How should we understand the phrase "the Mother of Cities and all around her" mentioned in verse 92 of the chapter of al-Anam?
Submitted by on Wed, 26/10/2016 - 00:41
Dear Brother / Sister,
What is meant by the mother of cities is Makkah. It is ordered in the verse to convey the message of Islam to all people beginning from Makkah.
And this is a Book which We have sent down, bringing blessings.Its prosperity will encompass the world. It confirms (the revelations) which came before it and it distinguished the good from the bad. The light and guidance in it will increase, be strengthened and develop by being confirmed by it. We sent it down to do this (to remind the realms, for abundance and confirmation) so that you may warn the Mother of Cities and all around her. Those who believe in the Hereafter believe in this (Book), and they are constant in guarding their prayers. Ummul-Qura, which means the mother/center of all cities, is one of the names of Makkah; it means it is the center of the world and the qiblah of all of the creatures.
It is known that warning is for the people of Makkah, not Makkah itself; so it means "the people of Ummul-Qura" by the use of metonym. The phrase(wa man hawlaha: all around her) is an indication of it. It is doubtless that the reason why the phrase "Ummul-Qura" is used instead of "Makkah" is to make people think that Makkah is the absolute center of all of the cities in the world. Therefore, the phrase (wa man hawlaha) means all of the cities around the world with the relation of the center with its periphery. However, if "Ummul-Qura" is regarded as "Makkah" without taking into consideration of the meaning of being the center, wa man hawlaha is regarded as the surroundings of Makkah and hence the Arabian Peninsula.
According to this possibility, the wisdom behind the Quran being sent down would be thought of as warning only the people of Makkah and the Arabian Peninsula; therefore, using the conjunction "and", the Quran says, "and so that you may warn the Mother of Cities and all around her", not "so that you may warn Makkah and all around her" and not "so that you may warn the Mother of Cities and all around her", stating that the purpose of the Quran and Hz. Muhammad being sent was not warning the nation of Arabs only but with the meaning of "the Quran is only a warning for the realms" the verse before it and that the vastness of its scope should not be forgotten. And especially the scope of the following verse is stated:
"O Muhammad! We have not sent thee but as a (Messenger) to men, giving them Glad tidings, and warning them (against sin)." (Saba', 34/28)
However, it is strange that, after all these explanations, a group of Jews tried to use the phrase "and so that you may warn the Mother of Cities and all around her " in the verse as evidence that Hz. Muhammad (pbuh) was a prophet sent only to Arabs; that is they admitted his prophethood but claimed that he was a prophet sent to Arabs, not to all nations. They are known as "Isawiyyah sect"; we see that some so-called intellectual Europeans have tried to spread this Jewish sect and its policy among non-Arab Muslims today. The prophethood of Hz Muhammad (pbuh) is determined and confirmed by the verse by stating that denying prophethood, which is a duty given to human beings, is temerity and ingratitude emerging from not appreciating Allah as it is required and denying the Quran and the prophethood of Hz. Muhammad (pbuh) after accepting any prophet and any book that is sent down though the Quran approves and confirms all the prophets and the books and is clearer and more blessed than them is a clear contradiction.
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