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    Concise Principles in Tafseer and The Science of the Qur'aan Part 1

    Concise benefits in Tafseer and The Science of the Qur'aan(1)

    Bismillah Was Salaatu Was Salaamu 'alaa Rasoolillahi

    Ammaa Ba'd:

    This was a short series of benefits in tafseer and the science of the Qu'aan that i had started sending out via twitter in the first few days of Ramadhaan and continue to send out to this day.

    I saw that is would be beneficial to send it out here that the benefit may be more general

    Wa Billahit Tawfeeq

    Concerning 'Asbaabun Nuzool' (reasons for revelation of verses or surahs in the qur'aan)

    1. Types of Revelation

    Imaamus Suyooti mentions:

    Al Ja'bari mentions:

    The Verses of the Qur'aan were revealed in two ways:

    1. That which was revealed without a known cause

    2. That which was revealed on the basis of an occurance or question"

    (Al Itqaan 1/82)

    Thus this second category has what is known as a 'Sababun nuzool' (reason for revelation)

    The 'asbaabun nuzool' (plural) must be reported with an authentic chain of narration for it to be considered.

    Though the asbaabun nuzool help us to understand the context of the verse the scholars mention another principle and that is:

    ' Al 'Ibratu bi 'Umoomil lafdh laa bi khusoosis sabab' (meaning that the thing that is taken into consideration is the general nature of the wording of the text, and not only the specific reason it was revealed for)

    Thus as Shaikhul islam and others have mentioned the ayah is applicable to anyone whose circumstances resemble that of the one the verse was revealed concerning

    Wallahu a'lam


    Concise principles in Tafseer and The Science of the Qur'aan (2)

    The ‘Asbaabun Nuzool’ (reasons for revelation) are of two types:

    1. ‘Sareeh’ (clear and unequivocal)

    This is when the companion states ‘the reason for the revelation of such and such a verse is…’ or he mentions an occurrence or a question posed to the messenger then he or she says “…then Allah revealed” or “ Allah revealed.

    Concerning the statement ‘then Allah revealed’ on rare occasions this is mentioned concerning an occurrence that is not the cause for the revelation of the mentioned verse but this is rare. Similarly the statement of a companion ‘we used to hold that such and such a verse was revealed due to this’ while it overwhelms our suspicions that this is the reason for its revelation, that is not always clear cut and those instances and their narrations should be correctly followed up and analysed.

    2. ‘Ghair Sareeh’ (Unclear)

    This is when a companion says ‘ This verse was revealed concerning such and such…’ this statement could relate to the reason for revelation, but it could also be a reference to the tafseer or explanation of the verse. That is to say, for example ‘this verse was revealed concerning the expiation of a vow’, we understand that the intent is that the subject matter of the verse is such and such.

    There is a subtle difference between the first type (Sareeh) and this one. In the first the companion clearly mentions ‘Sababun Nuzooli hadhihil Ayah.. (The reason for the revelation of the ayah is…) while here the companion says: ‘Nazalat Haadihil Ayah fee kadhaa’ (This verse was revealed concerning… the word to consider here is his statement ‘concerning’. Does he intent by this statement the reason for revelation or does he intend merely to discuss and mention its subject matter.

    And the examples of these categories of ‘Asbaabun Nuzool’ in the books of tafseer (exegesis of the qur’aan) are many.

    Wallahu A’lam


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