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Messages - brook

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4:102 itself says what to do so that the enemy does not rush upon you in one go...

Salaam Wakas.  I am sorry to say it, but you are terribly mistaken about the rerason why they need their weapons ready even during their صلو in that life and death situation. They need them in order to defend themselves when the enemy attacks. The enemy will attack no matter what.  

Please refer to 4:104. The attack did happen and the believers had such terrible time that "the land, for all that it is wide, did constrain you, and ye turned back in retreat." (9:25)

You can never expect professional commanders to take you seriously if you insist that an army may do without rear and forward teams to look out. They do their best to discover the whereabouts of the enemy but they may still fail. In the case we are discussing they failed.       


4:102 ...and thou uphold/establish the salat/bond for/to them*, then let a group from among them stand/establish** with thee and let them bring their weapons; then when they have SaJaD then let them be behind you (plural)...

*can be translated as for/to/unto them, e.g. see 2:109, 5:75
**again, it can mean "stand" figuratively, e.g. see usage in 4:127

Please excuse me again but from these words I cannot decide what you really think is the صلو that verses 4:101-103 deal with.

Is it
a Quran lesson,
a briefing on the battle tactics as a friend here has suggested,
an attempt to boost the morale of the believers in that life and death situation,
or what?

If I knew your idea, I would be able to tell you whether it is plausible or not.

Hasan Akçay

I can only assume you made up the part about there being other special units spread around (which I assume do not establish the salat), AND that the prophet being called a perfect commander, as there is no evidence for either. I should have been clearer, my article is based on what AQ actually says, not make believe.

Salaam Wakas.

I have not made up the part about there being other special units spread around. For, it is a must in military operations to send a unit ahead and to leave a unit behind to act as a lookout. Muhammed was exemplary -اسوة- enough a commander (33:21) to know and implement the rule.

During one particular battle for example he did assign a unit to act as a lookout even while the bulk of the army were actively fighting. This is history, I know, and history cannot be allowed to do the work of Quranic verses, but it still tells us a lot of facts. Plus, this history is supported by the relevant verses such as 3:152-153.

As for the question whether they established the salaat on duty, that is irrelevant. It can be discussed separately.

Hasan Akçay  

OPEN BURHAN QURAN BROWSER: ( It is not lawful for thee (to marry more) women after this, nor to change them for (other) wives, even though their beauty attract thee, except any thy right hand should possess

La yahillu laka alnnisao min baAAdu wa la an tabaddala bihinna min azwajin wa law aAAjabaka husnuhunna illa ma malakat yameenuk

Form now on you are not allowed (to marry) women - La yahillu laka alnnisao min baAAd'
and to change them for any from your wives - wa la an tabaddala bihinna min azwajin
even if you like their beauty (the beauty of other women) - walaw aAAjabaka husnuhun
except whom your oath has - illa ma malakat yameenuk

MY TRANSLATION: From now on you are not allowed (to marry) other women, neither are you allowed to change them for any from your wives even if you like the beauty of other women, except whom your oath has.  

I am still unsure, especially about my translation of the words an tabaddala bihinne min azwajin. Will you please help and answer my two questions:

(1)Are the ma malakat aymanuhun mentioned in 55, that is, those whom the oaths of the Prophet's wives have, engaged to the Prophet's wives, which seems to be claimed in the article?!

(2)What is the difference between those whom the Prophet's oath has in 52 and those whom the oaths of the prophet's wives have in 55?

Hasan Akçay


Assuming this is the case, as is commonly understood, if they stand behind them then it proves slightly awkward positioning since those behind would have to face both ways in this situation, looking through/past those in front of them. Even if they were at the sides, thus not having to look through/past them, they could not be in front of them, to remain strictly true to the verse. The reason for facing both ways is that during traditional Muslim prayer one tends to look at the ground or not far in front of them, so in terms of these people acting as a lookout in case of attack is not practical. This positioning would be restrictive thus not ideal in a potential life and death situation, but it is plausible.

There is nothing awkward or impractical in the positioning of the group behind them, because they are not acting as a lookout. The army already have their special units around them acting as a lookout; they don't need another group to do the same duty. Please remember that Muhammed is a perfect commander (33:21, 3:121).

The first group then is simply waiting for the salaat to finish. When it is over, the whole army will move on together.

Hasan Akçay

Salaam. The concluding paragraph of the article whose link Wakas gives:

Our understanding is that 'Ma Malakat Aymanukum' are men and women who are "betrothed/engaged' in marriage and thus are described by the term 'what your OATHS posses' (i.e. due to the oath of marriage).

When I consider Al-Ahzab 52, 53 and 55, I have difficulty agreeing with the understanding above.
52.(O Prophet!) Form now on you are allowed neither to marry other women nor to change them in place of your wives, except those whom your oath has - ma malakat yameenuk.
53.(O believing men!) When you ask (the Prophet's women) for anything you want, ask them from before a screen.
55.However, there is no sin concerning those whom their oaths possess - ma malakat aymanuhun.

(1)Are the ma malakat aymanuhun mentioned in 55, that is, those whom the oaths of the Prophet's women have, engaged to the Prophet's women?!

(2)What is the difference between those whom the Prophet's oath has in 52 and those whom the oaths of the prophet's women have in 55?

Hasan Akçay

Salaam MesMorial. Thanks for intending to learn what I advocate in terms of number of obligatory salawat each day. I advocate 2.

I can't see in the Quran a so-called "middle prayer" to be performed in an allocated time-span with a beginning and an end, which is a must for it to be obligatory according to 4:103. The time for the salati al-wusta mentioned in 2:238, for example, is so unclear that you can not even tell whether it is noon time or midnight.

If I remember correctly, adverb wusta in "as-salati al-wusta" has been discussed in detail in this forum and decided that it means moderate, which covers all salawat. That is, the evening salat and the morning salat and the salat on the cogregation day are all to be performed moderately, without resorting to the extreme. Please refer to Al-Israa 110, where God says: "Neither speak thy prayer aloud, nor speak it in a low tone, but seek a middle course in between."

Hasan Akçay

That leaves the problem of the "middle prayer".

A salaat is obligatory only if it is timed (4:103). And since you can not find a time which is defined with a beginning and an end for any salaat other than the morning and evening salaats, the so-called middle prayer is not valid. The people who claim it to be valid have to either define it by referring to its beginning and end or give up their claim. It actually is a matter of believing in the words of God, who says that the salaat is timed.  

I am not sure that 2:187 mentions a specific time for Fajr since it is referring to fasting...

There is no need to be unsure. The appearance of the white thread at the break of the light corresponds to its disappearace at the fall of the dark. Just as its disappearance defines a salaat time at ghasaqi allayl, so does its appearance define another salaat time at fajr.

Actually those are the times when the approaches of the night (zulafan mina allayl) rise up to their start in the evening and fall down to their end in the morning (11:114). In other words, the approaches of the night are from sunset to nightfall in the evening, and from fajr to sunrise in the morning.  

Hasan Akçay

Salaam MesMorial.

The two ends of the day mentioned in 11:114 definitely belong to the night because they are when the time for the salati alAAisha begins and when the time for the salati alfajr ends. Remember, the salaat is timed (4:103), and this will come true only if we know when it begins and when it ends.

Take the first end of the day, that is the sunrise, which actually is a line. The side of the line facing the day is part of the day, and the side of the line facing the night is part of the night. If the sunrise were when the salati alfajr begins, we could not know when it ends; as a result it would mean nothing in terms of the definition of time; that is, the time for salati alfajr in our case.

The time for the salati alfajr begins when the white thread of dawn appears to you distinct from its black thread (2:187) and ends just when the disc of the sun touches the horizon. The salati alAAisha begins when the  setting sun disappears from the day and ends at ghasaqi allayl; that is, nightfall (17:78).

Both the salati alfajr and the salati alAAisha are night salaats. There is no daily day salaat in the Quran.

Hasan Akçay

Peace Hasan,

Either the whole expression is taken physically or not. If "chin" is not taken physically then "sujaddan" cannot be taken physically. An example that is to be taken physically is in 7:143, where we hear "khar Mousa s'aqan", Moses fell in shock. One cannot take "fell" as idiomatic while "shock" as physical.

I have nothing against physical prostration but then if you really believe that it is physical you have to do it to the chin and not the forehead. It is quite telling that the god uses this particular idiom (which fabricators of poetry later borrowed) since one cannot prostrate physically to the chin and the forehead at the same time. It is either or. So what the god is essentially telling us is that whether we interpret "sujud" physically or non physically, what sectarians are doing is not correct.

There is nothing in the word "qam" that says it is physical for sure. Just read the same word further down in 4:127:

"That you stand for the orphans in equality."

Is this same exact verb as in 4:102 physical?



I have nothing against physical prostration but then if you really believe that it is physical you have to do it to the chin and not the forehead.

Salaam ayman.

The expression in يَخِرُّونَ لِلأَذْقَانِ سُجَّدًا  is idiomatic; that is, it has got nothing to do with the chin. Example: "...mighty trees were humbled by a strong downpour of rain, and they fell to the chin." Trees do not have a chin. The chin in this context is nonexistent. You do not have to carry out your physical prostration to something which is nonexistent when prostration is concerned.

The example is from a fictitious character, alright, but it is from the language of the Arabs, which is factual. And the fact that لِلأَذْقَانِ is idiomatic is the result of a comparative study of 17:107 and 17:109, which are also factual.

Plus, it is not cited in order to deal with the question whether SAJDAH is physical or not; it is not cited in favor of or against any claim. It is cited during a study.

As for FALTAQUM in 4:102, this verb may mean stand up like in 27:39 as well as deal with like in 4:127.

before you stand up from your place (TAQOOMA - تَقُومَ)
That you deal justly with the orphans (TAQOOMOO - تَقُومُواْ)

Its derivative QIYAMAN may mean standing like in 4:103 as well as support like in 4:5.

Praise Allah standing, sitting down, or lying down on your sides (QIYAMAN - قِيَامًا)
your property, which Allah has made a means of support for you (QIYAMAN - قِيَاماً)

Which meaning is correct depends on the context. That is why I requested Wakas to consider the fact that الصَّلاَةَ in 4:102 is performed on the war front, open to enemy attack any time now. The believers over there are too tense to attend a class meeting.  

What do you think they do on that active war front as a response to the messenger’s call for QIYAAM and SAJDAH?

I have once taken part in a kind of military combat; so I know. If somebody was crazy enough to give us a Quran lesson over there, I would simply disobey him supposing he was kidding. But I needed to pray.  

Please excuse me but I don’t understand you at the moment because I don’t know what you think الصَّلاَةَ actually is in 4:102 if it is not a prayer consisting of 1 qiyaam + 1 sajdah.

Is it a Quran lesson, a briefing on the battle tactics as a friend here on this forum has suggested, an activity to boost the morale of the believers, or what?

If it is a Quran lesson, can 2:222 be taught over there? If not, are there any objective criteria to decide what can be taught and what can’t be taught? If you are entitled to count out certain teaching points, why aren’t you entitled to give up the whole crazy idea?

Hasan Akçay

I find it interesting that people can cite 4:102 in support of sujud=prostration, and those who disagree with that, also cite 4:102 showing it cannot mean that.

Who is right?

Well, one thing is clear, this verse has been discussed in detail before, and it would seem both sides ignore certain aspects of the verse, and unfortunately, this approach usually does not lead anywhere.

I am currently writing an article on SJD, in which I discuss all occurrences, including 4:102, in detail. Hopefully it will be of help.

One thing is definite: الصلاة mentioned in 4:101-104 is performed on the active war front while the believers are aware that the enemy may attack any time now. That is why God warns them to be on the alert and keep their weapons within their reach even during الصلاة:

"Let one party of them stand up (in prayer) with thee, Taking their arms with them - فَلْتَقُمْ طَآئِفَةٌ مِّنْهُم مَّعَكَ وَلْيَأْخُذُواْ أَسْلِحَتَهُمْ."

"...the Unbelievers wish, if ye were negligent of your arms and your baggage, to assault you in a single rush - وَدَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ لَوْ تَغْفُلُونَ عَنْ أَسْلِحَتِكُمْ وَأَمْتِعَتِكُمْ فَيَمِيلُونَ عَلَيْكُم مَّيْلَةً وَاحِدَةً"

It is like being on a raft afloat the waves during a flood. The raft is in no way a place where you can take education of any sort. If you treat الصلاة over there as if it were a class meeting, your concentration is crucially weakened and you lose both your dear life and the battle which you are out there to fight.

Your polytheistic enemy and you are like two gladiators out there doomed to kill each. Actually it is most probably the day of hunain described in At-Tawba 25, when "the land, for all that it is wide, did constrain you, and ye turned back in retreat - وَضَاقَتْ عَلَيْكُمُ الأَرْضُ بِمَا رَحُبَتْ ثُمَّ وَلَّيْتُم مُّدْبِرِينَ".

Wakas, please take this fact into account when you are writing your article and concentrate on the words فلتقم and سجدوا only in 4:102 so that you will not digress. I also have studied the related verses as well as I can. I will try to respond, God willing, and try to be of help.

Hasan Akçay  

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