Surah al-Najm (The Star) is a wa-prefixed surah like other 14 surahs in the Quran. Wa is an Arabic letter that does not only represent sound but used as an Arabic conjunction meaning “and” which connects two or more verses, and two or more phrases and words in the verses. It also serves as informal oaths of God denoting “By” being at the beginning of 15 surahs as well as there are 2 occurrences being even in the middle of surahs (74:32 and 86:11) adding to total 17 occurrences in the Quran, while there are also 7 formal oaths of God denoting “I swear by” in it to affirm the truth in His certain statements.
However, this surah is one of the most misinterpreted surahs, but it is very crucial for us to understand that God Himself has inspired the Quran all at once to His servant coming down from the Horizon of the High to the ultimate point (53:4-18), while He has blessed us with the knowledge to identify a set of verses in the Quran associated with the event letting us know that He has revealed it as a guidance for mankind and statute book in the month of Ramadan (2:185), which is the clear scripture sent down in a blessed night clarifying every wise matter (44:1-4) completing the night long process involving the angels and the Gabriel (97:1-5) taking His prophet to the ultimate point (17:1). Even the set of verses involved with the event can be confirmed with the Quran’s code as shown in the table below as an explicit proof not to have any doubt:
Note: The placement of Quran in prophet’s soul has been mentioned in 26 verses across 5 surahs while surah 53 is so important for us to reflect as God Himself has inspired it into His servant describing the event in 15 verses including the place and environment while He has been in another descent, while we also know that He came down first to earth at an appointment with Moses and gave him 10 commandments.
Details of the surah
Surah Al-Najm is a short surah but if we can reflect to its verses, especially the messages of its 15 verses from 4 to 18 may help us to understand that God has not commanded us to celebrate a night of the Power to have a reward equivalent to thousand months from Him except a tradition that came down to us from the past. However, here is an attempt to detail out its verses in the English translation going through its Arabic text and grammar adding subtitles to be sure where there is a shift of the message within the surah including short notes below to understand better the messages in the surah:
- By the star when it has gone down (53:1).
Note: A statement of God’s oath referring to the shooting star which is a natural phenomenon occasionally visible to the people, but referring this verse to the journey of the prophet when he has been taken to the ultimate point to receive the whole Quran is a misinterpretation as his journey being specific, is covered in another verse (17:1).
- Your friend (Muhammad) has not gone astray, nor has he erred (53:2). Nor does he speak from the desire (53:3).
Note: By taking oath referring to the shooting star God has affirmed the prophet’s contemporaries even the people of subsequent generations that what the prophet is reciting to them is not from his desire so that they can believe in him and in what is being recited to them.
- It is not but an inspiration what was inspired (53:4). The Most Powerful has taught him (53:5). Possessor of all power that He has established (53:6). And He has been in the Horizon of the High (53:7). Then He had approached that He has come down (53:8). So, He has been at a closer distance or nearer (53:9). Then He has inspired into His servant what He has inspired (53:10).
Note: The above 7 verses refer to God who has placed the Quran all at once into prophet‘s soul coming down from the Horizon of the High, while 7 is a significant number as per God is concern.
- The mind has not erred what it has seen (53:11). Would you then be differed from him on what he sees (53:12)? And certainly, he has seen him in another descent (of God) (53:13). Near a Lote Tree of the ultimate point (53:14). Near of it is a Garden of the Refuge (53:15). When it covers the Lote Tree what it should cover (53:16). The vision has not deviated, nor has it gone wrong (53:17). Certainly, he has seen of the great signs of his Lord (53:18).
Note: The above 8 verses talk about His servant (Muhammad) who has been inspired including the description of the place and the environment where it took place is the ultimate point (al-muntahaa) near a Garden of the Refuge (jannatu al-mawaa) wherein once we all used to live including Adam and Eve before our descending from it to the earth, when the Lote Tree has been in full blossom near it. It is also noteworthy that God had come down to the earth first time to speak to Moses (4:164, 7:142), while it has been His second descent from the Horizon of the High to inspire the Quran all at once into Muhammad’s soul.
- Have you then thought of Allat, and Aluzzah (53:19), and Manat, the third one? (53:20). Do you have the male and He has the female? (53:21). That is what a disgraceful distribution! (53:22). These are not but names you have named them – you and your forefathers. God has not sent down any authority to them. They do not follow except the conjecture and what desires the egos; and certainly, there has come to them the guidance from their Lord (53:23). Or is there for the human being what he has wished (53:24)?
Note: The polytheist Arabs gave the names to the idols and considered them daughters of God expecting from them that they will recommend to God for their good while He has confirmed that He has not sent down any power to them. It is their conjecture and what they do are desire of their souls but God has sent down guidance and the human being should not think that he will get what he wishes for.
- While to God belongs the Hereafter and the Here (53:25). And how many of an angel are in the heavens, their intercession of anything will not avail except after that God gives permission for whomever He wills and approves (53:26). Indeed, those who do not believe in the Hereafter; surely, they name the angels with the feminine naming (53:27).
Note: Both this world and the Hereafter belong to God and He has not given any power of intercession to anyone, even the angels while those who do not believe in the Hereafter have given them the female names.
- And for them there is no knowledge of it. They do not follow except the conjecture. And indeed, the conjecture does not help anything against the truth (53:28). So you (prophet) shall turn away from whoever has turned away from our reminder and he does not desire except the life of the world (53:29). That is their extent of the knowledge. Indeed, your Lord is He who knows best of whoever has strayed from His path, and He knows best of whoever has been guided (53:30). And to God belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth that He will compensate those who have done evil with what they have done, and will compensate those who have good with the best (53:31). Those who avoid gross sins and evil thoughts, except for minor faults; indeed, your Lord’s forgiveness is immense. He is Knower of you when He created you from the earth and when you were embryos in your mothers’ wombs. So, you do not assign uprightness to yourselves; He is Knower of whoever has feared (53:32).
Note: Those who have no knowledge of the message, i.e., the Quran follow the conjecture and are proud of their uprightness, which is against the truth. The prophet has been commanded to turn away from those who turn away from the message given to him. God knows who fears Him and will compensate for both evil and good based on the message sent down while He will forgive the minor sins but not the gross sins.
- Have you seen the one who turned away (53:33)? He has given little to charity, and has withheld (much) (53:34). Has with him a knowledge of the future that he could see (53:35)? Or is he not informed of what in parchments of Moses (53:36)? And is Abraham who has fulfilled (53:37)? That not a bearer will bear burden of another (53:38). And that it has not been for the human being except what he has strived for (53:39). And his striving will soon be seen (53:40). Then he will be compensated the full recompense for it (53:41). And that to your Lord is the final destiny (53:42). And that He who has made you laugh and has made you cry (53:43). And that indeed He, He has caused death and has given life (53:44).
Note: Those who turn away from the message are not charitable, which has been informed even through Moses and Abraham. No soul will bear burden of another soul. Those who strive in the cause of God, He will compensate them at the time of death and at the final judgment as He controls death and life.
- And that He has created the pairs – male and female (53:45). From a tiny drop of semen when it has been ejected (53:46). And that upon Him is the reproduction of another one (53:47). And that He who has made you rich and poor (53:48). And that He who is Lord of the Sirius (53:49).
Note: God multiplies humans through male and female reproduction system while He makes them rich and poor, and He is Lord of the brightest star.
- And that He has destroyed Aad in the past (53:50). And Thamud that He has not spared (53:51). And the people of Noah before that; indeed, they who have been more wicked and rebellious (53:52). And the evil communities He has overturned (53:53). So He has covered them what it has covered (53:54).
Note: God has mentioned the destruction of the wicked people with severe punishment in different generations in the past, which is a warning for the people of the later generations to reflect that they can find the right path to their Lord.
- So, which of your Lord’s favors will you deny (53:55)? This is a warner of the former warners (53:56). The Approaching Day has approached (53:57). There has not been any remover of it other than God (53:58). Do you then wonder of this statement (53:59)? And you are laughing while you are not crying (53:60). And you are making enjoyment (53:61). So you shall prostrate to God and shall worship (Him) (53:62).
Note: God has sent down a warner (Quran) as He has sent down the warners in the past. The end of the world is near so all of us should prostrate to God and worship Him to prevent us from this difficult day.
- Surah al-Najm is a short surah consisting of 62 verses including 15 short simple verses in the surah dealing with the inspiration of the Quran all at once into prophet’s soul.
- It begins with an oath of God referring to an event occasionally visible to the people to assure the prophet’s contemporaries and the people of the later generations that what he is sharing with the people is not from his own desire except an inspiration from God.
- God has clearly explained that He Himself has placed the Quran all at once into the prophet’s soul coming down from the Horizon of the High, which was His another descent to bring the prophet closer to Him.
- He has also explained where the inspiration took place allegorically describing the place and the environment while the prophet saw him in another descent of God and great signs of God while we also know that He came down to the earth once before to directly speak to Moses, one of His servants chosen for Himself.
- The polytheist Arabs used to worship idols as God’s daughters for their betterment giving names to them, even He has not sent down any power to them. It was their conjecture, which is against the truth.
- Both worlds belong to God which means that He has absolute authority and has not given any power of intercession to anyone, even not the angels who serve Him 24 hours.
- Those who have no knowledge of the message sent down follow the conjecture and are proud of their uprightness, while the conjecture is against the truth.
- The prophet has been commanded to turn away from those who has turned away from the message given to him.
- God knows who fears Him and will compensate for both evil and good based on the message sent down while He will forgive the minor sins but not the gross sins.
- Those who turn away from the message are not charitable, which has been informed even through Moses and Abraham.
- No soul will bear burden of any other soul. Thus, those who strive in the cause of God, He will compensate them at the time of their death and at the final judgment as He controls death and life.
- God multiplies humans through the male and female reproduction system while He can make any of them rich or poor, and He is Lord of the great star system.
- God has mentioned the destruction of the wicked people in different generations in the past, which is a warning for the people of later generations to reflect that they can find the right path to their Lord.
Here are highlights of sura: (1) the prophet has not shared anything from his own desire, (2) inspiration of Quran all at once into prophet’s soul by God Himself, (3) the Arabs worshipped idols considering them God’s daughters, (4) God has not assigned any power to the angels for intercession with Him, (5) God will compensate for evil and good as per the given message, (6) He compensates at the time of death and will also compensate in full on a Day of the Judgment, (7) He has created the male and the female reproduction system to multiply humans, (8) destruction of the wicked people in the past is a warning for the people of later generations and (9) a warner that hints the end of the world is closer.
By taking oath God has confirmed that the prophet has not shared anything from his own but volumes and volumes hadith books have been created after his death claiming his sayings and deeds, are now in practice being the main sources of Islam among the vast majority who claim them Muslims instead of the Quran. Despite a warning in the Quran that God has made an enemy for every prophet from the criminal even He has sufficed as Guide and Helper (25:31) and the devils from the human and the jinn who will deceive people with fancy words (6:112) and those who do not believe in the Hereafter will listen to them (6:113). God has not allowed angels who serve Him 24 hours to intercede with Him while several billion people believe that their prophets will intercede on behalf of them to put them to Heaven, is nothing but a satanic trick to put them in Hell can be penetrable using common sense.
In the surah, 15 verses are very special for us to reflect as they talk about inspiration that took place in the outer boundary for the human in any form is the place near a Garden of the Refuge from where we are sent down to the earth. Thus, what God has given us from where we are sent down to get back there correcting ourselves, could not be a matter of recurrent celebration of a night except man-made instead to know it would be the topmost priority being the scripture is one of the two handholds to hold fast to Him.
Peaceful Friday, salaam and God bless.