About Surah Maarij
Sūrat al-Maʻārij (Arabic: سورة المعارج, “The Ascending Stairways”) is the seventieth sura of the Qur'an with 44 ayat. The Surah takes its name from the word dhil Ma'arij in 3rd ayah. The word appears twice in the Quran. Abdullah Yusuf Ali an Indian Islamic scholar introduces the surah as “This is another Islamic eschatology Surah closely connected in subject matter with the last one. Patience and the mystery of Time will show the ways that climb the Heaven. Sin and Goodness must each eventually come to its own.”
Regarding the period of revelation of this surah, first one notes that this surah is Meccan. This defines the period of revelation of this surah before 622 AD, the year of Hijra (Islam). In his translation of the Qur'an, one of the most widely known and used in the English-speaking world, Abdullah Yusuf Ali says “Chronologically it belongs to the late early middle Makkan period, possibly soon after Surah 69.” Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi in his Tafsir work Tafhim al-Qur'an writes: “The subject matter bears evidence that this Surah too was sent down in conditions closely resembling those under which Surah Al Haaqqah was sent down”. And records a tradition by Musnad Ahmad ibn Hanbal when Umar ibn Khattab told that he heard Muhammad reciting sura Al-Haaqqa Masjid al-Haram. Umar ibn Khattab accepted Islam in 616 AD so the surah Al-Ma'arij thus appears to reveal before 616 AD. Israr Ahmed, a Pakistani Islamic theologian, philosopher, and one of the noted Islamic scholar also holds the opinion that this surah was revealed in the 5th or 6th year of revelation and cites Fakhr al-Din al-Razi and Abdul-Qadir Gilani in reference.Theodor Nöldeke places this chapter immediately after chapters lvi. and liii., probably because of the allusion of the first verse of this chapter to the beginning of chapter lvi. Muir places it in about the same period of time, which would fix the date at about the fifth year of the call of Muhammad to preach.
Asbāb al-nuzūl, an Arabic term meaning "occasions/circumstances of revelation", is a secondary genre of Qur'anic exegesis (tafsir) directed at establishing the context in which specific verses of the Qur'an were revealed. Though of some use in reconstructing the Qur'an's historicity, asbāb is by nature an exegetical rather than a historiographical genre, and as such usually associates the verses it explicates with general situations rather than specific events. Nasa'i and other traditionists have related a tradition from Ibn 'Abbas, and Hakim hold it as authentic, that Nadr bin al-Harith Kaladah had said "O God, if it is really the Truth sent dawn by You, then rain down stones on us from the heavens, or send down any other painful torment on us." (AI-Anfal: 32). The person here meant is generally supposed to have been al Nudár Ibn al Hárith, who said, ‘O God, if what Muhammad preaches be the truth from thee, rain down upon us a shower of stones, or send some dreadful judgment to punish us.’ Others, however, think it was Abú Jahl, who challenged Muhammad to cause a fragment of heaven to fall on them."—Sale, Baidawi.
Abdul-Qadir Gilani an influential Islamic Sufi religious figure, teacher, preacher and writer however holds the opinion that the demand for torment referred in the 1st ayah of this surah was made by Prophet Muhammad himself for the disbelievers due to the increasing Persecution of Muslims by the Meccans. And for example Dr.Israr Ahmed cites the demand of torment by prophet Nūḥ against his people in the next surah which is also the pair of surah Al-Ma'arij. For references Dr.Israr Ahmed cites the works of Fakhr al-Din al-Razi and Abdul-Qadir Gilani.
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