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Surah Nur Ayat 30 in Arabic Text

قُل لِّلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ يَغُضُّواْ مِنۡ أَبۡصَٰرِهِمۡ وَيَحۡفَظُواْ فُرُوجَهُمۡۚ ذَٰلِكَ أَزۡكَىٰ لَهُمۡۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ خَبِيرُۢ بِمَا يَصۡنَعُونَ
Qul lilmu’ mineena yaghuuddoo min absaarihim wa yahfazoo furoojahum; zaalika azkaa lahum; innallaaha khabeerum bimaa yasna’oon

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 30

Sahih International
Tell the believing men to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts. That is purer for them. Indeed, Allah is Acquainted with what they do.

Yusuf Ali
Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: And Allah is well acquainted with all that they do.

Abul Ala Maududi
And O Prophet, enjoin the Believing men to restrain their gaze and guard their private parts. This is a more righteous way for them: Allah has knowledge of what they do.

Muhsin Khan
Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.). That is purer for them. Verily, Allah is All-Aware of what they do.

Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and be modest. That is purer for them. Lo! Allah is aware of what they do.

Dr. Ghali
Say to the (male) believers, that they cast down their be holdings, (i.e., “modestly” cast down their eyes) and preserve their private parts; that is more cleansing for them. Surely Allah is Ever-Cognizant of whatever they work out.

Abdel Haleem
[Prophet], tell believing men to lower their glances and guard their private parts: that is purer for them. God is well aware of everything they do.

Muhammad Junagarhi
مسلمان مردوں سے کہو کہ اپنی نگاہیں نیچی رکھیں، اور اپنی شرمگاہوں کی حفاﻇت رکھیں۔ یہی ان کے لئے پاکیزگی ہے، لوگ جو کچھ کریں اللہ تعالیٰ سب سے خبردار ہے

Quran 24 Verse 30 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Nur ayat 30, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.


(24:30) (O Prophet), enjoin believing men to cast down their looks[29] and guard their private parts.[30] That is purer for them. Surely Allah is well aware of all what they do.

29. The word ghadd means to reduce, shorten or lower down something. Accordingly, ghadd basar is generally translated as lowering the gaze or keeping it lowered. But the command of ghadd basar does not imply that the gaze should always be kept lowered. It only means to imply that one should restrain his gaze and avoid casting of looks freely. That is, if it is not desirable to see a thing, one should turn the eyes away and avoid having a look at it. The restriction of a restrained gaze is applicable only in a limited sphere. The context in which the words occur shows that this restriction applies to the men’s gazing at women, or casting looks at the satar of the other persons, or fixing the eyes at indecent scenes.

The details of this divine commandment as explained in the Sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him) are given below.

(1) It is not lawful for a man to cast a full gaze at the other women except at his own wife or the mahram women of his family. The chance look is pardonable but not the second look which one casts when one feels the lure of the object. The Prophet (peace be upon him) has termed such gazing and glancing as wickedness of the eyes. He has said that man commits adultery with all his sensory organs. The evil look at the other woman is the adultery of the eyes; lustful talk is the adultery of the tongue; relishing the other woman’s voice is adultery of the ears; and touching her body with the hand or walking for an unlawful purpose is adultery of the hands and feet. After these preliminaries the sexual organs either bring the act of adultery to completion or leave it incomplete. (Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Daud).

According to a tradition related by Buraidah, the Prophet (peace be upon him) instructed Ali: O Ali, do not cast a second look after the first look. The first look is pardonable but not the second one. (Tirmizi;, Ahmad, Abu Daud). Jarir bin Abdullah Bajali says that he asked the Prophet, What should I do if I happen to cast a chance look? The Prophet (peace be upon him) replied: Turn your eyes away or lower your gaze. (Muslim, Ahmad, Tirmizi, Abu Daud, Nasai). Abdullah bin Masud quotes the Prophet (peace be upon him) as having said: Allah says that the gaze is one of the poisonous arrows of Satan. Whoever forsakes it, out of His fear, he will be rewarded with a faith whose sweetness he will relish in his own heart. (Tabarani). According to a tradition related by Abu Umamah, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: If a Muslim happens to glance at the charms of a woman and then turns his eyes away, Allah will bless his worship and devotion and will make it all the more sweet. (Musnad Ahmad). Imam Jafar Sadiq has quoted from his father, Imam Muhammad Baqir, who has quoted Jabir bin Abdullah Ansari as saying: On the occasion of the Farewell Pilgrimage, Fadal bin Abbas, who was a young cousin of the Prophet (peace be upon him), was riding with him on the camel-back during the return journey from Masharal-Haram. When they came to a few women passing on the way, Fadal started looking at them. Thereupon the Prophet (peace be upon him) put his hand on his face and turned it to the other side. (Abu Da’ud). On another occasion during the same pilgrimage, a woman of the clan of Khatham stopped the Prophet (peace be upon him) on the way and sought clarification about a certain matter pertaining to Hajj. Fadal bin Abbas fixed his gaze at her, but the Prophet turned his face to the other side. (Bukhari, Abu Daud, Tirmizi). (2) Nobody should have the misunderstanding that the command to restrain the gaze was enjoined because the women were allowed to move about freely with open faces, for if veiling of the face had already been enjoined, the question of restraining or not restraining the gaze would not have arisen. This argument is incorrect rationally as well as factually. It is incorrect rationally because even when veiling of the face is the usual custom, occasions can arise where a man and a woman come face to face with each other suddenly, or when a veiled woman has to uncover her face under necessity. Then even if the Muslim women observe hijab, there will be non-Muslim women who will continue to move about unveiled. Thus, the commandment to lower the gaze or restrain the eyes, does not necessarily presume existence of a custom allowing the women to move about with unveiled faces. It is incorrect factually because the custom of hijab which was introduced after the revelation of the commandments in Surah Al- Ahzab included veiling of the face, and this is supported by a number of traditions relating to the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) himself. Aishah in her statement relating to the incident of the slander, which has been narrated on the authority of reliable reporters, has said: When I came back to the camp, and found that the caravan had left, I lay down and was overpowered by sleep. In the morning when Safwan bin Muattal passed that way he recognised me because he had seen me before the commandment of hijab had been sent down. On recognising me he exclaimed: Inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi rajiun: To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return; and I awoke and covered my face with my sheet. (Bukhari, Muslim, Ahmad, Ibn Jarir, Ibn Hisham). Abu Daud contains an incident that when the son of Umm Khallad was killed in a battle, she came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) to enquire about him and was wearing the veil as usual. It was natural to presume that on such a sad occasion one is liable to lose one’s balance and ignore the restrictions of hijab. But when questioned she said: I have certainly lost my son but not my modesty. Another tradition in Abu Daud quoted on the authority of Aishah relates that a woman handed an application to the Prophet (peace be upon him) from behind a curtain. The Prophet enquired: Is it a man’s hand or a woman’s? She replied that it was a woman’s. Thereupon the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: If it is a woman’s hand, the nails at least should have been coloured with henna! As regards to the two incidents relating to the occasion of Hajj, which we have mentioned above, they cannot be used as an argument to prove that the veil was not in vogue in the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him). This is because wearing of the veil is prohibited in the state of ihram. However, even in that state pious women did not like to uncover their faces before the other men. Aishah has stated that during the Farewell Pilgrimage when they were moving towards Makkah in the state of ihram, the women would lower down their head sheets over their faces whenever the travellers passed by them, and would uncover their faces as soon as they had passed by. (Abu Daud). (3) There are certain exceptions to the command of lowering the gaze or restraining the look. These exceptions relate to occasions when it is really necessary to see a woman, for instance, when a man intends to marry her. It is not only permissible to see the woman in such a case but even commendable. Mughirah bin Shubah has stated: I wanted to marry in a certain family. The Holy Prophet asked me whether I had seen the girl or not. When 1 replied in the negative, he said: Have a look at her; this will enhance harmonious relationship between you two. (Ahmad, Tirmizi, Nasai, Ibn Majah, Darimi). According to a tradition related by Abu Hurairah, a man wanted to marry in a family of the Ansar. The Prophet (peace be upon him) asked him to have a look at the girl, for the Ansar usually had a defect in their eyes. (Muslim, Nasai, Ahmad). According to Jabir bin Abdullah, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: When a person from among you wants to marry a woman, he should have a look at her to satisfy himself that there is some quality in the woman which induces him to marry her. (Ahmad, Abu Daud). According to another tradition emanating from Abu Humaidah and quoted in Musnad Ahmad, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said that there was no harm in such a procedure. He also permitted that the girl may be seen without her being aware of it. From this the jurists have concluded that there is no harm in looking at a woman when it is really necessary. For instance, there is no harm in looking at a suspect woman when investigating a crime, or in the judge’s looking at a female witness, who appears in the court, or in the physician’s looking at a female patient, etc. (4) The intention of the command to restrain the gaze also implies that no man or woman should look at the private parts of the other man or woman. The Prophet (peace be upon him) has said: No man should look at the satar of another man nor a woman at the satar of another woman. (Ahmad, Muslim, Abu Daud, Tirmizi). Ali has quoted the Prophet (peace be upon him) as saying: Do not look at the thigh of another person, living or dead. (Abu Daud, Ibn Majah).

30. Guard their private parts: Abstain from illicit sexual gratification and from exposing their satar before others. For males, the satar is the part of the body from the navel to the knee, and it is not permissible to expose that part of the body intentionally before anybody except one’s own wife. (Daraqutni, Baihaqi). Jarhad Aslami states that once he was sitting in the company of the Prophet (peace be upon him) with his thigh exposed. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Do you not know that the thigh has to be kept concealed. (Tirmizi, Abu Daud, Muatta). AIi reports that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Do not expose your thigh. (Abu Daud, Ibn Majah). Not only is the satar to be kept concealed before others but even when alone. The Prophet has warned: Beware, never remain naked, for with you are those (that is, the angels of goodness and mercy), who never leave you alone except when you ease yourself or you go to your wives. So feel shy of them and give them due respect. (Tirmizi). According to another tradition, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Guard your satar from everybody except from your wife and your slave-girl. The questioner asked: Even when we are alone? The Prophet (peace be upon him) replied: Yes, even when alone, for Allah has a greater right that you should feel shy of Him. (Abu Daud, Tirmizi, Ibn Majah).


30. Tell the believing men to lower their gaze, and protect their private parts. That is purer for them. Verily, Allah is All-Aware of what they do.) The Command to lower the Gaze This is a command from Allah to His believing servants, to lower their gaze from looking at things that have been prohibited for them. They should look only at what is permissible for them to look at, and lower their gaze from forbidden things. If it so happens that a person’s gaze unintentionally falls upon something forbidden, he should quickly look away. Muslim recorded in his Sahih that Jarir bin `Abdullah Al-Bajali, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “I asked the Prophet about the sudden glance, and he commanded me to turn my gaze away. In the Sahih it is narrated that Abu Sa`id said that the Messenger of Allah said:

«إِيَّاكُمْ وَالْجُلُوسَ عَلَى الطُّرُقَاتِ»

(Beware of sitting in the streets.) They said, “O Messenger of Allah, we have no alternative but to sit in the streets to converse with one another.” The Messenger of Allah said:

«إِنْ أَبَيْتُمْ فَأَعْطُوا الطَّرِيقَ حَقَّهُ»

(If you insist, then give the street its rights.) They asked, “What are the rights of the street, O Messenger of Allah” He said,

«غَضُّ الْبَصَرِ، وَكَفُّ الْأَذَى، وَرَدُّ السَّلَامِ، وَالْأَمْرُ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ، وَالنَّهْيُ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ»

(Lower your gaze, return the greeting of Salam, enjoin what is good and forbid what is evil.) Abu Al-Qasim Al-Baghawi recorded that Abu Umamah said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah say:

«اكْفُلُوا لِي سِتًّا أَكْفُلْ لَكُمْ بِالْجَنَّةِ: إِذَا حَدَّث أَحَدُكُمْ فَلَا يَكْذِبْ، وَإِذَا ائْتُمِنَ فَلَا يَخُنْ،وَإِذَا وَعَدَ فَلَا يُخْلِفْ، وَغُضُّوا أَبْصَارَكُمْ، وَكُفُّوا أَيْدِيَكُمْ، وَاحْفَظُوا فُرُوجَكُمْ»

(Guarantee me six things and I will guarantee you Paradise: when any one of you speaks, he should not lie; if he is entrusted with something, he should not betray that trust; if he makes a promise, he should not break it; lower your gaze; restrain your hands; and protect your private parts.) Since looking provokes the heart to evil, Allah commanded (the believers) to protect their private parts just as he commanded them to protect their gaze which can lead to that. So he said:

﴿قُلْ لِّلْمُؤْمِنِينَ يَغُضُّواْ مِنْ أَبْصَـرِهِمْ وَيَحْفَظُواْ فُرُوجَهُمْ﴾

(Tell the believing men to lower their gaze, and protect their private parts.) Sometimes protecting the private parts may involve keeping them from committing Zina, as Allah says:

﴿وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِفُرُوجِهِمْ حَـفِظُونَ ﴾

(And those who guard their chastity) ﴿23:5﴾. Sometimes it may involve not looking at certain things, as in the Hadith in Musnad Ahmad and the Sunan:

«احْفَظْ عَوْرَتَكَ إِلَّا مِنْ زَوْجَتِكَ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ يَمِينُكَ»

(Guard your private parts except from your wife and those whom your right hands possess.)

﴿ذلِكَ أَزْكَى لَهُمْ﴾

(That is purer for them.) means, it is purer for their hearts and better for their commitment to religion, as it was said: Whoever protects his gaze, Allah will illuminate his understanding, or his heart.

﴿إِنَّ اللَّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا يَصْنَعُونَ﴾

(Verily, Allah is All-Aware of what they do.) This is like the Ayah :

﴿يَعْلَمُ خَآئِنَةَ الاٌّعْيُنِ وَمَا تُخْفِى الصُّدُورُ ﴾

(Allah knows the fraud of the eyes and all that the breasts conceal.) ﴿40:19﴾ In the Sahih it is recorded that Abu Hurayrah, may Allah be pleased with him, said that the Messenger of Allah said:

«كُتِبَ عَلَى ابْنِ آدَمَ حَظُّهُ مِنَ الزِّنَا أَدْرَكَ ذَلِكَ لَا مَحَالَةَ، فَزِنَا الْعَيْنَيْنِ النَّظَرُ، وَزِنَا اللِّسَانِ النُّطْقُ، وَزِنَا الْأُذُنَيْنِ الْاسْتِمَاعُ، وَزِنَا الْيَدَيْنِ الْبَطْشُ، وَزِنَا الرِّجْلَيْنِ الْخُطَى، وَالنَّفْسُ تَمَنَّى وَتَشْتَهِي، وَالْفَرْجُ يُصَدِّقُ ذَلِكَ أَوْ يُكَذِّبُهُ»

(The son of Adam has his share of Zina decreed for him, and he will commit that which has been decreed. The Zina of the eyes is looking; the Zina of the tongue is speaking; the Zina of the ears is listening; the Zina of the hands is striking; and the Zina of the feet is walking. The soul wishes and desires, and the private parts confirm or deny that.) It was recorded by Al-Bukhari without a complete chain. Muslim recorded a similar report with a different chain of narration. Many of the Salaf said, “They used to forbid men from staring at beardless handsome boys. ”

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