12. Surah Yusuf

1. Alif-Laaam-Raa; tilka Aayaatul Kitaabil Mubeen

الر ۚ تِلْكَ آيَاتُ الْكِتَابِ الْمُبِينِ

A.L.R. These are the symbols (or Verses) of the perspicuous Book.
Full Transliteration
1. Alif-Laaam-Raa; tilka Aayaatul Kitaabil Mubeen
2. Innaaa anzalnaahu quraanan 'Arabiyyal la 'allakum ta'qiloon
3. Nahnu naqussu 'alaika ahsanal qasasi bimaaa awhainaaa ilaika haazal quraana wa in kunta min qablihee laminal ghaafileen
4. Iz qaala Yoosufu li abeehi yaaa abati innee ra aytu ahada 'ashara kawkabanw wash shamsa walqamara ra aytuhum lee saajideen
5. Qaala yaa bunaiya laa taqsus ru'yaaka 'alaaa ikhwatika fayakeedoo laka kaidaa; innash Shaitaana lil insaani 'aduwwum mubeen
6. Wa kazaalika yajtabeeka rabbuka wa yu'allimuka min ta'weelil ahaadeesi wa yutimmu ni'matahoo 'alaika wa 'alaaa Aali Ya'qooba kamaaa atammahaa 'alaaa abawaika min qablu Ibraaheema wa Ishaaq; inna Rabbaka 'Aleemun hakeem (section 1)
7. Laqad kaana fee Yoosufa wa ikhwatiheee Aayaatul lissaaa'ileen
8. Iz qaaloo la Yoosufu wa akhoohu ahabbu ilaaa Abeenaa minnaa wa nahnu 'usbatun; inna abaanaa lafee dalaalim mubeen
9. Uqtuloo Yoosufa awitra hoohu ardany yakhlu lakum wajhu abeekum wa takoonoo mim ba'dihee qawman saaliheen
10. Qaalaa qaaa'ilum minhum laa taqtuloo Yoosufa wa alqoohu fee ghayaabatil jubbi yaltaqithu badus sai yaarati in kuntum faa 'ileen
11. Qaaloo yaaa abaanaa maa laka laa ta'mannaa 'alaa Yoosufa wa innaa lahoo lanaa sihoon
12. Arsillhu ma'anaa ghadany yarta'wa yal'ab wa innaa lahoo lahaafizoon
13. Qaala innee la yahzununeee an tazhaboo bihee wa akhaafu any ya'kulahuz zi'bu wa antum 'anhu ghaafiloon
14. Qaaloo la in akalahuzzi'bu wa nahnu 'usbatun innaaa izal lakhaasiroon
15. Falammaa zahaboo bihee wa ajma'ooo anyyaj'aloohu fee ghayaabatil jubb; wa awhainaaa ilaihi latunabbi 'annahum bi amrihim haaza wa hum laa yash'uroon
16. Wa jaaa'ooo abaahum 'ishaaa 'any yabkoon
17. Qaaloo yaaa abaanaaa innaa zahabnaa nastabiqu wa taraknaa Yoosufa 'inda mataa'inaa fa akhalahuz zi'b, wa maaa anta bimu'minil lanaa wa law kunnaa saadiqeen
18. Wa jaaa'oo 'alaa qameesi hee bidamin kazib qaala bal sawwalat lakum anfusukum amraa; fasabrun jameel; wallaahul musta'aanu 'alaa maatasifoon
19. Wa jaaa'at saiyaaratun fa-arsaloo waaridahum fa adlaa dalwah; qaala yaa bushraa haaza ghulaam; wa asarroohu bi-daa'ah; wallaahu 'aleemum bimaa ya'maloon
20. Wa sharawhu bisamanim bakhsin daraahima ma'doo datinw wa kaanoo feehi minaz zaahideen (section 2)
21. Wa qaalal lazish taraahu mim Misra limra atiheee akrimee maswaahu 'asaaa any-yanfa'anaaa aw nattakhizahoo waladaa; wa kazaalika mak-kannaa li-Yoosufa fil ardi wa linu'allimahoo min ta'weelil ahaadees; wallaahu ghaalibun 'alaaa amrihee wa laakinna aksaran naasi laa ya'lamoon
22. Wa lammaa balagha ashuddahooo aatainaahu hukmanw wa 'ilmaa; wa kazaa lika najzil muhsineen
23. Wa raawadat hul latee huwa fee baitihaa 'an nafsihee wa ghallaqatil abwaaba wa qaalat haita lak; qaala ma'aazal laahi innahoo rabbeee ahsana maswaay; innahoo laa yuflihuz-zaalimoon
24. Wa laqad hammat bihee wa hamma bihaa law laaa ar ra-aa burhaana rabbih; kazaalika linasrifa 'anhu sooo'a walfa hshaaa'; innahoo min 'ibaadi nal mukhlaseen
25. Wastabaqal baaba wa qaddat qameesahoo min duburinw wa alfayaa saiyidahaa ladal baab; qaalat maa jazaaa'u man araada bi ahlika sooo'an illaaa any-yusjana aw azaabun 'aleem
26. Qaala hiya raawadatnee 'an nafsee wa shahida shaahidum min ahlihaa in kaana qameesuhoo qudda min qubulin fasadaqat wa huwa minal kaazibeen
27. Wa in kaana qameesuhoo qudda min duburin fakazabat wa huwa minas saadiqeen
28. Falammaa ra-aa qamee sahoo qudda min duburin qaala innahoo min kaidikunna inna kaidakunna 'azeem
29. Yoosufu a'rid 'an haaza wastaghfiree li zanbiki innaki kunti minal khaati'een (section 3)
30. Wa qaala niswatun fil madeenatim ra atul'Azeezi turaawidu fataahaa 'an nafsihee qad shaghafahaa hubbaa; innaa lana raahaa fee dalaalim mubeen
31. Falammaa sami'at bimak rihinna arsalat ilaihinna wa a'tadat lahunna muttaka anw wa aatat kulla waahidatim min hunna sikkeenanw wa qaala tikh ruj 'alaihinna falammaa ra aynahooo akbarnahoo wa qatta'na aydiyahunna wa qulna haasha lillaahi maa haaza basharaa; in haazaaa illaa malakun kareem
32. Qaalat fazaalikunnal lazee lumtunnanee feeh; wa laqad raawattuhoo 'an nafsihee fasta'sam; wa la'il lam yaf'al maaa aamuruhoo la yusjananna wa la yakoonam minas saaghireen
33. Qaala rabbis sijnu ahabbu ilaiya mimma yad'oo naneee 'ilaihi wa illaa tasrif 'annee kaidahunna asbu ilaihinna wa akum minal jaahileen
34. Fastajaaba lahoo rabbuhoo fasarafa 'anhu kaidahunn; innahoo huwas Samee'ul 'Aleem (section 4)
35. Summa badaa lahum min ba'di maa ra-awul Aayaati layasjununnahoo hatta heen
36. Wa dakhala ma'a hussijna fata-yaan; qaala ahaduhumaaa inneee araaneee a'siru khamranw wa qaalal aakharu inneee araaneee ahmilu fawqa ra'see khubzan ta'kulut tairu minhu; nabbi'naa bi ta'weelih; innaa naraaka minal muhsineen
37. Qaala laa ya'teekumaa ta'aamun turzaqaaniheee illaa nabba'tukumaa bi ta'weelihee; qabla any ya'ti yakumaa; zaalikumaa mimmaa 'allamanee rabbee; innee taraktu millata qawmil laa yu'minoona billaahi wahum bil aakhirati hum kaafiroon
38. Wattaba'tu millata aabaaa'eee Ibraaheema wa Ishaaqa wa Ya'qoob; maa kaana lanaaa an nushrika billaahi min shai'; zaalikamin fadlil laahi 'alainaa wa 'alan naasi wa laakinna aksaran naasi laa yashkuroon
39. Yaa saahibayis sijni 'a-arbaabum mutafarriqoona khayrun amil laahul waahidul qahhaar
40. Maa  ta'budoona min doonihee illaaa asmaaa'an sam maitumoohaaa antum wa aabaaa'ukum maaa anzalal laahu bihaa min sultan; inilhukmu illaa lillaah; amara allaa ta'budooo illaaa iyyaah; zaalikad deenul qaiyimu wa laakinna aksaran naasi laa ya'lamoon
41. Yaa saahibayis sijni ammaaa ahadukumaa fa yasqee rabbahoo khamranw wa ammal aakharu fa yuslabu fata'kulut tairu mir ra'sih; qudiyal amrul lazee feehi tastaftiyaan
42. Wa qaala lillazee zanna annahoo najim minhumaz kurnee 'inda rabbika fa-ansaahush Shaitaanu zikra Rabbihee falabisa fis sijni bid'a sineen (section 5)
43. Wa qaalal maliku inneee araa sab'a baqaraatin simaaniny ya'kuluhunna sab'un 'ijaafunw wa sab'a sumbulaatin khudrinw wa ukhara yaabisaat; yaaa ayuhal mala-u aftoonee fee ru'yaaya in kuntum lirru'yaa ta'buroon
44. Qaalooo adghaasu ahlaa minw wa maa nahnu bi ta'weelil ahlaami bi'aalimeen
45. Wa qaalal lazee najaa minhumaa waddakara ba'da ummatin ana unabbi'ukum bi ta'weelihee fa-arsiloon
46. Yoosufu ayyuhas siddeequ aftinaa fee sab'i baqaraatin simaaniny ya'kuluhunna sab'un 'ijaafunw wa sabi'i sumbulaatin khudrinw wa ukhara yaabisaatil la'alleee arji'u ilan naasi la'allahum ya'lamoon
47. Qaala tazra'oona sab'a sineena da aban famaa hasattum fazaroohu fee sumbu liheee illaa qaleelam mimmaa ta'kuloon
48. Thumma ya'tee mim ba'di zaalika sab'un shidaaduny ya'kulna maa qaddamtum lahunna illaa qaleelam mimma tuhsinoon
49. Thumma ya'tee mim ba'di zalika 'aamun feehi yughaa sun naasu wa feehi ya'siroon (section 6)
50. Wa qaalal maliku'toonee bihee falammaa jaaa'ahur rasoolu qaalar-ji ilaa rabbika fas'alhu maa baalun niswatil laatee qatta'na aydiyahunn; inna Rabbee bikaidihinna 'Aleem
51. Qaala maa khatbukunna iz raawattunna Yoosufa 'annafsih; qulna haasha lillaahi maa 'alimnaa 'alaihi min sooo'; qaalatim ra atul 'Azeezil 'aana hashasal haqq, ana raawat tuhoo 'an nafsihee wa innahoo laminas saadiqeen
52. Zaalika liya'lama annee lam akhunhu bilghaibi wa annal laaha laa yahdee kaidal khaaa'ineen (End Juz 12)
53. Wa maa ubarri'u nafsee; innan nafsa la ammaaratum bissooo'i illaa maa rahima Rabbee; inna Rabbee Ghafoorur Raheem
54. Wa qaalal maliku' toonee biheee astakhlishu linafsee falammaa kallamahoo qaala innakal yawma ladainaa makeenun ameen
55. Qaalaj 'alnee 'alaa khazaaa'inil ardi innee hafeezun 'aleem
56. Wa kazaalika makkannaa li Yoosufa fil ardi yatabawwa'u minhaa haisu yashaaaa'; nuseebu birahmatinaa man nashaaa'u wa laa nudee'u ajral muhsineen
57. Wa la ajrul Aakhirati khairul lillazeena aamanoo wa kaanoo yattaqoon (section 7)
58. Wa jaaa'a ikhwatu Yoosufa fadakhaloo 'alaihi fa'arafahum wa hum lahoo munkiroon
59. Wa lammaa jahhazahum bijahaazihim qaala' toonee bi akhil lakum min abeekum; alaa tarawna anneee oofil kaila wa ana khairul munzileen
60. Fa il lam taatoonee bihee falaa kaila lakum 'indee wa laa taqraboon
61. Qaaloo sanuraawidu 'anhu abaahu wa innaa lafaa'iloon
62. Wa qaala lifityaanihij 'aloo bidaa'atahum fee rihaalihim la'allahum ya'rifoonahaaa izan qalabooo ilaaa ahlihim la'allahum yarji'oon
63. Falammaa raja'ooo ilaaa abeehim qaaloo yaaa abaanaa muni'a minnal kailu fa arsil ma'anaaa akhaanaa naktal wa innaa lahoo lahaafizoon
64. Qaala hal aamanukum 'alaihi illaa kamaa amintukum 'alaaa akheehi min qabl; fal laahu khairun haafizanw wa Huwa arhamur Raahimeen
65. Wa lammaa fatahoo mataa 'ahum wajadoo bidaa'atahum ruddat ilaihim qaaloo yaaa abaanaa maa nabghee; haazihee bida 'atunaa ruddat ilainaa wa nameeru ahlanaa wa nahfazu akhaanaa wa nazdaadu kaila ba'eer; zaalika kailuny yaseer
66. Qaala lan ursilahoo ma'akum hattaa tu'tooni mawsiqam minal laahis lataa tunnanee biheee illaaa nay yuhaata bikum falammaaa aatawhu mawsiqahum qaalal laahu 'alaa maa naqoolu Wakeel
67. Wa qaala yaa baniyya laa tadkhuloo mim baabinw waa hidinw wadkhuloo min abwaabim mutafarriqah; wa maaa ughnee 'ankum minal laahi min shai'in; inil hukmu illaa lillaahi 'alaihi tawakkaltu wa 'alaihi fal yatawakkalil Mutawakkiloon
68. Wa lammaa dakhaloo min haisu amarahum aboohum maa kaana yughnee 'anhum minal laahi min shai'in illaa haajatan fee nafsi Ya'qooba qadaahaa; wa innahoo lazoo 'ilmil limaa 'allamnaahu wa laakinna aksaran naasi laa ya'lamoon (section 8)
69. Wa lammaa dakhaloo 'alaa Yoosufa aawaaa ilaihi akhaahu qaala inneee ana akhooka falaa tabta'is bimaa kaanoo ya'maloon
70. Falammaa jahhazahum bijahaazihim ja'alas siqaayata fee rahli akheehi summa azzana mu'azzinun ayyatuhal'eeru innakum lasaariqoon
71. Qaaloo wa aqbaloo 'alaihim maazaa tafqidoon
72. Qaaloo nafqidu suwaa'al maliki wa liman jaaa'a bihee himlu ba'eerinw wa ana bihee za'eem
73. Qaaloo tallaahi laqad 'alimtum maa ji'na linufsida fil ardi wa maa kunnaa saariqeen
74. Qaaloo famaa jazaaa'u hooo in kuntum kaazibeen
75. Qaaloo jazaaa'uhoo manw wujida fee rahlihee fahuwa jazaaa'uh; kazaalika najziz zaalimeen
76. Fabada-a bi-aw'iyatihim qabla wi'aaa'i akheehi summas takhrajahaa minw wi 'aaa'i akheeh; kazaalika kidnaa li Yoosuf; maa kaana liyaakhuza akhaahu fee deenil maliki illaaa any yashaaa'al laah; narfa'u darajaatim man nashaaa'; wa fawqa kulli zee 'ilmin 'Aleem
77. Qaaloo iny yasriq faqad saraqa akhul lahoo min qabl; fa asarrahaa Yoosufu fee nafsihee wa lam yubdihaa lahum; qaala antum sharrum makaananw wallaahu a'lamu bimaa tasifoon
78. Qaaloo yaaa ayyuhal 'Azeezu inna lahooo aban shaikhan kabeeran fakhuz ahadanaa makaanahoo innaa naraaka minal muhsineen
79. Qaala ma'aazal laahi an naakhuza illaa manw wajadnaa mataa'anaa 'indahoo innaaa izal lazaalimoon (section 9)
80. Falammas tay'asoo minhu khalasoo najiyyan qaala kabeeruhum alam ta'lamoon anna abaakum qad akhaza 'alaikum mawsiqam minal laahi wa min qablu maa farrattum fee Yoosufa falan abrahal arda hattaa yaazana leee abeee aw yahkumal laahu lee wa huwa khairul lhaakimeen
81. Irji'ooo ilaaa abeekum faqooloo yaaa abaanaaa innab naka saraq; wa maa shahidnaaa illaa bimaa 'alimnaa wa maa kunnaa lilghaibi haafizeen
82. Was'alil qaryatal latee kunnaa feehaa wal'eeral lateee aqbalnaa feehaa wa innaa lasaadiqoon
83. Qaala bal sawwalat lakum anfusukum amran fasabrun jameelun 'asal laahu any yaa tiyanee bihim jamee'aa; innahoo Huwal 'Aleemul Hakeem
84. Wa tawallaa 'anhum wa qaala yaaa asafaa 'alaa Yoosufa wabyaddat 'aynaahu minal huzni fahuwa kazeem
85. Qaaloo tallaahi tafta'u tazkuru Yoosufa hattaa takoona haradan aw takoona minal haalikeen
86. Qaala innamaaa ashkoo bassee wa huzneee ilal laahi wa a'lamu minal laahi maa laa ta'lamoon
87. Yaa baniyyaz haboo fatahassasoo miny Yoosufa wa akheehi wa laa tai'asoo mir rawhil laahi innahoo laa yai'asu mir rawhil laahi illal qawmul kaafiroon
88. Falammaa dakhaloo 'alaihi qaaloo yaaa ayyuhal 'Azeezu massanaa wa ahlanad durru wa ji'naa bibidaa 'timmuzjaatin fa awfi lanal kaila wa tasaddaq 'alainaa innal laaha yajzil mutasaddiqeen
89. Qaala hal 'alimtum maa fa'altum bi Yoosufa wa akheehi iz antum jaahiloon
90. Qaaloo 'a innaka la anta Yoosufu qaala ana Yoosufu wa haazaaa akhee qad mannal laahu 'alainaa innahoo mai yattaqi wa yasbir fa innal laaha laa yudee'u ajral muhsineen
91. Qaaloo tallaahi laqad aasarakal laahu 'alainaa wa in kunnaa lakhaati'een
92. Qaala laa tasreeba 'alaikumul yawma yaghfirul laahu lakum wa Huwa arhamur raahimeen
93. Izhaboo biqameesee haazaa fa alqoohu 'alaa wajhi abee yaati baseeranw waatoonee bi ahlikum ajma'een (section 10)
94. Wa lammaa fasalatil 'eeru qaala aboohum innee la ajidu reeha Yoosufa law laaa an tufannidoon
95. Qaaloo tallaahi innaka lafee dalaalikal qadeem
96. Falammaaa an jaaa'albasheeru alqaahu 'alaa wajhihee fartadda baseeran qaala alam aqul lakum inneee a'lamu minal laahi maa laa ta'lamoon
97. Qaaloo yaaa abaanas taghfir lanaa zunoo =banaaa innaa kunnaa khaati'een
98. Qaala sawfa astaghfiru lakum Rabbeee innahoo Huwal Ghafoorur Raheem
99. Falammaa dakhaloo 'alaa Yoosufa aawaaa ilaihi abayaihi wa qaalad khuloo Misra inshaaa'al laahu aamineen
100. Wa raf'a abawaihi 'alal 'arshi wa kharroo lahoo sujjadaa; wa qaala yaaa abati haaza taaweelu ru'yaaya min qablu qad ja'alahaa Rabbee haqqaa; wa qad ahsana beee iz akhrajanee minas sijni wa jaaa'a bikum minal badwi mim ba'di an nazaghash Shaitaanu bainee wa baina ikhwatee; inna Rabbee lateeful limaa yashaaa'; innahoo Huwal 'Aleemul Hakeem
101. Rabbi qad aataitanee minal mulki wa 'allamtanee min taaweelil ahaadees; faati ras samaawaati wal ardi Anta waliyyee fid dunyaa wal Aakhirati tawaffanee muslimanw wa alhiqnee bissaaliheen
102. Zaalika min ambaaa'il ghaibi nooheehi ilaika wa maa kunta ladaihim iz ajma'ooo amrahum wa hum yamkuroon
103. Wa maa aksarun naasi wa law harasta bimu'mineen
104. Wa maa tas'aluhum 'alaihi min ajr; in huwa illaa zikrul lil'aalameen (section 11)
105. Wa ka ayyim min Aayatin fis samaawaati wal ardi yamurroona 'alaihaa wa hum 'anhaa mu'ridoon
106. Wa maa yu'minu aksaru hum billaahi illaa wa hum mushrikoon
107. Afa aminooo an taatiya hum ghaashiyatum min 'azaabil laahi aw taatiyahumus Saa'atu baghtatanw wa hum laa yash'uroon
108. Qul haazihee sabeeleee ad'ooo ilal laah; 'alaa baseera tin ana wa manit taba'anee wa Subhaanal laahi wa maaa ana minal mushrikeen
109. Wa maaa arsalnaa min qablika illaa rijaalan nooheee ilaihim min ahlil quraa; afalam yaseeroo fil ardi fa yanzuroo kaifa kaana 'aaqibatul lazeena min qablihim; wa la Daarul Aakhirati Khairul lillazeenat taqaw; afalaa ta'qiloon
110. Hattaaa izas tai'asar Rusulu wa zannooo annahum qad kuziboo jaaa'ahum nas runaa fanujjiya man nashaaa'u wa laa yuraddu baasunna 'anil qawmil mujrimeen
111. Laqad kaana fee qasasihim 'ibratul li ulil albaab; maa kaana hadeesany yuftaraa wa laakin tasdeeqal lazee baina yadihi wa tafseela kulli shai'inw wa hudanw wa rahmatal liqawminy yu'minoon (section 12)
Audio: English
Audio: Arabic & English

Recitation by Mishary Al-Alfasy

Tafseer

By AMR KHALED

Surat Yusuf is Makkan and was revealed during the same time and circumstances surat Hud and surat Yunus were revealed. It is considered to be the longest surah in the Ever-Glorious Qur’an in terms of the story it has. It includes the story of Prophet Yusuf (AS) “Joseph” from the beginning until the end. It consists of 111 ayahs.

The Best of Stories:
Novelists comment on surat Yusuf saying that it includes all the craft and components of fiction: suspense, description, coherence, and symbolism. For example, the story commences with a dream that Prophet Yusuf (AS) had and ends with the explanation of that same dream. The shirt of Prophet Yusuf (AS), which is used as a means of exonerating his brothers, is later used as evidence of their betrayal. This shirt is later used as a means of exonerating Yusuf himself from the false accusation of molesting the wife of Al-Aziz.

Moreover, one of the wonders of this story is that its meanings and events are vividly dramatized for the reader, as if he is actually seeing and hearing them. Also, it is one of the most fascinating and striking stories you will ever read.

We barely need to solicit novelists’ recognition of the story, as Allah Himself is the One Who substantiates its quality and excellence. He says what can be translated as, "We, Ever We, narrate to you the fairest of narratives in that We have revealed to you this Qur’an." (TMQ, 12:3). However, the purpose of having this surah in the Ever-Glorious Qur’an is scarcely limited to telling a story. On the contrary, its real purpose is summarized in the last line of the story in which Allah says what can be translated as, "They said, “Is it sure that you, indeed you, are Y ûsuf?” (Joseph) “I am Y ûsuf,” he said, “and this is my brother. Allah has already been bounteous to us. Surely whoever is pious and (endures) patiently, then surely Allah does not waste the reward of the fair-doers.” (TMQ, 12:90).

Thus, the core idea of the story is:

Allah is Omniscient and we are Deficient in Knowledge

The aim of surat Yusuf is to educate us that Allah’s (SWT) manipulation of things is different from the limited perception of humans. It is as if it is telling us, “have faith in what Allah (SWT) plans, and be patient and do not give up.”

The events in the surah are weird; they run contrary to what they seem to be. Yusuf is loved by his father, and this seems good. Nonetheless, Yusuf is thrown down a pit by his brothers as a result of that love. Furthermore, although the incident of throwing Yusuf in the pit appears vicious, Yusuf consequently moves to the house of al-Aziz.

The presence of Yusuf in the house of al-Aziz is apparently a good thing, however, Yusuf is sent to prison afterwards. Moreover, whereas the imprisonment of Yusuf appears to be a very bad thing, yet Yusuf is appointed as the minister of finance in Egypt.

What Allah (SWT) wants to pass to us through the story of Yusuf (SAWS) is that He is the only One Who plans things. One may conceive of incidents as bad, however, this deficient perception characteristic of humans is far from realizing Allah’s (SWT) discretion and wisdom in His judgment.

The Road of Curves:
When we read through the life-story of Yusuf (SAWS), we notice that there are three highs and two lows. This can be represented as follows:
Father’s love Joining Al-Aziz’s household Becoming minister in Egypt Being thrown in the pit Being imprisoned

The distressful stages in the life of Prophet Yusuf (AS) vary in their intensity. Which is more difficult: the pit or the prison? He stays in the prison for nine years, but he stays in the pit for only three days. However, these days in the pit are more difficult because he was still a little boy. In the midst of all these misfortunes, Yusuf stands firm by his morals and is not moved by the vicissitudes of life.

You are a Slave in Both Cases:
If you Muslims undergo hard times, learn from Prophet Yusuf (AS) who, despite all adverse circumstances, remained patient and hopeful. Similarly, learn from him how to cope with periods of tranquillity and comfort by being humble and loyal to Allah (SWT). Thus, the surah teaches us that there are ups and downs in man’s life. Nobody leads a life of either utter prosperity or utter hardship. He is being tested in both cases. The story of Prophet Yusuf (AS) is the story of adhering to morals in both cases of hardship and prosperity. Prophet Yusuf (AS) is patient and does not lose hope in misfortunes. He is also loyal and humble to Allah (SWT) in prosperity. Thus, he abides by morals in times of prosperity and difficulty.

Between the surah and the Biography:
As previously mentioned, the surah was sent down almost in the same circumstances of surat Hud and surat Yunus, and at a time when persecution of Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) and his companions had intensified. These circumstances are similar to those faced by Prophet Yusuf (AS). For example, Prophet Yusuf (AS) was separated from his father. Similarly, when the surah descended upon our Messenger (SAWS) in the tenth year of his mission, he had already lost his uncle Abu-Taleb and his wife Khadijah (RA). Leaving his family behind, Prophet Yusuf (AS) left his father’s country, Palestine, and went to Egypt. Two years after the revelation of the surah, our Messenger (SAWS) left Makkah and travelled to Madinah. Thus, the surah of Yusuf prepares the Messenger for the misfortunes and afflictions he will face. Also, it prepares all the believers to face misfortunes in their lives. That is the reason why scholars comment on it by saying that any distressed person who reads this surah is bound to become happy.

Yusuf the Human:
It is important to realize that the surah focuses on the life of Prophet Yusuf (AS) as a man. However, surat Ghafir sheds light on Yusuf the Prophet when Prophet Musa (AS) “Moses” says to his people in Allah’s words what can be translated as, “And indeed Yû suf (Joseph) already came to you earlier with the supreme evidence (s), yet in no way did you cease being in doubt concerning what he came to you with ….”(TMQ, 40:34).

The experience of Yusuf in this surah is merely the experience of a human being, and it ends up in ultimate success both in this life and in the hereafter. As for this life, he is appointed as the Egyptian minister of finance. For the hereafter, he resists the temptations of the wife of al-Aziz and the other women in the city. Thus, it is a story of human success. It is a story of a patient human being who does not lose hope, despite all the circumstances which he undergoes. His success is unpredictable as he moves from misfortune to misfortune: his brothers’ hatred, slavery, his emigration from his country, the seductiveness of the wife of Al-Aziz, and putting up with lies and false accusations.

Where are the Miracles in the Story?
The story does not refer to any miracles happening during the events Prophet Yusuf encounters. Some may consider the vision itself a miracle, but any ordinary person may have a vision. The surah concentrates on how Allah (SWT) paves for him the way to success, just as He would do to any other person. For instance, Allah teaches Prophet Yusuf how to render visions. Allah says what can be translated as, "And thus your Lord will select you and teach you (a portion) of the interpretation of discourses …. (TMQ, 12:6). However, the success of Prophet Yusuf (AS) is achieved by taking advantage of the qualifications bestowed upon him by Allah.

"Never Give up Hope on Allah’s Mercy":
The story of Prophet Yusuf (AS) is the story of the success of a person who has lived through difficult circumstances and who is not equipped with the necessary potentialities for success. However, he refuses to give up hope. The ayahs of the surah are full of hope. For instance, when Prophet Yaqub (AS) “Jacob” lost his second son, and his calamity is duplicated, He says in Allah’s words what can be translated as, "… and do not despair of relief from Allah; surely none despairs of relief from Allah except the disbelieving people.” (TMQ, 12:87). This ayah does not mean that the hopeless person is a disbeliever. It means that he acts like a disbeliever because he does not realize that nobody knows what Allah plans in the universe and that Allah is the Generous, the Merciful, and the Wise in all that He does.

Success is Achieved by Allah’s Support:
One of the aspects of this magnanimous prophet’s greatness is observed is his showing humility to Allah and feeling grateful to Him. After succeeding in his life occupying senior positions he is not carried away by the euphoria of victory. He says at the end of the story what can be translated as, “Lord! You have already brought me (my share) of kingship and You have taught me (my share) of the interpretation of discourses. O Originator (Literally: Renderer; i.e., Creator) of the heavens and the earth, You are my Ever-Patronizing Patron in the present (life) (Literally: the lowly (life), the life of this world) and the Hereafter, Take me up to You as a Muslim (One who submits to you) and join me with the righteous.” (TMQ, 12:101). Notice his humbleness when he says, "and join me with the righteous" as if the righteous preceded him and he wanted to join them. Thus, Prophet Yusuf (AS) has succeeded in the test of prosperity by being grateful and humble to Allah, and in the test of misfortunes by being patient and hopeful.

You are up to it:
The comment on the experience of Prophet Yusuf (AS) comes in a wonderful ayah for two reasons: to assure Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) of the fulfillment of Allah’s promise and His victory, and afterwards to pass it to his people so that they may know it for certainty. Listen to this ayah with all your heart and soul, "Till, when the Messengers finally despaired and expected that they were counted liars, Our victory came to them. So, whoever We decided will be safely delivered. And Our violence will not be turned back (i.e., turned away from) from the criminal people.” (TMQ, 12:110).

The Summary of the Experience:
The surah concludes with a core idea. After Prophet Yusuf (AS) becomes victorious and fulfills all his wishes, he says what can be translated as, "They said, ‘Is it sure that you, indeed you, are Y ûsuf?’ (Joseph) “I am Y ûsuf, ” he said, “and this is my brother. Allah has already been bounteous to us. Surely whoever is pious and (endures) patiently, then surely Allah does not waste the reward of the fair-doers.” (TMQ, 12:90).

The story of Prophet Yusuf (AS) teaches us that whoever wants to succeed and bears in mind a goal he wishes to accomplish, he will certainly achieve it via patience and hope, seeking Allah’s support and not succumbing to despair: "They said, ‘Is it sure that you, indeed you, are Y ûsuf?’ (Joseph) “I am Y ûsuf, ” he said, “and this is my brother. Allah has already been bounteous to us. Surely whoever is pious and (endures) patiently, then surely Allah does not waste the reward of the fair-doers." (TMQ, 12:90).

In these words, Prophet Yusuf (AS) summarizes for us his own experience in life which, as mentioned before, is a mere human experience. Thus, whoever wants to succeed in life has to first fear Allah. Second, he has to request Allah’s assistance. Third, not only does he have to be patient in coping with the misfortunes, but he also has to conquer the obstacles surrounding him.

The patience recommended here is conducive to being positive and perseverant. It follows that one should, for example, take advantage of every opportunity to learn a new skill, as Prophet Yusuf (AS) has done, since he learned how to manage finance during his stay at the house of al-Aziz. This is the reason why Prophet Yusuf says in Allah’s words what can be translated as, “He (Yû suf) said, “Set me over the lands treasuries. Surely I am constantly-persevering, (i.e., guardian) constantly-knowing.” (TMQ, 12:55).

O youth! Learn from Prophet Yusuf (AS) these two things: be successful in your professional life and excel in this life and hereafter through knowledge and hard work; and second, to resist temptations and abstain from them so that you can win the Jannah (Paradise).