To Mo on Context and laughter
Submitted by Plato (United Arab Emirates), Jan 28, 2007 at 07:14
Allah (s) has sent messengers and prophets to all nations and tribes throughout the ages; it is logical and rational to send people form within themselves, who understands the people, understands their ways and customs, people would rather accepts their own then an outsider telling them what to do or not. With this in mind, it is natural that the language would be the same for the Warner and the warned, for obvious reasons
I accept Allah was behaving logically and reasonably when he sent messengers in the local languages. Why did Allah become illogical and irrational after sending Mohammed? For obvious reasons, as you nicely put it, his making Mohammed the seal of prophets should be considered an illogical and irrational act. Please give me the logical and rational reason why Allah discriminated against the vast majority of huamanity by putting an end to his messaging humankind through prophets in all the languages of his creatures.
Before the advent Muhammad (p) all messengers and prophets that came where sent locally, to specific people and tribes only, like the Israelites were sent continuous messengers and prophets
Same query as before. Why did a logical and rational Allah before Mohammed become illogical and irrational after Mohammed?
Now the verses that you presented are true within the context; so what is the context? The Quran is a book for the whole of mankind, but starting point, the people whom it was addressed were to those within the immediate vicinity of the Prophet (p). Because those geographically close to the Prophet (p) were Arabs in general, the Quran primarily addresses them.
Exactly my point. The context is the key here as you say. But then you take a giant leap of illogic (faith?) and say the Koran is for all mankind. You also admit the Koran is primarily addressing those geographically close to the prophet. And the Koran says this often and mentions the reason why it is in Arabic (the Arabs will not pay heed otherwise). Why does the wise and all-knowing Allah then decide that the Arabic version of his message will or rather should be believed by all language groups. That is the crux of the probleml, Mo. Since you are for logic and rationality please use them to think through this question, and not by just a leap of faith.
The Quran address those Arabs involved primarily, to then reach to everyone else
Those underlined words are the giant leap of faith I am referring to. Why should the non-Arabs believe a message which Allah himself says is for the Arabs in so many verses except one. Especially as the logical and rational Allah says that people will only believe messages in their own language (41:44).
Why do you plead context only when convenient. Here are three translations of 7:158. Only Pikthal translates it as O mankind! I suspect the other two are more correct. It looks as though the locals were being addressed in the other two translations especially Shakir's 'O people' clearly seems to indicate the Prophet is addressing the people in front of him. Can Dhimmi No More come in here and help.
Again as I pointed out in my last reply if you insist this one overrides the others then you end up with the problem of abrogation.
Now having said this, it does not negate the fact that the Quran was not addressing the whole of mankind.You emphatically say that the Quran is for the Arabs only, and you use verses taking them out of context to prove you argument. You use verses addressing a certain people and apply it to everyone else. Now lets then look at verses within its truest contexts and apply it to non-Arabs like myself, (I think it's relevant to state here a hadiths that springs into mind which states the Prophet saying "an Arab is someone who speaks Arabic" anyhoo...), there are dozens of verses to choose from, and all of them start with "Yaa ay' yu hannaas" meaning "Oh mankind" also dozens more which begin with "Yaa ay' yu hallazeena Aamanu" meaning "Oh you who believe"
It is not I who am emphatically stating the Koran is for Arabs, it is the Koran itself doing that as I showed you in those verses. As to your translation of the Arabic word to 'mankind', I find that it is only Pikthal who uses that word, the others always use 'men'. I have no Arabic. Dhimmi no More could help here. O men and O people don't carry the same meaning as O mankind. As to 'Oh you who believe', using the context thing of which you are so fond, they could only have been the Arabs who believed as there were no other believers then.
It is not torture, but an experience, we Muslims believe that any practice that is done for the sake of Allah (s) we will be rewarded. So learning Arabic for the sake of getting closer to the book of Allah (s) is fine by us
Good for you if it is not torture. Why has Allah made it hard for non-Arabs to get closer to the book of Allah. If this pro-Arab bias of Allah does not bother you, who am I to complain.
Arabic is not actually an alien language, there are hundreds of common English words that has its roots and derivation from Arabic. One such example is "Alcohol."
Sanskrit must be even less alien to you. There must be literally thousands of Sanskrit words (and also its grammar would be similar) in Bengali. Why don't you learn it. Some of the world's oldest and most profound thoughts would open up to you! I can assure they would provide a nice counterpoint to the Middle Eastern thoughts you are marketing.
A saying I remembered: He who laughs last laughs best.. Say: O people! surely I am the Messenger of Allah to you all, ..." Say (O Muhammad): O mankind! Lo! I am the messenger of Allah to you all - ..." Say: "O men! I am sent unto you all, as the Messenger of Allah, ..."
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".
Reader comments (2108) on this item
Comment on this item
Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum. Daniel J. Pipes