Weekend Reads: The Tounge & The Poets

[1] The Tounge

Allah says in the begining of Surah al-Mu’minun, “Indeed successful are the Believers, those who in their prayer have Khushoo’ (fear of Allah) and those who refrain from vain talk.” [Surah Mu’minun : 1-3]

Here Allah mentions that refraining from vain talk is a sign of the successful believers. Allah also mentions refraining from vain talk after he mentions al-Khushoo’. This is because too much talk makes the heart hard. It is not possible to reach the level of Khushoo’ (fear of Allah) unless one refrains from vain talk.

Further reading: Finding Focus in Prayer


[2] The Poets

I copied some part from the transcribed lecture by Shaykh Hamza Yusuf:


“So this..what happened to poetry?

Well, I’ll tell you what happened to poetry. The Qur’an has a chapter called The Poets. Al Shu’ara. And there’s no chapter in The Qur’an that isn’t named after something that is great.

You will not find any chapter in The Qur’an that is not named after something that has immense import. Whether it’s The Spider, whether it’s The Cow, whether it’s The Bee, whether it’s The Morning Sunlight, whether it’s The Moon, whether it’s The Moving Sand-dunes, whether it’s Mutual Consultation, every word that is used as a title for one of the chapters of The Qur’an has immense import in the lives of human beings.

And one of them is The Poets. But The Qur’an divides the poets into two types of people – the poets who sell the gift that they have been given for the highest bidder.

And this was the jahili poet, he was called the sha-il. And what he would do is, if you paid him enough money, he would say whatever you wanted to say with him, and when I mentioned that to my father, about that, in The Qur’an, he said, 

It reminds me of Simonides that Aristotle mentioned”.

He was a poet, a Greek poet, that used to sell his ability to do verse to the highest bidder. And somebody once came to him and asked him to write a poem about a donkey that he had particular love for. And it bothered Simonides that he would have to write a poem about a donkey.

But because the man was paying him enough money, he wrote the poem and Socrates quoted a couple of lines from it,

“How beautiful thou art, thou storm-footed ass”.


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