with bellows or blow-pipes, and prepare molten lead (xviii. 96). Apparently they were a peaceable and industrious race, much subject to incursions from wild tribes who are called Gog and Magog. Against these tribes they were willing to purchase immunity by paying the Conqueror tribute in return for protection. The permanent protection they wanted was the closing of a mountain gap through which the incursions were made. (18.94)

2440  Zul-qarnain was not greedy and did not want to impose a tribute to be carried away from an industrious population. He understood the power which Allah had given him, to involve duties and responsibilities on his part-the duty of protecting his subjects without imposing too heavy a taxation on them. He would provide the motive force and organising skill. Would they obey him and provide the material and labour, so that they could close the gap with a strong barrier, probably with well-secured gates? The word radm, translated "Barrier," does not necessarily mean a wall, but rather suggests a blocked door or entrance. (18.95)

2441  I understand the defences erected to have been a strong barrier of iron, with iron Gates. The jambs of the Gates were constituted with blocks or bricks of iron, and the interstices filled up with molten lead, so as to form an impregnable mass of metal. It may be that there was a stone wall also, but that is not mentioned. There was none in the Iron Gate near Bukhara. (18.96)

2442  Made it (red) as fire. What does "it" refer to? Probably to the iron, either in sheets or blocks, to be welded with the molten lead. (18.96)

2443  The iron wall and gates and towers were sufficiently high to prevent their being scaled and sufficiently strong with welded metal to resist any attempt to dig through them. (18.97)

2444  After all the effort which Zul-qarnain has made for their protection, he claims no credit for himself beyond that of discharging his duty as a ruler. He turns their attention to Allah, Who has provided the ways and means by which they can be helped and protected. But all such human precautions are apt to become futile. The time must come when they will crumble into dust. Allah has said so in His Revelation; and His word is true. And so the lesson from the third episode is: Take human precautions and do all in your power to protect yourselves from evil. But no protection is complete unless you seek the help and grace of Allah. The best of our precautions must crumble to dust when the appointed Day arrives. (18.98)

2445  And so we pass on to the Last Days before the Great Summons comes from Allah. All human barriers will be swept away. There will be tumultuous rushes. The Trumpet will be blown, and the Judgment will be set on foot. (18.99)

2446  If men had scoffed at Faith and the Hereafter, their eyes will be opened now, and they will see the terrible Reality. (18.100)

2447  Those very men who refused to see the many Signs of Allah which in this world convey His Message and to hear the Word of the Lord when it came to them, will then see without any mistake the consequences fully brought up before them. (18.101)


Holy Quran Surah 18 Al Kahf (The Cave)

Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Quran in English Language by A.Yusuf Ali

102 Do the Unbelievers think that they can take my servants as protectors besides Me? Verily We have prepared Hell for the Unbelievers for (their) entertainment.

103 Say: "Shall we tell you of those who lose most in respect of their deeds? 2448

104 "Those whose efforts have been wasted in this life while they thought that they were acquiring good by their works?" 2449

105 They are those who deny the Signs of their Lord and the fact of their having to meet Him (in the Hereafter): vain will be their works nor shall We on the Day of Judgment give them any Weight. 2450

106 That is their reward Hell; because they rejected Faith and took My Signs and My Messengers by way of jest. 2451

107 As to those who believe and work righteous deeds they have for their entertainment the Gardens of Paradise 2452

108 Wherein they shall dwell (for aye): no change will they wish for from them.

109 Say: "If the ocean were ink (wherewith to write out) the words of my Lord sooner would the ocean be exhausted than would the words of my Lord even if we added another ocean like it for its aid." 2453

110 Say: "I am but a man like yourselves (but) the inspiration has come to me that your Allah is one Allah: whoever expects to meet his Lord let him work righteousness and in the worship of his Lord admit no one as partner." 2454


Transliteration

Ayah 102 

Yusuf Ali           Do the Unbelievers think that they can take my servants as protectors besides Me? Verily We have prepared Hell for the Unbelievers for (their) entertainment.

Transliteration   Afahasibal lazina kafaru_ ay yat takhizu_ iba_di min du_ni auliya_ in na_ a'tadna_ jahan nama lilka_firina nuzula_

Ayah 103 

Yusuf Ali           Say: "Shall we tell you of those who lose most in respect of their deeds?

Transliteration   Qul hal nunab bi ukum bil akhsarina a'ma_la_

Ayah 104 

Yusuf Ali           "Those whose efforts have been wasted in this life while they thought that they were acquiring good by their works?"

Transliteration   Al lazina dhal la sa'yuhum fil haya_tid dun ya_ wa hum yahsabu_na an nahum yuhsinu_na shun'a_

Ayah 105 

Yusuf Ali           They are those who deny the Signs of their Lord and the fact of their having to meet Him (in the Hereafter): vain will be their works nor shall We on the Day of Judgment give them any Weight.

Transliteration   Ula_ ikal lazina kafaru_ bi a_ya_ti rab bihim wa liqa_ ihi fahabitat a'ma_luhum fala_ nuqimu lahum yaumal qiya_mati wazna_

Ayah 106 

Yusuf Ali           That is their reward Hell; because they rejected Faith and took My Signs and My Messengers by way of jest.

Transliteration   Za_lika jaza_uhum jahan namu bima_ kafaru_ wat takhadzu_ a_ya_ti wa rusuli huzuwa_

Ayah 107 

Yusuf Ali           As to those who believe and work righteous deeds they have for their entertainment the Gardens of Paradise

Transliteration   In nal lazina a_manu_ wa 'amilus sa_liha_ti ka_nat lahum jan na_tul firdausi nuzula_

Ayah 108 

Yusuf Ali           Wherein they shall dwell (for aye): no change will they wish for from them.

Transliteration   Kha_lidina fiha_ la_ yabghu_na 'anha_ hiwala_

Ayah 109 

Yusuf Ali           Say: "If the ocean were ink (wherewith to write out) the words of my Lord sooner would the ocean be exhausted than would the words of my Lord even if we added another ocean like it for its aid."

Transliteration   Qul lau ka_nal bahru mida_dal likalima_ti rab bi lanafidal bahru qabla antanfada kalima_tu rab bi wa lau ji na_ bimitslihi madada_

Ayah 110 

Yusuf Ali           Say: "I am but a man like yourselves (but) the inspiration has come to me that your Allah is one Allah: whoever expects to meet his Lord let him work righteousness and in the worship of his Lord admit no one as partner."

Transliteration   Qul in nama_ ana basyarum mitslukum yu_ha_ ilay ya an nama_ ila_hukum ila_huw wa_hid faman ka_na yarju_ liqa_ a rab bihi falya'mal amalan sa_lihaw wa la_ yusrik bi'iba_dati rab bihi ahada_


Notes

2448  That is, those who prided themselves on their works in this life, and now find that those works are of no avail. Their loss is all the greater because they had a misplaced confidence in their own deeds or in the assistance of false "protectors". Allah is the only Protector: no one else's protection is of any use. (18.103)

2449  Many people have such a smug sense of self-righteousness that while they go on doing wrong, they think that they are acquiring merit. So, in charity, all the elements that make for outward show or selfishness (as to get some worldly advantage) nullify the deed of charity. In the same way hypocrites sometimes affect to be surprised that their declared effort for somebody's good is not appreciated, when they are really seeking some hidden gain or false glory for themselves. The sincere are only those who believe in their spiritual responsibility and act as in Allah's sight. (18.104)

2450  What weight can be attached to works behind which the motives are not pure, or are positively evil? They are either wasted or count against those who seek to pass them off as meritorious! (18.105)

2451  False motives, pretence, deception, and hypocrisy, flourish because people do not take the higher life seriously. In effect they treat it as a jest. Signs and Messengers are sent as a special and personal Mercy from Allah, and for such things the first person singular is used as in this verse, even when it involves a sudden transition from the first person plural as in the last verse. (18.106)

2452  Firdaus in Persian means an enclosed place, a park. In technical theological language the word is used for the inner circle of Heaven, or the highest Heaven, the destination of those who perfectly fulfil both requirements, viz.; a sound faith, and perfectly righteous conduct. Small faults in either respect are forgiven; the Mercy of Allah steps in. (18.107)

2453  The Words and Signs and Mercies of Allah are in all Creation, and can never be fully set out in human language, however extended our means may be imagined to be. (18.109)

2454  Righteousness and true respect for Allah-which excludes the worship of anything else, whether idols, or deified men, or forces of nature, or faculties of man, or Self-these are the criteria of true worship. (18.110)


End of Surah Al-Kahf