Tafseer – Explanation of Surah Al-Faatihah – Dr Saleh as Saleh [Audio|En]

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A Concise Interpretation of the Opening Surah of the Quraan, Al-Fatihah [PDF]
Based upon the Tafseer of Shaykh Ibn Al’Uthaymeen, rahimahullaah

The Opening Soorah (Chapter)

This Soorah has been named Al-Faatihah (The Opening) because the Grand Qur’aan is commenced therewith. It is also called Al-Mathaanee (repeatedly recited verses) because it is recited in every Rak’ah (unit of prayer), and it has other names as well.

1. { بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ }I begin and commence [the task of recitation, or any other lawful task or affair] seeking the aid of the name of Allaah in the accomplishment [of the particular task] and in the pursuance of the right way [in the intended affair], and in petitioning for acceptance [of this or any other good deed].

{ الله } : Allaah is the ‘Alam (identifying name or title) of the Rabb, [01] the Blessed and the Most High, who, and non else besides Him, is worshipped rightfully and deservingly. This is the most particular name of the names of Allaah, the Most High, and cannot be applied to other than Him, the One free of all imperfection.

{ الرَّحْمَان } Ar-Rahmaan: The One whose Mercy encompasses the entire creation.

{ الرَّحِيم } Ar-Raheem: The One who has Mercy upon the believers. Both, Ar-Rahmaan and Ar-Raheem, are two names of the names of Allaah, the Most High.

2. { الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ } This is a statement of praise which Allaah praised Himself with. Implicit therein is an ordinance to His slaves to celebrate His Praise, for He, alone, is the One worthy of [all] praise. And He, the One free of all imperfection (Subhaanahu), is the One who originated all of creation, the One who takes charge (guards, protects, maintains, etc.) of their affairs; the One who nurtures and sustains all of His creation with His favours and blessings, and His friends (awliyaa’) with eemaan (faith) and righteous deeds.

3. { الرَّحْمَانAr-Rahmaan: The One whose Mercy encompasses the entire creation.
{ الرَّحِيمAr-Raheem: The One who has Mercy upon the believers.

4. { مَالِكِ يَوْمِ الدِّينِ } : It is He [Allaah], the One free of all imperfection, the only Owner (and the only Ruling Judge) of the Day of Resurrection (Yawmul Qiyaamah) which is the Day of Requital of deeds. Restricting [His] Dominion to the Day of Recompense (Yawmuddeen) is because no one will claim [the ownership of] anything on the Day of Resurrection, and because no soul shall speak except by His [Allaah’s] Leave. In the Muslim’s recitation of this Aayah in every Rak’ah of his prayers, there is a reminder for him of the Last Day, and an incitement to make himself ready by doing righteous deeds and refraining from sinful and evil acts.

5. { إِيَّاكَ نَعْبُدُ وَإِيَّاكَ نَسْتَعِينُ }We solely single You out [O Allaah] with all acts of obedience and all worship, and to You alone we appeal for aid in all of our affairs, for indeed all the matters are in Your Hand, none [else] possess not even an ant’s weight of it!

In this Aayah there is proof that it is not permissible for the ‘Abd [slaveworshipper of Allaah] to direct anything from the types of worship except to Allaah alone. In it there is a healing for the hearts from the ailment of devotion to other than Allaah, and from the diseases of Riyaa’ (showing off in good works), vanity, and arrogance.

6. { اهْدِنَا الصِّرَاطَ الْمُسْتَقِيمَ }Show us, guide us, and grant us the ability to purse the Straight Path and make us firmly established upon it until we meet You. The Straight Path is Islaam, the clear Way leading to attain the Pleasure of Allaah and His Jannah (Paradise), and which the end (last) of Allaah’s Messenger and Prophets [i.e. Muhammad(صَلَّى اللّٰهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّم)] directed us to it. There can be no way for the ‘Abd to attain happiness except by being upright on it.

7. { صِرَاطَ الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيْهِمْ غَيْرِ الْمَغْضُوبِ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلَا الضَّالِّينَ }The Way of those upon whom You have conferred Your Favours of the Prophets, the Siddeeqeen,[2] the martyrs, and the righteous. Indeed, they are the ones worthy of guidance and who deserve to be rightly directed. And make us not of those who pursed the way of those who were the objects of Allaah’s Anger (Al-Maghdoobi ‘Alayhim), the Jews and likewise, who knew the truth but did not apply it; nor of those who have gone astray, the ones who were misguided and consequently have strayed away for the right path. These are An-Nasaara (the Christians) and whoever follows their way.

In this du’aa (invocation) there is a cure for the Muslim’s heart from the ailment of Jahd (knowingly denying the truth), ignorance, and misguidance, and a proof that the greatest favour at all is that of Islaam. So whoever is more knowledgeable of the truth and more pursuant of it is more entitled to the Straight Path. Without a doubt that among mankind, aside from the Prophets ‘Alayhimus-Salaam, the companions of Allaah’s Messenger (صَلَّى اللّٰهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّم) have the best claim to this [Path]. Indeed, the Aayah proves their excellence and their great rank and standing, Radiyallaahu ‘Anhum (may Allaah be pleased with them).

It is praiseworthy for the reader to say “Aameen” after the recitation of Al-Faatihah which means “O Allaah, respond.” It is not, however, an Aayah of Sooarat Al-Faatihah as this is agreed upon by the scholars. For this reason they unanimously agreed that it is not to be written in the copies (Masaahif, sing. Mus’haf) of the Noble Qur’aan.

The slave hoping for Allaah’s Mercy and Forgiveness
Saleh As-Saleh, 1421 A.H
Revised 3rd of Dhul Qi’dah, 1427, Nov. 24th 2006


[1] Rabb: Allaah is sole Rabb: He is the One Who gave all things the power to grow, to move and to change, to Whom belongs the Creation and Commandment; the Master Who has no equal in His Sovereignty, Predominance, and Highness, the One Who Provides for and Sustains all that exists, and who brings into existence things from nothing. The word “Lord” used in translating the word Rabb into the English Language, is not truly equivalent to the comprehensive meaning of the name Ar-Rabb.

[2] Siddeeqeen (Sing. Siddeeq): One who eminently, or always, accepting, or confirming the truth in his saying, belief, and deeds. They are the followers of the Prophets who were first and foremost to believe in them, like Abu Bakr As-Siddeeq, Radiyallaahu ‘Anhu.

Related Linkhttps://abdurrahman.org/tafseer-ul-quran