In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
And He sent down for you eight head of cattle in pairs: He makes you in the wombs of your mothers, in stages, one after the other.(39:6)
This verse comprises the same point we explained in the discussion of the verse, “And We sent down iron;”(57:25) it both corroborates it and is corroborated by it.
By saying in Sura al-Zumar, “And He sent down for you eight head of cattle in pairs,” and not saying: And He created for you eight head of cattle in pairs, the Qur’an of Miraculous Exposition is stating: “Eight sorts of blessed animals have been sent down to you from the treasury of mercy, as though they were bounties of Paradise.” Yes, those blessed animals are a gift for mankind with all their parts, for their wool or hair is made into the mobile homes and clothes of nomads, good food is made from their flesh, delicious sustenance is had from their milk, shoes and so on are made from their hides, cultivated land is nourished by their manure and men make fuel from it. It is as though those blessed animals are pure bounty and embodied mercy.
It is because of this that like rain is called “mercy” (rahma), these blessed beasts are called “bounty” (an‘am). As though just as embodied mercy becomes rain, so too embodied bounty takes on the form of goats, sheep, cattle, water-buffalo, and camels. For sure their physical bodies are created on the earth, but since the attribute of being bounties and the meaning of mercy have totally predominated over their physical beings, in accordance with the phrase “And He sent down,” the All-Compassionate Creator sent down these blessed animals directly from the exalted degree of His mercy and His elevated, immaterial Paradise, as gifts from the treasury of mercy.
Sometimes art of high worth is present in material worth virtually nothing. It is given value in respect of the art, not of the material’s value, like the tiny material being of a fly and the sublime dominical art within it. Sometimes valuable material worth five lira contains art worth nothing; then the material predominates.
In just the same way, sometimes in some physical material the meaning of bounty and mercy is found to such a degree that it is a hundred times more important than the material. The physical matter is quite simply hidden and its aspect of bounty predominates. Thus, just as the vast benefits of iron and the many products it yields conceal its material aspect, so too bounty being present in every member of the blessed animals mentioned