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UNCOVERING the original message of the Arabic Qur'an by using Lexicons compiled more than 1,000 years ago.

ISOLATING Fact from Fiction.

RECOVERING Hope and regaining the perspective where Humanity is one, God's Message is one, and our Future CAN become one we all look forward to!


Image: 14th C. Qur'an, Mamluk origin, Library of Congress; Rights obtained.

A BREAKTHROUGH project which helps understand the Qur'an AS REVEALED -not just 'as explained.'


Friday, March 12, 2010

Day 58; HQ5: 41-50, pages 115+116

Welcome Friends:  Ahlan wa sahlan!
It is indeed such a privilege to have one’s mind occupied by the Qur’an; reading, researching….and praying… asking God’s Guidance to the Truth, to the best that we can understand.  You will find much to think about today, dear Friends, and much motivation.
Thank you, dear Friends, for this partnership!
1.     Although Verse 41 is addressed to the Messenger, Muhammad, peace upon him, it is also intended for all who might grieve over those who rush into Denial, either from among their own ranks or from other ‘Faiths.’ 
Those who rush into Denial will be disgraced in this world, and suffer severely in the Hereafter.
Verse 42 describes them, in that they are oft-listeners to falsehood, oft-consumers of what is forbidden (again the repetitive form of the verb, similar to what we read in the last two Postings: sammaa’ سمّاع rather than sami’ سامع ; akkaal أكّال rather than aakel آكل). 
The Messenger Muhammad, peace upon him, was told that if they came to him for judgment, he should judge with Justice between them or let them be, for God loves the Just.  But then the next verse (43) asks how is it that they would come to him for judgment (in the first place), despite having the Torah, in which is God’s judgment (which they have received and supposedly believe)?  The verse asserts that such persons are indeed not Believers.
In his note 57 Muhammad Asad describes the mentality of this group, saying that “they are not really prepared to submit to the judgment of the Torah…nor the judgment of the Qur’an..”
Again, although this might be discussing People of (earlier) Compilation, it serves as a lesson for all time, especially for Believers in the Qur’an NOT to look elsewhere for God’s Judgment!

2.     Verses 44 begins by praising the Torah, revealed by God, containing both Guidance and Enlightenment and considered the standard by which prophets who were pure of direction (towards God) offered judgment unto the Jews.  Muhammad Asad tells us in note 58, that this implies that the Torah was intended only for them “and was never meant to have universal validity.”  The verse ends by stating that those who do not judge according to what God has revealed are indeed Deniers.

3.      Verse 45 tells us that of the judgments in the Torah (which they obviously were attempting to avoid by bringing their grievances to the Messenger to judge), were compiled/brought together UPON them  كتبنا عليهم: a life for a life, and an eye for an eye, and a nose for a nose, and an ear for an ear, and a tooth for a tooth, and the wounds (also) by retribution, AND that they could forego retribution as a charity to others, in which case God would consider it an atonement of his past sins.

4.     Muhammad Asad (our Torah expert) tells us something VERY interesting in this regard:  After telling us (note 61) to check out these severe retributions in Exodus 21:23 (link below), Asad adds (note 62) that the Forgiveness part of this verse (in italics above) is nowhere to be found in the five books currently considered the Torah!  He says that the Pentateuch (with its five books) “does not contain this call to forgiveness which is brought out with great clarity not only in the Qur’an but also in the teachings of Jesus..” and he continues, explaining that this may have been part of the original message to Bani Isra-eel, and was either corrupted with time, or deliberately abandoned by its followers, whom the Qur’an accuses of ‘distorting the meaning of the revealed words.’  Isn’t it strange that forgiveness and giving up legal retribution is NOT to be found in the Pentateuch?
Isn’t THAT food for thought!

Now let us think:
Isn’t it terrifying when we, as Believers in the Qur’an, compare this to what OUR own people have done? 
Many of our scholars are finally speaking up, showing how damaging similar acts have been to our faith and to our existence.  The famous scholar Yusuf Qardawi, for example, has protested quite plainly that we have zealots who have ‘abrogated’ or rendered ‘null and void’ what they count as between140-200 Qur’anic verses! *  What are these verses mostly about?  Fair treatment and forgiveness (!!!). 
No wonder the Qur’an goes on and on, about what happened to the People of (earlier) Compilation and how their Revelations were corrupted!  When we think about it, there really is no need to erase a few paragraphs to cause corruption in a compilation: 
It could remain intact WHILE being voided of the weight of some instruction, while other instruction is misinterpreted.  Although such a Compilation would not be corrupt in itself, it would be corrupted in our minds, in our understanding and application of it. 
But before we rush to throw all the blame on our figures of authority, perhaps we should shoulder part of the responsibility, if not for anything else, then just for being silent about this.  During our decades of silence, so-called ‘explanations and translations’ of the Qur’an have spread all across the globe, together with thousands of other publications that veil much of the Qur’ans illumination and void many of its most beautiful concepts, literally taking us all backward to a second ‘Jaahiliyyah’ جاهلية or ‘Period of Ignorance.’ 
BUT we can come out of this darkness and be positive forces to our societies and to the world once again because: 

We have our Arabic Qur’an. 
We believe in what it holds. 
We trust and rely on God Who sent it.
We have the beautiful example of the Messenger and the first Recipients, as God Himself has described them.
In the guidance of the Qur’an, with the aid of God who sent it TO US, we can BE the change we desire!  
5.     Verses 46-47 discuss Jesus Son of Mary, who followed in the footsteps of the earlier prophets, confirming the truth of what (remained) of the Torah, and receiving the Evangel in which was Guidance and Illumination, as well as Admonition for the Aware.  Therefore the People of the Evangel are told to judge by its standards, and those who do not, they indeed are the Noncompliant (iniquitous/those who rebel-Ali/Asad).  Perhaps now we can better understand the complications of – and the many reasons for - Jesus’ ‘corrective’ mission!

6.     Verse 48 discusses THIS Compilation, addressing its Deliverer, Muhammad, peace upon him, telling him that God revealed it to him in Truth and as a DETERMINANT of the truth of earlier Compilation (notice that the Compilation always is singular), and that he should judge between people with what has been revealed by God and not follow anyone’s desires.

An interesting statement in the center of the verse says that:
 “…to each of you have We rendered a System and an Approach, and if God had willed He would have indeed made of you a single ‘people/community,’ but (He willed it otherwise) to test (each of) you with what He has granted you, therefore compete towards all ‘virtues/good works,’ unto God will you all return then He will inform you of the matters in which you were (constantly) differing.”

It is not a different ‘religion’ that each of us has, but a different system شرعة and a different approach منهاج – and that’s how God willed it, to see who accomplishes best with what they are given!  Isn’t that a totally new way to look at it?  This fact should have been known to anyone who read the Arabic Qur’an!

7.     The last two verses tell the Messenger again, peace upon him, to judge as per what he had received (read full verses), and asks eloquently at the end: …
“…Do they then seek judgment by the standards of Ignorance (جاهلية Jaahiliyyah)?’ 
And Who could be of better Judgment than God, for- قوم يوقنون -People of Inner Certainty?”

Enough said!
Our next Reading is from HQ5: 51-64

Peace unto all!

* "ووصل الأمر إلى أنهم قالوا إن آية السيف نسخت مائة وأربعين آية في كتاب الله، بل بعضهم قال نسخت مائتي آية، وإن هذه الآيات موجودة في المصحف خطًا ولفظًا ومعدومة المعنى:
*(شرع) شيءٌ يُفتَح في امتدادٍ يكون فيه. من ذلك الشّريعة، وهي مورد الشَّارِبة الماء. واشتُقّ من ذلك الشِّرْعة في الدِّين، والشَّريعة. قال الله تعالى: {لِكُلٍّ جَعَلْنَا مِنْكُمْ شِرْعَةً وَمِنْهَاجَاً}  [المائدة 48]، وقال سبحانه: {ثُمَّ جَعَلْنَاكَ عَلَى شَرِيعَةٍ مِنَ الأَمْرِ}  [الجاثية 18]. ويُقال أشرعْتُ طريقاً، إِذا أنفذتَه وفتحتَه، وشرعت أيضاً. وشَرَعْت الإِبلَ، إِذا أمكنتَها من الشّريعة. هذا هو الأصل ثم حُمِل عليه كلُّ شيءٍ يُمدُّ في رفعةٍ وغير رفعة. من ذلك الشِّرَع، وهي الأوتار، واحدتها شِرْعة، والشراع جمع الجمع ومن ذلك شِرَاع السَّفينة، وهو ممدودٌ في علوٍّ.

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