SURAH 105 – AL-FIL
SURAH 106 – QURAISH
Quran Study Sessions – Session 15
Feb 9, 2020
Overview – Al-Fil
❑ This Surah is Makki.
❑It was revealed regarding an incident that happened before the birth of the
❑A king in Yemen named Abraha tried to create an alternative to the Kaabah
in his Kingdom. But he was not able to imitate the people's commitment to
the Kaabah, and his building was destroyed in a fire. Because of this, he
resolved to go to Makkah and destroy the Kaabah. With him he had around
10 elephants, something the Arabs were not used to. But, when he reached
Makkah and was about to destroy the Kaabah, his army was destroyed, and
Allah protected the Kaabah
❑This year was called the "Year of the Elephant" and the Prophet was born that
❑On his path to Makkah, twice the Arab tribes gathered to fight against Abraha
and his army and. They were not successful, and Abraha defeated them and
❑This was so Allah could elaborate the theme of this Surah: It was Allah who
helped you, not yourself nor your idols. So why worship other than the one
who protected you?
❑ "Do you not see how your Lord did
with the people of the elephant?"
❑ "Do you not see" is the starting of
this Surah because Allah is
referencing something well-known
to the Arabs. So, well known that it
is as if they saw it even if they were
not present at that time
❑ Allah uses "your Lord" instead of
just "Lord" or "their Lord" to bring
to light the fact that even after this
incident, the Quraish did not
worship Allah alone as their Lord.
Instead, when the Prophet called
them to one Lord, they rejected
❑ Abraha had one large elephant
that was more powerful than any
of the others which is why they
are referred to as "people of the
❑ He planned to use this
elephant to destroy the
❑"Did we not make their
plan go astray?"
❑The "plan" is the plan to
destroy the Kaabah, or
the plan to create an
alternative to it.
❑Allah made the plan
useless and threw it into
chaos by first destroying
his alternative Kaabah,
then by destroying his
army along with the
❑"And he sent upon them birds
❑The word "birds" is common
rather than proper. It is like
meaning "some birds"
❑This is to instill understanding
of God's power. He can send
any birds at any time. Or that he
has the smallest control over
the world that even the birds
listen to his commands.
❑Every stone that hit the
people destroyed them.
❑In the end, the dead people
looked like nothing except
❑This is how Allah dealt with
those who tried to destroy
his House of worship
completely so as to preserve
it for the coming message of
the Prophet (SAW).
❑Without the safety of the
Kaabah, the Prophet would
not have been able to give
the message as effectively.
Fourth and Fifth Verse
❑This Surah is a series of questions being asked:
❑Did you not see how your Lord dealt with the People of the Elephants?
❑Did He not put their plan into chaos?
❑Did he not send flocks of birds over them that threw rocks on them?
❑Did he not make them completely destroyed?
❑For every question, the Quraish would have to answer "yes" because they
themselves bragged about this to the Arabs.
❑But, Allah's point as the next Surah will elaborate is if "He" is protecting them,
why aren't the making Him their Lord and worshipping Him rather than the
Overview – Quraish
❑ This Surah is Makki.
❑Quraish is the name of the tribe of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW). This is the
tribe which resided in Makkah and took care of the Kaabah and fed the
pilgrims when they made pilgrimage to the Kaabah.
❑Quraish was descended from Ibrahim (AS) from his son Ismail (AS), and they
lived in Makkah except for an expulsion for some time since the time of
❑They made their living as traders, selling and buying spice, perfumes, etc. From
Yemen to Syria and vice versa. Yemen traded spices and perfumes with India.
This caused them to have access to things no other Arabs could enjoy from
fruits to silk.
❑It was revealed about this blessing the Quraish enjoyed both in their physical
safety and economic security, and Allah tells them to worship the one who
gave them those blessings rather than idols.
❑ What security or protection
does is it mean?
❑ Their security in terms of trade
where they are able to have
food and goods all year long.
❑ Or it is a direct continuation of
the previous Surah. "We made
them like eaten straw, for the
protection of Quraish," or "Did
you not see how your Lord
dealt with the People of the
elephant [...], for the protection
❑Allah mentions the economic
security of the Quraish.
❑They used to have trading partner
for the summer (Syria) and another
trading partner in the Winter
(Yemen). This is so they would not
have to withstand the extreme
weather of either place, and so they
would have plenty of goods to
❑This provided them with a lot of
economic security, and able to
access things no other Arabs could
access. This was because of Ibrahim
❑And [mention] when Abraham said, "My Lord,
make this a secure city and provide its people
with fruits - whoever of them believes in Allah
and the Last Day." [ Allah ] said. "And whoever
disbelieves - I will grant him enjoyment for a
little; then I will force him to the punishment
of the Fire, and wretched is the destination."
❑This is the main point of both
❑Quraish knew it was Allah who
protected them from Abraha and
gave them economic security since
it was Allah's House they were
❑So, Allah calls them to worship
Him alone as he alone defended
them and protected them.
❑Allah not only fed the people of
Makkah, but He fed them from
hunger meaning without their trade
routes and Allah's blessings, they
would be like other Arabs and would
be living from meal to mean in
❑Allah not only made them safe, He
made them safe from the constant
fear Arabs lived in. They had to fear
no raids on their city because all
Arabs considered it holy, and they had
to fear no raids on their caravans
since they were the keepers of the
Holy House and the Arabs respected
❑And He also made them safe from the
fear they had when they saw the army
of the Elephant, and Allah destroyed
the army to keep them safe.
Fourth and Fifth Verses
❑Allah is asking Quraish to worship
Him, the Lord of the House they
live around since who is the one
who fed them and protected them.
Fourth and Fifth Verses
❑This Surah is a continuation of the theme of the previous one in theme. In the
previous Surah, Allah mentioned how the Quraish was protected from the
army of the elephant when nothing else could stop them.
❑In this Surah, Allah adds to that and mentions the economic security the
Quraish have in their trade routes.
❑They combine to form the central message: "They should worship the Lord of
this House." Since he is the one who gave them this economic security and fed
them and gave them safety and protected them.
❑These Surahs are a call to Tawheed (or oneness) of worship since only one God