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("Peace be with you" if ignorant people addresses them), The Holy Qur'an

Reader comment on item: When Political Correctness Chokes Off Communications
in response to reader comment: muslims and their confusions

Submitted by Salah Ali (Norway), May 15, 2009 at 10:50

To G. Vishvas:

I was talking of the Language of the Qur'an, when I said it contained metaphors and allusions. Not of the Qur'an as a system of life and a unique world-view. Arabic Language upon the testimony of Hamilton Gibb, Massignon and Hitti to quote few is a highly metaphoric and allusive language and it is, therefore, ranked as a high context language i.e. context is significant for understanding its various connotations and nuances. To say that it has no instructions or knowledge for our life is a self-contradictory statement since it is so comprehensive that it provides all knowledge that pertains to our life. Occasionally it tends to communicate certain cognitive aspects through the vehicle of metaphor which strongly appeals to the Arab mind which had its roots in pre-Islamic Arabia and oral transmission of knowledge. What you say of Shari'ah and Islamic jurisprudence of Islamic management of the state and public and personal life?

The conflicting trends of Islam are natural outcome of all religions. It was the same with Christianity whose divisions sent the whole world in flames for centuries. The founding of the Arab Empire during the Ummayads' period added a class dimension to Islamdom and various factions came into existence. Ummayads' hegemony which was rather non-Islamic distanced the non-Arab Muslems and their politics of nepotism deepened discontent. Accordingly many people started to investigate the Qur'anic tenets to defend their views and/or refute their opponents' views.

I agree with you on the point that Muslem doctrines contradict and murderously conflict among themselves. But here we should also resort to history to find out about the causes of conflict in Islam whether it was devolved from the original teachings of the prophet and the tenets of the Holy Qur'an or, as is definitely the case, from the contamination brought in Islam by non-Muslem intruders. Shiism for instance is propagated by discontented Persians and it was Ismail Shah Safawi who turned Persia into the Twelfer form of Shiism, laying the roots of modern discord in Islam. Even the first fitna, sidition in Islam was affected by Persian and Jews. In more recent times, Western superpowers supported both Wahabism and Selafi trends just to entropies and confuse our societies. It was the West that introduced nationalism, Communism and Fascism into the Arab-Muslem world. If we brand Islam as a totalitarian religion what then we should call, Christianity, Capitalism, Imperialism and the modern merchandizing of every aspect of human life?

I am not talking of rhythm in a poetic or Musical sense but in a semantic and cognitive sense. The Qur'an rhythm tells of a single voice in a Bakhtinian sense. It is not primitive because primitive people lack polite code of manners and lack what in Islam we term Shari'ah. The Genius of Arabic is fully and beautifully manifested in the Holy Qur'an. So many Western scholars have devoted a whole life time studying it and some of whom embraced Islam after they find the true path to cleanliness, justice and dignity. As for your statement that Allah Be Exaulted is the Jewish alla or the Quraysh Allat, I need not linger on such triviality since you borrow from polemics literature on this point.

It is in the ontology and epistemology of the Holy Qur'an and all religions that we should talk. I challenge you if you provide me a single explanation of how a simple orange came to fit human fingers? How horses came to answer mankind's evolution in one phase of history? You shouldn't feel satisfied with simplistic explanation and stand up to answering these ontological questions bravely and intellectually!

As for tolerance of Islam, I should refer you to history again. Even thogh I will provide one example that is from the Crusades when Al-Malik Al-Kamel met Francis Assisi or when Sultan Salahaldin released Christian POWs… Examples are numerous. Islam has tabooed drugs implicitly. What takes the reason prisoner is tabooed. But why coffee or tobacco- if you do not intend to digress on anachronism? These are products of Capitalism and if you buy a packet of cigarettes you read a warning: it kills you, still you sell it! You have turned men into women and women into sex slaves: There are millions of porno sites which just betray your calls for democracy. Simply you are immoral and want others to be like you, reduced to the flesh desire, to animals. Islam teaches us to be upright, kind and faithful to our families. You cannot judge Islam from the perspective of some perverse Orientalists or in taking some corrupt Muslems like Bush or the neocons as an example of Islam. I bring in this example because any corrupt Muslem is as dirty and vicious as Bush and other hooligans. I live in Norway and have here my family and friends who never put the veil. In my homeland Iraq, none of the girl I taught or met put the veil. The true veil is chastity of the heart and cleanliness of both the body and the heart. Imagine you go to the loo and use tissue paper. Do you call this practice cleanliness? Islam has taught us to be clean in body, heart and soul and if there is dirt' it comes from you and through you.

The courageous Muslims who spread Islam all over the Ancient world in less than 32 years were not cowards. It was by the name of God and for the name of God that we fight and struggle for a better life. God is absolute goodness, mercy and might. You crooked tongue and mind cannot fathom the power it injects into our hearts reading the names of God. There are 99 Names of God and every time we mention them we are supreme and elegant. I have seen most of the world and I am deeply convinced that only Arabs can understand the Holy Qur'an in every detail and for a non-Arab Moslems, it was God who tendered their hearts to Islam. In other words, non-Arabs (especially Pagan half-wits like you) must and should not be allowed to talk of what they cannot understand. No translation can bring the purport and the soul of this great word of God. A dialogue then is impossible between a believer and an atheist. So your Platonic frog will always see the world lopsided because it is overturned in its well of ignorance and arrogance.

Finally, none of the Moslems compares the Holy Qur'an to poetry or prose. It is above and beyond both. I am myself a poet and novelist; I have also translated English and norsk poetry. I lived in an English family and read almost all the Romantics. None approaches the Qur'an. You can tell from my English that I know this language and had read Western philosophy, science and psychology. Yet, I have never seen a language that matches that of the Qur'an. The rhetorical devices used in it traverse the lifespan of all literary production.

As for Sufism, read the literature written in the West on Islamic Sufism and later on come to talk. It is a waste of time indeed to talk on a topic the other part ignores roots and branches: read, Massignon, Nicholson, Arberry, Corbin, etc and then come and talk on something you can neither understand nor will understand all your life.

Salah Ali

Norway

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