وَمَن نُعَمّـِرْهُ نُنَكّـِسْهُ فِي الْخَلْقِ أَفَلاَ يَعْقِلُونَ
68. “And whomever We cause to live long, We reverse him to an abject state in constitution; do they not then understand?”
Through previous verses Allah implicitly said that if He pleases He may make the eyes blind and change the features. This verse refers to an example of these changes concerning the aged persons.
It points to the man’s situation at the end of his life from the point of weakness and inability of both mind and body, so that it can be both a warning unto those who postpone choosing the path of guidance from today to tomorrow, and an answer to those who take the short of life as a cause for their faults, and it can be an evidence for the might of Allah indicating that as He is able to return a strong and powerful man to the weakness of his childhood, He is able to bring forth the Resurrection and also make the sinners blind and unable to move.
The Qur’anic term /nunakkishu/ is derived from the Arabic term /tankis/ in the sense of reversing something in a manner that its top comes down and its down goes up in the place of the top. Here, there is a metonymy pointing to the complete return of man to the circumstances of his childhood.
From the very beginning of his creation, man is weak and then gradually he grows and develops. During the foetus course every day he passes some new stages and new growth. After his birth he will swiftly continue the path of development from the point of body and spirit, and the God-given strengths and talents, which are hidden inside his entity, will appear one after another.
The course of youth, and next to it, the course of expertness approach, and man will be seated in the climax of bodily and spiritual development. Here, sometimes, the body and the spirit separate their way from each other. The spirit will continue its path of development, while the body begin retardation.
But, at last, the man’s intellect, too, will begin the downward march, and little by little, and sometimes quickly, that stages of childhood return. The childish movements begin, and thinking, and even one’s pretext seeking will be like those of children.
The bodily weakness will also come along with them, with this difference that these movements and spiritualities are sweet and attractive when they are from the side of children, because they are some glad-tidings unto their future hopeful lives and that is why they are completely tolerable. But in relation to the old persons, they are pungent, not beautiful, and, sometimes, hateful, or pitiful.
Verily, there will come some days which will be very painful, so much so that the depth of its inconvenience is hardly considerable.
This meaning has been pointed out in Surah Al-Hajj, No. 22, verse 5, where it says:
(They will not recognize even their nearest members of their family.)
However, the Qur’anic sentence /’afala ya‘qilun/ (do they not then understand) gives a wonderful remark in this regard and it tells men: if this strength and power that you have were not temporary it would not be taken from you so easy. Do know that there is another might over you which is capable of doing everything.
You must be careful of yourself before reaching that stage, and before that the mirth and beauty turns into sadness and withered state, make the best of it and provide the provision of the path of the next world in this world, since in the term of weakness, senility, and wretchedness mostly you are able to do nothing.
So, one of the five things that the Prophet (S) recommended Abuthar to be careful of this very thing.
He (S) said:
“Do avail five things before five things: your youth before your senility, your health before your sickness, your richness before your poverty, your ease before your affliction, and your life before your death.”1
وَمَا عَلَّمْنَاهُ الشّـِعْرَ وَمَا يَنبَغِي لَهُ إِنْ هُوَ إِلاَّ ذِكْرٌ وَقُرْءَانٌ مُّبِينٌ
69. “And We have not taught him poetry, nor would it beseem him; it is naught but a Reminder and manifesting Qur’an,”
One of the accusations that the Prophet (S) was charged, besides accusing him of being sorcerer, insane and soothsayer, was the accusation of being a poet. Contrast to revelation, poetry is the fruit of imagination.
Contrast to revelation, poetry arises from emotions and feelings. Contrast to revelation which is from the side of Allah and originates from the source of existence and turns on the pivot of realities, poetry is usually mixed with exaggeration.
The Qur’an is not anything but a remembrance.
It is the remembrance of Power and Wrath of Allah; the remembrance of His graces and bounties; the remembrance of His pardon and forgiveness; the remembrance of His way of treatment and His laws; the remembrance of His whole prophets, saints, and friends; a remembrance of the instinctive events of history; a remembrance of the factors of dignity and failure of nations; the remembrance of the righteous and the guided ones; a remembrance of the evildoers, pagans, mischief mongers, sinners, tyrants and their end; a remembrance of sincerities, donations, brevities, chastity, patience and their good end; a remembrance of murders, tortures, hurts, accusations, scorns, injustices, cruelties, and the evil end of the men of pride; a remembrance of Allah’s commandments and prohibitions, admonishments and wisdoms; a remembrance of the created things in the heaven, the earth, and the seas; a remembrance of the future of the history, the triumph of the government of the truth and the world becoming full of justice and condemnation of the unjust and the cruelty; a remembrance of the purgatory, Resurrection, and the events before Hereafter, and the state of the scene of Hereafter, the dangers of Hell, and the blessings of Paradise.
The Holy Qur’an is the source of admonishments and remembrance. The Qur’an is a clear and understandable word with argumentation.
Yes, with negation of poetry from the Prophet (S), the Qur’an adds:
لِيُنذِرَ مَن كَانَ حَيّاً وَيَحِقَّ الْقَوْلُ عَلَي الْكَافِرِينَ
70. “That it may warn him who is alive and the Word may be proved against the disbelievers.”
A sign for the heart to be alive is the acceptance of the warnings of the Qur’an, because the appointment of the prophets and the revelation to them are the source of awareness and spiritual intelligence of the godly people, and it is to complete the argument for the dead-hearted ones.
The aim of this verse is:
Yes, these verses are as a Reminder which is the source of remembrance and is the means of awareness. These verses are from ‘the manifesting Qur’an’ which states the truth without any curtain and with conclusiveness and explicitness, and it is why it is the factor of awareness, life and living.
Once more here we see that the Qur’an has considered the faith as ‘life’ and the believers as ‘the living ones’ and the disbelievers as ‘the dead’. From one side, it mentions ‘living’ and on the other side opposite to it, it mentions ‘disbelievers’.
This is that very spiritual ‘life’ and ‘death’ which is more significant than the apparent life and death, and their effects are vaster and more expanded. If life and living mean ‘to breathe’, ‘to eat’, and ‘to walk’ these are those which are common in all animals. This is not the human life.
Human life is the appearance of the effects of intellect, the outstanding good habits of man’s spirit, piety, donation, self-sacrifice, controlling the self, virtue, and morality; and the Qur’an grows this life in man’s self.
However, concerning the invitation of the Qur’an, human beings are divided in two groups. A group of them are alive and alert. These are those who answer its invitation positively and hearken to its warnings and admonishments.
The next group are the dead-hearted disbelievers who never show any positive reaction to it. But this warning works to complete the argument upon them and makes the command of punishment certain on them.
However, man has several kinds of life and death. The first is ‘the vegetation life’ which is the manifestation of the very growth, eating, and reproduction, and from this point of view he is rather similar to all of plants.
The next is the animal life and death, the clear sign of which is ‘feeling’ and ‘motion’, and in these two qualities he is the same as other animals.
The third kind of life is specific to human beings. This life separates them from plants and other animals. This is the human and spiritual life. This is the same thing which has been rendered as ‘the life of the hearts’ in the Islamic narrations; and the objective meaning of ‘heart’ here, is the man’s spirit, mind, and emotions.
Amir-ul-Mu’mineen Ali (as) in his sermons and sayings has emphasized on this matter very much.
Concerning the Holy Qur’an, in a sermon in Nahj-ul-Balaqah he says:
“…and understand it thoroughly for it is the best blossoming of the hearts…”2
In another place, concerning wisdom and knowledge, he (as) says:
“Wisdom is a life for the dead hearts.”3
Sometimes the sickness of the heart is compared with the sickness of the body.
Ali (as) says:
“…while worse than bodily ailment is the disease of the heart…”4
And one time he (as) says:
“…He whose fear of Allah (his piety) is less, his heart dies…”5
There are many other expressions of this kind. Imam Zayn-ul-‘Abidin (as) in one of his supplications says:
“A great crime has caused my heart to die”6
On the other side, the Qur’an has considered a special kind of apparent insight, hearing, apprehension, and perception, for man as about the disbelievers it says:
In another occurrence, Qur’an calls the hypocrites as some diseased-hearted people that Allah increases their disease:
It introduces those who do not fear Allah as stone-hearted ones whose heart is harder than stone:
In another place the Qur’an says:
From all these meanings, and from some abundant other expressions which are similar to them, it is clearly understood that the Qur’an counts the pivot of life and death that very pivot of human and wisdom, because the whole value of man has also been put in this very section.
أَوَلَمْ يَرَوْا أَنَّا خَلَقْنَا لَهُم مّـِمَّا عَمِلَتْ أَيْدِينَا أَنْعَاماً فَهُمْ لَهَا مَالِكُونَ
وَذَلَّلْنَاهَا لَهُمْ فَمِنْهَا رَكُوبُهُمْ وَمِنْهَا يَأْكُلُونَ
71. “Have they not seen that We have created for them of that Our hands wrought cattle that of them they own?”
72. “And then (the cattle) We have subdued to them, and some of them they ride upon, and some of them they eat.”
In order to recognize the Power of Allah, men can take help by nothing to the animals which are always available for him almost every where.
Again in these verses the Qur’an returns to the subject of Monotheism and polytheism and, after counting some signs of the greatness of Allah in the life of men, and removing their needs from the side of Allah, it points to the weakness and inability of idols and, in a clear comparison, it makes manifest the truthfulness of the line of monotheism and falseness of the line of polytheism.
At first, it says:
Then, in the next verse it implies that in order that they can enjoy these cattle well Allah has subdued them to them so that not only they ride upon them but also they eat from them.
If cow and sheep were not tamed, the door of the world of dairy products, which have many benefits for man, would be shut to him, and if all animals were wild, many of the journeys could not be performed.
Both the earth:
and animals are subdued:
But man, who is in need of both of them is disobedient:
وَلَهُمْ فِيهَا مَنَافِعُ وَمَشَارِبُ أَفَلاَ يَشْكُرُونَ
73. “And therein they have benefits and drinks, will they not then be grateful?”
The Arabic word /mašarib/ is the plural form of /mašrab/ and it is the place of drinking water, but here the purpose of it is ‘to drink milk’.
This verse implicitly says that their benefits do not end to only this, but there are some other benefits for them in these animals.
Yet, do they not thank for these blessings, a thank which is the means of Knowing Allah and recognizing the Benefactor?
It continues saying:
Among the different blessings which have surrounded man, here the Qur’an stresses on the blessing of cattle, because they are permanently present in the daily life of man, so that man’s life has been mixed with them in a manner that if it may be obliterated from his life, it will really be difficult for him; but because of their constant presence they are less regarded.
points to many other benefits which man gets from cattle, including: their wool for kinds of clothing, carpets, and tents; their skin for clothes, shoes, hats, and different means of life.
Even today when the industry has entirely changed the feature of man’s life, yet the need of men from the point of both nutrition and clothes and other means of life to cattle has remained.
Even today, different kinds of serums and vaccines which are the most effective means for struggling against disease or for prevention, are provided from cattle and the materials taken from their blood.
Even the most worthless things in the life of cattle, that is, their feces, are used, too. By them lands will be fertilized and trees are made fruitful.
The application of the Qur’anic term /mašarib/ refers to the kinds of milk which are taken from different cattle and a great part of man’s food stuff is usually produced from it and its productions, so that the milk industries and the products from milk in the world today form an important part of exports and imports of some countries, the same milk which is a complete food for man.
This wholesome drink comes out from special parts of the body and causes the pleasure of its drinkers and is the source of strength for the weak.
وَاتَّخَذُوا مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ ءَالِهَةً لَّعَلَّهُمْ يُنصَرُونَ
لاَ يَسْتَطِيعُونَ نَصْرَهُمْ وَهُمْ لَهُمْ جُندٌ مُّحْضَرُونَ
74. “And they have taken gods besides Allah, haply they might be helped.”
75. “They shall not be able to help them; and yet they (the disbelievers) are their host (who in Hereafter) shall be brought forth (in Hell Fire).”
Polytheism and idolatry both are counted as ingratitude of blessings. The incentive of idolaters is based on imaginations and conjectures.
This verse refers to the status of polytheists, where it says:
What a false conjecture and vain thought they have that they put these powerless creatures, that cannot even defend themselves let alone the others, beside the Creator of the earth and the sky and the giver of those abundant merits and that they expect them to help them in the problems of life.
And, in the next verse, regarding the worshippers of idols, the Qur’an says:
How painful it will be that on that Day these followers march at the back of idols and their hosts, and all of them will attend the Court of Justice of Allah and after that they entirely will be sent into Hell without that the idols can solve any problem of their own host.
In principle, the Arabic word /muhdarun/ (shall be brought forth) is a sign of contempt everywhere, and bringing persons forth without that they themselves be willing to it is the sign of their humiliation.
فَلاَ يَحْزُنكَ قَوْلُهُمْ إِنَّا نعْلَمُ مَا يُسِرُّونَ وَمَا يُعْلِنُونَ
76. “Therefore, let not their speech grieve you. Verily We know what they do in secret and what they do openly.”
As the console of the Prophet (S) and strengthening his spirit against those many hindrances, temptations, and superstitious thoughts and deeds, this holy verse says:
Sometimes they call you a poet, sometimes a sorcerer, and sometimes they accuse you with some other things, but Allah knows all what they hide in their hearts or they reveal by their tongues.
The verse continues saying:
Neither are their intentions concealed to Us nor their hidden plots, nor their belies, nor their open naughtiness. We know them all and We have kept their full account for the Reckoning Day, and We secure you in this world from their vice, too.
Not only the Prophet (S) but also every believer can be animated by this statement of Allah, because everything in this world exists in the Presence of Allah, and nothing of the devices of the enemies are concealed to Him. He will not leave His friends alone at the violent moments and He will always be their supporter and protector.
أَوَلَمْ يَرَ الإِنسَانُ أَنَّا خَلَقْنَاهُ مِن نُّطْفَةٍ فَإِذَا هُوَ خَصِيمٌ مُّبِينٌ
وَضَرَبَ لَنَا مَثَلاً وَنَسِيَ خَلْقَهُ قَالَ مَن يُحْيِ الْعِظَامَ وَهِيَ رَمِيمٌ
77. “Has not man seen that We created him of a sperm-drop? Yet behold! He is an open disputant.”
78. “And he has struck for Us a similitude and forgotten his creation; he says: ‘Who shall quicken the bones when they are decayed?’”
In the majority of the concerning commentary books it has been cited that: A man from among the polytheists by the name of ’Ubay-ibn-Khalaf, or -ibn-Wa’il found a piece of rotten bone and said’Umayyat-ibn-Khalaf, or ‘As that by that firm proof he would stand with entity against Muhammad (S) and he might nullify his speech about Resurrection.
He took that piece of stone and came to the Prophet of Islam (S). (Perhaps, he made a part of it as powder at the presence of the Prophet (S)) and said:
“Who can give life again to these decayed stones? (And which intellect may believe it?)”.
Then the abovementioned verses together with four verses after them were revealed and gave a logical firm answer to him and those who thought like him.
The various discussions related to Origin, Resurrection, and prophethood, have been mentioned in Surah Ya-Sin in different sections. This Surah began with the name of the Holy Qur’an and the subject of prophethood, and it ends with seven related verses which contain the strongests statement about Resurrection.
At first, the Qur’an takes man to the beginning day of his life, the day when he was not more than a worthless sperm-drop, and makes him think.
What an expressive meaning it is! At first it emphasizes on the word ‘man’, that is, every man with any belief and school of thought and with any amount of knowledge can find out this truth.
Then it speaks of the Arabic word /nutfah/ which originally means: the naught worthless water; so that this proud and egoistic man thinks a little and knows that what he was on the first day.
And, yet, the entire of this naught drop of water has not been the source of his entity, but a very small living cell, which cannot be seen by the ordinary eyes, among thousands cells which were floating in that drop of water, combined with a very small living cell which was in the woman’s womb, and then, from that very small being, man came into being.
This creature passed the developing stages one after another, that according to the statement of the Qur’an, at the beginning of Surah Al-Mu’minun, six stages of them are inside the womb: (the stages of: sperm, then clot, then a lump of flesh, then the appearance of bones, then they being covered with flesh, and, finally, the appearance of sense and movement in it.)14
After his birth, when he was a weak and unable child, he quickly passed the stages of development, too, until when he reached the stage of his puberty: the bodily and mental growth. Yes, this weak and unable creature became so strong and powerful that he let himself stand against Allah and forget his both past and future and become the clear example of:
It is interesting that the Qur’anic phrase /xasim-un-mubin/ (an open disputant) has an aspect of ‘strength’ and an aspect of ‘weakness’ that, apparently, here the Qur’an refers to both of them.
From one side, this action is not done save by a human being that naturally has intellect, thought, understanding, and independent will, authority, and power.
And we know that the most important thing in the man’s life is his ability of speaking, the contents of such speeches will formerly be provided in his thought, then they will be put together in the form of sentences and, like bullets of a gun, these sentences come out of the mouth and will be shot at the aim one after another.
This is the marvellous action that no living creature can do except man.
And, thus, the holy verse illustrates the power of Allah in this great strength that He has given to this apparently insignificant drop of water.
But, on the other side, man is a forgetful and proud being, and he uses these bounties, that He has bestowed on him, against Him and disputes inimically against Him. What an unaware and stubborn being he is!
The next holy verse implicitly announces that for man’s unawareness this is enough that he struck a similitude for Allah and as he thought he had found a firm proof while he, forgetting his first creation, said:
The verse says:
The purpose of ‘striking similitude’ here is not an ordinary proverb or a simile and an allusion, but the purpose is the statement of a reasoning and mentioning an extension in order to prove a general matter.
Yes, he (’Ubay-ibn-Khalaf, or ’Umayyat-ibn-Khalaf, or ‘As-ibn-Wa’il) finds a rotten bone in the desert. It was not known to whom that bone belonged. Whether he had died by a natural death, or he had been killed badly in one of the battles of the Age of Ignorance, or he had died because of hunger. However, he thought he had found a very firm proof.
With an anger accompanied with happiness, he takes the piece of bone of a dead person and says:
“By this firm proof I stand with enmity against Muhammad (S) So that he can not give any answer.”
He came hastily to the Prophet (S) and shouted saying:
“Who can give life to this rotten bone?”
Then he crushed a part of the bone into powder and scattered it on the ground. He thought the Prophet (S) would not have any answer for that logic.
It is interesting that the Qur’an has given his whole answer in a short sentence, saying:
although next to it, the Qur’an has also mentioned some more explanation with more reasoning so it implies that if he had not forgotten his creation, he would not have attached such a weak and vain reasoning.
O’ forgetful man, return back and look at your creation that you were an insignificant sperm and every day He put a new cloth of life on you.
You are always in the state of death and resurrection. You were changed from the state of clot into an animal and you came out from that world and became a human being. But you, O’ forgetful man! Did you forget all these states and ask who gives life to these decayed bones?
When this bone decays completely, just it will become dust. Were you not dust at first?
قُلْ يُحْيِيهَا الَّذِي أَنشَاَهآ أَوَّلَ مَرَّةٍ وَهُوَ بِكُلِّ خَلْقٍ عَلِيمٌ
79. “Say: ‘He will enliven them who created them for the first time, and He knows all creation,”
Being attentive to the creation of man from sperm, may strengthen the faith of man in Resurrection.
Resurrection needs two things: the Power of Allah in recreation of man; and His cognizance to the people’s deeds. This verse refers to both of them.
The sentence which says:
is the sign of His power, and the sentence saying:
is the sign of His knowledge.
In this verse He commands the Prophet of Islam (S) to tell this obstinate, proud, and forgetful man that He gives life to him again Who created him on the first day.
Here is the commandment:
If today there is a rotten bone available from him, once even this rotten bone did not exist either, and there was not also even any dust. Yes, He Who created him of nothing, enlivening the decayed bones is easier for Him.
And if you think that when this rotten bone became dust and was scattered everywhere, who could recognize those parts and gather them from different places? The answer to this question is also clear. He is aware of every creature and knows all his specialities.
The verse continues saying:
He Who has such a ‘Power’ and ‘Knowledge’ will have no difficulty for the subject of Resurrection and enlivening the dead. If we turn a magnet amongst a heap of dust which contains scattered pieces of iron, it will quickly gather all these pieces of iron, while it is not more than an inanimate being.
By a single command, Allah can easily gather all the particles of every man’s body in any place of the earth it may be.
He is aware of not only the principle of the creation of man, but also of their intentions and actions, and the account and reckoning of them is clear with Him.
الَّذِي جَعَلَ لَكُم مِنَ الشَّجَرِ الأَخْضَرِ نَاراً فَإِذَآ أَنتُم مِنْهُ تُوقِدُونَ
80. “He Who made for you fire from the green tree, and behold! from it you kindle (fire).”
Allah gathers the opposites. He can gather water and fire, which do not have consistency with each other.
In this verse, the Qur’an brings some more discussions about the subject of Resurrection, and follows it by three or four interesting ways.
At first, it says:
Allah is also able to give life to these rotten bones. What a wonderful and interesting meaning it is! that the more we contemplate about it, the more and deeper concepts it delivers to us.
In principle, many of the verses of the Qur’an contain several meanings. Some of them are simple for all people, in any time and any place, while some others are deep for the elect, and, finally, some of them are completely deep which are for the elites of the elect, or for other times and centuries in far distanced future.
In the meantime, these meanings do not contrast with each other; and in the same moment they are gathered in an expressive concept.
The first interpretation that many of the earlier Islamic commentators have mentioned for it, and it is a simple and clear meaning which is understandable for all people, is that: in ancient times, it was a custom among Arabs that for kindling fire they used the wood of some special trees called ‘Markh’ and ‘‘Afar’, which grew in the deserts of Arabia.
The Arabic terms /marx/ and /‘afar/ were the names of two kinds of kindling wood, the earlier was put in the below and the latter was put over it, and like a kindling stone, a spark came out from them and, in fact, they were used instead of today match. The Qur’an implicitly says: that the Lord, Who can bring out fire from these green trees, is also able to give life to the dead.
Water and fire are two opposite things. The One Who can put them beside each other, has the ability to put ‘life’ beside ‘death’ and ‘death’ beside ‘life’.
Praise upon the Creator of existence Who keeps ‘fire’ inside ‘water’ and holds ‘water’ in the middle of ‘fire’. It is certain that giving life to the dead people is not a difficult thing for Him.
If we step out beyond this meaning, we reach a more punctilious commentary, and it is that the property of kindling fire by the wood of trees is not limited to the wood of ‘Marakh’ and ‘Afar, but this property exists in all trees and in all of the materials of the world, (although the wood of the abovementioned two trees, because of their materials and their specific gravity, are more appropriate for this action).
In short, if any piece of wood of any trees strikes hard to another piece, they produce spark, even it is the wood of the green trees.
It is for this reason that sometimes there happen some vast and horrible fire accidents inside forests that nobody has been their factor; their only factor has been the strong blow of winds and storms that has caused the branches of trees to crush to each other and from between them a spark has come to burn dry leaves and then the blow of wind has helped it, and this has been the main factor.
This is the very spark of electricity which appears by friction and rubbing. This is the same fire which is hidden inside of all particles of the beings of the world and, at the time of friction and rubbing, it shows itself in such a way, He creates ‘fire’ from ‘a green tree’.
This is a vaster commentary which makes the perspective of gathering of opposites in creation vaster, and which shows subsistence in ‘destruction’ more clear.
But, here, there is a third commentary which is deeper than that, which has been found out by the help of modern science and we have called it ‘the resurrection of energies’.
Explanation: One of the important actions of plants is the subject of ‘taking carbon’ from air and making vegetal-cellules, the main parts of which are: ‘Carbon’, ‘Oxygen’ and ‘Hydrogen’.
Now, we may see how is this cellule made? The small parts of trees and plants take the carbonic gas from air and analyse it. Then, they release its oxygen and keep its carbon in themselves. They combine it with water and make the wood of trees from it. For more information, you may refer to the books written in this regard.
At the end, the action of kindling fire by using the wood of trees, though it is a simple matter in our view, a paying careful attention to it makes it clear that it is one of the most surprising matters, because the most part of materials of which a tree is formed is water and some particles of the soil, and neither of them is combustible.
What a power is this that has made this energetic matter from water, soil, (and air) which has been used closely in the life of men for thousands years.
أَوَلَيْسَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَ بِقَادِرٍ عَلَي أَن يَخْلُقَ مِثْلَهُم بَلَي وَهُوَ الْخَلاَّقُ الْعَلِيمُ
81. “Is not He, Who created the heavens and the earth, able to create the like of them? Yes, (He can!) And he is the Creator (Omnipotent), the Knower.”
In speaking with the disbelievers, we ought to begin with the insignificant subjects and then we refer to greater subjects. (The first parable was sperm, the next parable was green tree, and the third parable was the creation of heavens.)
Now, this verse beings by the way of the infinite Power of Allah, and implicitly says that whether the One, Who has created the heavens and the earth with those abundant glories, wonders, and amazing regular systems, can not create the like of these men who have become rotten (and return them to a new life). Yes, He can and He is the Omnipotent Creator, the Knower.
The verse says:
This sentence, which has been started with ‘a positive interrogation with a negative sense’, in fact propounds a question for the vigilant consciences and alert wisdoms that whether you do not look at this splendid sky with all its wonderful planets and fixed stars and the numerous systems and galaxies in it, that any piece of it is a vast world?
The One Who is able to create such extraordinary great and regular worlds, how is it possible that He would not be able to enliven the dead?
And since the answer of this question is present in the heart of any vigilant person, it does not wait for its answer, and immediately implicitly says: Yes, He has such a power.
And next to it, the Qur’an emphasizes on these two great attributes of Allah, which must be noted in relation to this subject, viz., the attribute of Creativity and His infinite Knowledge, which, in fact, is an evidence upon the former statesment, saying that if you are in doubt concerning His Power in relation with creation
And if the act of gathering these particles needs knowledge, He is Omnipotent and, from any point of view, is Aware and Knower.
By the way, the Arabic antecedent of the Qur’anic term /mithlahum/ (the like of them) returns to human beings, that is, the Creator of the heavens and the earth is able to create the like man.
إِنَّمَآ أَمْرُهُ إِذَآ أَرَادَ شَيْئاً أَن يَقُولَ لَهُ كُن فَيَكُونُ
فَسُبْحَانَ الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ مَلَكُوتُ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ وَإِلَيْهِ تُرْجَعُونَ
82. “His command, when he intends anything, is only to say to it ‘Be’, so it is.”
83. “So glory be to Him, in Whose hand is the domination of everything, and unto Whom you shall be returned.”
In the creation of existence, Allah needs neither a means nor any help, nor anyone who removes the barriers.
This holy verse is an emphasis upon what was said in the former verses. It is an emphasis on this fact that for His Will and Power, every creation is easy. It is the same for Him to create the lofty skies and the earth, or that He creates a small insect.
The verse says:
Everything depends on His only single command, and about the One Who has such a Power there is no room of doubt that He can give life to the dead.
It is evident that the command of Allah, here, is not a command in expression, and also the Arabic phrase /kun/ (Be) is not a phrase that states by utterance, because neither has He utterance nor is He in need of expressions, but the purpose is His Will upon the direct creation of something; and the application of the word /kun/ (Be) is for the sake that there is not a shorter, smaller and quicker than this one in consideration.
Yes, as soon as His intention comes to something, that thing comes into being.
In other words, when Allah intends something, it will immediately come into being, so that there is no distance between ‘His Will’ and the existence of the things.
Therefore, the application of ‘command’, ‘saying’ and the phrase: ‘Be’ all are an explanation for the subject of creation and making men understand His Power, and, as we said before, the command in expression, utterance and the word containing ‘B’ and ‘E’ are not necessary. All of them indicate the rapid existence of the things after the Will of Allah. He does not need any utterance and words.
And again in other more clear words, there are no more than two stages in the deeds of Allah: the stage of Will, and the stage of creation.
In the abovementioned verse, the second stage has been referred to as ‘command’, say, and the phrase ‘Be’.
How beautifully Amir-ul-Mu’mineen Ali (as) says in one of his sermons:
“When He intends to create something He says ‘Be’ and there it is, but not through a voice that strikes (the ears) is that call heard. His speech is an act of His creation. His like never existed before this. If it had been created it would have been the second god.”15
In other words, every call needs an addressee, and when a thing has not been existed, how does Allah addresses it by the phrase ‘Be’? Is a non-existent thing addressable?
This very meaning has been mentioned in some other verses of the Qur’an.
For instance, Surah Al-Baqarah, No. 2, verse 117 says:
In the next verse, which is the last verse of Surah Ya-Sin, in a general conclusion on the subject of Origin and Resurrection it ends beautifully this discussion, where it says:
Regarding to the fact that the Arabic word /malakut/ is derived from /mulk/ in the sense of ‘government and ownership’ the additional Arabic letters ‘waw’ and ‘ta’ in the Qur’anic form of /malakut/ are for emphasis and exaggeration.
Then the concept of the verse is such: the unconditioned sovereignty and ownership of everything is in the hand of Allah, and such a Lord is far from any inability, and, in this case, giving life to the dead and quickening the rotten bones and their scattered dust will not bring any difficulty for Him, since certainly all of you will return to Him, and the Resurrection is true.
- 1. Bihar, Vol. 77, P. 77
- 2. Nahjul-Balaqah, sermon 110
- 3. Ibid, sermon 133
- 4. Ibid, saying 388
- 5. Ibid, saying 349
- 6. Sahifah Sajjadiyyah, Munajat-ut-Ta’ibin, line 2
- 7. Surah Al-Baqarah, No. 2, verse 171
- 8. Ibid, verse 10
- 9. Ibid, verse 74
- 10. Surah Al-’An‘am, No. 6, verse 39
- 11. Surah Al-Mulk, No. 67, verse 15
- 12. The verse under discussion
- 13. Surah Al-Falaq, N0. 96, verse 6
- 14. Surah Al-Mu’minun, No. 23, verse 14
- 15. Nahj-ul-Balaqah, sermon 186
- 16. Some more explanation may be studied in vol. 1, pp. 271-272 of the current commentary book