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another two cents and arabic romanization

Reader comment on item: Still Asleep After Mumbai
in response to reader comment: And my two cents too

Submitted by Keith Williams (United States), Dec 24, 2008 at 16:09

Hi dhimmi,

Sure, I can give you one of the deviations of Islam that the criminals may use. For example, I don't think that the use of different divisions of territory in Islam like Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Harb is Quranic and you probably will not find them in the Qur'an or hadiths.

You also wrote:
>>
the sira (and there is no H at the end of the word sira as Pakistanis like to tell us) that
<<

I thought we cleared this up before? For unofficial forums such as this you can transliterate or transcribe the tah marbuta تاء مربوطة‎‎, by leaving it silent /t/ or with an /h/ if that helps the person in pronunciation and vocalizing the words? But here in sirah, the tah marbuta is sitting alone and is isolated from the rest of the word. Usually, when pronounced in isolation ة the sound ends in a soft /h/ sound so this word should be vocalized as sirah. But if it helps you my friend you can use sira because both words are the same thing and I've even seen it written as seerah also.

سيرة

There are many ways to translate the tah marboutah into english. Here are a few of them.

Arabic Romanization Transliteration Comparison Chart

Letter

Unicode

Name

SATTS

UNGEGN

ALA-LC

DIN

ISO

ISO/R

QALAM

SAS

SM

Buckwalter

IPA

BATR

ArabTex

0629

tāʼ marbūṭa

@

h, t

h, t

h, t

h, t

h, t

t; —

ŧ

p

/a/, /at/

t'

T

Most of these are used so that you can have a standard way every time of writing so that you can also use a computer system that will recognize what you are writing so that it can automatically translate the words from english to arabic and back again. What we are doing when we transcribe in our comments on this website is transcription so that non-arabic speakers can better vocalize what we are writing. So, sira or sirah are both fine in our conversations because depending on where you are from in the U.S. you will write the way that it sounds in your head. This is not standardized and there is no universal system for vocalizing arabic because there are just too many phonetical combinations in the way people talk throughout the world that we would have maybe 100 ways to write every arabic word. This helps people pronounce the arabic words and that is all. That is why we don't need to be that technical here but if you are writing in another context then you have to use the correct system for that context so that system can understand what you are saying. There should be one universal way but there is not at this time. I know what you are saying in all of your transliterations/transcriptions and I know you understand mine and when we don't then that is where the conflict and misunderstandings start and that is why there should be a universal way of Arabic Romanization. For example, many people write Muhammad in so many different ways but you know what they mean in every one of them and mostly don't get bent out of shape on that but there should be just one universal system I agree. Let's not be so dogmatic about our arabic transliterations/transcriptions on this website shall we until that universal system materializes???

peace

Submitting....

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