Interpretation of the Seven oft repeated verses
The Almighty Allah says:
وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَاكَ سَبْعًا مِنْ الْمَثَانِي وَالْقُرْآنَ الْعَظِيمَ.
And certainly We have given you seven of the oft-repeated (verses) and the grand Quran. (Surah Hijr 15:87)
It is well known among the scholars that ‘seven of the oft-repeated (verses)’ is Surah Fatiha and it is said to be ‘oft repeated’ because it is recited at least twice in every Prayer or it is between Allah and His creatures or these words should come repeatedly or it is half the praise of Allah and half of it is supplication or because it was revealed twice.
Some have said that ‘seven’ is Surah Fatiha and ‘oft repeated’ is the Quran as stories and news are mentioned in it. Others have said ‘seven oft-repeated’ are the seven chapters at the beginning of the Quran because in addition to the laws news repeatedly occur in them and some say that the whole Quran is ‘seven of the oft-repeated’ one because it is divided into seven parts.
Ali Ibne Ibrahim, Furat, Saduq and Ayyashi have narrated from Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s.) that he said: We are those ‘oft-repeated’ given to the Prophet by Allah we are the proof of Allah on the earth for the people who live in different conditions.
Those who know us, knows us, and those who don’t know us, then after the death whatever is before him will know us and according to another tradition those who know us then he knows us with proof and belief on the earth and he will see us with the eyes of belief in the hereafter and those persons who do not recognize us, then Hell is before them and they will enter it.
In Basair the above words are narrated from Imam Moosa Kazim (a.s.) and Ayyashi has narrated that people asked Imam Sadiq (a.s.) about the explanation of this verse. The Hazrat replied that its apparent meaning is Surah Hamd and inwardly it refers to us and everyone of us after their father is Imam.
Imam Moosa Kazim (a.s.) has narrated that ‘seven oft –repeated’ and ‘the grand Quran’ is Hazrat Sahibul Amr (a.s.).1
- 1. The writer says: It is not easy for everyone to understand these traditions as many profound concepts are explained therein because the figure seven is not according to their numbers. This can be explained in certain ways.
Firstly the number seven would be in accordance with the seven names of the Infallibles—Ali, Fatima, Hasan, Husain, Baqir, Ja’far and Moosa Kazim (a.s.).
Secondly the figure seven denotes the fact that mostly the dispersal of knowledge was from the seven persons till Imam Ridha (a.s.). Due to severe Taqaiyyah no other knowledge was acquired from Imam Zainul Aabedeen (a.s.) except Duas (supplications). After Imam Ridha (a.s.) the Holy Imams (a.s.) spent their life in Taqaiyyah or in prison. Little knowledge was acquired from these Imams in comparison to other Imams. That is why they are not counted. Due to these two reasons ‘masani’ is from this point of view that these persons were attached to Quran by the Holy Prophet (S) by saying: I leave among you two weighty things, the book of Allah and my Ahle Bayt.
So the saying of the Imams (a.s.) that we are ‘masani’ means we are those whom the Prophet (S) has attached to the Quran and made us his second. As Ibne Babawayh has said that Allah made them attached to the Holy Prophet (S) or may be from this point of view that, those people had praised Allah or that Allah has Praised them. Or from this point of view that those people are double sided. One side is holiness and spiritualism with which they were in contact with angels and acquired knowledge through revelations and inspirations and on the other side they are human beings, in their form, species and some qualities similar to human beings, for that reason they benefit people with knowledge as stated by us earlier.
Thirdly the number seven after Masani (double) becomes fourteen because ‘Sana’ means twice. Then the Prophet from one side is the giver and from another not the giver, because from the side of Prophethood and unlimited perfection he is a boon, which has been bestowed, and from the other side he is a person who has bestowed this. Or that including the Quran they become fourteen but there is reservation in this.
Fourthly, Saba Masani may be Surah Hamd, meaning that Allah has made Surah Fatiha equal to the whole Quran. Because this Surah mentions us and we and our path has been praised and it flays our enemies and their way. According to many traditions it is the path of those great people and ‘those upon whom is Thy wrath’ are those who have usurped their rights and ‘the astrayed ones’ refers to those who follow the usurpers and accept them as their leaders. Therefore it means that this Surah was revealed for them and it has more excellence over the whole Quran. Among all these explanations, as far as I think, this one is more logical, clear and apparent.