Commentary of Surah Ikhlas: The Sublime Monotheism

Source: The Quran.Love

Introduction

According to Muhammad Abdel Haleem, in his recent translation of the Quran published by the Oxford University:

This sura is unusual in having as its title a term not mentioned in the body of the sura. Ikhlas conveys the meaning of sincerity in one’s religion and total dedication to the One true God. Be- cause of the importance of this theme in Islam, the Prophet said that this sura, despite its brevity, was equal to one—third of the Qur’an.

“Christianity,” according to a Christian theologian, Philip Cary, who is a philosophy professor at Eastern University with a concentration on Augustine of Hippo and received his Ph.D. from Yale Divinity School, “is an Abrahamic faith, of obsession with the person of Jesus of Nazareth.”

It is like Sunni Muslims can appreciate that Shiite Islam is an Islamic understanding of obsession with the persons of Hazrat Ali and Hazrat Imam Hussain.  If we can over come our obsessions, the two billion Christians and 1.6 billion Muslims can be one under the teachings of this surah, and obsess only over the Transcendent God of the Abrahamic faiths, who is Lord of Mercy and is beyond time, space and matter and cannot be encapsulated in the person of Jesus of Nazareth or any other human being.

According to Seyyed Hossein Nasr and colleagues in their recent commentary of the Quran, in introduction to Surah Ikhlas:

According to many early authorities, the Prophet said that this surah is ‘equivalent to one-third of the whole Quran’ (Al, IK, Q, R, Ts), which is understood by some to mean that the message regarding the Oneness of God is one-third of the Quran’s message. It has been reported on the authority of the Prophet’s wife ‘A’ishah that the Prophet would recite al-Ikhlas and the two immediately following it, al-Falaq and al-Nas, together while breathing into his palms, and then rub them over himself every night. The three together are thus understood to provide protection.

بِسْمِ اللَّـهِ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

112:1. Say: He, God is One,

 قُلْ هُوَ اللَّـهُ أَحَدٌ

112:2. God the eternal.

 اللَّـهُ الصَّمَدُ

112:3. He begets not nor was He begotten.

 لَمْ يَلِدْ وَلَمْ يُولَدْ

112:4. No one is comparable to Him.

 وَلَمْ يَكُن لَّهُ كُفُوًا أَحَدٌ

Commentary

112:1

“Say: He, God is One,”

For the Trinitarian Christian readers, Allah is God the Father in your tradition, so He is One and is not Triune. The Jewish understanding of God is no different from that of Islam: William Lane Craig’s Confession: ‘If we Examine Trinity, through the lens of the Old Testament, It is not Believable!’

112:2

“God the eternal.”

According to Seyyed Hossein Nasr and colleagues in their recent commentary:

Eternally Sufficient unto Himself translates the Divine  Name al-Samad, which occurs in the Quran only this once and is applied only to God. Its lexical, nontheological meaning indicates something solid and impenetrable or simply ‘not hollow’ (AH, Q, R, T). In this regard, some take al-Samad to indicate something that is beyond all comprehension (My). Theologically al-Samad is interpreted by some as an allusion to the Primary or Initial Cause of all things, an eternally self—sufficient independent Being Who continues to exist after His creation has ceased to exist, “the One Who has always been and will always be” (Ts). According to al-Zamakhshari, in this context, ‘Al-Samad is a verb taking the meaning of the passive participle, the One to Whom one betakes oneself (man sumida ilayhi) when one seeks Him (idha qasadahu). And He is the Master Who is Sought (al-sayyid al-masmud) in [all] needs.’

112:3

“He begets not nor was He begotten.”

Suggested reading for this verse:

How Islam has Influenced Christian understanding of God

God of Islam: God of Nature and the Creator of our Universe

Third Council of Constantinople (680-681): Does Jesus has one nature / operation or two?

Is Jesus a Man, a God or a Hybrid, Just an Academic Pursuit?

Two natures of Jesus: another Christian mystery!

Refuting William Lane Craig’s: ‘The Birth of God’‏

Understanding the Nature of Jesus is Always a Heresy

112:4

“No one is comparable to Him.”

If we read the commentary of Surah Al Fatihah: The Opening, along with what has been linked above then it becomes obvious that ‘No one is comparable to Him.’

9 replies

  1. Say, He God is One,
    112:2. God the eternal.
    112:3. He begets not nor was He begotten.
    112:4. No one is comparable to Him.

    What does it mean from Progressive Muslim.

    God is One,but God has many spirit. God’s spirit is every where.

    Indeed We have created man, and We know whatever thoughts his inner self develops, and We are closer to him than (his) jugular vein,Q.50:16.

    It means that Allah exist in all human being. He knows everything what people does.

    Our Question; Is Allah singular or Plural ?

    Allah is a singular, but Allah’s spirit are plural. as mention above; “We”. Allah is Powerful. So the spirit of Allah exist every human. That is why Allah say; “We”.

    Jibril is Holy and unseen, but Jibril can be like Human too.

    In other words, Allah is a single, “Esa”, but Allah’s spirit are many.

    What do you think my understanding?
    Am I wrong? If its wrong, please tell me.
    Do not delate!
    All ❤️

  2. Somi, you cannot create a religion and still call it Islam. Have a different name for your new religion. Since your now taking it upon yourself to correct the word of God. Have you nothing better to do with your time? Say, God is One. He is Eternal. He begets not, nor was He begotten. No one is Comparable to Him.

  3. Riffat— a good Muslim never mock and insult
    Other, he respects different thought or opinion
    But only the extremist Muslim who mock and insult others belief, even he persecutes others badly.

    Ahmadiyyah Women always respect and love others even they do not follow Ahmadiyyah’s faith, Is it great?
    Are you ahmadiyyah?

    All ❤️
    Hopefully he do not delate my respond!

    • Somi, I An by the Grace of God an Ahmadiyya Muslim and by no means was I mocking or insulting you. I was seriously trying to tell you that you cannot correct the word of God because there is no mistakes in the word of God. The word of God is deliberate and percise and it cannot and would not be changed since that is how God meant it to be and you were trying to change it.

      • If you are a women Muslim, alhamdulillah, I still want to discuss with you, do not try to rude like a extremist Muslim.
        I do not intend to change the word of God, it is sin, What I try to tell to you all is to change the false interpretation of Islam by the extremist wahhabi clerics who always persecute Ahmadiyyah till to day.
        The result of the interpretation of Islam by extremist wahhabi have created conflict, civil war, persecute Ahmadiyyah, Sufi and other minority religion.
        You really misunderstood , Riffat.

        For example.
        1. Wahhabi extremist clerics say; wearing burqa or hijab is obligatory, they impose women to wear Hijab, if not, will put to Jail. It is wrong. I correct it.
        Burga or Hijab is not obligatory, it is a suggestion for women who live in desert and conflict to protect women from sand storm and kidnapping by unknown man.

        2. Wahhabi extremist say; Jesus was a prophet.
        I say: Jesus was a Prophet and a Holy Spirit.

        There are so many wrong interpretation by extremist wahhabi clerics.
        If I am wrong please correct me with the word of God, do not correct me without God word or your word etc. Ok

        May God bless you Riffat
        All our ❤️

      • Yes, there are many wrong interpretations ‘out there’. One wrong interpretation for instance is that we can eat just a little bit of pork, drink just a little bit of wine, and not wear hijab because some Islamophobic guys may get scared…

  4. Zia, I would like to tell you
    You are a wonderful person or Ahmadiyyah Muslim
    You provide so many excellent articlesto educate young Muslim with various subject, not only Islamic subject but other religious subject as well.
    So young Muslim have a broad knowledge of religion.

    In 21th century, we do not want to brainwash our young Muslim to become fanatic or bigotry as the extremist Wahhabi clerics did.

    I try my part to give young Muslim how to follow Islam in 21th century. Science and technology have a huge impact to the life of million people on earth. Islam teaching should be interpretation in contex of Modren Time. In order is a religion of Progressive.

    Thank Zia, may God bless your excellent effort, Amen
    All our ❤️
    Progressive Muslim is a champion of change

  5. I agree with much of what Romi says, but perhaps he is on the wrong site for his view. However, we should listen to alternative opinions, because we should never stop learning. Religion is about interpretation, and it isn’t black or white. There are numerous interpretations, as the sky comes in various shades of blue or grey. Who is to know which interpretation is correct? Even learned scholars vary in their opinions, and the majority don’t understand either the language or are literate enough to understand the context of written work, so they follow their leaders and family traditions. Periodic reform is necessary as the world is constantly changing and humans have to adjust with it. The main thing is to understand and live by the higher values, to do good and avoid what may hurt others.

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