In the name of Allah, The Most Merciful, The Most Gracious.
(Sorry if the text is all close together nearing the bottom. I don’t know what happened. )
As promised, I will share with you what I have learned in my Tafseer Surah Al-Kahf lesson. I am using a book from Al-Azhar University by Abd Al-Khaaliq Muhammad Abd Al-Khaaliq.
Surah Al-Kahf is among the As-Suwar Al-Makkiyyah, the surahs (chapters of the Quran) that was revealed to the Prophet PBUH in Makkah Al-Mukarramah before his Hijrah(migration) to Madeenah Al-Munawwarah. Surahs in this category is mostly about faith and Tawheed, unlike As-Suwar Al-Madaniyyah(the surahs revealed after the Hijrah) that elaborates more on Fiqh(jurisprudence).
Surah Al-Kahf is among the 5 surahs that begin with Alhamdulillah (Praise be to Allah). These include Surah Al-Fatihah, Surah Al-Ana’am, Surah Saba’ and Surah Faathir. These surahs start with glorifying Allah Almighty, purifying Him from all other partners He is wrongly associated with, and also ackknowledging Him with Greatness, Majestic and Perfectness.
Surah Al-Kahf is called Al-Kahf(cave) and not Al-Ghaar(cave) as Al-Kahf, means the cave with a big opening while Al-Ghaar means a cave with a small opening. It is named “The Cave” as in this Surah, the main story, the one that occurs in many places in the Surah, and also the story with the most lessons is the story about The Youths Of The Cave, how they struggled to keep their faith strong in the period where the number of believers are few and the period is full of tests and challenges for them. Doesn’t this sound like our condition now, where Islam is graded very low in the eyes of Non-Muslims and our faith are constantly tested by entertainment, luxury etc. in this dunya(temporary world)? Allah Almighty basically revealed this Surah specifically for us youths!
Surah Al-Kahf has lots of benefits for those who read it and also those who memorise it. There are lots of Ahaadith(traditions of the Prophet PBUH) proving this. Among them,
“عَنْ أَبِي الدَّرْدَاءِ، أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ “ مَنْ حَفِظَ عَشْرَ آيَاتٍ مِنْ أَوَّلِ سُورَةِ الْكَهْفِ عُصِمَ مِنَ الدَّجَّالِ
Abu Darda’ reported Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) as saying:If anyone learns by heart the first ten verses of the Surah al-Kahf, he will be protected from the Dajjal.
(English reference: Book 4, Hadith 1766)
(Arabic reference: Book 7, Hadith 1919)
((عَنْ أَبِي الدَّرْدَاءِ، أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ((من قرأ العشر الأواخر من سورة الكهف عصم من فتنة الدجال
Abu Darda’ reported Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) as saying:
Whoever recites the last ten verses of Surah Al-Kahf, he will be protected from the fitnah of the Dajjaal.
(I could not find the reference)
“قَالَ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم “من قرأ سورة الكهف في يوم الجمعة أضاء له من النور ما بينه وبين الجمعتين
Allah’s Apostle PBUH said: Whoever recites Surah Al-Kahf on a Friday, he will be illuminated by The Light between the two Fridays (The Friday he read the Surah and the next Friday).
(I could not find the reference.)
What is the link between reading this Surah and Dajjal have?
This Surah has lots in it about the end times. Dajjal will appear near the end times. See the relationship?
Surah Al-Kahf has 3 of the finest stories in the Quran:
1) The story of The Inhabitants of The Cave
– It is a story of self-sacrifice in the path of believe in Allah Almighty. It is about youths that left their houses and went out of their country to save their faith and hid in a cave far from the eyes of the oppressors. Then they stayed in there asleep for 309 years and after that, Allah Almighty woke them up after those long years of sleep into a period where their oppressors are long dead.
2) The story of Musa Upon Him Peace and Khidr Upon Him Peace
– It is a story of humbling self in the path of seeking knowledge, and also not to be fooled by the nafs saying that what you know is enough, even though a person has reached high ranks and is very knowledgable. This story also explains the concept of ((…but over every possessor of knowledge is one [more] knowing.))12:76. In this story also, it reveals to us some of the things that we can’t see like the future that Allah Almighty gave His worshipping piety slave, Khidr. This knowledge was not reveal to Musa alayhissalaam until Khidr alayhissalaam told him, like the story of the boat, the killing of a little boy and building a wall.
3) The story of Iskandar DzulQarnain, a king that Allah Almighty has instilled in his(DzulQarnain) self taqwa (God conscious) and fairness to spread his kingdom with prosperity, and to rule the west and east of this Earth. It was him who built the great wall confining the Yajuj and Majuj (Gog and Magog).
There are also 3 real examples that really happened in this surah that shows that the Truth is not linked to lots of money and kingdom, but instead, it is linked to faith in Allah Almighty.:
1) An egoistic rich person proud of his wealth and a poor person proud of his faith and belief in the story of The Owners Of The Two Gardens. The one who is proud of his wealth eventually lost all his possessions.
2) The life of this world and what damages/destroys it in the form of demise and doom.
3) The example of pride and egoism and self-deceit in the story of Iblees refusing to prostrate to Adam alayhissalaam, of which caused him to be driven out of paradise and also forbade him from that beautiful place.
This surah too shows the proof of the Oneness of Allah Almighty and also that Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him is indeed the Prophet that Allah revealed the Quran to.
ps. One might be wondering why did Allah Almighty brings all this stories in the Quran and why He did not just present laws and rules of Islam just like that.
The real reason only Allah Almighty knows but common sense tells us that by presenting rules and morals in a form of a story, one may remember and understand the lesson and also warning better. It is also to make the inner meaning of the story nearer to our brains and hearts.
FYI: What is the difference between tafseer, ta’weel and tarjamah?
Tafseer is the inner meaning of the verse itself. Ta’weel is to try to explain the inner meaning of a parable. Tarjamah is the direct translation of the verse.
That is all for this post. Please inform me of any errors. All the good here is from Allah Almighty who moved my fingers over the keyboard and share this with you readers, while all the bad here is from me, who does not know except what Allah Almighty wants me to know.
Allah Almighty said in the Quran:
“Exalted are You; we have no knowledge except what You have taught us. Indeed, it is You who is the Knowing, the Wise.” 2:32