ON THE LAST SECTION QUR`AN
Chapter 111: Surat Al-Lahab
the name of Allah,
the Beneficent, the Merciful
May the two hands of Abu
Lahab perish, and may he perish!
Tabba means 'to
be lost, to lose', and 'to perish, or be destroyed'. Abu Lahab was
an uncle of the Prophet. He was a vibrant, fiery being, handsome and
dangerous, like a tiger. He upheld the old traditions, and defended
them in a dogmatic, fanatical way. Whatever his 'hands' put forth,
whatever his actions were, he was to be at a loss.
His wealth and what he
gains will be of no use!
Whatever he earned,
whatever he possessed of power, was to be of no avail.
He will be plunged into
He was destined for the
ultimate Fire, just as in this life he burned with his agitation,
his fiery hatred and his disappointments and frustrations.
And his wife, the
carrier of fire-wood.
Abu Lahab's wife was the
sister of Abu Sufyān. Hatab means 'firewood',
the implication being, in the phrase
that she incited people against each other by carrying tales back
and forth to fuel and fan gossip and to create agitation. She used
to throw small thorny bushes along the path which the Prophet used
to take to the Ka'bah, so that in the dark of the early morning he
would step on them. What it implies is that her inner discontent
showed itself in whatever she did outwardly, and her inner thorns
were carried outwardly on her back.
Upon her neck is a
halter of strong twisted palm-fiber!
Jīd describes the
part of the neck where the necklace usually rests. Masad
normally means a twisted palm frond. This means that what she
dragged about with her – what was around her neck – was a heavily
twisted chain of her own making.
Although this chapter
historically refers to an uncle of the Prophet and his partner in
persecution, his wife, wherever and whenever truth appears, the
denial and opposition of an Abū Lahab is always close at hand.
End of the Surah