Wahy – divine inspiration and revelation
In Arabic, wahy means to inform secretly. In religious vocabulary, we use it to indicate that Allah – tells the one whom He has elected among His servants of what He wants to make known to Him in terms of guidance and knowledge, and this, in a secret way, unfamiliar to humans.
Thus, linguistic meaning includes inspiration due to the man’s natural disposition (fitrah). We find this in His Word – Exalted be He :
“And We inspired the mother of Moses [this]: ‘Breastfeed it'” And We inspired the mother of Musa (Moses), (saying): “Suckle him [Musa (Moses)], but when you fear for him, then cast him into the river and fear not, nor grieve. Verily! We shall bring him back to you, and shall make him one of (Our) Messengers.“. [28:7]
In the same way, does this meaning encompass the innate inspiration of animals, as in His Exalted Word Be It:
” And your Lord inspired the bee, saying: “Take you habitations in the mountains and the trees and in what they erect. ” [16:68]
The divine inspiration – or revelation – to the Prophets aims to inform them of the Divine Instructions. This is a similar phenomenon because its origin is the same, and its purpose is unique. Therefore, the revelation was defined as “Secret teaching from Allah for the Prophets peace be upon them.” Allah said:
” Verily, We have inspired you (O Muhammad SAW) as We inspired Nuh (Noah) and the Prophets after him; We (also) inspired Ibrahim (Abraham), Isma’il (Ishmael), Ishaque (Isaac), Ya’qub (Jacob), and Al-Asbat [the twelve sons of Ya’qub (Jacob)], ‘Iesa (Jesus), Ayub (Job), Yunus (Jonah), Harun (Aaron), and Sulaiman (Solomon), and to Dawud (David) We gave the Zabur (Psalms). And Messengers We have mentioned to you before, and Messengers We have not mentioned to you – and to Musa (Moses) Allah spoke directly. “[4:163-164]
The beginning of the revelation of the Quran
Al-Bukhârî reports, according to Aishah, may Allah agree with her, the revelation of the Quran as following:
The divine inspiration before the revelation of the Quran
“The beginning of the divine inspiration (wahy) to the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) was the truthful dreams during his sleep. Every time he had a dream, it obviously realized that He (pbuh) was attracted to the solitary retreat.
Then, He pbuh went to Mount Hirâ. It is where he devoted himself to the adoration during the nights and prepared for these retreats.
Later he returned to Khadijah’s house May Allah be pleased with her. She helped Him pbuh for another retreat until Truth surprised Him (pbuh) at Hirah.
The angel Jibril AS appeared to the Prophet (pbuh) and started the revelation of the Quran.
Then the angel appeared to Him saying: “Read” The Messenger of Allah PBUH said: “I answered him: I hardly read. Later, he grabbed me and held me tight enough to exhaust me and then released me and said: Read! Then I replied: I do not read much.
Afterward, he squeezed me a second time to the point of exhausting me and then released me and said: Read! So I say: I do not read much. So he squeezed me a third time to the point of exhausting me and then released me and said:
‘Read in the name of your Lord who created‘ until ‘what he does not know.’ “
The Prophet (pbuh) returned to his wife
Then the Messenger of Allah pbuh returned to his wife Khadijah and cried, “Wrap to me! Wrap to me!”
She hastened to keep Him wrapped until his terror was dispelled, then He said to Khadijah,” I feared for myself. “Khadijah told Him:
“Allah forbids, Allah would not want you any harm. By Allah, you maintain your kinship ties; you support the weak, you give to the poor. You welcome the hosts generously, and you help the victims of the real crises “.
The visit to the cousin of Khadija
Then she went with the Prophet pbuh to see her cousin Waraqah Ibn Nawfal. He was an older adult, blind, endowed with a knowledge of the Old Books. Khadijah told him, “O my cousin, listen to your nephew’s words.”
Then the Messenger of God, peace, and blessings of Allah be on him, told him what He saw. Waraqah said to him, “This Angel is the Confidant (Gabriel) whom Allah sent to Moses in the past, and please Allah that I am alive at the time your fellow citizens banish you!” – “They will banish me then?“, Exclaimed the Prophet, peace and blessing of Allah be on him.
“Yes,” said Waraqah, “never has a man brought what you bring without being persecuted, and if I live again that day, I will help you with all my strength.” Shortly after, Waraqah died, and the revelation was interrupted for a time.
The revelation of the Quran specificity
The revelation of the Quran is a heavenly unknown that only Allah holds. It is a secret from the Secrets of Allah that He inspires it to His servants. It is, therefore, a divine miracle by which Allah privileges His Prophets and His Messengers. This is a truth that has absolutely nothing to do with hypnotizing, recording voices on tape, or transmitting them over phones or laptops.
The divine revelation of the Quran and the knowledge
In all its forms, the divine revelation is accompanied by knowledge, or awareness, from the one who receives the announcement. He knows that what the truth from Allah communicated with him. Indeed, it was not some imaginary thought or insufflation of the devil, which happens without preliminary, as the awareness of certain emotional phenomena such as hunger, satiety, love, or hatred.
That such is the characteristic of divine revelation. It was specific to the Prophets, peace on them. Inspiration (Ilham) does not belong to particular knowledge, but instead things that one thinks to be true in a thoughtful way. The influence of an angel and a devil may intermingle confusingly.
Revelation is a heavenly unknown that only Allah holds. It is a secret from the Secrets of Allah that He inspires it to His servants. It is, therefore, a divine miracle by which Allah privileges His Prophets and His Messengers. This is a truth that has absolutely nothing to do with hypnotizing, recording voices on tape, or transmitting them over phones or laptops.
The forms of the revelation
In one verse, the noble Qur’an has indicated three forms that revelation can take.
The first: to send a meaning in the heart of Prophet PBUH.
The second: To talk to a Prophet behind a veil. For example, Allah spoke to Mose behind a tree, and Mose replied to His call.
The third: to send an angel to talk directly with a Prophet. The angel was sent to communicate with him. This form is the most common of all. All the Quran’s revelation was of this form called wahy jaliyy (explicit and manifest revelation).
Allah says in the Holy Quran,
“It is not given to any human being that Allah should speak to him unless (it be) by Inspiration, or from behind a veil, or (that) He sends a Messenger to reveal what He wills by His Leave. Verily, He is Most High, Most Wise.”[42-51] And He also said, Glorified be He: “Which the trustworthy Ruh [Jibrael (Gabriel)] has brought down; Upon your heart (O Muhammad SAW) that you may be (one) of the warners,” [26- 193/194].
The angel Jibril (AS) descended with revelations in various forms.
He happens to appear to Prophet PBUH in his real, angelic form. It also happens to appear in a human form; the audience saw it and heard him in this case. It also happens to descend on the Prophet PBUH and remain invisible, but the consequences of his place and emotion were visible on the Messenger. He then leaves his environment as if he had fainted.
It was not about fainting; in this state, He PBUH was absorbed spiritually by the angel’s encounter. He came out of his normal human state, which influences his body, which became very heavy, over which sweat could flow abundantly from his forehead while it does very cold. It can also be the effect of revelation on the Prophet PBUH or the like.
In the latter case, it was his most proven form. It also happens that those presents hear like the sound of bees near the Prophet PBUH’s face, without understanding this sound. As for him, the peace and blessing of Allah on him, he meant and understood what it was revealed.
He said that this was divine revelation, with certainty, without the slightest confusion, without the slightest doubt, without the shadow of imitation. When the revelation stopped, it was discovered in his memory, engraved, as if it had been inscribed in his heart.
Allah – Exalted be He – says: “Nor does he speak of (his own) desire. It is only an Inspiration that is inspired.“. [63- 3/4]
Al-Bukhârî reports in his Sahîh, according to ‘Aisha, that Al-Hârith Ibn Hishâm asked the Messenger of Allah, PBUH: “O Messenger of Allah, how does revelation come to you?”, “Sometimes said the Prophet PBUH, it comes to me like the sound of a bell; it is for me the most tried form. When it ceases, I then understood that it was said to me. Sometimes, the angel appears in a human form, speaks, and I understand what he says. ‘Aisha said, “I saw the revelation one day coming on Him when it was freezing. When the revelation ceased, sweat flowed abundantly from his forehead.”
The inspiration and truthful dreams
It is also a different and distinct truth from inspiration (ilhâm) or truthful dream (ru’yâ sâdiqah), which occurs to humans who are not Prophets or anything else that can happen to humans.
Likewise, the truthful dream, which can occur for many humans, even among perverts and disbelievers, does not have this specific divine revelation characteristic. For the so-called truthful dream, one thinks it is correct, by habit that it is so.
Whoever recites the verses of the Qur’an sees Allah commands that revelation. It is a blessing of Allah for his servants, a grace that He gives to whom He wills. God – the Highest – said:
“You have no hope that the Book would be revealed to you, this was only through the mercy of your Lord“ [Qur’an – 28-86]
The revelation of the Quran is a blessing of Allah.
Obtaining the Prophet’s status is not by merit, even if one would have climbed the good’s highest rungs. It is a blessing of Allah that He gives to whom He wills. Exalted Be Allah, the Provider of gifts.
It happened that the revelation delayed for the Prophet at times when he strongly desired to receive it. But he can not speed it up. Mecca’s inhabitants addressed the Prophet several questions about the Soul (Ar-Ruh), the People of the Cave (Ahl Al-Kahf), and Dhu’l-Qarnayn.
He said to them, “Tomorrow I will give you the answer,” and by forgetfulness, he failed to say “in shâ’a Allah” (God willing). The revelation delayed for a fortnight so that the Meccan miscreants said: “The God of Muhammad has abandoned him and hated him …”. When Jibril came down, the Prophet said to him, “O Jibril, you did not come until I missed you so much.” “I missed you more,” replied Jibril. Then the Prophet asked him, “What prevented you from coming down?” Jibrîl recited:
“We come down only by order of your Lord, to Him all that is before us, all that is behind us, and all that is in between your Lord forgets nothing” [Quran – 19 – 64].
The revelation taught the Prophet to begin with the mention of the Will of Allah so that it would be teaching for his community: “And never say about one thing. * without adding: ‘If Allah wills it,’ and invoke your Lord when you forget and say, ‘I wish my Lord to guide me and bring me closer to what is right’ “[Quran 18 – 23/24].
Then the revelation took charge of answering the questions raised [by the miscreant Meccan]:
“And they ask you concerning the soul, – Say. I gave you little knowledge. “[Quran 17 – 85] In the same way, the revelation dealt with the story of the People of the Cave and that of Dhu’l-Qarnayn. [Surah al Kahf]
The interruption of the revelation of the Quran
Also, Allah suspended the revelation after the first verses of Surah Al-`Alaq (96) were revealed. The revelation was interrupted for three years when the Prophet had a burning desire for the meeting of Jibrîl, and there He felt deep pain, lest the delay of the revelation be a divine punishment for any sin he may have committed.
As the Prophet was walking up the mountains, he heard a voice in the sky. He looked up, and there he saw the Angel who had come to meet him at Hirâ ‘. He was frightened and returned to his wife Khadijah, saying, “Wrap me! Wrap to me!” Exalted Allah, He then revealed these verses: “1. O, you put him on a mantle, 2. Arise and warn, 3. And of your Lord, celebrate greatness, 4. And your garments, cleanse. 5. And from all sin, depart. ” After that, the Revelation resumed with ardor and continued without interruption. [reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim]
The descent of the revelation or its interruption are two things held by the Will of Allah, and the Prophet can neither squeeze the arrival of the revelation nor delay it.
The revelation came down on the Prophet pbuh during the night or in the very cold, or in the strong heat of the south, or during rest during a stay, or in a trip, or in a context of peace or that of war, and even on the occasion of the nocturnal journey (Isrâ ‘) and the Ascension (Mi`râj) towards the heavens.