How should we understand the verse “If anyone withdraws himself from remembrance of (Allah) Most Gracious (ar-Rahman)...”?

The Details of the Question

- How should we understand verse 36 of the chapter of az-Zukhruf? - How should we understand the verse starting with "If anyone withdraws himself from remembrance of (Allah) Most Gracious..." in the chapter of az-Zukhruf?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

- The translation of the relevant verse is as follows:

“If anyone withdraws himself from remembrance of (Allah) Most Gracious (ar-Rahman), We appoint for him an evil one, to be an intimate companion to him.” (az-Zukhruf, 43/36)

What is meant by the word “dhikr (remembrance)” in the verse is the Quran. A person who indulges in worldly interests like wealth, property, post and rank, and does not seek anything else, he cannot see the Quran or pretends not to see it and becomes blind to the Quran. (Razi, ibid)

“(Allah) Most Gracious! It is He Who has taught the Qur´an.” (ar-Rahman, 55/1-2)

When the first verse is viewed together with the verse above, it is understood better that what is meant by the “dhikr” here is the Quran. For, that the name “Rahman” is mentioned in both verses shows that the “dhikr” here is the Quran.

- As it is known, man’s thought, idea, mind and feelings cannot be occupied with many things at the same time. If he becomes occupied with one thing, he will have to ignore others.

Accordingly, the verse teaches us the following lesson: If a person withdraws himself from our remembrance/Quran, if he virtually pretends to be blind and overlooks it, we will appoint for him a devil that will always keep him busy with bad things and that will prevent him from learning the truth.

- Similarly, there are two centers in man’s heart: quwwa al-malakiyya (angelic power) on the right and lumma ash-shaytaniyya (satanic spot) on the left. Man receives suggestions from those two centers. The angels send inspiration and the devils send delusions and bad suggestions.

If a person tries to seek Allah’s consent in a way that fits a slave, the angels will help him do it.

If he prefers a bad way, he will be exposed to the suggestions of the devil.

Nice thoughts and true ideas open the way for the angels and bad thoughts open the way for the devils.

That fact is indicated in the verse in the question. That is, if a person pretends to be blind to the truths of the Quran and overlooks them, the door to be opened to his world of thought will belumma ash-shaytaniyya. After that, he will have to hear and listen to the satanic messages coming from that door and act accordingly.

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