( Note: The following is a summary of my notes from which we have addressed blocks of verses in the Qur'an's tenth chapter. This article should be read as a continuation of our other Study notes (Comparing Faith and its opposite) at [url] https://shamsuddinwaheed.blogspot.com/2019/07/quranic-study-notes-comparing-faith-and.html[/url] . As in previous Study NOTES, the translation has not been provided, unless otherwise stated. This allows the reader to focus on the text itself. If the reader is unable to read Arabic, they can consult the translation of their choice. In these STUDY NOTES we have avoided referencing translations because we recognize that the terms selected by the translator(s) may create limiting or even incorrect understandings.)
( Q 10: 101)
قُلِ انۡظُرُوۡا مَاذَا فِی السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ الۡاَرۡضِ ؕ وَ مَا تُغۡنِی الۡاٰیٰتُ وَ النُّذُرُ عَنۡ قَوۡمٍ لَّا یُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ
Mental sobriety is needed to attain authentic spiritual reward/guidance. As previously discussed in verse 100, those who don't use their minds to the potential available are placed in a loathsome position, even if those under that position have deluded themselves otherwise.
The Qur'an repeatedly tells us to investigate, observe, contemplate the creation. Creation itself is an evidence of the Creator. In this regards, it is also good to understand that if we see God's artistry in the world, that should make us become open minded, willing to benefit from the diversity of the world. This would destroy the attitudes of racism, xenophobia, and arrogance that we are currently seeing on the rise, even in "Muslim" circles.
It is interesting that Allah (Soobhaanahu wa ta'alaaa) says here that those without Imaan (faith) benefits neither from ayaat (signs, evidences) nor Nudhur (warnings).
This seems to indicate that Imaan itself, an awareness of God's existence, is in itself generally a prerequisite for guidance. This is speculation on the part of this writer, that this is a normative rule. This is "speculation" because we know personally about people who were self-declared atheists and agnostics who-through no effort on their own, and without believing in God initially, were guided to faith.
In the Qur'an (3:190) it says that the universal existence, the presence of night and day, serve as "signs for people of understanding " (uulil-al-baab).
It seems that we actually have a sequence of how things are normally suppose to go when it comes to these issues. The formula being IMAAN + OBSERVING=GUIDANCE.
It can also be written as OBSERVING+ IMAAN=GUIDANCE.
Thus, some can enter into faith due to encounters with "miracles", while others are inspired by intellectual arguments.
It is also interesting that in connection to "warnings", all of us are in need of that sometimes, including God's own servants who are already striving to be conscious ( Q 16:2).
فَہَلۡ یَنۡتَظِرُوۡنَ اِلَّا مِثۡلَ اَیَّامِ الَّذِیۡنَ خَلَوۡا مِنۡ
قَبۡلِہِمۡ ؕ قُلۡ فَانۡتَظِرُوۡۤا اِنِّیۡ مَعَکُمۡ مِّنَ
An address to those who reject faith and arguably for Muslims as well. Their time is coming to a conclusion, they need only wait.
I should point out here that the word for "look" (Undhur) and "wait"
(Untadhir) are from the same root, and makes logical sense, you sit around ("wait"), looking around. What will you see?
ثُمَّ نُنَجِّیۡ رُسُلَنَا وَ الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا کَذٰلِکَ ۚ حَقًّا عَلَیۡنَا نُنۡجِ الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ
You will see Allah "saving" the prophets and believers. This also carries, more importantly, the meaning that the message, the cause of Imaan will be vindicated and that the cause of rejection will perish naturally.
This interpretation is admittedly unusual but it is made keeping in mind that believers, even Prophets, are sometimes killed or die in battle. So when we see "save" , we should not read it in some SUPERMAN sense!
قُلۡ یٰۤاَیُّہَا النَّاسُ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ فِیۡ شَکٍّ مِّنۡ دِیۡنِیۡ
فَلَاۤ اَعۡبُدُ الَّذِیۡنَ تَعۡبُدُوۡنَ مِنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰہِ وَ لٰکِنۡ
اَعۡبُدُ اللّٰہَ الَّذِیۡ یَتَوَفّٰٮکُمۡ ۚۖ وَ اُمِرۡتُ اَنۡ اَکُوۡنَ
وَ اَنۡ اَقِمۡ وَجۡہَکَ لِلدِّیۡنِ حَنِیۡفًا ۚ وَ لَا تَکُوۡنَنَّ مِنَ الۡمُشۡرِکِیۡنَ
Ultimately we are to worship Allah alone. That was the cause of Prophet Muhammad and indeed of all of the Prophets (peace be upon them).
وَ لَا تَدۡعُ مِنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰہِ مَا لَا یَنۡفَعُکَ وَ لَا یَضُرُّکَ ۚ فَاِنۡ فَعَلۡتَ فَاِنَّکَ اِذًا مِّنَ الظّٰلِمِیۡنَ
وَ اِنۡ یَّمۡسَسۡکَ اللّٰہُ بِضُرٍّ فَلَا کَاشِفَ لَہٗۤ اِلَّا ہُوَ ۚ
وَ اِنۡ یُّرِدۡکَ بِخَیۡرٍ فَلَا رَآدَّ لِفَضۡلِہٖ ؕ یُصِیۡبُ بِہٖ مَنۡ
یَّشَآءُ مِنۡ عِبَادِہٖ ؕ وَ ہُوَ الۡغَفُوۡرُ الرَّحِیۡمُ
Idols bring no benefit, whereas Allah, the source behind creation, is the All-Powerful.
قُلۡ یٰۤاَیُّہَا النَّاسُ قَدۡ جَآءَکُمُ الۡحَقُّ مِنۡ رَّبِّکُمۡ ۚ
فَمَنِ اہۡتَدٰی فَاِنَّمَا یَہۡتَدِیۡ لِنَفۡسِہٖ ۚ وَ مَنۡ ضَلَّ
فَاِنَّمَا یَضِلُّ عَلَیۡہَا ۚ وَ مَاۤ اَنَا عَلَیۡکُمۡ بِوَکِیۡلٍ
The "guidance" is the Qur'an itself. It functions as an eternal warning. It is for our best interests to follow that guidance, and to be patient with regards to the Divine decrees.
It is important here to remember that the Quranic word usually translated as "patience" (Sabr) has within it the meaning of perseverance. In other words, keep going, keep striving, don't surrender one's faith, morals and relationship to the Divine.