Overview - Surah 67: al-Mulk (The Dominion )

Naming Convention of the Surah

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Surah al-Mulk takes its name from the first Ayat, تَبَارَكَ الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ الْمُلْكُ وَهُوَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ "Blessed is He in whose hand is dominion, and He is over all things competent -" [67:1].

There are 30 Ayat in this Surah.

Overview

Total Ayat30
Total Words333
Root Words133
Unique Root Words0
Makki / MadaniMakki
Chronological Order* 77th (according to Ibn Abbas)
Year of Revelation*
Events during/before this Surah*
N/A
Events during/after still to occur*
N/A
Names of Prophets Mentioned
No Prophets names are mentioned in this Surah
Surah Index
God (beyond definition) , God (grants life and death) , Astronomy (stars) (neighbourhood of Earth populated by), Birds, Death, Disbelievers (God’s promise to) , Earth, Earthquake, Heaven (several) , Hell, Jinn, Resurrection, Water, Weather (wind) ,

Central Theme

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In this Surah, on the one hand, the teachings of Islam have been introduced briefly and on the other, the people living in heedlessness have been aroused from their slumber in a most effective way. A characteristic of the earliest Surahs of the Makkan period is that they present the entire teachings of Islam and the object of the Prophet’s mission, not in detail, but briefly, so that they are assimilated by the people easily. Moreover, they are particularly directed to make the people shun heedlessness, to make them think and to arouse their dormant conscience.

In the first five verses man has been made to realise that the universe in which he lives in, is a most well organised and fortified Kingdom in which he cannot detect any fault, any weakness or flaw, however hard he may try to probe. This Kingdom has been brought from nothing into existence by God Almighty Himself and all the powers of controlling, administering and ruling it are also entirely in God’s hand and His power is infinite. Besides, man has also been told that in this wise system he has not been created without a purpose, but he has been sent here for a test and in this test he can succeed only by his righteous deeds and conduct.

In v. 6-11, dreadful consequences of disbelief which will appear in the Hereafter have been mentioned, and the people are told that God, by sending His Prophets, has warned them of these consequences in this very world, as if to say “Now, if you do not believe in what the Prophets say and correct your attitude and behaviour accordingly, in the Hereafter you will yourself have to admit that you really deserved the punishment that was being meted out to you.”

In v. 12-14, the truth that has been impressed on the minds is that the Creator cannot be unaware of His creation, as if to say: “He is aware of each open and hidden secret of yours, even of the innermost ideas of your hearts. Hence, the right basis of morality is that man should avoid evil, fearing the accountability of the unseen God, whether in the world there is a power to take him to task for this or not, and whether in the world there is a possibility of being harmed by such a power or not. Those who adopt such a conduct in the world alone will deserve forgiveness and a rich reward in the Hereafter.”

In v. 15-23, making allusions, one after the other to those common truths of daily occurrence, which man does not regard as worthy of much attention, he has been invited to consider them seriously. It has been said: “Look: the earth on which you move about with full satisfaction and peace of mind, and from which you obtain your sustenance has been subdued for you by God; otherwise this earth might at any time start shaking suddenly so as to cause your destruction, or a typhoon might occur, which may annihilate you completely. Look at the birds that fly above you; it is only God Who is sustaining them in the air. Look at your own means and resources: if God wills to inflict you with a punishment, none can save you from it; and if God wills to close the doors of sustenance on you, none can open them for you. These things are there to make you aware of the truth, but you see them like animals, which are unable to draw conclusions from observations, and you do not use your sight, hearing and minds which God has bestowed on you as men; that is why you do not see the right way.”

In v. 24-27, it has been said: “You have ultimately to appear before your God in any case. It is not for the Prophet to tell you the exact time and date of the event. His only duty is to warn you beforehand of its inevitable occurrence. Today you do not listen to him and demand that he should cause the event to occur and appear prematurely before you; but when it does occur, and you see it with your own eyes, you will then be astounded. Then, it will be said to you: “This is the very thing you were calling to be hastened.”

In v. 28-29 replies have been given to what the disbelievers of Makkah said against the Prophet and his Companions. They cursed the Prophet and prayed for his and the believers destruction. To this it has been said: “Whether those who call you to the right way are destroyed, or shown mercy by God, how will their fate change your destiny? You should look after yourselves and consider who would save you if you were overtaken by the punishment of God? You regard those who believe in God and put their trust in Him as the misguided. A time will come when it will become evident as to who was misguided in actual truth.”

In conclusion, the people have been asked this question and left to ponder over it: “If the water which has come out from the earth at some place in the desert or hill of Arabia and upon which depends your whole life activity, should sink and vanish underground, who beside God can restore to you this life-giving water?”

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Connection of the name of the Surah and its Ayaat

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The Surah revolves around Allah's management of His mulk [dominion].  

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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  • Intercession to be forgiven. Abu Hurairah narrated that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: سُورَةٌ مِنَ الْقُرْآنِ ثَلاَثُونَ آيَةً تَشْفَعُ لِصَاحِبِهَا حَتَّى يُغْفَرَ لَهُ "A surah of the Qur'an containing thirty verses will intercede its reader till he will be forgiven. That is: "Blessed is He in Whose Hand is the sovereignty" [Surah Mulk 67]"  Sunan Abu Dawud no. 1400
  • Yahya related to me from Malik from Ibn Shihab that Humayd ibn Abd ar-Rahman ibn Awf had told him that Surat al-Ikhlas (Sura 112) was equal to a third of the Qur'an, and that Surat al-Mulk (Sura 67) pleaded for its owner. Muwatta Malik 
  • Narrated Ibn 'Abbas: "One of the companions of the Prophet (ﷺ) pitched a tent on a grave without knowing that it was a grave. Suddenly he heard a person from the grave reciting Surah al-Mulk till he completed it. So he went to the Prophet (ﷺ) and said: 'Oh Messenger of Allah, I pitched my tent on a grave without realizing that is was a grave. Then suddenly I heard a person from the grave reciting Surah al-Mulk till he completed it.' The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: 'It is the defender, it is the deliverer - it delivers from the punishment of the grave.'" Tirmidhee no. 2890.

Special Features of the Surah

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  • Its recitation before sleep protects a person from the punishement of the grave.

Important key and unique words of the Surah

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

Period of Revelation

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Background Reasons for Revelation

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Relevant Hadith

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  • The Prophet [saw] said: “A Surah from the Qur’aan containing thirty verses will intercede for a man so that he will be forgiven. It is the Surah "Tabaarak Alathi bi yadihi’l-mulk [i.e., Surat al-Mulk].” [Tirmidhi, 2891; Abu Dawood, 1400; Ibn Maajah, 3786]

Lessons/Guidance/Major-Issues/Reflections

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Tafsir Zone

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Miscellaneous Issues

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