Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|Hoor al-'Een literal or allegorical?|
|10/05/01 at 18:51:40|
This issue came up recently and in fact there was another episode before this September 11 out here where it did happen. To clear the confusion one brother provided this response with evidence from classical scholars. (Insha'Allah later on I will post another point).
The Hoor al-`Een are mentioned in both the Qur'an and Sunnah LITERALLY.
The Qur'an mentions the Hoor al-`Een, and even implies such details as the beauty of their breasts with the term "kawaa`ib atraaba" [Surat an-Naba'].
Imam at-Tabari mentions Qataada's exegesis of this phrase: "nawaahid
atraaba". The term "nawaahid" is a reference to large protruding breasts. There is no shame in this and to express shame in this is to decry the very Word of Allaah, wa na`uthu bi wajhillaahi-l kareem min thaalak. People who have explained away Hoor al-`Een and such explicit descriptions found in the Qur'an have insulted Allah's favor upon the people of Jannah, and displayed displeasure with this deen.
He further states: "..of equal age. Then is described what is in Jannah:
<<Hadaa'iqa wa a`naaba, wa kawaa`ib atraaba>> in reference to these women. Atraaba: of equal age.." He also states, "<<Kawaa`ib atraaba>> about which is said they are 'nawaahid' of the equal age". Elsewhere, he quotes ibn Abbas (raDee Allaahu `anhu) that they are "an-nisaa' al-mustawiyaat" , with "mustawiy" in reference to their equal age. Elsewhere, he refers to them as "al-lidaat" or "female companions".
[Jaami`u-l Baraan `an Ta'weel Ayy al-Qur'aan, Imaam at-Tabari, vol. 30]
Ibn Katheer says about this: "<<..wa kawaa`ib atraaba>> meaning 'Hooran kawaa`ib'. Ibn `Abbas and Mujaahid have said: <<kawaa`ib>> meaning 'nawaahid', meaning their breasts are voluptuous and do not sag. Verily, they are VIRGINS (Abkaara)."
Imaam al-Qurtubi says: "Kawaa`ib: Plural of 'Kaa`ib' and it is in reference 'nawaahid'...Atraab: Companions of equal age"
[al-Jaami`u li-aHkaam al-Qur'aan, Imaam Qurtubi, vol. 19].
There is absolutely nothing figurative about any of that, and it is actually quite explicit. ath-Tha`aalabi quotes in Fiqh al-Lugha: "thumma Kaa'ib ithaa ka`aba thadyuhaa; thumma naahid ithaa zaad.." This shows that it is even used in Arabic lexical prose in this manner.
The argument that this is a reference to the women's ankle is also incorrect as none of the Salaf referred to this, nor did any of the Mufassireen, or scholars of language. However, scholars of lugha such as Abu Bakr ar-Raazi have said: "al-Ka`bu is the protrusion where the leg and foot meet (ankle). Al-ASma`ee has disagreed saying that it is in the rear of the foot (Achilles heel)." However, ar-Raazi distinguishes this as entirely different deom "Kaa`ib" and "Kawaa`ib" stating that they are voluptuous breasts ("thadyuhaa li-l nuhood"): "..and this is 'kaa`ibu' with a 'fatHa' and the plural
'kawaa`ibu'.." Clarifying the aSl of the word which is in reference to
something even in shape such as a cube he states: "...and Ka`ba which is the Bayt al-Haraam.." [Mukhtaar aS-SiHaaH, Abu Bakr ar-Raazi, Baab al-Kaaf; Abridgement of al-Jawhari's SharH al-Lughah]
In Ibn al-ManTHoor al-Ifreeqi's Lisaan al-`Arab he states the same opinion saying, "nahada thadyuhaa wa jaariyatn ka`aab", thereafter, quoting the phrase from the Qur'an: "wa kawaa`ib atraaba" [Lisaan al-`Arab, ibn al-ManTHoor, vol 1, chapter of "kaaf"]. Ibn al-Atheer and al-aSfahaani are also in accordance with this opinion and it is the overwhelming majority on
every level of Tafseer al-Qur'aan, SharH al-Hadeeth, and SharH al-Lughah.
This addresses the issue of the literal interpretation of Hoor al-`Een
in the Qur'an according to the overwhelming concensus of the scholars of traditional Islam. The Sunnah is even more filled with literal
references to the Hoor al-`Een. That is another subject entirely which I did not tag onto this for the sake of brevity.
|Re: Hoor al-'Een literal or allegorical?|
|10/07/01 at 07:04:10|
Just a question for my understanding. Is it true that Jannah has been described as something which no eyes have seen nor any ears heard of?
Could then ceretain things described about jannah not come under the perview of this ayah?
"3:7 He it is Who hath revealed unto thee (Muhammad) the Scripture wherein are clear revelations--They are the substance of the Book--and others (which are) allegorical. But those in whose hearts is doubt pursue, forsooth, that which is allegorical seeking (to cause) dissension by seeking to explain it. None knoweth its explanation save Allah. And those who are of sound instruction say: We believe therein; the whole is from our Lord; but only men of understanding really heed."
I must admit I dont know things, and thats why the question. I dont know if translation of "Mutashabehat" (the word used in this ayah) is allegorical.
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