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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!


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


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Day 107; Qur’an 10: 21-33, page 211 + 212

Welcome Friends:  Ahlan wa sahlan!
Yusuf Ali’s Translation of this Chapter.
Muhammad Asad’s Translation of this Chapter.
Their commentaries can only be read in verse by verse view.

PAGE 211 Arabic Qur’an.
1.  Verse 21 begins by a general statement, in that people, once distress or danger has passed, tend to distort and misconstrue (‘makrمكر-) the truths they had witnessed, truths which were at the time ‘God’s signs’ to them.
The verse goes on to say that God is swifter in construing (than they could ever be in misconstruing); His (angel) messengers are compiling against them a record of everything they misconstrued.
Another word for ‘makr’ is to devise.  But “How does God construe or devise?” is not a question for us to answer.  We just try to understand what the Qur’an tells us about God in general, leaving the specifics to Him.  But as Lexicons tell us, ‘makr [i]’ is of two kinds, the positive and the negative, and is related to what people misconstrue/devise of Falsehood, versus what God construes/devises of Truths.

2.  Verse 22 offers, what Asad called, a ‘parabolic illustration’

Note that our two scholars translated the word ‘deen دين-’ as ‘duty/faith’ (Ali/Asad).  
As Regular Readers already know, as explained by old Lexicons, ‘Deen’ simply means ‘Accountability.’ 
Unfortunately however, translators have missed this point.  If we looked at the 10 explanations on this page, we’ll note that ten persons offer 5 different translations of the word ‘deen!’

·        4 times translated as ‘faith.’
·        2 times translated as ‘religion.’
·        2 times translated as ‘obedience.’
·        1 time translated as ‘submission.’
·        1 time translated as ‘duty.’

We also notice that 4 of them related ‘shukrشكر-" to ‘gratitude’ while the other 6 related it to ‘thankfulness.’  Regular Readers know from our Posting of January 13th  that ‘shukr’ does not denote simple gratitude or thanks, but rather ‘accepting what is little and making the most of it until it achieves abundance,’ in other words, productivity.  The Arabic definition is reposted in footnote[ii] and reflected in this explanation:

This verse describes the desperation when people realize that none but God can help them.  In utter helplessness, they call unto Him feeling, at that moment, accountable completely and purely to Him.  They promise God that, if He saved them, they would make the most of whatever He gives them, no matter how little, and would work hard to spread its benefit to others. 

Verse 23 informs us that, as soon as God had saved them, they did the exact opposite of what they had promised: They transgressed on this earth in violation of the rights of others (just as verse 21 had stated)!  The verse ends with a dire warning after informing them that, by violating the rights of others, they violate their own Selves.

3.  Verse 24 offers a parable, drawing comparison between this immediate life, and a fertile orchard or field.  At the peak of fruitfulness, just before harvest, when we imagine holding its yield in our hands, we suddenly realize that we have nothing.  In that is a sign for those who ‘reflect/think’ (Ali/Asad).
Note for whom these signs are:
Verse 5 ‘…those who discern, or know.’
Verse 6 ‘…those who are Aware.’

4.  In Verse 25 God invites us to ‘Dar al Salaam’ the Abode of Peace, and guides us to the Straight Path. 
IMPORTANT:  The Abode of Peace is mentioned only twice in the Qur’an.  Both times related to the Straight Path, and to people who take heed of God’s Signs!
See HQ 6: 126- 127:

وَهَـٰذَا صِرَاطُ رَبِّكَ مُسْتَقِيمًا قَدْ فَصَّلْنَا الْآيَاتِ لِقَوْمٍ يَذَّكَّرُونَ ﴿١٢٦﴾
لَهُمْ دَارُ السَّلَامِ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ وَهُوَ وَلِيُّهُم بِمَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ ﴿١٢٧﴾

PAGE 212 Arabic Qur’an.

5. Verses 26-27 offer us ‘persuasion and dissuasion,’ as we listen to the description of those who will abide in eternal abodes which are, in fact, self-prepared.  The images in these verses are highly descriptive, as those who did good deeds got their reward and more, while those who earned bad deeds were only recompensed for what they had done. 
Verses 28-29-30 give us a glimpse into a scene which takes place when all shall be gathered before God. Those who ascribed partners to Him will be held apart, together with the ‘partners’ they had revered besides God.  But then their ‘partners’ will disown them, stating that God suffices as their Witness that they were unaware of being worshipped.  Each self shall be assessed by what it had sent forth of its deeds, and all shall return to God, their Rightful Protector… all this at a time when none can be false, as Falsehood itself, is no more.

Now is the time to testify that we worship God Alone, letting go of everything and everyone else, no matter how precious they are; they will all abandon us on Judgment Day.  

6. Verse 31 tells Prophet Muhammad, peace upon him to ask 5 questions, all beginning with ‘Who…?”  to which the answer is: “God!”  The verse ends by asking a final question: “Shouldn’t you then be Aware?”

We must bear in mind that Qureish DID believe in God, and would naturally respond as mentioned.  However, they also did worship other ‘deities’ they had set up as ‘partners’ with God, which is why all these verses steer them to rethink and re-evaluate their Accountability, persuading them at times, and also dissuading them from their false beliefs.

Verse 32 reintroduces them to God, their Rightful Lord, and asks what could be beyond Truth, or Rightfulness, except Error?  Then asks again: “So, whereto are you diverted?”

Notice the interactive questions, which will inevitably be answered, if only with silence!

7.  Verse 33 ends our Reading today:

“Thus was realized the word of your Lord against The Deserters, that they do not Believe.”

‘Fisq,’ or the Breach of Faith, as we mentioned on April 1st and March 18, denotes the point of no return, ‘Desertion.’  Ali uses ‘rebel,’ Asad says ‘bent on sinful doings,’ and Arberry says ‘ungodly.’  Technically, Ali is correct, but in today’s usage ‘rebel’ sound political, and does not fit. 

We can call a ‘faasiq’ a ‘deserter’ or someone ‘who breaches the faith.’  I have not yet found anything better. 
Enough said!
Our next Reading is from HQ 10: 34-53.

Peace unto all!

[i] - المكر: صرف الغير عما يقصده بحيلة، وذلك ضربان: مكر محمود، وذلك أن يتحرى بذلك فعل جميل، وعلى ذلك قال: }والله خير الماكرين{ [آل عمران/54]. ومذموم، وهو أن يتحرى به فعل قبيح، قال تعالى: }ولا يحيق المكر السيء إلا بأهله{ [فاطر/43]، }وإذ يمكر بك الذين كفروا{ [الأنفال/ 30]، }فانظر كيف كان عاقبة مكرهم{ [النمل/51]. وقال في الأمرين: }ومكروا مكرا ومكرنا مكرا{ [النمل/50] وقال بعضهم: من مكر الله إمهال العبد وتمكينه من أعراض الدنيا، ولذلك قال أمير المؤمنين رضي الله عنه: من وسع عليه دنياه ولم يعلم أنه مكر به فهو مخدوع عن عقله (انظر: البصائر 4/516؛ وتفسير الراغب ورقة 139).

[ii]شكر: الثَّناء على الإنسان بمعروف يُولِيكَهُ. ويقال إنَّ حقيقة الشُّكر الرِّضا باليسير. يقولون : فرسٌ شَكور، إذا كفاه لسِمَنِه العلفُ القليل. والأصل الثاني: الامتلاء والغُزْر في الشيء. يقال حَلُوبة شَكِرَةٌ إِذا أصابت حَظّاً من مرعىً فَغزُرت. ومن هذا الباب: شَكِرَت الشّجرةُ، إذا كَثُر فيئُها

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