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    Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

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    It is so beautiful and seems to sum up the core ethic of Islam.

    It is not righteousness that ye turn your faces Towards east or West; but it is righteousness- to believe in Allah and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book, and the Messengers; to spend of your substance, out of love for Him, for your kin, for orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer, for those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves; to be steadfast in prayer, and practice regular charity; to fulfil the contracts which ye have made; and to be firm and patient, in pain (or suffering) and adversity, and throughout all periods of panic. Such are the people of truth, the Allah-fearing.
    لَّيْسَ الْبِرَّ أَن تُوَلُّوا وُجُوهَكُمْ قِبَلَ الْمَشْرِقِ وَالْمَغْرِبِ وَلَٰكِنَّ الْبِرَّ مَنْ آمَنَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ
    وَالْمَلَائِكَةِ وَالْكِتَابِ وَالنَّبِيِّينَ وَآتَى الْمَالَ عَلَىٰ حُبِّهِ ذَوِي الْقُرْبَىٰ وَالْيَتَامَىٰ وَالْمَسَاكِينَ وَابْنَ
    السَّبِيلِ وَالسَّائِلِينَ وَفِي الرِّقَابِ وَأَقَامَ الصَّلَاةَ وَآتَى الزَّكَاةَ وَالْمُوفُونَ بِعَهْدِهِمْ إِذَا عَاهَدُوا
    وَالصَّابِرِينَ فِي الْبَأْسَاءِ وَالضَّرَّاءِ وَحِينَ الْبَأْسِ أُولَٰئِكَ الَّذِينَ صَدَقُوا وَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُتَّقُونَ


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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Assalaamu Alaykum,

    As Muslims, we must regard every single letter, word and ayah in the Qur'an as important. With regards to the commentary given for this verse, it mentions:


    ...Ath-Thawri recited: (but Birr is the one who believes in Allah,) and said that what follows are the types of Birr. He has said the truth. Certainly, those who acquire the qualities mentioned in the Ayah will have indeed embraced all aspects of Islam and implemented all types of righteousness; believing in Allah, that He is the only God worthy of worship, and believing in the angels the emissaries between Allah and His Messengers.

    The `Books' are the Divinely revealed Books from Allah to the Prophets, which were finalized by the most honorable Book (the Qur'an). The Qur'an supercedes all previous Books, it mentions all types of righteousness, and the way to happiness in this life and the Hereafter. The Qur'an abrogates all previous Books and testfies to all of Allah's Prophets, from the first Prophet to the Final Prophet, Muhammad, may Allah's peace and blessings be upon them all...

    [Tafseer Ibn Katheer]
    Read more here: http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?opt...=265&Itemid=36
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    Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?




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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Assalaamu Alaykum,

    As Muslims, we must regard every single letter, word and ayah in the Qur'an as important. With regards to the commentary given for this verse, it mentions:
    ...Ath-Thawri recited: (but Birr is the one who believes in Allah,) and said that what follows are the types of Birr. He has said the truth. Certainly, those who acquire the qualities mentioned in the Ayah will have indeed embraced all aspects of Islam and implemented all types of righteousness; believing in Allah, that He is the only God worthy of worship, and believing in the angels the emissaries between Allah and His Messengers.

    The `Books' are the Divinely revealed Books from Allah to the Prophets, which were finalized by the most honorable Book (the Qur'an). The Qur'an supercedes all previous Books, it mentions all types of righteousness, and the way to happiness in this life and the Hereafter. The Qur'an abrogates all previous Books and testfies to all of Allah's Prophets, from the first Prophet to the Final Prophet, Muhammad, may Allah's peace and blessings be upon them all...

    [Tafseer Ibn Katheer]
    ualaykum Assalaamu warahmatu llila wabaracatu,

    Wow, so this verse has a name? Do all verses have a name? Al-Birr. Righteousness. That's fantastic! I really love this verse!

    I have a few comments, but perhaps it would be best to start be asking your guidance is to the degree I can question the interpretations of Islamic scholars? I mean, I am brand new coming to Islam (and Christianity for that matter, so I question that too!).

    So I have some problems with what is said at the link you posted...two to start I guess:

    As for the explanation of this Ayah, Allah first commanded the believers to face Bayt Al-Maqdis, and then to face the Ka`bah during the prayer. This change was difficult for some of the People of the Book, and even for some Muslims. Then Allah sent revelation which clarified the wisdom behind this command, that is, obedience to Allah, adhering to His commands, facing wherever He commands facing, and implementing whatever He legislates, that is the objective. This is Birr, Taqwa and complete faith. Facing the east or the west does not necessitate righteousness or obedience, unless it is legislated by Allah.
    So, the Christians face east, the Jews west, the Muslims switched to Mecca. Does Allah legislate facing Mecca or is that a hadeeth? I like to lie on my back personally, but formal Friday prayers toward Mecca are great for my spirit too, I feel.

    The `Books' are the Divinely revealed Books from Allah to the Prophets, which were finalized by the most honorable Book (the Qur'an). The Qur'an supercedes all previous Books, it mentions all types of righteousness, and the way to happiness in this life and the Hereafter. The Qur'an abrogates all previous Books and testfies to all of Allah's Prophets, from the first Prophet to the Final Prophet, Muhammad, may Allah's peace and blessings be upon them all.
    Where does the Qu'ran say that other Books are superceded and abrogated? Al-Birr does not say this.

    Thanks very much!
    Last edited by Muhammad; 09-06-2012 at 03:10 PM. Reason: Christian beliefs removed

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    I'm sorry for not being clear. Al-Birr is the word translated as righteousness in the above verse. Hence, the commentary is saying that the verse is mentioning types of righteousness.

    When it comes to detailed interpretation of the Qur'an, this is a science in Islam and requires a great degree of knowledge and understanding. It is based upon various tools and principles, like knowledge of the Arabic language. For this reason, it is not up to lay people to interpret as they wish. Rather they must refer to the scholars who have applied the correct methodology in understanding the Qur'an.

    So, the Christians face east, the Jews west, the Muslims switched to Mecca. Does Allah legislate facing Mecca or is that a hadeeth?
    I don't know about the directions other religions face. But in Islam, Allaah has legislated the direction we face. It is mentioned in the Qur'an [2:144] and has been mentioned in the Hadeeth, and it is important to note that both these sources are from Allaah.

    Where does the Qu'ran say that other Books are superceded and abrogated? Al-Birr does not say this.
    As mentioned in my PM, a verse which mentions the Qur'an's superiority over other scriptures is as follows:

    And We have revealed to you, [O Muhammad], the Book in truth, confirming that which preceded it of the Scripture and as a criterion over it. So judge between them by what Allah has revealed and do not follow their inclinations away from what has come to you of the truth.
    [5: 48]

    Regarding the word translated as 'critierion' here (Muhaymin in Arabic), in one of the commentaries to this verse, it explains:

    ...These meanings are similar, as the word Muhaymin includes them all. Consequently, the Qur'an is trustworthy, a witness, and dominant over every Scripture that preceded it. This Glorious Book, which Allah revealed as the Last and Final Book, is the most encompassing, glorious and perfect Book of all times. The Qur'an includes all the good aspects of previous Scriptures and even more, which no previous Scripture ever contained. This is why Allah made it trustworthy, a witness and dominant over all Scriptures. Allah promised that He will protect the Qur'an and swore by His Most Honorable Self...


    [Tafseer Ibn Katheer]

    Furthermore, The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) got angry when he saw 'Umar ibn Al-Khattab holding a sheet containing some verses from the Torah and he said to him, "O 'Umar! Are you in doubt? Have I not brought (the Message) as clear as white? If my brother Musa ('alaihi salam) had been alive, he would have followed me." [Narrated by Ahmed and others].

    This link may also be helpful to read: http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/in...cles&id=138540

    I hope this helps to clarify.
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    Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?




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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Edit: Brother Muhammad already answered above, below is more or less the same thing

    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    ualaykum Assalaamu warahmatu llila wabaracatu,

    Wow, so this verse has a name? Do all verses have a name? Al-Birr. Righteousness. That's fantastic! I really love this verse!
    Asalaamu Alaikum,

    I believe it's just a name people use to describe this verse due to its significance. The verse itself has Al-birr mentioned in it, here;


    It is not righteousness(Al-birr) that ye turn your faces Towards east or West [2:177]


    For a more specific understanding, please read this - http://www.islamicawakening.com/view...p?articleID=59

    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    So, the Christians face east, the Jews west, the Muslims switched to Mecca. Does Allah legislate facing Mecca or is that a hadeeth? I like to lie on my back personally, but formal Friday prayers toward Mecca are great for my spirit too, I feel.
    Allah(swt) legislated this change here;


    We have certainly seen the turning of your face, [O Muhammad], toward the heaven, and We will surely turn you to a qiblah with which you will be pleased. So turn your face toward al-Masjid al-Haram. And wherever you [believers] are, turn your faces toward it [in prayer]. Indeed, those who have been given the Scripture well know that it is the truth from their Lord. And Allah is not unaware of what they do. [Qur'an 2:144]

    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    Where does the Qu'ran say that other Books are superceded and abrogated? Al-Birr does not say this.
    The Qur'an says it in many places such as;


    And this is a Book which We have sent down, bringing blessings, and confirming (the revelations) which came before it: that thou mayest warn the mother of cities and all around her. Those who believe in the Hereafter believe in this (Book), and they are constant in guarding their prayers. [6:92]

    (I have come to you), to attest the Law which was before me. And to make lawful to you part of what was (Before) forbidden to you; I have come to you with a Sign from your Lord. So fear Allah, and obey me. [3:50]

    Say: Whoever is an enemy to Gabriel-for he brings down the (revelation) to thy heart by Allah's will, a confirmation of what went before, and guidance and glad tidings for those who believe,- [2:97]


    And here's a verse which uses a very significant word, "Muhayiminan", which is explained by the scholars and translators further below;


    And We have sent down to you (O Muhammad SAW) the Book (this Quran) in truth, confirming the Scripture that came before it and Mohayminan (trustworthy in highness and a witness) over it (old Scriptures). So judge between them by what Allah hath revealed, and follow not their vain desires, diverging from the Truth that hath come to thee. [5:48]

    Tafsir Ibn Kathir:
    “(and Muhayminan over it) means entrusted over it, according to Sufyan Ath-Thawri who narrated it from Abu Ishaq from At-Tamimi from Ibn `Abbas. `Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn `Abbas said, "Muhaymin is, ‘the Trustworthy’. Allah says that the Quran is trustworthy over every Divine Book that preceded it.'' This was reported from `Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Mujahid, Muhammad bin Ka`b, `Atiyyah, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, `Ata' Al-Khurasani, As-Suddi and Ibn Zayd. Ibn Jarir said, "The Quran is trustworthy over the Books that preceded it. Therefore, whatever in these previous Books conforms to the Quran is true, and whatever disagrees with the Qur'an is false.'' Al-Walibi said that Ibn `Abbas said that Muhayminan means, ‘Witness’. Mujahid, Qatadah and As-Suddi said the same. Al-`Awfi said that Ibn `Abbas said that Muhayminan means, ‘dominant over the previous Scriptures’. These meanings are similar, as the word Muhaymin includes them all. Consequently, the Quran is trustworthy, a witness, and dominant over every Scripture that preceded it. This Glorious Book, which Allah revealed as the Last and Final Book, is the most encompassing, glorious and perfect Book of all times. The Quran includes all the good aspects of previous Scriptures and even more, which no previous Scripture ever contained. This is why Allah made it trustworthy, a witness and dominant over all Scriptures.”


    Tanwir al-Miqbas min Tafsir Ibn Abbas:
    “(And unto the have We revealed the Scripture) We have sent you Gabriel with the Qur'an (with the Truth) to make plain the Truth and falsehood, (confirming) the statement of Allah's divine Oneness and some laws (whatever Scripture was before it) whatever Scriptures were before it, (and a watcher over it) a witness upon all the Scriptures before it; it is also said: a witness upon the ruling of stoning; and it is also said: a watcher over all previous Scriptures.”



    Abdullah Yusuf Ali:
    “After the corruption of the older revelation, the Quran comes with a twofold purpose: (1) to confirm the true and original Message and (2) to guard it or act as a check to its interpretation. The Arabic word ‘Muhaymin’ is very comprehensive in meaning. It means one who safeguards, watches over, stands witness, preserves and upholds. The Quran safeguards “the Book”, for it has preserved within it the teachings of all the former Books. It watches over these Books in the sense that it corroborates the Word of Allah which has remained intact in them. It stands as a witness because it bears testimony to the Word of Allah contained in these Books and helps to sort it out from the interpretations and commentaries of the people which were mixed with it; what is confirmed by the Quran is the Word of Allah and what is against it is that of the people.


    Muhammad Asad:

    “The participle ‘muhaymin’ is derived from the quadrilateral verb ‘haymana’, ‘he watched [over a thing]’ or ‘controlled [it]’, and is used here to describe the Quran as the determinant factor in deciding what is genuine and what is false in the earlier Scriptures.”


    Maariful Quran:

    “The address is to the Holy Prophet (saw) saying that to him Allah has revealed the Quran which confirms the Torah and Injeel, Books previous to it, and is their custodian as well. This is because, after the people of the Torah altered the Torah and the people of the Injeel made changes in the Injeel, it was the Quran alone which turned out to be the kind overseer and protector which exposed the alterations made by them, lit up truth and reality in their proper perspective. Even today the true teachings of the Torah and Injeel still survive through the Quran.”



    In other words, all the Prophets(pbut) such as Moses(pbuh) and Jesus(pbuh) came along with their own scriptures/messages for their own people. However, over time, their scriptures either became lost or vastly corrupted, and thus the Qur'an is the final revalation, which removes these errors and confirms that which is only the truth.
    Last edited by Perseveranze; 09-06-2012 at 06:20 PM.
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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    I'm sorry for not being clear. Al-Birr is the word translated as righteousness in the above verse. Hence, the commentary is saying that the verse is mentioning types of righteousness.
    Quote Originally Posted by Perseveranze View Post
    For a more specific understanding, please read this - ...
    Clear as a bell, now. Thanks for the clarifications.

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    When it comes to detailed interpretation of the Qur'an, this is a science in Islam and requires a great degree of knowledge and understanding. It is based upon various tools and principles, like knowledge of the Arabic language. For this reason, it is not up to lay people to interpret as they wish. Rather they must refer to the scholars who have applied the correct methodology in understanding the Qur'an.
    I thought the Qu'ran also says we are each individually responsible for interpreting the Qu'ran.

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    I don't know about the directions other religions face. But in Islam, Allaah has legislated the direction we face. It is mentioned in the Qur'an [2:144] and has been mentioned in the Hadeeth, and it is important to note that both these sources are from Allaah.
    I see. Thank you.

    I will need to take more time on the other subthread and do some serious reading.

    Thanks for your responses

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    As mentioned in my PM, a verse which mentions the Qur'an's superiority over other scriptures is as follows:

    And We have revealed to you, [O Muhammad], the Book in truth, confirming that which preceded it of the Scripture and as a criterion over it. So judge between them by what Allah has revealed and do not follow their inclinations away from what has come to you of the truth.
    [5: 48]
    Quote Originally Posted by Perseveranze View Post
    The Qur'an says it in many places such as;


    And this is a Book which We have sent down, bringing blessings, and confirming (the revelations) which came before it: that thou mayest warn the mother of cities and all around her. Those who believe in the Hereafter believe in this (Book), and they are constant in guarding their prayers. [6:92]

    (I have come to you), to attest the Law which was before me. And to make lawful to you part of what was (Before) forbidden to you; I have come to you with a Sign from your Lord. So fear Allah, and obey me. [3:50]

    Say: Whoever is an enemy to Gabriel-for he brings down the (revelation) to thy heart by Allah's will, a confirmation of what went before, and guidance and glad tidings for those who believe,- [2:97]


    And here's a verse which uses a very significant word, "Muhayiminan", which is explained by the scholars and translators further below;


    And We have sent down to you (O Muhammad SAW) the Book (this Quran) in truth, confirming the Scripture that came before it and Mohayminan (trustworthy in highness and a witness) over it (old Scriptures). So judge between them by what Allah hath revealed, and follow not their vain desires, diverging from the Truth that hath come to thee. [5:48]
    Regarding the word Muhaymin...
    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Regarding the word translated as 'critierion' here (Muhaymin in Arabic)
    Quote Originally Posted by Perseveranze View Post
    And here's a verse which uses a very significant word, "Muhayiminan", which is explained by the scholars and translators further below;

    I totally agree with this:
    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Ibn Jarir said, "The Quran is trustworthy over the Books that preceded it. Therefore, whatever in these previous Books conforms to the Quran is true, and whatever disagrees with the Qur'an is false.''
    I totally agree with this:
    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Al-`Awfi said that Ibn `Abbas said that Muhayminan means, ‘dominant over the previous Scriptures’. These meanings are similar, as the word Muhaymin includes them all. Consequently, the Quran is trustworthy, a witness, and dominant over every Scripture that preceded it. This Glorious Book, which Allah revealed as the Last and Final Book, is the most encompassing, glorious and perfect Book of all times. The Quran includes all the good aspects of previous Scriptures and even more, which no previous Scripture ever contained. This is why Allah made it trustworthy, a witness and dominant over all Scriptures.”
    I especially like: Abdullah Yusuf Ali, as usual:
    Abdullah Yusuf Ali:
    “After the corruption of the older revelation, the Quran comes with a twofold purpose: (1) to confirm the true and original Message and (2) to guard it or act as a check to its interpretation. The Arabic word ‘Muhaymin’ is very comprehensive in meaning. It means one who safeguards, watches over, stands witness, preserves and upholds. The Quran safeguards “the Book”, for it has preserved within it the teachings of all the former Books. It watches over these Books in the sense that it corroborates the Word of Allah which has remained intact in them. It stands as a witness because it bears testimony to the Word of Allah contained in these Books and helps to sort it out from the interpretations and commentaries of the people which were mixed with it; what is confirmed by the Quran is the Word of Allah and what is against it is that of the people.
    And finally, this comment even more makes my point, below, I think:
    Maariful Quran:
    “The address is to the Holy Prophet (saw) saying that to him Allah has revealed the Quran which confirms the Torah and Injeel, Books previous to it, and is their custodian as well. This is because, after the people of the Torah altered the Torah and the people of the Injeel made changes in the Injeel, it was the Quran alone which turned out to be the kind overseer and protector which exposed the alterations made by them, lit up truth and reality in their proper perspective. Even today the true teachings of the Torah and Injeel still survive through the Quran.
    My thought is that the Qu'ran completes the other Scripture by enforcing what is true about them. This is not to say that the Qu'ran says everything that is true about other Scripture. Therefore, other Scripture can say true things, as enforced by the Qu'ran, that the Qu'ran does not mention. There are additional truths in other Scripture.

    The Qu'ran is a key to unlock other Scriptural truths.

    This comment is so dangerously close to what I agreed not to do in PMs that it would be justified that I were banned. This is all I will say about it unless invited to comment further by responses from the participants so far.

    Peace and Mercy and Forgiveness.

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    I thought the Qu'ran also says we are each individually responsible for interpreting the Qu'ran.
    I am not sure what gave you this impression.

    Please see this link for a more detailed explanation on this point: http://islaam.net/main/display.php?id=1350&category=4
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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    My thought is that the Qu'ran completes the other Scripture by enforcing what is true about them. This is not to say that the Qu'ran says everything that is true about other Scripture. Therefore, other Scripture can say true things, as enforced by the Qu'ran, that the Qu'ran does not mention. There are additional truths in other Scripture.

    The Qu'ran is a key to unlock other Scriptural truths.
    The problem is that we are dealing with thoughts and opinions instead of factual information. You have picked out things that appeal to you but disregarded the rest, including clear statements such as, 'This Glorious Book, which Allah revealed as the Last and Final Book, is the most encompassing, glorious and perfect Book of all times. The Qur'an includes all the good aspects of previous Scriptures and even more, which no previous Scripture ever contained. This is why Allah made it trustworthy, a witness and dominant over all Scriptures.'

    Such an approach is wrong.

    Guidance is something which only comes from Allaah. He is the One who sent down the Qur'an and sent the Messenger (may Allaah's peace and blessings be upon him) to teach us how to attain salvation. His is the best speech and the best guidance. It therefore makes sense to strive to benefit from that guidance and learn from all He teaches us, not place our own desires and opinions forward and create our own religion. Islam is legislated by Allaah, not by the whims of people.

    It is not for a believing man or a believing woman, when Allah and His Messenger have decided a matter, that they should [thereafter] have any choice about their affair. And whoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger has certainly strayed into clear error.
    [33:36]

    We could go on endlessly distorting all truths by putting our thoughts and opinions forward, but that destroys the purpose of seeking the truth. Rather, Islam means total submission to Allaah the Exalted, humbling oneself, and obeying His commands and heeding prohibitions without objection.


    The only statement of the [true] believers when they are called to Allah and His Messenger to judge between them is that they say, "We hear and we obey." And those are the successful. [24:51]


    Regards.
    Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?




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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    The problem is that we are dealing with thoughts and opinions instead of factual information. You have picked out things that appeal to you but disregarded the rest, including clear statements such as, 'This Glorious Book, which Allah revealed as the Last and Final Book, is the most encompassing, glorious and perfect Book of all times. The Qur'an includes all the good aspects of previous Scriptures and even more, which no previous Scripture ever contained. This is why Allah made it trustworthy, a witness and dominant over all Scriptures.'

    Such an approach is wrong.

    Guidance is something which only comes from Allaah. He is the One who sent down the Qur'an and sent the Messenger (may Allaah's peace and blessings be upon him) to teach us how to attain salvation. His is the best speech and the best guidance. It therefore makes sense to strive to benefit from that guidance and learn from all He teaches us, not place our own desires and opinions forward and create our own religion.
    Ok, enough of talking about other Scriptures...

    So, it becomes a question of Tafseer and Ta'weel...

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by reefedjib
    I thought the Qu'ran also says we are each individually responsible for interpreting the Qu'ran.
    I am not sure what gave you this impression.
    These do seem to lead me in that direction:




    "Verily this Qur'aan leads to the path that is most right" [17:9]



    "And We have sent down the Book to you as an explanation for everything, a guidance, a mercy and glad tidings for Muslims" [16:89]





    "This (Qur'aan) is a declaration for mankind, a guidance and an admonition for those who ward off evil" [3:138]



    at least in the sense that it "the Book to 'you'" (e.i. me, you and us)

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Please see this link for a more detailed explanation on this point: (link)
    And it seems that the authors highlight the importance of being educated in the hadeeths and the Ayats (what is the name of one who can recite the Qu'ran at will?), yet that there is this context that is important and may lead to multiple interpretations (Ta'weel).

    So, there is this tension between having only one interpretation of the Qu'ran, so as to not have Schism, yet there should be multiple interpretations due to Ta'weel? So there are heretical killings of Muslims throughout its history and many of these are Sufis?

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    These do seem to lead me in that direction:


    at least in the sense that it "the Book to 'you'" (e.i. me, you and us)
    I see you quoted the exact verses from the article. Of course, the Qur'an is for each and every single person. Its guidance is to be heeded by all. But I do not see any indication in these words inviting each individual to interpret the Qur'an. It goes against common sense. If you read these verses in the article, I am sure you must have read its explanation that followed:

    But this in no way implies that a person who is unaware of the numerous hadeeth of the Prophet (SAW) in explaining the Qur'aan, and of the reasons behind the revelation of specific verses, and of the intricacies of Arabic grammar and principles of rhetoric, and of the various qiraaat, and of the knowledge of the abrogated rulings, and of all of the other topics of 'uloom al-Qur aan will benefit from the Qur'aan to the same degree that a person who does know these facts will. For example, an Arabic linguist or grammarian might be able to see a certain wisdom behind the phrasing of a verse that the average person may not. A person specialised in the topics of 'uloom al-Qur aan will be better able to grasp the intended meanings of a verse, and derive rulings from it, in contrast to the average layman, who is not qualified to derive rulings from the Qur'aan.
    As-Suyootee also discusses the necessity of 'tafseer in his al-Itqaan.[4] He begins by stating that it is a known fact that Allaah communicates with man in a way that the will be able to understand. This is the reason that every messenger has been sent in the language of his people. However, there are three basic reasons why tafseer is necessary despite these facts. First of all, Allaah uses the most clear, eloquent and concise language, and in doing so the meaning is clear to those who are well-grounded in the Arabic language, but not so clear to those who are not. Secondly, the Qur'aan itself does not always mention the events or references for which each particular verse was revealed, and these must be known in order for the verse to be fully and totally understood. Lastly, some words may have multiple meanings, and it is the job of the person that does tafseer to explain what is meant by the word.
    It can be said that the purpose of tafseer is to elaborate the principles which the Qur'aan came to clarify:[5]

    So, there is this tension between having only one interpretation of the Qu'ran, so as to not have Schism, yet there should be multiple interpretations due to Ta'weel?
    No, I'm not aware of any such tension, nor did anyone say there should be any number of interpretations. I think you are reading in things into the article, which I thought explained the concept quite clearly.

    So there are heretical killings of Muslims throughout its history and many of these are Sufis?
    I would advise we focus on the initial questions and establish the basics before making accusations and confusing multiple issues. At least that is what people who are sincere in wanting to learn about Islam usually do.
    Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?




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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    I see you quoted the exact verses from the article. Of course, the Qur'an is for each and every single person. Its guidance is to be heeded by all. But I do not see any indication in these words inviting each individual to interpret the Qur'an. It goes against common sense. If you read these verses in the article, I am sure you must have read its explanation that followed
    I was carrying the thread of thought from the previous section where the second definition of Ta'weel was the second:
    2) Tafseer is used in explaining a word which carries only one meaning, whereas taweel is used in choosing one of the connotations of a word that possesses many connotations.
    whereas taweel is used when one of the possible connotations of a verse or word is chosen over the others due to external factors.
    and thus everybody can find the Straight Path through this Book? And is not the Qur'aan a complete source of guidance in and of itself, as it says,
    Indeed, it is true that anyone who approaches the Qur'aan with a pure heart, seeking the guidance of Allaah, will find it. As Allaah says,
    My apologies for not including those quotes to be clear in the postulated support for Ta'weel, followed by your quote of the article clearly supporting Tafseer.

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    No, I'm not aware of any such tension, nor did anyone say there should be any number of interpretations. I think you are reading in things into the article, which I thought explained the concept quite clearly.
    The different interpretations comes from different mufassir, I think. I am amazed such different interpretations have not existed in Islamic history... In fact, there have been these different interpretations as evidenced by the treatment of some Sufis. I was using that as the example of the tensions between Tafseer and Ta'weel.

    Are there no examples of differing interpretations within Islam?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    I would advise we focus on the initial questions and establish the basics before making accusations and confusing multiple issues. At least that is what people who are sincere in wanting to learn about Islam usually do.
    I am absolutely sincere in wanting to learn about Islam.

    The chain that brought us here, as best as I can extract, is:

    1. My question to you
    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    ualaykum Assalaamu warahmatu llila wabaracatu,

    Wow, so this verse has a name? Do all verses have a name? Al-Birr. Righteousness. That's fantastic! I really love this verse!

    I have a few comments, but perhaps it would be best to start be asking your guidance is to the degree I can question the interpretations of Islamic scholars? I mean, I am brand new coming to Islam (and Christianity for that matter, so I question that too!).
    2. Your statement, that
    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    I'm sorry for not being clear. Al-Birr is the word translated as righteousness in the above verse. Hence, the commentary is saying that the verse is mentioning types of righteousness.

    When it comes to detailed interpretation of the Qur'an, this is a science in Islam and requires a great degree of knowledge and understanding. It is based upon various tools and principles, like knowledge of the Arabic language. For this reason, it is not up to lay people to interpret as they wish. Rather they must refer to the scholars who have applied the correct methodology in understanding the Qur'an.
    3. My uneducated response that
    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    I thought the Qu'ran also says we are each individually responsible for interpreting the Qu'ran.s
    4. And then your posting of the link.

    5. Followed by my observation that there is a historical tension between Tafseer and Ta'weel, as evidenced by the killing of heretics.

    Am I wrong? I mean to cause no trouble, just understand the variety of interpretations and the room for differing interpretations by educated Islamic Scholars.

    Best Regards.

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    in terms of interpreting meanings,

    heres a link to an article.

    http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/in...cles&id=135491


    also in regards to this:

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    The only statement of the [true] believers when they are called to Allah and His Messenger to judge between them is that they say, "We hear and we obey." And those are the successful. [24:51]
    i would argue that the first sentence alone gives indication.

    you do not have the messenger pbuh, so who exactly do you hear and obey?

    because that is part of the quran also, follow the wrong one and you know where that gets you.. loosely paraphrased. i mean most problems have any number of reasonable solutions.


    self reflection and pondering is paramount. i mean if all that "is" is as it should be, then for what purpose is guidance?

    how do you work out which one to follow?

    well you use your criterion of judgement.. in islam its the quran.

    i mean there is no compulsion in religion and freedom of choice.

    so i think

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    The only statement of the [true] believers when they are called to Allah and His Messenger to judge between them is that they say, "We hear and we obey." And those are the successful. [24:51]
    has to be taken in its entirety or its out of context.
    Last edited by M.I.A.; 09-07-2012 at 01:26 PM.

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Greetings Callisto,

    Quote Originally Posted by Callisto View Post
    I was carrying the thread of thought from the previous section where the second definition of Ta'weel was the second:
    ...

    My apologies for not including those quotes to be clear in the postulated support for Ta'weel, followed by your quote of the article clearly supporting Tafseer.
    I think we are getting muddled because you have mixed your original questions with new questions arising from the article, and some questions which have nothing to do with the article. If you could ask questions one at a time, that would be helpful.

    The different interpretations comes from different mufassir, I think. I am amazed such different interpretations have not existed in Islamic history... In fact, there have been these different interpretations as evidenced by the treatment of some Sufis. I was using that as the example of the tensions between Tafseer and Ta'weel.

    Are there no examples of differing interpretations within Islam?
    There are many examples. However, differing interpretations are not always in conflict with each other. Look at the example above regarding the meaning of the word Muhayminan. All the meanings given for that word are complementary and enhance our overall understanding. As I said above, the science of tafseer is very vast and detailed, and only through studying it will one understand how to properly deal with differences in interpretation.

    5. Followed by my observation that there is a historical tension between Tafseer and Ta'weel, as evidenced by the killing of heretics.
    For someone 'brand new' to Islam, your 'observations' indicate otherwise. Where exactly did you draw this observation from?
    Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?




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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?



    Quote Originally Posted by M.I.A. View Post
    i would argue that the first sentence alone gives indication.

    you do not have the messenger pbuh, so who exactly do you hear and obey?
    The Messenger, sallallaahu alayhi wasallam, was sent for all of humanity from his time until the end of time. His teachings are very much alive through what has been narrated from him. Hence we can still hear and obey.

    self reflection and pondering is paramount.
    Of course, but that's not the same as tafseer. Pondering will not tell you everything. The article you gave says itself:
    ...An important practice which can help a person reflect upon the Quran is to study the biography of the Prophet . We must know that he was the authentic interpreter of the Quran and that his manners were all derived from the Quran. We must also know that he was a practical Quran walking on earth, in the sense that he clarified to verses that were revealed in general terms and verses that may have sounded confusing. Knowing all this makes a Muslim realize that in order to properly be able to reflect upon the Quran, he must return to the biography of the Prophet, sallallaahu alayhi wa salla, and the authentic Sunnah.

    Knowing the historical context in which specific verses of the Quran were revealed increases the reader's understanding, because many verses were revealed pertaining to a certain incident.

    Without knowing the reason for its revelation and what it came down to address, one could read a verse but not really understand what it intends. For example the following saying of Allaah (which means): “So do not weaken and do not grieve, and you will be superior if you are [true] believers. If a wound should touch you- there has already touched the [opposing] people a wound similar to it” [Quran: 3: 139-140]. This saying was addressed to the companions, may Allah pleased with them, during the battle of Uhud in which they suffered causalities fighting the disbelieving enemies. They are being rallied to fight harder by Allah's reminder that they had already inflicted similar suffering upon these enemies during their previous battle of Badr.

    One other helpful factor in reflecting on and understanding the Book of Allaah, is referring to the trustworthy books of interpretation of the Quran, and reading what the scholars have said...

    i mean if all that "is" is as it should be, then for what purpose is guidance?
    To separate truth from falsehood. To teach us everything we need to know. Could we work out details of how to earn Allaah's pleasure without the guidance in the Qur'an and Sunnah?
    how do you work out which one to follow?

    well you use your criterion of judgement.. in islam its the quran.

    i mean there is no compulsion in religion and freedom of choice.

    so i think


    has to be taken in its entirety or its out of context.
    The Qur'an itself must be taken in its entirety. So we must remember that:

    And whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will never be accepted of him, and in the Hereafter he will be one of the losers. [3:85]
    Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?




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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Greetings Calisto

    I don't whether its a genuine problem or Non Muslim do intentionally take an ayat out of context.Can you judge or make a judgement about a whole book by one or two statements.In this Case AUTHOR is the Lord Of All Worlds.
    SO Please Read This Again

    Indeed, they who conceal what Allah has sent down of the Book and exchange it for a small price - those consume not into their bellies except the Fire. And Allah will not speak to them on the Day of Resurrection, nor will He purify them. And they will have a painful punishment. 2:174

    Those are the ones who have exchanged guidance for error and forgiveness for punishment. How patient they are in pursuit of the Fire! 2:175

    That is [deserved by them] because Allah has sent down the Book in truth. And indeed, those who differ over the Book are in extreme dissension. 2:176

    Righteousness is not that you turn your faces toward the east or the west, but [true] righteousness is [in] one who believes in Allah , the Last Day, the angels, the Book, and the prophets and gives wealth, in spite of love for it, to relatives, orphans, the needy, the traveler, those who ask [for help], and for freeing slaves; [and who] establishes prayer and gives zakah; [those who] fulfill their promise when they promise; and [those who] are patient in poverty and hardship and during battle. Those are the ones who have been true, and it is those who are the righteous. 2:177

    O you who have believed, prescribed for you is legal retribution for those murdered - the free for the free, the slave for the slave, and the female for the female. But whoever overlooks from his brother anything, then there should be a suitable follow-up and payment to him with good conduct. This is an alleviation from your Lord and a mercy. But whoever transgresses after that will have a painful punishment. 2:178

    And there is for you in legal retribution [saving of] life, O you [people] of understanding, that you may become righteous. 2:179

    Prescribed for you when death approaches [any] one of you if he leaves wealth [is that he should make] a bequest for the parents and near relatives according to what is acceptable - a duty upon the righteous 2:180

    You may proceed with the debate further.....
    Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?



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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by M.I.A. View Post
    in terms of interpreting meanings,

    heres a link to an article.

    (link)
    Nice article. I am quoting the paragraphs I found very interesting, as regards the authors opinion on personal responsibility to reflect on the meaning of the Qu'ran.

    Quote Originally Posted by Article on Reflection on the Qu'ran
    One other helpful factor in reflecting on and understanding the Book of Allaah, is referring to the trustworthy books of interpretation of the Quran, and reading what the scholars have said. Such books contain many of the interpretations of the Salaf whether the statements of the companions (pbut) or those who came after them. Some of these books of Tafseer (i.e. interpretation) are by At-Tabari, Al-Qurtubi, Ibn Katheer and others. Reading these sources helps the person reading the Quran reflect upon the verses and better understand them.
    Here is the admonition to Tafseer. Reading these quoted articles from islamnet seems a good start that refer to these Tafseer interpretations, no?

    Quote Originally Posted by Article on Reflection on the Qu'ran
    Reciting the Quran attentively while thinking of what one is reading is a matter that was stressed in the Quran, and it helps one reflect. Allaah says (what means): “Say, `I only advise you of one [thing] - that you stand for Allah, [seeking truth] in pairs and individually, and then give thought`” [Quran: 34: 46]. This better helps the reader understand the Quran.
    This is also what we are engaged in, here. It is God's work we are undertaking, no?

    Quote Originally Posted by Article on Reflection on the Qu'ran
    Another important rule regarding reflecting upon the Quran is applying it to reality. This means (in short) that the Quran was not revealed just for a certain period or a specific place;but is applicable during all times and places. One can best understand The Quran and feel it alive, when it is applied to reality and to the issues of the Muslim nation. For example, every era has its own disbelievers and hypocrites and every era has its own 'Pharaohs' and oppressors.

    A serious mistake in this regard is applying verses to those for whom it was not intended, like applying the verses about hypocrites to the believers, or the verses about righteous people to the disbelievers, as this leads to clear and serious misguidance.
    I think this is close to bringing in Ta'weel into the reflection.

    Quote Originally Posted by Article on Reflection on the Qu'ran
    To conclude, we would like to remind the reader with the following prophetic narration, of Abu Hurayrah (pbuh) that the Prophet (pbuh) said:“Any group of people that assemble in one of the Houses of Allah to recite and study the Quran, tranquility will descend upon them, mercy will engulf them, angels will surround them and Allah will make mention of them to those (the angels) in His proximity.” [Muslim]. Note how the narration connected reciting and studying, and made this a precondition for the four magnificent virtues to be achieved.
    I have experienced this many times, no least on this thread.

    Thank you.

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Pondering will not tell you everything.
    no it will not.

    any guidance is from allah swt, i am well aware i could spend my entire life on it and not achieve anything of knowledge.

    but thats the whole point, many times iv been humbled by people that i have no idea about.

    knowledge is no indicator of importance in the real world.

    good conduct and morality are used to judge between us, makes me think about what a position of authority really is.


    i mean that ayah,


    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    “So do not weaken and do not grieve, and you will be superior if you are [true] believers. If a wound should touch you- there has already touched the [opposing] people a wound similar to it” [Quran: 3: 139-140].
    does and should give everybody an indication of the power and fairness of the system imposed by allah swt, it gives comfort to those that have lost.

    it mirrors older scripture in meaning if not words..

    which would imply that the rules never change.. ?god never changes?

    all the more reason to find them.

    but that ayah may make people think about who's eyes and teeth they are willing to spend..

    the prophet pbuh didnt lose that many people and changed the world,

    maybe it is a message of restraint and constant jihad.

    i mean world war 2 sent more men to there deaths each day than that.


    when you get a people worthy to lead, then you will have your ummah.


    ...i dont know?

    maybe they all became muslim.

    truth is stranger than fiction.
    Last edited by M.I.A.; 09-07-2012 at 09:31 PM.

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Greetings Callisto,
    Assalaam Alaykum, Muhammad,

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    I think we are getting muddled because you have mixed your original questions with new questions arising from the article, and some questions which have nothing to do with the article.
    I would assert that while it may seem to have become muddled, it is a symptom of the discussion evolving! ;-)

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    If you could ask questions one at a time, that would be helpful.
    I did start with my #1 from the previous post, in the OP. Is it ok to question the interpretations of educated Islamic scholars. This is where we are now and it has bifurcated into two questions:
    1. Do educated Islamic scholars have different interpretations, based on different Ta'weel? Yes.
    2. Can less Tafseer educated Muslims and non-Muslims question interpretations? M.I.A. posts a link that says yes, within reason.
    There were also two questions I had about [2:177], that have been answered to the degree we want to get into them:
    1. Is it mandated for Muslims to face Mecca? Yes, Allah legislates facing Mecca, but [2:177] says Al-Birr is more important.
    2. Are there truths in other Scriptures that are not in the Qu'ran, that can be validated by the Qu'ran, since the Qu'ran is the cryptographic key to validate other Scripture? Yes. [5:116] is a good example of the Qu'ran invalidating common Christian belief.
    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    There are many examples. However, differing interpretations are not always in conflict with each other.
    That is an excellent point. Thank you!

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    Look at the example above regarding the meaning of the word Muhayminan. All the meanings given for that word are complementary and enhance our overall understanding. As I said above, the science of tafseer is very vast and detailed, and only through studying it will one understand how to properly deal with differences in interpretation.
    Yes, I am impressed that there are 5 opinions of the difference of Tafseer and Ta'weel. I personally like #4...

    4) Aboo Taalib at-Tha'labee held the view that tafseer was the explanation of the literal meaning of the verse, whereas taweel was the actual intent behind the verse. For example, the tafseer of the verse,
    "Verily, your Lord is ever-Watchful" [89:14]





    is that Allaah is aware of all that man does, but the ta'weel is that the verse is a warning to man not to lapse into sins or to belittle the commandments of Allaah.
    ---
    Last edited by Muhammad; 09-08-2012 at 02:54 PM. Reason: sectarian content removed

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    Re: Is Ayat 2:177 an important Ayat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muhammad View Post
    For someone 'brand new' to Islam, your 'observations' indicate otherwise. Where exactly did you draw this observation from?
    I just want to add that being brand new as a muslim, does not mean I am brand new to history.


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