Wadi e Musa through my bus window: Middle East Educational tour

سُورَةُ طه

بِسمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحمَـنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

وَأَنَا ٱختَرتُكَ فَٱستَمِع لِمَا يُوحَى (١٣) إِنَّنِىٓ أَنَا ٱللَّهُ لَآ إِلَـهَ إِلَّآ أَنَا فَٱعبُدنِى وَأَقِمِ ٱلصَّلَوةَ لِذِرِىٓ (١٤) إِنَّ ٱلسَّاعَةَ ءَاتِيَةٌ أَكَادُ أُخفِيہَا لِتُجزَى كُلُّ نَفسِ بِمَا تَسعَى (١٥) فَلَا يَصُدَّنَّكَ عَنہَا مَن لَّا يُؤمِنُ بِہَا وَٱتَّبَعَ هَوَهُ فَتَردَى (١٦)

“I have chosen thee: listen then, to the inspiration (sent to thee). (13) “Verily I am Allah: there is no god but I: so serve thou Me, (only) and establish regular prayer for celebrating My praise. (14) “Verily the Hour is coming― My design is to keep it hidden― for every soul to receive its reward by the measure of its Endeavour. (15) “Therefore let not such as believe not therein but follow their own lusts, divert thee there from, lest thou perish!” (16)


Allah Subhanawataala is teaching Prophet Muhammad the etiquette of the Deen with the example of Moses (AS) as the Jews were followers of the message given to Moses (AS).

TAFSEER BY DR. FARHAT HASHMI (translated from Urdu)

In these ayahs Allah Subhanawataala reveals the pure form of his message to Moses (AS) in a vivid account of His conversation with Moses (AS) at the time when he bestowed Prophethood on him.

By recounting this episode Allah Subhanawataala is teaching Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and us the essential ingredients of learning Ilm of Deen:

  1. Listen: The first step to learning ilm is focused listening. In the womb the developing baby first learns to listen and much later learns to speak, Listen to what revelation Allah Subhanawataala is going to give Musa AS directly. We as Muslims have been commanded to listen to the Quran with focused attention and remain silent

Surah Az-Zumar 39: 18: Those who listen to the Word, and follow the best (meaning) in it: those are the ones whom Allah has guided, and those are the ones endued with understanding. (18)

“I have chosen you!” says Allah Subhanawataala

Surah Araaf 144: (Allah) said: “O Moses! I have chosen thee above (other) men, by the mission I (have Given thee) and the words I (have spoken to thee): take then the (revelation) Which I give thee, and be of those who give thanks.” (144)

2. Action: first act is to establish ibadah and the first act of that is  Salah to “remember me.” (Subhanawataala) This is how we need to prioritize our life and time.

Hadith: When RasoolAllah (pbuh) was asked what does Allah like best: He said “making Salah on time”

The entire reason to establish Salah is to remember Allah (Dhikri) because in this act each of our senses and every part of our body and brain is remembering Allah.

Thus in the Namaaz e Nabvi, we are taught how and where to place our mind, body and acts in Salah.

Allah Subhanawataala says (hadith) of you have forgotten to make Salah pray immediately when you remember.

The other explanation is that whenever you remember Allah go ahead and make Salah, just like you would call a loved one when you remembered him or her.

3. The Hour (The Day of Judgment): it is coming but I  (Subhanawataala) have hidden the exact time to give everyone equal opportunity to get what he or she has struggled for.

The other explanation is that I could have hidden the Hour completely and the Day of Judgment would come upon suddenly and everyone would be judged on what they had done in life, but Allah Subhanawataala has kept the Hour as a “Pop Quiz” thus leveling the playing field for everyone.

Thus telling everyone that The Day of Judgment is coming but the exact time is not known (Pop Quiz), so that we are preparing for it all the time.

4. BEWARE OF OBSTRUCTIONS: Thus do not allow those to obstruct your Prayer and remembrance and preparation for the Hour, who do not believe in or are unconcerned with Prayer and the Day of Judgment because they submit to their desires and intellectual inclinations (Hawa: Part of Nafs).

5. STERN WARNING: If you follow these people (unconcerned with Salah and the Day of Judgment) then you too will perish, (The word Tarda: shredded to trash)

What is the shape and action of the Salah and remembrance of the Jews are they following Moses (AS) message from Allah Subhanawataala?

The jewish children at the Western Wall (Wailing) of Al Aqsa doing an abbreviated form of wudu

Today many of us Muslims are also laid back about Salah, making it dispensable in the face of trivial social obligations of dunya(social dinner engagements, movie times, conference dinners etc)

The warning is stern for those of us who let go of our ibadah (Salah & remembrance”:

فَتَرۡدَى  Tarda! Which means Perish, shredded to “Raddi” an Urdu word for shredded trash.

End Tafseer

My comments:

During the Middle East educational tour, we drove through the Wadi Tuwa, Wadi Musa and stopped at the Wells of Musa. Nowhere else does it bring to life more vividly the assignment given to Musa (AS) and you experience the words of the Quran spring to life.

The unforgiving terrain of desert and hills, mountains and waterless hard rock is a physical challenge in itself.

The gradual ascent of Tareek ul Mulook, the Kings Highway fools you into ignoring the steep ascent

As I ascended the Tareeq al Mulook (the Kings Highway) I was not only struck by the hardiness of body and strength of Prophet Moses (as) and his brother Haroon (AS) but also his wife.

As I ascended into the mountains towards the valley that holds Petra (Ad or Thamud I am not sure which one) I, who had never in my life had altitude sickness, developed this terrible feeling of nausea, dizziness and a feeling that the many dead graves erected in the sides of the mountain were spinning around me.

The entrance to Petra; (Ad or Thamud) I feel the dead graves in the mountains slowly begin their spinning making me sick.

I realized my weakness and her (the wife of Moses (AS) strength. I would never make a strong wife for a Nabi;…………God chooses those who he knows can accomplish what has been given to them.

Prophet Muhammad pbuh last words :

As Salah! As Salah! As Salah!


  1. Whenever you remember Allah go ahead and make Salah, just like when you would call a loved one when you remembered him or her.

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