Welcome to our weekly program "Path towards Enlightenment" in which we present you a fluent and easy-to-understand explanation of the ayahs of the holy Qur’an. We start from where we left you last Friday and here is ayah 15 of Surah Sajdah:
“Only those believe in Our signs who, when they are reminded of them, fall down in prostration and celebrate the praise of their Lord, and they are not arrogant.”
There are many people who claim to have faith but their behaviour betrays their lack of belief. They claim to be believers but their deeds are not in harmony with the holy Qur’an. They claim to be faithful but they neither prostrate to God nor are humble to people. They disobey God and are arrogant towards the people.
The wording of this ayah is obvious that persons who believe from the depth of their heart are neither heedless of divine signs nor are they arrogant. On seeing the glory of the Almighty Creator they fall in prostration to God, in contrast to the wrongdoers and the hypocrites. In its own unique style of teaching, when illustrating the feature of the wrong doers, the Qur’an mentions the signs of the true believers, too. Therefore, after explaining some things about the wrong doers and disbelievers in the former verses, here the Holy Qur’an refers to some outstanding qualities of the true believers. Among the qualities of the true believers, y is modesty and avoiding any kind of arrogance, since pride is the first step of the ladder of blasphemy and faithlessness, while modesty, in regard to the truth, is the first step of faith. Those who pave the path of pride and egotism neither prostrate before Allah nor do they glorify and praise Him, nor do they formally respect the rights of His servants. The true believers are always thankful to God and never complain of the ups and downs of life.
An important to note about this ayah, is that, it is one of the four ayahs of the holy Qur’an that at the time of recitation of them, it is obligatory for us to fall ourselves in prostration. The other Surahs in which the ayahs of obligatory prostration are mentioned, are Surah Fusselat, Surah Najm, and Surah Alaq. According to the School of the Prophet’s Ahl al-Bayt the recitation of these four Suras in prayer, after Surah al-Hamd, is not permissible, and those who are in the state of major ritual impurity and monstrous women must not recite even one verse of these four Surahs.
From this ayah we learn that:
- Prostration to God Almighty and glorifying Him are among the signs of the true believers.
- The best remembrance of God is to glorify and thank Him in prostration.
- An act of prostration, which is not followed by pride and arrogance, is invaluable.
Now we listen to and read ayahs 16 and 17 of Surah Sajdah:
“Their sides vacate their beds to supplicate their Lord in fear and hope, and they spend out of what We have provided them.”
“No one knows what has been kept hidden for them of comfort as a reward for what they used to do.”
Getting up in midnight and separating from one’s bed is one of other signs of the true believers. When the eyes of the negligent people are asleep, the true believers awaken and spend a part of night in praying and supplicating. They worship Allah with their whole entity. They are alive with His remembrance, and they keep the container of their hearts full of His love. They hold not only the obligatory daily prayers but after midnight perform the recommended Tahajjud Prayer. Night is the best time for supplicating to God, for; at that time, the presence of heart and mind reaches the highest point of concentration. Late midnight is a good opportunity for seeking forgiveness from God for beseeching divine mercy. God Almighty shows special mercy to the midnight worshippers and accepts their requests.
As is evident by the next ayah, the act of being vigilant at midnight, the midnight prayer, and helping the needy and deprived people bring the best rewards. Imam Ja’far Sadeq (AS), the 6th Infallible Heir of Prophet Mohammad (blessings of God upon him and his progeny), has said: “The reward of every good deed has been mentioned in the Qur’an except the reward of the midnight prayer and none knows its reward but Allah.”
Then he recited this ayah.
From these ayahs we learn that:
- The true believer neither considers himself immune from divine wrath nor is disappointed of receiving divine mercy.
- Early rising at late midnight before the break of dawn for recitation of the holy Qur’an, performing the special prayer, and supplicating to God Almighty, are among the signs of the real faithful.
- Toiling in the Way of God, brings great rewards, and only God Almighty know what He has reserved for His sincere servants, who sacrifice their sleep and comfort, in order worship, glorify and thank the One and Only creator.
Now we listen to and read ayahs 18 and 19 of Surah Sajdah:
“Is someone who is faithful like someone who is a transgressor? They are not equal.”
“As for those who have faith and do righteous deeds, for them are gardens of the Abode —a hospitality for what they used to do.”
The way of comparison is one of the best educational ways. In this ayah, the comparison which was mentioned in former ayahs is made more clear. This sentence has been stated in a positive interrogation with a negative form, the answer of which emerges from the intellect and nature of any person indicating that these two are never equal. It is also clear that whoever blasphemes or commits a sin has come out of the command of Allah and wisdom, and is thus a transgressor. It should be noted that as long as a fruit is inside its cover it is safe, but when it comes out from its cover it will decay. Therefore, when a person becomes a transgressor, he has indeed become decayed.
The next ayah says the reward for the true believers for their doing of righteous deeds is eternal bliss in paradise in the form of gardens, which is indeed an act of hospitality by the Lord Most High.
From these ayahs we learn that:
- For inviting people to faith, a comparison should be drawn between the life of a true believer and a transgressor, who cannot be equal.
- Tue faith is proved through good deeds and acts, and the two are never separate.
- Paradise is the reward reserved by God Almighty for the faithful.