The Characteristics of the Makkee Suwar

Certainly, all praise and thanks is due to Allaah, Creator and Sustainer of all the Worlds. Blessings and peace are upon the most honored of the Prophets and Messengers, and upon his family, and his companions, and those who followed them in goodness until the Day of Recompense.

When we look at the characteristics of those Suwar that are Makkee we have various matters to consider. First and foremost is how we determine what is Makkee and what is Madanee. Second, we must decide what knowledge will constitute proof for the purposes of this determination. Finally, we come to the actual characteristics themselves. It is my hope and desires to address these topics, briefly, for the benefit of myself and the reader and with Allaah lays all hope of success.

First, how do we determine what is Makkee or Madanee? There are three methods generally to approaching this. The first is time-bound; did the revelation occur before or after the Hijrah. This is the most preferred method, as it avoids some other problems of the following two. The second is based on place; did the revelation occur in Makkah or Madeenah. The problem encountered here is that there are times when a verse is revealed after the Hijrah, but in Makkah (i.e. where Allaah says what means, This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favor upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion. 1 which was at the Farewell Hajj). Also, you have verses that were revealed in places other than Makkah or Madeenah. The last is based on the people being addressed; are they Makkan or Madeenan. Again, we have a problem in that there are times when neither group is being addressed (i.e. the People of the Book, etc.). So for our purposes we ll stick with the practice of a large number of scholars and use the time-bound definition for our determination Allaahu A lam. (Qadhi, 1420/1999)


Soorah al-Maa idah 5: 3

Short and succinct. but we may also find some details in the Tafaaseer. " ") a. place. 2 A confirmed authentic report from a Companion is accepted as undisputed fact and cannot be overruled by ijtihaad. a statement of a Companion.e. they were witnesses to the revelation. for Makkee Suwar. it s taken from his book An Introduction to the Sciences of the Qur aan. 99 Soorah at-Tawbah 9: 100 4 Introduction to the Sciences of the Qur aan. 2 Introduction to the Sciences of the Qur aan. 2. where Allaah says what means. proposed by different authors to aid us in identifying those characteristics. wherein they will abide forever. 3) The ijtihaad alluded to above is accomplished by recourse to the characteristics of the Suwar. 6. using strong words and frequent oaths4 1. And the first forerunners [in the faith] among the Muhaajireen and the Ansaar and those who followed them with good conduct Allaah is pleased with them and they are pleased with Him. it s time. Our first list is from Abu Ammaar Yasir Qadhi. In general. etc. That is the great attainment. (i. " " Suwar beginning with disjointed letters. There are two approaches to this topic. and the creation. First.e. This statement will come in an Athar relating to the revelation of that particular Ayah. This being the meat of our topic we ll spend a little more time and energy in delving into it. and therefore it can be rejected. Abu Ammaar Yasir Qadhi. 5. Suwar with a verse of prostration 8. a scholar will take the verses meaning and style into account and try to presume whether the verse is makkee or madanee. Typically we ll find these details in the books of Asbaab un-Nuzool (Reasons of Revelation). ppg. In this method.The next matter we must consider is what should constitute proof of a revelation s place. circumstances. pg. a. 3. Except Al-Baqarah& Aali Imraan 7. 100-102 3 . For the sake of simplicity I ll present various lists of attributes. Tawheed Aqeedah Morality Stories of previous generations Every instance of the oath. and have been praised by Allaah for their righteousness and piety (i. The other method of establishing knowledge of a revelations place is through Ijtihaad (personal reasoning). the Prophet did NOT specify these matters. Ijtihaad conversely is liable to be right or wrong. Suwar with stories of the previous prophets. 4. A Companion s statement being accepted unrestrictedly should be obvious. Except al-Baqarah 9. Aadam. and He has prepared for them gardens beneath which rivers flow. Abu Ammaar Yasir Qadhi.

7. 1. 40 Usool at-Tafseer: The Methodology of Qur aanic Explanation. ppg. Here the benefit is obvious if we consider another statement of the Qur aan. Allaah said what means.e. the verses regarding legal and illegal things were revealed. etc."7 The next most common attribute is Stories from the Previous Nations (i.' people would have said. 2. Tawheed (The Oneness of Allaah) Salaah (Formal Prayer) The Unseen Allaah s Existence Challenges The People of Old Eemaan Short Verses6 When we compare all of these lists we come up with the following points of agreement as to the characteristics of the Makkan Suwar.). albeit a bit shorter. 206-211 7 Al-Bukhaaree 88 Al-Baqarah 2: 66 . 3. 3. And We made it a deterrent punishment for those who were present and those who succeeded [them] and a lesson for those who fear Allaah.e. In closing I want to highlight the importance of this knowledge. Day of Resurrection. but they each have their value as an aid in identifying the Makkee Aayaat/Suwar. Ahmad Von Denfer. pg. 5. after Soorah Qaaf)5 Our final example of a list of characteristics of Makkee Suwar is from Dr. 'We will never give up intoxicants. 8 The other points weren t specific points of agreement. Moral Corruption. This is understandable when we consider the statement of Aa`ishah that. 2. 8. 4. and in it was mentioned Paradise and Hellfire. Prophets/Messengers. is from Ahmad Von Denfer s book. 4. Makkee or Madanee that great insight into the fiqh contained in the Qur aan can be derived. 5 6 Ulum al-Qur an. Ulum al-Qur an. 1.Our next list. " ") Any instance of " " Any verses of prostration Most from the Mufassal (i. "The first thing that was revealed from the Qur'aan was a chapter from Al-Mufassal. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips and his book Usool at-Tafseer. Children of Israa eel. If the first thing to be revealed was: 'Do not drink intoxicants. i. 6. It is through knowing these matters. Form of Address ( O Mankind or O People generally Makke) Theme (Tawheed.e. Shirk. 5. When the people embraced Islam. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips. 6. First and foremost the emphasis on Tawheed is a common attribute of these Suwar. Stories of the Prophets) Disjointed letters (Muqatta aat or Huroof Tahajji. Dr.

I pray that this short treatise has in some way helped to elucidate the matter of the attributes of Makkee Aayaat/Suwar. etc. Only by putting first things first can we begin to approach the success of the Prophet s (Allaah s blessings and peace be upon him) generation. Lastly.These matters directly relate to Naasikh wa-Mansookh (Abrogator and Abrogated). O Allaah. . if we reflect back on the statement of Aa`ishah. They also relate to the graduality of some rules and how they were revealed. I seek Your forgiveness and turn in repentance to You. and to You be Praise. it is very informative as to the most effective approach in Da wah and personality development. Aameen. Glory is to You. I bear witness that nothing deserves to be worshipped except You.

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