Surah Humaza

Surah Humaza

Surah Humaza (سورة الهمزة) or Lumaza (لمزة) as it is also known is one of the chapters of the 30th part of the Quran and is a warning to a person who finds faults in other and amasses wealth and also describes the fire of Hell.

The topics covered in this article are as follows:

Facts about Surah Humaza

Surah Humaza or Lumaza as it is also called is a warning to a person who finds faults in others and collects wealth. Such a person believes that his wealth will make him eternal and immortal; however, the verses disabuse him of this false notion and inform us that the fate of such a person is the fire of Hell from which there is no escape and it is a fire that burns not only the apparent form and body of man but also his inner spiritual aspect.

104 Surah no.

Juz’ 30 Place

Makki Makki/Madani

32 Order of revelation

9 No. of verses

33 No. of words

134 No. of letters


Arabic Text and Translation of Surah Humaza


بِسْمِ ٱللَّهِ ٱلرَّحْمَٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيم

In the name of Allah, the most compassionate, most merciful

وَيْلٌ لِّكُلِّ هُمَزَةٍ لُّمَزَةٍ ﴿1﴾

Woe to every scandal-monger and slanderer,

الَّذِي جَمَعَ مَالًا وَعَدَّدَهُ ﴿2﴾

Who amasses wealth and counts it over.

يَحْسَبُ أَنَّ مَالَهُ أَخْلَدَهُ ﴿3﴾

He supposes his wealth will make him immortal!

كَلَّا ۖ لَيُنبَذَنَّ فِي الْحُطَمَةِ ﴿4﴾

No indeed! He will surely be cast into the Crusher.

وَمَا أَدْرَاكَ مَا الْحُطَمَةُ ﴿5﴾

And what will show you what is the Crusher?

نَارُ اللَّـهِ الْمُوقَدَةُ ﴿6﴾

[It is] the fire of Allah, set ablaze,

الَّتِي تَطَّلِعُ عَلَى الْأَفْئِدَةِ ﴿7﴾

Which will overspread the hearts.

إِنَّهَا عَلَيْهِم مُّؤْصَدَةٌ ﴿8﴾

Indeed it will close in upon them

فِي عَمَدٍ مُّمَدَّدَةٍ ﴿9﴾

In outstretched columns. 1

Benefits of Reciting Surah Humaza

The Holy Prophet (peace be on him and his household) narrates that one who recites this chapter will be rewarded with ten good deeds for every person who scorned the Prophet and his companions.

In a narration from Ja‘far bin Muhammad al-Sadiq (peace be on him), it has been stated:

Whoever reads it in his optional prayers, it will ward off poverty from him, bringing him sustenance and protecting him against a tragic death. 2

Warnings in Surah Humaza

وَيْلٌ لِّكُلِّ هُمَزَةٍ لُّمَزَةٍ ﴿1﴾

Woe to every scandal-monger and slanderer,

الَّذِي جَمَعَ مَالًا وَعَدَّدَهُ ﴿2﴾

Who amasses wealth and counts it over.

‘Humaza’ (همزة) refers to someone who finds faults in another by gestures and his eyes and eyebrows; while ‘lumaza’ (لمزة) refers to finding fault through one’s words. 3

Counting and Amassing Wealth

The word wealth has been used in its indefinite form in Surah Humaza to indicate how base and insignificant it is; because no matter how much wealth a person amasses, it does not cure his pain. The only benefit he receives from wealth is the extent that he spends it for life’s necessities.

The word ‘adada’ (عددة) means to count. The person described in the first verse loves wealth so much and is so greedy in collecting it that he amasses wealth and continuously counts it and takes pleasure from its abundance. 4

A Groundless Idea

يَحْسَبُ أَنَّ مَالَهُ أَخْلَدَهُ ﴿3﴾

He supposes his wealth will make him immortal!

This verse indicates one’s complete reliance on wealth and money. According to Surah Lumaza, a rebellious person does not think much about the fact that this wealth will one be lost.

The reason why the past tense of the verb being immortal is used (even though it gives a meaning of the future tense) is to show that a material person considers the eternity of wealth and power to be certain and real. However, the verb ‘supposes’ in the verse indicates that this is a groundless thought and mere conjecture on his part. 5

Surah Humaza Refuting a False Idea

كَلَّا ۖ لَيُنبَذَنَّ فِي الْحُطَمَةِ ﴿4﴾

No indeed! He will surely be cast into the Crusher.

وَمَا أَدْرَاكَ مَا الْحُطَمَةُ ﴿5﴾

And what will show you what is the Crusher?

The two verses are refuting the false idea mentioned above, i.e. the idea that wealth would make one eternal. 6

The word ‘hutama’ (حطمة) used in the verse is one of the names of Hell and means to break. Since it is the verb form that gives the meaning of exaggeration the word means to crush.

The question asking what will show you what is the Crusher, is to show its greatness and how horrible it is. 7

The Fire of Hell as Described in Surah Humaza

نَارُ اللَّـهِ الْمُوقَدَةُ ﴿6﴾

[It is] the fire of Allah, set ablaze,

الَّتِي تَطَّلِعُ عَلَى الْأَفْئِدَةِ ﴿7﴾

Which will overspread the hearts.

إِنَّهَا عَلَيْهِم مُّؤْصَدَةٌ ﴿8﴾

Indeed it will close in upon them

فِي عَمَدٍ مُّمَدَّدَةٍ ﴿9﴾

In outstretched columns.

Burning Hearts and Bodies

The sentence ‘which will overspread the hearts’ could have either of the following meanings according to commentators:

  • It could mean that the fire of Hell burns people’s inner aspects as it burns their apparent bodies; in contrast to the fire of the world which only burns man’s apparent aspect.
  • Or it could mean that it encompasses the heart and its pain and sting reaches the hearts as well. 8

No Escape

The last two verses of Surah Lumaza explain the reason for the fire encompassing all the existence of the inhabitants which is that the doors of Hell are closed upon them.

The last verse is an emphasis of the hopelessness of the inhabitants of Hell from being able to leave it and is an announcement that they are trapped in it for eternity, i.e. the doors have been closed upon and to be extra certain that they will not open is that fact that columns have been drawn over them. 9

Summary of Surah Humaza

The chapter starts by warning a person who finds faults in others and amasses and collects wealth; such a person wrongly thinks that his wealth will make him eternal and immortal and the verses disabuse him of this idea. Surah Humaza then goes on to describe the fire of Hell and how there is no way to escape from it.


References

  1. Qarai translation
  2. Al-Islam
  3. Qaraati, M. Tafsir Nur. Commentary of Surah Humaza.
  4. Tabatabai, M. H. (1374 AP). Tafsir al-Mizan. (Transl. by Seyed Muhammad Baqir Musavi Hamedani). Jamiat al-Modarresin Publications. Vol. 20, pp. 615-616
  5. Qarashi, A. A. (1377). Tafsir-i Ahsan al-Hadith. Bethat Publications. Vol. 12, p. 352
  6. Qarashi, A. A. Ibid. p. 352
  7. Tabatabai, M. H. Ibid. p. 617
  8. Qarashi, A. A. Ibid.
  9. Tabarsi, F. (1377). Tafsir Jawami‘ al-Jame‘. Transl. by a group of translators. Astan Qods Razavi Publications. vol. 6, pp. 703-704

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