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يٰأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ ٱلْقِصَاصُ فِي ٱلْقَتْلَى ٱلْحُرُّ بِالْحُرِّ وَٱلْعَبْدُ بِٱلْعَبْدِ وَٱلأُنثَىٰ بِٱلأُنْثَىٰ فَمَنْ عُفِيَ لَهُ مِنْ أَخِيهِ شَيْءٌ فَٱتِّبَاعٌ بِٱلْمَعْرُوفِ وَأَدَآءٌ إِلَيْهِ بِإِحْسَانٍ ذٰلِكَ تَخْفِيفٌ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ وَرَحْمَةٌ فَمَنِ ٱعْتَدَىٰ بَعْدَ ذٰلِكَ فَلَهُ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ
-Al-Baqarah ( البقرة )

Al Qushairi Tafsir

[2:178] O you who believe, prescribed for you is retaliation, regarding the slain; a free man, for a free man, and a slave for a slave, and a female for a female. But if anything is pardoned any one in relation to his brother, let the pursuing be honorable. And let the payment to him be with kindliness; that is an alleviation given by your Lord, and a mercy; and for him who commits aggression after that - his is a painful chastisement.
The right of retaliation is prescribed in the law but forgiveness is better, so he who inclines to receiving his right in full is one who submits (muslim), while he who renounces seeking his right is one who acts in a beautiful way (muḥsin). The first is a possessor of worship and even servanthood. The second is the possessor of nobleheartedness (futuwwa) and even freedom.
Retaliation according to the people of knowledge (ahl al-ʿilm) entails bloodshed. According to the allusion of the people of the story (ahl al-qiṣṣa), their blood goes unavenged and their lives are good for nothing. He said:
The heart you caused to tremble
gives praise to you,
and the blood you made spill is proud
to have been spilled by you.
The blood of the lovers shed over the carpet of nearness is the perfume of the people of communion. The Prophet (ṣ) said: The color is the color of blood and the smell is the smell of musk.