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“Light Upon Light”

19 June 2013 2,775 views No Comment

By Saima Salahuddin             

March 2013

Confidential is definitely an amazing, beneficial class that I would recommend for everyone. We spent an entire weekend studying the book of Allah, learning its gems and practicality. It was amazing to see how much depth and knowledge can be learned from Surat’l-Nur. The Surah gives major rulings as well as minor but important rulings. It was really interesting to see some of the transitions in the Surah and the different themes it touches upon. It is a surah packed with a lot of fiqh rulings that can applied directly to our lives.sun

This surah had so many great lessons and laws that really humble you and inspire you. One of my favorite ayahs in this surah was verse 35:

“Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth. The example of His light is like a niche within which is a lamp, the lamp is within glass, the glass as if it were a pearly [white] star lit from [the oil of] a blessed olive tree, neither of the east nor of the west, whose oil would almost glow even if untouched by fire. Light upon light. Allah guides to His light whom He wills. And Allah presents examples for the people, and Allah is Knowing of all things.” (Quran, 24:35)

This is such a beautiful ayah speaking about Allah guidance; Allah gives us an example or parable of His guidance. Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) said that Allah guides the one in the heavens and earth. In the first ayah, it can also mean Allah illuminates everything in the heavens and earth.  In class, we discussed four types of guidance. The first one was general guidance which all living things operate. The second type of guidance is the specific message that comes from prophets, messengers, and holy books. The third type of guidance is a gift from Allah when He opens someone’s heart to Islam. The fourth type of guidance is when Allah guides people to their homes in Jannah. We’ll know our houses in Jannah better than we knew our houses in dunya. A non-Muslim cannot say they weren’t given guidance because the Quran is available and people are constantly spreading the deen but they didn’t listen.

This ayah presents such a beautiful comparison for us. Ubay bin Ka’b said, “the lamp is the light and this refers to the Quran and the faith that is in his heart” so the niche is the heart of the believer and the lamp is revelation. “The lamp is in a glass, the glass as it were a brilliant star” meaning that the glass is a shining, bright, clear glass. The oil is from a blessed tree, “neither from the east or the west” which means that it is in a central position; the sun hits it at all times without anything covering it. And this oil is pure; even without light, it glows and shines by itself. When combined they are like the light of Quran and Light of eman, and neither can shine without the other. “Light upon light” SubhanAllah. This ayah is such a beautiful parable of guidance.

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