Al-Quran Surah 96. Al-Alaq, Ayah 10

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عَبْدًا إِذَا صَلَّىٰ


Asad : a servant [of God] from praying?5
Khattab :

a servant ˹of Ours˺ from praying?1

Malik : Our servant from offering Salah (prayer)?
Pickthall : A slave when he prayeth?
Yusuf Ali : A votary when he (turns) to pray?
Transliteration : AAabdan itha salla
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Asad   
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Asad 5 Lit., "who forbids a servant [of God] when he prays", implying an attempt at preventing. Since this seems to refer to praying in public, most of the classical commentators see in this passage (which was revealed at least a year later than the first five verses) an allusion to Abu Jahl, the Prophet's bitterest opponent in Mecca, who persistently tried to prevent Muhammad and his followers from praying before the Ka'bah. However, there is no doubt that the purport of the above passage goes far beyond any historical incident or situation inasmuch as it applies to all attempts, at all times, to deny to religion (symbolized in the term "praying") its legitimate function in the shaping of social life - attempts made either in the conviction that religion is every individual's "private affair" and, therefore, must not be allowed to "intrude" into the realm of social considerations, or, alternatively, in the pursuit of the illusion that man is above any need of metaphysical guidance.

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 Abu Jahl was a staunch leader of the Meccan opposition to Islam. There are many authentic stories of his abuse of the Prophet (ﷺ).

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