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Offline Tausif Ahmed

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Clueless about Islam without history
« on: July 24, 2020, 06:28:00 PM »
Salam Alikum / Peace be upon you

I don't really know how to put this... and subject I gave to this question was hard to put as well..
I hope this hasn't been addressed before... I did try to find it..

I have been following Quranic approach to Islam as mentioned in Quran since a year or so now.. However I have had this thought in my mind before & recently I read it in a Turkish writer's book as well.

Can we know anything about Islam without hadiths or historical sources apart from Quran? I mean everyone of us, who only follow Quran have been following or are knowledgeable about hadiths & history of Islam particularly of Prophet Muahammad.

But what if there is a non-muslim who is given only Quran... how will he/she know that Quran was revealed in period of 23 years & different circumstances which are also talked about in Quran like migration to madina, or different battles, treaties etc.
How will they know that Prophet Muhammad was a man of 40+ on whom this Quran was revealed.. whereas Quran only mentions his name 4 times.Quran starts by telling this book was revealed on a servant of his... who is he talking of..? Muhammad? I don't know he is mentioned only 4 times in Quran...  Can a person know about all of this from Quran alone? If Quran alone is sufficient..?

What if someone has only Quran & is left on an Island alone where no other sources of history or knowledge exist... the understanding he will derive from Quran will be very different.

What if all of us who follow Quran alone... our memories are erased... will we then able to understand Quran?

Now one reply I can think of to this could be that Quran is sole source of religion and history(to a limited extent, keeping in accordance with Quran) can be read & explained.... but then that would negate the sufficiency of Quran..  :-\

I hope I could express my question properly
"Being crazily in Love with God is a great honor for Believer" ~ Adnan Oktar (Harun Yahya)

Offline Wakas

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Re: Clueless about Islam without history
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2020, 08:20:39 PM »
Are those "details" you mentioned necessary for our salvation/guidance?


Offline Tausif Ahmed

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Re: Clueless about Islam without history
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2020, 05:50:14 AM »
I agree.. Most of them are not...

but just knowing the simple thing that this book was revealed on a person named Prophet Muhammad is not possible by reading only Quran..

And I do think knowing a little bit about the person on whom this book was revealed is important.

EXAMPLE 1


For example a person unaware of any history of Islam read the Quran. They will come to the verse:

And who believe in what has been revealed to you, [O Muhammad], and what was revealed before you, and of the Hereafter they are certain [in faith]. [2:4]


Now.... without the parenthesis or a brief history or introduction of Islam... how would they know that this book was revealed on man named Muhammad..?

I am not talking about minor details... I agree if God didn't mention them then they must be insignificant.... but not knowing on whom this book was revealed is insignificant?

EXAMPLE 2

Only once is prophet Muhammad mentioned in Quran in reference to a revelation revealed upon him...

And those who believe and do righteous deeds and believe in what has been sent down upon Muhammad - and it is the truth from their Lord - He will remove from them their misdeeds and amend their condition. [47:2]


Why should we assume that the phrase ""those who believe.. in what has been sent down upon Muhammad" refers to the Quran? There are no verses before & after which explain this.

Peace
"Being crazily in Love with God is a great honor for Believer" ~ Adnan Oktar (Harun Yahya)

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Clueless about Islam without history
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2020, 11:45:11 AM »
Dear Tausif,

As-salamu alaykum

As you have solicited my opinion by email as well on this, foremost, I’d like to share a few points which for me provide a necessary axiom and a basis for a suitable response to your kind self.


POINT 1

The Quran is not intended to be read in silo. Rather, the narratives of the Quran are to be read in toto as a cohesive, self-contained whole [1]


POINT 2

The Quran deters one from eliciting finer details that are not relevant to religious guidance. He has instructed us to rely on clear matters – miraan zahran [18:22] [2]; [3]


POINT 3

The Quran is sole religious authority for believers. This does not imply that the entire Ahadith corpus is false/inauthentic. They are just not 'authoritative' for religious guidance. Take from them what you will but the Quran must remain the primary source of interpretation and authority. [4]


POINT 4

The personal/early life of the messenger is arguably not important for religious guidance. The Quran also steers one clear of focusing on the name/the personality of the Prophet. The focus of the Quran is primarily on his mission. That is why Prophet Muhammad is mentioned numerous times as a 'messenger', 'a messenger of Allah', 'a warner', 'a prophet', 'a bearer of glad tidings' etc. However, very seldom is he mentioned by name. Similarly, one notes an entire following of Christianity is predicated on the teachings of Prophet Jesus where his early life is largely unknown or focused on. I believe there is a message in that too. Ergo, follow the guidance, not the personalities or lifestyles of the individuals as they were simply a product of their environment [5]. Of course, we send our salutations, our admiration and respect to these noble individuals. However, this should not be conflated with the 'religious guidance' itself. Please note where the Prophet himself as a 'husband' was rebuked in verse 66:1. The Quran separated the personality from his mission clearly in this verse. Please also kindly note that there is no mention of any of the prophet’s companions (other than Zayd [33:37] and his contentious adversary - Abu Lahab [111.1]) or any of the prophet’s wives.


POINT 5

When you pass the Quran to a non-Muslim, do you also hand over the entire corpus of Ahadith (Shia and Sunni canons) and Sira/Maghazi literature to them so that they can make an informed opinion before converting?  My argument to you would be that someone who potentially 'converts/reverts’ does not do so believing in or caring about the prophet or his history. They are arguably agnostic to this at the point of considering the authenticity of the message. How can they have any belief in a prophet when they aren't even convinced of the message at that point? It is arguably the message's authenticity that provides them conviction of the prophethood.

They ‘convert/revert’ in the main based on the power of the Quran's narratives and its ability to convince them that it could only be the word of God. My further argument would be that if one did provide all the Ahadith to a potential ‘convert/revert’, they would possibly find much objectionable content/material which may deter them from considering Islam as an authentic religion based on truth. I have known many ‘converts/reverts’ that weren't aware of the objectionable material attributed to the prophet's life before they took their Shahadah. If they had been, they would arguably never have made that transition.

In contrast, those born in Islam are taught about the prophet first and the message is often left secondary.


FINALLY

You mention (highlighted in brown below):

  • And who believe in what has been revealed to you, [O Muhammad], and what was revealed before you, and of the Hereafter they are certain [in faith]. [2:4]
    Now.... without the parenthesis or a brief history or introduction of Islam... how would they know that this book was revealed on man named Muhammad..?


The word 'ilayka' (ka - pronoun) is in the second person masculine and singular. It is one person to whom this reading is revealed to. The Quran mentions many times that it is a Book that was revealed to the messenger and in a verse clearly states that Muhammad is that messenger of Allah (48:29). With all due respect and in my humble opinion, one would be clutching at straws in desperation to interpret this in any other way whilst keeping the entire Quran as a cohesive unit for interpretation.  If this level of undue scrutiny / approach was taken with any other Scripture or the entire secondary Ahadith corpus in order to demand similar explanations, the entire literary corpora would arguably be decimated.

One should always allow for obvious, best interpretations that derive the ‘best meaning’. [6]

039:018
"Those who listen to the Word (the Quran) and follow the best meaning in it / best of it (Arabic: fayattabi'una ahsanahu) those are the ones whom God has guided and those are the one's endowed with understanding (Arabic: Albabi)"

I hope this helps, God willing,
Joseph


REFERENCES:

[1] HOW TO STUDY THE QURAN – SUGGESTIONS
http://quransmessage.com/articles/how%20to%20study%20the%20quran%20FM3.htm

[2] UNKNOWN TOWNS AND NAMES - WHY FILL IN THE GAPS?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/unknown%20towns%20and%20names%20FM3.htm#

[3] DO NOT COMPLICATE RELIGION - WISDOM FROM SURAH BAQARAH
http://quransmessage.com/articles/wisdom%20-%20baqarah%20FM3.htm

[4] THE QURAN STANDS ALONE AS SOLE RELIGIOUS GUIDANCE
http://quransmessage.com/articles/quran%20sole%20guidance%20FM3.htm

[5] TIME-BOUND SUNNA
http://quransmessage.com/articles/timebound%20sunna%20FM3.htm

[6] DO THE BEST YOU CAN WITH SINCERITY
http://quransmessage.com/articles/best%20you%20can%20FM3.htm
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline Tausif Ahmed

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Re: Clueless about Islam without history
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2020, 05:02:03 PM »
First of all thank you very much for a very detailed answer.

The points you mentioned, I fully agree with them even before I posted the question.
I did mention before that I do not mean small or irrelevant details.
My question was in no way a support for following hadith collections, Quran is clear on that.

Your POINT 3 is what I also had in mind but I asked..

Quote
Now one reply I can think of to this could be that Quran is sole source of religion and history(to a limited extent, keeping in accordance with Quran) can be read & explained.... but then that would negate the sufficiency of Quran

Well I guess if we take the hadiths etc to be historical sources rather than religious source then that would not negate the sufficiency of Quran?

Yes I am aware of converts doubting Islam after reading hadiths.

Thanks a lot again.

We raise in degrees whom We will, but over every possessor of knowledge is one [more] knowing. [12:76]
"Being crazily in Love with God is a great honor for Believer" ~ Adnan Oktar (Harun Yahya)

Offline Wakas

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Re: Clueless about Islam without history
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2020, 07:53:03 PM »
Re: example 1
Let's say his name was Jim instead. Can you tell us how this would change the guidance?

Re: example 2
e.g. "it is the truth" is singular.
If we read Quran as a whole is there any clear indication in it that we should follow other books also? No.