Overview - Surah 4: an-Nisa' (Women )

Surah Introduction

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It is referred to as ‘an-Nisa’ [The Women] – many of the rulings regarding women and family life are in this Surah. The word 'an-Nisa' occurs with more frequency in this Surah then in any other Surah - being mentioned 18 times [Interestingly, the word Man/Men - occur more times in this Surah than any other Surah -  total of 8 times]. 

According to many scholars, the Surah was revealed after the Battle of Uhud, which left 70 of the Muslims killed. This situation brought about the need to address issues such as inheritance left by those killed etc. Hence in Surah an-Nisa, Allah Almighty address issues such as dealing with orphans [including children of those killed at Uhud] and inheritance.

There are 176 Ayaat in this Surah.

Sections:

  1. Responsibility to take care of the family.  Special care of orphans.
  2. Laws of inheritance.  It is an obligation from Allah.
  3. Relations between men and women should be based on the principle of equity and goodness.
  4. Rules of marriage especially concerning the women who cannot be taken in marriage.
  5. Men and women's rights over their properties.
  6. Disagreement and reconciliation between husband and wife.
  7. Internal and external purity: rules of wudu, ghusl and prayers.
  8. Fulfill the trusts and refer all disputes to Allah and His Messenger.
  9. Those who decline to accept the decisions of Allah's Messenger are the hypocrites.
  10. It is the duty of the Believers to establish justice and protect the poor and oppressed.
  11. Hypocrites' attitude to the Prophet and to the Believers
  12. How to deal with the hypocrites who are prone to fighting
  13. Believers must respect the life of other Believers, Murder and its punishment.
  14. Believers must join and live with other Believers unless they are unable to do so.
  15. Prayers for the travelers and those who are in the battlefield.
  16. Always be just and do not take the side of the unjust.
  17. The secret councils of the hypocrites.
  18. Allah will not forgive Shirk. Shaitan's misleading of humans through deceptions and false promises.
  19. Some more directions about dealing with orphans and family disputes.
  20. Believers must stand for justice for all.  Must pay attention to their faith.
  21. Hypocrites try to deceive Allah.  They are lazy in their prayers. Their end will be the lowest part of hell.
  22. Allah's punishment for those who broke their covenant with Him.  Some People of the Book tried to crucify Jesus, but Allah saved him.
  23. The message of Islam is the same as the message of previous Prophets.
  24. Invitation to the People of the Book to accept Islam and recognize the true teachings of Jesus. Some more elaboration on the law of Inheritance.

Overview

Total Ayat176
Total Words *3747
Root Words *474
Unique Root Words *17
Makki / MadaniMadani
Chronological Order* 92nd (according to Ibn Abbas)
Year of Revelation* 17th year of Prophethood (4th Year Hijri)
Events during/before this Surah*
, Battle of Uhud, Change of Qiblah from Jerusalem to Makkah - Battle of Badr, Migration from Makkah to Madinah - Building of Masjid Nabi in Madinah - Treaty with Jews of Madinah - Marriage of Prophet to Aishah, , 2nd Pledge of Aqabah, 1st Pledge of Aqabah, Death of Abu Talib - Death of Khadijah - Stoning at Ta'if - al-Isra wal Mi'raj - Night Journey, Boycott of Banu Hashim Yr 3, Boycott of Banu Hashim Yr 2, Boycott of Banu Hashim Yr 1, 2nd Migration to Abyssinia, Physical beating and torture of some Muslims - 1st Migration of Muslims to Abyssinia, Public Invitation to Islam - Persecution of Muslims; antagonism - ridicule - derision - accusation - abuse and false propaganda., Revelation begins - Private Invitation to Islam , Revelation begins - Private Invitation to Islam , Revelation begins - Private Invitation to Islam
Events during/after still to occur*
Battle of Ahzab - Expedition of Banu Quraydhah,Treaty of Hudaiybiyah - Letters to Kings and Rulers,,Conquest of Makkah - Battle of Hunain,Hajj led by Abu Bakr - Expedition of Tabuk,Farewell Hajj by Prophet - Death of Prophet - End of Divine Revelation
Names of Prophets Mentioned
Nuh, Ibrahim, Ismail, Ishaq, Yaqub, Ayyub, Musa, Harun, Dawud, Sulayman, Yunus, Isa
Surah Index
Aaron, Ablution, Ablution (circumstances requiring) , Abraham, God (replaces humans with another) , God (giving it all up for him) , God (good and evil are from Him) , God (hard strivers rewarded better) , God (not a trinity) , God (remembering him standing--- sitting--- lying down) , God (wills no wrong to His creation) , Alliances (forbidden with hypocrites) , Angels, Apostasy, Behaviour (conceit discouraged) , Behaviour (don’t mention evil things openly) , Behaviour (towards slaves) , Charity, Charity (niggardliness) , Charity (spending to earn praise forbidden) , Christians (asked not to deify Jesus) , Commandments (kindness towards others) , Commandments (leave company of those in the act of mocking God’s law) , Danger (be prepared for) , David, David (given the Psalms) , Death, Death (while fleeing evil towards God) , Disbelievers, Disbelievers (God’s promise to) , Disbelievers (leave company of those in the act of mocking God’s law) , Disbelievers (relationship to belivers) , Divorce, Divorce (Man) (divorce one woman for another - don’t take back what you gave first), Divorce (Man) (don’t hold wives against their will), Divorce (reconciliation attempt) , Divorce (Woman) (fear ill treatment by husband), Fasting, Fighting (aggression) (forbidden), Fighting (be brave) , Fighting (exemptions) (for helpless), Fighting (exemptions) (for ill), Fighting, Fighting (in God’s cause) , Fighting (not for material gain) , Fighting (when ordained) , Friends (leave company of those in the act of mocking God’s law) , Golden Calf, Greetings, Guardianship (proper conduct of) , Guardianship (punishment for bad ones) , Guardianship (when to end it) , Guardianship (witnesses required to end it) , Hell, Humankind (creation of) , Humankind (selfishness ever present in soul) , Hypocrites, Iblis, Immorality (punish both) , Immorality (punish both) (repentance cancels punishment), Immorality (punish both) (deathbed repentance excluded), Immorality (women) , Immorality (women) (four witnesses required in order to convict), Inheritance, Inheritance (apportionment to) (children and parents), Inheritance (apportionment to) (other kin--- orphans--- and the needy), Inheritance (apportionment to) (siblings), Inheritance (apportionment to) (widows and widowers), Inheritance (don’t hold unloved wives for) , Inheritance (for men) , Inheritance (for women) , Inheritance (summary) , Intoxicants (don’t pray while drunk) , Isaac, Ishmael, Jacob, Jesus, Jesus (bears witness on Resurrection Day) , Jesus (Christians asked not to deify) , Jesus (Jews boast of killing) , Jesus (only a messenger) , Jesus (only seemed slain and crucified) , Jesus (resurrected) , Jesus (truth about him will be realised when people die) , Jews (believe in but few things) , Jews (denied good things of life) , Jews (denied good things of life) (reasons for), Jews, Jews (slaying prophets) , Jews (some distort meanings of all revelations) , Jews (warning to) , Jihad, Jihad (striving hard in God’s cause) , Job, Jonah, Judgement, Judgement (Day) , Killing, Killing (another believer inconceivable unless by mistake) , Killing (another believer inconceivable unless by mistake) (reparations for), Killing (deliberate killing of believer and punishment) , Killing (don’t harm those offering peace) , Killing (not for material gain) , Killing (only during hostilities in progress) , Knowledge, Marriage (appoint arbiter from among you when fearing a breach) , Marriage (don’t hold wives against their will) , Marriage (dowry) , Marriage (dowry) (other mutually agreed arrangements), Marriage (dowry) (woman may return it), Marriage (forbidden) (to certain kin), Marriage (fornication forbidden) , Marriage (if woman fears mistreatment from her husband) , Marriage (polygamy) , Marriage (polygamy) (restrictions about), Marriage (polygamy) (warning against), Marriage (to orphans) , Marriage (to single woman only) , Marriage (to slave) (woman if need arises), Marriage (to slave) (better if men don’t marry), Marriage (to slave) (even if she’s married before being captured), Marriage (to slave) (punishment only half of free women’s if immoral), Mary, Materialism (envy forbidden) , Materialism (forbidden) , Materialism (punishment for) , Materialism (ruining others forbidden) , Mockery (leave company of those in the act of mocking God’s law) , Muhammad (as judge for followers) , Old Testament (followers of) , Orphans, Orphans (leave their possessions) , Prayer (not while drunk) , Prayer (sacred duty linked to time of day) , Prayer (while in danger) , Psalms, Psalms (given to David) , Qur’an, Ramadhan, Record of personal deeds, Religion, Religion (try and penetrate deepest meaning of) , Resurrection (Day) , Resurrection (of soul) , Revelation, Sabbath (breakers) , Sexual Relations, Sexes (created from one living entity (soul)) , Sexes (each entitled to own earnings) , Sexes (equality of) , Sexes (men provide for women) , Sin, Sin (avoiding) , Sin (blaming another) , Slaves, Slaves (freeing) (as penance for death of believer fighting against you), Solomon, Trinity (God is not a) , Usury (Jews took it even though forbidden to) , Weather (rain) (and fighting), Women (gross moral depravity) , Women (gross moral depravity) (punishment for), Women (gross moral depravity) (repentance), Women (ill willed) , Women (ill willed) (punishment for), Women (righteous guard intimacies revealed to them)

Central Theme

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Consolidation of the Muslim Ummah. The main object of this Surah is to teach the Muslims the ways that unite a people and make them firm and strong. Introductions for the stability of family, which is the nucleus of community have been given. Then they have been urged to prepare themselves for defence. Side by side with these, they have been taught the importance of the propagation of Islam. Above all, the importance of the highest moral character in the scheme of consolidation of the Community has been impressed.

The main theme of this Surah is the building of a strong Islamic community. Guidelines are provided to the Muslims for uniting their ranks to be firm and strong. Instructions are given to stabilize the family structure, which is the nucleus of a strong community. Muslims are urged to prepare themselves for defense and to be the torchbearers of Islam. The importance of having a high moral character in building a strong community is emphasized.

Guidelines for the smooth running of family life are provided and methods to settle family disputes are taught. Rules for marriage are prescribed and rights of wife and husband are assigned fairly and equitably. The status of women in the society is determined and the declaration about the rights of orphans is made. Laws and regulations are laid down for the distribution of inheritance. Instructions are given to reform the economic system. The foundation of criminal laws is laid down. Drinking is prohibited. Instructions are given for cleanliness and purification. The Muslims are taught what kind of relations they should have with their Rabb and with their fellow human beings. Instructions are given for the maintenance of discipline in the Muslim community.

The moral and religious condition of the People of the Book is reviewed to teach lessons to the Muslims, and a warning is given to refrain from following in their footsteps. The distinctive features of hypocrisy and true faith are clearly marked for easy identification between the two. The setback in the Battle of Uhud had enabled the mushrik Arab clans, the neighboring Jews, and the hypocrites in Al-Madinah to threaten the Muslims from all sides. At this critical stage, Allah's grace filled the Muslims with courage and gave them the necessary instructions during that period. In order to counteract the fearful rumors that were being spread by the hypocrites, they were asked to make a thorough inquiry about their accuracy and then inform the appropriate leadership. Muslims were experiencing difficulties in offering their Salah during the expeditions when water was not available to perform ablution. In such circumstances Allah granted a permission to make Tayammum (purification with clean earth), and to shorten the Salah or to offer the "Salat-ul-Khauf," when they were faced with danger. Instructions were also given to those Muslims who were living in the enemy camps that they should migrate to Al-Madinah, the Islamic State.

Clear instructions are also given regarding the hypocrites and nonbelligerent clans. On one hand, the superiority of Islamic morality and culture is established over that of the Jews, Christians and mushrikin; on the other hand, their incorrect religious concepts, immorality, and evil actions are criticized to prepare the ground for inviting them to the Right Way. 

Establishment of the new Islamic social order after removing the pre-Islamic Jahili system.

'an-Nisa' (Women) occurs more times in this Surah than in any other Surah - 18 times.

'Yateem' (Orphan) is mentioned 8 times - higher than any other Surah.

'Da'afah' (weak) is mentioned 8 times - higher than any other Surah.

'Ghafarah' (Forgiveness) is mentioned 21 times - higher than any other Surah.

'Hakama' (Ruling/wisdom) is mentioned 22 times - higher than any other Surah.

The Just System will protect the rights of the weak and vulnerable members of society albeit, women, orphans, marriage, forced marriage, inheritance and financial rights. We can also take note that Ghafara (forgiveness) appears most in this Surah. As people are weak, we should be fair to the weak and forgiving towards them.

 

Connection of the name of the Surah and its Ayaat

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Connection between the beginning and the ending of the Surah

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Manuscripts / Inscriptions

Connection of the Surah to the Surah before/after it

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The Virtues of the Surah

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Special Features of the Surah

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  • Surah an-Nisa is named after 'Women', There is not a Surah named after Men.

Important key and unique words of the Surah

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  • Words stemming from R-Q-B (watch/observe) appear more times in this Surah then any other Surah of the Qur'an. It appears 4 times. 
  • 'an-Nisa' (Women) occurs more times in this Surah than in any other Surah - 18 times.

  • 'Yateem' (Orphan) is mentioned 8 times - higher than any other Surah.

  • 'Da'afah' (weak) is mentioned 8 times - higher than any other Surah.

  • 'Ghafarah' (Forgiveness) is mentioned 21 times - higher than any other Surah.

  • 'Hakama' (Ruling/wisdom) is mentioned 22 times - higher than any other Surah.

  • The word  مُرَٰغَمًا "locations" in (4:100) is unique to this Surah.  
  • There are 14 Unique Words - ONLY used in Surah an-Nisa

     ذ ي غ - "They spread" (4:83)

    ف ض و - "Intimate with one another" (4:21)

    ن ب ط - "draw conclusion (from) it"  (4:83)       

    ج ب ت - "false god/ sorcery/superstition" (4:51)

    ر غ م - "locations" (4:100)

    ن ض ج - "roasted" (4:56)

    ح و ب - "sin" (4:2)

    ب ت ك - "cut off" (4:119)

    ث ب ي - "companies" (4:71)

    ع و ل - "injustice/deviate from the right course" (4:3)

    ذ ب ذ ب - "wavering between them" (4:143)

    ب ط أ - "lags behind" (4:72)

    ب د ر - "suddenly/haste" (4:6)

    ن ك ف - "disdain" (4:172)

  • (4:12) is the longest Ayat of this Surah with 88 words,

    وَلَكُمْ نِصْفُ مَا تَرَكَ أَزْوَاجُكُمْ إِن لَّمْ يَكُن لَّهُنَّ وَلَدٌ ۚ فَإِن كَانَ لَهُنَّ وَلَدٌ فَلَكُمُ الرُّبُعُ مِمَّا تَرَكْنَ ۚ مِن بَعْدِ وَصِيَّةٍ يُوصِينَ بِهَا أَوْ دَيْنٍ ۚ وَلَهُنَّ الرُّبُعُ مِمَّا تَرَكْتُمْ إِن لَّمْ يَكُن لَّكُمْ وَلَدٌ ۚ فَإِن كَانَ لَكُمْ وَلَدٌ فَلَهُنَّ الثُّمُنُ مِمَّا تَرَكْتُم ۚ مِّن بَعْدِ وَصِيَّةٍ تُوصُونَ بِهَا أَوْ دَيْنٍ ۗ وَإِن كَانَ رَجُلٌ يُورَثُ كَلَالَةً أَوِ امْرَأَةٌ وَلَهُ أَخٌ أَوْ أُخْتٌ فَلِكُلِّ وَاحِدٍ مِّنْهُمَا السُّدُسُ ۚ فَإِن كَانُوا أَكْثَرَ مِن ذَٰلِكَ فَهُمْ شُرَكَاءُ فِي الثُّلُثِ ۚ مِن بَعْدِ وَصِيَّةٍ يُوصَىٰ بِهَا أَوْ دَيْنٍ غَيْرَ مُضَارٍّ ۚ وَصِيَّةً مِّنَ اللَّـهِ ۗ وَاللَّـهُ عَلِيمٌ حَلِيمٌ "And for you is half of what your wives leave if they have no child. But if they have a child, for you is one fourth of what they leave, after any bequest they [may have] made or debt. And for the wives is one fourth if you leave no child. But if you leave a child, then for them is an eighth of what you leave, after any bequest you [may have] made or debt. And if a man or woman leaves neither ascendants nor descendants but has a brother or a sister, then for each one of them is a sixth. But if they are more than two, they share a third, after any bequest which was made or debt, as long as there is no detriment [caused]. [This is] an ordinance from Allah, and Allah is Knowing and Forbearing. " (4:12)

  • (4:68) is the shortest Ayat of this Surah with only 3 words,

    وَلَهَدَيْنَاهُمْ صِرَاطًا مُّسْتَقِيمًا " And We would have guided them to a straight path." (4:68)

 
Total Word Count per Ayat (shows how many words per Ayat) *

Unique Root Words to this Surah only


17 unique root words that do not appear in any other Surah *

Top 10 Most Frequent Root Words used in this Surah

Root Word Frequency
in Surah
Frequency
in Qur'an
أ ل ه 231 2851
ك و ن 114 1390
ٱلَّذِى 74 1464
أ م ن 64 879
ق و ل 46 1722
إِلَىٰ 41 742
ك ف ر 38 525
ب ي ن 37 523
أ ت ي 35 549
ر س ل 31 513

Period of Revelation

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This Surah comprises several discourses which were revealed on different occasions during the period ranging probably between the end of year 3 A.H. and the end of 4 A.H. or the beginning of 5 A.H. Although it is difficult to determine the exact dates of their revelations it is possible to assign to them a fairly correct period with the help of the Commandments and the events mentioned therein. A few instances are given below by way of illustration:

1. We know that the inheritance law for those martyred and protection for the rights of the orphans was sent down after the Battle of Uhud (in which 70 Muslims were martyred). From this we conclude that v. 1 -28 were revealed on that occasion.

2. We learn from the traditions that the ruling regarding the prayer (Salah) during war time was given on the occasion of the Zat-ur-Riqa’aan expedition. This took place in 4 A.H. From this we conclude that the discourse containing v. 102 was revealed on that occasion.

3. The last warning to the Jews was given before the Banu-Nadheer were exiled from Madinah in Rabi’-ulAwwal 4 A.H. It may therefore be assumed that the discourse containing v. 47 was revealed before that date.

4. The permission about performing ablution with dust in the event of no water (tayammum) verse 43, was given during the Bani-al-Mustaliq expedition which took place in 5 A.H. [REF: Mawdudi]

Background Reasons for Revelation

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Let us now consider the social and historical considerations of the period in order to understand the Surah. All the discourses in this Surah deal with three main problems which confronted the Prophet at the time. First of all he was engaged in bringing about an all round development of the islamic Community that had been formed at the time of his migration to Madinah. For this purpose he was introducing new moral cultural social economic and political ways in place of the old ones of the pre-islamic period. The second thing that occupied his attention and efforts was the bitter struggle that was going on with the polytheist Arabs, the Jewish clans and the hypocrites who were opposing tooth and nail his mission of reform. Above all, he had to propagate Islam in the face of the bitter opposition of these powers of evil with a view to capturing more and more minds and hearts.

Accordingly detailed instructions have been given for the consolidation and strengthening of the islamic Community in continuation of those given in Surah 2: Al-Baqarah (The Cow). Principles for the smooth running of family life have been laid down and ways of settling family disputes have been taught. Rules have been prescribed for marriage and rights of wife and husband have been apportioned fairly and equitably. The status of women in the society has been determined and the declaration of the rights of orphans has been made. Laws and regulations have been laid down for the division of inheritance and instructions have been given to reform economic affairs. The foundation of the penal code has been laid down, drinking has been prohibited and instructions have been given for cleanliness and purity. The Muslims have been taught the kind of relations good men should have with their God and fellow men. Instructions have been given for the maintenance of discipline in the Muslim Community.

The moral and religious condition of The People of the Book (Jews and Christians) has been reviewed to teach lessons to the Muslims and to forewarn them to refrain from following in their footsteps. The conduct of the hypocrites has been criticized and the distinctive features of hypocrisy and true faith have been clearly marked off to enable the Muslims to distinguish between the two. In order to cope with the aftermath of the Battle of Uhud, Inspiring discourses were sent down to urge the Muslims to face the enemy bravely, for defeat in the Battle had so emboldened the polytheist Arab clans and the neighbouring Jews and the hypocrites at home, that they were threatening the Muslims on all sides. At this critical juncture God filled the Muslims with courage and gave them such instructions as were needed during that period of war clouds. In order to counteract the fearful rumours that were being spread by the hypocrites and the Muslims of weak faith they were asked to make a thorough enquiry into them and to inform the responsible people about them. Then they were experiencing some difficulties in offering their prayer during the expeditions to some places where no water was available for performing their ablutions etc. In such cases they were allowed to cleanse themselves with pure earth and to shorten the prayer or to offer the “Prayer of Fear” when they were faced with danger. Instructions were also given for the solution of the puzzling problem of those Muslims who were scattered among the unbelieving Arab clans and were often involved in war. They were asked to migrate to Madinah the abode of Islam.

This Surah also deals with the case of Banu nadir who were showing a hostile and menacing attitude in spite of the peace treaties they had made with the Muslims. They were openly siding with the enemies of Islam and hatching plots against the Prophet and the Muslim Community even at Madinah itself. They were taken to task for their inimical behaviour and given a final warning to change their attitude and were at last exiled from Madinah on account of their misconduct.

The problem of the hypocrites, who had become very troublesome at that time, was involving the Believers in difficulties. Therefore, they were divided into different categories to enable the Muslims to deal with them appropriately. Clear instructions were also given regarding the attitude they should adopt towards the non-belligerent clans. The most important thing needed at that time was to prepare the Muslims for the bitter struggle with the opponents of Islam. For this purpose greatest importance was attached to their character building, for it was obvious that the small Muslim Community could only come out successful, nay, survive, if the Muslims possessed high moral character. They were, therefore, enjoined to adopt the highest moral qualities and were severely criticized whenever any moral weakness was detected in them.

Though this Surah mainly deals with the moral and social reforms, yet due attention has been paid to propagation of Islam. On the one hand, the superiority of the islamic morality and culture has been established over that of the Jews, Christians and polytheists; on the other hand, their wrong religious conceptions, their wrong morality and their evil acts have been criticized to prepare the ground for inviting them to the way of the Truth. 

Relevant Hadith

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Lessons/Guidance/Major-Issues/Reflections

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  • Restriction on number of wives.
  • Marriage and the rights of women.
  • Laws of inheritance, women are awarded the rights to inherit.
  • Acceptable and unacceptable repentance.
  • Mahram relations - relatives that are prohibited for marriage.
  • Commandment about 'arbitration' in family disputes.
  • Second commandment relating to the prohibition of drinking, ( first commandment was in Surah Al-Baqarah 2:219).
  • The one who disputes the decision of the Prophet is not a believer.
  • Divine Law that obedience of the Rasool is in fact the obedience of Allah.
  • Allah commands to respond greetings with better greetings.
  • Laws about manslaughter, murder and bloodwit.
  • Salat-ul-Qasr: permission of short prayer in travelling.
  • Salat-ul-Khauf: performing prayer in a state of emergency (war).
  • Salat: ( prayers) are obligatory on prescribed timings.
  • Prohibition of 'secret counsels' and its exceptions.
  • Decree of Allah that He will never forgive a mushrik.
  • Allah's commandment to be firm for justice and bear true witness.
  • Allah's commandment to boycott un-Islamic meetings.
  • The fact that hypocrites will be in the lowest depth of hellfire.
  • Jesus was neither killed nor crucified.
  • Jesus was a Prophet of Allah (Almighty God) and His worshipper.
  • Stop saying "Trinity" - Allah is the One and Only God.
  • The Qur'an carries the same Message that was sent to Nuh (Noah), Ibrahim (Abraham), Musa (Moses) and Isa (Jesus).
  • Allah's commandments relating to family life and community life.

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Miscellaneous Issues

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Scientific References

The Skin – Sensation of Pain

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا بِآيَاتِنَا سَوْفَ نُصْلِيهِمْ نَارًا كُلَّمَا نَضِجَتْ جُلُودُهُم بَدَّلْنَاهُمْ جُلُودًا غَيْرَهَا لِيَذُوقُوا الْعَذَابَ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّـهَ كَانَ عَزِيزًا حَكِيمًا "Indeed, those who disbelieve in Our verses - We will drive them into a Fire. Every time their skins are roasted through We will replace them with other skins so they may taste the punishment. Indeed, Allah is ever Exalted in Might and Wise." (4:56)

Shaykh Zindani said, “People used to believe that all the parts of the human body feel pain re-gardless of where a person is struck, until the advancement of anatomy revealed the truth that not all parts of the body feel pain and that it is only the skin that is the source of pain. For example, if you bring a needle and insert it into the body of a person, the pain stops as soon as it passes through the skin into the flesh. Scientists discovered with the help of a microscope that nerves are centered in the skin and that sensory nerves are of different kinds. Some of them feel touch, some feel pressure, some feel heat and some feel coldness. They realised that the nerves that give the sensation of heat and coldness are only found in the skin.”

God tells us that He would exchange the disbeliever’s roasted skins for other skins in order to exacerbate the pain they shall suffer in the fire of Hell. He said, “every time their skins are roasted through”, i.e., totally burned with all nerves of sensation and pain. He associated between the sensation of pain and the skin when roasted and burned totally, thus losing its structure and function.  When sensation of pain is lost, a new fully composed and functional skin is replaced, where the nerve ending responsible for the painful sensation of heat and burn perform and function to make the disbeliever taste the punishment of being burned with fire over and over again.

Taking skin burns as a distinct cause for the skin sensation of pain, burns can be divided into 3 types:

1. Burns of first degree (sun burns): these affect the epidermis causing swelling and moderate pain.  The phenomena of redness, swelling and pain usually disappear within two to three days.

2. Burns of second degree: epidermis and dermis are injured.  In such a case, a detachment occurs between epidermis and dermis, causing the collection of secretions between these two layers. The injured person suffers from severe pain, and excessive increase of pain sensation, due to irritation of exposed nerve ending particularly after the outburst of blisters.  The skin starts to heal within 14 days as a result of the process of renovation and inversion under the skin.

3. Burns of third degree: the whole skin thickness is burned and perhaps the injury may reach the muscles or the bone.   The skin loses elasticity and becomes rough and dry.  In this case, the injured person does not feel much pain, as nerve endings have been damaged almost completely due to burning.

For 3rd degree burns, the nerves in the skin are completely destroyed and there will be no longer the feeling of any pain.

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