Beware of the Spider's Home

Allaah azza wa jal says:

"The example of those who take allies other than Allah is like that of the spider who takes a home. And indeed, the weakest of homes is the home of the spider, if they only knew."

[Al-'Ankabut: 41]

Points of benefit taken from the verse:

  • Allaah compares the weakest of homes (home of a spider) to the reality of shirk. Shirk itself is incredibly weak which is the Complete opposite to tawheed which Allaah describes in surah Baqarah as '...the most trustworthy handhold with no break in it...'[2:256]

  • Homes are usually stronger than the habitant, but not for the case of the spider. Since the spider compared to other living creatures, is generally a weak creature and its home - the web is even weaker.

  • The web refers to a system or network of help and the Spider mentioned in the ayah refers to the one who seeks help and relies upon other than Allaah. Mushriks as we know do this but also Muslims can fall into this by going to a magician etc.

  • Characteristics of the spider's home:
  • Weak, frail, flimsy
  • Easily breakable
  • Trap for insects - gets caught and stuck in the web
  • Webs are usually made in places that are abandoned
  • The spider’s home exposes the spider
  • The spider actually has to protect its home

  • The spider's home is a home of betrayal and Treachery - A female spider tempts and attracts the male spider to its home and after mating; gaining its interests it kills him or even consumes him. Similarly the shaytan temps man but then it deceives and betrays him. So the system and network of shirk will always fail you.

Surah al-Hashr: 16

'like the example of Satan when he says to man, "Disbelieve." But when he disbelieves, satan says, "Indeed, I am free of you. Indeed, I fear Allah, Lord of the worlds."

Surah Yasin: 74-75

'But they have taken besides Allah [false] deities that perhaps they would be helped. They are not able to help them, and they [themselves] are for them soldiers in attendance.'

Surah Maryam: 81-82

'And they have taken besides Allah [false] deities that they would be for them [a source of] honour. No! Those "gods" will deny their worship of them and will be against them opponents [on the Day of Judgement].'

Surah Hud: 101

'And We did not wrong them, but they wronged themselves. And they were not availed at all by their gods which they invoked other than Allah when there came the command of your Lord. And they did not increase them in other than ruin.'

The above ayahs are from 4 different Surahs in the Qur'an which Ibn al-Qayyim said "These are 4 places of the Qur'an which further clarify the parable of the spider's home..."

So what can we learn and take from this parable of the spider's home mentioned by Allaah?

We learn that seeking help from other than Allaah or whatever leads you to it - is haram/forbidden. It is not a place for us to approach or to dwell in. It is a place where a person becomes robbed of their strength, imaan and independence like when the insect becomes stuck and trapped in the web. It is a vicious trap. And all that they feared and tried to save their own selves from comes and surrounds them and eventually engulfs them and destroys them.

May Allaah protect us all, aameen.