English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 6: Al-Anam — The Cattle (Revealed at Makkah: 20 sections, 165 verses)

Section 4 (Verses 6:31–6:41): Rejection of the Truth


قَدۡ خَسِرَ الَّذِیۡنَ کَذَّبُوۡا بِلِقَآءِ اللّٰہِ ؕ حَتّٰۤی اِذَا جَآءَتۡہُمُ السَّاعَۃُ بَغۡتَۃً قَالُوۡا یٰحَسۡرَتَنَا عَلٰی مَا فَرَّطۡنَا فِیۡہَا ۙ وَ ہُمۡ یَحۡمِلُوۡنَ اَوۡزَارَہُمۡ عَلٰی ظُہُوۡرِہِمۡ ؕ اَلَا سَآءَ مَا یَزِرُوۡنَ ﴿۳۱﴾

6:31 They are losers indeed who reject the meeting with Allah, until when the hour comes upon them suddenly,1 they will say: O our grief for our neglecting it! And they bear their burdens on their backs. Now surely evil is what they bear!

وَ مَا الۡحَیٰوۃُ الدُّنۡیَاۤ اِلَّا لَعِبٌ وَّ لَہۡوٌ ؕ وَ لَلدَّارُ الۡاٰخِرَۃُ خَیۡرٌ لِّلَّذِیۡنَ یَتَّقُوۡنَ ؕ اَفَلَا تَعۡقِلُوۡنَ ﴿۳۲﴾

6:32 And this world’s life is but an idle sport and play. And certainly the abode of the Hereafter is better for those who keep their duty. Do you not then understand?

قَدۡ نَعۡلَمُ اِنَّہٗ لَیَحۡزُنُکَ الَّذِیۡ یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ فَاِنَّہُمۡ لَا یُکَذِّبُوۡنَکَ وَ لٰکِنَّ الظّٰلِمِیۡنَ بِاٰیٰتِ اللّٰہِ یَجۡحَدُوۡنَ ﴿۳۳﴾

6:33 We know indeed that what they say grieves you, for surely they do not call you a liar, but the wrongdoers deny the messages of Allah.2

وَ لَقَدۡ کُذِّبَتۡ رُسُلٌ مِّنۡ قَبۡلِکَ فَصَبَرُوۡا عَلٰی مَا کُذِّبُوۡا وَ اُوۡذُوۡا حَتّٰۤی اَتٰہُمۡ نَصۡرُنَا ۚ وَ لَا مُبَدِّلَ لِکَلِمٰتِ اللّٰہِ ۚ وَ لَقَدۡ جَآءَکَ مِنۡ نَّبَاِی الۡمُرۡسَلِیۡنَ ﴿۳۴﴾

6:34 And messengers indeed were rejected before you, but they were patient when rejected and persecuted, until Our help came to them. And there is none to change the words of Allah.3 And there has already come to you some information about the messengers.

وَ اِنۡ کَانَ کَبُرَ عَلَیۡکَ اِعۡرَاضُہُمۡ فَاِنِ اسۡتَطَعۡتَ اَنۡ تَبۡتَغِیَ نَفَقًا فِی الۡاَرۡضِ اَوۡ سُلَّمًا فِی السَّمَآءِ فَتَاۡتِیَہُمۡ بِاٰیَۃٍ ؕ وَ لَوۡ شَآءَ اللّٰہُ لَجَمَعَہُمۡ عَلَی الۡہُدٰی فَلَا تَکُوۡنَنَّ مِنَ الۡجٰہِلِیۡنَ ﴿۳۵﴾

6:35 And if their turning away is hard on you, then, if you can, seek an opening into the earth or a ladder to heaven, to bring them a sign!4 And if Allah pleased, He would certainly have gathered them all to guidance, so do not be from among the ignorant.

اِنَّمَا یَسۡتَجِیۡبُ الَّذِیۡنَ یَسۡمَعُوۡنَ ؕؔ وَ الۡمَوۡتٰی یَبۡعَثُہُمُ اللّٰہُ ثُمَّ اِلَیۡہِ یُرۡجَعُوۡنَ ﴿ ۳۶﴾؃

6:36 Only those accept who listen. And (as for) the dead, Allah will raise them, then to Him they will be returned.5

وَ قَالُوۡا لَوۡ لَا نُزِّلَ عَلَیۡہِ اٰیَۃٌ مِّنۡ رَّبِّہٖ ؕ قُلۡ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ قَادِرٌ عَلٰۤی اَنۡ یُّنَزِّلَ اٰیَۃً وَّ لٰکِنَّ اَکۡثَرَ ہُمۡ لَا یَعۡلَمُوۡنَ ﴿۳۷﴾

6:37 And they say: Why has not a sign been sent down to him from his Lord? Say: Surely Allah is Able to send down a sign, but most of them do not know.6

وَ مَا مِنۡ دَآبَّۃٍ فِی الۡاَرۡضِ وَ لَا طٰٓئِرٍ یَّطِیۡرُ بِجَنَاحَیۡہِ اِلَّاۤ اُمَمٌ اَمۡثَالُکُمۡ ؕ مَا فَرَّطۡنَا فِی الۡکِتٰبِ مِنۡ شَیۡءٍ ثُمَّ اِلٰی رَبِّہِمۡ یُحۡشَرُوۡنَ ﴿۳۸﴾

6:38 And there is no animal in the earth, nor a bird that flies on its two wings, but (they are) communities like yourselves. We have not neglected anything in the Book. Then to their Lord will they be gathered.7

وَ الَّذِیۡنَ کَذَّبُوۡا بِاٰیٰتِنَا صُمٌّ وَّ بُکۡمٌ فِی الظُّلُمٰتِ ؕ مَنۡ یَّشَاِ اللّٰہُ یُضۡلِلۡہُ ؕ وَ مَنۡ یَّشَاۡ یَجۡعَلۡہُ عَلٰی صِرَاطٍ مُّسۡتَقِیۡمٍ ﴿۳۹﴾

6:39 And those who reject Our messages are deaf and dumb, in darkness. Whom Allah pleases He leaves in error. And whom He pleases He places on the right way.

قُلۡ اَرَءَیۡتَکُمۡ اِنۡ اَتٰىکُمۡ عَذَابُ اللّٰہِ اَوۡ اَتَتۡکُمُ السَّاعَۃُ اَغَیۡرَ اللّٰہِ تَدۡعُوۡنَ ۚ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ صٰدِقِیۡنَ ﴿۴۰﴾

6:40 Say: See, if the punishment of Allah overtake you or the hour come upon you, will you call on others than Allah, if you are truthful?

بَلۡ اِیَّاہُ تَدۡعُوۡنَ فَیَکۡشِفُ مَا تَدۡعُوۡنَ اِلَیۡہِ اِنۡ شَآءَ وَ تَنۡسَوۡنَ مَا تُشۡرِکُوۡنَ ﴿٪۴۱﴾

6:41 No, Him you call upon, so He removes that for which you pray, if He pleases, and you forget what you set up as partners (with Him).


  1. By the hour is meant their doom, as well as the hour of the final judg­ment.
  2. The Holy Prophet was known among them as al-Amīn, i.e., the Faithful or the Truthful one. His worst enemies at the height of their enmity admitted that he had never told a lie. It was after he received the Divine revelation that he was called a liar, and hence it was really a denial of the Divine revelation, not a denial as to the Prophet’s truthfulness.
  3. The context shows that by the words of Allah here are meant the prophecies foretelling the triumph of Truth and the overthrow of all opposition.
  4. By sign is meant a sign that should bring all to guidance. Their doom was pronounced, and that word must be fulfilled, as affirmed in the previous verse; but the demand of the people to be overawed into an immediate submission to the Prophet by a sign was not in accordance with the Divine Law.
  5. Those addressed by the Holy Prophet are here divided into two classes: (1) those who listen: they accept him and become believers; (2) those who are spiritually dead and pay no heed to his warning. Even the latter are not to be despaired of, for Allah will raise them too to spiritual life. Their being returned to Allah stands here for their ultimate acceptance of the Truth.
  6. Allah did send the very sign demanded, as we find the Arabs sub­mitting to the Holy Prophet almost in a body after the conquest of Makkah.
  7. Other creatures are all provided for by Allah as human beings are, so far as physical needs are concerned. But man’s nature aspires to something higher, and it is to satisfy that spiritual craving that prophets are sent. This verse, more­over, points, as it were, to two classes of people — those who, like beasts, are wholly bent on earth and cannot rise, and those who rise like birds, soaring upward to the higher spiritual regions. The concluding words of the verse — then to their Lord will they be gathered — are in reference to mankind and, as com­pared with other animals, point to the Higher life, the life eternal in God. There is no mention here or anywhere else in the Quran of the lower animals being raised to a new life for Judgment.