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al-Qalam (The Pen)
as rendered by Arthur John Arberry
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Arthur John Arberry rendition of Surah The Pen(al-Qalam)
68:1 Nun. By the Pen, and what they inscribe,
68:2 thou art not, by the blessing of thy Lord, a man possessed.
68:3 Surely thou shalt have a wage unfailing;
68:4 surely thou art upon a mighty morality.
68:5 So thou shalt see, and they will see,
68:6 which of you is the demented.
68:7 Surely thy Lord knows very well those who have gone astray from His way, and He knows very well those who are guided.
68:8 So obey thou not those who cry lies.
68:9 They wish that thou shouldst compromise, then they would compromise.
68:10 And obey thou not every mean swearer,
68:11 backbiter, going about with slander,
68:12 hinderer of good, guilty aggressor, coarse-grained,
68:13 moreover ignoble,
68:14 because he has wealth and sons.
68:15 When Our signs are recited to him, he says, 'Fairy-tales of the ancients!'
68:16 We shall brand him upon the muzzle!
68:17 Now We have tried them, even as We tried the owners of the garden when they swore they would pluck in the morning
68:18 and they added not the saving words.
68:19 Then a visitation from thy Lord visited it, while they were sleeping,
68:20 and in the morning it was as if it were a garden plucked.
68:21 In the morning they called to one another,
68:22 'Come forth betimes upon your tillage, if you would pluck!'
68:23 So they departed, whispering together,
68:24 'No needy man shall enter it today against your will.'
68:25 And they went forth early, determined upon their purpose.
68:26 But when they saw it, they said, 'Surely we are gone astray;
68:27 nay, rather we have been robbed!'
68:28 Said the most moderate of them, 'Did I not say to you, "Why do you not give glory?"'
68:29 They said, 'Glory be to God, our Lord; truly, we were evildoers.'
68:30 And they advanced one upon another, blaming each other.
68:31 They said, 'Woe, alas for us! Truly, we were insolent.
68:32 It may be that our Lord will give us in exchange a better than it; to our Lord we humbly turn.'
68:33 Such is the chastisement; and the chastisement of the world to come, is assuredly greater, did they but know.
68:34 Surely for the godfearing shall be Gardens of Bliss with their Lord.
68:35 What, shall we make those who have surrendered like to the sinners?
68:36 What ails you then, how you judge?
68:37 Or have you a Book wherein you study?
68:38 Surely therein you shall have whatever you choose!
68:39 Or have you oaths from Us, reaching to the Day of Resurrection? Surely you shall have whatever you judge!
68:40 Ask them, which of them will guarantee that!
68:41 Or do they have associates? Then let them bring their associates, if they speak truly.
68:42 Upon the day when the leg shall be bared, and they shall be summoned to bow themselves, but they cannot;
68:43 humbled shall be their eyes, and abasement shall overspread them, for they had been summoned to bow themselves while they were whole.
68:44 So leave Me with him who cries lies to this discourse! We will draw them on little by little whence they know not;
68:45 and I shall respite them -- assuredly My guile is sure.
68:46 Or askest thou them for a wage, and so they are weighed down with debt?
68:47 Or is the Unseen in their keeping, and so they are writing it down?
68:48 So be thou patient under the judgment of thy Lord, and be not as the Man of the Fish, when he called, choking inwardly.
68:49 Had there not overtaken him a blessing from his Lord he would have been cast upon the wilderness, being condemned.
68:50 But his Lord had chosen him, and He placed him among the righteous.
68:51 The unbelievers wellnigh strike thee down with their glances, when they hear the Reminder, and they say, 'Surely he is a man possessed!'
68:52 And it is nothing but a Reminder unto all beings.


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