Surah Ikhlas Ayat 1 in Arabic Text
Here you can read various translations of verse 1
Say, “He is Allah, [who is] One,
Say: He is Allah, the One and Only;
Say: “He is Allah, the One and Unique;
Say (O Muhammad (Peace be upon him)): “He is Allah, (the) One.
Say: He is Allah, the One!
Say, “He is Allah, The Only One,
Say, ‘He is God the One,
آپ کہہ دیجئے کہ وه اللہ تعالیٰ ایک (ہی) ہے
Quran 112 Verse 1 Explanation
For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Ikhlas ayat 1, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.
(112:1) Say: “He is Allah, the One and Unique;
1. The first addressee of this command is the Prophet (peace be upon him) himself for it was he who was asked: Who is your Lord and what is He like. Again it was he who was commanded to answer the question in the following words. But after him every believer is its addressee. He too should say what the Prophet (peace be upon him) had been commanded to say.
2. That is, my Lord to Whom you want to be introduced is none but Allah. This is the first answer to the questions, and it means: I have not introduced a new lord who I want you to worship beside all other gods, but it is the same Being you know by the name of Allah. Allah was not an unfamiliar word for the Arabs. They had been using this very word for the Creator of the universe since the earliest times, and they did not apply this word to any of their other gods. For the other gods they used the word ilah. Then their beliefs about Allah had become fully manifest at the time Abraha invaded Makkah. At that time there existed 360 idols of gods (ilahs) in and around the Kabah, but the polytheists forsaking all of them had invoked only Allah for protection. In other words, they knew in their hearts that no ilah could help them on that critical occasion except Allah. The Kabah was also called Bait-Allah by them and not Baitilahs after their self-made gods. At many places in the Quran the polytheistic Arabian belief about Allah has been expressed, thus:
In Surah Az-Zukhruf it has been said: If you ask them who created them, they will surely say, Allah. (Surah Az-Zukhruf, ayat 87).
In Surah Al-Ankabuut: If you ask them, who has created the earth and the heavens and who has subjected the moon and the sun. They will surely say: Allah. And if you ask them, who sent down rainwater from the sky and thereby raised the dead earth back to life. They will surely say: Allah. (Surah Al-Ankabuut, ayat 61-63).
In Surah Al-Muminun: Say to them, tell me, if you know, whose is the earth and all who dwell in it. They will say, Allah’s. Say to them: To whom do the seven heavens and the Glorious Throne belong. They will say: To Allah. Say to them: Tell me, if you know, whose is the sovereignty over everything. And who is that Being who gives protection while none else can give protection against Him. They will surely reply: This power belongs to Allah. (Surah Al-Muminun, ayat 84-89).
In Surah Younus: Ask them: Who provides for you from the heavens and the earth. Who has power over the faculties of hearing and sight. Who brings forth the living from the dead and the dead from the living. Who directs the system of the universe. They will surely reply: Allah. (Surah Younus, ayat 31).
Again in Surah Younus at another place: When you set sails in ships, rejoicing over a fair breeze, then all of a sudden a strong wind begins to rage against the passengers and waves begin to surge upon them from every side and they realize that they have been encircled by the tempest. At that time they pray to Allah with sincere faith, saying: If you deliver us from this peril, we will become Your grateful servants. But when He delivers them, the same people begin to rebel on the earth against the truth. (Surah Younus, ayat 22-23).
The same thing has been reiterated in Surah Bani Israil, thus: When a misfortune befalls you on the sea, all of those whom you invoke for help fail you but He (is there to help you), yet when He brings you safe to land, you turn away from Him. (Surah Al-Isra, ayat 67).
Keeping these verses in view, let us consider that when the people asked: Who is your Lord and what is He like to Whom service and worship you call us. The answer given was Huwa Allah: He is Allah. This answer by itself gives the meaning: My Lord is He whom you yourself acknowledge as your own as well as the whole world’s Creator, its Master, Sustainer and Administrator, and He whom you invoke for help at critical times beside all other deities, and I invite you to His service alone. This answer comprehends all the perfect and excellent attributes of Allah. Therefore, it is not at all conceivable that the Creator of the universe, its Administrator and Disposer of its affairs, Sustainer of all the creatures living in it, and the Helper of the servants in times of hardship, would not be living, hearing and seeing, that He would not be an All-Powerful, All-Knowing, All- Wise, All-Merciful and All-Kind Sovereign.
3. The scholars have explained the sentence Huwa-Allahu Ahad syntactically, but in our opinion its explanation which perfectly corresponds to the context is that Huwa is the subject and Allahu its predicate, and Ahad-un its second predicate. According to this parsing the sentence means: He (about Whom you are questioning me) is Allah, is One and only one. Another meaning can also be, and according to language rules it is not wrong either: He is Allah, the One.
Here, the first thing to be understood is the unusual use of ahad in this sentence. Usually this word is either used in the possessive case as yaum ul-ahad (first day of the week), or to indicate total negative as Ma jaa a-ni ahad-un (No one has come to me), or in common questions like Hal indaka ahadun (Is there anyone with you), or in conditional clauses like Injaa-ka ahad-un (If someone comes to you), or in counting as ahad, ithnan, ahad ashar (one, two, eleven). Apart from these uses, there is no precedent in the pre-Quranic Arabic that the mere word ahad might have been used as an adjective for a person or thing. After the revelation of the Quran this word has been used only for the Being of Allah, and for no one else. This extraordinary use by itself shows that being single, unique and matchless is a fundamental attribute of Allah; no one else in the world is qualified with this quality: He is One, He has no equal.
Then, keeping in view the questions that the polytheists and the followers of earlier scriptures asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) about his Lord, let us see how they were answered with ahad-un after Huwa-Allah.
First, it means: He alone is the Sustainer: no one else has any share or part in providence and since He alone can be the Ilah (Deity) Who is Master and Sustainer, therefore, no one else is His associate in Divinity either.
Secondly, it also means He alone is the Creator of the universe: no one else is His associate in this work of creation. He alone is the Master of the universe, the Disposer and Administrator of its system, the Sustainer of His creatures, Helper and Rescuer in times of hardship; no one else has any share or part whatever in the works of Godhead, which as you yourselves acknowledge, are works of Allah.
Thirdly, since they had also asked the questions: Of what is your Lord made? What is His ancestry? What is his sex? From whom has He inherited the world and who will inherit it after Him? All these questions have been answered with one word ahad for Allah. It means:
(1) He alone has been, and will be, God forever; neither was there a God before Him, nor will there be any after Him.
(2) There is no race of gods to which He may belong as a member: He is God, One and Single, and none is homogeneous with Him.
(3) His being is not merely One (wahid but ahad, in which there is no tinge of plurality in any way:
He is not a compound being, which may be analyzable or divisible, which may have a form and shape, which may be residing somewhere, or may contain or include something, which may have a color, which may have some limbs, which may have a direction, and which may be variable or changeable in any way. Free from every kind of plurality He alone is a Being who is Ahad in every aspect. (Here, one should fully understand that the word wahid is used in Arabic just like the word one in English. A collection consisting of great pluralities is collectively called wahid or one, as one man, one nation, one country, one world, even one universe, and every separate part of a collection is also called one. But the word Ahad is not used for anyone except Allah. That is why wherever in the Quran the word wahid has been used for Allah, He has been called Ilah wahid (one Deity), or AllahulWahid- al-Qahhar (One Allah Who is Omnipotent), and nowhere just wahid, for this word is also used for the things which contain pluralities of different kinds in their being. On the contrary, for Allah and only for Allah the word Ahad has been used absolutely, for He alone is the Being Who exists without any plurality in any way, Whose Oneness is perfect in every way.
1. Say: “He is Allah” 2. “One”. 3. “He begets not, nor was He begotten”. 4. “And there is non comparable to Him.”
Similar was recorded by At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Jarir and they added in their narration that he said,
(As-Samad) is One Who does not give birth, nor was He born, because there is nothing that is born except that it will die, and there is nothing that dies except that it leaves behind inheritance, and indeed Allah does not die and He does not leave behind any inheritance.
(And there is none comparable to Him.) This means that there is none similar to Him, none equal to Him and there is nothing at all like Him.” Ibn Abi Hatim also recorded it and At-Tirmidhi mentioned it as a Mursal narration. Then At-Tirmidhi said, “And this is the most correct.”
Al-Bukhari reported from `Amrah bint `Abdur-Rahman, who used to stay in the apartment of `A’ishah, the wife of the Prophet , that `A’ishah said, “The Prophet sent a man as the commander of a war expedition and he used to lead his companions in prayer with recitation (of the Qur’an). And he would complete his recitation with the recitation of `Say: He is Allah, One.’ So when they returned they mentioned that to the Prophet and he said,
(Ask him why does he do that.) So they asked him and he said, `Because it is the description of Ar-Rahman and I love to recite it. So the Prophet said,
(Inform him that Allah the Most High loves him.)” This is how Al-Bukhari recorded this Hadith in his Book of Tawhid. Muslim and An-Nasa’i also recorded it. In his Book of Salah, Al-Bukhari recorded that Anas said, “A man from the Ansar used to lead the people in prayer in the Masjid of Quba’. Whenever he began a Surah in the recitation of the prayer that he was leading them, he would start by reciting `Say: He is Allah, One’ until he completed the entire Surah. Then he would recite another Surah along with it (after it). And used to do this in every Rak`ah. So his companions spoke to him about this saying; `Verily, you begin the prayer with this Surah. Then you think that it is not sufficient for you unless you recite another Surah as well. So you should either recite it or leave it and recite another Surah instead.’ The man replied, `I will not leave it off. If you want me to continue leading you (in prayer), I will do this; and if you all do not like it, I will leave you (i.e., I will stop leading you).’ They used to consider him to be of the best of them to lead them in prayer and they did not want anyone else to lead them other than him. So, when the Prophet came they informed him of this information and he said,
(O so-and-so! What prevents you from doing what your companions are commanding you to do, and what makes you adhere to the recitation of this Surah in every Rak`ah) The man said, `Verily, I love it.’ The Prophet replied,
(Your love of it will cause you to enter Paradise.) This was recorded by Al-Bukhari, with a disconnected chain, but in a manner indicating his approval.
Al-Bukhari recorded from Abu Sa`id that a man heard another man reciting
(Say: “He is Allah, One.”) and he was repeating over and over. So when morning came, the man went to the Prophet and mentioned that to him, and it was as though he was belittling it. The Prophet said,
(By He in Whose Hand is my soul, verily it is equivalent to a third of the Qur’an.) Abu Dawud and An-Nasa’i also recorded it. Another Hadith Al-Bukhari recorded from Abu Sa`id, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Messenger of Allah said to his Companions,
(Is one of you not able to recite a third of the Qur’an in a single night) This was something that was difficult for them and they said, “Which of us is able to do that, O Messenger of Allah” So he replied,
(“Allah is the One, As-Samad” is a third of the Qur’an.) Al-Bukhari was alone in recording this Hadith.
Imam Malik bin Anas recorded from `Ubayd bin Hunayn that he heard Abu Hurayrah saying, “I went out with the Prophet and he heard a man reciting `Say: He is Allah, the One.’ So the Messenger of Allah said,
(It is obligatory.) I asked, `What is obligatory’ He replied,
(Paradise.)” At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa’i also recorded it by way of Malik, and At-Tirmidhi said, “Hasan Sahih Gharib. We do not know of it except as a narration of Malik.” The Hadith in which the Prophet said,
(Your love of it will cause you to enter Paradise.) has already been mentioned.
`Abdullah bin Imam Ahmad recorded from Mu`adh bin `Abdullah bin Khubayb, who reported that his father said, “We became thirsty and it had become dark while we were waiting for the Messenger of Allah to lead us in prayer. Then, when he came out he took me by my hand and said,
(Say.) Then he was silent. Then he said again,
(Say.) So I said, `What should I say’ He said,
(Say: “He is Allah, One,” and the two Surahs of Refuge (Al-Falaq and An-Nas) when you enter upon the evening and the morning three times (each). They will be sufficient for you two times every day.)” This Hadith was also recorded by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa’i. At-Tirmidhi said, “Hasan Sahih Gharib.” An-Nasa’i also recorded through another chain of narrators with the wording,
(They will suffice you against everything.)
In his Book of Tafsir, An-Nasa’i recorded from `Abdullah bin Buraydah, who reported from his father that he entered the Masjid with the Messenger of Allah , and there was a man praying and supplicating saying, “O Allah! Verily, I ask you by my testifying that there is no God worthy of worship except You. You are the One, the Self-Sufficient Sustainer of all, Who does not give birth, nor were You born, and there is none comparable to Him.” The Prophet said,
Al-Bukhari recorded from `A’ishah that whenever the Prophet would go to bed every night, he would put his palms together and blow into them. Then he would recite into them (his palms), `Say: He is Allah, One’, `Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of Al-Falaq’, and `Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of mankind.’ Then he would wipe whatever he was able to of his body with them (his palms). He would begin wiping his head and face with them and the front part of his body. He would do this (wiping his body) three times. The Sunan compilers also recorded this same Hadith.
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
(1. Say: “He is Allah, One.”) (2. “Allah As-Samad.”) (3. “He begets not, nor was He begotten.”) (4. “And there is none comparable to Him.”) The reason for the revelation of this Surah has already been mentioned. `Ikrimah said, “When the Jews said, `We worship `Uzayr, the son of Allah,’ and the Christians said, `We worship the Messiah (`Isa), the son of Allah,’ and the Zoroastrians said, `We worship the sun and the moon,’ and the idolators said, `We worship idols,’ Allah revealed to His Messenger ,
(Say: “He is Allah, One.”) meaning, He is the One, the Singular, Who has no peer, no assistant, no rival, no equal and none comparable to Him. This word (Al-Ahad) cannot be used for anyone in affirmation except Allah the Mighty and Majestic, because He is perfect in all of His attributes and actions. Concerning His saying,
(Allah As-Samad.) `Ikrimah reported that Ibn `Abbas said, “This means the One Who all of the creation depends upon for their needs and their requests.” `Ali bin Abi Talhah reported from Ibn `Abbas, “He is the Master Who is perfect in His sovereignty, the Most Noble Who is perfect in His nobility, the Most Magnificent Who is perfect in His magnificence, the Most Forbearing Who is perfect in His forbearance, the All-Knowing Who is perfect in His knowledge, and the Most Wise Who is perfect in His wisdom. He is the One Who is perfect in all aspects of nobility and authority. He is Allah, glory be unto Him. These attributes are not befitting anyone other than Him. He has no coequal and nothing is like Him. Glory be to Allah, the One, the Irresistible.” Al-A`mash reported from Shaqiq, who said that Abu Wa’il said,
(As-Samad.) is the Master Whose control is complete.”
Then Allah says,
(He begets not, nor was He begotten. And there is none comparable to Him.) meaning, He does not have any child, parent or spouse. Mujahid said,
(And there is none comparable to Him.) “This means He does not have a spouse.” This is as Allah says,
(He is the Originator of the heavens and the earth. How can He have children when He has no wife He created all things.) (6:101) meaning, He owns everything and He created everything. So how can He have a peer among His creatures who can be equal to Him, or a relative who can resemble Him Glorified, Exalted and far removed is Allah from such a thing. Allah says,
(And they say: Ar-Rahman has begotten a son. Indeed you have brought forth (said) a terrible evil thing. Whereby the heavens are almost torn, and the earth is split asunder, and the mountains fall in ruins, that they ascribe a son to Ar-Rahman. But it is not suitable for Ar-Rahman that He should beget a son. There is none in the heavens and the earth but comes unto Ar-Rahman as a slave. Verily, He knows each one of them, and has counted them a full counting. And all of them will come to Him alone on the Day of Resurrection.) (19:88-95) And Allah says,
(And they say: “Ar-Rahman has begotten a son. Glory to Him! They are but honored servants. They speak not until He has spoken, and they act on His command.) (21:26-27) Allah also says,
(And they have invented a kinship between Him and the Jinn, but the Jinn know well that they have indeed to appear before Him. Glorified is Allah! (He is free) from what they attribute unto Him!) (37:158-159) In Sahih Al-Bukhari, it is recorded (that that the Prophet said),
(There is no one more patient with something harmful that he hears than Allah. They attribute a son to Him, while it is He Who gives them sustenance and cures them.) Al-Bukhari also recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet said,
(Allah the Mighty and Majestic says, “The Son of Adam denies Me and he has no right to do so, and he abuses Me and he has no right to do so. In reference to his denial of Me, it is his saying: `He (Allah) will never re-create me like He created me before.’ But the re-creation of him is easier than his original creation. As for his cursing Me, it is his saying: `Allah has taken a son.’ But I am the One, the Self-Sufficient Master. I do not give birth, nor was I born, and there is none comparable to Me.”) This is the end of the Tafsir of Surat Al-Ikhlas, and all praise and blessings are due to Allah.
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