Name of Chapter Al-Baqarah , 36 verses Number 36

فَأَزَلَّهُمَا الشَّيْطَانُ عَنْهَا فَأَخْرَجَهُمَا مِمَّا كَانَا فِيهِ وَقُلْنَا اهْبِطُواْ بَعْضُكُمْ لِبَعْضٍ عَدُوٌّ وَلَكُمْ فِي الأَرْضِ مُسْتَقَرٌّ وَمَتَاعٌ إِلَى حِينٍ

Translate:
Translation (Tahereh Saffarzadeh): [After hearing the Command] did Satan cause them slip from the Garden, and drove them out of [the state of Divine Happiness] that they were in; [after failed the trial] We stated: "Get you down, [from the exalted Paradise] all of you with enmity between yourselves; on the earth shall be an abode for you and a provision for a fixed time [before you die]."
Interpretation:

Source: Tafsir Al-MIZAN (Volume: 1, Page: 186-188, Chapter: 2- Surah Baqarah,Verse: 36)

Interpreter: al-Allamah as-Sayyid Muhammad Husayn at-Tabatabai

Translator: Sayyid Saeed Akhtar Rizvi

Publication Place: World Organization for Islamic Services (WOFIS)

             

QUR’AN: But the Satan made them both slip from it: The Satan could have misled them by creating evil thoughts in their hearts, in the same way as he misleads other human beings. But many verses, in the three narratives quoted at the beginning of this commentary, show that the Satan had appeared before Adam and his wife, and had talked to them face to face:

So We said: “O Adam! surely this is an enemy to you and to your wife” (20:117). Allàh had pointed out the Satan to Adam, not by any verbal description but by showing to him the person of the said enemy. (Note the demonstrative pronoun, “this is”.)

(The Satan) said: “O Adam! shall I guide you to the tree of immortality . . .” (20:120). The speaker, that is, the Satan, must have talked to Adam face to face.

And he (i.e. the Satan) swore to them both: “Most surely I am a sincere adviser to you” (7:21). Obviously, he was visible to Adam and his wife and swore during his talk with them.

. . . and their Lord called out to them: “Did I not forbid you both from that tree and say to you that the Satan is your open enemy?” (7:22) It indicates that the Satan was visible to Adam and his wife. If the Satan had misled them by creating evil thoughts into their minds without appearing before them, they could have said to Allàh that they were not aware that that thought was put into their minds by the Satan; that they mistook it to be their own thought because the Satan had not appeared before them.

They used to see and recognize the Satan. Likewise, other prophets - all of them covered by Allàh’s protection - used to see and recognize him if and when he came to them. Many traditions mention such encounters in the stories of Nùh, Ibrâhim, Musa, ‘Isa, Yahya, Ayyùb, Ismà‘il and Muhammad (may Allàh bless him and his progeny as well as the prophets).

The above-quoted verses as well as the verse 7:20 (and he said: “Your Lord has not forbidden from this tree except that…”) also show that the Satan had visited then near that tree in the Garden. He entered the Garden, talked to them and put evil suggestion before them. He was able to do so because the Garden was not the Garden of eternal abode. The Qur’àn also says that Adam, his wife and the Satan all were removed from the Garden together. (Of course, Allàh had said to the Satan: “Then get down from this, for it does not befit you to behave proudly therein” (7:13). But the pronouns “this” and “therein” may refer to the angels or to the heaven. It may mean: Get down from the company of the angels; or, get down from the heaven, as it is a place of honour.)

QUR’AN: and We said: “Get down, some of you being the enemies of others…”: The second person pronouns, used in this verse, are plural, which denote at least three persons. Clearly, it was addressed to Adam, his wife and the Satan. The Satan was turned out of the heaven and/or the company of the angels before (as described above). This verse combines in itself that previous order too; and manifests the firm decree of Allàh establishing enmity between Iblis on one side and Adam and his wife and their descendants on the other. It also promulgates another decree that they shall live in the earth, die therein, and be raised again from it.

It may safely be said that the whole human race (Adam together with his descendants) is covered by the last mentioned decree: Therein shall you live, and therein shall you die, and from it shall you be raised (7:25). This verse comes at the end of the story (in Chapter 7) which begins with the following words: And certainly We created you, then We fashioned you, then We said to the angels: “Prostrate before Adam”… (7:11). In both verses plural pronouns have been used; and it is an indication that the creation and the decree to live and die in the earth includes more than two, that is, other human beings too besides Adam and his wife.

The story of Adam may have been used by Allàh to represent the rise, fall and rise again of the whole mankind. Adam was the first representative of humanity, and his life was a symbol, a miniature, of the human beings life span in this world.

The angels were told to prostrate before Adam, because he was the vicegerent of Allàh in the earth. It has been mentioned earlier that this vicegerency was bestowed on the whole mankind. The angels prostrated before Adam, as he was the symbol of humanity, the representative of his race.

Adam and his wife were placed in the Garden and then were sent down from there because they had eaten of the forbidden tree. Every man may see his own face in this mirror. His soul, before coming to this world, enjoyed the sublime and lofty existence; his abode was spiritually near to his Lord - a place of joy and happiness, of splendor and light; in the company of purified companions and spiritual friends, near to Allàh, the Lord of the worlds. Then he opted for this transient life, and was at once entangled in the troubles and toils of this world; leaving that purified existence, he was attracted to this tedious and odious life.

Adam at once repented and prayed for the mercy of Allàh. In the same way, man may return to Allàh and consequently to the eternal abode of honour and bliss. But if he took the wrong turning, did not try to return to Allàh, and, in short, followed his base desires, he would change the bounty of Allàh into disbelief and ungratefulness, would direct himself to the place of disgrace - to the hell; and how evil that resting place is!

 

TRADITIONS

Pages 205-210

2. al-’Ayyàshi narrated in his at-Tafsir from one of the two (i.e., the fifth or the sixth) Imams, that he was asked as to why Allàh punished Adam for his forgetfulness. He said: “He had not forgotten; and how could he forget when he had remembered it (very well) and (even) Iblis had told him: Your Lord has not forbidden you from this tree except that you may not both become two angels or that you may (not) become of the immortals.”

The way to harmonize these seemingly conflicting traditions is clear if one applies to them the foregoing explanation.

Abu ’s-Salt al-Harawî said: “al-Ma’mùn gathered for ‘Ali ibn Mùsà ar-Ridà (a.s.) people of various sects from among the Muslims, the Jews, the Christians, the Magians, the Sabaeans and all other religions. Nobody stood (for religious discussion with the lmàm) but that he was forced to accept his (Imàm’s) arguments and was put to silence. Then stood before him ‘Ali ibn Muhammad ibn al-Jahm and said to him: ‘Do you believe in sinlessness of the prophets? O son of the Messenger of Allàh!’ He said: ‘Yes.’ He (‘Ali ibn Muhammad ibn al-Jahm) said: ‘Then what would you do with the words of Allàh: and Adam disobeyed his Lord, so he got astray? …’ Then said our master, ar-Ridà (a.s.): 'Woe unto you! O 'Ali! Have fear of Allah (in your heart) and do not ascribe indecencies to the prophets of Allâh, and do not interpret by your own opinion the Book of Allah (Mighty and Great is He!) Verily Allâh (Mighty and Great is He!) says:... but none knows its interpretation except Allâh and those who are firmly rooted in knowledge (3:7). As for the words of Allâh, and Adam disobeyed his Lord, so he got astray, (the fact is that) Allâh (Mighty and Great is He!) had created Adam (to be) His proof in His earth and (to be) His vicegerent in His towns; He had not created him for the Garden; and the disobedience was (done) by Adam in the Garden, and not in the earth; (and it came to pass) so that the measures of the decree of Allâh (Mighty and Great is He) might be fulfilled. So when he was sent down to the earth and was made (Allah’s) proof and vicegerent, he was protected (i.e. became sinless), as Allâh says: Surely Allah chose Adam and Nuh and the descendants of Ibrahim and the descendants of 'Imran above all the worlds.'" (3:33) (al-Amali, as-Saduq)

The author says: The sentence, "and the disobedience was... in the Garden", points to what we have already mentioned that there was no religious law ordained in the Garden; and that Adam (a.s.) even before his creation, was destined to live in the earth; and, therefore, the disobedience was of an advice, and not of an ordained law. In this context, there appears no reason why anyone should try (as someone has done) to explain away this tradition in a round-about way.

'Ali ibn Muhammad ibn al-Jahm said: "I was present in the court of al-Ma'mun; and Ali ibn Musa was there with him. And al-Ma'mun said to him: 'O son of the Messenger of Allâh! Is it not your belief that the prophets are sinless?' He said: 'Yes.' (al-Ma'mum) said: 'Then what is the meaning of the words of Allâh, the High: and Adam disobeyed his Lord, so he got astray?' (The Imam) said: 'Verily Allâh said to Adam: dwell you and your wife in the Garden and eat (you both) freely wherever you (two) wish and do not approach (you two) this tree, (pointing to a tree) for then you (two) will be of the unjust. Allah did not say to him: Do not eat from this tree nor from another tree of its kind. And they did not eat from it; they ate from another (similar) tree because the Satan whispered evil suggestion to them and said: "Your Lord has not forbidden you from this (i.e. the other similar) tree; He has only forbidden you from approaching that one; and He has not forbidden you from that three except that you may not both become two angels or that you may not become of the immortals." And he swore to them both: "Most surely I am a sincere adviser to you."  "And Adam and Hawwa' had not seen before that anyone swearing falsely in the name of Allah; thus he caused them to fall by deceit and they ate from that (tree) because they believed in his oath in the name of Allâh. And it all happened before Adam was made a prophet, and it was not a big sin leading one to the fire; it was only a forgiven minor (sin) that is permissible to the prophets before they begin receiving revelation. But when Allâh chose him and made him prophet he became sinless, not committing any minor or major sin. Allâh (Mighty and Great is He!) has said: Surely Allâh chose Adam and Nuh and the descendants of Ibrahim and the descendants of 'Imran above all the worlds…'" ('Uyunu 'l-akhbâr)

The author says: as-Saduq (May Allâh have mercy on him!) after narrating the tradition in full, has commented as follows:

"Strange that 'Ali ibn Muhammad ibn al-Jahm, in spite of his open hostility towards, and enmity and hatred of, Ahlu 'l-bayt (a.s.), should narrate this tradition."

This comment only looks at the belief of the sinlessness of the prophets which this tradition purportedly proves; but as-Saduq (May Allah have mercy on him!) did not look deep into its implications. The reported reply is not in accord with the well-known belief of the lmâms of Ahlu 'l-bayt, that all the prophets were fully protected from all major and minor sins before as well as after getting the prophethood.

Moreover, the reply presumes that the verse does not mean what it apparently says. According to this tradition, the verse, "Your Lord has not forbidden you from this tree except that you may not both become two angels . . . ", should be read as follows: “Your Lord has not forbidden you from this (i.e. the other similar) tree; He has only forbidden you from approaching that one; and He has not forbidden you from that tree except that you may not both become two angels …” Such deletions are against the norms of eloquence. The quoted speech of the Satan clearly shows that he was instigating them to eat from the very tree that was forbidden, holding out to them the hope of becoming angels or immortals: “Your Lord has not forbidden you from this tree except that you may not both become two angels or that you may (not) become of the immortals.” “O Adam! shall I guide you to the tree of immortality and a kingdom which decays not?” The narrator, that is, ‘Ali ibn Muhammad ibn al-Jahm, had himself been given the correct and complete answer in the court of al-Ma’mùn, as the preceding tradition shows; therefore, there is something wrong in this narration of his, although some parts may be somehow interpreted correctly.

As-Sadùq has narrated (through his chain) from al-Bàqir (a.s.), through his forefathers, from ‘Ali (a.s.) that the Messenger of Allàh (s.a.w.a.) said: “Adam and Hawwà’ stayed in the Garden, (till they were sent out of it) for seven hours according to the (counting of the) days of the world, until Allàh sent them down on the same day.”

‘Abdullàh ibn Sinan said: “Abù ‘Abdillàh (a.s.) was asked and I was present there: ‘How long did Adam and his wife stay in the Garden until their mistake removed them from it?’ He said: ‘Verily Allàh breathed His spirit into Adam after the midday on Friday; then created his wife from his lowest rib; then He made His angels prostrate before him and placed him in His Garden the same day. And by God! he did not stay therein but six hours of the same day until he disobeyed Allàh. Thereupon, Allàh removed them both from it after the sunset, and they were put into the courtyard of the Garden till the morning; then their nakedness became manifest to them; and their Lord called out to them: “Did I not forbid you both from that tree?” Adam felt ashamed and bowed (his head) and said: “Our Lord! We have been unjust to ourselves and we confess our sins; therefore, forgive us (our sins).” Allàh said to them: “Get down you both from My heavens to the earth; because no sinner shall remain in My nearness - neither in My Garden nor in My heavens." ' " (at-Tafsir, al-'Ayyàshi)

The author says: The tradition gives a new detail, that Adam and Hawwà’ were removed first from the Garden to its courtyard and then from the courtyard to the earth. There are some indications in the Qur’àn to support this information:

First: They were twice told to “get down” (vide vs. 2:36 and 2:38). It was a creative, and not a legislative, order, and a creative order takes effect the instant it is given.

If the first order told them to get down to the earth, there was no question of their not getting down to the earth at once; and, therefore, the second order would be superfluous. But in the light of this tradition the two commands would be perfectly in order.

Second: As mentioned in the commentary, this idea may be inferred from the changed verbs and pronouns of the verses. Allàh describes in these words his talk with Adam when he was being placed in the Garden: And We said: “O Adam! dwell you and your wife in the Garden… and do not approach (you two) this tree…” But after they had eaten from the tree, their Lord called out to them: “Did I not forbid you both from that tree?” The verb, “We said” of the former has been changed to “called out to them” in the latter; as the demonstrative pronoun, “this tree” (showing nearness) was replaced by “that tree” (showing distance). These changes show that Adam had been removed, by the time of the second address, from his original place of nearness in the Garden to a distant place - which the tradition describes as the courtyard.

But this tradition says that Hawwà’ was created from the lowest rib of Adam; it is a Biblical story which has been totally rejected by the lmàms of Ahlu ’l-bayt, (as will be seen from the traditions which will be quoted under the verses of the creation of Adam). This tradition, therefore, is unacceptable unless this expression is taken to mean that Hawwà’ was created from the clay left over from the creation of Adam and which was lying near his lowest rib.

Whether he stayed in the Garden for six hours (as this tradition says) or seven (as the former says) is not very important, because such things are mere approximation.

 

Source: Tafsir-e-Nemouneh (Exemplary) in Brief, Volume: 1, Page: 64-65, Chapter: 2, Surah: Al-Baqarah, Verse:36

Interpreter: Makarem Shirazi, Naser

Translator: Mansoor Aminy _ Baghbadorani

Publication Place: Amir-Al-Momenin Seminary, Qom - Iran 

 

THE TRANSLATION

 

THEN SATAN CAUSED THEM TO SLIP THEREFROM, AND BROUGHT THEM OUT OF THAT THEY WERE IN, (OUT OF THE GARDEN OF BLISS) AND WE SAID: ``GET YOU ALL DOWN, SOME OF YOU ENEMIES TO SOME OTHER. AND ON EARTH WILL BE YOUR DWELLING-PLACE, AND YOUR MEANS OF LIVELIHOOD FOR A TIME BEING.

 

THE COMMENTARY

     Adam submitted to divine commandments, but SATAN who was the power of evil with the root of perversity and enmity, tempted them (HE & HIS WIFE) and caused them to slip down from a higher to a lower state, bringing them out of the GARDEN! ``And We said to them: Get you all down, some of you enemies to some other, and on earth will be your dwelling-place, and your means of livelihood for a life time.''

      God's decree was the result of ADAM'S deeds and actions. He soon noticed that he had done wrong to his ownself. Although, as an apostle, entitled to Divine Inspiration he was innocent, and free from major sin or guilt; he still had to pay that high price as a penalty for his failure to obey the approved rules and regulations of the GARDEN, and the direct commandments given him.

 

WHICH GARDEN WAS IT?   

     Was the garden in which ADAM and EVE dwelt, the promised paradise that is rewarded to the believers?

      Obviously not; because the promised GARDEN OF PARADISE is an eternal ABODE, and one who enters it, is once and for ever, and he will not be given the sack. The garden in which ADAM and EVE dwelt, must have been a beautiful GARDEN of Abundance and affluence, somewhere on the earth. Emam Sadiq (AS) was asked about that Garden and he said: ``It was a garden of those that were on the earth whereupon the sun and the moon shone. Had it been the promised paradise, ADAM would not be discharged of it.''

 

WHY DID GOD CREATE SATAN?

      Some people ask: ``Why did God create Satan to seduce and tempt, and persuade man in doing evil?'' To answer that, we say: Satan was not created a Satan as he is now with the devilish power. For many years he was a companion and associate of the the angels. He misused his position and power, and began to rebel against goodness and truth, and started doing wrong and evil and finally turned to what it is now. On the other hand; SATAN can systematically not harm or seduce a believer unless he is obeyed. As for those who wish to tread the path of truth SATAN is a means of manifesting, and bringing to action the possibilities and hidden power of man; for evolution always establishes through contraction and conflicts!

 

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