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The Koran Interpreted Translation by A.J. Arberry

76 MAN (1 – 22)

The Qurʾan Translation by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem

76. Mana See footnote g, Sura 89. (1 – 21)

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate

Has there come on man a while of time when he was a thing unremembered?

We created man of a sperm-drop, a mingling, trying him; and We made him hearing, seeing. Surely We guided him upon the way whether he be thankful or unthankful. Surely We have prepared for the unbelievers chains, fetters, and a Blaze. 5Surely the pious shall drink of a cup whose mixture is camphor, a fountain whereat drink the servants of God, making it to gush forth plenteously. They fulfil their vows, and fear a day whose evil is upon the wing; they give food, for the love of Him, to the needy, the orphan, the captive: ‘We feed you only for the Face of God; we desire no recompense from you, no thankfulness; 10for we fear from our Lord a frowning day, inauspicious.’ So God has guarded them from the evil of that day, and has procured them radiancy and gladness, and recompensed them for their patience with a Garden, and silk; therein they shall recline upon couches, therein they shall see neither sun nor bitter cold; near them shall be its shades, and its clusters hung meekly down, 15and there shall be passed around them vessels of silver, and goblets of crystal, crystal of silver that they have measured very exactly. And therein they shall be given to drink a cup whose mixture is ginger, therein a fountain whose name is called Salsabil. Immortal youths shall go about them; 20when thou seest them, thou supposest them scattered pearls, when thou seest them then thou seest bliss and a great kingdom. Upon them shall be green garments of silk and brocade; they are adorned with bracelets of silver, and their Lord shall give them to drink a pure draught. ‘Behold, this is a recompense for you, and your striving is thanked.’

A Medinan sura that speaks of how man is tested (verses 2–3) and what the results will be for the evildoers (verse 4) and for the righteous (verses 5–22). The Prophet is urged to persevere m his devotion and to bear with patience (verses 23–6).

In the name of God, the Lord of Mercy, the Giver of Mercy

1Was there not a period of time when man was nothing to speak of?b Literally ‘Has there not come over man a period of time when he was not mentioned?’ This refers to the time before a person is born, the point being that he was nothing, then God created him, just as He will bring him to life again for Judgement.

2We created man from a drop of mingled fluid to put him to the test; We gave him hearing and sight; 3We guided him to the right path, whether he was grateful or not.

4We have prepared chains, iron collars, and blazing Fire for the disbelievers, but 5the righteous will have a drink mixed with kafur,c A fragrant herb. 6a spring for God's servants, which flows abundantly at their wish. 7They fulfil their vows; they fear a day of widespread woes; 8they give food to the poor, the orphan, and the captive, though they love it themselves, 9saying, ‘We feed you for the sake of God alone: We seek neither recompense nor thanks from you. 10We fear the Day of our Lord—a woefully grim Day.’ 11So God will save them from the woes of that Day, give them radiance and gladness, 12and reward them, for their steadfastness, with a Garden and silken robes. 13They will sit on couches, feeling neither scorching heat nor biting cold, 14with shady [branches] spread above them and clusters of fruit hanging close at hand. 15They will be served with silver plates 16and gleaming silver goblets according to their fancy, 17and they will be given a drink infused with ginger 18from a spring called Salsabil. 19Everlasting youths will attend them—if you could see them, you would think they were scattered pearls—20and if you were to look around, you would see bliss and great wealth: 21they will wear garments of green silk and brocade; they will be adorned with silver bracelets; their Lord will give them a pure drink.

Notes:

a See footnote g, Sura 89.

b Literally ‘Has there not come over man a period of time when he was not mentioned?’ This refers to the time before a person is born, the point being that he was nothing, then God created him, just as He will bring him to life again for Judgement.

c A fragrant herb.

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