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Thread: Quran might predate Muhammad?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cerebrum123 View Post
    So, the ones that "impress" you are the ones who don't stand up against false beliefs and teachings?
    Yes--because to stand up for your faith without attacking the "other" is more difficult to do....
    I find it difficult---so ofcourse I admire those who have such ability....

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    Quote Originally Posted by siam View Post
    Yes--because to stand up for your faith without attacking the "other" is more difficult to do....
    I find it difficult---so ofcourse I admire those who have such ability....
    That's just really dumb. One should always stand up to false ideas and teachings. Being purely defensive against falsehood will do nothing to prevent it from spreading.
    Safka, you are NOT "unknown", you were loved by many, and you will not be forgotten. I will always remember you Puginator.


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    Quote Originally Posted by T-Shirt Ninja View Post
    Take a look at this!


    This has major implications if it predates Muhammad or if it's contemporary with his life. If it predates, then it contradicts his story that the verses originated with his meeting the angel Gabriel and getting them from him. That would indicate that the Quran is an old Christian heresy that Muhammad adopted and used for his political and theological gain. If it's contemporary with him, then it contradicts the claim that the verses were memorized and written down after his life. I think the article sums it well by saying

    Historian Tom Holland, told the Times: 'It destabilises, to put it mildly, the idea that we can know anything with certainty about how the Koran emerged - and that in turn has implications for the history of Muhammad and the Companions.'
    Answering-Islam has something on this:

    http://www.answering-islam.org/filea...gham_quran.pdf

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  7. #125
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    Quote Originally Posted by siam View Post
    Would a perfectly preserved Qur'an mean it came from God?

    I don't think so.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raw-SB7AjMo

  8. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by Christian3 View Post
    Would a perfectly preserved Qur'an mean it came from God?

    I don't think so.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raw-SB7AjMo
    As I mentioned elsewhere, Western Quranic studies is still a young field. Muslims have analyzed the Quran for far longer and there is more information about it in the long Muslim tradition than what Western studies of the Quran has uncovered so far. Hopefully they will catch up and interesting dialogues can begin....maybe....

    It is true, that preservation alone does not indicate it "came from God". The Quran itself indicates the criteria of testing---which is pretty straightforward and commonsense (and scientific)---if the Quran is written by a human being---then one human being can reproduce a Surah like it, or a group of human beings can reproduce 10 Surah like it. In science, once a hypothesis is established, it should be tested and the test results should be reproducible. Therefore---if the hypothesis is that the Quran is a human endeavor---then reproduce it.

    To this end---the Quran has been thoroughly analyzed for its literary qualities (in the Muslim tradition).

    The Quran is a complex and interesting book---if Christians can get over their obsession with debunking the Quran/Islam, I am sure they can find much that is fascinating....and fortunately, there are serious Western scholars who are discovering this aspect. (See articles by Angelika Neuwirth and other such scholars)

    for example:-
    https://en.qantara.de/content/interv...-is-an-age-old
    Neuwirth: If one reads and interprets the Koran as a kind of information medium – as many contemporary Koranic researchers do – one does not do justice to it. The Koran is heavily poetic and contains a whole range of messages that it imparts at a semantic level – not at all explicitly, not at all unambiguously; it gets these messages across through poetic structures; if it didn't, it wouldn't be as vivid as it is. What makes the Koran unique is its complexity, its multiple layers, the fact that it speaks at different levels. On the one hand, of course, that is the huge aesthetic attraction. However, it is also, if you like, hugely attractive in rhetorical terms or in terms of its power of conviction.
    While it might be possible to sum up the mere information in the Koran in a short newspaper article, the effect would not have been the same. It really is about enchantment through language. Language itself is also praised in the Koran as the highest gift that humankind received from God. Naturally, this is related to knowledge. Language is the medium of knowledge. This is why one should never on top of everything else accuse the Islamic culture of being averse to knowledge. The entire Koran is basically a paean to knowledge, the knowledge that is articulated through speech.

    The linked video:-
    I did not see all of it yet---but hearing a Christian perspective was interesting. (I hope to see all of it and perhaps comment on it later)

    Angelika Neuwirth, Director of the Corpus Coraniucum project, says that the Quran is in dialogue with the concerns and themes of the period and as a "dialogue partner" argues for its own pov with regards to the prevalent themes of the time....
    ...thus, such scholars claim that by studying the Quran, one can get an idea of the millieu of that era...and the important debates and contentions of that time period.

    The story of the 2 sons of Adam (the names are intentionally omitted in the Quran) is somewhat misrepresented in the video---the particular verse (5: 32) refers to "soul" not blood, and this is also the case for the Hebrew passage it is referencing in the Talmud. (actually, Talmud Barelvi and Talmud Yerushalmi both have similar passages and the Quran advocates for the Yerushalmi passage as it is more universal ....?...but I have to double check this info again...as I had looked into this a long time ago....)

    The claim that the Quran "gets it wrong" is an old Christian claim (the Jews tend not to make it). However, there are Christian scholars who are willing to take a more serious look at the Quran. (Daniel Madigan is an example...he says that just as Christian texts are "in dialogue" with Jewish texts...the Quran is also "in dialogue" with Jewish and Christian texts and traditions)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMHxAMMFVV0

  9. #127
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    ...with regards to the video link by Christian 3

    Would it bother a Christian that Jews do not consider the New Testament "the word of God" or "from God"? If not, why expect Muslims to be bothered by what Christians claim of the Quran?

    As to the content of the video---there were references to 3 stories, all of which were misrepresented. The argument put forward is that because Christians consider certain texts as "from God", then stories outside of those texts are therefore---not "from God". (With that logic, one might conclude that the story of Noah "is not from God" because an Akkadian poem of Gilgamesh has the same story!) Whatever criteria Christians want to use for themselves is fine---but that does not mean that Muslims have to agree to, or follow, the Christian criteria of what is or is not "from God". Muslims have their own criteria of judgement.

    As for the Quranic stories--whether biblical or non-biblical, ---they serve as platforms for Guidance. In the pre-Modern era of oral traditions, wisdom/guidance/life-lessons...were taught through narratives and the Quranic stories carry wisdom teachings and ethico-moral lessons.
    for example, the (Quranic) story of the Queen of Sheba is about gratefulness/ungratefulness in relation to humility/pride. Truth/knowledge can be discerned only if one approaches learning with humility and gratefulness.

    http://www.altafsir.com/ViewTranslat...nslationBook=7

    27: 40
    Answered he who was illumined by revelation: "[Nay,] as for me – I shall bring it to thee ere the twinkling of thy eye ceases!"
    And when he saw it truly before him, he exclaimed: "This is [an outcome] of my Sustainer’s bounty, to test me as to whether I am grateful or ungrateful! However, he who is grateful [to God] is but grateful for his own good; and he who is ungrateful [should know that], verily, my Sustainer is self-sufficient, most generous in giving!"

    [27:41]
    [And] he continued: "Alter her throne* so that she may not know it as hers: let us see whether she allows herself to be guided [to the truth] or remains one of those who will not be guided."

    [27:42]
    And so, as soon as she arrived, she was asked: "Is thy throne like this?"
    She answered: "It is as though it were the same!"
    [And Solomon said to his nobles: "She has arrived at the truth without any help from us,] although it is we who have been given [divine] knowledge before her, and have [long ago] surrendered ourselves unto God!

    [27:43]
    [And she has recognized the truth] although that which she has been wont to worship instead of God had kept her away [from the right path]: for, behold, she is descended of people who deny the truth!"

    [27:44]
    [After a while] she was told: "Enter this court!" – but when she saw it, she thought that it was a fathomless expanse of water. and she bared her legs.
    Said he: ‘Behold, it is [but] a court smoothly paved with glass !"
    Cried she: "O my Sustainer! I have been sinning against myself [by worshipping aught but Thee]: but [now] I have surrendered myself, with Solomon, unto the Sustainer of all the worlds!"

    Tafsir by Muhammed Asad
    * v.40 : Lit., “he who had knowledge out of [or “through”] revelation (al-kitāb)”-i.e., Solomon himself (Rāzī).
    * I.e., faster than any magic could achieve: thus alluding to the symbolic nature of the forthcoming appearance of the “throne.” Here, as in the whole of the story of Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, symbolism and legendary “fact” are subtly intertwined, evolving into an allegory of the human soul’s awakening to a gradual realization of spiritual values.
    * Lit., “established before him.” Since the verbal form istaqarra and its participle mustaqirr often indicate no more than that something “has being” or “exists” (cf. Lane VII, 2500), the phrase ra’āhu mustaqirran ‘indahu may be understood as “he saw it being [i.e., actually] before him”: hence my rendering.
    * I.e., “whether I attribute my spiritual powers to God or, vaingloriously, to myself.”

    * v.41 : I.e., whether she remains satisfied with perceiving only the outward appearance of things and happenings, or endeavours to fathom their spiritual reality. Seeing that the people of Sheba were, until then, motivated by love of luxury and worldly power, Solomon intends to show the Queen her “throne,” or the image of her dominion, as it could be if it were inspired by faith in God and, hence, by a consciousness of moral responsibility.

    * v.42 : Sc., “and yet not quite the same”: thus, she expresses doubt – and doubt is the first step in all spiritual progress. She realizes that the “altered throne” is outwardly the same as that which she has left behind; but she perceives intuitively that it is imbued with a spiritual quality which the other did not possess, and which she cannot quite yet understand.
    * Thus Tabarī, Zamakhsharī, and Ibn Kathīr, on whose interpretation of this passage my rendering and the above interpolation are based.

    * v.43 : An allusion to her and her people’s worship of celestial bodies (cf. verses 24-25 and the corresponding notes 20 and 21).
    * Lit., “she was [sc., “born”] of people...,” etc. – thus stressing the role of the idolatrous tradition in which she had grown up, and which in the past had made it difficult for her to find the right path. Considering this cultural background, Solomon points out, her awakening at the very moment of her leaving her ancestral environment must be deemed most remarkable and praiseworthy.

    * v.44 : I.e., in order to wade into it, or perhaps to swim through it, thus braving the seemingly fathomless deep: possibly a symbolic indication of the fear which a human being may feel when his own search after truth forces him to abandon the warm, soothing security of his erstwhile social and mental environment, and to venture into the – as yet – unknown realm of the spirit.
    * I.e., not a dangerous, bottomless deep, as it appeared at first glance, but, rather, the firm, glass-clear light of truth: and with her perception of the ever-existing difference between appearance and reality, the Queen of Sheba comes to the end of her spiritual journey.



    (* Alter her throne---is a continuation of the narrative of the previous verses in which the throne of the Queen is carried to Solomons kingdom and disguised. ---one can read the full Quranic story in any English translation of the Quran.)


    (Though I do not use Muhammed Asad myself...the overall message of understanding the difference between illusions and Reality, Truth and falsehood by relying on God through humility and gratefulness comes through in the Quranic verses even without a Tafsir.)

    It was interesting to know the perspective of a Christian---but I would caution that people verify the content by double checking the actual Quranic stories.
    Last edited by siam; 09-14-2017 at 07:13 AM.

  10. #128
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    Quote Originally Posted by siam View Post
    ...with regards to the video link by Christian 3

    Would it bother a Christian that Jews do not consider the New Testament "the word of God" or "from God"? If not, why expect Muslims to be bothered by what Christians claim of the Quran?

    As to the content of the video---there were references to 3 stories, all of which were misrepresented. The argument put forward is that because Christians consider certain texts as "from God", then stories outside of those texts are therefore---not "from God". (With that logic, one might conclude that the story of Noah "is not from God" because an Akkadian poem of Gilgamesh has the same story!) Whatever criteria Christians want to use for themselves is fine---but that does not mean that Muslims have to agree to, or follow, the Christian criteria of what is or is not "from God". Muslims have their own criteria of judgement.

    As for the Quranic stories--whether biblical or non-biblical, ---they serve as platforms for Guidance. In the pre-Modern era of oral traditions, wisdom/guidance/life-lessons...were taught through narratives and the Quranic stories carry wisdom teachings and ethico-moral lessons.
    for example, the (Quranic) story of the Queen of Sheba is about gratefulness/ungratefulness in relation to humility/pride. Truth/knowledge can be discerned only if one approaches learning with humility and gratefulness.

    http://www.altafsir.com/ViewTranslat...nslationBook=7

    27: 40
    Answered he who was illumined by revelation: "[Nay,] as for me – I shall bring it to thee ere the twinkling of thy eye ceases!"
    And when he saw it truly before him, he exclaimed: "This is [an outcome] of my Sustainer’s bounty, to test me as to whether I am grateful or ungrateful! However, he who is grateful [to God] is but grateful for his own good; and he who is ungrateful [should know that], verily, my Sustainer is self-sufficient, most generous in giving!"

    [27:41]
    [And] he continued: "Alter her throne* so that she may not know it as hers: let us see whether she allows herself to be guided [to the truth] or remains one of those who will not be guided."

    [27:42]
    And so, as soon as she arrived, she was asked: "Is thy throne like this?"
    She answered: "It is as though it were the same!"
    [And Solomon said to his nobles: "She has arrived at the truth without any help from us,] although it is we who have been given [divine] knowledge before her, and have [long ago] surrendered ourselves unto God!

    [27:43]
    [And she has recognized the truth] although that which she has been wont to worship instead of God had kept her away [from the right path]: for, behold, she is descended of people who deny the truth!"

    [27:44]
    [After a while] she was told: "Enter this court!" – but when she saw it, she thought that it was a fathomless expanse of water. and she bared her legs.
    Said he: ‘Behold, it is [but] a court smoothly paved with glass !"
    Cried she: "O my Sustainer! I have been sinning against myself [by worshipping aught but Thee]: but [now] I have surrendered myself, with Solomon, unto the Sustainer of all the worlds!"

    Tafsir by Muhammed Asad
    * v.40 : Lit., “he who had knowledge out of [or “through”] revelation (al-kitāb)”-i.e., Solomon himself (Rāzī).
    * I.e., faster than any magic could achieve: thus alluding to the symbolic nature of the forthcoming appearance of the “throne.” Here, as in the whole of the story of Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, symbolism and legendary “fact” are subtly intertwined, evolving into an allegory of the human soul’s awakening to a gradual realization of spiritual values.
    * Lit., “established before him.” Since the verbal form istaqarra and its participle mustaqirr often indicate no more than that something “has being” or “exists” (cf. Lane VII, 2500), the phrase ra’āhu mustaqirran ‘indahu may be understood as “he saw it being [i.e., actually] before him”: hence my rendering.
    * I.e., “whether I attribute my spiritual powers to God or, vaingloriously, to myself.”

    * v.41 : I.e., whether she remains satisfied with perceiving only the outward appearance of things and happenings, or endeavours to fathom their spiritual reality. Seeing that the people of Sheba were, until then, motivated by love of luxury and worldly power, Solomon intends to show the Queen her “throne,” or the image of her dominion, as it could be if it were inspired by faith in God and, hence, by a consciousness of moral responsibility.

    * v.42 : Sc., “and yet not quite the same”: thus, she expresses doubt – and doubt is the first step in all spiritual progress. She realizes that the “altered throne” is outwardly the same as that which she has left behind; but she perceives intuitively that it is imbued with a spiritual quality which the other did not possess, and which she cannot quite yet understand.
    * Thus Tabarī, Zamakhsharī, and Ibn Kathīr, on whose interpretation of this passage my rendering and the above interpolation are based.

    * v.43 : An allusion to her and her people’s worship of celestial bodies (cf. verses 24-25 and the corresponding notes 20 and 21).
    * Lit., “she was [sc., “born”] of people...,” etc. – thus stressing the role of the idolatrous tradition in which she had grown up, and which in the past had made it difficult for her to find the right path. Considering this cultural background, Solomon points out, her awakening at the very moment of her leaving her ancestral environment must be deemed most remarkable and praiseworthy.

    * v.44 : I.e., in order to wade into it, or perhaps to swim through it, thus braving the seemingly fathomless deep: possibly a symbolic indication of the fear which a human being may feel when his own search after truth forces him to abandon the warm, soothing security of his erstwhile social and mental environment, and to venture into the – as yet – unknown realm of the spirit.
    * I.e., not a dangerous, bottomless deep, as it appeared at first glance, but, rather, the firm, glass-clear light of truth: and with her perception of the ever-existing difference between appearance and reality, the Queen of Sheba comes to the end of her spiritual journey.



    (* Alter her throne---is a continuation of the narrative of the previous verses in which the throne of the Queen is carried to Solomons kingdom and disguised. ---one can read the full Quranic story in any English translation of the Quran.)


    (Though I do not use Muhammed Asad myself...the overall message of understanding the difference between illusions and Reality, Truth and falsehood by relying on God through humility and gratefulness comes through in the Quranic verses even without a Tafsir.)

    It was interesting to know the perspective of a Christian---but I would caution that people verify the content by double checking the actual Quranic stories.
    If I were a Muslim I would be very concerned about all the folklore in the Qur'an that is supposed to be revelation from God.

    The video only touched on a few. There is more.

    http://www.answering-islam.org/Books...rces/index.htm

    http://www.bible.ca/islam/islam-kora...s-dr-morey.htm

  11. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by Christian3 View Post
    If I were a Muslim I would be very concerned about all the folklore in the Qur'an that is supposed to be revelation from God.
    ---are you similarly concerned about all the stories/parables in your NT?

    http://www.dictionary.com/browse/parable

    Parable---definition
    noun
    1.
    a short allegorical story designed to illustrate or teach some truth, religious principle, or moral lesson.
    2.
    a statement or comment that conveys a meaning indirectly by the use of comparison, analogy, or the like.

    Word Origin
    from Old French parabole, from Latin parabola comparison, from Greek parabolē analogy, from paraballein to throw alongside, from para- 1 + ballein to throw

    Synonyms
    allegory, homily, apologue.


    The Quran says (2:26)

    M. Asad
    Behold, God does not disdain to propound a parable of a gnat, or of something [even] less than that. Now, as for those who have attained to faith, they know that it is the truth from their Sustainer - whereas those who are bent on denying the truth say, "What could God mean by this parable?" In this way does He cause many a one to go astray, just as He guides many a one aright: but none does He cause thereby to go astray save the iniquitous,

    M. M. Pickthall
    Lo! Allah disdaineth not to coin the similitude even of a gnat. Those who believe know that it is the truth from their Lord; but those who disbelieve say: What doth Allah wish (to teach) by such a similitude? He misleadeth many thereby, and He guideth many thereby; and He misleadeth thereby only miscreants;

    Yusuf Ali
    Allah disdains not to use the similitude of things, lowest as well as highest. Those who believe know that it is truth from their Lord; but those who reject Faith say: "What means Allah by this similitude?" By it He causes many to stray, and many He leads into the right path; but He causes not to stray, except those who forsake (the path),-

  12. #130
    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by siam View Post
    ---are you similarly concerned about all the stories/parables in your NT?

    http://www.dictionary.com/browse/parable

    Parable---definition
    noun
    1.
    a short allegorical story designed to illustrate or teach some truth, religious principle, or moral lesson.
    2.
    a statement or comment that conveys a meaning indirectly by the use of comparison, analogy, or the like.

    Word Origin
    from Old French parabole, from Latin parabola comparison, from Greek parabolē analogy, from paraballein to throw alongside, from para- 1 + ballein to throw

    Synonyms
    allegory, homily, apologue.


    The Quran says (2:26)

    M. Asad
    Behold, God does not disdain to propound a parable of a gnat, or of something [even] less than that. Now, as for those who have attained to faith, they know that it is the truth from their Sustainer - whereas those who are bent on denying the truth say, "What could God mean by this parable?" In this way does He cause many a one to go astray, just as He guides many a one aright: but none does He cause thereby to go astray save the iniquitous,

    M. M. Pickthall
    Lo! Allah disdaineth not to coin the similitude even of a gnat. Those who believe know that it is the truth from their Lord; but those who disbelieve say: What doth Allah wish (to teach) by such a similitude? He misleadeth many thereby, and He guideth many thereby; and He misleadeth thereby only miscreants;

    Yusuf Ali
    Allah disdains not to use the similitude of things, lowest as well as highest. Those who believe know that it is truth from their Lord; but those who reject Faith say: "What means Allah by this similitude?" By it He causes many to stray, and many He leads into the right path; but He causes not to stray, except those who forsake (the path),-
    No, I am not concerned about the parables.

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