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KITAB, QURAN & ARABIC

CHAPTER 1     KITAB, QURAN & ARABIC –     IS "ARABIC" THE NAME OF A LANGUAGE OF MIDDLE EAST AND "QURAN&quo...

Saturday, 6 June 2020

MY METHOD TO UNDERSTAND THE BOOK QURAN




HOW I UNDERSTAND THE BOOK QURAN?

We have been following the so called well established meanings of the book Quran since ages but still we yearn to know / understand more about its intrinsic message. The reason is our soul knows we are missing something of great importance therefore we always try to seek knowledge through different ways. We are not satisfied with whatever we know and it is a good sign of being alive. Today the most prominent and the easiest way to seek information / knowledge are through social media. We must unlearn first, very often our inner urge desire to seek validation or confirmation of whatever we already know. Where religion or especially the book Quran is concern nobody wants to become a student, every Tom, Dick and Harry wants to be a Teacher, I am included. When everyone is a teacher or an expert of the book Quran it becomes very difficult for a real student to know what is right.

Please note this write-up is very important for those who are really interested to know the right method to understand the nuances of the book Quran, so please read the article attentively and very carefully. The most important features in the book Quran is to understand its vibrant vocabularies or terms that are specifically composed for the readers to understand the meanings from within the context. The beauty of this book is usually we don’t need to search for the meaning outside the Quran. As the language of the book Quran is very old we need to take extra efforts to extract the contextual meanings of some monumental terms or vocabularies from the different frame of references spread all over its format. The verses of the book Quran are called ayaats in Arabic but the actual meaning of Ayaat is signs. The basic purpose of any sign is to communicate, express, indicate, mark, point or demonstrate instructions to the readers or viewers. Complex signs are open to many interpretations; it cannot be understood only by knowing the language but must have overall comprehension of the subject. Basic knowledge of Arabic is an added advantage but not necessary for the initial student of the book Quran.

The problem is devoted Muslims will never find any fault in the traditional interpretation of the book Quran as they are not ready to unlearn or think out of what they have been taught. For them beating women, giving half share of the property to females, marrying slave girls, keeping 4 wives, considering women as impure at the time of menstruation, treating women like fields, killing non believers are normal as they think it is the commandment of God but such fallacious portrayal of the message of the Quran is more harmful than the ignorance of the message. The message of the book Quran is for the peacefulness of our soul / self but such foolish guidelines will never ever take them to the essence of the real content of the message. The proof of this statement is that we can see the plight of majority of the followers of this book. There are only two options for the followers of this book either leave this book and use their divine brain or search for the logical / rational interpretation of this book but following it blindly has more dangerous consequences.

Following the established meanings crafted by the theologians will take you nowhere; your plight will remain the same. My poor writing skills might not able to prop up the crux of the message which this wonderful book possesses, but I will try my best to explain it in a very concise manner.

To doubt and misunderstand is the first step to understand any information or knowledge, the message of the book Quran is no exception. We all are conditioned from childhood to blindly follow and hold certain beliefs which mold our future perspective. As we grow older our perspective becomes stronger and it becomes the base of our faith. To think outside the self made parameters of faith is considered blasphemy by haloed theologians, an unforgivable sin believed by the “keepers of faith” and the “society” at large. The believers too are very happy living in the holy cocoon weaved by the continuous chain of 1441 year old clerics.  

More than intelligence it needs courage to speak what we feel and think contrary to the beliefs of majority. Unfortunately the society does not like people who ask uncomfortable questions which are against the “standard norms” of thinking. They dislike the research that unsettles their beliefs and cocooned life style; on the contrary they leave no stone unturned to suppress progressive work.

Man is a thinking animal but he is often content or rather satisfied with what he perceives therefore he stops thinking further. But when he start to think it’s obvious that different type of questions would arise in him, why this, why that? How is it? And what it is; doesn’t matter its natural, continue thinking. If you don’t get immediate answers to your questions don’t lose heart keep thinking until you attain the right answers, this will bring peace to your heart, mind and soul. Note there are no wrong questions; just question everything if you really want to understand deeply.

For the beginners to learn Arabic language to understand the book Quran it is not at all important. Just come out of religiosity and study the translation in the language you understand. Try to find faults in the message of existing translations or interpretations, forget for a moment that the book is from God. It is easy to find faults than understand the content. Remove the lenses of faith and belief that you have put on your mind; it is not possible to find fault if your mind is covered with layers of previous indoctrination.

The seeker of knowledge must be ready to digest some bitter facts / truth that come their way while studying the scripture they loved the most. I have seen many ardent fans of the book Quran becoming atheist when they misunderstood the real message of the book Quran. Be careful understand one verse at a time and raise questions on it, don’t be in haste to understand it, have patience, you will only understand when you are ready.

I will show you my way of understanding a single vocabulary of the book Quran by giving one simple example, however the method is tedious unless one has the passion and interest to understand the crux of the message through the text of the Quran itself.

Before undertaking the task to understand this book we must understand the most important term of this book and that term is ALLAH / RABB, without the correct perception of these terms we cannot understand the book Quran. But for the sake of brevity I won’t discuss that topic. Note God does not write books and descend it upon his selected servants, for that we need to understand God and His system of conveyance of message which He conveys through signs [ayaats] or inspiration [wahi]. The term Kitabil Allah is grossly misunderstood as the book Quran.

Majority among us are aware that the meaning of Al-Kitab is book or to be more precise a textbook, this is the most popular interpretation but do the book Quran support this meaning in the given context? When we say Kitab immediately an image of a book with hard cover comes to mind to those who are well versed with Arabic and Urdu language. Let’s see if the book Quran supports this interpretation of Al-Kitab / Kitab as book. We will see its real connotation from the context or from the point of view of how the book Quran describes Al-Kitab / Kitab.

2:2 - ذَلِكَ الْكِتَابُ لاَ رَيْبَ فِيهِ هُدًى لِّلْمُتَّقِيْنَ

It is that script about which there is no doubt guidance for those who are cautious / God conscious.

This verse appears to be a simple translation for normal readers but it is not at all clear for a critical thinking mind. He would wonder which book [Al-Kitab] is this that the author is so emphatically talking about that it contains guidance for those who are cautious or God Conscious; but a conditioned mind would easily come to the conclusion that Al-Kitab simply means the book Quran and what is there to think more about it. Those who are trapped in their beliefs will never question HOW Al-Kitab means the book Quran when they are two different words? The common prattle of so called scholars is that these words interchangeable. No words are interchangeable it has some reason why they are used differently.

The above verse further confidently states that Al-Kitab has guidance for those who take precautions or those are God Conscious [Mutaqi] – A rational mind would ask the conditioned mind how we can get guidance when we don’t understand the Arabic language of the book Quran. We will not touch the topic of Mutaqi as it will make the article lengthier.

Not satisfied with the explanation that Al-Kitab means 114 chapter book in Arabic language a rational mind will try to probe the contextual meaning of Al-Kitab from the various context present within the book Quran. On further investigation one would come across attributes of Al-Kitab from where we can easily understand the essence of the meaning of Al-Kitab without even referring the dictionaries.

My point of contention is that the term Al-Kitab in the context of the Quranic language is not Arabic Quran containing 114 Chapters. Now I will present my case by quoting verses from the book Quran and try to solve the riddle.

1) 2:2 - ذَلِكَ الْكِتَابُ لاَ رَيْبَ فِيهِ هُدًى لِّلْمُتَّقِيْنَ – this verse says al-kitab has guidance for those who are cautious / aware or have knowledge of God.

The verse speaks the truth but if we infer the meaning of al-kitab as the book Quran, frankly it will not make any sense to a rational mind as it can only provide guidance to those who understand its language and I can confidently say that 100 to 99.99 % of the world population does not understand this book Quran including those who claim to be pious Muslims or scholars.

Majority of the Muslims think that the word Kitab or Al-Kitab mention in the book Quran is 114 chapter book in Arabic language revealed to Prophet Mohammed [PBUH]. This assumption is one of the biggest hindrances in understanding the book Quran. When the book Quran says that "This is the Book about which there is no doubt guidance for those who are conscious of Allah"; the simple readers think that the dhalikal-kitab mention in the verse refers to the Arabic book Quran. The innocent readers don't realize how they can receive guidance from an ancient language whose language now is only use for liturgical purpose and not used in daily conversation. How this book Quran can guide when it is open to so many interpretations and all claiming to be correct? If the message of Al-Kitab is universal it must be in the language of Rehman.

2) 2:44 - أَتَأْمُرُونَ النَّاسَ بِالْبِرِّ وَتَنْسَوْنَ أَنفُسَكُمْ وَأَنْـتُمْ تَتْلُونَ الْكِتَابَ أَفَلاَ تَعْقِلُونَWe have been enjoined not to neglect our souls and follow Al-Kitab using our common sense [Aqal] –

Now the question is whether we use our intellect while following / reading the book Quran as the above verse says. Honestly the answer is straight NO, we just copy paste and blindly quote its verses or at the most refer some lexicons to understand the meanings of certain words. Therefore this term Al-Kitab cannot be construed as the book Quran as there no interference of our common sense while following or reading it. The message of the book Quran does not touches the soul but according to the above verse the message of Al-Kitab must reach our souls [nafs] therefore Al-Kitab cannot be inferred as the book Quran.

3) - 2:121 - الَّذِينَ آتَيْنَاهُمُ الْكِتَابَ يَتْلُونَهُ حَقَّ تِلاَوَتِهِ أُوْلَـئِكَ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِهِ وَمَن يَكْفُرْ بِهِ فَأُوْلَـئِكَ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ - Those to whom We have given the script [Al-Kitab] follow it as a fact / reality / duty / right to follow it. They are the ones who continuously feel secure / safe with it. And whoever ignores with it - it is they who are the losers.

The important word يَتْلُونَهُ and تِلاَوَتِهِ does not mean read, recite, study, sing or rehearse - The basic meaning of the word تلو is follow closely without intervention, refer 91:3 for understanding the actual meaning. The above verse is not talking about the book Quran because its language is alien to us but it is instructing us to follow our own inherent script [Al-Kitab] sincerely because it is in our own language - 14: 1- 4

4) - اللّهِ نُورٌ وَكِتَابٌ مُّبِينٌ – 5:15 / 6:59 / 11:6 / 12:1 / 26:2 / 28:2 / 43:2 – Al-Kitab is clear and Allah is Light – the verse signifies that kitab is light which does not require any other extra light to understand it. The kitab is unambiguous [mobin], we cannot say same thing about the book Quran. To understand the book Quran we require intense knowledge of Arabic language, its lexicons and grammar and it can be subject to misinterpretation or can have more than one interpretation therefore al-Kitab al-Mobin cannot be assumed as the book Quran. If this 114 chapter book is called Al-Quran and its meaning is same as Al-Kitab then the book Quran does not fit into the definition of Kitabi Mobin.

5) – 2:101 / 3:23 / 5:44 /8:75 / 9:36 the term Kitabil Allah do not signify that God writes books or verses and sent them through His angels. For that we need to understand the term Allah. This term is the back bone to understand the message of the book Quran. Ironically we discuss, argue about everything except the term Allah / Rabb; we are not even ready to think about those terms. To explain that it will need another long article.

6) - 2:213 / 2:176 / 3:3 / 4:105 / 5:48 Kitabil Haqq – Book of Facts / truth / reality – Can we called the Quran book of facts or truth, what facts / truth is available for the readers of this book. ARE WE ABLE TO DEDUCE THE FACTS AND TRUTH FROM THE BOOK.

7) - / 3:184 / 22:8 / 35:25 – Al-Kitabil Munir – Enlightening Book

8) - / 10:1/ 31:20 Kitabil Hakim / - Wise Book

9) - 13:39 – Ummul Kitab / - Mother of all Books

10) - 16:64 – you won’t find any disagreement in Al-Kitab – but in the book Quran we find disagreement of understanding between different scholars.

11) - / 17:58 /33:6 / 52:2 Kitabil Masturan – well recorded data base – Al-Kitab is well recorded and you won’t find in it any crookedness 18:1

12)  - 37:117 – Kitabal Mustabina – The book which helps to make things clear –

2:146 - الَّذِينَ آتَيْنَاهُمُ الْكِتَابَ يَعْرِفُونَهُ كَمَا يَعْرِفُونَ أَبْنَاءَهُمْ وَإِنَّ فَرِيقاً مِّنْهُمْ لَيَكْتُمُونَ الْحَقَّ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ


Those whom We gave them Al-Kitab they recognize it, as they recognize their own children, and that a group from them hide/conceal the truth while they are knowing.

6:20 - الَّذِينَ آتَيْنَاهُمُ الْكِتَابَ يَعْرِفُونَهُ كَمَا يَعْرِفُونَ أَبْنَاءَهُمُ الَّذِينَ خَسِرُواْ أَنفُسَهُمْ فَهُمْ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ

To those whom We brought / ensued them the script [Al-Kitab], they recognized it as they recognized their own natural constitutions / children, those who lost themselves [nafs], so they do not believe.
Do we recognize Al-Kitab as we recognize our own children?

21:10 - لَقَدْ أَنزَلْنَا إِلَيْكُمْ كِتَابًا فِيهِ ذِكْرُكُمْ أَفَلَا تَعْقِلُونَ

We have brought down to you a Script [Kitab], in it is your preserved memory, so do you not reason /understand?
Al-Kitab has your remembrance / memory – Al-Kitab is our inherent memory card in which we are the topic.

39:41 - إِنَّا أَنزَلْنَا عَلَيْكَ الْكِتَابَ لِلنَّاسِ بِالْحَقِّ فَمَنِ اهْتَدَى فَلِنَفْسِهِ وَمَن ضَلَّ فَإِنَّمَا يَضِلُّ عَلَيْهَا وَمَا أَنتَ عَلَيْهِم بِوَكِيلٍ

Verily We have sent down the script upon you with Truth / Facts, for agitated mind. He, then, that receives guidance benefits his own soul: but he that strays injures his own soul. Nor are you set over them along a manager.
Al-Kitab is for our soul / Nafs

40:53 - وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا مُوسَى الْهُدَى وَأَوْرَثْنَا بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ الْكِتَابَ
And We had certainly given Moses guidance, and We caused the Bani Israel to inherit the Script [Al-Kitab]

Why only Bani Israel can inherit or have the book in their genes or blood? Who is Bani Israel, have we ever questioned this?

Please sincerely study the references provided and see if the meaning of Al-Kitab can be inferred as the book Quran. To understand a simple vocabulary of the book Quran we need to collect all the attributes used to describe that word in order to attain the correct comprehensive concept of the word. We are not always lucky to find so much supportive attributes to describe a single word but when some words are important it is properly explained by the many context of the book Quran.
If the book Quran says Kitabil Haqq we cannot ignore Kitabi Mobin or  Kitabal Mustabina or Kitabil Allah or Al-Kitabil Munir and so on… we have study all the aspect of Al-Kitab mention in the Quran. We cannot come to conclusion by just understanding few attributes.

CONCLUSION: After understanding the different qualities / attributes of Al-Kitab from the book Quran a rational open mind can never accept the meaning of Al-Kitab as the 114 chapter book Quran. The word Al-Kitab mention in the book Quran represents our inherent script which speaks to us clearly in our own language and whoever read, understand, study their unique script are enlightened and successful.

WE CANNOT UNDERSTAND THE BOOK QURAN UNLESS WE DEDUCE THE ESSENCE OF TERM ALLAH AND RABB IN THE SAME WAY AS WE DEDUCTED THE ESSENCE OF AL-KITAB.

Have you have ever pondered? Why in 112:1 قُلْ هُوَ اللَّهُ أَحَدٌ Ahad means ONE or Only One and in the same surah 112:4 وَلَمْ يَكُن لَّهُ كُفُوًا أَحَدٌ Ahad means none, anyone…? Is it not bad translation?


IF WE WANT TO UNDERSTAND ALLAH ONE NEEDS TO DEDUCE THE SIGNS [AYAATS] RELATED TO ALLAH / RABB AND MUST UNDERSTAND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ALL THE ATTRIBUTES, ESPECIALLY WAHID, AHAD, ZAHIR, BATIN, WASI AND OTHERS. 



EVERY SINGLE KEY WORD MUST BE UNDERSTOOD CONTEXTUALLY IF WE REALLY WANT TO DECODE THE SIGNS OF THIS MAGNIFICENT BOOK ON HUMAN THOUGHTS. THE SURVIVAL OF HUMAN EXISTENCE IS BASED ON HIS OWN THOUGHTS.


ahleaqal.com


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