What They Said about the Quran (part 1 of 2)
Description: The statements of western scholars who have studied Islam about the Quran. Part 1: Introduction and their statements.
- By iiie.net
- Published on 25 Jan 2010
- Last modified on 10 Nov 2013
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Humanity has received the Divine guidance only through two channels: firstly the word of God, secondly the Prophets who were chosen by God to communicate His will to human beings. These two things have always been going together and attempts to know the will of God by neglecting either of these two have always been misleading. The Hindus neglected their prophets and paid all attention to their books that proved only word puzzles which they ultimately lost. Similarly, the Christians, in total disregard to the Book of God, attached all importance to Christ and thus not only elevated him to Divinity, but also lost the very essence of Tawheed (monotheism) contained in the Bible.
As a matter of fact, the main scriptures revealed before the Quran, i.e., the Old Testament and the Gospel, came into book-form long after the days of the Prophets and that too in translation. This was because the followers of Moses and Jesus made no considerable effort to preserve these Revelations during the life of their Prophets. Rather, they were written long after their death. Thus, what we now have in the form of the Bible (the Old as well as the New Testament) is a translation of individual accounts of the original revelations which contain additions and deletions made by the followers of the said Prophets. On the contrary, the last revealed Book, the Quran, still remains in its pristine form. God Himself guaranteed its preservation and the entire Quran was written during the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him, on separate pieces of palm leaves, parchments, bones etc.. Moreover, there were over 100 000 Companions who memorized either the entire Quran or parts of it. The Prophet himself used to recite it to the Angel Gabriel once a year and twice in the year he died. The first Caliph Abu Bakr entrusted the collection of the whole Quran in one volume to the Prophet’s scribe, Zaid Ibn Thabit. This volume was with Abu Bakr till his death. Then it was with the second Caliph Umar and after him it came to Hafsa, the Prophet’s wife. It was from this original copy that the third Caliph Uthman prepared several other copies and sent them to different Muslim territories.
The Quran was so meticulously preserved for it is the Book of Guidance for humanity till the end of time. That is why it does not address the Arabs alone in whose language it was revealed. It speaks to man as a human being:
“O mankind, what has deceived you concerning your Lord, the Generous.”
The practicality of the Quranic teachings is established by the examples of Prophet Muhammad and the good Muslims throughout the ages. The distinctive approach of the Quran is that its instructions are aimed at the general welfare of man and are based on the possibilities within his reach. In all its dimensions the Quranic wisdom is conclusive. It neither condemns nor tortures the flesh nor does it neglect the soul. It does not humanize God nor does it deify man. Everything is carefully placed where it belongs.
Actually the scholars who allege that Muhammad was the author of the Quran claim something which is humanly impossible. Could any person of the sixth century C.E. utter such scientific truths as the Quran contains? Could he describe the evolution of the embryo inside the uterus so accurately as we find it in modern science?
Secondly, is it logical to believe that Muhammad, who up to the age of forty was marked only for his honesty and integrity, to suddenly begin the authorship of a book matchless in literary merit and the equivalent of which the whole legion of the Arab poets and orators of the highest caliber could not produce? Lastly, is it logical that Muhammad, who was known as Al-Ameen (the trustworthy) in his society and who is still admired by the non-Muslim scholars for his honesty and integrity, came forth with a false claim and was able to train thousands of men, who were men of integrity to establish the best human society on earth?
Surely, any sincere and unbiased searcher of truth will come to believe that the Quran is the revealed Book of God.
Without necessarily agreeing with all they said, we furnish here some opinions of important non-Muslim scholars about the Quran. Readers can easily see how the modern world is coming closer to reality regarding the Quran. We appeal to all open-minded scholars to study the Quran in the light of the aforementioned points. We are sure that any such attempt will convince the reader that the Quran could never be written by any human being.
Goethe, quoted in T.P. Hughes’ Dictionary of Islam, p. 526:
“However often we turn to it [the Quran] at first disgusting us each time afresh, it soon attracts, astounds, and in the end enforces our reverence...Its style, in accordance with its contents and aim is stern, grand, terrible – ever and anon truly sublime – Thus this book will go on exercising through all ages a most potent influence.”
Maurice Bucaille, The Quran and Modern Science, 19812, p. 18:
“A totally objective examination of it [the Quran] in the light of modern knowledge, leads us to recognize the agreement between the two, as has been already noted on repeated occasions, It makes us deem it quite unthinkable for a man of Mohammed’s time to have been the author of such statements on account of the state of knowledge in his day. Such considerations are part of what gives the Quranic Revelation its unique place, and forces the impartial scientist to admit his inability to provide an explanation which call solely upon materialistic reasoning.”
What They Said about the Quran (part 2 of 2)
Description: The statements of western scholars who have studied Islam about the Quran. Part 2: Additional statements.
- By iiie.net
- Published on 25 Jan 2010
- Last modified on 23 Mar 2010
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Dr. Stiengass, quoted in T.P. Hughes’ Dictionary of Islam, pp. 526-527:
“A work, then, which calls forth so powerful and seemingly incompatible emotions even in the distant reader - distant as to time, and still more so as a mental development- a work which not only conquers the repugnance which he may begin its perusal, but changes this adverse feeling into astonishment and admiration, such a work must be a wonderful production of the human mind indeed and a problem of the highest interest to every thoughtful observer of the destinies of mankind.”
Maurice Bucaille, The Bible, the Quran and Science, 1978, p. 125:
“The above observation makes the hypothesis advanced by those who see Muhammad as the author of the Quran untenable. How could a man, from being illiterate, become the most important author, in terms of literary merits, in the whole of Arabic literature? How could he then pronounce truths of a scientific nature that no other human being could possibly have developed at that time, and all this without once making the slightest error in his pronouncement on the subject?”
Dr. Steingass, quoted inn Hughes’ Dictionary of Islam, p. 528:
“Here, therefore, its merits as a literary production should perhaps not be measured by some preconceived maxims of subjective and aesthetic taste, but by the effects which it produced in Mohammed’s contemporaries and fellow countrymen. If it spoke so powerfully and convincingly to the hearts of his hearers as to weld hitherto centrifugal and antagonistic elements into one compact and well organized body, animated by ideas far beyond those which had until now ruled the Arabian mind, then its eloquence was perfect, simply because it created a civilized nation out of savage tribes, and shot afresh woof into the old warp of history.”
Arthur J. Arberry, The Koran Interpreted, London: Oxford University Press, 1964, p. x:
“In making the present attempt to improve on the performance of my predecessors, and to produce something which might be accepted as echoing however faintly the sublime rhetoric of the Arabic Koran, I have been at pain to study the intricate and richly varied rhythms which – apart from the message itself – constitute the Koran’s undeniable claim to rank amongst the greatest literary masterpieces of mankind. This very characteristic feature – ‘that inimitable symphony’, as the believing Pickthall described his Holy Book, ‘the very sounds of which move men to tears and ecstasy’ – has been almost totally ignored by previous translators; it is therefore not surprising that what they have wrought sounds dull and flat indeed in comparison with the splendidly decorated original.”
Quran on the Quran
“Hence, indeed, We made this Quran easy to bear in mind: who, then, is willing to take it to heart.” (Quran 54:17, 22, 32, 40 [self repeating])
“Will they not meditate on the Quran, or are there locks on the hearts?” (Quran 47:24)
“Surely this Quran guides to that which is most upright and gives good news to the believers who do good works that they shall have a great reward.” (Quran 17:9)
“Surely We have revealed the Reminder (Quran) and We will most certainly guard it (from corruption).” (Quran 15:9)
“Praise be to God Who has revealed the Book (Quran) to His slave (Muhammad) and has not placed therein any crookedness.” (Quran 18:1)
“And certainly We have explained in this Quran every kind of example; and man is most of all given to contention. And nothing prevents men from believing when the guidance comes to him, and asking forgiveness of their Lord, except that what happened to the ancients should overtake them, or that the chastisement should come face to face with them.” (Quran 18:54-55)
“And We reveal (stage by stage) of the Quran that which is a healing and a mercy for believers and to the unjust it causes nothing but loss after loss.” (Quran 17:82)
“And if you are in doubt concerning that which We reveal unto Our slave (Muhammad) then produce a Surah (chapter) of the like thereof, and call your witnesses besides God if you are truthful.” (Quran 2:23)
“And this Quran is not such as could be forged by those besides God, but it is a verification ( of revelations) that went before it and a fuller explanation of the Book – there is no doubt – from the Lord of the Worlds.” (Quran 10:37)
“So when you recite the Quran, seek refuge in God from Satan the Outcast.” (Quran 16:98)