Surah 103 Al-Asr

Introduction

The sura Al-Asr, is the 103rd chapter of the Qur’an, and is one of the shortest, consisting of only three verses. This sura encapsulates the essence of time and human responsibility, that of believers. It serves as a critical reminder of the fleeting nature of life and the eternal importance of faith, righteous actions and mutual encouragement toward truth and patience.

Interlinear Translation

English (Surah Al-Asr) Arabic (سورة العصر) transliteration
1. By time, وَالْعَصْرِ Wa al-‘asr.
2. Indeed, mankind is in loss, إِنَّ الْإِنسَانَ لَفِي خُسْرٍ Inna al-insana lafi khusr.
3. Except for those who have believed and done righteous deeds and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience. إِلَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالْحَقِّ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالصَّبْرِ Illa allatheena amanoo wa ‘amiloo as-salihati wa tawasaw bil-haqqi wa tawasaw bis-sabr.

Commentary

Surah Al-Asr’s powerful message revolves around the concept of time and the inevitable loss faced by humanity. The surah begins with an oath by time, emphasizing its importance and the urgency of human actions within it. The second verse starkly declares that all of humanity is in a state of loss, highlighting the inherent struggles and transience of worldly life.

However, the surah does not leave humanity in despair. The final verse provides a beacon of hope, outlining the path to salvation. It identifies four critical aspects: faith, righteous deeds, advocating truth, and patience. The emphasis on belief underscores the importance of a spiritual foundation in life, while righteous deeds reflect the practical application of this belief. The mutual encouragement towards truth and patience suggests a communal responsibility, where individuals are encouraged to support one another in their spiritual and moral endeavors.

The essence of Surah Al-Asr lies in its succinct yet profound message. It serves as a reminder of the value of every moment and the need for a purposeful existence. The surah urges individuals to use their time wisely, fostering faith, performing good deeds, and helping each other uphold the values of truth and patience. In its brevity, Surah Al-Asr captures the essential teachings of Islam, offering guidance and hope to all who reflect upon its verses.

 

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