Sura/Chapter:

Verse:    Count: 31
Tafseer/Commentary:
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Translations:
76: Al-Insan - الانسان

76:1
[ Original ]
بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ هَلْ أَتَىٰ عَلَى الْإِنْسَانِ حِينٌ مِنَ الدَّهْرِ لَمْ يَكُنْ شَيْئًا مَذْكُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Has there not been over Man a long period of Time, when he was nothing - (not even) mentioned?
[ Saheeh International ]
Has there [not] come upon man a period of time when he was not a thing [even] mentioned?
Tafseer Commentary

5830 The undoubted fact is mentioned in the form of a question, to get the assent of man. It is certain that the physical world existed long before man was ever heard of or mentioned, as geological records prove. It is also true that the spiritual world existed long before man came on the scene: see 2:30-31. Man is here taken in a generic sense.

5831 Dahr is Time as a whole, or for a long period. Time used to be deified by the Pagan Arabs, as explained in the Introduction to this Surah. An analogy can be found in the Greek ideas connected with Chronos or Kronos, themselves a blend of different myths. Kronos (or Time), they said, was the father of Zeus himself.


76:2
[ Original ]
إِنَّا خَلَقْنَا الْإِنْسَانَ مِنْ نُطْفَةٍ أَمْشَاجٍ نَبْتَلِيهِ فَجَعَلْنَاهُ سَمِيعًا بَصِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Verily We created Man from a drop of mingled sperm, in order to try him: So We gave him (the gifts), of Hearing and Sight.
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, We created man from a sperm-drop mixture that We may try him; and We made him hearing and seeing.
Tafseer Commentary

5832 Mingled: the female ovum has to be fertilised with the male sperm before a new animal can be born. Man as an animal has this humble origin. But he has been given the gift of certain faculdes of receiving instruction (typified by Hearing) and of intellectual and spiritual insight (typified by Sight). His life has therefore a meaning: with a certain amount of free will, he is to be Allah's vicegerent on earth (2:30). But he must be trained and tried, and that is the whole problem of human life.


76:3
[ Original ]
إِنَّا هَدَيْنَاهُ السَّبِيلَ إِمَّا شَاكِرًا وَإِمَّا كَفُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
We showed him the Way: whether he be grateful or ungrateful (rests on his will).
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, We guided him to the way, be he grateful or be he ungrateful.
Tafseer Commentary

5833 Besides the gift of the faculties, Man has been shown the Way by means of Revelation, through men of the highest spiritual standing. If he is grateful, he will accept Guidance, be of the Righteous, and join the company of the Blessed. If not, he puts chains round himself, thus burdening himself with sin, and gets into the Blazing Fire of Punishment. See next verse. His choice rests on his will. (R).


76:4
[ Original ]
إِنَّا أَعْتَدْنَا لِلْكَافِرِينَ سَلَاسِلَ وَأَغْلَالًا وَسَعِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
For the Rejecters we have prepared chains, yokes, and a Blazing Fire.
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, We have prepared for the disbelievers chains and shackles and a blaze.
Tafseer Commentary

5834 Cf. 13:5; 34:33 and 40:71. [Eds.].


76:5
[ Original ]
إِنَّ الْأَبْرَارَ يَشْرَبُونَ مِنْ كَأْسٍ كَانَ مِزَاجُهَا كَافُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
As to the Righteous, they shall drink of a Cup (of Wine) mixed with Kafur,-
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, the righteous will drink from a cup [of wine] whose mixture is of Kafur,
Tafseer Commentary

5835 Kafur is literally Camphor. It is a fountain in the Realms of Bliss. It is a seasoning added to the Cup of pure, beatific Wine, which causes no intoxication (56:18-19), but stands for all that is wholesome, agreeable, and refreshing. Camphor is cool and refreshing, and is given as a soothing tonic in Eastern medicine. In minute doses its odour and flavour are also agreeable. (R).


76:6
[ Original ]
عَيْنًا يَشْرَبُ بِهَا عِبَادُ اللَّهِ يُفَجِّرُونَهَا تَفْجِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
A Fountain where the Devotees of Allah do drink, making it flow in unstinted abundance.
[ Saheeh International ]
A spring of which the [righteous] servants of Allah will drink; they will make it gush forth in force [and abundance].

76:7
[ Original ]
يُوفُونَ بِالنَّذْرِ وَيَخَافُونَ يَوْمًا كَانَ شَرُّهُ مُسْتَطِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They perform (their) vows, and they fear a Day whose evil flies far and wide.
[ Saheeh International ]
They [are those who] fulfill [their] vows and fear a Day whose evil will be widespread.
Tafseer Commentary

5836 They: i.e., the Righteous: they are known in the present life by the virtues symbolically described in verses 7-10, and in the life of the Hereafter they will enjoy the Bliss symbolically described in verses 11-22.

5837 Cf. 22:29. The vows must be vows of spiritual service, which of course includes service to humanity, such as is mentioned in the next verse. They are Devotees of Allah, and they must perform all vows and contracts ( 5:1 and n. 682 ). Vows of the Pagan sort, savouring of a sort of "bribe" to the Deity, are not approved.

5838 That is, they prepare for the Judgement to come, where the effects of Sin will not be transitory but far-reaching.


76:8
[ Original ]
وَيُطْعِمُونَ الطَّعَامَ عَلَىٰ حُبِّهِ مِسْكِينًا وَيَتِيمًا وَأَسِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And they feed, for the love of Allah, the indigent, the orphan, and the captive,-
[ Saheeh International ]
And they give food in spite of love for it to the needy, the orphan, and the captive,
Tafseer Commentary

5839 The captive: when taken literally, it refers to the old state of things when captives of war had to earn their own food, or their own redemption; even ordinary prisoners in jail for criminal offences often starved unless food was provided for them by private friends or from their own earnings. But there is a further symbolic meaning, which applies to the indigent, the orphans, and the captives, viz. those who are so in a spiritual sense: those have no mental or moral resources, or have no one to look after them, or are held down in social or moral or economic captivity. They hunger for spiritual food, or perhaps their appetite is deadened, but the Righteous understand and supply their real needs. It has also been held that "captives" include dumb animals who are under subjection to man; they must be properly fed, housed, and looked after; and the righteous man does not forget them.


76:9
[ Original ]
إِنَّمَا نُطْعِمُكُمْ لِوَجْهِ اللَّهِ لَا نُرِيدُ مِنْكُمْ جَزَاءً وَلَا شُكُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
(Saying),"We feed you for the sake of Allah alone: no reward do we desire from you, nor thanks.
[ Saheeh International ]
[Saying], "We feed you only for the countenance of Allah. We wish not from you reward or gratitude.
Tafseer Commentary

5840 These words need not be actually uttered. They express the true motives of pious and unpretentious Charity.


76:10
[ Original ]
إِنَّا نَخَافُ مِنْ رَبِّنَا يَوْمًا عَبُوسًا قَمْطَرِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"We only fear a Day of distressful Wrath from the side of our Lord."
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, We fear from our Lord a Day austere and distressful."
Tafseer Commentary

5841 It is a Day of Wrath for sin and evil. But the truly righteous are not selfrighteous. They have the fear of Allah in their minds: they know they are human, and they fear lest they should be found wanting in the sight of Allah. But Allah in His Mercy gives them a bountiful Reward.


76:11
[ Original ]
فَوَقَاهُمُ اللَّهُ شَرَّ ذَٰلِكَ الْيَوْمِ وَلَقَّاهُمْ نَضْرَةً وَسُرُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
But Allah will deliver them from the evil of that Day, and will shed over them a Light of Beauty and (blissful) Joy.
[ Saheeh International ]
So Allah will protect them from the evil of that Day and give them radiance and happiness
Tafseer Commentary

5842 Cf. 75:22-23.


76:12
[ Original ]
وَجَزَاهُمْ بِمَا صَبَرُوا جَنَّةً وَحَرِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And because they were patient and constant, He will reward them with a Garden and (garments of) silk.
[ Saheeh International ]
And will reward them for what they patiently endured [with] a garden [in Paradise] and silk [garments].
Tafseer Commentary

5843 Cf. 22:23.


76:13
[ Original ]
مُتَّكِئِينَ فِيهَا عَلَى الْأَرَائِكِ ۖ لَا يَرَوْنَ فِيهَا شَمْسًا وَلَا زَمْهَرِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Reclining in the (Garden) on raised thrones, they will see there neither the sun's (excessive heat) nor (the moon's) excessive cold.
[ Saheeh International ]
[They will be] reclining therein on adorned couches. They will not see therein any [burning] sun or [freezing] cold.
Tafseer Commentary

5844 Cf. 18:31.

5845 The sun and the moon as we know them will be no longer there. It will be a new world on a different plane. But to give us an idea of comfort we recall the excessive heat of the sun especially in tropical climates, and the excessive cold of the moon especially in northern climates, and we negate them both. That is, the temperature will be just that delightful one that is most agreeable to our sensations as we know them now. The moon is not mentioned, but Zamharir (excessive cold) is sometimes used for the moon. (R).


76:14
[ Original ]
وَدَانِيَةً عَلَيْهِمْ ظِلَالُهَا وَذُلِّلَتْ قُطُوفُهَا تَذْلِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And the shades of the (Garden) will come low over them, and the bunches (of fruit), there, will hang low in humility.
[ Saheeh International ]
And near above them are its shades, and its [fruit] to be picked will be lowered in compliance.
Tafseer Commentary

5846 Without sun and moon there will of course be no shade in the literal sense of the word. But for full comfort, there will be sheltering shade for rest and change from whatever light there be. But the whole idea here is that of humility. Even the shadows show humility: cf. 13:15. So does the fruit in hanging low for man. Man has now reached the height of his dignity. (R).


76:15
[ Original ]
وَيُطَافُ عَلَيْهِمْ بِآنِيَةٍ مِنْ فِضَّةٍ وَأَكْوَابٍ كَانَتْ قَوَارِيرَا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And amongst them will be passed round vessels of silver and goblets of crystal,-
[ Saheeh International ]
And there will be circulated among them vessels of silver and cups having been [created] clear [as glass],
Tafseer Commentary

5847 Cf. 43:71, where "dishes and goblets of gold" are mentioned. The idea conveyed is that of rarity, preciousness, and spotless splendour. (R).


76:16
[ Original ]
قَوَارِيرَ مِنْ فِضَّةٍ قَدَّرُوهَا تَقْدِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Crystal-clear, made of silver: they will determine the measure thereof (according to their wishes).
[ Saheeh International ]
Clear glasses [made] from silver of which they have determined the measure.
Tafseer Commentary

5848 That is, silver polished and white, and shining like crystal.


76:17
[ Original ]
وَيُسْقَوْنَ فِيهَا كَأْسًا كَانَ مِزَاجُهَا زَنْجَبِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And they will be given to drink there of a Cup (of Wine) mixed with Zanjabil,-
[ Saheeh International ]
And they will be given to drink a cup [of wine] whose mixture is of ginger
Tafseer Commentary

5849 Cf. above, 76:5-6, and n. 5835, where the Cup of Kafur (Camphor) was mentioned for coolness and refreshment to the Righteous, who had just passed the great Event of Judgement. The second stage is symbolised by verses 12-14, when they enter the Garden in Garments of Silk, and find that their former humility in the probationary life is rewarded with high honour in the new world they have entered. The third stage is in verses 15-21, where they settle down in Bliss, with Garments of fine silk and heavy brocades, with Ornaments and Jewels, with an ordered Feast of set service, and the Cup of Zanjabil. This literally means Ginger. In Eastern medicine Ginger is administered to give warmth to the body and zest to the taste; this is appropriate for the Royal Feast which is now figured forth. (R).


76:18
[ Original ]
عَيْنًا فِيهَا تُسَمَّىٰ سَلْسَبِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
A fountain there, called Salsabil.
[ Saheeh International ]
[From] a fountain within Paradise named Salsabeel.
Tafseer Commentary

5850 Salsabil literally means: "Seek the Way". The Way is now open to the presence of the Most High. The Banquet is spread. Get thyself ready. It is a "Realm Magnificent" (verse 20) in a new spiritual world. (R).


76:19
[ Original ]
وَيَطُوفُ عَلَيْهِمْ وِلْدَانٌ مُخَلَّدُونَ إِذَا رَأَيْتَهُمْ حَسِبْتَهُمْ لُؤْلُؤًا مَنْثُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And round about them will (serve) youths of perpetual (freshness): If thou seest them, thou wouldst think them scattered Pearls.
[ Saheeh International ]
There will circulate among them young boys made eternal. When you see them, you would think them [as beautiful as] scattered pearls.
Tafseer Commentary

5851 Cf. 56:17 and n. 5231.

5852 Pearls for beauty and splendour: scattered, because they are moving to and fro all round the Banquet.


76:20
[ Original ]
وَإِذَا رَأَيْتَ ثَمَّ رَأَيْتَ نَعِيمًا وَمُلْكًا كَبِيرًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And when thou lookest, it is there thou wilt see a Bliss and a Realm Magnificent.
[ Saheeh International ]
And when you look there [in Paradise], you will see pleasure and great dominion.

76:21
[ Original ]
عَالِيَهُمْ ثِيَابُ سُنْدُسٍ خُضْرٌ وَإِسْتَبْرَقٌ ۖ وَحُلُّوا أَسَاوِرَ مِنْ فِضَّةٍ وَسَقَاهُمْ رَبُّهُمْ شَرَابًا طَهُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Upon them will be green Garments of fine silk and heavy brocade, and they will be adorned with Bracelets of silver; and their Lord will give to them to drink of a Wine Pure and Holy.
[ Saheeh International ]
Upon the inhabitants will be green garments of fine silk and brocade. And they will be adorned with bracelets of silver, and their Lord will give them a purifying drink.
Tafseer Commentary

5853 Cf. 18:31. The bracelets are there said to be of gold.

5854 This would seem to be the culmination of the honour which the Blessed receive at the Royal and Divine Banquet. The words in the next verse express the sort of speech which will make the Guest a denizen of Heaven. (R).


76:22
[ Original ]
إِنَّ هَٰذَا كَانَ لَكُمْ جَزَاءً وَكَانَ سَعْيُكُمْ مَشْكُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"Verily this is a Reward for you, and your Endeavour is accepted and recognised."
[ Saheeh International ]
[And it will be said], "Indeed, this is for you a reward, and your effort has been appreciated."

76:23
[ Original ]
إِنَّا نَحْنُ نَزَّلْنَا عَلَيْكَ الْقُرْآنَ تَنْزِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
It is We Who have sent down the Qur'an to thee by stages.
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, it is We who have sent down to you, [O Muhammad], the Qur'an progressively.
Tafseer Commentary

5855 The Qur'an was being revealed stage by stage as the occasion demanded and at the date of this Surah it was still one of the earlier stages. Persecution, abuse, and false charges were being levelled against the man of Allah, but he is bidden to stand firm and do his duty. In a minor degree this applies to all of us who suffer in the cause of Truth.


76:24
[ Original ]
فَاصْبِرْ لِحُكْمِ رَبِّكَ وَلَا تُطِعْ مِنْهُمْ آثِمًا أَوْ كَفُورًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Therefore be patient with constancy to the Command of thy Lord, and hearken not to the sinner or the ingrate among them.
[ Saheeh International ]
So be patient for the decision of your Lord and do not obey from among them a sinner or ungrateful [disbeliever].

76:25
[ Original ]
وَاذْكُرِ اسْمَ رَبِّكَ بُكْرَةً وَأَصِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And celebrate the name or thy Lord morning and evening,
[ Saheeh International ]
And mention the name of your Lord [in prayer] morning and evening
Tafseer Commentary

5856 Three methods of Prayer and Devotion are mentioned: (1) to remember and celebrate the Holy Name of Allah always; (2) to spend a part of the night in humble prostration; and (3) to glorify Him in the long hours of a weary night of waiting and watching. As to (1), "morning and evening" means all the waking hours of our life, but in the special hours of morning and evening the physical world without us, and the inner world within us, combine to make us specially receptive of spiritual influences. The "name" of Allah includes His attributes, as a locked golden casket might include priceless jewels. Anyone may carry the casket, even though he may not be worthy to handle the jewels. If he carries the casket, he is in potential possession of the jewels, and he hopes some time to get the key which opens the jewels to him. So the tyro, who celebrates the Holy Name of Allah, hopes some day to see the "Face" of Allah and be blessed with the privilege of proximity to His Person. For (2) and (3) see next note. (R).


76:26
[ Original ]
وَمِنَ اللَّيْلِ فَاسْجُدْ لَهُ وَسَبِّحْهُ لَيْلًا طَوِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And part of the night, prostrate thyself to Him; and glorify Him a long night through.
[ Saheeh International ]
And during the night prostrate to Him and exalt Him a long [part of the] night.
Tafseer Commentary

5857 See last note. (2) Humble prostration to Allah means some visible mode or symbol of dedication. That is best done at night, when the soul, free from worldly occupations, is alone with its God. (3) The weary hours of a long night are no longer weary, but become full of meaning when we join in concert with the whole Creation, which glorifies Allah: 57:1.


76:27
[ Original ]
إِنَّ هَٰؤُلَاءِ يُحِبُّونَ الْعَاجِلَةَ وَيَذَرُونَ وَرَاءَهُمْ يَوْمًا ثَقِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
As to these, they love the fleeting life, and put away behind them a Day (that will be) hard.
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, these [disbelievers] love the immediate and leave behind them a grave Day.
Tafseer Commentary

5858 Fleeting life: Cf. 75:20. They: the immediate reference was to the Pagan Quraysh; the general reference is to the Unbelievers of all ages. They reject, or at least put away the thought of, a Hereafter, a Day that will be hard, for the easy pleasures of a fleeting life.


76:28
[ Original ]
نَحْنُ خَلَقْنَاهُمْ وَشَدَدْنَا أَسْرَهُمْ ۖ وَإِذَا شِئْنَا بَدَّلْنَا أَمْثَالَهُمْ تَبْدِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
It is We Who created them, and We have made their joints strong; but, when We will, We can substitute the like of them by a complete change.
[ Saheeh International ]
We have created them and strengthened their forms, and when We will, We can change their likenesses with [complete] alteration.
Tafseer Commentary

5859 Allah has not only created men, but "made their joints strong", i.e., given them the power and strength to withstand the temptations of Evil and stand firmly in the Padi of Right.

5860 If, in spite of Allah's loving care, any particular men or group of men, misuse their powers or wilfully disobey Allah's Law, Allah will set them aside, and substitute others in their place, with like powers. Allah's gifts are free, but let no one think that he can monopolise them or misuse them without being called to answer for the trust. And the man of Allah must not be discouraged by the whole world being at some moment completely against him. Allah can in a moment make a complete change. Either the same men that fought against him will be his zealous adherents, or another generation will spring up, which will carry the flag of Righteousness to victory. Allah's Will and Plan work in their own good time.


76:29
[ Original ]
إِنَّ هَٰذِهِ تَذْكِرَةٌ ۖ فَمَنْ شَاءَ اتَّخَذَ إِلَىٰ رَبِّهِ سَبِيلًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
This is an admonition: Whosoever will, let him take a (straight) Path to his Lord.
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, this is a reminder, so he who wills may take to his Lord a way.

76:30
[ Original ]
وَمَا تَشَاءُونَ إِلَّا أَنْ يَشَاءَ اللَّهُ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ عَلِيمًا حَكِيمًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
But ye will not, except as Allah wills; for Allah is full of Knowledge and Wisdom.
[ Saheeh International ]
And you do not will except that Allah wills. Indeed, Allah is ever Knowing and Wise.
Tafseer Commentary

5861 Man in himself is weak; he must seek Allah's Grace; without it he can do nothing; with it he can do all. For Allah knows all things, and His wisdom comprehends the good of all.


76:31
[ Original ]
يُدْخِلُ مَنْ يَشَاءُ فِي رَحْمَتِهِ ۚ وَالظَّالِمِينَ أَعَدَّ لَهُمْ عَذَابًا أَلِيمًا
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He will admit to His Mercy whom He will; But the wrong-doers,- for them has He prepared a grievous Penalty.
[ Saheeh International ]
He admits whom He wills into His mercy; but the wrongdoers - He has prepared for them a painful punishment.
Tafseer Commentary

5862 That is according to His just and wise Plan. If the will is right, it obtains Allah's Grace and Mercy. If the will of man rejects Allah, man must suffer the Penalty.


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