Watch Dr Musharraf Hussain sharing his thoughts and analysis of Surat ‘Abasa. One day, the Messenger ﷺ was preaching to the leaders of Makkah, hopeful they would accept his message. He was extremely concerned about bringing them into the fold of Islam and saving them from the Hellfire. However, Abdullah ibn Umm-al Maktum, a blind Muslim, came unexpectedly and wanted the attention of the Prophet ﷺ, saying: “Messenger! Teach me what Allah has taught you.” The Messenger ﷺ did not like this interruption and frowned at him, turning away from him and towards the Makkans leaders.
The surat commented on this incident, and thereafter the Messenger ﷺ used to say to him, “You are the man for whom my Lord censured me.” It is obvious that Abdullah was in error when he interrupted the Messenger ﷺ, who was conveying the Message. So why does the Quran censure him? A closer look at the passage reveals that the Quran wants to remove the Makkan leaders’ misunderstanding; they thought Islam needed them. However, the Quran tells them they are wrong, Islam doesn’t need them. On the other hand, it appreciates sincere people like the blind man. Whenever the Prophet ﷺ left Madinah, he would appoint Ibn Maktum as the governor. The Quran teaches respect and equality for the blind and disabled.
In the name of Allah, the Kind, the Caring
Who is most deserving of the Prophet’s attention?
1 He frowned and turned away 2 because the blind man came to him. 3 For all you know, he might have developed spiritually, 4 or listened, and the Reminder benefitted him. 5 But as for the one who thinks he is self-sufficient, 6 you paid special attention. 7 You aren’t responsible if he fails to purify himself spiritually. 8 But as for the one who came rushing to you, 9 whilst fearful of his Lord, 10 you ignored him. 11 Indeed the Quran is a Reminder, 12 for the one who wants to be reminded; 13 it is kept in scrolls, which are honoured, 14 raised and purified, 15 written by the hands of angels 16 who are noble and righteous.
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