PDA

View Full Version : Is this the Kahf of ahl Al kahf?



جوري
03-04-2007, 01:17 AM


http://www.sacred-destinations.com/t...n-sleepers.htm

According to legend, seven young Christian boys, refusing to submit to the persecutions of Emperor Decius (249-51 AD), fled to these caves with a group of Roman guards in hot pursuit. The guards mercilessly sealed up the cave with the boys inside.

The seven boys fell asleep, and slept for what seemed to them to be one night. They were awakened by an earthquake that broke the cave's seals and wandered back into town to buy some bread. To their shock, they found themselves in the 5th century! Times had changed and Christianity was now the state religion.

The Seven Sleepers later died natural deaths, and were buried in their cave. It wasn't long before the site became a destination for pilgrimages and many wished to be buried nearby.

The account dates from the 6th century in Christian documents. Interestingly, the Seven Sleepers also appear in the Qur'an (Koran); in this version, the boys are accompanied by a dog (Sura 18).

This site at Ephesus, one of the many caves used by Seven Sleepers throughout Anatolia (others are located in Akhisar, Manisa, Sardes, Tarsus, and Antakya, to name a few), is actually a grouping of small churches dating to the time of the persecutions. The churches are superimposed in the rock and contain crypts carved into the walls.


The actual cave site has been fenced off, but remains a draw to die-hard pilgrims. Currently, a hole in the fence provides access.


The Cave of the Seven Sleepers - Kusadasi.biz - includes interactive "3D Live Pix" of the cave
Quran 18: "The Cave" - online text in English
Chardri, "The Seven Sleepers of Ephesus" - online English text of an Anglo-Norman account
Ephesus Travel Forum - TripAdvisor
Reply

Login/Register to hide ads. Scroll down for more posts
NoName55
03-04-2007, 02:20 AM
:sl:

I would like to add this if I may

A Parable of Blessing
The Significance and Message of the Qur'anic Account of 'The Companions of the Cave'

The Parable of 'The Companions of the Cave' in Context

The eighteenth chapter of the Qur’an, entitled “The Sūra of the Cave” (Sūrat al-Kahf) has long been recognized among Muslims to be a goldmine of spiri*tual riches and guidance for those who would recite it, contemplate it, and thereby plumb the depths of meaning contained therein. Its virtues are ex*tolled in a number of hadiths. According to one of these, this sūra was “spread abroad by 70,000 angels.” Another proclaims that “whoever recites the sūra of the Companions of the Cave on Friday will have all of his sins forgiven until the following Friday, plus three days more, he will be given light that reaches to Heaven, and he will be protected from the temptations of the Anti-Christ (al-dajjāl).”[1]

Al-Tha’lab relates on the authority of Samurah ibn Jundub that the Prophet once said, “Whoever recites ten verses of Sūrat al-Kahf from memory will not be harmed by the wiles of the Anti-Christ, and he who recites the entire sūra will enter Paradise.”[2] Moreover, given that the crowning miracle of Islam “is not the incarnation of God, but a book,”3 the central importance of this sūra may be seen in the striking parallel drawn by one author between the Friday recitation of sūra 18 and the Christian liturgy of the Eucharist. “In Islam the Body is the book, and the part that represents the whole is sūra 18.”4

Sūra 18 begins with an introductory section which sets forth the themes which recur throughout the sūra as a whole. The focus of the present study is the parable of “the Companions of the Cave” (ahl al-kalf) in verses 9-26. This parable is followed by a series of exhortations to the Prophet concerning truth-telling, forbearance toward believers, and promises of rewards to the faithful (vv. 27-31), after which he is urged to relate another parable

This article appeared in The Muslim World Vol. LXXXIII, No. 3-4, July-October, 1993

End Notes

[1] These are attributed by al-Qurtuhi to Ishāq ibn ‘Abdallāh ibn Abi Farwah. (Abu ‘Abdallāh Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Ansāri al-Qurtubi. Al-Jami’li Ahkām al-Qur’ān Vol. 10 [Cairo Dār al-Kitāb al-‘Arabi li al-Tibā’ah Wa aI-Nashr, 1967], 346)

[2] Ibid
The Incident

Chapter 18 of Holy Qur’an, Suratul Khaf describes the history of odd numbered youngmen in verses 9 to 27. Allah relates their story since they “are a wonder among our portents.” (v.9). The incident in short, was as follows:
The companions were persecuted by the state because they converted to a faith contrary to state’s pagan religion. They were firmly of the conviction: “.... Our Lord is the Lord of heavens and earth. We cry unto no god beside Him.. “ (v.14). Then “the young men fled for their refuge to the cave...” (v.10) where they fell asleep. God kept them asleep for at least 300 years. When they woke up they exchanged words that they might have been inside the cave for a day or even less. Then one of them went out to buy Halal food only to find their silver coin had gone obsolete! The commentators of Qur’an add that when they woke up their religion had become the state religion and there was no persecution any more; the companion then returned to the cave and their life came to an end.

Who Were They?

There had been, and still currently is, more than one view on their identity. But it appears the identities have already converged upon one single group of persons.
There is an identical story in Christianity about the seven sleepers of Ephesus. After Christ his Apostles like Barnabas, and even the self-appointed Apostle Paul along with other followers of Christ did missionary work in present day Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Iraq, etc. which then belonged to Byzantine Empire. Some youths of the city of Ephesus were among the converts. The youths went into hiding during the rule of a tyrant on whose identity there is a confusion between Decius (also called Decianus) and Nero. They woke up during the reign of Theosodius-II. We can read this account in Edward Gibbon’s monumental “The rise and fall of Roman Empire” and in other western works.


Generally, commentators of Qur’an do not identify the companions of the Cave with the ephesians. English translator Mohammed Marmaduke Pickthall, for example, thinks “........ it would seem rash to identify the story with that of the Christian seven sleepers”. He says, “It must belong..... to rabbinical lore” since the Qur’anic revelation about the incident came in response to a test question put to Prophet (Pbuh) by Jewish rabbis of Madina through Mushrik Arabs. English commentator Abdullah Yusuf Ali, on the other hand, undoubtingly attributes the episode to the Ephesians.
Inspired by Qur’anic account and possibly also by the rabbinical and Christian lore current then, Khaleefa Waathiq (842-846 AD) instituted an expedition to locate the Cave, but unsuccessfully, it appears. This author is not aware of any sources of information in the annals of Islam on discovery of the cave by the expedition.
Nevertheless, the Cave in question has already been located! It is at Amman, Capital of Jordan. At this site today the bones of the companions, those of their dog and their utensils are exhibited in three separate glass cases with identification boards. The sign board outside the cave declares in Arabic and English:
Cave of the seven sleepers Byzantine tombs - one mentioned in the Qur’an in the story of the seven sleepers.
Notwithstanding the inhibitions of Pickthall and others, we see that the sleepers are identified with the Ephesians by Jordanian archaeologists. The youths may well have fled South to Amman from Ephesus, a distance of about 900 kms. as the crow flies. Also there is no reason why Jews should not pose Prophet (Pbuh) a question relating to a Christian lore. For, early converts from paganism to unity of God did not call themselves “Christians”. They considered themselves only as members of Judaism as preached by Jesus.
The photographs of the cave front and the exhibits were published in the February 1998 issue of Muslim Murasu, reputed Tamil monthly. They are reproduced here with their kind permission.

Scientific Facts


Let us now come to the topic of discussion namely, scientific content and other implications of the Qur’anic incident of the Cave. The verses 9 to 26 describing the incident are worthy of deep philosophical contemplation. But God has also kept latent in them quite a few scientific facts, especially, verses 18 and 25. They were discovered only after many long centuries of this Qur’anic revelation and a certain modern practice came to vogue based upon one such discovery. In this respect they are truly wonderful signs proving the truth of Qur’an! Stages and Types of Sleep
Firstly, Allah says that the companions tarried inside the cave for more than 300 years. Momins never doubt He could keep them alive that long. But they must certainly be curious about the means. God points out in verse 18: “And even though they were asleep thou wouldst have deemed them awake ...”. Continuing the verse God explains the reason for this illusion of wakefulness: “..... and we caused them to turn over to the right and to the left, ...”. It is also possible, as Yusuf Ali suggests, that their eyes were open as it happens partially to many of us in sleep. Such a phenomenon of suspended animation is certainly known to happen in nature. Scientists call it hibernation.
When we sleep everyday we go through five or six cycles consisting of shallow, medium and deep states called alpha, beta and gamma phases. Deeper the sleep, lower are the frequencies and intensity of heartbeat, respiration and blood pressure. Still deeper state occurs under hypnosis but the subconscious becomes well ‘awake’ and becomes accessible for two-way communication. A far deeper ‘superconscious’ state is realised in the practice of yoga in which respiration is very shallow and its frequency falls to just about one per minute, heartbeat decreasing correspondingly. Not merely the subconscious, but the soul itself is claimed to become awake in yogi state. Investigative research is being carried out extensively all over the world on the physiology, psychology and psychosomatic therapeutic value of yoga.

Hibernation - Nature’s Solution

Let us come back to hibernation. Many forms of life are found even in the northernmost reaches of earth, including the poles (so also around the South Pole for that matter). In winter the entire region turns into a vast icescape - not to speak of the permafrost. Birds migrate to southern hemisphere to escape the cold. Some animals move over to warmer southern parts. But some others, both vegetarians and non-vegetarians stay. How do they manage food? They do not. No leaves, grains, fruits or roots are available for themselves or their usual prey which themselves are totally absent. No fish is accessible. But Almighty has certainly made an excellent arrangement for keeping them alive!
As bitter winter creeps in creatures like polar bear, certain species of squirrels, rabbits, etc. seek resting places where they roll up like a ball and go into hibernation, that is motionless sleep for 4 or 5 months. Their respiration and heartbeat become far too shallow and slow to notice. This greatly lowers the energy demand. The minimal energy consumed is derived from the reserve of their body fat. Hibernation lasts till the return of spring, when they wake back in a bony-skinny shape.
Yogis demonstrate weeks of death like feat, barely breathing, with absolutely no intake of food or water. Spiritual masters are known to have been in trance for months in a ‘frozen’ state with absolutely no movements or food. We readily accept the phenomena of hibernation, yogi state and spiritual trance. It should not therefore be difficult at all to believe in a far superior, God-induced inert state of the companions of the Cave extending over a few centuries in a strange condition bordering between life and death!

Prolonging Lifespan


Scientific research is afoot to induce hibernation in human beings. If it succeeds there will be a big breakthrough in space exploration. A large number of specialists in the various requisite disciplines can then be taken in space missions to other planets requiring many months to complete. The experts can be put into hibernation during the journey times, woken up whenever their tasks are due and reverted when over. This strategy will minimise demand on food, water, air and other provisions significantly. As a consequence, sizes and complexity of facilities, spacecraft and fuel storage will all come down, making the missions feasible at all on the first hand.
In 21st Century cosmonauts may be bound to planets of other stars, or even to galaxies. The mission durations may be in decades, even centuries or millennia! Then they have to tackle not only the problem of room discussed above but also the lifespan of travellers. The answer may well lie in hibernation in which the metabolism will slow down along with life functions of respiration, heartbeat, etc. So will be, it is believed, the ageing process. In other words, lifespan of cosmonauts can be increased through hibernation.
It is quite understandable that the life of the companions of the Cave was prolonged by a similar or even a far superior process. They were still young when they woke up. However, it appears that they went back to sleep after a few hours and then died, as God willed.

Prolongation Quite Practical

We saw that natural hibernation keeps animals alive. But does it prolong life, even if it be suspended animation, as scientists wish to have in the case of cosmonauts? Will they be as nearly young when woken up as they were before going to sleep? The law may not permit experiments in hibernation on humans to settle the issues. But there is ample practical evidence in confirmation of the point, at least on other forms of life.
Man has modified fertilisation process. He has now under his control the time of fertilisation of human and animal offspring. He hybridises livestock. For these ends human and animals spermatozoa and ova are kept immobile by freezing to very low temperatures as long as required, even years. Then they are defreezed and ‘brought back to life’ and then used for fertilisation in the womb or in vitro. This well established commonplace practice lends credence to prolongation of the sleepers’ life. ( to be continued )
Reply

Ibn Abi Ahmed
03-04-2007, 02:29 AM
:sl:

Allahu Alam. It can be or cannot be. It is mentioned in Tafsir Ibn Kathir:
Several of the earlier and later Tafsir scholars have mentioned that they were sons of the kings and leaders of Byzantium, and that they went out one day to one of the festivals of their people. They used to gather once a year outside the city, and they would worship idols and offer sacrifices to them. They had an arrogant, tyrannical king who was called Decianus, who commanded and encouraged the people to do that. They had an arrogant, tyrannical king who was called Decianus, who commanded and encouraged the people to do that. When the people went out to attend this gathering, these young men went out with their fathers and their people, and when they saw their people's actions with clear insight, they realized that the prostrations and sacrifices the people were offering to their idols should only be dedicated to Allah, Who created the heavens and the earth.
http://www.islamicboard.com/islamic-...h-al-kahf.html
However the point is that there may exist many many types of such caves that qualify the signs mentioned and we do not know them. There is a reason why Allaah did not give us the location of the cave, because it was an unimportant detail. The lesson to learned is in the story and that is what we should focus on Insha'Allaah.

And the fact that the article mentions the following makes it doubtful:
This site at Ephesus, one of the many caves used by Seven Sleepers throughout Anatolia (others are located in Akhisar, Manisa, Sardes, Tarsus, and Antakya, to name a few), is actually a grouping of small churches dating to the time of the persecutions. The churches are superimposed in the rock and contain crypts carved into the walls.
The youth were on Tawheed, not on the shirk of Christians and as quoted above, the people at the time of the Youth worshipped idols.
Reply

Skillganon
03-04-2007, 02:34 AM
:sl:

Or all of this scientific explanation of How Allah(swt) kept them alive for 300 years can be false.

Allah(swt) kept the alive that is much you have to affirm but how is not known and we do not delve into it.

:w:
Reply

Welcome, Guest!
Hey there! Looks like you're enjoying the discussion, but you're not signed up for an account.

When you create an account, you can participate in the discussions and share your thoughts. You also get notifications, here and via email, whenever new posts are made. And you can like posts and make new friends.
Sign Up
جوري
03-04-2007, 02:35 AM
Wow no name thank you so much for all your efforts.. a couple of years ago I went to the National Gallery in DC with a Christian friend of mine who seemed clueless as to whom they might have been. It was an Islamic exhibit stating the tale was common to both Christians and Muslims --but from the bewildered look on my friend's face I can tell it wasn't a story that was that popular amongst Christians. Was rather happy to find this article today to pass it along. Will certainly forward what you have written as to this find... I am much obliged
thank you
Reply

NoName55
03-04-2007, 02:56 AM
Originally Posted by PurestAmbrosia
Wow no name thank you so much for all your efforts.. a couple of years ago I went to the National Gallery in DC with a Christian friend of mine who seemed clueless as to whom they might have been. It was an Islamic exhibit stating the tale was common to both Christians and Muslims --but from the bewildered look on my friend's face I can tell it wasn't a story that was that popular amongst Christians. Was rather happy to find this article today to pass it along. Will certainly forward what you have written as to this find... I am much obliged
thank you
:sl:
Your are most welcome! I, however, did not write it but a fellow called M.I. Liyaqat Ali wrote it in 1998 on the subject of "Quraan And science" and I just happen to have had it on disk since. I am a collector of such articles

ma'asalaama
:w:
Reply

جوري
03-04-2007, 03:36 AM
shokran to everyone... Bros Madani that is very interesting. Yes I know what you mean by them not being moshrik. I don't think that site I included was meant to speak favorably of Muslims? ... I was just amused for the mere fact that my friend who is very much a cognoscenti of history and art, had no idea of this story so naturally I felt it probably had no basis in Christianly. But the above article seems to put a name and a cave to the whole event so naturally it piqued my curiosity.....
Reply

NoName55
03-04-2007, 06:14 AM
:sl:
Originally Posted by Skillganon
Or all of this scientific explanation of How Allah(swt) kept them alive for 300 years can be false.
why? Some logic or a daleel or 2 from Qura'an or Hadith would be nice
Originally Posted by Skillganon
Allah(swt) kept the alive that is much you have to affirm but how is not known and we do not delve into it.
Because?

:w:
Reply

Skillganon
03-04-2007, 06:25 AM
Originally Posted by NoName55
:sl:why? Some logic or a daleel or 2 from Qura'an or Hadith would be nice
Because?

:w:
:sl:

Well bro, you are asking daleel from Quran and hadith. I am the one suppose to ask you.

If their is not than basing explanation on science in certain case can be false.

Either by:

1. Their is some defeciency or falseness in the scientific explanation itself.
2. Their could be other explanation that is not made known or we are not aware of.

I am trying to say is when it trying to bring science in it be careful, very careful.

:w:
Reply

Hey there! Looks like you're enjoying the discussion, but you're not signed up for an account.

When you create an account, you can participate in the discussions and share your thoughts. You also get notifications, here and via email, whenever new posts are made. And you can like posts and make new friends.
Sign Up

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 06-14-2015, 07:32 PM
  2. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 01-05-2015, 07:51 PM
  3. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 03-20-2013, 08:31 PM
  4. Replies: 4
    Last Post: 11-04-2008, 10:55 AM
  5. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 05-26-2008, 05:17 PM

IslamicBoard

Experience a richer experience on our mobile app!