Qur'anic Exegesis (Tafsir)
Tafsir (Arabic: تفسير, romanized: Tafsīr, lit. 'interpretation') is the Arabic word for exegesis, usually of the Qur'an. An author of a tafsir is a mufassir (Arabic: مُفسّر; plural: Arabic: مفسّرون, romanized: mufassirūn).
Exegetes, Sunni and Shi'i, typically understand this verse to refer to the Day of Judgment.
Yawm, when used in this way in the Qur'an, typically refers to the Day of Judgment, as does the verb nab'ath (to resurrect from the dead).
The verses immediately before and after this one also appear to speak about the Day of Judgment; for instance, they speak of the Day when people submit directly to Allah (not a secondary agent, such as the Mahdi), and will see punishment directly from Allah (rather than through a secondary means, such as warfare, which is predicted to occur at the end times).
In this section, it also says that those who associated partners with Allah will see those partners, but this usually does not happen in this world, especially if those partners are non-physical beings such as angels or demigods, or intangible things like digital currency. However, after death, everything is made visible.
So the most likely interpretation is that the verse refers to the Day of Judgment.
Furthermore, to my recollection, narrations about the time of the Mahdi (A) on earth do not speak of witnesses coming from nations and presenting themselves for judgment. Instead, at that time, nations will split up: people will differ individually; some will follow him and some will not.
Rather, the Mahdi will be the witness over everyone since he will ultimately have rule over the planet, and (at least according to Shia belief) he has divinely granted knowledge about everyone.
As for why one witness is mentioned - Possibly, one witness is mentioned for each nation because a single witness will be able to bear witness to the nation as a whole. (On the topic of nations, here are some reflections by 'Allamah Tabataba'i about nations: https://www.al-islam.org/ask/what-have-ahlulbait-as-said-about-nationali...).
It is also narrated from Imam al-Sadiq (A) that every nation and every time has a witness; therefore, if each nation is different at a different time, it may have a witness for each time period. (For instance, Italy might have a witness for the pre-Roman period, the time of the ancient Roman Empire, the Christian Roman Empire, the modern nation-state of Italy, etc.; or those might be treated as different "nations".)
For the Muslim ummah, it is said that the witness is probably the Prophet (S) or the Imams (A), who would have access to knowledge of all the deeds of the nation. Some might argue that the witness is someone else who simply bears witness to the deeds, even if the Prophet and Imams are able to bear witness to all.
So, from all angles, the verse seems to speak about the Day of Judgment. However, as with many ayat of the Qur'an, the exact meaning of the ayah is open to interpretation, and sometimes the important thing is to ponder on what the meaning could be and see what one can take from it.
Shawaahid Al-Tanzeel by al-Hasakaani شواهد التنزيل للحسكاني is well known book containing many Hadeeths fron Sunni sources in favor of Imam Ali (AS).
Allah, The Glorious Has clearly mentioned in Quran (Sura 16, Verse 44) that the Prophet is the explainer to people the meanings of Quranic verses. This means that no one is allowed to interpret any Quranic verse away from the Prophetic explanation which must be from authentic Hadeeth.
There are many Hadeeths against those who interpret Quran according to their own opinions and they will be in hellfire.
There is no question of a degree of our right to interpret Quran according to our thinking, as we must follow what the Prophet (SAWA) said as his Holy Progeny Ahlul Bayt (AS) narrated from him.
Anyone who gives an opinion on Quranic meanings away from the the authentic Hadeeths from the Prophet and Ahlul Bayt is misleading others and going against the orders of Allah in Quran 14;44.
We and all Muslims are been ordered by Allah (SWT) to take the meanings of Quran from the Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) as he is the Explainer المُبَيِّن of the Quran. (WE REVEALED ON YOU THE THIKR (FUL KNOWLEDGE OF QURAN) SO THAT YOU EXPLAIN CLEARLY TO PEOPLE WHAT WAS REVEALED TO THEM). Sura 16, verse 44).
We are the only Muslim community who fully follow this order with out fail. We take the meanings of Quranic verses from the Prophet through the most authentic narrators who are his Holy Progeny (Ahlul Bayt).
All other Muslim sects have in their books different narrations which are a mixture of authentic and not authentic or personal opinions and even Israelites.
Writing Hadeeths were prohibited among Sunni Muslims by their leader Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman, and others for around hundred years till Omar ibn Abdul Aziz allowed it. Ahlul Bayt recorded and taught Hadeeths of the Proohet since the time of the Prophet (SAWA) with out any gap.
The real meanings of Quran are nothing but what the Prophet explained, and that exactly was narrated by Ahlul Bayt (AS).
Deviating from Ahlul Bayt narrations is deviating from the authentic meanings of Quran and failing to obey Allah's orders to take Quranic meanings from the Prophet (SAWA) according to Quran 16:44.
Qur'an 2:7 says: "Allah has set a seal upon their hearts and upon their hearing, and there is a covering over their eyes"
This refers to the loss of the ability to perceive the truth, especially about matters of the divine, truth, or right and wrong. (It does not refer to physical seeing and hearing, but rather seeing and hearing as metaphorical faculties for understanding. Similarly, the heart here is understood as a spiritual organ which perceives the truth.)
Although the verse attributes the sealing of the heart and ears to Allah, it is generally understood to mean that human beings bring this upon themselves through repeated transgression and obduracy against the truth, or denying the truth for personal gain. For instance, in the time of the Prophet (S), some of his enemies were trying to kill him or torturing the Muslims. Over time, this eats away at the capability of the heart (or other faculties) to perceive the truth, until it becomes blocked.
The verse does not specify who is covering their eyes, only that they are covered, and this suggests that they themselves are drawing blinders over their ability to perceive. (In the time of the Prophet (S), some people did this directly - for instance, plugging their ears when around the Prophet (S); today, some people do this by intentionally only going to media websites which reflect their views and ideologies and refusing to consider that they could be wrong.)
Some people who hold there is a reality to deeds in the unseen world would say that the performance of certain transgressions leaves an impact on the spiritual heart - that is to say, people plug up their hearts (ears, etc) through wrong deeds, just like one might plug up a drain over a long time through running detritus through it and not cleaning it out (through repentance and good acts).
So it is a matter of cause and effect, or action and reaction, based on our own free will.
However, Allah is the ultimate doer of all acts and all chains of cause and effect ultimately go back to Allah since Allah is the ultimate power in the universe. Furthermore, all things happen with Allah's permission and within the framework of what the divine decree allows, as well as the physical and spiritual laws of the universe. So for these reasons, the sealing is attributed to Allah.
As for whether Allah intends for all of us to go to heaven... as one of the few creatures around us with free will, heaven and hell are possibilities for all of us, although we can be certain of Allah's justice, and hope for Allah's mercy and the intercession of the Prophet (S) and awliya (A).
No, insofar as there is not full agreement on the reliability of all hadith about commentary of the Qur'an that has been attributed to the Prophet (S) and Ahl al-Bayt (A). Probably, some of it is correct and some of it is incorrect. Also, we have probably lost a lot of material over history. This is apart from the fact that Shi'i tafsir, in particular, has not been translated extensively into English.
So you will still need to read various sources and investigate and put things together if you want to try to get as accurate a picture as possible. However, some suggestions in the meantime are:
* Read The Study Qur'an, ed. S. H. Nasr, and look specifically at the views from Shii commentators (the names of the commentators are given in parentheses). Of course there is no reason why Sunni commentators should not also have correct views sometimes, but I am just specifying this to give the best answer to the question here.
* Tafsir al-Ayyashi, trans. Nazmina Dhanji, which was just published.
* Reading the section on narrations in Tafsir al-Mizan (some of which is available online)
* Inshallah, ICAS Press is also planning to publish the translation of Tafsir al-Asfa soon, which is also heavily narration based and from a Shi'i lens.
Hope that helps! Maybe some people will also add some good sources.
Thank you for your question. This work is not considered to be sufficient in terms of authenticity, and the ascriptions cannot be taken at face value, although it is possible for someone experienced in the field to make use of some of the concepts if they appear in traditions that are of a higher value in terms of authenticity.
May you always be successful
Not all of the commentaries are completely authentic. Many commentaries contain unauthentic narrations or incorrect views or opinions. You need to seek guidance from sincere and knowledgeable scholars before taking any commentary fore granted. You can take the commentaries written by our big scholars according to the authentic narrations from the Prophet (SAWA) and Ahlul Bayt (AS).
A Kaafir is someone who is ungrateful. This term is used for disbelievers because of all of the things Allah has given them they are ungrateful to Him and deny Him.
Qur'an 5:55: Only Allah is your wali, and His Messenger, and those who believe, those who keep up prayers and pay zakat while they bow [in ruku'].
Based on narrations, Twelver Shi'i and a number of Sunni exegetes have understood this verse to refer to the time when Imam 'Ali (A) gave a ring in charity to someone while he was in ruku'.
(Of course, Sunni exegetes take a different understanding of "wali" and do not draw the conclusion that Imam 'Ali (A) should be caliph, otherwise they would be Shi'i exegetes. Still, the same explanation is presented. There are also some other views on the verse put forward by some Sunni exegetes.)
This view is accepted based on a plurality of narrations expressing this interpretation, rather than a single narration whose chain of narration could be explored. (That is, it comes from many different narrators and was referred to in some various different situations.)
One can argue for the overall truthfulness of this story given that there are a number of narrations on it, and that it was accepted in the non-Shi'i tradition as well. Also, by itself, the verse doesn't make much sense unless it refers to a specific incident, as people do not usually give charity specifically during ruku'.
Some non-Shi'i translators render the verse in English to mean "they give charity AND they are bowing", not WHILE they are bowing, but grammatically, the phrase "wa hum raki'un" seems best to come across as a descriptor of what comes before it rather than a separate clause [that is, to mean WHILE they are bowing]. In any case, it would also not make sense to specifically specify "bowing" as something that people who give charity also do especially since all Muslims are required to give zakat and bow. For that reason, it is particularly helpful to have the narration to understand this last part. [The meaning of God and God's Messenger being our wali is, of course, clear.]
However, since there are multiple narrations on it, it is not necessarily certain which particular narration you are asking about with regard to authenticity. However, if you have a specific narration in mind, please do post again asking about it!
As a suggestion, you can read a number of narrations relating to this verse in Tafsir al-Mizan on this verse (in the section on narrations after the main exegesis); it is available online in Arabic, Farsi, and English (and perhaps other languages also).
Thank you for your question. While the Imams (as) commented on verses of the Qur'an and conveyed a world view which is based on Qur'anic principles they did not compose works of tafsir. There are a couple of commentaries attributed to certain Imams (as) but there are not reliably composed by them (as). But there is a genre of tafsir that focuses on the narrations from the Family of the Prophet (as) known as tafsir al-riwa'i or tafwir bil ma'thur which includes many works composed by scholars and ith this style of commentary.
May you always be successful
Yes, it is permissible to buy Quran with translation but you need to be sure about the accuracy of the translations as many translations available online and in book shops are wrong and misleading. Tajweed books and materials are always permissible.