Remembering The Similar Verses [Mutashaabihaat] – Part 4

In parts one, two, and three you learnt different rules, patterns or formulas you can use to remember similar verses (the Mutashābihāt) in the Qur'ān as you memorise. I also shared reversal patterns, incremental patterns and grouping methods in sūrah yasīn.

There are more than 22+ different patterns or techniques that can be used to remember similar verses when you are memorising or have complete memorisation of the Qur'ān. So far I have shared 8 to 11 of these.

Let's look at some other methods you can make use of to help you remember any similar verses (Mutashābihāt).

The Masculine vs The Feminine

There are some examples of where you can have similar verses that use a specific word differently in two different places. The difference between them is that one is usually masculine and the other is feminine. The pattern is usually masculine first and then feminine in the next similar verse.

For example:

Example 1
16:66
وَإِنَّ لَكُمْ فِى ٱلْأَنْعَـٰمِ لَعِبْرَةًۭ ۖ نُّسْقِيكُم مِّمَّا فِى بُطُونِهِۦ مِنۢ بَيْنِ فَرْثٍۢ وَدَمٍۢ لَّبَنًا خَالِصًۭا سَآئِغًۭا لِّلشَّـٰرِبِينَ
And there is certainly a lesson for you in cattle: We give you to drink of what is in their bellies, from between digested food and blood: pure milk, pleasant to drink.
23:21
وَإِنَّ لَكُمْ فِى ٱلْأَنْعَـٰمِ لَعِبْرَةًۭ ۖ نُّسْقِيكُم مِّمَّا فِى بُطُونِهَا وَلَكُمْ فِيهَا مَنَـٰفِعُ كَثِيرَةٌۭ وَمِنْهَا تَأْكُلُونَ
And there is certainly a lesson for you in cattle, from whose bellies We give you ˹milk˺ to drink, and in them are many other benefits for you, and from them you may eat.

The word here is "Butoon" for bellies but the attached pronoun is first a masculine form (hu) and then it's feminine (ha).

Example 2
32:20
وَأَمَّا ٱلَّذِينَ فَسَقُوا۟ فَمَأْوَىٰهُمُ ٱلنَّارُ ۖ كُلَّمَآ أَرَادُوٓا۟ أَن يَخْرُجُوا۟ مِنْهَآ أُعِيدُوا۟ فِيهَا وَقِيلَ لَهُمْ ذُوقُوا۟ عَذَابَ ٱلنَّارِ ٱلَّذِى كُنتُم بِهِۦ تُكَذِّبُونَ
But as for those who are rebellious, the Fire will be their home. Whenever they try to escape from it, they will be forced back into it, and will be told, “Taste the Fire’s torment, which you used to deny.”
34:42
فَٱلْيَوْمَ لَا يَمْلِكُ بَعْضُكُمْ لِبَعْضٍۢ نَّفْعًۭا وَلَا ضَرًّۭا وَنَقُولُ لِلَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا۟ ذُوقُوا۟ عَذَابَ ٱلنَّارِ ٱلَّتِى كُنتُم بِهَا تُكَذِّبُونَ
So Today neither of you can benefit or protect each other. And We will say to the wrongdoers, “Taste the torment of the Fire, which you used to deny.”

Again, you see similar verses but first it's the word "ٱلَّذِى" (masculine) and then it's "ٱلَّتِى" (feminine).

I'm sure you'll have understood this technique now! Here are further examples for you look up:

  • Look at verse 49 of Āle 'Imrān (Fīhi which is masculine) and verse 110 of al-Mā'idah (fīhā which is feminine).
  • Look at verse 54 of al-Muddathir (innahū which is masculine) and verse 11 of 'Abas (innahā which is feminine).
  • Look at verse 44 of Āle 'Imrān (dhālika and nūhīhi that are masculine) and verse 49 of Hūd (tilka and nūhīhā that are feminine).
  • There's one where the feminine is first and then masculine (al-Anbiyā' verse 91 vs at-Tahrīm verse 12).

Mental visualisation of the similar verses

Sometimes it is beneficial to mentally visualise the words of similar verses. This means that you create associative links through the meaning of the similarities. For example:

Surah al-Wāqi'ah

If you take a look at the following verses:

أَفَرَءَيْتُم مَّا تُمْنُونَ 56:58
Have you considered what you ejaculate?
56:63 أَفَرَءَيْتُم مَّا تَحْرُثُونَ
Have you considered what you sow?
56:68 أَفَرَءَيْتُمُ ٱلْمَآءَ ٱلَّذِى تَشْرَبُونَ
Have you considered the water you drink?
56:71 أَفَرَءَيْتُمُ ٱلنَّارَ ٱلَّتِى تُورُونَ
Have you considered the fire you kindle?

This is how you'd create a mental link or visualisation of these similarities:

  • Human beings are created from a single sperm
  • Every human being then benefits and requires the next three things: food (what is sowed), water (that is drunk), and then fire to cook it all.

Or you can see it as:

  • A seed (ejaculate)
  • Then you put the seed into soil (sow)
  • Then you water it (drink)
  • Then let the sun do its job (fire you kindle).

Surah adh-Dhāriyāt

Take a look at the following verses 20 to 22:

51:20 وَفِى ٱلْأَرْضِ ءَايَـٰتٌۭ لِّلْمُوقِنِينَ
There are ˹countless˺ signs on earth for those with sure faith,
51:21 وَفِىٓ أَنفُسِكُمْ ۚ أَفَلَا تُبْصِرُون
as there are within yourselves. Can you not see?
51:22 وَفِى ٱلسَّمَآءِ رِزْقُكُمْ وَمَا تُوعَدُونَ
In heaven is your sustenance and whatever you are promised.

Here we have three words: earth, yourselves (people), and sky (heaven). You can create a mental image like this:

  • The earth was created first
  • Then the human being
  • Then our destination is heaven

Or you may see it as:

  • The earth is below us
  • Then it is us (the people)
  • Then the sky is above us

Linking the vowels of the similar words with the vowels of the surah name

Another beneficial method and useful technique is to link the vowels of the similar words or verses to the vowels of the surah name. There are 5 examples of this.

Example 1: The word (رَغَدًا) in Surah al-Baqarah

This word appears in Surah al-Baqarah (verses 35 and 58) and in Surah an-Nahl (verse 112). Since they appear in al-Baqarah, you see that in the name 'al-Baqarah' there are three vowels of 'a' (fatha) and also in the word 'raghadan' there are three vowels of 'a' (fatha).

Example 2: The word (يُنزَفُونَ) and (يُنزِفُونَ)

These words appears in Surah as-Sāffāt (verse 47) and in al-Wāqi'ah (verse 19). You see the difference in the vowels of the letter 'za'? It matches the vowels of the surah names.

Example 3: The word (مَوْتَتَنَا) and (مَوْتَتُنَا)

These words appear in Surah as-Sāffāt (verse 59) and ad-Dukhān (verse 35). You see the difference between the vowels once again. There's a fatha for surah as-Sāffāt and a dhammah for ad-Dukhān.

Example 4: The word (فَأَنَّ لَهُۥ نَارَ جَهَنَّمَ) and (فَإِنَّ لَهُۥ نَارَ جَهَنَّمَ)

Again the difference between these in Surah at-Tawbah (verse 63) and al-Jinn (verse 23) is the vowel change in the word fa-anna or fa-inna. They, again, match the surah names.

Example 5: The word (وَيُتِمُّ نِعْمَتَهُ) and (وَيُتِمَّ نِعْمَتَهُ)

Again the difference between these in Surah Yusuf (verse 6) and al-Fath (verse 2) is the vowel change in the words. They, again, match the surah names.

May Allāh increase us in our memory, understanding and piety.

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