Quran Notes Surah Al Falaq
Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) was commanded to tell the people: “I seek refuge with the Lord of the dawn, from the evil of everything that He has created, and from the evil of the darkness of night and from the evil of magicians, men and women, and from the evil of the envious”, and to tell them: “I seek refuge with the Lord of mankind, the King of mankind, and the Deity of mankind, from the evil of the whisperer, who returns over and over again, who whispers (evil) into the hearts of men, whether he be from among the jinn or men.” This is similar to what the Prophet Moses had been told to say when Pharaoh had expressed his design before his full court to kill him: “I have taken refuge with my Lord and your Lord against every arrogant person who does not believe in the Day of Reckoning.” (Al-Mu’min: 27). And: “I have taken refuge with my Lord and your Lord lest you should assail me.” (Ad- Dukhan;20).
On both occasions these illustrious Prophets of Allah were confronted with well-equipped, resourceful and powerful enemies. On both occasions they stood firm on their message of Truth against their strong opponents, whereas they had no material power on the strength of which they could fight them, and on both occasions they utterly disregarded the threats and dangerous plans and hostile devices of the enemy, saying: “We have taken refuge with the Lord of the universe against you.” Obviously, such firmness and steadfastness can be shown only by the person who has the conviction that the power of His Lord is the supreme power, that all powers of the world are insignificant against Him, and that no one can harm the one who has taken His refuge. Only such a one can say: “I will not give up preaching the Word of Truth. I care the least for what you may say or do, for I have taken refuge with my Lord and your Lord and Lord of all universe.”
Seeking refuge implies feeling fear of something and seeking protection of another, or taking cover of it, or clinging to it, or going under its shelter for safety. The seeker after refuge in any case is the person, who feels that he cannot by himself resist and fight the thing that he fears, but stands in need of refuge with another for protection.
Quran and the Hadith mention has been made of seeking refuge with Allah, it implies this particular kind of refuge, and it is a necessary corollary of the doctrine of Tauhid that this kind of refuge should be sought from no one but Allah. The polytheists sought this kind of protection, and seek even today, from other beings than Allah, e.g. the jinn, or gods and goddesses. The materialists also turn for this to material means and resources, for they do not believe in any supernatural power. But the believer only turns to Allah and seeks refuge only with Him, against all such calamities and misfortunes to ward off which he feels he has no power.
For example, about the polytheists it has been said in the Quran: And that from among men some people used to seek refuge with some people from among the jinn (Surah Al-Jinn, Ayat 16).
And explaining it in (E.N. 7 of Surah Al-Jinn )we have cited Abdullah bin Abbas’s tradition that when the polytheistic Arabs had to pass a night in an uninhabited valley, they would call out, saying: We seek refuge of the lord of this valley (i.e. of the jinn who is ruler and master of this valley). Contrary to this, about Pharaoh it has been said: When he witnessed the great signs presented by the Prophet Moses (peace be upon him), he showed arrogance on account of his might. (Surah Adh- Dhariyat, Ayat 39).
As for the attitude and conduct of the God-worshippers the Quran says that they seek Allah’s refuge for protection against the evil of everything that they fear, whether it is material or moral or spiritual. Thus, about Mary it has been said that when God’s angel appeared before her suddenly in human guise (when she did not know that he was an angel), she cried out: I seek the merciful God’s refuge from you, if you are a pious man. (Surah Maryam, Ayat 18).
When the Prophet Noah (peace be upon him) made an improper petition to Allah, and was rebuked by Allah in response, he immediately submitted: My Lord, I seek Your protection lest I should ask of You anything of which I have no knowledge. (Surah Hud, Ayat 47) When the Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) commanded the children of Israel to sacrifice a cow, and they said that perhaps he was having a jest with them, he replied: I crave Allah’s protection from behaving like ignorant people. (Surah Al-Baqarah, Ayat 67).
The same is the case with all the acts of seeking refuge which have been reported in respect of the Prophet (peace be upon him) in the books of Hadith. For instance, consider the following prayers that the Prophet (peace be upon him) made:
Aishah has reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to pray, saying: O God, I seek Your refuge from the evil of the works which I did and from the evil of the works which I did not do. (i.e. if I have done a wrong, I seek refuge from its evil results, and if I have not done a work which I should have done, I seek refuge from the loss that I have incurred, or from that I should do what I should not do). (Muslim).
Ibn Umar has reported that one of the supplications of the Prophet (peace be upon him) was to the effect: O God, I seek Your refuge from being deprived of a blessing that You have bestowed on me and from being deprived of the well-being that You have granted me and I seek refuge lest Your wrath should descend on me suddenly, and I seek refuge from every kind of Your displeasure. (Muslim).
Zaid bin Arqam has reported that the Messenger (peace be upon him) of Allah used to pray: O God, I seek Your refuge from the knowledge which is not beneficial, from the heart which does not fear You, from the soul which is never satisfied, and from the prayer which is not answered. (Muslim).
Abu Hurairah has reported that the Messenger (peace be upon him) used to pray: O God, I seek Your refuge from hunger, for it is a most evil thing with which one may have to pass a night, and I seek Your refuge from dishonesty, for it is sheer evil-mindedness. (Abu Daud).
Anas has reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to pray: O God, I seek Your refuge from leprosy and madness and all evil diseases. (Abu Daud).
Aishah has reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to pray in these words: O God, I seek Your refuge from the mischief of the fire and from the evil of affluence and poverty. (Tirmidhi, Abu Daud).
Shakal bin Humaid requested the Prophet (peace be upon him) to teach him some prayer. He told him to say: O God, I seek Your refuge from the evil of my hearing, from the evil of my sight, from the evil of my tongue, from the evil of my heart, and from the evil of my lust, (Tirmidhi, Abu Daud).
Atlas bin Malik has reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to say: O God, I seek Your refuge from helplessness, indolence, cowardice, old age and stinginess, and I seek Your refuge from the torment of the grave and from the mischief of life and death, (and according to a tradition in Muslim also) from the burden of debt and that the people should overpower me. (Bukhari, Muslim).
Khawla bint Hukaym Sulamiyyah says that she heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) as saying that the one who halts at a new stage (during the journey) and says: I seek refuge in the blameless words of Allah from the evil of the creatures, will not be caused any harm until he departs from that stage. (Muslim).