A Critical Edition of Muśtafā Rushdī’s Quranic Exegesis on Śūra al-Naĥl, Āya 90


In Islamic history, Muslim scholars have interpreted the Quran fom manydifferent aspects. Most of the books ontafsīr(Quranic exegesis) are in the formof ‘complete’tafsīrs, i.e. fom Śūra al-Fātiĥa, the first chapter of the Quran, toŚūra al-Nas, the last chapter. Besides, there are also other commentaries onspecially distinct chapters and passages in the Quran. One of the most inter-preted passages is the renownedĀya al-Kursīin Śūra al-Baqara. Another one isŚūra al-Naĥl, Āya 90.
This study examines one of four separate works written on Śūra al-Naĥl, Āya90. All of the works are located in different libraries and remain in manuscriptform. One of these treatises includes Muśŧafā Rushdī’s commentary. Only oneknown manuscript of the treatise is extant and is registered in the SüleymaniyeLibrary under the nameTafsīr Āya Inna Allāh Ya’muru bi’l-‘Adl wa al-Iĥsān. Inthis treatise, written in Arabic, the author mentions the names of three scholarsas his sources: Qāđī Bayđāwī, Rūmī and Ibn al-‘Arabī.
This study consists of two sections. In the first section, I provide general infor-mation about commentaries on the specially distinct passages of the Quran thatwere written in classical times as well as in the present. Unfortunately, we findno substantial information about the life of the author. Rushdī seems to havelived during the time of the Ottoman Sultan Bayazid II. A list of his works canbe found in the first page of the small corpus, which also contains all the trea-tises he wrote. In the second section of this study is where I present a criticallyedited version of the manuscript.
As for Rushdī’s commentary, it consists of an introduction and two sections.The author in the introduction writes that, “The universal order depends onthe order of humankind. Matters of humankind are not regulated other than by politics. Politics is not sensible except through leadership (riyāsa). Presidency isnot actualized with the exception of wisdom (dirāya) and piety (diyāna). Be-cause, without them, governorship and patronage (siyāna) remain incomplete.”Following these literary phrases, Rushdī praises the Sultan by saying that, “Sul-tan Bayazid Khan is the Son of the Sultans.”
In the first section of the commentary, Rushdī interprets all the words andexpressions in the passage one by one. At the end, he says that all these are inaccord with the juristic scholars and other exegetical commentators. This sec-tion is considerably short as compared with the later section. Rushdī starts thesecond section with the statement, “According toAhl al-ishārafom amongstexperts and specialists,” which is in reference to Sufi scholars who interpretedthe Quran beyond its exoteric meaning, i.e.tafsīr bi’l-ishāra. He implies thathe will interpret the passage fom an esoteric standpoint, unlike the interpre-tations of the jurists and other scholars fomAhl al-žāhirwho pursue its literalmeanings. Rushdī then mentions “three positions” of a ruler (mālik) as, “thethings between himself and his desires (nafs),” “the things between himself andhis people”, and “the things between himself and Allah.” Aferwards, he treatsthese topics in three small chapters. He explains the terms fom the ruler’spoint of view in the first one, fom the people’s point of view in the second,and fom Allah’s point of view in the last one. Towards the end of the treatise,he excerpts fom Jalāl al-Dīn al-Rūmī and Muĥyī al-Dīn ibn al-‘Arabī. Thecommentary ends with a supplication to Allah. Muśŧafā Rushdī has four other
works besides this treatise ontafsīrwhich are as follows:
1-Fađāil-i Shūra. Istanbul: Süleymaniye Library, located in Hasan Husnu Pa-
sha Collection, 648, 4a.
2-Nāma-i Tablighiyya. Istanbul: Süleymaniye Library, located in Hasan Hus-
nu Pasha Collection, 648, 1b.
3-Tuhfa al-Mulūk wa al-Śalātīn: Istanbul: Süleymaniye Library, located in
Hasan Husnu Pasha Collection, 648, 16-88
4-Al-Āyat al-Dālla ‘alā Ādam Jawāz Muwāla al-Kuffār wa al-Nahy ‘anhu. Istan-
bul: Süleymaniye Library, located in Hasan Husnu Pasha Collection, 648, 4b.


Tafsīr Muśŧafā Rushdī Critical Edition Śūra al-Naĥl Āya 90.