IN THE NAME OF ALLAH, THE COMPASSIONATE, THE MERCIFUL.
This is an English translation of the twentieth and thirtieth sections of the late ayatullah Salehghaffari’s free translation/interpretation of the Koranic verses into the Persian language. It has to be pointed out that it is by no means possible to convey the miraculous majesty, beauty, glamour and magnificence of Koran and its multilayer meanings through translation.
The author, a well versed scholar in Islamic studies, was born in 1926 in one of the villages of Sabzevar, province of Khorasan. He initially started his carries as a teacher, but, after the demise of his brother who was an ayatollah (Shi’ite clergymen who are authorized to issue edicts (fatwa), he decided to follow his late brother’s footsteps. He entered a seminary in the holy city of Mashhad, and once he had learned the best of what was being offered there, he immigrated to the holy city of Najaf in Iraque that was an important center for the higher levels of religious education. Through hard work and by the blessings of Allah, he managed to earn several licenses from several grand masters who confirmed him as an ayatollah. Felling that his fellow countrymen needed him, he returned to Iran and while doing his job as a clergy man in Tehran where he found loyal disciples, he started several development projects in his birth place where, while preaching Islam, he would work like a manual laborer himself together with the villagers and that led to the implementation of all of them at a minimum cost and without having to apply to the Shah’s regime for the unlikely help and assistance.
His thoughts and teachings are solely based on Koran, the words of the prophet (Salawatullah wa salamuhu alaihi- God’s blessings and greetings be to him) and the infallible household of the prophet who were the prophet’s true successors.
In this way, he would also heavily rely on the supplications and the most well known texts of pilgrimage used for paying tribute to the infallible household of the prophet and his true successors (the twelve Imams) authored by themselves that the Shi’ites are recommended to read or chant in person or in groups in their gatherings. He believed that such texts contained valuable pieces of knowledge on the Islamic theology.
He led a Spartan life, was a staunch supporter of the Islamic revolution and its leadership, went to the fronts as a preacher, used to encourage everybody to participate in the war and lost his beloved son in the fronts. He died in his ancestral village where he was rendering his usual services in 2008.
To be more precise, we hereby quote part of his comments on the deeper layer interpretation of Koranic terms:
AA- “AFVE” (forgiveness) and “ISSYAN” (transgression) are related to the (intentional) sins of the guilty; such sins bring forth darkness of the heart and God’s forgiveness in this case means removing that darkness from one’s heart.
BB_ “ZANB” (Offence)” and “GHUFRAN” (disregarding? pardon?) are related to the offences of those who have failed to heed God’s recommendations due to certain disabilities and spiritual defects. In this case, God grants “GHUFRAN” which means giving the guilty the talent, power, and knowledge to avoid them. Such offences are like children’s offences that do not lead to heart darkness, and require the offender to ask for wisdom and talent from God by repeating the standard phrases recommended for begging pardon.
CC- Everywhere in the Islamic tradition the Koranic words of “SA’AH” (the time, the moment} and “GHIYAMAH” (the resurrection day) have been interpreted to mean Imam Mahdi’s (PBUH) resurgence and all the words referring to the “God’s promise” and “ the one promised to all nations” mean him.
DD-Words like “seas” have been interpreted to mean scientists and “mountains” to religious and non religious superpowers. Likewise “land” and “sea” mean the ordinary uneducated man and the educated man respectively. “Sun” means the God’s messenger and his successors and “stars” mean the scientists. “Piercing meteor” and “stoning away of the intruders” are interpreted as the activities of the stars of guidance against the satans; The hypocrites pick up the religious tenets and teachings and abuse them for their devilish goals but the scientists shoot them away by their teachings. Night and day mean the era of the non observable life of Imam Mahdi (PBUH), and the era of his appearance and rule respectively.
EE-The intersected letters in Koran (some surahs begin with alphabetical letters put together without any obvious meaning, and the readers of Koran read them letter by letter and not combined) in Koran represent the basics of creation, events, and training. The saying from the Imam that Allah has created the world from consonant letters -as narrated in the book “Osooli Kafi”, refers to such an interpretation.
FF- The objects to which Allah swears in Koran mostly represents persons; as such the Tree of Tuba means God’s disciples and the Tree of Zakkum represents Allah’s enemies.
GG-The Gardens of Eden underneath which rivers flow means the people of paradise’s spiritual prowess, since they are equipped with God’s will that once He utters: “Be thou!” It comes into existence. (The saying by the Imam narrating Allah as declaring: “My creatures are eternally approaching me by their voluntary prayers is a testament to this).
HH-The ZAKKUM fruit of hell and the snakes and scorpions lurking in it are in fact the people dwelling there; since they are constantly stinging one another. Which beast has a bitterer sting than that of man?
II-Earth and heaven will be under the reigns of the people of paradise that wherever they go, turn it into a rose garden. First they are bestowed with the cosmos of divine knowledge and power and then they take the realm of power over millions of back warded human beings who have to be trained.
JJ-The torments imposed over the believers in this world by the disbelievers will be returned to them in kind by the believers. Paradise and hell are the ultimate outcomes of the people’s acts and not rewards and punishments. They are the unavoidable outcome of one’s deeds.
Accordingly he infers:
1-The third world war in which nuclear devices will be vastly applied is inevitable. In this war, more than two thirds of the world populace will be killed or will die and the rest will live in such a despicable condition that they will sincerely beg for the divine salvation. The rise of Imam Mahdi [the 12th Imam and successor of prophet Muhammad (SAWA) who is alive and lives incognito amongst the people] and the joining him of all the past prophets will lead to the willful embracing of his rule by all of the righteous people instantly. The wrong doers will be helpless and will be instantly subdued. All wars will end.
2-The world will turn into a paradise for the righteous that will enjoy his miraculous powers while at the same time the wrong doers who have had a share in igniting the fires of wars will become totally powerless and while being deprived of all of the benefits of the nature, the heat of the wars they have ignited will be concentrated in their bodies and they will suffer the same torments that they have inflicted on humanity.
3-Imam Mahdi (PBUH), enjoying the blessings of Allah and having been bestowed the divine power and authority, will order the dead to rise and share the same fate of their likes.
4-The world will turn into a huge university where everybody’s task will be to shed impurities, atone for mistakes, purify himself, attain the divine knowledge, and earn the highest possible qualifications.
5-Amongst the people of hell, those who have any possibilities for salvation will be relieved from their torments once they have been purified and will join the righteous. Only a small fraction of them who are the most stubborn will dwell in their inferno forever.
6-The author regards Allah the creator of the universe and not as some philosophers and almost all of the mystics believe, the source and the fountain of existence. The creatures do not return- literally “into” Allah, but, rather, they elevate themselves towards Him in order to be able to reflect Him in their manners, deeds, knowledge, etc.
7-On the spirit and soul, the author regards the spirit, light, and life as one omnipresent creation of Allah that once is infused into the dark matter (IN Koran Allah declares Himself as the creator of darkness and light i.e. the dark matter and light), life, light and movement appear. Hence, the spirit is not peculiar to any single living creature; what is peculiar to every single person is the soul that bears one’s personal traits and experiences and forms the personality. It is the soul that remains dormant after one’s death. Everybody is composed of spirit, soul and body and cannot be regarded alive without each of them. Based on this argument, he disputes the existence of the angels, the Satan, the ghosts and the jinni as is perceived by the common man. He regards the angels as articles and tools in God’s hands that are instantly created for certain missions.
To him, Satan has two aspects: the internal Satan; that is one’s personal desires that tempt him to follow evil, and the external satans; that is the mischievous people who tend to tempt, deceive and mislead the others. The Jinni are the marginalized and secluded people who are oblivious to the general populace and lead a seclude life.
9-It is noteworthy that the author disagrees with the mainstream school that maintains: Imam Mahdi (PBUH) will also be martyred after a few years of ruling and then his previous Imams will take his position one by one, and then everybody, including the angels and Satan will die, and finally the big siren will be blown and all the dead will go back to life and will be tried to suffer due to the sins they have committed and the large garden of paradise and the great crater of hell will be their abode in accordance with their deeds. They also maintain that after the rise of Imam Mahdi (PBUH), bloody wars between the armies of good and evil will ensue and the final triumph will be that of the good.
AA: The Shi’ism school of thought maintains that when prophet Muhammad [SALAWATULLAH ALEIHI WA ALIH(SAWA)= ALLAH’S GREETINGS TO HIM AND HIS DESCENDENTS] in his last pilgrimage to Mecca, in a place called Ghadir, asked all the pilgrims who were ahead of him to return and all those who were behind to join him, and then, when about 120,000 pilgrims had gathered together, made a sermon during which he raised the hands of Ali ibn Abitalib [ SALAMULLH ALAIH = PEACE FROM ALLAH BE UPON HIM (PBUH)]- his cousin and son in law and proclaimed: “whoever I am his guardian, this Ali is his guardian”; in fact Imam Ali (PBUH) was appointed as his successor. (The sunny sect maintains that it meant that the Muslims had to love Imam Ali and nothing more).
BB: There is a verse in the glorious Koran that says: “O you who believe! Verily your guardians are Allah, His messenger and those believers who establish prayer and pay the poor due while in prayer”. (5-55). This Ayah refers to Imam Ali (PBUH) who bestowed his ring to a beggar while praying. There is another ayah (verse) that says: “O you who believe! Obey Allah and his messenger and those who hold the guardianship of you…” (4-59). The Shi’ites believe that based on those two Ayahs and the Ghadir sermon and many other ayahs and narrations from the prophet, Imam Ali (PBUH) is not only the prophet’s only successor, but since his name has been mentioned as the guardian of Muslims after Allah and the prophet, he is infallible and his rulings is exactly that of Allah and prophet Muhammad (SAWA). (The Sunny sect maintains that the phrase “those who hold the guardianship of you” means whoever rules you -no matter how he has come to power- They maintain that the word “VALIIE” in the first ayah (verse) means friend ony).
CC: The Arabic word “WALIIE” which together with its derivatives is frequently mentioned in Koran-including the above mentioned ayahs, and derivatives like “WILAYAH”, “MAWLA” etc mean both guardian and guardianship, and friend and friendship. For Shi’ites, whenever those words are used in reference to Imam Ali (PBUH) and his successors in Koran and the prophet’s words, it means the absolute guardianship of Imam Ali and his 11 descendents together with prophet Muhammad (SAWA) and his beloved daughter Fatima Zahra (PBUH). They are infallible and their words and deeds represent Koran and prophet Muhammad (SAWA). To Sh’ites, they are the sole sources who can transfer the prophet’s words and tradition to Muslims and interpret Koran properly. These successors of prophet were all martyred except the last of them who is Imam Mahdi (PBUH) who disappeared from the eyes of the people upon becoming an Imam subsequent to the martyrdom of his father and is alive and lives incognito amongst the mankind and is considered the anchor of the world and will someday rise and establish the divine rule in which man will give up his personal will and all the righteous will live in coherence with God’s rules. Sin, misery and calamities will fully disappear from earth.
DD-The glorious Koran is composed of verses called “AYAH” meaning “sign” Every few or several hundred ayahs form a “SURAH”. There are 114 of such surahs in Koran. Koran is also divided into 30 sections “JUZ’E” of equal size. This division is artificial and is meant to make references easy.
The verses of the 29th Juz’e are mostly revealed in the city of Medina and in addition to ideological themes, relate to guiding the new Muslims in their daily lives and founding the new Muslim society.
The ayahs of the 30th Juz’e are mostly revealed in Mecca and mostly talk about monotheism, spiritual life, hereafter and ethics and are also in response to the disbelieves’ attacks on Islam.