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Who are Harut and Marut?


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Author Topic: Who are Harut and Marut?  (Read 1504 times)
Heba E. Husseyn
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« on: October 21, 2010, 03:52:20 am »

 BismEm


Harut and Marut (هاروت وماروت‎)  are the names of two angels as mentioned in Verse 2:102 of Surah Al-Baqrah.  The term Babel is said to refer to Babylon, the ancient name for the land today known as Iraq. 

"And they followed that which the devils falsely related against the kingdom of Solomon. Solomon disbelieved not; but the devils disbelieved, teaching mankind magic and that which was revealed to the two angels in Babel, Harut and Marut. Nor did they (the two angels) teach it to anyone till they had said: We are only a temptation, therefore disbelieve not (in the guidance of Allah). And from these two (angles) people learn that by which they cause division between man and wife; but they injure thereby no-one save by Allah's leave. And they learn that which harmeth them and profiteth them not. And surely they do know that he who trafficketh therein will have no (happy) portion in the Hereafter; and surely evil is the price for which they sell their souls, if they but knew."  (2:102)

Opinions differ regarding the interpretation of this verse.  The commonest view is: after Prophet Moses, obviously during the time of Prophet Solomon, when the Israelite nation was again going astray and slavery getting rampant, Allah Almighty sent these two angels to test the Jews.  The two angels were sent to work magic and sorcery in order to watch whether or not the people follow them, and thus, to test their faith.  While these angels did their magical wonders, at the same time they also warned the people that their presence and actions were a temptation for the people, designed to test them.  Harut and Marut warned the people not to follow their magical displays as that would harm them in the Hereafter.  But despite the warning given to them by these two angels, the people paid no heed and continued with the practices of talismans and magicians.

By reading Verse 2:102, we presume that the most widespread or popular magic was of a type which created differences between married couples and subsequently broke up their marriage.  Some tafsirs interpret this magic being done for the purpose of separating the husband and wife and therefore being able to seduce the wife after she leaves her husband.  Indeed, this evil practice made this community sink into depravity.

While only Allah knows best, many interpreters have thought that it's possible the two angels came down in human form.   The website Tafheem-ul-Quran (tafsir of the Quran) by Maududi writes, "It should not surprise anyone that angels came down to earth in human form; angels are dutiful servants of God's kingdom, and are capable of assuming the form appropriate to the specific task they are required to perform at any particular time. Who knows how many angels may be busy performing their duties in our midst even today!"  Certainly this explanation makes plenty of sense.  However, the actual truthful details are known to Allah Almighty only. 

It should also be known that these two angels were sent at the command of Allah.  Angels are the obedient slaves of Allah and act only at the command of Allah Almighty.  Thus, these angels had nothing to do with performing magic.  They were only testing the people as they were ordered to do so by Allah.   

Also, as clearly mentioned in the above verse, neither did Prophet Solomon ever indulge in such Haram practices involving magic or sorcery.  Instead, it was the wrong doing people who falsely put this accusation on the kingdom of Solomon. 

The term "devils" refers to those people who disbelieved in Allah and indulged in Haram acts.
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Zeynab
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« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2010, 12:03:43 pm »


Yes, this is the most widely accepted interpretation and it's definitely the only correct one.   Actually, almost all interpretations tally with this. 

Only a few isolated ones like the one by the Qadiani group and the one by the Free Minders are different and senseless, as usual.  Although Verse 2:102 very clearly confirms that Harut and Marut are 2 angels, yet the Qadianis claim that they are not angels but pious men of the Jewish community.  Another unknown group, it's name is not mentioned in Wikipedia (this could be Free Minds or a similar rogue group) goes to the extent of misiterpreting by claiming that Harut and Marut were not angels, they were not even pious men, but they were real sorcerers who misguided people .. exactly the opposite of every information given in Verse 2:102.   The Qadiani view is borrowed from the altered Bible story of Cyrus and his conquest of Babylon.  According to this  fictional tale in the altered Old Testament, Harut and Marut were two people who helped Cyrus to conquer Babylon, and then Cyrus rewarded them by allowing the Jews to return to their homeland.   All rubbish stories.    This tale comes from the Old Testament book of II Chronicles (36:22-23) and the Qadiani group has picked it up from there.

Many thanks for your very articulate and well-studied explanation, sister Heba. 
 
 
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« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2010, 12:24:15 pm »



JazekAllah khair sister Heba.   This piece is a much needed one.  As sister Zeynab put it, your analysis tallies with almost all explanations and tafsirs of this Verse.  And as she already gave the details, there are a couple rogue groups who have come up with completely absurd opinions.  Additionally, there's one orientalist, named David Margoliouth, who has also tried to interpret Verse 2:102 from information taken from the altered Bible (New Testament, 2 Timothy) which is so stupid that it really sounds like an ill conceived childish joke.   Margoliouth claims that Harut and Marut were two of the Egyptian magicians named "Jannes" and "Jambres" who tried to challenge Prophet Moses in Pharoah's court.  This is the kind of nonsensical interpretation one would expect only from a raving lunatic!   Moses was said to be born in approximately 1393 BC and the approximate birth year of Solomon was 1011 BC - a difference of almost 400 years!   Margoliouth must have been high on dope when he expressed his opinion.   Also note, "Jannes" and "Jambres" are totally fictitious and concocted names, as is a common practice in the man-written Old & New Testaments.  The names of none of the persons attached to Pharoah's court is confirmed nor even recorded as a part of authentic historical data.

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Zeynab
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« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2010, 09:18:03 am »



OMG!  how can anyone be so silly?  What makes Margoliouth  think "Jannes" and "Jambres" to be Harut and Marut?   Is this nonsense mentioned in the altered bible or is it Margoliouth's opinion? 
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« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2015, 07:12:45 am »



Yes Sister, I'm pretty sure it's from the altered bibles.   
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Ruhi_Rose
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« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2019, 02:15:44 am »



Very helpful commentary of Verse 2:102.   Also thanks for letting me know the yap-yap rumors people pick from extra-Quranic sources to misinterpret this Verse.

Last week in a family Iftar get-together at my place we were seriously discussing this Verse, trying to understand it.  I couldn't recall that we had this topic at our MV so I said I won't say anything at the moment, look for this topic at MV and then Insh'Allah send everyone the link to this thread via email.  Alhumdulilah my search code brought me right her, so I sent it to them yesterday.  Everyone welcomed the tafsir and found it useful and informative.


   
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Heba E. Husseyn
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« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2019, 02:23:00 am »



You're welcome sister Ruhi.  I'm glad your folks found this thread worthwhile.  Shukr Alhumdulilah.
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