Muhammad Shafi Deobandi

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Muḥammad Shafī‘ ibn Muḥammad Yāsīn ‘Us̱mānī Deobandī (Urdu: محمد شفیع بن محمد ياسین عثمانی دیوبندی‎; Arabic: محمد شفيع بن محمد ياسين العثماني الديوبندي‎, Muḥammad Shafī‘ ibn Muḥammad Yāsīn al-‘Uthmānī ad-Diyūbandī; c. 25 January 1897 – 6 October 1976), often referred to as Mufti Muhammad Shafi, was a Pakistani Sunni Islamic scholar of the Deobandi school of Islamic thought. A Hanafi jurist and mufti, he was also an authority on shari'ah, hadith, tafsir (Qur'anic exegesis), and tasawwuf (Sufism). Born in Deoband, British India, he graduated in 1917 from Darul Uloom Deoband, where he later taught hadith and held the post of Chief Mufti. He resigned from the school in 1943 to devote his time to the Pakistan Movement. After the independence he moved to Pakistan, where he established Darul Uloom Karachi in 1951. Of his written works, his best-known is Ma'ariful Qur'an, a tafsir of the Qur'an.


  • The Israelites were thus being ungrateful and impertinent. Even otherwise, it was so usual with them not only to transgress divine commandments but also to deny them outright. They had also been slaying a number of prophets at different times - they knew they were committing a misdeed, but their hostility to the truth and their stubbornness in disobedience made them blind to the nature of their conduct and its consequences. Through such persistent and wilful misdemeanour they drew upon themselves the wrath of Allah. Disgrace and degradation settled upon them for ever. That is to say, they no longer had any respect in the eyes of others, nor magnanimity in themselves. One form of this disgrace is that temporal power has been taken away from them for ever. For only forty days, however, - and that too when the Day of Judgment will have come close - the Dajjal (Anti-Christ) belonging to the Jewish race, will have an irregular dominion like that of a robber. This cannot be described as having temporal power, in the proper sense of the term. Allah had made it quite clear to the Jews through Sayyidna Musa (Moses) that if they continued to be disobedient, they would always have to live under the domination of other nations. Says the Holy Qur'an: “And when your Lord proclaimed He would send forth against them, unto the Day of Resurrection, those who should visit them with evil chastisement.” (7:167) As to how the Companions, their successors and the great commentators have interpreted the disgrace and degradation which has settled on the Jews, let us present a summary in the words of Ibn Kathir: “No matter how wealthy they grow, they will always be despised by other people; whoever gets hold of them will humiliate them, and attach to them the emblems of servitude.” The commentator Dahhak Ibn Muzahim reports from the blessed Companion 'Abdullah Ibn 'Abbas that the Jews will always remain under the domination of others, will be paying taxes and tributes to them - that is to say, they will themselves never have power and authority in the real sense of the term. Another verse of the Holy Qur'an also speaks of the disgrace of the Jews, but with some addition: “And disgrace has been stamped over them wherever they are found, unless (saved) through a rope from Allah and through a rope from men.” (3:112)
    • Maulana Muhammad Shafi's commentary on sura (chapter) 2, verse 61 of the Quran, (reiterated at Quran 3:112) in Ma'ariful Qur'an.
  • Now, the “rope” or means from Allah refers to the case of those whom Allah Himself has, through His own commandment, saved from this disgrace - for example, children, women, or those who are totally devoted to prayer and worship and never go to war against Muslims. The “rope” or means from men refers to a treaty of peace with the Muslims, or a permission to live in a Muslim country on payment of the Jizyah (the tax levied on non-Muslims living in a Muslim country, which exonerates them from military service etc.) Since the Holy Qur'an uses the expression “from men” and not “from Muslims”, a third situation is also possible - the Jews may make political arrangements with other non-Muslims, live under their backing and protection, and thus be in “peace”. ... Thus, Verse 3:112 helps to elucidate Verse 2:61, and also dispels the doubt which sometimes arises in the minds of the Muslims at the sight of the so-called “Israeli state” imposed on Palestine. For, they find it difficult to reconcile the two things - the Holy Qur'an seems to indicate that the Jews will never have a sovereign state, while they have actually usurped Palestine and set up a state of their own. But if we go beyond the appearances, we can easily see that “Israel” is not an independent sovereign state, but only a stronghold of the Western powers which they have established in the midst of Muslim countries in order to protect their own interests; without the backing of these super-powers the Jewish “state” cannot survive for a month, and the Western powers themselves look upon the Israelis as their henchmen. The “Israeli state” has been living, as the Holy Qur'an says, “through a rope from men,” and, even at that, living as a parasite on the Western powers. So, there is no real occasion to have a misgiving about what the Holy Qur'an has said on the subject. Moreover, the half of Palestine which the Jews have usurped and the parasite state they have set up there is no more than a spot on the map of the world. As against this, we have vast expanses of the globe covered by Christian states, by Muslim states, and even by the states of people who do not believe in Allah at all. Can this tiny blot on the map and that too under the American-British umbrella, negate the disgrace which Allah has made to settle upon the Jews?
    • Maulana Muhammad Shafi's commentary on sura (chapter) 2, verse 61 of the Quran, (reiterated at Quran 3:112) in Ma'ariful Qur'an.

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