Regarding Letters in the Beginning of Some Suwar

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

The following is extracted from Ruh al-Bayan by Shaykh Ibrahim Niyas al-Kawlakhi at-Tijani (q.s.), and translated by Ustadz Moctar Boubakar.

Letters such as ‘Alif, Lam, Mim’, are most disturbing to the Arabs because they could not comprehend anything regarding their meaning.  Although the Qur’an is a miracle in its fluency, eloquence and in the fact that it informs about hidden matters, the Arabs do nevertheless understand it.  They were Arabs and understood everything that came in the Qur’an until these letters appeared in the beginning of suwar.

They did not get the least bit of taste for their meaning and as a result they became the greatest disturbance to them.  Besides their disbelief and stubbornness, they were nevertheless Arabs and fluent in linguistics.  They were aware of the tafsir for the speech of the Arabs.  Every word in Arabic holds several meanings that are in occurrence with the temperament associated with that word in linguistics.

However, not withstanding, all their linguistics proficiency as just exposed through the above examples, the Arabs did not get the least taste regarding the meaning of these letters at the beginning of suwar.  They were a greater disturbance to them than all the miracles of the Qur’an.  The first to be revealed amongst these groups of letters is “Kaf, Ha’, Ya’, ‘Ayn, Swad.”  When Jibril (a.s.) would come down with a verse, he would read it until its end and would also give its tafsir.  And then the Prophet (s.a.w.) would read it as Jibril (a.s.) read it.

However, when Jibril (a.s.) came with the revelation, Kaf, the Prophet (s.a.w.) said, “I have understood,” and then Ha’, “I have understood,” and then, Ya’, “I have understood,” ‘Ayn, “I have understood,” and Swad, “I have understood.”  This shows that the Prophet (s.a.w.) knew its tafsir before Jibril (a.s.).  Because of this, Jibril (a.s.) then understood that this is, in fact, a secret hidden even from the conveyor of the Qur’an.


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