1.What are the huruuf muqattats in the Quran?
2. Are there any hadiths which state that the elbows are included in wudhu?
In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.
Huruuf Muqatt’at’s are words such as Ha,mim or Alif,laam,mim etc… each of the letter is pronounced separately without the addition of a vowel sound after it.
According to some commentators, these letters are the names of the surahs at the beginning of which they occur, according to others, they are the symbols of the divine names. However, the majority of scholars preferred the view that these letters are symbols or mysteries, the meaning which Allah (SWA) knows alone or he may have had a special secret with the Prophet of Allah (SAW) not to communicate it to anyone else.
According to Amir Al-shabi, Sufyan Thawri and many other scholars, every revealed book contains secret signs, symbols and mysteries of Allah. Thus, these letters are the secrets of Allah (SWA) and are considered as among the “Mutashabihat” (hidden meaning), the meaning of which is known to Allah (SWA) and we should not even enter into discussions with regards to them.
However, great and authentic scholars have reported interpretations of these letters. Their purpose was not to claim that these interpretations were the meanings intended by Allah (SWA) himself. They did it to awaken the minds of the readers to the different possibilities of meanings that lie hidden in the Quran or just to simplify things. (Extracted from Marriful- Quran p.98 v.1)
It is narrated by Hazrat Abu Hurrairah (RA) that the Prophet of Allah (SAW) performed ablution, he washed his face, and then he did the wudhu completely. Then his washed his right forearm up to his elbows. Then he washed his left forearm up to his elbows. Then he did masah over his head. Then he washed his right foot up to his ankles and his left foot up to his ankles. (Muslim P.126 v.1)
The Arabic term mentioned in the hadith is “hata Ashraa fil adhudi” and “hata ashraa fis- saaqi.”
Imam Nawai (RA) has said that these words indicate that the elbows and ankles are also included in the washing for wudhu.
Only Allah Knows Best
Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham.