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Surat al-Rahman: The Identity of the Two Seas! Or may be Sea and River?

Reader comment on item: Study the Koran?
in response to reader comment: Recollecting Last Year's Speculations Regarding Classical Versus Quranic Transliterations and Modern Interpretations

Submitted by dhimmi no more (United States), Jul 15, 2022 at 08:57

You wrote:

>Question: are the two seas the Red sea on the west and the Persian 'sea' (Gulf) on the east (DMN?)?

The short answer is: al-Mufasereen do not know. al-Tabari says:

واختلف أهل العلم في البحرين اللذين ذكرهما الله

Or The people of knowledge (al-Mufasereen) disagreed about (the identity) of the two seas mentioned by Allah

So in short he does not know, but this did not stop him from saying:

فالبحران: بحر فارس، وبحر الروم.

Or the Two Seas are: The Sea of Faris (Iran) and the sea of the Greeks

Did he mean that the Sea of Faris is: الخليج الفارسي (The Persian Gulf) aka الخليج العربي (The Arabian Gulf) and the Sea of the Greeks is: Έρυθά Θάλσσσα or Erytha Thalassa aka The Red Sea and in this case the Barzkh (Isthmus) is شبه الجزيرة العربية or The Arabian Peninsula ? May be. He was only guessing.

But al-Tabari's has doubts about this tradition and that it cannot be two seas because this tradition must be about salty water from a sea "mixing" or "separated" from sweet water from a river. And this is why he mentions that it very well could be the waters of the Nile and Dajla mixing with salt water. And in this case the Sea of the Greeks becomes The Mediterranean ( μεσογειακός) sea.

>Was this not a question of domain in asserting Quranic control?

I believe that you might be giving al-Mufasereen and the authors of the tradition too much credit.


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