Surah Taha

Surah Taha

Surah Taha is the 20th surah of the Quran that Allah revealed to Prophet Muhammad in the city of Mecca. The surah begins with the disjoined letters ṭā and hā, and therefore it is named Taha. According to narrations, Taha is one of the titles of the Prophet.1 In this article on Islam4u, the following topics will be discussed:

Facts about Surah Taha

Surah no.20
PlaceJuz’ 16 & 17
Makki/MadaniMakki
Order of revelation45
No. of verses135
No. of words 1177
No. of letters5093

Benefits of Reciting Surah Taha

  1. Receiving the reward of all of the Muhajirun and Ansar: According to the Prophet, whoever recites surah Taha will receive the reward of all the Muhajirun and Ansar on the Day of Judgment.2
  2. Acceptance of proposal of marriage: The Noble Prophet has been quoted as saying, “Whoever writes surah Taha, places it in a green cloth, and takes it with himself to a proposal of marriage ceremony, his proposal will be accepted.3
  3. Easy marriage: Abu Abdullah Ja‘far ibn Muhammad has said, “Those who do not have suitors or whose proposal of marriage is turned down should write surah Taha, then wash it with water, and pour that water on their face. In this way, Allah will ease their marriage.”4

The Gist of Surah Taha

Surah Taha has 135 verses and like all other Makki surahs, it mostly deals with the topic of the origin and resurrection of human beings. Surah Taha is the first surah that tells the story of Prophet Moses in detail, that is, more than 80 verses of it tell the story of Prophet Moses. A part of this surah is about the magnanimity of the Quran and the attributes of Allah. Moreover, this surah tells the story of Adam and Eve and how Satan tempted them to eat from the Forbidden Tree. In the end, the surah gives valuable and useful advice to the readers.

The Occasion of Revelation of a Few Verses

The first few verses and verse 131 of surah Taha have a specific occasion of revelation.

Moderation in Acts of Worship

According to narrations, after the descent of revelation and the Quran on the Prophet, his holiness would worship Allah very much and used to stand in prayer so long so that his feet would swell. For this reason, the first few verses of surah Taha were revealed to the Prophet and ordered him not to trouble himself so much with acts of worship and to be moderate in his prayer and supplication.

A Verse Consoling the Prophet

Verse 131 of surah Taha reads:

وَلَا تَمُدَّنَّ عَيْنَيْكَ إِلَىٰ مَا مَتَّعْنَا بِهِ أَزْوَاجًا مِّنْهُمْ زَهْرَةَ الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا لِنَفْتِنَهُمْ فِيهِ ۚ وَرِزْقُ رَبِّكَ خَيْرٌ وَأَبْقَىٰ ﴿١٣١

Do not extend your glance toward what We have provided certain groups of them as a glitter of the life of this world, so that We may test them thereby. The provision of your Lord is better and more lasting.6

As for the occasion of revelation of the above verse, it has been narrated from the servant of the Noble Prophet Abu Rāfi‘ (ابو رافع) that one day a guest came for the Prophet. His holiness told his servant to get some flour from a Jew on credit to make food. The Prophet said that he would give the money to him in the month of Rajab. However, the Jew said that he must leave something as a pledge if he wants flour. When the Prophet heard this, he said, if he would have given the flour instead of this shirt or armor, he would have given him gold. It was after this incident that the above verse was revealed to the Prophet consoling and comforting him.7

Famous Verses of Surah Taha

Several famous verses of surah Taha are verses 25-32:

قَالَ رَبِّ اشْرَحْ لِي صَدْرِي ﴿٢٥﴾ وَيَسِّرْ لِي أَمْرِي ﴿٢٦﴾ وَاحْلُلْ عُقْدَةً مِّن لِّسَانِي ﴿٢٧﴾ يَفْقَهُوا قَوْلِي ﴿٢٨﴾ وَاجْعَل لِّي وَزِيرًا مِّنْ أَهْلِي ﴿٢٩﴾ هَارُونَ أَخِي ﴿٣٠﴾ اشْدُدْ بِهِ أَزْرِي ﴿٣١﴾ وَأَشْرِكْهُ فِي أَمْرِي ﴿٣٢

He said, “O my Lord! Expand my heart, and make my task easy for me, and make my words plain [and expressive]; that they may understand my words, and appoint for me a successor from my family; Aaron, my brother. Help me with him, and make him my partner.8

This is the prayer of Prophet Moses before Allah sent him to the Pharaoh. Allah answers his prayer and grants all of his requests. Expand my heart means grant me endless patience so that I can perform my duty.

Verse 114 of Surah Taha

فَتَعَالَى اللَّهُ الْمَلِكُ الْحَقُّ ۗ وَلَا تَعْجَلْ بِالْقُرْآنِ مِن قَبْلِ أَن يُقْضَىٰ إِلَيْكَ وَحْيُهُ ۖ وَقُل رَّبِّ زِدْنِي عِلْمًا ﴿١١٤

So exalted is Allah, the True Sovereign. Do not hasten with the Quran before its revelation is completed for you, and say, ‘My Lord! Increase me in knowledge.’9

According to books of tafseer, when the angel Gabriel would descend on the Prophet to reveal the verses of the Quran to the Prophet, fearing that he might forget the verses and also due to his love for learning the Quran and for people to memorize it, the Prophet would quickly convey the verses of the Quran to people before Gabriel finished conveying the verses completely to him. As a result, Allah revealed the above verse to the Prophet, ordering him not to hasten with the Quran and allow the angel to completely convey the verses to him first. Then, the Prophet could have conveyed the divine messages to people.

Verse 124 of Surah Taha

وَمَنْ أَعْرَضَ عَن ذِكْرِي فَإِنَّ لَهُ مَعِيشَةً ضَنكًا وَنَحْشُرُهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ أَعْمَىٰ ﴿١٢٤

And whoever turns away from My remembrance, he will live in misery and We will resurrect him blind [on the Day of Judgment].

Having a miserable life is because of not believing in the Hereafter and life after death. Such people will think that their life ends with death and thus they are worried about the future. Allah says in this verse that those who turn away from His remembrance will live a wretched life and Allah will resurrect them blind on the Day of Judgment. On the other hand, those who have faith in Allah and put their trust in Him are immune to all of these worries.

Conclusion

Surah Taha is the twentieth surah of the Quran that Allah revealed to the Noble Prophet in Mecca. It begins with the disjoined letters ṭā and hā and that is why it is called surah Taha. Taha is also one of the titles of Prophet Muhammad according to exegetes because right after it, Allah addresses the Prophet directly, telling him that He did not reveal the Quran to trouble him. Surah Taha tells the story of Prophet Moses followed by the story of Adam and Eve. According to the Prophet, whoever recites surah Taha will receive the reward of all the Muhajirun and Ansar on Qiyamah.


References

  1. Cf. Ma‘ānī al-AKhbār, p. 22.
  2. Majma‘ al-Bayān, vol. 7, p. 5.
  3. Tafseer al-Burhān, vol. 3, p. 696.
  4. Ibid.
  5. Structure of the Surahs of the Quran, Nūr al-Thaqalayn Institute.
  6. Quran 20:131 (Qara’i).
  7. Asbāb Nuzūl al-Qur’ān, p. 312.
  8. Quran 20:25-32 (Foroutan).
  9. Quran 20:114 (Qara’i).

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Abu Mahdi
Abu Mahdi
I'm Abu Mahdi, one of the writers of this blog. I have a BA in English literature and an MA in English language teaching. I am also a teacher and reciter of the Quran in the field of reading the Quran, tajweed, and maqamat. Currently, we are working on a course for learning tajweed of the Quran here on Islam4u.

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