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فَبِمَا رَحْمَةٍ مِّنَ ٱللَّهِ لِنتَ لَهُمْ وَلَوْ كُنْتَ فَظّاً غَلِيظَ ٱلْقَلْبِ لاَنْفَضُّواْ مِنْ حَوْلِكَ فَٱعْفُ عَنْهُمْ وَٱسْتَغْفِرْ لَهُمْ وَشَاوِرْهُمْ فِي ٱلأَمْرِ فَإِذَا عَزَمْتَ فَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ يُحِبُّ ٱلْمُتَوَكِّلِينَ
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-Âl ‘Imrân ( آل عمران )

Tafsir al-Tustari

It was by the mercy of God that you [Muḥammad] were lenient with them…This means, ‘Due to an act of sympathy (ʿaṭf ) from God you dealt gently with them’, And if you had been harsh, with [your] tongue, and fierce of heart, they would have dispersed from about you, that is, ‘They would have separated themselves from you’. So pardon them, that is, ‘Overlook their faults’, and ask forgiveness for them, for their defeat on the Day of Uḥud. Consult them in the matter, that is, ‘Do not distance them from yourself because of their disobedience, but accommodate them through your graciousness (faḍl), for it is through Us that you pardon, through Us that you seek forgiveness, and to Us that you turn for guidance’. Then, when you are resolved, that is, ‘If you wish to carry something out after consultation’, put your trust in God…, that is, ‘Rely on God notwithstanding that [consultation], consign all your affairs to Him, and depend on Him without regard for anyone else.’ He [the Prophet] did not leave this world before God, Exalted is He, had disclosed to his heart realms of knowledge which were between him and God, Exalted is He, without any intermediary, due to his love of pondering and reflection, in reverent awareness (iʿtibār) of the omnipotence of his Lord, so that he attained an increase from God most High, just as He was commanded in the words of God, Exalted is He, But say: ‘My Lord! Increase me in knowledge’ [20:114]. Furthermore, he enjoined this upon his nation (umma), as is related from the Prophet in his words, ‘Consult those who are mindful of God (muttaqūn), who have preferred the Hereafter over this world, and who give you priority over themselves in your affairs.’ And he also said, ‘Consult the righteous scholars, and when you have made your resolve to carry something out, put your trust in God.’He [Sahl] said [in this regard]:Fraternise with brothers among the people who are mindful of God, and let the person whom you consult be one of those who fear God, Exalted is He. Let your word not be broken. And never be hostile to anyone until you know the states of his conduct with God, Exalted is He. If he has good conduct with God; then do not be hostile towards him, for certainly God, Exalted is He, will not forsake him for you. And if his conduct is bad, do not be hostile towards him [either] for his bad conduct will suffice him. He also said:Whoever is consulted and then gives advice that is contrary to his own opinion, God most High will strip him of his opinion, that is, He will dupe him into [believing] what he advised. [Moreover], whoever consults, puts his trust in God, carries out what he has resolved to do, but afterwards regrets [what has happened] has reproached God, Exalted is He.Concerning His words:


Tafsīr al-Tustarī, trans. Annabel Keeler and Ali Keeler
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