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Prophet Adam (Peace be upon him)


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                    “Behold, your Lord said to the angels: "I will create a vicegerent on earth." They said: "Will You place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood?- whilst we do celebrate Your praises and glorify Your holy (name)?" He said: "I know what you know not.” (al-Baqara, 30)

 

FIRST INHABITANTS OF THE WORLD: THE JINN

 

Life on the earth started long before the creation of humankind. Firstly, plants were created; then animals and lastly human beings were created.

Before humankind, the improvement and control of the earth were assigned to the jinn from spiritual beings. [1]

Allah the Glorious created the jinn so that “they would recognize Him with faith and worship Him” just like the humankind. [2]

However, the jinn did not behave in accordance with their reason of creation; and they caused mischief on the earth instead of justice.

Besides, they went so far in mischief and rebellion that their bad deeds excelled their good deeds far and away, and in return, the position of ownership of the world was taken away from them. [3]

Allah the Supreme wished to create another being on world instead of them, which would improve and control the world well.

This new species of being, to whom the control of the world would be given, was the humankind.

 

NEWS GIVEN TO ANGELS

 

The first human being Allah created on the earth was Adam (pbuh). Later Eve was created as a spouse for him. The humankind was generated from them.

Allah the Glorious gave the news that He would create Adam to angels first:

—    “I am about to create man from clay, [4] I will create a vicegerent on earth. [5] When I have fashioned him (in due proportion) and breathed into him of My spirit, fall ye down in obeisance unto him.” [6]

Angels were surprised by this order. They thought the control of the earth would be given to them after the jinn, because the control of the earth was taken away from the jinn as a result of their mischievousness and rebelliousness. However, angels would obey and worship Allah all day and night. In this sense, it seemed that they were worthy of the ownership of the world.

However, this expectation was in vain. Allah declared that He would create a new living being called “human” and would make him the vicegerent of the earth. Moreover, He ordered angels to prostrate before him. And it meant that the living being to be created was superior to angels. But how could it be? For what reason could the living being called human be superior to angels who obeyed and worshipped Allah all day and night? Not to even mention that angels found out that the humankind would cause mischief and rebel on earth. [7] So, what could be the wisdom in making a living being, who would cause mischief and rebel, and shed blood on earth, vicegerent of the earth? In order to find the answer to the issue which caused them surprise and curiosity, angels said to Allah the Glorious:

— O Lord! Will You make those who will make mischief and shed blood on earth vicegerent? Is our worship and revering You not enough? We praise, extol and bless You al the time.” [8]

Allah answered angels’ question as follows:

— Deep secret and fine wisdom do not only consist of what you know. I know what you know not.” [9]

The reason why Allah informed angels about the creation of humankind was that there was a close relationship between those two different beings.

Indeed, angels have got a great influence on human beings’ existence, acts and behaviors. [10]

 

CREATION OF PROPHET ADAM

 

After that conversation with angels, Allah created Adam.

All of the Quranic verses which tell about the creation of humankind clearly state that Adam was created from the element of earth (clay).

Some of the verses are as follows:

“Behold, thy Lord said to the angels: "I am about to create man from clay” (as-Sad, 71)

“We created man from sounding clay, from mud moulded into shape” (al-Hijr, 26)

“He created man from sounding clay like unto pottery” (ar-Rahman, 14)

According to the narration of Abu Musa al-Ash’ari:

- The Messenger of Allah stated: “Allah the Supreme created Adam from a handful of earth He gathered from all over the world. That is why human beings are in accordance with earth; some of them have got pink skin, some of them have got black skin, some of them have got white and some of them have got dark skins, and the colors in between them. Just like the types of earth, there are human beings who are sharp, smooth and mild, good and bad.” [11]

According to the statement of the verse, Allah created the humankind with His own hand of power. (as-Sad, 75).

And our Prophet said: “Allah the Supreme kneaded Adam’s dough with His hands in 40 days” [12]

All of them clearly indicate that humankind was created as a superior and separate species. As a matter of fact, humankind did not evolve from another species as Darwinists claim.

It is deduced from the Quranic verses and hadiths which tell about the creation of Adam that his creation was not all of a sudden but by stages and that it was long after the clay from which Allah created Adam was shaped. Indeed, Allah is capable of creating things out of nothing and all of a sudden; He can also create gradually and by compounding. There is no difference between those two ways of creation in terms of His might. Creation sometimes occurred exceptionally all of a sudden and sometimes occurred gradually compounding from different substances, depending on the reasons. Said Nursi states the following regarding the issue in The Flashes:

“Indeed, the All-Powerful One of Glory has two ways of creating: The First is through origination and invention. That is, He brings a being into existence out of nothing, out of non-existence, and creates everything necessary for it, also out of nothing, and places those necessities in its hand.

The Second is through composition, through art. That is, He forms certain beings out of the elements of the universe in order to demonstrate subtle instances of wisdom, like displaying the perfections of His wisdom and the manifestations of many of His Names. Through the law of providing, he sends particles and matter, which are dependent on His command, to these beings and employs the particles in them.” [13]

Adam’s creation, which was not all of a sudden but gradual, is included in the second form of creation.

 

TEACHING OF NAMES TO PROPHET ADAM AND HIS TESTING WITH ANGELS

 

Having created Adam, Allah taught him the names, essences and features of the things so that he could settle on the earth, and benefit from what is around. It is called the teaching of names (ta’lim-ul asma). Then, He wished to show angels that this new creature that they despised was superior to them in knowledge and comprehension. For this reason, He tested Adam and angels on their knowledge. Showing several things to angels He said:

“If you are still insistent on your question why I made him the vicegerent, tell the names and the features of these things.” [14]

Angels could not answer because they did not have the knowledge of them. They apologized to Allah:

“Glory to Thee, of knowledge we have none, save what Thou Hast taught us: In truth it is Thou Who art perfect in knowledge and wisdom.” [15] Now it was Adam’s turn. Allah said to him:

“O Adam! Tell the names of these things to angels.” Adam told them their names and features one by one and Allah said to angels:

“Did I not tell you that I know the secrets of heaven and earth, and I know what you reveal and what you conceal?” [16]

The greatest miracle of Adam’s is that he was taught the names of the things and tested with angels. At the end of this test, it was discovered that Prophet Adam was superior to angels in knowledge and the secret behind why humankind was made the vicegerent of the earth was revealed.

“What is meant by the names taught to Adam is the things which they represent. Maybe Allah taught Adam the knowledge of things without a limit. Allah also created necessary knowledge of the essence of things, divine laws that rule over them, ways of benefit and harm in human mind, as a requirement of his talent. The apparent situation confirms it. Human beings have inherited that inborn talent from their ancestors for thousands of years and eventually have solved the mysteries and laws of nature which realizes Allah’s promise “I am about to create a vicegerent on the earth” and makes them the vicegerent of the earth. It has been said that Allah created Adam as a vicegerent of mountains, seas, plants, animals, the earth and the sky, and He created for him the knowledge related to humankind that he could need in order to face the life.”  [17]

 

PROSTRATION OF ANGELS AND SATAN’S REJECTION TO PROSTRATE

 

When superiority of Adam was revealed as a result of the test, Allah ordered angels to prostrate before Adam. All the angels obeyed this order without hesitation. [18]

It is narrated that firstly Gabriel, then Michael, and then Israfel and Azrael prostrated before Adam. And other angels followed them in prostration.

This order of prostration was not meant for worship but for respect. It was an expression of admitting Adam’s superiority and submitting to Allah who gave this superiority to him. (*)

Amongst the angels, there was another being called Azazel. This being, who would be called Iblis (**) and Satan due to his disobedience to Allah, was not created from divine light like angels but from fire. [19] He was indeed from the jinn. [20] However, he had been with angels for a long time. He had reached an honorable position amongst them with his worship and knowledge. For this reason, he was also ordered to prostrate before Adam.

Nevertheless, Iblis was not born innocent (sinless) like angels. He was too arrogant. He attributed the high position he gained to his own worship and knowledge. He believed that he was superior to these beings.

For this reason, he strongly opposed to prostrate before Adam, because of his arrogance. [21]

Angels were surprised by it.

Frankly, Allah the Glorious had not ordered or advised Iblis something which opposes to his desire and He had not tested him with anything which would trigger his arrogance until that time. The fact that Iblis had not rebelled and that he had always been obedient till that time was because the events which had happened and the responsibilities which he had been given until then had been in accordance with his desires and wishes.

However, the prayers and worship performed in such situations cannot be said to have been only in order to obey the Divine Order and earn Allah’s pleasure. This is because when something is both appropriate for Allah’s order and one’s desires, it cannot be assured whether it is Allah’s orders or one’s own desires that he obeys. [22]

In this sense, Allah’s order for all angels to prostrate before Adam following his creation was also a test of loyalty for Iblis. That test showed the real feelings of Iblis and revealed his true essence, the arrogance and proud that he concealed.

Thus, angels understood that Iblis’s friendship and his resemblance to them was a result of the fact that his own desires and Divine orders had not been in conflict till that time and thus there had not been a situation which made him rebel. Otherwise, Iblis had nothing to do with the angelic trait of “ismah” which means “not being rebellious against Allah’s orders but obeying them”.

 

IBLIS’S DEMAGOGY

 

When Satan refused to prostrate before Adam, Allah the Glorious asked him the reason of his behavior:

“O Iblis, what prevents you from prostrating before Adam whom I created with my hands? Did you disobey because you deem yourself superior to Adam?” [23]

Instead of apologizing to Allah for his disobedience, Iblis, who was taken away by his pride, tried to prove his rebellion was right:

“I am more decent than Adam, because you created me from fire and him from clay. Shall I prostrate before someone whom you created from clay?” said he, despising Adam.

Iblis revealed the arrogance and pride he had inside by saying “I am more decent than Adam.” To prove this claim right, he put forward that he was created from fire and Adam was created from clay. In this way, he tried to prove his superiority to and decency over Adam judging from the elements they were created from.

 

In this claim of Satan’s were hidden all of Satanic characteristics:

a) Iblis could not admit that his primary duty was to serve and obey Allah and that service and obedience required modesty and submission. Therefore, he chose to complain and rebel in response to his Creator.

b) He dared to claim that he was superior to Adam, for he was created from fire and refused to prostrate before him although his duty was to merely obey. Also, he put this claim forward as the reason for him not to prostrate before him. Thus, Iblis became the first being which attempted to take the way of perversity and false explanation and of willful misinterpretation.

c) It is a true judgment that Iblis said “You created me from fire and him from clay.” However, concluding from that judgment, he made a comparison between those two elements of creation and eventually decided that “fire was superior to earth.” That decision of Iblis was nothing but merely a demagogy. As a matter of fact, with that expression, he confessed that the creator was Allah and, on the other hand, influenced by his arrogance and proud, he attracted the attention to the elements they were created from and sought decency and superiority solemnly in material factors. He deliberately ignored the aim Allah created Adam for, the superiority of knowledge and reasoning He bestowed upon him, and that He made him the vicegerent of the earth. That is to say, he thought that Adam had no other specialty than being created out of earth, and that he had no other specialty than being created out of fire. Therefore, he considered that Allah the Glorious, who bestows the specialties and features of things from His treasury of kindness and mercy, was dependant on materials.

However, the reason why the elements of the earth and fire have got different features is not the essence of those elements but it is a result of Allah’s decision. With his utterance, “You created me from fire and him from clay”, Iblis, demagogically made a false reasoning like “Fire is more decent than earth” and claimed that he was more decent than Adam putting forward that false reasoning as his evidence. [24]

In fact, both fire and earth are two elements created by Allah. They are equal to each other in terms of creation. Besides, no creature has got a specialty and superiority of their own apart from what Allah has bestowed upon them, no being has got the right to despise other beings. Moreover, it would be seen that earth has got more specialties than fire and features which are more precious than it when fire and earth are compared in terms of their specialties. These specialties and features that earth has got are explained in Masnawi an-Nuriyya, as follows.

“Just as the world is the heart of the universe, so too is the element earth the heart of the world. And the shortest way that leads one to their goals is earth like modesty and humility. Maybe earth is a shorter way to the Creator of the skies (universe) than the highest sky. It is earth which is the most appropriate for the manifestation of Godhood, works of might, place of vicegerency and manifestations of the names al-Hayy and al-Qayyum. The highest mercy is over the waters; similarly, the highest form of life and resurrection is on earth. Earth is the greatest mirror reflecting manifestations and phenomena. Yes, the more elegant is the mirror of something which is opaque, the more obvious it reflects the appearance of it. And the more opaque is the mirror of something which is elegant and bright, the more lustrous it reflects the manifestations of the names.

For instance, in the mirror of air, only a weak light of the sun is seen. Although the sun can be seen with its whole light in the mirror of water, its seven colors cannot be seen. However, the mirror of earth shows the seven colors of the sun with the colors of the flowers.

The hadith which is translated as “The position in which one is closest to Allah is when he prostrates, putting his head on earth” indicates that mystery. [25]

It is so obvious that it is a false reasoning of Iblis to be proud of the fact the he was created from fire, while Allah the Glorious created the humankind, which is the vicegerent of the world, from the element of earth that has got so many elevated features and specialties.


A Witty Remark:

Teaching of names to Prophet Adam, prostration of angels before Adam and Satan’s objection to prostrate before him are told in various chapters and verses of the Quran. The reason why those events are deemed so important is explained in “The Words” as follows:

“In the All-Wise Qur’an are numerous minor events behind which are concealed universal principles, and which are shown as the tips of general laws. For example, He taught Adam the Names, all of them. This is the ‘teaching of the Names,’ which was a miracle of Adam before the angels because of his ability to be Allah’s vicegerent on earth, and was a minor event. But it forms the tip of a universal principle which is as follows: it was the teaching, due to man’s comprehensive disposition, of countless sciences, and numerous all-embracing branches of knowledge about the universe, and extensive learning about the Creator’s attributes and qualities, which afforded man superiority over not only the angels but also the heavens and earth and mountains in the question of the bearing of the Supreme Trust. And like the Qur’an states that through his comprehensive disposition, man is Allah’s spiritual vicegerent on earth, so the minor event in the Unseen of the angels prostrating before Adam and Satan not prostrating is the tip of a broad and universal observed principle; these hint at a extensive truth which is as follows:

Through mentioning the angels’ obedience and submission before the person of Adam, and Satan’s pride and refusal, the Qur’an makes understood that most of the physical beings in the universe and their representatives and appointed beings are subjugated to man, and that man’s senses are predisposed and amenable to benefiting from all of them. And pointing out what a fearsome enemy and serious obstacle in the path of man’s progress are evil matter and its representatives and evil inhabitants, which corrupt man’s nature and drive him down wrong paths, the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition, while speaking of a minor matter with Adam (Peace be upon him), converses in elevated fashion with the whole universe and all mankind.”

“By describing under the title of ‘the teaching of the Names’ all the attainments of learning and scientific progress and wonders of technology which man manifests through his comprehensive disposition, this wondrous verse contains the following subtle and elevated allusion: all attainments and perfections, all learning, all progress, and all sciences, have an elevated reality which is based on one of the Divine Names. On being based on the Name, which is concealed under numerous veils and has various manifestations and different spheres, the sciences and arts and attainments find their perfection and become reality. They are not some incomplete and deficient shadow.” [26]

 

EXPULSION OF IBLIS FROM THE MERCY OF ALLAH

 

Allah the Glorious was very angry at the arrogance and pride of Iblis:

- “Get thee down from this: it is not for thee to be arrogant here: get out, for thou art of the meanest (of creatures). [27] said Allah and expelled him.

By expelling him, Allah reminded Iblis that He was the only owner of all superiorities and high qualities, and that He could elevate the one He wished and demean the one He wished whenever He wanted. Iblis paid severely the penalty of not knowing his limits. [28]

***

Iblis understood that it was not a reason for superiority from which elements the beings were created, after Allah the Supreme’s wrathful address to him.

He was desperate because he thought that Allah would exterminate him because of the fault he had made. However, he could not even think of apologizing because of his pride. As a last resort, he asked Allah of something:

- “Give me respite till the day they are raised up (the day of resurrection).” said he. [29]

In his wish, there is another thing that shows his satanic characteristics.

Iblis wanted respite until the day of resurrection because he thought of avoiding death as he meant the stage when the Sur (pipe, horn) would be blown for the first time. However, he did not utter that desire clearly but tried to reach his desire craftily by asking for respite till the day of resurrection. This is because it was the day of “coming into life.” After that day, there would not be death anymore. He was planning to avoid agony of death by omitting the Day of Judgment.

However, as Allah - who sees into even the smallest secrets of people’s hearts - knew his plan replied to his demand of respite as follows:

-“Be thou among those who have respite." [30]

So, Satan will live till the Day of Judgment and after experiencing the agony of death like other beings, he will be resurrected in order to account.

 

SATAN’S AMBUSH

 

Iblis was very happy to have the respite he wanted. Instead of spending this long respite with repentance and thanksgiving and trying to escape from this degrading end, he insisted on his rebellion and answered Allah:

- Then, because You made me stray, degrade and become perverted, I will try to stray humankind. I will sit on your straight way and lay in ambush on that way of faith and right destination that leads humans to You. I will stray them from the straight way by attacking them at their front, back, right, left and all sides. I will do my best to stray them. Then you will not find most of the people obedient and thankful to You. I cannot stray only a small number of them. And they are Your true servants. [31]

Thus, Iblis declared his enmity to Adam and his generation obviously. He would take his revenge by straying people from the way of Allah. And he was very hopeful for that. He was hopeful because he knew in which natural disposition and temperament Adam was created. The Messenger of Allah expressed the issue with the following words:

“When Allah created Adam in Heaven and left him alone for a while, Iblis started to wander around him and figure out what he was. Finally, when he saw that he was empty inside, he understood that he was created in a natural disposition that cannot control lower-self’s tendencies.” [32]

When Iblis revealed his ill will about Adam, he was expelled from mercy once again, having been cursed by Allah. He was expelled from Heaven and prohibited to enter Heaven forever.

Allah also said to him:

- O Iblis, pester Adam and his generation with all might and power you have. Use your all devilish mischievousness and tricks. I swear that whoever of the humankind leaves my way and gives into you, I will fill the Hell with you and the ones who follow you. However, those true servants of Mine, whom you said you cannot deceive, never quit praying in order to deserve my consent. No matter how much you try, you cannot rule over them.” [33]

As it can be understood, there will come such people in the future that Satan will not be able to stray them from the straight way. Contrarily, Iblis’s trying to pervert them will only result in advancing their goodness.

Although a diamond of a few grams is lighter than tonnes of coal, it is much more superior to and precious than coal; those people whom Satan will not be able to deceive will be enough for saving humankind’s honor and proving that humankind is worthy of being the vicegerent of the world. Allah’s rightfulness of wisdom and reason in creating humankind will be realized with them.

The fact that those people whom Satan cannot deceive are not many in number but that they are great in preciousness resulted in creation of humankind despite of all their mischief and rebellion. It is also the reason behind Allah’s allowance to great fight and conflict between the humankind and Satan. If the fight between humankind and Satan were not allowed, those righteous servants Allah exalted would not come out and thus, services expected from humankind would be in vain.

 

CREATION OF EVE

 

After the prohibition of Iblis’ entrance into Heaven, Allah created Eve as his spouse and a lifelong friend in order to save Adam from loneliness and to enable the reproduction on earth. According to a well-known narration, Eve was created from Adam’s left rib bone. And the majority of the Quran interpreters interpreted the verse, which is translated as, “O mankind! Be careful of your duty to your Lord, Who created you from a single soul (Adam) and from it created its mate (Eve)…” [34] in line with this narration.

However, there are some scholars who oppose that interpretation. As a matter of fact, Abu Muslim Isfahani interpreted the expression “from it created its mate” in the 1st verse of chapter an-Nisa as “from the same kind of it”.

Another hadith which states that woman is created from rib bone was not said to mean woman was physically created from the rib according to some scholars. With this expression, it was meant that woman is sensitive, aggressive and fractious in her natural disposition and that she will not obey man properly. For this reason, men are advised to accept women as they are and treat them as gently as possible and to avoid offending them.

Another narration by Bukhari supports that view. In this narration, the Prophet says:

“Woman is like the rib. If you try to straighten her, you will break her. If you want to get on well with her and be happy, you can only benefit from her by accepting this reality” [35]

Regardless of whether Eve was created from the clay from which Adam was created or from his rib, we do not have any information about the real truth behind this creation.

 

FORBIDDEN FRUIT

 

As it is narrated, Adam and Eve were settled in Heaven, on a golden throne and dressed in clothes made of divine light. At that time, Allah addressed them:

“O Adam! You and your spouse, dwell in Heaven. Benefit from the boons of Heaven abundantly” [36]

Moreover, they were also told that they would not experience any starvation and thirst in Heaven, they would never be without a dwelling and clothes, in short, they would never experience any destitution and hardships. [37]

Allah also warned Adam and Eve saying that Satan was a major enemy of them. Satan could deceive and lead them to rebellion and eventually cause them to be expelled from Heaven. And on earth, great troubles and hardships were awaiting them. For this reason, they had to be alert against Satan’s deceptiveness.

According to what is narrated from Bukhari, when Adam entered Heaven, Allah ordered him to go to angels and salute them, and then to listen carefully to their answer. Allah stated that it would be an example of salutation both for him and the generation to come from him.

Adam obeyed that order and saluted the angels. And the angels said “Assalamu alaike wa rahmatullahi” in response to him. [38]

It is the secret behind the importance of salutation in Islam and why it became the sign of Islam.

Adam and Eve were allowed to do whatever they wish in Heaven and to benefit from all boons in Heaven. There was only one exception to that wide freedom: Adam and Eve were prohibited to go near a tree in Heaven and eat its fruits. [39] That prohibition was the first responsibility Allah placed on them. Except for it, they were free to do anything. Allah told Adam and Eve that if they did not obey His rule, they would be from unfair people and be expelled from Heaven. [40]

 

IBLIS’S PLAN

 

Allah the Supreme had placed Adam and Eve in Heaven temporarily. Adam’s dwelling in Heaven was not forever. It was possible to understand it from Allah’s address to them when they entered Heaven. [41]

Iblis had been waiting for an opportunity to deceive Adam and planning with which trick he could deceive him since Adam was settled in Heaven. He was delighted when he heard that a tree in Heaven was forbidden for Adam. There was the opportunity he had been waiting for. Immediately, he started planning his baleful trick. He wanted to get them to go near that tree and eat its fruit somehow.

 

FIRST SIN

 

While Adam and Eve were wandering around in Heaven, they would sometimes come near to the door of Heaven. Although Satan was expelled from Heaven, he was not sent to earth yet. He was watching them from the outside of Heaven and wandering around outside Heaven. [42]

He found the opportunity he had been waiting for, finally.

It was when Adam and Eve came near the door of Heaven. Iblis called to them from the outside and told them to come close to him. He started making up stories to get them to eat that tree’s fruit:

- O Adam! Shall I show you a way to stay in Heaven forever and gain an endless sovereignty?

-  What is it? Show it…

Satan stretched out his finger and pointed out to the tree which Allah had forbidden.

Adam had already understood that Satan was trying to deceive them. He scolded him and sent him away.

However, Satan did not seem to give up. After a while, he came near them again. This time, he said:

- Why do you think your Lord forbade this tree for you? It is the tree of immortality. If you eat its fruit, you will stay in Heaven forever.

Or you will turn to angels. What are you still waiting for? Go eat from its fruits and stay in Heaven forever. [43]

Adam and Eve did not pay attention to those words either.

- “Go away! Do you want to deceive us? Allah forbade that tree for us. Our duty is to obey Him.” they said.

Iblis’s plan was inconclusive at first. Yet, he did not lose his hopes. He kept repeating the same words every time he saw Adam and Eve. He reminded them that they would stay in Heaven temporarily, by saying “If you want to stay in Heaven for ever, you do not have any other choice but to eat that fruit.”

He even swore that he was telling the truth and that the only thing he wanted was the good of Adam and Eve. [44]

Satan understood that he could deceive Eve more easily after some time. He realized that his suggestions had an effect on her. It could be easier to deceive Adam through Eve.

With that thought, he focused his propaganda on Eve. As a matter of fact, he got a result. He managed to get Eve to believe him.

Then he wanted Eve to persuade Adam.

Everything worked out as Satan wanted. Eve managed to persuade Adam. She persuaded him to go near the forbidden tree and eat its fruit in order to stay in Heaven forever and have endless bliss. [45]

Satan figured out the temptation in human’s heart towards endless bliss. [46] He managed to trigger that inborn temptation in their nature by persistent efforts and intensive propaganda.

As soon as Adam and Eve ate the fruit of the forbidden tree, the heavenly clothes on them disappeared. They were suddenly naked. They were ashamed of it and tried to cover themselves with leaves of trees. They understood their mistake. Nevertheless, it was too late; they had disobeyed Allah by listening to Satan. That was Satan’s first victory over humankind.

 

ADAM AND EVE BEING SENT DOWN TO EARTH

 

Their Lord called unto them: "Did I not forbid you that tree, and tell you that Satan was an avowed enemy unto you?" [47] Hearing this, Adam and Eve were ashamed of themselves. They admitted their fault and confessed it and said that they were regretful of what they had done: “Our Lord! We have wronged our own souls: If thou forgive us not and bestow not upon us Thy Mercy, we shall certainly be lost.” [48] This repentance of theirs was accepted later after they were sent down onto Earth.

Satan’s aim in having Adam and Eve eat the fruit of the forbidden tree was to lead them to disobedience which would deprive them of Heaven permanently. He thought that they would also be expelled from the mercy of Allah and be deprived of it eternally like himself this way.

However, he had never thought that Adam and Eve would repent for their fault and be forgiven due to their repentance. Actually, his main aim in encouraging every believer to disobey Allah is making themselves like him and pursue disobedience. He never thinks that those people will repent and be forgiven. If he already knew that they would repent, he would never bother with them. To be more frank, he hopes that believers will no more find delight in faith in their hearts, being taken away with sins and that they will lose their faith permanently as a result of persevering in sinning. Nevertheless, when a believer is saved from his sins through a purely sincere repentance, Satan feels wrecked because of his anger and defeat. As a matter of fact, it happened just like this in his case, too and eventually Satan could not reach his aim.

Allah had warned Adam and Eve before and told them that they would have been expelled from Heaven if they had followed Satan. For this reason, He expelled them from Heaven and sent them down to the Earth because of their fault.

Now a brand-new life was beginning for them. The generations to come from Adam and Eve was going to live on the Earth for a certain time until the Day of Judgment and they were going to benefit from the boons and blessings endowed upon them throughout this period of time and then they were going to die. However, this death would not mean non-existence. They were going to be resurrected one day and receive the rewards for their good deeds and suffer from the punishment of their evil deeds performed on the Earth. It was the requirement of Allah’s pre-eternal wisdom.

While sending them down to the Earth, Allah called unto them, Adam, Eve and Satan all together:

“Get ye down, with enmity between yourselves.” [49]

That is to say, enmity and great conflict between the humankind and Satan were going to continue on the Earth as well, because Satan thought that it was the creation of humankind which led him to rebel and to be expelled from the mercy of Allah. Therefore, he was feeling hatred with all his existence towards the humankind and he had become an enemy for them. He would, of course, try to deceive them, captivate them and make them rebel against Allah.

Man was weak in disposition, which made him prone to be deceived by Satan’s delusions and tricks. Moreover, there were weaknesses in his disposition such as forgetfulness, impatience and emotionality. It was possible for him to protect himself only with continuous guidance and warning. The Divine Mercy, of course, would not leave a being with such disposition alone and on his own. He would not leave it without support against an intriguer like Satan. Actually, He did not leave him without support. Allah the Glorious warned Adam and Eve about the issue when He sent them down to the Earth:

“Get ye down all from here; and if, as is sure, there comes to you Guidance – True Faiths and Prophets - from me, whosoever follows My guidance, on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve. But those who reject Faith and belie Our Signs, they shall be Companions of the Fire; they shall abide therein." [50]

 

***

Adam and Eve were sent down unto different places on the Earth. Adam was placed on an island called Ceylon which is in south of India and Eve was placed in Jeddah. [51] They lived far away from each other for a long time. They were taught how to repent for their sins before they were sent down to the Earth. And they repented for their sins while on the Earth as they were taught. Finally, Allah accepted their sincere and proper repentance and forgave them. They began to live together there. [52] According to the narration, Adam’s repentance was accepted on the tenth day of the month Muharram, which is the Day of Ashurah.

Allah taught Adam the ways of earning livelihood, especially farming, so that they will obtain their daily needs. [53] Thus, Allah’s warning of hardships and misery “O Adam! Verily, this is an enemy to thee and thy wife: so let him not get you both out of the Garden, so that thou art landed in misery.” [54] was manifested. Although this warning meant that both of them, Adam and Eve, would be expelled from Heaven, the misery and hardships to be experienced on the Earth were placed upon Adam only. It was deduced from this that it was men’s duty to earn livelihood both for themselves and for their women and eventually the hardship of earning livelihood was also for men.

 

THE SIN OF EATING THE FRUIT OF THE FORBIDDEN TREE AND WISDOMS BEHIND ADAM’S BEING EXPELLED FROM HEAVEN

 

Christians exaggerated this sin of eating the fruit of the forbidden tree so much that they put forward that it is an unforgivable sin and an indelible taint which caused the humankind to have been cursed and expelled from Heaven and sent down to the Earth. This belief of the original sin has endured for ages to this day in Christian world. [55] However, there are many good results and useful wisdoms for the humankind behind this occurrence, which is apparently unfavorable.

a. Adam was sent down unto the Earth not because he was cursed as he ate the fruit of the forbidden tree, as Christians thought. Contrarily, it was for the value of the humankind and their difference from and superiority to other beings, which were then yet a potential, to be manifest. Many prophets, saints and many righteous people, who deserved Heaven, grew up on the Earth, which became the place of trials, as a requirement of Allah’s wisdom, through this occurrence.

And this occurrence was not anything against the humankind.

Contrarily, it turned out to be a blessing for the humankind; the earth was improved and has been the plot for so many civilizations due to it.

The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) says in a hadith,:

“The most virtuous day on which the Sun rises is Friday, because Adam was created on that day; he was placed in Heaven on that day and he was expelled from Heaven on that day. The Day of Judgment is going to be on Friday, too.” [56]

As it is obvious, Adam’s being expelled from Heaven was mentioned amongst the reasons which make Friday a virtuous day, in the hadith.

Actually, eating the fruit of the forbidden tree is neither a fault which happened coincidentally nor a meaningless event. It happened as a result of Allah’s wisdom and decision, in accordance with Fate’s judgment and resulted in many benefits.

It is possible to comprehend it from both hadiths and Quranic verses. A hadith is narrated as follows:

“Prophet Adam and Prophet Moses talked to each other in the world of spirits. Moses said: O Adam, you are our father! You caused us to be expelled from Heaven and to live in misery.” And Adam said to him: “And you are Moses; Allah made you superior by addressing His words (Book) to you. He wrote a book with His own hand for you. How can you criticize me for something which Allah had decided for me forty years before He created me?” Moses was persuaded and silenced by these words.” [57]

As it can be deduced from the hadith, this event happened as a result of the Fate’s judgment and according to the permission and decision by the Divine Wisdom. What Allah expected from human beings could be actualized only by Adam’s being sent down to Earth from Heaven. Of course, Allah could not expel Adam and Eve from Heaven, where He placed them, without a reason. So, this event was an apparent reason and resulted in this divine decision to be realized.

Frankly, if Allah did not will Adam to be expelled from heaven, He would not let Satan deceive human beings in the first place. And He would not make just one tree forbidden to them, leaving others free; and thus He would not give Satan the opportunity to deceive them by using the forbidden tree.

Badiuzzaman explains how expulsion from Heaven resulted in the wisdom behind Allah’s creation of humankind to be manifest as follows:

Question: What wisdom does it spring from, Adam (Upon whom be peace) being expelled from Paradise?

Answer: The wisdom of it concerns the charging of duties; Adam was sent charged with such a duty that the unfolding of all mankind’s spiritual progress and the revealing of all mankind’s potentialities and man’s essential nature being a comprehensive mirror to all the Divine Names, are the results of it.

If Adam had remained in Paradise, his rank would have been fixed like that of the angels; man’s potentialities would not have unfolded. In any case, the angels, whose ranks are unchanging, are numerous, and there is no need for man to perform that sort of worship. Indeed, since Divine wisdom required a realm of accountability appropriate to the potentialities of man, who would traverse infinite degrees, he was expelled from Paradise for his well-known sin, sin being the requirement of man’s nature and contrary to that of the angels.

That is to say, just as Adam being expelled from Paradise was pure wisdom and pure mercy, so is it just and right that the unbelievers should be sent to Hell.” [58] So, Adam’s being expelled from Heaven is both a wisdom and a mercy.

b. In this event, there are significant lessons to be drawn for the humankind, in the example of Adam of Eve, because Adam and Eve understood through this event they experienced that human beings had some weaknesses and they had a disposition which made them prone to be deceived by Satan and therefore they needed to seek refuge with Allah all the time.

They fully understood that following Satan would put human beings in such big troubles. They learnt what following Satan could cost them and thus they learnt that they should not be deceived by him again. If Adam and Eve had been sent down unto Earth directly, without staying in Heaven for some time, and if they had not been imposed to Satan’s first trick, they could not have learnt all matters properly. Even though they had had divine warnings and advices, they would not have known how much following Satan could degrade one and how much of Allah’s wrath it would cause. However, this event they experienced was a good lesson for them and taught them a lot of things. It showed them the true colors and danger of Satan clearly. A well-known proverb says: “One trouble teaches better than a thousand advices.”

The following is stated in the Quran after the event that happened between Adam and Satan is narrated:

“O ye Children of Adam! Let not Satan seduce you, in the same manner as He got your parents out of the Garden, stripping them of their raiment, to expose their shame.” [59]

Allah invites all human beings to learn lessons through this cautionary event in question so that they could be alert for Satan’s tricks.

c. Maybe, the most important result of this significant even is the fact that it paved the way for human beings to repent. Human beings cannot avoid sins and faults due to their disposition. For them, having such disposition and repentance is a significant blessing. Through it, they can be purified from their sins and faults and gain Allah’s forgiveness and mercy.

The Dearest Prophet put this matter into words as follows:

“Man always sins and makes mistakes. The most virtuous person is s/he who does not persist on their sins and repents right away…”

Another hadith says:

“One who repents for his sins becomes as if he had never sinned.” [60]

The following saying by Abu’l-Hasan Shazali is quite though-provoking:

“What an honorable fault it was to elevate the faulty one to the rank of vicegerency and to enable repentance for people to come till the Day of Judgment.” [61]

This saying is not meant to praise the fault but to congratulate Adam on coming down to the Earth and be a vicegerent there and also to appreciate having such nice blessing as repentance.

The following hadith expresses very well what a significant blessing and means of salvation the repentance is:

“The Honorable Messenger one day said that there would be believers who would enter Heaven because of their sins. Hearing this, the Companions asked him to explain it by saying: How can it be, O Messenger of Allah? The Messenger of Allah said: A believer does not forget the sins he committed and this forms a fear of Allah in his heart and he seeks refuge with his Lord sincerely. This way, he becomes a favorable servant in the eyes of Allah.” [62]

Abu’l Jawza says: “A servant (of Allah) commits a sin and he feels great regret inside. Finally, he goes to Heaven. When Satan sees him, he complains saying I wish I had not made him sin…” [63]

 

THE FIRST HUMAN BEING - THE FIRST PROPHET

 

After Adam and Eve reunited on the Earth, the human generation started to reproduce fast. As stated in the History of Tabari, every time Eve gave birth, she had twin babies, one being girl and the other being boy. Due to the obligation of the humankind to increase in number, marriage between siblings was not forbidden yet in those times. However, a girl and a boy born at the same time were not allowed to marry each other but they could marry the ones who were born either before or after them. This obligation was abolished when the population of human beings reached a certain level. And marriage between siblings was prohibited for the first time in the laws of Noah. This prohibition continued in all religions after Noah. [64] It is said that the population of human beings had reached forty thousand by the time Adam died. [65]

 

***

Allah made Adam both father and prophet for people to descend from him. Thus, he was honored with being both the first human being and the first prophet. [66]

Adam carried out the duty of prophethood until his death. Moreover, Allah had sent him a list of instructions of ten pages indicating His orders and prohibitions. Considering these instructions the most important part of his duty, Adam taught them to his sons word for word. He told them about Satan’s enmity towards human beings, the ways of protection from him, about how he was deceived by him once and thus expelled from Heaven for a certain time. Moreover, he told them that this world was a temporary place of life and the real life was in the otherworld; and he advised them not to be deceived by Satan’s tricks and that they were going to have either reward or punishment for what they did on the Earth.

 

BUILDING THE KAABA

 

According to linguists, Kaaba is a proper noun derived from the root Ka’b. And Ka’b means to be high, to have four corners and to bloom.

And as a technical term, it is a holy building which is known with evidence to have been built by Prophet Abraham in the middle of Makkah Valley, which is rectangular in shape and surrounded by haram walls and which is made fard for people, who can afford and have got physical strength, to visit for once in their lifetime.

According to the statements of Islamic historians, the Kaaba has been destroyed and rebuilt 11 times until today.

According to narrations, the Kaaba was first built by angels. The Kaaba is an image, on the Earth, of Bayt al-Ma’mur, which is a place above the seven skies and below the Earth and continuously circumambulated (tawaf) by angels. Bayt al-Ma’mur and the Kaaba, which is also known as Baytullah, stand in the same line, the former being in the skies and the latter being on the Earth. Bayt al-Ma’mur is a place of circumambulation for angels who are the inhabitants of the skies. 70.000 angels visit and perform circumambulation around it every day and once one of them performs circumambulation, he has got no more turns to perform circumambulation again until the Day of Judgment. And Baytullah is primarily the place of circumambulation for human beings, the inhabitants of the Earth.

Adam built the Kaaba with the help of angels after he was sent down unto the Earth. The Kaaba built by Adam endured till the Flood of Noah, having been repaired by Adam’s sons from time to time. The Kaaba was destroyed with the Flood without a trace and finally, it was revealed by Prophet Abraham, with the revelation from Allah and rebuilt. [67]

It is certain and determined by the statement of the Quran that the Kaaba is the first place of worship on the Earth and that it was built by Prophet Abraham. For this reason, some say that he was Prophet Abraham who first built the Kaaba. The verse is appropriate to deduce this meaning. However, there are many narrations saying that it was first built by Adam with the help of angels, though being weak.

A trusted narration saying that there is a forty-year of period of time between the building time of the first place of worship on the Earth, that is the Kaaba, and the second one, Masjid al-Aqsa, [68] supports those weak narrations.

According to those who accept that the Kaaba was built by Adam before, Abraham is the one who built the Kaaba for the first time after the Flood of Noah.

 

ADAM’S DEATH

 

Adam, the first human being and the first prophet, was also the first prophet to pass away from this world, after having lived for a thousand years.

His sons buried Adam in the mountain of Abu Qubays. Eve died two years after him. They buried her next to him. [69]

According to narrations, when the time of death came for Adam, he said to Allah: “O Lord! My enemy, Iblis, will be happy and mock at me if he sees me dying, for he is going to live till the Day of Judgment.” And Allah said to him in response: “O Adam! You are going to enter Heaven again. However, he is going to stay on the Earth and feel the agony of death as many times as the number of people to come until the Day of Judgment and he is eventually going to die in misery. His death has been postponed for this reason.”

Hearing this, Adam asks Allah to tell him how Iblis is going to experience death. Allah begins to tell him; however, Adam cannot bear it anymore and says: O Lord! That is enough! Then he dies in peace. [70]

 

FIRST FUNERAL PRAYER

 

The first funeral prayer on the earth was performed for Prophet Adam. As narrated from Ubay bin Ka’b, while waiting for death in his bed, Prophet Adam said: “My sons! I wish to eat the fruits of Heaven, I long for it.” His sons went to look for them to fetch their father. They came across angels. Angels had shroud, scent, a pickaxe and spade for Adam with them. Angels said: O the sons of Adam! Where are you going and what are you looking for? They said: Our father is sick. He wishes to eat fruits of Heaven; he sent us to pick them.”

The sons of Adam returned with angels. They came near Adam.

Angels took Adam’s soul away.

Then they washed and enshrouded him. They put scent on him and dug his grave. One of the angels stepped forward and other angels stood behind him. And the sons of Adam also stood behind them. They performed the funeral prayer. Angels went down into the grave and placed Adam therein. They covered the grave with mud-brick. They stood on the grave and then said: “O sons of Adam! This is exactly what you should do for your dead people.” [71]

 

WISDOM BEHIND THE LONGFLIFE OF ANCIENT PEOPLE

 

There are some reasons and wisdoms behind the fact that Adam and other first people lived very long. They are as follows:

1-  The living conditions of the time when humankind settled down on the Earth and began to reproduce were very different from those of today. The climate of the earth was very different. The earth was untouched. People of that day were having a harsh struggle against nature. Their facilities in this struggle were quite limited. It can be said that they had nothing but just physical power in their struggle against wild nature. For this reason, the people of that time were relatively taller and larger than people of today. They were feeding on natural foods. Their foods were simple and basic things. The air they breathed in was not polluted; it was without microbes, without poison and it was all clean. All physical conditions to live long, to stay fit and healthy were available.

If we consider that there are people who live up to 150 years of age in nature although the lifetime of people today is about 60-70 years, we can understand to some extent the effect of the nature on the lifespan of human beings.

2- Another reason why ancient human beings lived long is the obligation of reproduction. Building cities on the Earth, establishing states and civilizations were possible for human beings only if they lived long. For this reason, Allah made their life spans long.

3- Technological facilities of today have turned the whole world into a global village. Things, which used to be achieved at the end of long and challenging efforts centuries ago, are achieved in quite a short time now. For instance, travels which lasted for months in the past are completed in a few hours today. Mountains which were thought to be insurmountable are surmounted today and the destinations which seemed inaccessible are accessed easily. It is possible to communicate with the whole world at the same time. People of today may live shorter in terms of years yet in terms of benefiting from the earth, they live a life equal to a life of hundreds of years. People of today are able to do more things in their short lives than ancient people who lived such long years.

4- Allah made people responsible for worshipping as much as they live. He endowed the great amount of thawabs, which ancient people earned by worshipping throughout their long lives, also upon people of today who have got short lives. Allah made this in order to increase the amount of thawabs earned through worships so that there would be equality and justice between the worships performed throughout a long life and a short life.

 

THE TWO SONS OF ADAM: ABEL AND CAIN

 

Eve gave birth to two sons one after another named Abel and Cain. [72] Abel was one year younger than Cain.

Years passed and the two sons of Adam grew up. They were old enough to help their father with work. Although Abel was younger than Cain, he was stronger that his elder brother, Cain. However, he was also relatively soft-hearted, mild and merciful. And Cain, on the other hand, was sassy, aggressive and hateful.

Adam divided the jobs between his two sons. Cain did the farming and Abel herded the sheep and cattle, which he liked a lot.

They left their caves before the Sunrise and Cain went to pick fruits from trees and plant seeds or harvest; and Abel went to herd the animals. And Adam obtained food for the family by hunting.

Some more time passed by. Abel and Cain grew into two young strong men. Now it was time for them to marry.

As we stated before, Adam and Eve had twins in every birth, one being boy and the other being girl. Twins could not marry each other but to their other sibling born before or after them.

Abel and Cain had sisters born at the same time with them, too. In this sense, Cain was going to marry Abel’s twin sister and Abel was going to marry Cain’s twin sister.

However, the girl whom Abel was going to marry, Aqlimah, was more beautiful than the one Cain was going to marry. And this evoked jealousy in Cain’s heart. He wanted to marry Aqlimah.

Adam explained to him that it was against Allah’s order; however, Cain opposed to his father saying, “It is not Allah’s order, it is your opinion” and persisted on his wish.

When Adam saw that his words and advice did not affect Cain, he left this matter to the decision of Allah. He wanted his sons to sacrifice to Allah. The one whose sacrifice would be accepted was going to marry Aqlimah.

Sacrifice is a gift offered to Allah in order to deserve His consent. The gifts offered to Allah used to be placed on the top of a mountain. If Allah was pleased with the sacrifice, He would send a fire like lightning from the sky and have that sacrifice burnt. If He did not accept the sacrifice, it would stay untouched by fire; and the face of the one who made that sacrifice would become dark.

As he was a herdsman, Abel chose the fattest one of the sheep he herded and sacrificed it. He put it on the top of a mountain. As Cain was a farmer, he put some fruits and vegetables in a basket and put them next to Abel’s sacrifice.

The following day, they climbed the top of the mountain with their father to see whose sacrifice was accepted. There were only ashes where Abel’s sacrifice stood yesterday. And Cain’s sacrifice was still there as yesterday. It meant Cain’s wish to marry Aqlimah was refused by Allah.

 

CAIN THREATENS ABEL

 

While Abel was happy because his sacrifice was accepted and he was giving thanks to Allah, Cain was writhing in anger and jealousy and he was complaining to his father by saying:

- “Allah accepted Abel’s sacrifice because you supplicated for him. You did not supplicate for me. You do not love me. You always side with Abel…”

And Adam was trying to calm him down and telling him to show contentment with Allah’s decision.

This event increased Cain’s hatred and jealousy for Abel and doubled his anger. Therefore, it was an unmissable opportunity for Satan. He went up to Cain right away and began to whisper that demonic idea to his ear:

- “Why are you still waiting? Kill your brother. Get rid of him…”

Cain tried to shrug off this idea at first. However, he was finally taken in by Satan’s seduction and the agitation of hatred and jealousy he felt inside. He gradually adopted the idea of killing his brother. He started to wait for the most convenient time.

Finally, one day, he found the opportunity he had been waiting for. He saw Abel alone on the top of a mountain. He rushed toward him. In anger and hatred, he said to him:

- “Say your last prayer! I am going to kill you!”

Abel was surprised. He was looking at his elder brother with surprised, wide-open eyes:

- “Why are you going to kill me?” asked he. “What wrong did I do to you?”

Cain answered, gritting his teeth:

- “What else could you do? Father loves you more than me. He supplicates for you. And Allah accepted your sacrifice…”

Abel said, in a soft voice:

- “Killing me will not change anything. Besides, if you kill me, you will lose father’s love permanently. You will face Allah’s wrath and curse. You will go to Hell.”

But Cain would not relent; he could not silence the hatred inside him. He shouted out at his brother:

- “I will not relax, I will not find peace if I do not kill you; do you understand?” Abel answered in a soft voice again:

“Brother! You will never find peace by killing me. Fear Allah and be contented with His decision. And know that I will not beat you although I am stronger than you because I fear Allah, the Lord of the Universe.” [73]

Abel stepped back slowly after saying those words. He went away from his brother. Cain was standing there as if he had been frozen. He was repeating to himself: “I am going to kill him.”

 

FIRST BROTHER BLOOD SHED

 

Cain could not sleep all through that night till the next morning. Satan was repeating that demonic suggestion to him:

- “You will not find peace on the Earth unless you kill your brother.”

He had made up his decision by the time morning broke. He was going to kill his brother definitely this time.

Abel was gone with his sheep and herding them in the grasslands early in the morning. He seemed calm and joyous, which made Cain even angrier.

He picked up a large stone from the ground and silently approached his brother from his back. He wanted to trap him while he was unaware. He jumped onto him suddenly and started to beat his head with the stone. He beat, beat and beat… He beat on and on until Abel fell down onto the ground lifeless. Everywhere was in blood. So, the first murder on the Earth was committed and the first human blood was shed on the ground. This first blood dropped on the ground would not stop at all. Cruel people who have got a character like that of Cain’s would continue to shed the blood of innocent people like Abel until the Day of Judgment. This horrible movement was started by Cain, the brother murderer.

In a hadith, the Prophet (pbuh) emphasized the greatness of Cain’s sin and cruelty [75] by saying: “More sin is added to the sins of the first son of our father Adam with every human being cruelly murdered because he is the pioneer of those who made murdering a tradition.” [74]

Strangely enough, the first fight on the Earth took place because of a woman and the first murder was performed for a woman.

Cain was petrified in front of his brother’s bloody body. He pulled himself together after a while. He finally understood what a horrible and evil thing he had done. What happened to him like that? What did he gain by killing Abel?

He was filled with fear, grief and sadness. He felt as if everything, living and non-living, was shouting out at him:

- “Murderer! Murderer!”

He jumped up in awe. Yet he could not stand and fell down by his brother’s body.

 

LESSON TAUGHT BY CROW

 

While Cain was pondering what he was going to do with his brother’s body, he saw a crow. There was a dead crow next to it. Cain started to watch what the crow was doing.

The crow was digging the ground with its claws and beak, trying to make a hole. When it finished digging up the hole, it put the dead crow into the hole and covered it with earth again by using its claws and beak.

Cain watched all of it in astonishment.

He murmured to himself:

- “Shame on me. I could not do what a crow did.” He started to dig a hole right away. After the hole was done, he dragged the body and put it in the hole. He covered it with earth. [76]

Now that the body was hidden, he felt a bit relieved.

Meanwhile, Adam was looking for his sons, because they were late.

Cain saw his father approaching to him from a distance and suddenly he was frightened and nervous. He began running away. When Adam saw Cain running in fear, he was worried. It was obvious that something was wrong.

Soon he saw the blood on the ground and the newly covered hole. Then he understood what had happened. He started to shed tears. He shouted out, as loudly as he could, after his son, who was running:

- “Cain, what did you do to your brother?”

Adam’s voice was so loud that Cain thought that the whole world heard it. His fear increased. He went down the mountain and continued running away without looking behind.

Adam was still shouting after him:

- “Cain, never be in peace! You are a cursed, unwanted man from now on…”

This curse of Adam’s destroyed Cain’s life.

 

SOME LESSONS TO LEARN FROM THE STORY OF PROPHET ADAM

 


1. Exaltation of Humankind:

The story of Adam in the Quran clearly shows the value and preciousness of the humankind for Allah. No human ideology or philosophy and social school has ever reached the exaltation in terms of the value of the humankind mentioned in the Quran.

This exaltation of the humankind springs out from the fact that they were created as the vicegerents of the Earth. Allah prepared all means by which their vicegerency will be actualized and therefore, He taught them all names, that is to say all knowledge and information they need and the ways of comprehending things and knowing the truth. Another matter which indicates the exaltation of the humankind is that angels were ordered to prostrate before Adam in respect.

This respect attributed in the Quran to Adam is not for his self but for all the generations to come from him. It is stated clearly in the Quran with the verse, which is translated as:

“We have honored the sons of Adam; provided them with transport on land and sea; given them for sustenance things good and pure; and conferred on them special favors, above a great part of our creation.” [77]

Contrary to this exaltation of the humankind in the Quran, many modern western philosophies consider the humankind the most inferior and the most vulgar of all beings. Actually, according to J. P. Sartre, a human being is “a dirty worm and an inferior insect living in the trash of life.” And according to Nietzsche, a human being is “a monkey which God created as a toy in a long term of evolution.”

While the Quranic approach to human gives him a superiority and nobility, sublimity and honor; those philosophical approaches kill all the ideals in him and makes him the target of weapons of despair and pessimism.

2. Result of arrogance:

One of the most important lessons to learn from the story of Adam is that arrogance leads to devastation.

Actually, Satan was cursed and expelled from the mercy of Allah and from Heaven just because of his arrogance. Human beings should refrain from arrogance in order not to experience the same end with Satan. They should always be modest and humble.

3. Warning to protect ourselves from evils:

In the story of Adam, Allah tells about Satan’s enmity towards Adam and that he deceived him by making him eat the fruit of the forbidden tree, that he made him rebel against the Lord and that Adam and Eve were expelled from Heaven as a result of this.

All of these show that they are the demons (Satan and his army) that cause all the evil, mischief and devastation in the world.

A believer should always be alert against Satan’s tricks and delusions and whenever he feels an inclination towards evil, he should know that it is the seduction of Satan and should try to get rid of it by seeking refuge with Allah.

The safest way of being protected from Satan’s tricks is being a sincere servant to Allah. Satan himself confessed that he could not trick Allah’s sincere and true servants.

Another way of beating Satan and being safe from his attacks is repenting right after every fault and sin committed as a result of being deceived by Satan. Knowing and realizing one’s own fault is also a kind of repentance.

Repentance and regret make the inclination for goodness have victory over the inclination for evil. This destroys Satan, who is the encourager and seducer of evil, psychologically.

4. Jealousy is evil:

Jealousy is the first sin on the earth and in the skies, with which Allah was rebelled against. The one in the skies is the jealousy Satan felt for Adam and the one on the Earth was the one Cain felt for Abel.

 

ANECDOTES AND APHORISMS ABOUT ADAM

 

Abu Muhammad Marwazi says:
 

Satan was devastated only because of the following 5 facts:

1- He did not confess and admit his sin

2- He did not regret for his rebellion.

3- He never criticized himself.

4- He did not repent.

5- He lost his hope for Allah’s mercy.
 

And Adam found salvation thanks to the following 5 facts:

1- He confessed his sin.

2- He regretted for his sin.

3- He criticized himself.

4- He repented right away.

5- He always hoped for Allah’s mercy. [78]

 

***

Hasan al-Basri says:

“Allah ordered Adam to have 4 features and stated that all positive things come from these 4 features and said: “One of them is mine, the other one is yours, the third one is both mine and yours and the fourth one is yours and other people’s:

· First one: Do not attribute partners with Me in worship.

· Second one: Your deeds. I will give you the rewards for your deeds in your most difficult time.

· Third one: Supplicate to me and I will answer it.

· Fourth one: Treat people the way you want them to treat you. [79]

 

***

The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said:

“I am the one most like Adam amongst all people. And the one who is like me the most in terms of moral qualities and disposition amongst all people is Abraham.” [80]

According to a narration, Prophet Noah took a couple from all animal species and boarded them on his ark. One day he saw an old man on the ark. He could not recognize him and asked:

- Who are you? Who let you on the ark?

- I am Satan. I boarded on the ark to deceive your people, said the old man.

- Get off the ark, you evil! Noah said.

- I know five things, with which I deceive people. I will tell you three of them if you let me stay on the ark, said Satan.

Allah said to Noah:

- Leave those three things and let him teach you the other two things.

Upon this, Satan said:

- I lead people to devastation with these two things: jealousy and greed. Besides, I became the cursed Satan because of jealousy. As for greed, Allah made everything in Heaven available for Adam, yet He forbade one tree. And I deceived Adam using his greed and passion for that tree…” [81]

 

***

Prophet Moses asked in a supplication to Allah: “Lord, You created our father Adam with your own might and You endowed upon him this and that… How did he give thanks for all of them?” And Allah said in response: “By knowing that all of them have come from Me and by never forgetting it…” [82]

That is to say; comprehending that all blessings and boons come from Allah is a spiritual thanksgiving.

***

It is reported that once Prophet Adam said: “Allah endowed 4 superiorities and means of respectability to the followers of Muhammad (pbuh). He did not endow them even upon me:

1- He accepted my repentance only in Makkah; yet He accepts the repentance of Muhammad’s followers everywhere.

2- I was dressed; when I sinned, I became naked. The followers of Muhammad disobey while they are naked and Allah dresses them up.

3- When I wronged, Allah made my relationship with my wife break off. Yet, He does not do that the same thing to the followers of Muhammad. They disobey yet He does not make their relationship with their wives break off.

4- I committed a fault in Heaven and He expelled me. However, the followers of Muhammad make faults outside Heaven and when they repent, He takes them into Heaven. [83]

 

***

Awn bin Abdullah went up to Fadhl bin Muhallab. At that time, Fadhl was the governor of the city called Wasit. Awn said to Fadhl:

- I would like to give you advice.

- Go ahead, said Fadhl.

- Do not be arrogant, because the first rebellion to Allah was because of arrogance. “We said to the angels: "Bow down to Adam" and they bowed down. Not so Iblis: he refused and was haughty: he was of those who reject Faith.” (al-Baqarah, 34)

- Do not be greedy, because it was greed which took Adam out of Heaven where Allah had placed him. He ate the fruit of the tree which Allah forbade and thus he was expelled from Heaven.

- Do not be jealous, because Cain murdered Abel due to his jealousy. [84]

***

Qalshandani says:

“It is reported that the one who invented all kinds of writing was Adam. He wrote them all on the earth ground and baked them on fire. This was 300 years before he died. When the Flood of Noah occurred on the Earth, every tribe chose its writing.”

“And it is also said that all kinds of writing were sent down to Adam written on 21 pages.” [85]

Hasan al-Basri says: “Before Adam made that well-known mistake, his deeds were behind him and his death was before him. After that mistake, it changed. He took his deeds before him and his death behind him.” [86]

***

In a hadith, the Prophet said:

“Allah the Supreme taught Adam a thousand arts and craftworks and said to him:

“O Adam, tell your children to learn these craftworks and arts and to earn their livelihood by them. However,, they should not try to earn their livelihood using their religion…” [87]

***

According to what is narrated from Abu Huraira, the Prophet (pbuh) said:

“Allah created Adam in a beautiful human form, making him 60 zira’ (1 zira’ equals to 75-90 cm) tall. Since Adam is the ancestor of the humankind, everyone will enter Heaven in the beautiful form of Adam. People coming after Adam had been decreasing in stature since Adam’s creation. This decrease ended with the people of Muhammad.”  [88]

According to Ibn-i Haldun and Farid Wajdi, Adam was 60 zira’ tall in Heaven. He was given a normal height, which is appropriate for earthly conditions when he was sent down unto the Earth with Eve.

In another narration of this hadith, the following is stated, “Allah created Adam in His own figure.” In another narration, the following is stated, “Allah created man in the figure of Rahman.” How Adam, and therefore human beings, was created in the figure of Rahman is explained as follows:

“One aim of the above-mentioned Hadith is as follows: “Man is in a form showing the Divine Name of All-Merciful in its entirety.” For sure, as we explained before, just as the Divine Name of All-Merciful is manifest through the rays of a thousand and one Names on the face of the universe, and is apparent through the innumerable manifestations of Allah’s absolute dominicality on the face of the earth, so also is the complete manifestation of the Name All-Merciful apparent in a small measure in man’s comprehensive form, like on the face of the earth and the face of the universe. A further indication is this: the evidences to the Necessarily Existent One of places of manifestation like animate creatures and man, who are proofs of and mirrors to the All-Merciful and Compassionate One, are so certain, clear, and obvious that just as it may be said of a shining mirror which reflects the image of the sun: “That mirror is the sun,” indicating to the clarity of its brilliance and evidence, so also it has been said and may be said: “Man is in the form of the All-Merciful One,” indicating to the clearness of his evidence and completeness of his connection. It is as a consequence of this mystery that the more moderate of those who believed in ‘the unity of existence’ said: “There is no existent but He,” as a way of expressing the clarity of this evidence and perfection of connection.” [89]

 

Footnotes

1 Ibn Kathir, the Interpretation of the Quran, I. 70; The Signs of Miraculousness, 250.

2 adh-Dha­ri­yyat, 56.

3 ibid.

4 Sa’d, 71.

5 al-Baqa­rah, 30.

6 Sa’d, 72.

7 According to the statement by the interpreters of the Quran, angels obtained this information via these three ways:

a) This information was given to angels by Allah.

b) Angels deduced it by looking at the disposition of human beings. Actually, human beings had feelings such as anger and lust like demons. And these potentials of theirs were not naturally restricted. It was obvious that mischief would come out when lustful potential exceeded its limits and that there would be cruelty and killing when the potential of anger exceeded its limits.

c) Angels obtained this information by reading the great book of fate, that is Lawh al-Mahfuz, in which everything that happened and that is going to happen is written.

(See. Hu­sayn Jis­ri, Ri­sa­la al-Ha­mi­di­ya, 581-582; The Signs of Miraculousness, 251)

8 al- Ba­qa­rah, 30.

9 al-Ba­qa­rah, 30; The Signs of Miraculousness, 249.

10 For information on this matter, see: Mehmet Dikmen, İs­lâm İl­mi­ha­li.

11 Abu Da­wud, H. No: 4693.

12 Ih­ya, IV, 502.

13 The Flashes, 183.

14 al-Ba­qa­rah, 31.

15 al-Ba­qa­rah, 32.

16 al-Ba­qa­rah, 33.

17 Afif Ab­dul­fat­tah Tab­ba­ra, Prophets and Our Prophet in the Quran, 36.

18 al-Ba­qa­rah, 34; al-A’raf, 11; Ta ­ha, 116; al-Kahf, 50; al-Is­ra; 61.

(*) Some eminent Quran interpreters, primarily Baydawi, claim that prostration performed before Adam was a prostration of worship. In this sense, the one who was prostrated before was indeed Allah, yet Adam was made the qiblah for this prostration. (see; Baydawi, I, 140-140)

(**) Iblis is a proper name which is not Arabic. According to Abu Ubayda, Iblis is a word derived from Iblas, which means being away from good and losing one’s hope for Allah’s mercy.

19 It is stated in the Quranic verse that Iblis was created from “nar as-samum” which means a fire without smoke, which is so hot. (al-Hijr,  27; M Veh­bi, Hü­lâ­sa, VII, 2743-44).

20 al-Kahf, 50.

21 al-Ba­qa­rah, 34.

22 Hak Di­ni Kur’an Di­li, III, 2131.

23 Sa’d, 75; al-A’raf, 12.

24 Hak Di­ni Kur’an Di­li, III, 2132-33.

25 Mes­nevi-i Nu­ri­ye, 119-120.

26 The Words, 281, 299.

27 al-A’raf, 13.

28 Hak Di­ni Kur’an Di­li, III, 2134.

29 al-A’raf 14.

30 al-A’raf, 15.

31 al-A’raf, 16-17; al-Is­ra’, 62.

32 Mus­lim trnsl., 8, 80.

33 al-A’raf, 18; al-Is­ra’, 63.

34 an-Ni­sa, I.

35 Bu­kha­ri, IV, 145. There are some biological and genetic wisdoms behind the fact that Eve was created from the rib of Adam. See:  Dr.  Ha­lûk  Nur­ba­ki, Kur’ân-ı Ke­rîm’den Âyet­ler ve İl­mî Ger­çek­ler, IV, 64-65.

36 al-Ba­kqa­rah, 35; H.Jis­ri, ibid., 602.

37 Ta ­ha, 117-119

38 Taj­rid (translation), IX, 76-77.

39 Islamic scholars had conflicts about the true essence of this tree. Some said it was wheat, some said it was pig tree, some said it was apple tree and even some said it was a tree of affection.

40 al-A’raf, 19; al-Ba­qa­rah, 35.

41 The word “uskun” in the 33rd verse of chapter al-Baqarah, which was used for order for Adam and Eve to dwell in Heaven, is derived from the word “sukna” which means “to dwell, to stay.” According to this, the phrase “uskun al-Jannata” in the verse means “ dwell you in Heaven.” And this expression does not indicate that they are the owners of Heaven but being allowed to use it.

Actually, a person who was created as the vicegerent of the Earth should be called so. Otherwise, if he had been dwelled in Heaven permanently, his reason of creation would not be manifest. So, Adam, too, understood from these words of Allah that he would not be in Heaven eternally but for a certain time.

42 Mu­ham­med Ham­di Ya­zır, ibid., al-Baqarah, 33.

43 al-A’raf, 20; Ta ­ha, 120. What is meant by “being an angel” here is having some angelic characteristics such as being strong and living long, not being affected by tiring and grieving things.

44 al-A’raf, 21.

45 The Prophet said: “If it had not been for Eve, no woman would have learnt how to deceive their husbands.” (Buk­ha­ri. IV, 103).

46 The Words, 489... Badiuzzaman, in another work of his, explains that there is a desire and passion for eternity and eternal life in human disposition as follows: “Included in human nature is an intense love. Even, because of the power of imagination, man fancies a sort of immortality in everything he loves. Whenever he thinks of or sees their passing, he cries out from the depths of his being. All the lamentations at separation are interpretations of the weeping resulting from love of immortality. If there was no imagined immortality, there would be no love. It might even be said that a reason for the existence of the eternal realm and everlasting Paradise is the intense desire for immortality arising from that passionate love of immortality, and from the innate and general prayer for immortality. The Enduring One of Glory accepted man’s intense, unshakeable, innate desire and his powerful, effective, general prayer, for He created for transient man an eternal realm.” (The Flashes, 13).

47 al-A’raf, 23.

48 al-A’raf, 23.

49 al-Ba­qa­rah, 36; al-A’raf, 24.

50al-Ba­qa­rah, 36; al-A’raf, 24.

51 İs­lam An­sik­lo­pe­di­si, I, 134; Mus­lim trnsl., IV, 79-80.

52 İs­lam An­sik­lo­pe­di­si, I, 134; Mus­lim trnsl., IV, 79-80

53 H. Jis­ri, ibid., 616.

54 Ta ­ha, 117.

55 This belief influenced even Western philosophies. Christian Philosopher St. Augustine (A.C. 5th Century) pondered over the reason why the sin Adam and Eve committed would include all humans. (L. Öztabağ, Li­se III, Fel­se­fe Ders­le­ri, 12. ba­sım, 1963, İs­tan­bul).

56 Mus­lim, Sharh Na­wa­wi, IV, 141.

57 Mus­lim, IV, 2042; at-Taj, I, 37.

58 The Letters, 39.

59 al-A’raf, 27.

60 Kash­fu’l-Kha­fa.

61 H.Jis­ri, ibid, 611.

62 ibid., 612.

63 Tan­bi­hu’l-Mugh­tar­rin, 329.

64 H. Jis­ri, ibid., 624.

65 Ta­be­ri History, (translation)., I. 80.

66 Aal-i Im­ran, 33.

67 See: Abu’l-Wa­lid al-Az­raqki, History of Makkah and the Kaaba, 29-48.

68 Taj­rid (translation)., VI, 21.

69 İs­lam An­sik­lo­pe­di­si, I, 134, Adem Mad­de­si.

70 Mu­ham­med Ham­di Ya­zır, ibid, IV, 3062.

71 Ibn-i Sa’d, Ta­ba­qat, I, 33-34; Ah­med bin Han­bal, Mus­nad, 5., 136.

72 Taj­rid trnsl., IX, 84.

73 al-Ma­idah, 27-29.

74 Taj­rid trnsl., IX, 83.

75 In a hadith, the Prophet stated the two ways of pioneering which will continue to influence and affect others separately: “Whoever pioneers a good practice is given thawab both for that deed and for the people who will take it an example for themselves till the end of time. And whoever pioneers an evil practice is given the sin both for that deed and for the people who will take it an example for themselves till the end of time.”

76 al-Ma­idah, 31.

77 al-Is­ra, 70.

78 Tan­bi­hu’l-Mugh­tar­rin, 63

79 Ih­ya trnsl., II, 491

80 Ih­ya trnsl, II, 899.

81 Ih­ya trnsl, III, 73.

82 Ih­ya, III.

83 Tan­bi­hu’l-Gha­fi­lin, 547.

84 Ih­ya trnsl, III. 423.

85 Qal­shan­da­ni, 3,7.

86 Ih­ya trnsl., IV, 814.

87 Tan­bi­hu’l-Mugh­tar­rin, 396, 397.

88 Taj­rid, IX, 77.

89 The Words, 12-13.

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09-03-2015 12:55:13