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watarā
وَتَرَى
And you (might) have seen
l-shamsa
ٱلشَّمْسَ
the sun,
idhā
إِذَا
when
ṭalaʿat
طَلَعَت
it rose,
tazāwaru
تَّزَٰوَرُ
inclining away
ʿan
عَن
from
kahfihim
كَهْفِهِمْ
their cave
dhāta
ذَاتَ
to
l-yamīni
ٱلْيَمِينِ
the right,
wa-idhā
وَإِذَا
and when
gharabat
غَرَبَت
it set,
taqriḍuhum
تَّقْرِضُهُمْ
passing away from them
dhāta
ذَاتَ
to
l-shimāli
ٱلشِّمَالِ
the left
wahum
وَهُمْ
while they
فِى
(lay) in
fajwatin
فَجْوَةٍ
the open space
min'hu
مِّنْهُۚ
thereof.
dhālika
ذَٰلِكَ
That
min
مِنْ
(was) from
āyāti
ءَايَٰتِ
(the) Signs
l-lahi
ٱللَّهِۗ
(of) Allah.
man
مَن
Whoever
yahdi
يَهْدِ
Allah guides
l-lahu
ٱللَّهُ
Allah guides
fahuwa
فَهُوَ
and he
l-muh'tadi
ٱلْمُهْتَدِۖ
(is) the guided one,
waman
وَمَن
and whoever
yuḍ'lil
يُضْلِلْ
He lets go astray
falan
فَلَن
then never
tajida
تَجِدَ
you will find
lahu
لَهُۥ
for him
waliyyan
وَلِيًّا
a protector,
mur'shidan
مُّرْشِدًا
a guide.

Wa tarash shamsa izaa tala'at tazaawaru 'an kahfihim zaatal yameeni wa izaa gharabat taqriduhum zaatash shimaali wa hum fee fajwatim minh; zaalika min Aayaatillaah; mai yahdil laahu fahuwal muhtad, wa mai yudlil falan tajida lahoo waliyyam murshidaa

Sahih International:

And [had you been present], you would see the sun when it rose, inclining away from their cave on the right, and when it set, passing away from them on the left, while they were [laying] within an open space thereof. That was from the signs of Allah. He whom Allah guides is the [rightly] guided, but he whom He leaves astray - never will you find for him a protecting guide.

1 A. J. Arberry

And thou mightest have seen the sun, when it rose, inclining from their Cave towards the right, and, when it set, passing them by on the left, while they were in a broad fissure of the Cave. That was one of God's signs; whomsoever God guides, he is rightly guided, and whomsoever He leads astray, thou wilt not find for him a protector to direct.

2 Abdul Haleem

You could have seen the [light of the] sun as it rose, moving away to the right of their cave, and when it set, moving away to the left of them, while they lay in the wide space inside the cave. (This is one of God’s signs: those people God guides are rightly guided, but you will find no protector to lead to the right path those He leaves to stray.)

3 Abdul Majid Daryabadi

And thou Woudst behold the sun when it riseth veering away from their cave on the right, and when it setteth, passing them by on the left, while they were in the spacious part thereof: that is of the signs of Allah. Whomsoever Allah guideth, he indeed is the guided; and whomsoever He sendeth astray, for him thou wilt never find a directing friend.

4 Abdullah Yusuf Ali

Thou wouldst have seen the sun, when it rose, declining to the right from their Cave, and when it set, turning away from them to the left, while they lay in the open space in the midst of the Cave. Such are among the Signs of Allah; He whom Allah, guides is rightly guided; but he whom Allah leaves to stray,- for him wilt thou find no protector to lead him to the Right Way.

5 Abul Ala Maududi

Had you seen them in the Cave it would have appeared to you that when the sun rose, it moved away from their Cave to the right; and when it set, it turned away from them to the left, while they remained in a spacious hollow in the Cave. This is one of the Signs of Allah. Whomsoever Allah guides, he alone is led aright; and whomsoever Allah lets go astray, you will find for him no guardian to direct him.

6 Ahmed Ali

You may well have seen when the sun came up it moved away to the right of the cave, and when it went down it turned away to the left, and they stayed in its open space. This was among the signs of God. Whoever is guided by God follows the right path; and whosoever goes astray will not find a guide to show him the way.

7 Ahmed Raza Khan

And O dear Prophet (Mohammed – peace and blessings be upon him) you will see the sun that when it rises it shifts away to the right of their cave, and when it sets it shifts away to their left, and they are in the open ground of that cave; this is from among the signs of Allah; whomever Allah guides – only he is therefore guided; and whomever He sends astray – you will never find for him a friend who guides.

8 Ali Quli Qarai

You may see the sun, when it rises, slanting toward the right of their cave, and, when it sets, cut across them towards the left, and they are in a cavern within it. That is one of Allah’s signs. Whomever Allah guides is rightly guided, and whomever He leads astray, you will never find for him any guardian or guide.

9 Ali Ünal

(They entered the Cave and fell into a deep sleep.) You would have seen the sun, when it rose, moving away from their Cave to the right, and when it set, turning away from them to the left, while they lay in a spacious hollow in the Cave. That was one of God’s signs. Whoever God guides, he alone is rightly guided; and whoever He leads astray, you will never be able to find for him any guardian to guide him to the right way.

10 Amatul Rahman Omar

And (O people!) you could see the sun when it rose, inclining to the right of their (spacious) Place of Refuge, and when it set declining to their left, while they were in the open space of this (refuge of theirs); this was one of the signs of Allâh. He alone is rightly guided whom Allâh guides. As for the person whom He forsakes, you will find no helper, no guide, for him.

11 English Literal

And you see the sun when it rose/ascended/appeared, it bends and curves/visits on their cave that of the right, and when it departed/declined/set, it parallels/crosses/passes them that of the left, and they are in an opening from it; that (is) from God`s verses/signs/evidences; whom God guides so he is the guided, and whom He misguides/who misguides (others) so you will never/not find for him a guardian/ally a correct/right guide.

12 Faridul Haque

And O dear Prophet (Mohammed - peace and blessings be upon him) you will see the sun that when it rises it shifts away to the right of their cave, and when it sets it shifts away to their left, and they are in the open ground of that cave; this is from among the signs of Allah; whomever Allah guides - only he is therefore guided; and whomever He sends astray - you will never find for him a friend who guides.

13 Hamid S. Aziz

And you might have seen the sun, when it rose, decline from their cave towards the right hand, and when it set leave them on the left hand, while they were in the spacious part thereof. That is one of the Signs of Allah. Whom Allah guides he is guided indeed, and whom He leads astray you shall surely find for him no patron to the Right Way.

14 Hilali & Khan

And you might have seen the sun, when it rose, declining to the right from their Cave, and when it set, turning away from them to the left, while they lay in the midst of the Cave. That is (one) of the Ayat (proofs, evidences, signs) of Allah. He whom Allah guides, is rightly guided; but he whom He sends astray, for him you will find no Wali (guiding friend) to lead him (to the right Path).

15 Maulana Mohammad Ali

And when you withdraw from them and what they worship save Allah, take refuge in the Cave; your Lord will spread forth for you of His mercy, and provide for you a profitable course in your affair.

16 Mohammad Habib Shakir

And you might see the sun when it rose, decline from their cave towards the right hand, and when it set, leave them behind on the left while they were in a wide space thereof. This is of the signs of Allah; whomsoever Allah guides, he is the rightly guided one, and whomsoever He causes to err, you shall not find for him any friend to lead (him) aright.

17 Mohammed Marmaduke William Pickthall

And thou mightest have seen the sun when it rose move away from their cave to the right, and when it set go past them on the left, and they were in the cleft thereof. That was (one) of the portents of Allah. He whom Allah guideth, he indeed is led aright, and he whom He sendeth astray, for him thou wilt not find a guiding friend.

18 Muhammad Sarwar

No sunlight could reach them during their sleep in the cave. One could see the rising sun decline to the right of their cave and the setting sun move its way to the left whilst they were sleeping in an opening of the cave. This is one of the miracles of God. Whomever God guides receives the right guidance and you will never find a guardian or guide for those whom He causes to go astray.

19 Qaribullah & Darwish

You might have seen the rising sun incline towards the right of their Cave, and, as it set go past them on the left, while they stayed within an open space in the Cave. That was one of the signs of Allah. He whom Allah guides is rightly guided; but he whom He leads astray you shall not find for him a guardian to guide him.

20 Safi-ur-Rahman al-Mubarakpuri

And you might have seen the sun, when it rose, declining to the right from their cave, and when it set, turning away from them to the left, while they lay in the midst of the cave. That is from the Ayat of Allah. He whom Allah guides, he is the rightly-guided; but he whom He sends astray, for him you will find no guardian to lead him.

21 Wahiduddin Khan

The sun could be observed to incline away from their cave on the right, as it rose, and to turn away from them on the left, when it set, while they lay in the wide space inside the cave. This is one of the signs of God. He whom God guides is rightly guided; but for him whom He lets go astray, you will find no helper or guide.

22 Talal Itani

You would have seen the sun, when it rose, veering away from their cave towards the right, and when it sets, moving away from them to the left, as they lay in the midst of the cave. That was one of God’s wonders. He whom God guides is truly guided; but he whom He misguides, for him you will find no directing friend.

23 Tafsir jalalayn

And you might have seen the sun, when it rose, inclining (read tazzwaru or tazwaru) away from their Cave towards the right, side of it, and, when it set, go past them on the left, avoid them and pass over them, so that it does not fall on them at all, while they were in a cavern therein, in an ample space inside the Cave where the coolness and the gentle breeze of the winds reached them. That, which is mentioned, was [one] of God's signs, [one of] the proofs of His power. Whomever God guides, he indeed is rightly guided, and whomever He leads astray, you will not find for him a guiding friend.

24 Tafseer Ibn Kathir

The Location of the Cave

Allah tells;

وَتَرَى الشَّمْسَ إِذَا طَلَعَت تَّزَاوَرُ عَن كَهْفِهِمْ ذَاتَ الْيَمِينِ

And you might have seen the sun, when it rose, declining to the right from their cave, and when it set, turning away from them to the left, while they lay in the midst of the cave.

This indicates that the entrance to the cave faced north, because Allah tells us that when the sun was rising, sunlight entered the cave
ذَاتَ الْيَمِينِ
(the right),

meaning that the shade decreased towards the right, as Ibn Abbas, Sa`id bin Jubayr and Qatadah said;

تَّزَاوَرُ
(declining) means leaning.

Every time the sun rises on the horizon, its rays decline until there is nothing left in such a place when it reaches its zenith.

So Allah said,

وَإِذَا غَرَبَت تَّقْرِضُهُمْ ذَاتَ الشِّمَالِ

and when it set, turning away from them to the left,

meaning, it entered their cave from the left of its entrance, which means from the west.

This proves what we say, and it is clear to anyone who thinks about the matter and has some knowledge of astronomy and the paths of the sun, moon and stars. If the entrance of the cave faced east, nothing would have entered it when the sun set, and if it faced the direction of the Qiblah (in this case, south), nothing would have entered it at the time of sunrise or sunset, and the shadows would have leaned neither to the right nor the left. If it had faced west, nothing would have entered it at the time of sunrise, until after the sun had passed its zenith, and would have stayed until sunset. This supports what we have said, and to Allah is the praise.

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid and Qatadah said that "turning away from them" means,

that it would shine on them and then leave them.

Allah has told us this, and He wants us to understand it and ponder its meaning, but He did not tell us the location of this cave, i.e., in which country on earth it is, because there is no benefit for us in knowing that, and no legislative objective behind it. If there was any spiritual or religious interest that could be served by our knowing that, Allah and His Messenger would have taught us about it, as the Prophet said;

مَا تَرَكْتُ شَيْيًا يُقَرِّبُكُمْ إِلَى الْجَنَّةِ وَيُبَاعِدُكُمْ مِنَ النَّارِ إِلاَّ وَقَدْ أَعْلَمْتُكُمْ بِه

I have not left anything that will bring you closer to Paradise and keep you further away from Hell but I have certainly taught you about it.

So Allah has told us about the features of the cave, but He did not tell us where it is, and He said,

وَتَرَى الشَّمْسَ إِذَا طَلَعَت تَّزَاوَرُ عَن كَهْفِهِمْ

And you might have seen the sun, when it rose, declining from their cave.

Malik narrated from Zayd bin Aslam, "Leaning."

ذَاتَ الْيَمِينِ وَإِذَا غَرَبَت تَّقْرِضُهُمْ ذَاتَ الشِّمَالِ

وَهُمْ فِي فَجْوَةٍ مِّنْهُ

the right, and when it set, turning away from them to the left, while they lay in the midst of the cave.

meaning, the sun entered the cave without touching them, because if it had touched them, it would have burnt their bodies and clothes.

This was the view of Ibn `Abbas.

ذَلِكَ مِنْ ايَاتِ اللَّهِ

That is from the Ayat of Allah,

how He guided them to this cave where He kept them alive, and the sun and wind entered the cave preserving their bodies. Allah says,
ذَلِكَ مِنْ ايَاتِ اللَّهِ
(That is from the Ayat of Allah).

Then He says;

مَن يَهْدِ اللَّهُ فَهُوَ الْمُهْتَدِي

He whom Allah guides, he is the rightly-guided;

meaning that He is the One Who guided these young men to true guidance among their people, for the one whom Allah guides is truly guided,

وَمَن يُضْلِلْ فَلَن تَجِدَ لَهُ وَلِيًّا مُّرْشِدًا



but he whom He sends astray, for him you will find no guardian to lead him.

and the one whom Allah leaves astray will find no one to guide him