THE REFERENCE to the mystic Night Journey in the first verse of this surah (see Appendix IV) shows that it cannot have been revealed earlier than in the last year before the hijrah; Suyuti places it chronologically between surah 28 and the group of surahs 10-12. The assumption of some authorities that certain of its verses belong to a much later time - namely, the Medina period -is purely conjectural and may, therefore, be disregarded. Because of the mention of the children of Israel in verses 2-8 and 101-104, some of the contemporaries of the Prophet used to designate this surah by the title of Banu Isra'il ("The Children of Israel"); most of the classical commentators, however, prefer the title Al-Isra'. According to 'A'ishah, the Prophet used to recite this surah every night in his prayer (Tirmidhi, Nasa'i and Ibn Hanbal).
LIMITLESS in His glory is He who transported His servant by night from the Inviolable House of Worship [at Mecca] to the Remote House of Worship [,at Jerusalem] - the environs of which We had blessed1 - so that We might show him some of Our symbols: for, verily, He alone is all-hearing, all-seeing.2