The term "Kausar" interpreted by Hadith compared to the Quran

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Heba E. Husseyn:

The meaning of the term "Kausar" given by Hadith appears to carry no evidence of compatibility when we read the Noble Quran.

The usual meaning of the term 'Kausar' would be abundance in English.  I am not sure if this is the Hadith of Bukhari or some other writer, the Hadith has explained the term "Kauser" appearing in Surah al-Kausar (Chapter 108 of the Glorious Quran) as a fount in Jannah.  I've read Surah Al-Kausar (Chapter 108 of the Quran) countless number of times, trying to follow every word of it.  From the context of this Surah, I don't see how or why anyone should presume that "kausar" is meant to be a fount in Jannah.  Surah Al-Kausar was revealed to the Prophet in reply to the taunts by the people of Qureysh who would often insult the Prophet because he had no sons.  Allah comforts the Prophet by saying that He has bestowed upon him abundance or plenty (apparently meaning plenty of blessings and good things) and it is his insulters who are insignificant and will not be remembered (without posterity). While Allah knows best, to a reader, quite clearly, the term 'kausar' in Surah 108 seems to carry the usual meaning of a common collective noun, not a proper noun.
1. Lo! We have given thee Abundance;
2. So pray unto thy Lord, and sacrifice.
3. Lo! it is thy insulter (and not thou) who is without posterity.
(Surah Al-Kausar 1-3)    

As per my recollection, there are four Springs mentioned in the Quran that will give refreshing drinks to the dwellers of Paradise .  These are:

Tasnim  (Surah 83:27)
Kafur   (Surah 76:5)
Zanjabil   (Surah 76:17)
Salsabil   (Surah76:18)

I am not aware of any references to the term 'Kausar' as a spring, stream or river anywhere in the Quran. 

Now, it's interesting to read the following interpretation given by the Imam Ahmad Reza Academy.  It briefly states 'Kausar' being a fount, but then goes on to explain the usual meaning of the term.  I find the rest of their interpretation very correct and an articulate elucidation of another remarkable prophecy of the Quran.  In order to show a formal & official acceptance of the Hadith perspective, they have mentioned the sentence "Al-Kausar is the name of a fountain in Jannah (Paradise)" though the rest of the commentary makes no references to Kausar being a fountain.  By the way, this is a Sunni organization.

QUOTE -----


1. O beloved! Undoubtedly, We have bestowed you abundance of good.
2. Therefore, offer Prayer to your Lord, and do the Sacrifice.
3. Undoubtedly, one who is your enemy, he is cut off from every good.

"Al-Kausar is the name of a fountain in Jannah (Paradise). Almighty Allah has given the Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) this fountain. Al-Kausar means "The Abundance". Surah al-Kausar tells us that Almighty Allah gave the  Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) good things in abundance and excellences to which there are no limit. This Surah tells us about our Nabi Muhammad's (salllal laahu alaihi wasallam) high status. Some leaders of the Quraish made fun of the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) when his young son, Hazrat Qasim (radi Allahu anhu), passed away saying that he no longer had any sons to carry on his name and that he would be forgotten after he passes away. Allah Ta'ala promises with this Surah that the memory of the Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) would continue forever and that all those who are his enemies will be forgotten.

It is true that all our Nabi Muhammad's (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) enemies have been forgotten. All their riches and sons have been forgotten. Today, millions of Muslims remember our Nabi Muhammad (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) in all parts of the world. They send blessings on him and his family millions of times each day. The enemies of Islam have been asked many times by Allah Ta'ala to get together and produce one Surah like this smallest Surah Kausar. They could not even produce a small Surah like this or change it.

This Surah 3 Ayahs, 10 words and 42 letters (harf)."


The Shiia perspective apparently goes totally off the track.  I quote a thread from Shiia Chat that will explain the extent of make belief ideas harbored in the hearts of many people for promoting personal iconic values. 

QUOTE ----

"Al-Kawthar is a river in paradise. The best river.  And it's reality is the essence of Ahlulbayt . Fatima  is al-kawthar. 

The surah was revealed related to annoucement of Fatima's  birth. So it was revealed in her honour implying she is al-kawthar.

The Quraysh taunted the Prophet (sawa) for not having a lineage.
But Allah (swt) granted him Kauthar (Abundance). How?
For the Prophet (saaw) declared, for all men, their descendants are from the sons,
but except for me my descendants are the children of Fatima .
Thus Fatima was made the cause of Abundance for the Prophet (saaw).
God willed that the Abundance of the most cherished servant (Muhammad),
be from a daughter (Fatima) and not from a son.

This Gift to Muhammad (his grandsons, the children of Fatima) was indeed Abundance,
for Hasan and Husain."


Some more Shiia / Sunni perspectives on the term 'Kausar' from the same source posted by a member.

QUOTE ----

"The reason for this assumption is the tradition which traditionists of the rank of Imam Ahmad, Muslim, Abu Daud, Nasai, Ibn Abi Shaibah, Ibn al-Mundhir, Ibn Marduyah, Baihaqi and others have related from Hadrat Anas bin Malik, saying: "The Holy Prophet was among us. In the meantime he dozed; then he raised his head, smiling, according to some traditions, the people asked what for he was smiling, according to others, he himself told them that a Surah had just been revealed to him. Then, with Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim, he recited Surah Al-Kauthar; then he asked the people whether they knew what Kauthar was. When they said that Allah and his Messenger had the best knowledge, he said; It is a river which my Lord has granted me in Paradise."

"But, in the first place, from this same Hadrat Anas, Imam Ahmad, Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Da'ud, Tirmidhi and Ibn Jarir have related the traditions which say that this river of Paradise (Al-Kauthar) had been shown to the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) on the occasion of the mi`raj (ascension) and everyone knows that mi`raj had taken place at Makkah before the hijrah."


Thus, the concept of interpreting "Kausar" as a fountain or river comes entirely from the Hadith.  Both Sunnis and Shiias have an equal role in this interpolation - Shias apparently a lot more in this particular one.  The Noble Quran gives no warrant for deducing such conclusions.   Surah Al-Kausar, which is brief and evidently non-metaphorical, carries a simple and direct meaning - that the Prophet (pbuh) has been given plentiful from Allah Almighty.  This could refer to worldly rewards as well as salvation / rewards in the Hereafter.  But to presume "Kausar" to be a fountain in Paradise would be too far-fetched for the human mind.

Only Allah knows best.   Allah-o-Alim.

Thoroughly interesting read.  I had thought of this many times too.  I also don't see any reason why the word 'Kausar' must be interpreted as a fountain.  It's English equivalent "Abundance" in Pickthall's translation written with a capital 'A' is to make it conform with the Hadith explanation.  However, as i've heard and read, he was pressured quite a bit by the authorities at Al-Azha (Egypt) for showing conformity with Hadith.  In the process, he had to make several revisions at their behest, otherwise they refused to okay his translations.  So I read. 

I'm also surprised by the mind boggling fabrications of the Shiias.  The Sunnis describe 'Kausar' as a fount in Paradise, while the Shiias link it to Fatima Zahra.  I never knew this.   

Moreover, the 4 Springs you stated have been so beautifully mentioned in the Quraan.

Thank you sister Heba, for this superb piece.  Take care :)  Salaams and Allah bless.

Heba E. Husseyn:
Thanks so much for your appreciation sis zeynab.  Yeah, u r right.  In this bit the Shiia fabrications have surpassed those of the Sunnis, though usually they're running neck & neck. 

I've taken a quick look at the article you posted on the publicaiton of Pickthall's English translation of the Quran at the Islamic Issues board.  It looks like a good and important read.  As soon as I get some more time, I'll go through it carefully, Insh'Allah. 

N. Truth Seeker:
Very useful post, sister Heba, and well written.  I too am not aware of 'Kausar' being referred to as a fount anywhere in the Quran, even though the names of other founts are mentioned as you stated.  It's very likely that there would be many more founts in Jannah as well with other names.  But we can't presume any name unless the Quran states it so. 

Btw - the Shiia story of linking the term 'kausar' to Fatima Zahra amazes me.  I'd never heard of this before.  It must be that member's personal view.  Even in the category of presumptions, this would be considered as one stretched a bit too much.

Here's the precise Hadith which is the source of this story with NO evidence from the Noble Quran for interpreting the term "kausar" as a river or stream in Paradise.

"It is related by Anas that the Apostle of God said: “While I was walking in Paradise I saw a [strange] river on either bank of which there were domes made of concave pearls. ‘What is it?’ I inquired from Gabriel. ‘It is the Kausar the Lord has given to you,’ Gabriel replied. I found that its soil was as fragrant as musk.” -Bukhari


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