54 Preface وَحيلَ بَينَهُم وَبَينَ ما يَشتَهونَ كَما فُعِلَ بِأَشياعِهِم مِن قَبلُ ۚ إِنَّهُم كانوا في شَكٍّ مُريبٍYusuf AliAnd between them and their desires, is placed a barrier,1 as was done in the past with their partisans:2 for they were indeed in suspicious (disquieting) doubt.3What they desire is to suppress Truth and to indulge in the satisfaction of their own evil, selfish motives. They will be baulked in both, and that itself will be their anguish and punishment. That had always been the law in the eternal struggle between Right and Wrong. Cf. Shakespeare, (Trolius and Cressida. i. 3. 116). “Right and wrong. Between whose endless jar justice resides.” All partisans of such cliques have always suffered the same fate.Note that verses 51-54 are a powerful description of the conflict between right and wrong, and may be understood in many meanings. (1) The description applies to the position in the final Hereafter, as compared with the position in this life. (2) It applies to the position of triumphant Islam in Medīna and later, as compared with the position of persecuted Islam in its early days in Mecca. (3) It applies to the reversal of the position of right and wrong at various phases of the world’s history, or of (4) individual history.Cf. 14:9, and see n. 1884.