الآية رقم (1) - أَلْهَاكُمُ التَّكَاثُرُ

(1) - (Competition in [worldly] increase diverts you. (1))

Meaning, you are engaged in life to increase your money, children and other things which are weighed and measured.

التَّكَاثُرُ (competition in increase): The Arabic word’s tense indicates that the action is done by two sides, each of them is a subject and an object. Same as we say that Zayd and Amr fought each other, so the fighting is done by each of them, as such (competition in increase), we say, people are competing, to refer that they are competing with each other. Accordingly, Allah (swt) says: Competition in the worldly pleasures diverted you, each person competes another; saying my money is more than yours, my children are more than yours, my family is bigger than yours. However, Allah (swt) brings to us the general meaning, that is, He (swt) does not mention what the competition is about, to let it refer to everything.

This verse also means: Your worldly useless affairs kept you busy and away from what is beneficial. Diversion indicates that there a person is busy-minded with something unrequired instead of the required things, which wastes his efforts. In this regard, amusement is also a type of diversion because it makes a person busy with useless thing, as such, when Allah (swt) indicates diversion in the Holy Qur’an, He (swt) indicates it after amusement:

 ﴾إِنَّمَا الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا لَعِبٌ وَلَهْوٌ ﴿

 (This] worldly life is only amusement and diversion.) (Muhamad: 36)

Except in one place, diversion comes before amusement:

  ۚ﴾وَمَا هَٰذِهِ الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا إِلَّا لَهْوٌ وَلَعِبٌ﴿

 (And this worldly life is not but diversion and amusement.) (Al-Ankaboot: 64)

Consequently, any kind of diversion which occupies man with trivial matter is forbidden.