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Offline Mubashir

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Evolutionary process in the Qur'an?
« on: December 02, 2011, 02:32:52 PM »
In chapter 2:20 we read:

[Asad] When your Lord said to the angels, I am putting a successor on earth, they said, Will You place someone there who will cause corruption on it and shed blood, while we glorify You with Your praise and extol Your holiness? [God] answered, Surely, I know that which you do not know.

The word Khalif  has been translated by different translators as:

Successor, viceroy, vicegerent, overlord, supreme religious head, inheritor, deputy, representative, ruler, generations after generations, etc.

If the meaning of Khalif falls more near to successor, then the question arises who the successor succeeds? Is it possible that there existed a generation of humans through an evolutionary process who this 'new' generation would succeed? A new generation with better intelligence and abilities? We also need to keep in mind the concerns raised by the angels here who must have seen the way mankind behaved!

Any comments?

Offline Sardar Miyan

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Re: Evolutionary process in the Qur'an?
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2011, 05:49:56 PM »
Khalifa means a Viceroy I think as Allah had given free will to human being  unlike the angels, the angels told Allah due to free will Humans may creat fsasd etc. Since Allah had blown His energy (ROOH) He made humans as His deputy I think.Wallahualam
May entire creation be filled with Peace & Joy & Love & Light

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Evolutionary process in the Qur'an?
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2011, 05:56:19 PM »
Salamun Alaikum Mubashir,


In chapter 2:20 we read:

I think you may be referring to verse 2:30 (instead of 2:20).


It is in the Angel's response where I think the definition of 'Khalifa' in this context is best understood. The angels seem to have reacted to the 'status' given to man in terms of what they could accomplish as an authority with their own hands. This does not seem to me as a simple succession. Rather a succession with responsibility borne from free-will.

I therefore feel that 'Khalifa' in this context is better rendered as 'viceroy' where man was given an authority on Earth which could be used for constructive and destructive means. It appears that the Angels highlighted the latter on which they based their limited view. However, God's knowledge was complete.

For example, David was made a 'viceroy' (Khalifa) in the earth as noted in 38:26. This is not a reference to simple succession.

It is also clear that the Angels were aware of what happens when such 'vicegerancy' is granted. This could have been based on experiences from other parts of the Universe where God's creatures were given similar power. After all God clearly says he has spread his creation throughout the Universe (42:29).

As I don't incline to the rendering 'successor', in this context but rather, 'viceroy', I would be respectfully unable to comment on what inferences are then derived from it. However, I do accept an evolutionary process as God's mechanism in creating and advancing His creation, but that is a separate topic.

Regards,
Joseph.
 
PS: I agree with brother Sardar's response with regards the best rendering of 'Khalifa' as 'viceroy' in this context.

'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline chadiga

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Re: Evolutionary process in the Qur'an?
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2011, 05:12:58 AM »
salam for all
I have yet to get an idea because of the following, Khilafa on earth. As I look at the Koran as Al Furqan, I always try to explore whether the Bible or other scriptures confirm to us in any form something that exists only as an indication in the Quran.
In the Bible we find the Schoepfungsmythos, which is almost entirely covered with that in the Koran. Then attention is drawn to the Flood, the Bible-by-covered the whole earth. (recent studies seem to confirm this). God then speaks of a new human race which inherited the earth. We see this also in the Koran. Attention is drawn to a new generation after Noah. Only it is not explained, so that we can understand the term in two ways.
1.General: as followers, leaders on Earth
2 by someone specifically as a successor of the preceding (or the beginning man)
If we look at the Schoepfungsmythos the Sumerians, explains the likeness of ourselves.
But the question really is not relevant in one way for the meaning of faith for our believe, it makes absolutely no difference whether we are now in the literal sense successor or not-an investigation in this regard may satisfy our curiosity,but brings us not closer to God  .... Salamu aleikum  wa Rahmatullah

Offline Saba

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Re: Evolutionary process in the Qur'an?
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2011, 05:30:38 AM »
But the question really is not relevant in one way for the meaning of faith for our believe, it makes absolutely no difference whether we are now in the literal sense successor or not-an investigation in this regard may satisfy our curiosity,but brings us not closer to God  .... Salamu aleikum  wa Rahmatullah

Salam Chadiga,

That is quite an important point which you make which is quite often missed. Where there are more than one plausible explanations which don't directly affect our practice of religion today, how far does one go to interpret them? Unless of course there is some fundamental dispute or with those that follow the Bible etc.

But the point you make about satisfying our curiosity is a good one. At what point should one let go? .... interesting.

Saba.