Meaning of 'Aathaaran' in verses 40:21 and 40:82
Fatwa No: 343462

  • Fatwa Date:5-1-2017 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 7, 1438
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Question

Assalaamu alaykum. I was wondering, what do 40:21 40:82 mean by 'impressions' does it mean 'left' or 'made' If Aathaaran in this verse means traces, then does it mean that those traces show that they were superior, or does it mean that those traces are still superior to your houses now, or does it mean that the traces of the houses were superior before the houses became rubble, or do these verses mean something else?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

You have asked so many questions about the same meaning, and there is no great benefit in investigating this matter. We do not know what your objective is from asking these questions about these two verses.

It is enough to clarify to you that impressions/traces [Aathaar] means what those people left behind, which proves how powerful they were.

As-Sa'di said in his Tafseer (exegesis) of Soorah Ghaafir [Quran 40], “They were stronger than them in number and equipment and had a big body structure. {…and in the traces in the land} such as buildings and plantations; the strength of the traces implies the strength of those who made them, and that they used to reinforce themselves with these traces.

The Quran also wants to demonstrate that these traces indicate that those people had buildings and a civilization which were very superior to that of the Quraysh and others who were addressed by this verse, like the verse in Soorah Ar-Room. Allah says (what means): {Have they not traveled through the earth and observed how was the end of those before them? They were greater than them in power, and they plowed the earth and built it up more than they have built it up, and their messengers came to them with clear evidences…} [Quran 30:9] These traces, regardless of whether they were buildings or otherwise, are evidence of the greatness of their original state.

The verse indicates that despite the fact that those people were superior in buildings and civilization, Allah destroyed them with His Might and Power; so those people should be admonished and stop their disbelief and disobedience so that they would not face the same punishment.

Allah knows best.

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