Prophet Adam (PBUH)
Informing the Angels About Adam
Allah the Almighty revealed: And (remember) when your
Lord said to the angels: "Verily, I am going to place
(mankind) generations after generations on earth." They
said: 'Will You place therein those who will make mischief
therein and shed blood, - while we glorify You with
praises and thanks (Exalted be You above all that they
associate with You as partners) and sanctify You." He
(Allah) said: "I know that which you do not know." Surah
And He taught Adam all the names (of everything), then
He showed them to the angels and said: "Tell Me the
names of these if you are truthful." They (angels) said:
"Glory be to You, we have no knowledge except what You
have taught us. Verily, it is You, the All-Knower, the
He said: "0 Adam! Inform them of their names," and
when he had informed them of their names, He said: "Did
I not tell you that I know the Ghaib (unseen) in the
heavens and the earth, and I know what you reveal and
what you have been concealing?"
And (remember) when We said to the angels: "Prostrate
yourselves before Adam." And they prostrated except
Iblis, he refused and was proud and was one of the disbelievers
(disobedient to Allah)." Surah 2: 31-34
The Fall from Paradise
And We said: "0 Adam! Dwell you and your wife in the
Paradise and eat both of you freely with pleasure and
delight of things therein as wherever you will, but
come not near this tree or you both will be of the Zalimeen
Then the Satan made them slip therefrom (the Paradise),
and got them out from that in which they were. We said:
"Get you down, all, with enmity between yourselves.
On earth will be a dwelling place for you and an enjoyment
for a time." Surah 2: 35-36
Allah's Mercy on Adam
Then Adam received from his Lord Words. And his Lord
pardoned him (accepted his repentance). Verily, He is
the One Who forgives (accepts repentance), the Most
We said: "Get down all of you from this place (the
Paradise), then whenever there comes to you Guidance
from Me, and whoever follows My Guidance, there shall
be no fear on them, nor shall they grieve. But those
who disbelieve and belie Our Ayat (proofs, evidences,
verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) such are
the dwellers of the Fire, they shall abide therein forever."
Surah 2: 38-39
Iblis (Satan), Man's Enemy
Almighty Allah also revealed: And surely, We created
you (your father Adam) and then gave you shape (the
noble shape of a human being), then We told the angels,
"Prostrate to Adam'; and they prostrated, except Iblis,
he refused to be of those who prostrate.
(Allah) said: 'What prevented you (0 Iblis) that you
did not prostrate, when I commanded you?"
(Iblis) said: "I am better than him (Adam), You created
me from fire, and him You created from clay."
(Allah) said: "0 Iblis, get down from this (Paradise),
it is not for you to be arrogant here. Get out, for
you are of those humiliated and disgraced." Surah 7:
Iblis's Vow for Evil
(Iblis) said: "Allow me respite till the Day they are
raised up (i.e. The Day of Resurrection)."
(Allah) said: "You are of those allowed respite."
(Iblis) said: "Because You have sent me astray, surely
I will sit in wait against them (human beings) on Your
Straight Path. Then I will come to them from before
them and behind them, from their right and from their
left, and You will not find most of them as thankful
ones (i.e. they will not be dutiful to You)."
(Allah) said (to Iblis): "Get out from this (Paradise)
disgraced and expelled. Whoever of them (mankind) will
follow you, then surely I will fill Hell with you all."
Surah 7: 14-18
Eating from the Forbidden Tree
"And 0 Adam! Dwell you and your wife in Paradise, and
eat thereof as you both wish, but approach not this
tree otherwise you both will be of the Zalimeen (unjust
Then Satan whispered suggestions to them both in order
to uncover that which was hidden from them of their
private parts (before); he said: "Your Lord did not
forbid you this tree save you should become angels or
become of the immortals." And he (Satan) swore by Allah
to them both (saying): "Verily, I am one of the sincere
well-wishers for you both."
So he misled them with deception. Then when they tasted
of the tree, that which was hidden from them of their
shame (private parts) became manifest to them and they
began to stick together the leaves of Paradise over
themselves (in order to cover their shame). And their
Lord called out to them (saying): "Did I not forbid
you that tree and tell you: Verily, Satan is an open
enemy unto you?"
They said: "Our Lord! We have wronged ourselves. If
You forgive us not, and bestow not upon us Your Mercy,
we shall certainly be of the losers." Allah said: "Get
down, one of you an enemy to the other (i.e. Adam, Eve,
and Satan, etc.). On earth will be a dwelling-place
for you and an enjoyment, - for a time." He said: "Therein
you shall live, and therein you shall die, and from
it you shall be brought out (i.e., resurrected). Surah
Traditions About Iblis
There were many traditions about Iblis at the time
of the Prophet Muhammad . Ibn Masud, Ibn Abbas, and
a group of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad said
that Iblis had been the head of the angels in the worldly
heavens. Ibn Abbas said in one narration that his name
had been Azazil, and in another narration he said it
had been Al-Harith. Ibn 'Abbas also said that Iblis
was a jinn and that they had once been the keepers of
Paradise, with Iblis the most honorable, the most learned
and the most pious of them. Another tradition says that
he had been one of the famous four possessors of wings
(i.e. angels), before Allah transformed him into the
Iblis's Vow to Mislead - Surah 38
Allah Almighty recounts Iblis's disobedience in another
surah: (Remember) when your Lord said to the angels:
"Truly I am going to create man from clay. So when I
have fashioned him and breathed into him (his) soul
created by Me, then you fall down prostrate to him."
So the angels prostrated themselves, all of them: except
Iblis, he was proud and was one of the disbelievers.
(Allah) said: "0 Iblis! What prevents you from prostrating
yourself to one whom I have created with Both My Hands.
Are you too proud (to fall prostrate to Adam) or are
you one of the high exalted?" (Iblis) said "I am better
than he, You created me from fire, and You created him
(Allah) said: "Then get you from here, for verily,
you are outcast. And verily!, My Curse is on you till
the Day of Recompense." (Iblis) said: 'My Lord! Give
me then respite till the Day the (dead) are resurrected."
Allah said: "Verily! You are of those allowed respite
- till the Day of the time appointed." Iblis said: "By
Your Might, then I will surely mislead them all, - except
Your chosen slaves amongst them (faithful, obedient,
true believers of Islamic Monotheism)."
(Allah) said: "The truth is, and the truth I say, -
that I will fill Hell with you (Iblis) and those of
them (mankind) that follow you, together." Surah 38:
Commentary: Prostrating before Adam
We imagine when Allah the Almighty decided to create
Adam: He addressed His angels and told them to prostrate
before him. He did not mean to ask their opinion or
take their advice, for He is above that. Allah the Exalted
told them that He was going to create a vicegerent on
the earth who would have children and grandchildren
who would corrupt the earth and shed each other's blood.
That is why the angels said to Allah the Almighty: "Will
You place therein those who will make mischief therein
and shed blood!" Surah 2:30
Traditions about the Angels
There are old traditions about the angels before the
creation of Adam. According to Ibn Qatadah, it was said
that the angels were informed about the creation of
Adam and his progeny by the jinn who lived before Adam.
'Abdullah Ibn 'Umar said that the jinn had existed for
about two thousand years before Adam and then shed blood.
Therefore, Allah sent on them an army of angels that
drove them out to the depths of the seas. Thn Abi Hatim
narrated from Ali Jafar Al-Baqer that the angels were
informed that man would cause wickedness and shed blood
on earth. It was also said that they knew that no one
would be created on earth who would not be wicked and
Whether or not these traditions are correct, the angels
did understand that Allah would create a vicegerent
on earth. Allah the Almighty announced that He was going
to create a human being out of clay, that He would mold
him and blow His spirit into him, and then the angels
should prostrate before him.
Brief Version of the Creation of Man Abi Musa Al-Shaarai
narrated that Prophet Muhammad said: "Allah created
Adam from a handful of dust taken from different lands,
so the children of Adam have been created according
to the composition of the land. Therefore, from mankind
we have white, red, black and yellow ones; we have good
and evil, ease and sorrow, and what comes in between
Getting the Clay to Make Man
Ibn Masud and other companions of the Prophet said
that Allah the Almighty sent Gabriel onto the earth
to get Him clay therefrom. The earth said: "I seek refuge
in Allah from your decreasing my quantity or disfiguring
me." So Gabriel returned and did not take anything.
And he said: "My Lord, the land sought refuge in You,
and it was granted."
So Allah sent Michael for the same purpose, and the
land sought refuge with Allah and it was granted. So
he went back and said to Allah what Gabriel had said
Then Allah sent the Angel of Death, and the land sought
refuge in Allah. The angel said: "I also seek refuge
with Allah from returning without carrying out His command."
So he took clay from the face of the earth and mixed
it. He did not take from one particular place, but rather
he took white, red, and black clay (from different places).
The Angel of Death ascended with it, and He (Allah)
soaked the clay till it became sticky. Then Allah said
to the angels: "Truly, I am going to create man from
clay. So when I have fashioned him and breathed into
him (his) soul created by Me. Then you fall down prostrate
to him. Surah 38: 71-72
The Angels' Fear of Adam
So Allah shaped Adam into a human being, but he remained
a figure of clay for forty years. The angels went past
him. They were seized with fear by what they saw, and
Iblis felt this fear most. He used to pass by the figure
of Adam, buffeting it, which would make a sound like
pottery. Allah told us: He created man (Adam) from sounding
clay like the clay of pottery. Surah 55: 14
The Breathing of Allah's Spirit
When the time drew near to breathe the spirit into
Adam, as Allah the Almighty decreed, He commanded the
'When I breathe My spirit into him prostrate before
him." Allah breathed His spirit into Adam and when it
reached his head Adam sneezed. The angels said: "Say
all praise belongs to Allah." Adam repeated: "All praise
belongs to Allah." Allah said to him: "Your Lord has
granted you mercy." When the spirit reached his eyes,
Adam looked at the fruits of Paradise. When it reached
his abdomen Adam felt an appetite for food. He jumped
hurriedly before the spirit could reach his legs, so
that he could eat from the fruits of Paradise. Allah,
therefore, said: Man is created of haste. Surah 21:
And then: The angels prostrated themselves, all of
them together. Except Iblis - he refused to be among
the prostrators. Surah 15: 31-32
Another Version of Adam's Creation
Another version of the story relates that Allah took
a handful of the dust of the earth and mixed into it
the colors white, black, yellow, and red. That is the
reason why men are born different colors. When Allah
mixed the dust with water, it turned into potter's clay
that makes a sound. It was fermented and had a smell.
Iblis passed by, wondering what was going to be made
of that clay. From the clay Allah created Adam. He molded
his form with His own hands and blew His spirit into
him. Adam's body quivered as life was imbued into it.
Verily, His Command, when He intends a thing, is only
that He says to it, "Be!"- and it is! Surah 37: 82
The Reason for Adam's Creation
After this lesson about freedom, Adam learned another
lesson, one about knowledge. Adam realized that Iblis
was the symbol of evil in the universe and that the
angels were the symbol of good. However, he did not
yet know anything about himself. Then Allah made him
perceive his true identity, the reason for his creation,
and the secret of his glorification.
Allah the Exalted said: And He taught Adam all the
names (of everything). Surah 2: 31
Almighty Allah granted Adam the power to know the natures
of all things and to summarize them by names: that is
a bird, that is a star, that is a tree, that is a cloud,
etc. Allah implanted in Adam an insatiable need for
and love of knowledge and a desire to bequeath knowledge
to his children. This was the reason for his creation
and the secret in his glorification.
Establishing the Islamic Greeting
Abu Hurairah narrated that Prophet Muhammad said: "Allah
created Adam from dust after He mixed the clay and left
him for some time until it became sticky mud, after
which Allah shaped him. After that Allah left him till
it became like potter's clay. Iblis used to go past
him saying: 'You have been created for a great purpose.'
After that Allah breathed His spirit into him. The first
thing into which the spirit passed was his eye and then
his nose. He sneezed. Allah said: 'May your Lord have
mercy upon you, 0 Adam! Go to those angels and see what
they would say.' So Adam went and greeted them. They
replied saying: 'Peace be upon you and the mercy and
blessings of Allah.' Allah said: '0 Adam! This is your
greeting and that of your offspring. Sahih Al-Bukhari
Adam's Progeny Accept Allah
Allah the Almighty revealed: And (remember) when your
Lord brought forth from the children of Adam, from their
loins, their seed (or from Adam's loin his offspring)
and made them testify as to themselves (saying): "Am
I not your Lord?" They said: "Yes! We testify," lest
you should say on the Day of Resurrection: "Verily,
we have been unaware of this." Or lest you should say:
"It was only our fathers aforetime who took others as
partners in worship along with Allah, and we were (merely
their) descendants after them; will you then destroy
us because of the deeds of men who practiced Al-Batil
(i.e. polytheism and committing crimes and sins, invoking
and worshipping others besides Allah)?" Thus do We explain
the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs,
revelations, etc.) in detail, so that they may turn
(unto the truth).' Surah 7: 172-174
Adam's progeny declared: "Our Lord, we bear witness
that You are our Lord; we have no other Lord but Allah."
Allah raised their father Adam, and he looked at them
and saw those of them who were rich, those who were
poor, those who had good forms and those who did not.
Adam said: "0 Allah! I wish You to make Your servants
equal." Allah replied: "I love being thanked." Adam
saw among the prophets like lamps among his progeny.
The Prophet's Covenant
Almighty Allah declared: And (remember) when We took
from the Prophets their covenant, and from you (0 Muhammad),
and from Noah, Abraham, Moses, and Jesus - son of Mary.
We took from them a strong covenant. Surah 33: 7
In another verse Allah the Exalted commanded: "So set
you (0 Muhammad) your face towards the religion of pure
Islamic Monotheism Hanifan (worship none but Allah Alone)
Allah's Fitrah (i.e. Allah's Islamic Monotheism), with
which He has created mankind. No change let there be
in khalqillah (i.e. the Religion of Allah - Islamic
Monotheism), that is the straight religion, but most
men know not." Surah 30:30
Similarity between Adam and Jesus (PBUT)
Allah the Almighty declared: Verily, the likeness of
Jesus, in Allah's Sight is the likeness of Adam. He
created him from dust, then (He) said to him: "Be!"
- and he was. Surah 3: 59
Angels' Prostate in Front of Adam
The Meaning of the Angels' Prostration Adam opened
his eyes and saw all the angels prostrating before him
except one being who was standing at a distance. Adam
did not know what kind of creature it was that did not
prostrate before him, nor did he know its name. Iblis
was standing with the angels so as to be included in
the command given to them, but he was not one of them.
He was a jinn, and, as such he was supposed to be inferior
to the angels. What is clear is that this prostration
was to show respect and did not mean that the angels
were worshipping Adam. Prostrating, in worship is done
only for Allah.
Iblis's Refusal to Prostrate - Surah 15
Almighty Allah recounted the story of Iblis's refusal
to prostrate before Adam: And (remember) when your Lord
said to the angels: "I am going to create a man (Adam)
from sounding clay of altered black smooth mud. So,
when I have fashioned him completely and breathed into
him (Adam) the soul which I created for him, then fall
(you) down prostrating yourselves unto him." So, the
angels prostrated themselves, all of them together.
Except Iblis, - he refused to be among the prostrators.
(Allah) said: "0 Iblis! What is your reason for not
being among the prostrators?" (Iblis) said: "I am not
the one to prostrate myself to a human being, whom You
created from sounding clay of altered black smooth mud."
(Allah) said: "Then, get out from here, for verily,
you are Rajim (an outcast or a cursed one). And verily,
the curse shall be upon you till the Day of Recompense
(i.e. the Day of Resurrection)." Surah 15: 28-35
Iblis's Reason for not Prostrating
In another surah Almighty Allah recounted it thus:
And surely, We created you (your father Adam) and then
gave you shape (the noble shape of a human being), then
We told the angels, "Prostrate to Adam" and they prostrated,
except Iblis, he refused to be of those who prostrate.
(Allah) said: 'What prevented you (0 Iblis) that you
did not prostrate, when I commanded you?" Iblis said:
"I am better than him (Adam), You created me from fire,
and him You created from clay." Allah said: "(0 Iblis)
get down from this (Paradise), it is not for you to
be arrogant here. Get out, for you are of those humiliated
and disgraced." (Iblis) said: "Allow me respite till
the Day they are raised up (i.e. The Day of Resurrection)."
Allah said: "You are of those allowed respite." Surah
Commentary: Iblis's Refusal to Prostrate
Ibn Jarir reported that Muhammad Ibn Sirin said that
the first one to reach a conclusion by reasoning was
Iblis and that the sun and moon were not worshipped
except through this method.
This means that Iblis tried to compare himself to Adam.
He believed that he was more honorable than Adam. Therefore,
he abstained from prostrating, even though Allah had
commanded him to do so, just as He had commanded the
angels. If an analogy is made, we see that Iblis is
vain. For indeed, clay is better than fire because in
it can be found the qualities of calmness, clemency,
perseverance, and growth; whereas in fire can be found
heedlessness, insignificance, haste, and incineration.
Iblis tried in vain to justify his refusal: "Shall
I prostrate to one whom You created from clay?" (Iblis)
said: "See? This one whom You have honored above me,
if You give me respite (keep me alive) to the Day of
Resurrection, I will surely seize and mislead his offspring
(by sending them astray) all but a few!" Surah 17: 62
Adam's Perspective of Iblis
Adam was following what was happening around him and
had feelings of love, awe, and astonishment. Deep love
of Allah, Who had created and glorified him and Who
had made His angels prostrate before him. Awe of the
Creator's wrath when He excluded Iblis from His mercy.
Adam was surprised by this creature, Iblis, who abhorred
him without even knowing him, and who imagined himself
better than Adam without having proved that he was worthier.
What a strange creature Iblis was, and how strange was
his excuse for not prostrating!
He (Iblis) imagined that fire is better than clay,
but how did he get such an idea? Such knowledge is exclusive
to Allah Who created fire and clay and Who knows which
is the better of the two.
From the dialogue Adam realized that Iblis was a creature
characterized by cunning and ingratitude. He then knew
that Iblis was his eternal enemy. He was greatly astonished
at Iblis's audacity and Allah's tolerance. Immediately
after his creation, Adam witnessed the large amount
of freedom that Allah gives to His commissioned creatures.
Commentary: Allah's Freedom to Creatures
Allah knew that Iblis was not going to obey Him in
prostrating before Adam. Allah could have totally annihilated
him or turned him into a handful of dust or stifled
the refusal in his mouth. Yet, Allah gives His commissioned
creatures absolute freedom even to the extent that they
can refuse Allah the Almighty's commands. He grants
them the freedom of denial, disobedience, and even disagreement
His kingdom will not diminish if the disbelievers do
not believe in Him, nor will it be extended if many
people believe in Him. On the contrary, the disbelievers
will lose, and the believers will gain, but Allah is
above all of that.
Adam Learns Names After Adam had learned the
names of all things, along with their properties and
uses, Allah presented them to the angels and said: "Tell
Me the names of these if you are truthful." Surah 2:31
The angels admitted their inability: "Glory be to You,
we have no knowledge except what You have taught us.
Verily, it is You, The All-Knowing, The All-Wise. "
Allah Almighty then turned to Adam: "0 Adam! inform
them of their names," and when he had informed them
of their names, He said: "Did I not tell you that I
know the Ghaib (unseen) in the heavens and the earth,
and I know what you reveal and what you have been concealing?"
Allah wanted the angels to know that He knew of their
astonishment when He had told them about the creation
of Adam and that He also knew of their confusion which
they had not revealed, as well as what Iblis had concealed
of his disobedience and ingratitude.
Angels Acknowledge Adam's Knowledge
The angels realized that Adam was the creature who
knew what they did not know and that his capacity to
learn was his noblest quality. His knowledge included
knowledge of the Creator which we call Faith or Islam,
as well as the knowledge that he would need to inhabit
and master the earth, and all kinds of worldly knowledge
which are included in this.
Creation of Eve
The Reason for Eve's Creation Adam knew the names of
everything. Sometimes he talked to the angels, but they
were preoccupied with worshiping Almighty Allah. Therefore,
Adam felt lonely. One day he slept and when he awoke
he found, near his head, a woman gazing at his face
with beautiful, tender eyes. Perhaps they had the following
Adam: You were not here before I slept.
He: From what...?
She: I came out of you. Allah created me while you
were asleep. Do you not desire to restore me to you
while you are awake?
He: Why has Allah created you?
She: To be your solace.
He: Thanks to Allah I was feeling lonely.
The angels asked him her name. He replied: "Eve (Hawwa)."
They asked: "Why did you call her Eve?" Adam said: "Because
she was created of me, and I am a living being." (The
root of the name Hawwa" means "living things.")
Adam Sees Eve
Ibn Abbas and a group of the companions of the Prophet
narrated that when Iblis was sent out of Paradise and
Adam was accommodated therein, Adam was alone in Paradise
and did not have a partner from whom he could get tranquillity.
He slept for some time and when he woke up, he saw a
woman whom Allah had created from his ribs. So he asked
her: "Who are you?" She replied: "A woman." He asked:
"Why have you been created?" She replied: "So that you
could find tranquillity in me." The angels, trying to
find out the extent of his knowledge, asked him: "What
is her name, 0 Adam?" He replied: "Eve." They asked:
"Why was she so named?" He replied: "Because she was
created from something living."
Muhammad Ibn Ishaaq and Ibn 'Abbas related that Eve
was created from the shortest left rib of Adam while
he was sleeping, and after a while she was clothed with
flesh. That is why Allah the Exalted said: 0 Mankind!
Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single
person (Adam) and from him (Adam) He created his wife
(Eve), and from them both He created many men and women.
Surah 4: 1
Allah also said: It is He Who has created you from
a single person (Adam), and (then) He created from him
his wife (Eve), in order that he might enjoy the pleasure
of living with her. Surah 7: 189
The Location of Adam and Eve's Paradise
The location of this Paradise is unknown to us. The
Qur'an did not reveal it, and the commentators had five
different opinions. Some said that it was the paradise
of our refuge and that its place was heaven. Others
negated that statement because if it was the paradise
of refuge, Iblis would have been forbidden admission
and disobedience would have been forbidden as well.
Still others said that it was another paradise that
was created by Allah for Adam and Eve. A fourth group
said that it was a paradise on the earth, located in
a high place. Another group of commentators accept what
was in the Qur'an without questioning where this paradise
was located. We agree with this last opinion, as the
lesson we learn from its location is immaterial compared
to the lesson we learn from the events that took place
The Forbidden Tree
Allah's Warning to Adam and Eve Adam and Eve were admitted
to Paradise and there they lived the dream of all human
beings. Allah permitted them to approach and enjoy everything
except one tree, that might have been the Tree of Pain
or the Tree of Knowledge. Allah forbade them before
they were given abode in Paradise: "0 Adam! Dwell you
and your wife in the Paradise and eat both of you freely
with pleasure and delight of things therein as wherever
you will, but come not near this tree or you both will
be of the Zalimeen (wrong-doers). " Surah 2: 35
Adam and Eve understood that they were forbidden to
eat the fruit of that tree. Adam was, however, a human
being, and man tends to forget. His heart changes and
his will weakens. Iblis summoned all the envy within
him and took advantage of Adam's humanity to exploit
him. He started to whisper to him day after day, coaxing
him: "Shall I guide you to the Tree of Immortality and
the Eternal Kingdom?" And he said to them: "Your Lord
did not forbid you this tree save you should become
angels or become of the immortals." And he (Satan) swore
by Allah to them both (saying): "Verily, I am one of
the sincere well-wishers for you both." Surah 7: 20-21
Adam asked himself: "What will happen if I eat from
this tree? It might truly be the Tree of Immortality."
His dream was to live forever in the pure innocence
Adam and Eve Eat from the Forbidden Tree Years went
by, and Adam and Eve were preoccupied with thoughts
of that tree. Then, one day, they decided to eat of
its fruit. They forgot that Allah had warned them not
to approach it and that Iblis was their sworn enemy.
Adam stretched out his hand, picked one of the fruits,
and offered it to Eve. They both ate of the forbidden
Allah Almighty told us: "So he Satan misled them with
deception. "2 Surah 7: 22 Allah also said: Thus did
Adam disobey his Lord, so he went astray. Surah 20:
Old Testament Version - The Forbidden Tree
According to the Old Testament, Eve was tempted by
the serpent to eat of the forbidden tree. She ate because
of the words of the serpent and fed Adam some of it.
At that moment, their eyes were opened to the fact that
they were naked, and they took the leaves of the fig
tree to cover themselves. Wahb Ibn Munabah said that
their clothing (before their sin) was made of light
on the private parts of both of them.
This story in the Old Testament is a falsification
and deception. Allah the Almighty revealed: "0 Children
of Adam! Let not Satan deceive you, as he got your parents
(Adam and Eve) out of Paradise, stripping them of their
raiments; to show them their private parts. Verily he
and Qabiluhu (his soldiers from the jinn or his tribe)
see you from where you cannot see them. Verily, We made
the devils protectors and helpers) for those who believe
not. " Surah 7: 27
Adam and Eve Ask for Forgiveness
Adam had hardly finished eating when he felt his heart
contract, and he was filled with pain, sadness, and
shame. The surrounding atmosphere had changed and the
internal music had stopped. He discovered that he and
his wife were naked, so they both started cutting tree
leaves with which to cover themselves.
Allah the Almighty addressed him: "Did I not forbid
you that tree and tell you: Verily, Satan is an open
enemy unto you?" They said: "Our Lord! We have wronged
ourselves. If You forgive us not, and bestow not upon
us Your Mercy, we shall certainly be of the losers."
(Allah) said: "Get down, one of you an enemy to the
other (i.e., Adam, Eve, and Satan, etc.). On earth will
be a dwelling place for you and an enjoyment, - for
a time." He said: "Therein you shall live, and therein
you shall die, and from it you shall be brought out
(i.e. resurrected)." Surah 7: 22-25
Various Stories About Adam and Eve's Mistake
Again there are old stories about these events. Al-Hafez
Ibn 'Asaker narrated that Allah commanded two angels
to remove Adam from His holy proximity. So Gabriel stripped
him of the crown on his head, and Michael took the diadem
from his forehead. Adam thought that his punishment
had been hastened and bowed down crying: "Forgiveness!
Forgiveness!" So Allah asked: "Are you running away
from Me?" Adam replied: "No, my Lord, but I am shy of
Abdul Rahman Ibn Amru Al-Awzaiy said that Adam spent
one hundred years in Paradise. In another narration
it was said that he spent sixty years. Ibn Asaker reported
that Adam wept for sixty years for his loss of Paradise
and seventy years for his mistake, and he wept for another
seventy years when his son was killed.
Adam and Eve's Decent from Paradise
They left Paradise and descended upon the earth. Adam
was sad and Eve was crying. Allah accepted their repentance
because it was sincere, and He told them that the earth
would be their realm and origin where they would live
and die and whence they would come on the Day of Judgment.
Condensed Story of Adam and Allah's Promise
Allah the Almighty recounted this third lesson Adam
learned in Paradise: And indeed We made a covenant with
Adam before, but he forgot, and We found on his part
no firm will-power. And (remember) when We said to the
angels "Prostrate yourselves to Adam." They prostrated
(all) except Iblis, who refused. Then We said: "0 Adam!
Verily, this is an enemy to you and to your wife. So
let him not get you both out of Paradise, so that you
be distressed in misery. Verily, you have (a promise
from Us) that you will never be hungry therein nor naked.
And you (will) suffer not from thirst therein nor from
the sun's heat."
Then Satan whispered to him, saying: "0 Adam! Shall
I lead you to the Tree of Eternity and to a kingdom
that will never waste away?" Then they both ate of the
tree, and so their private parts appeared to them, and
they began to stick on themselves the leaves from Paradise
for their covering. Thus did Adam disobey his Lord,
so he went astray. Then his Lord chose him, and turned
to him with forgiveness, and gave him guidance.
(Allah) said: "Get you down (upon the earth), both
of you, together (from Paradise), some of you are an
enemy to some others. Then if there comes to you guidance
from Me, then whoever follows My Guidance shall neither
go astray, nor fall into distress and misery. But whosoever
turns away from My Reminder (i.e. neither believes in
this Qur'an nor acts on its orders, etc.) verily, for
him is a life of hardship, and We shall raise him up
blind on the Day of Resurrection."
He will say: "0 my Lord! Why have you raised me up
blind, while I had sight (before)." (Allah) will say:
"Like this, Our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons,
signs, revelations, etc.) came unto you, but you disregarded
them (i.e. you left them, did not think deeply in them,
and you turned away from them), and so this Day, you
will be neglected (in the Hell-Fire, away from Allah's
And thus do We requite him who transgresses beyond
bounds i.e. commits the great sins and disobeys his
Lord (Allah) and believes not in His Messengers, and
His revealed Books, like this Quran. etc., and believes
not in the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons,
signs, revelations, etc.) of his Lord, and the torment
of the Hereafter is far more severe and more lasting.
" Surah 20: 115-127
Commentary: Why Adam and Eve Decended
Some people believe that the reason why mankind does
not dwell in Paradise is that Adam was disobedient and
that if it had not been for this sin, we could have
been there all along. These are naive fictions because
when Almighty Allah wanted to create Adam, He said to
the angels: "I shall make a vicegerent on the earth."
He did not say: "I shall make a vicegerent in Paradise."
Adam's descent on earth, then, was not due to degradation
but rather it was a dignified descent. Allah knew that
Adam and Eve would eat of the tree and descend to earth.
He knew that Satan would rape their innocence. That
experience was essential for their life on earth; it
was a cornerstone of their vicegerency. It was meant
to teach Adam, Eve, and their progeny that it was Satan
who had caused them to be expelled from Paradise and
that the road to Paradise can only be reached by obedience
to Allah and enmity to Satan.
Commentary: Adam's Free Will
Could it be said that Adam and the rest of mankind
were predestined to sin and to be expelled from Paradise
and sent to the earth? In fact, this fiction is as naive
as the first one. Adam had complete free will, and he
bore the consequences of his deed. He disobeyed by eating
of the forbidden tree, so Allah dismissed him from Paradise.
His disobedience does not negate his freedom. On the
contrary, it is a consequence of it.
The truth of the matter is that Allah knew what was
going to happen, as He always knows the outcome of events
before they take place. However, Allah does not force
things to happen. He grants free will to His human creatures.
On that He bases His supreme wisdom in populating the
earth, establishing the vicegerents, and so on.
Adam understood his third lesson. He knew now in a
practical way that Iblis was his enemy, the cause of
his losing the blessing of living in Paradise, and the
cause of his distress. Adam also understood that Allah
punishes disobedience and that the way to Paradise has
to be through submission to the will of Allah. And he
learned from Almighty Allah to ask for forgiveness.
Allah accepted Adam's repentance and forgave him. He
then sent him to the earth as His first messenger.
Encounter Between Adam and Moses (PBUT) - Hadith Abu
Hurairah narrated that Allah's Messenger said: "Adam
and Moses argued with each other. Moses said to Adam:
Your sin expelled you from Paradise. Adam said to him:
'You are Moses whom Allah selected as His messenger
and as the one to whom He spoke directly. Yet you blame
me for a thing which had already been written in my
fate before my Creation?' Allah's Prophet Muhammad said
twice: "So, Adam outclassed Moses."
Umar Ibn Al-Khattab also narrated that Prophet Muhammad
said: "Moses said: 'My Lord! May I see Adam who removed
us and himself from the Paradise?' So Allah made him
see Adam, and he said to him: 'Are you Adam?' Adam said:
'Yes.' And he said: 'Were you the one in whom Allah
breathed His spirit, and before whom He bowed His angels,
and to whom He taught the names of all things?' Adam
answered: 'Yes.' So Moses said: 'What made you remove
us and yourself from Paradise?' Adam said unto him:
'Who are you?' He said: 'I am Moses.' Adam said: 'So
you are Moses the prophet of the Children of Israel.
Were you the one Allah spoke to directly?' Moses answered:
'Yes.' Adam said: 'Why do you blame me for a matter
which Allah had predestined?"' So Allah's Prophet Muhammad
said twice. "Adam outclassed Moses."
Variation on Where Adam, Eve, and Iblis Descended
There are many traditions concerning the place of Adam's
descent upon earth. Ibn Abi Hatim narrated that Ibn
Abbas said: "Adam descended on land called 'Dihna' between
Mecca (Makkah) and Taif." Al-Hassan said that Adam descended
in India, Eve in Jeddah (Saudi Arabia), Iblis in Bodistiman
(Iraq), and the serpent in Ashahan (Iran). This was
also reported by Ibn Hatim.
Assady related that Adam descended with the Black Stone1
in India (A large black stone set into the wail of the
Kaba in Mecca; it is said to have come from Paradise),
and he had a handful of the seeds of Paradise. He sowed
them in India and they grew into the fragrant tree therein.
Lbn Umar said that Adam descended on As-Safa and Eve
on Al-Marwa (As-Safa and Al-Marwa are the names of two
mountains in the vicinity of the Sacred House in Mecca;
part of the rites of pilgrimage (Hajj) Include pacing
between these two hills in commemoration of Hajar's
search for water). This was also reported by Ibn Hatim.
AbdulRazzaq reported that Abi Musa Al-Shari said that
when Allah ordered Adam to descend from Paradise to
earth, He taught him the making of everything and provided
him with the crops from Paradise.
Abu Hurairah narrated that Prophet Muhammad said: "The
best of days on which the sun has risen is Friday. On
this day Adam was created, and on this day he was descended
Adam's Life on Earth
Adam knew he bade farewell to peace when he left Paradise.
On earth he had to face conflict and struggle. No sooner
had one ended than another began. He also had to toil
to sustain himself. He had to protect himself with clothes
and weapons and protect his wife and children from the
Above all, he had to struggle with the spirit of evil.
Satan, the cause of his expulsion from Paradise, continued
to beguile him and his children in an effort to have
them thrown into the eternal hellfire. The battle between
good and evil is continuous, but those who follow Allah's
guidance should fear nothing, while those who disobey
Allah and follow Iblis will be damned along with him.
Adam grasped all of this, and, with the knowledge of
this suffering, he started his life on the earth. The
only thing that allayed his grief was that he was master
of the earth and had to make it yield to him. He was
the one who had to perpetuate, cultivate, construct
and populate the earth. He was also the one who had
to procreate and raise children who would change and
improve the world.
The First Four Children
The pinnacle of earthly bliss was reached when Adam
and Eve witnessed the birth of their first children,
a set of twins. Adam was a devoted father and Eve a
contented mother. The twins were Cain (Qabil) and his
sister. Later Eve gave birth to a second set of twins,
Abel (Habil) and his sister. The family enjoyed the
bounties and fruits of the earth provided by their Lord.
The children grew up to be strong and healthy young
adults. Cain tilled the land, while Abel raised cattle.
The time arrived when the two young men desired life
partners. This was part of Allah's plan for mankind,
to multiply and form nations with different cultures
and colors. Allah revealed to Adam that he should marry
each son to the twin sister of the other. Adam instructed
his children according to Allah's command, but Cain
was displeased with the partner chosen for him, for
Abel's twin-sister was not as beautiful as his own.
Commentary: Cain's Disobedience
It appears that since the beginning of time, physical
beauty has been a factor in the attraction between men
and women. This attraction caused Cain to envy his brother
Abel. He rebelled against Allah's command by refusing
to accept his father's advice.
At first glance Cain's rebellion might appear strange,
but we should remember that, although man has a pure
nature, the potential for dichotomy exists. In other
words, he has both good and bad qualities. He can become
greedy, covetous, possessive, selfish and even destructive.
Man is, therefore, capable of seeking self-satisfaction
even if it leads to failure in this life and in the
hereafter. The path to goodness lies in harnessing the
enemy within him, his baser self, by controlling evil
thoughts and deeds and practicing moderation in his
desires and actions. His reward then will be the delights
of this world and the hereafter. Thus Allah tests us
through our divided nature.
Cain's Jealousy of Abel
Adam was in a dilemma. He wanted peace and harmony
in his family, so he invoked Allah for help. Allah commanded
that each son offer a sacrifice, and he whose offering
was accepted would have right on his side. Abel offered
his best camel, while Cain offered his worst grain.
His sacrifice was not accepted by Allah because of his
disobedience to his father and the insincerity in his
This enraged Cain even further. Realizing that his
hopes of marrying his own beautiful sister were fading,
he threatened his brother: "I will kill you! I refuse
to see you happy while I remain unhappy!"
Abel, feeling sorry for his brother, replied: "It would
be more proper for you, my brother, to search for the
cause of your unhappiness and then walk in the way of
peace. Allah accepts deeds only from those who serve
and fear Him, not from those who reject His commands."
The First Death
Abel was intelligent, obedient, and always ready to
obey the will of Allah. This contrasted sharply with
his brother, who was arrogant, selfish and disobedient
to his Lord. Abel did not fear his brother's threats,
but neither did he want his brother to be hurt. Allah
had blessed Abel with purity and compassion. Hoping
to allay the hatred seething in his brother, Abel said:
"My brother, you are deviating from the right path and
are sinful in your decisions. It is better that you
repent to Allah and forget about your foolish threat.
But if you do not, then I will leave the matter in the
hands of Allah. You alone will bear the consequence
of your sin, for the Fire is the reward of the wrong-doers."
This brotherly plea did nothing to lessen the hatred
in Cain's heart, nor did he show fear of Allah's punishment.
Even familial considerations were cast aside. Cain struck
his brother with a stone, killing him instantly. This
was the first death and the first criminal act committed
by man on earth.
When Abel had not appeared for some time, Adam began
to search for him but found no trace of his beloved
son. He asked Cain about Abel's whereabouts. Cain insolently
replied that he was not his brother's keeper nor his
protector. From these words his father understood that
Abel was dead and Adam was filled with grief.
The First Burial
Meanwhile, Cain did not know what to do with his brother's
corpse. He carried it on his back wandering from place
to place, trying to hide it. His anger had now subsided,
and his conscience was saddled with guilt. He was tiring
under the burden of the corpse which had started to
have a stench. As a mercy, and to show that dignity
could be retained even in death, Allah sent two ravens
that began fighting, causing the death of one. The victorious
bird used its beak and claws to dig a hole in the ground,
rolled its victim into it and covered it with sand.
Witnessing this, Cain was overcome with shame and remorse.
"Woe unto me!" he exclaimed. "I was unable to do what
this raven has done, that is to hide my brother's corpse."
Cain then buried his brother. This was also the first
burial of man.
The First Murder - from Qur'an
Allah the Almighty revealed: And (0 Muhammad) recite
to them (the Jews) the story of the two sons of Adam
Abel and Cain - Habil and Qabil respectively in truth;
when each offered a sacrifice (to Allah), it was accepted
from the one but not from the other. The latter said
to the former: "I will surely kill you."
The former said: "Verily, Allah accepts only from those
who are Al-Muttaqeen (the pious). If you do stretch
your hand against me to kill me, I shall never stretch
my hand against you to kill you, for I fear Allah; the
Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn, and all that exists).
Verily I intend to let you draw my sin on yourself as
well as yours, then you will be one of the dwellers
of the Fire, and that is the recompense of the Zalimeen
(polyt heists, and wrong-doers)."
So the Nafs (self) of the other (latter one) encouraged
him and made fair-seeming to him the murder of his brother;
he murdered him and became one of the losers. Then Allah
sent a crow who scratched the ground to show him to
hide the dead body of his brother. He (the murderer)
said: "Woe to me! Am I not even able to be as this crow
and to hide the dead body of my brother?" Then he became
one of those who regretted. Surah 5:27-31
The First Murder - from Various Hadith
Ibn Abbas, Ibn Masud and a group of the companions
of the Prophet related that inter-marriage of the male
of one pregnancy with the female of another had been
in practice among Adam's children. Abel wanted to marry
Cain's sister, but Cain wanted her for himself because
she was very beautiful. Adam ordered him to give her
in marriage to his brother, but he refused. So Adam
ordered both of them to offer a sacrifice, then went
to Mecca (Makkah) to perform the pilgrimage. After Adam
had left, they offered their sacrifices: Abel offered
a fat lamb - he was a shepherd - while Cain offered
a bundle of the worst grain. A fire descended and devoured
Abel's sacrifice, leaving that of Cain, so he became
angry and said: "I will surely kill you so that you
will not marry my sister." Abel replied: "Allah accepts
from those who fear Him."
According to Abu Jaafar Al-Baqer, Adam was watching
their offering and was sure that Abel's sacrifice would
be accepted. Cain complained to Adam that the acceptance
was due to his supplication for Abel and that he had
not done the same for him, so he promised his father
to settle the matter between himself and his brother.
One night, Abel was late returning from tending his
flock. Adam sent Cain to see what had happened to him.
When he found him, he glared at him saying: "Yours was
accepted, and mine was not." Abel replied: "Allah only
accepts from the Allah-fearing." Cain became angry on
hearing this and hit him with a piece of iron that was
with him, thus killing him. In another version it was
said that he killed him with a rock to the head while
he was sleeping.
Adam Preaches to His Children
Adam was utterly grief-stricken by the loss of his
two sons: one was dead, the other was won over by the
devil. Adam prayed for his son and turned to mundane
matters, for he had to toil for his sustenance. At the
same time, he was a prophet, advising his children and
grandchildren, telling them about Allah, and calling
them to believe in Him. He told them about Iblis and
warned them by recounting his own experience with the
devil and of how the devil had tempted Cain to kill
Adam's Successor, Seth
Years and years passed, Adam grew old, and his children
spread all over the earth. Muhammad Ibn Ishaq related:
that when Adam's death drew near, he appointed his son
Seth (Shiith) to be his successor, and taught him the
hours of the day and night along with their appropriate
acts of worship. He also foretold to him the flood that
Abu Dhar narrated that Prophet Muhammad said: "Allah
sent down one hundred four psalms, of which fifty were
sent down to Seth."
Abdullah Ibn Al-Iman Ahmad Ibn Hanbal narrated that
Ubai Ibn Kab said: "When Adam's death was near, he said
to his children: '0 my children, indeed, I feel an appetite
for the fruits of Paradise.' So they went away searching
for what Adam had requested. They met with the angels,
who had with them his shroud and what he was to be embalmed
with. They said to them: '0 Children of Adam, what are
you searching for? What do you want? Where are you going?'
They said: 'Our father is sick and has an appetite for
the fruits of Paradise.' The angels said to them: 'Go
back, for your father is going to meet his end soon.'
So they returned (with the angels), and when Eve saw
them she recognized them. She tried to hide herself
behind Adam. He said to her: 'Leave me alone. I came
before you; do not go between me and the angels of my
Lord.' So they took his soul, embalmed and wrapped him,
dug the grave and laid him in it. They prayed on him
and put him in his grave, saying: '0 Children of Adam,
this is your tradition at the time of death."'
Before his death Adam reassured his children that Allah
would not leave man alone on the earth, but would send
His prophets to guide them. The prophets would have
different names, traits and miracles, but they would
be united in one thing: the call to worship Allah alone.
This was Adam's bequest to his children. Adam finished
speaking and closed his eyes. Then the angels entered
his room and surrounded him. When he recognized the
Angel of Death among them, his heart smiled peacefully.
Successor After Adam
After Adam's death, his son Seth (Shiith) took over
the responsibilities of prophethood, according to a
hadith narrated by Abu Dhar. Abu Dhar also narrated
that Prophet Muhammad said: "Allah sent down one hundred
four psalms, of which fifty were sent down to Seth."
When the time of his death came, Seth's son Anoush succeeded
him. He in turn, was succeeded by his son Qinan, who
was succeeded by his son Mahlabeel. The Persians claim
that Mahlabeel was the King of the Seven Regions, that
he was the first one to cut down trees to build cities
and large forts and that he built the cities of Babylonia.
He reigned for a period of forty years. When he died
his duties were taken over by his son Yard, who on his
death, bequeathed them to his son Khonoukh, who is Idris
according to the majority of the scholars (Ulama).