I was reading the translation of Surah Al-Faatihah in the articles section on your website and found something that is always a subject of debate among the Muslim scholars. In the translation of “Maghdoob-e-Alaihim“ and “Daalleen“ you wrote following footnotes:
The Qur’an tells us that the Jews (Yahood) became deserving of God’s wrath due to their disobedience and transgressions. See, for instance, Al-Baqarah 2: 61.
The Qur’an tells us that the Christians (Nasara) lost God’s guidance and thus went astray due to their self-imposed additions to the corpus of God’s guidance. See, for instance, Al-Maaidah 5: 77.
Some Scholars found this interpretation very misleading. They have an opinion that anybody (Muslim, Jews, Christian, Hindu, Atheist..) can fall under any of these two categories. In other words, “Maghdoob-e-Alaihim“ and “Daalleen“ are not specific to Jews and Christians.
I would appreciate if you can spare some time and throw some light on it.
May Allah showers His mercy upon you and those around you.
The referred notes on Surah Al-Baqarah are not to imply that the two groups comprise only of the Jews and the Christians. These notes are primarily to explain the difference in the connotation of the two terms “Al-Maghdhoob `Alaihim“ and “Al-Dhaalleen“. Thus, it is to show that an attitude of disobedience and transgression (which was adopted by the Israelites) renders a people deserving of God’s wrath (i.e. Al-Maghdhoob `Alaihim), while self-imposed additions to the corpus of God’s guidance (which was the problem with the Nasara) leads a people astray (Al-Dhaalleen). In other words, any one (whether a Muslim, a Jew or a Christian etc.) who adopts an attitude of disobedience and transgression would be among the “Al-Maghdhoob `Alaihim“ on the Day of Judgment and any one who is guilty of self-imposed additions in the corpus of God’s guidance shall be grouped with the “Al-Dhaalleen“.
The fact that the Surah is actually a supplication to save us from the path of the “Al-Maghdhoob `Alaihim“ and the “Al-Dhaalleen“ clearly evidences the fact that a person (even a Muslim), due to his undesired attitude can still fall within these categories.
It may be of interest to note that from the point of view of the sequence of the Qur’an, after this supplication entailed in Surah Al-Fatihah, the Qur’an has immediately focused on explaining the mistakes which renders a group “Al-Maghdhoob `Alaihim“ or “Al-Dhalleen“. Thus, Surah Al-Baqarah, which deals primarily with the transgressions and the disobedience of the Israelites focuses on the explanation of the “Al-Maghdhoob `Alaihim“, while the next Surah (Aal Imraan), which deals primarily with the mistakes and the philosophical and scholastic additions of the Nasara, focuses on the explanation of the “Al-Dhaalleen“. The last two Surahs of the first group (Al-Nisaa and Al-Maaidah) explain the attitude necessary to earn God’s mercy and forgiveness. The obvious implication of this sequence is firstly to guide man to safeguard against the attitudes, which can ruin his potential of success and then to show him the path, which guarantees his eternal salvation.
Thus, even though I do agree with the opinion that any one (whichever creed he may ascribe to) who adopts the uncalled for attitude shall be grouped with the doomed on the Day of Judgment, yet, in my opinion, the two groups mentioned in Surah Al-Fatihah have been personified in the Qur’an as the Israelites and the Nasara, due to their respective attitudes toward the guidance of God. In this way, the Qur’an has also clarified the qualities, which render a people “Al-Maghdhoob `Alaihim“ and “Al-Dhaalleen“ in God’s reckoning.
October 10, 2000