Thursday, June 26, 2008

LIGHT UPON LIGHT: Surah al-Noor, Verses 35-40

The video isn't much (I'm not sure what language the translation is in), but this is possibly the best recitation of Surah Al-Noor I've ever heard. It's recaited by the amazing Shaykh Mishary Rashid Al-Afasy... just close your eyes and let the beauty and warmth of Allah's words wash over you... cleansing your heart.

The translation of what he is reading is below.

NOTE: Verses in the Quran do not necessarily tell a story, but many times [as in this case] Allah conveys a message through parables which have many layers. You can look at it/or read it at face value, but understand that the true meaning [in this case] lies in realizing the value of light (ie knowledge), and accepting that knowledge is not something we humans can attain through our own, but is, like everything else, given by and through Allah's will. This is by no means a full explanation of the verses below; rather its a very basic explanation. Please pick up a Qur'an with extensive commentary to explain the verses in their entirety. [Literally, the explanation runs about a four pages long!]

Finally, the translation:

"Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth. The Parable of His Light is as if there were a Niche and within it a Lamp: the Lamp enclosed in Glass: the glass as it were a brilliant star: Lit from a blessed Tree, an Olive, neither of the east nor of the west, whose oil is well-nigh luminous, though fire scarce touched it: Light upon Light! Allah doth guide whom He will to His Light: Allah doth set forth Parables for men: and Allah doth know all things.

(Lit is such a Light) in houses, which Allah hath permitted to be raised to honour; for the celebration, in them, of His name: In them is He glorified in the mornings and in the evenings, (again and again),-

By men whom neither traffic nor merchandise can divert from the Remembrance of Allah, nor from regular Prayer, nor from the practice of regular Charity: Their (only) fear is for the Day when hearts and eyes will be transformed (in a world wholly new),-

That Allah may reward them according to the best of their deeds, and add even more for them out of His Grace: for Allah doth provide for those whom He will, without measure.

But the Unbelievers,- their deeds are like a mirage in sandy deserts, which the man parched with thirst mistakes for water; until when he comes up to it, he finds it to be nothing: But he finds Allah (ever) with him, and Allah will pay him his account: and Allah is swift in taking account.

Or (the Unbelievers' state) is like the depths of darkness in a vast deep ocean, overwhelmed with billow topped by billow, topped by (dark) clouds: depths of darkness, one above another: if a man stretches out his hands, he can hardly see it! for any to whom Allah giveth not light, there is no light!"

- Surah al-Noor, Verses 35-40

No comments: