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word دحاها (dahaha)

Reader comment on item: Friendless in the Middle East
in response to reader comment: As usual invented mistakes.

Submitted by meraj (India), Mar 24, 2013 at 17:55

As for your particular question, the word دحاها (dahaha) means expanded it and paved it. This was understood by Imam Fakhr ad-Deen ar-Razi, who died in the seventh century A.H. (more than 700 years ago) to mean refer to conform with the globular structure of the earth, because an enormous ball, as he indicated, will always look flat to people on its surface with no end. Imams Ibn al-Qayyem and Ibn Taymeah (from the seventh century as well) concurred with the understanding of the globular earth in their books, at-Tibyan fi Aqsam al-Quran and al-Jawaab as-Saheeh Li-man Baddala Deena al-Maseeh, respectively. This interpretation can be also supported by the following verse:

خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ بِالْحَقِّ يُكَوِّرُ اللَّيْلَ عَلَى النَّهَارِ وَيُكَوِّرُ النَّهَارَ عَلَى اللَّيْلِ…

Sahih International: He created the heavens and earth in truth. He wraps the night over the day and wraps the day over the night ….

Yusuf Ali: He created the heavens and the earth in true (proportions): He makes the Night overlap the Day, and the Day overlap the Night…

Dr. Ghali: He created the heaven and the earth with the Truth; He rolls the night over the daytime, and He rolls the daytime over the night…

[Surat Az-Zumar 39:5]

The rolling or wrapping or overlapping is the translation of the Arabic word يكور which is the verb from the root كور (kaaf – waaw – raa') from which the word كرة (ball) is derived.

To summarize, the word دحاها (dahaha) per se has been interpreted by the righteous predecessors to mean expanded and paved, and that is what we say, as well. Nonetheless, this was understood, along with other allusions in the Quran, by our imams to mean that the earth is globular, many centuries before this was an accepted concept of the modern times.

Allah knows best

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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