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Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2012, 03:56:35 AM »
Salaam Wakas and all,

Read your article, you raise good questions that I am not qualified to answer.  I agree with you that those who are not located in Arabia should not need a compass to determine the direction.  Since I can never determine my location, I always take refuge in God's ayah 2:115 and hope He accepts what I'm saying is a reflection of my heart.

 shatra almasjidi alharami  What does shatra mean?  Does it mean a piece of  or a major component of something?

Peace Hope,

'Shatr' is a well known Arabic word which in this context means direction or in the direction of something. I have briefly discussed the term in my post above.

I hope that helps, God willing.

My perspectives on the Qibla change are below:

THE QIBLA CHANGE
http://quransmessage.com/articles/qibla%20FM3.htm

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

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2012, 05:12:20 AM »
Brother Wakas,

Peace to you.

I have noted your recent posts on this forum which also link to various other sites. May I respectfully and kindly ask you to remain vigilant of 2(f) and 2(j) of the forum policy.

For the benefit of other readers on this forum, as you and I very well know, we have discussed matters in detail on various topics. For anyone who is interested to see the outcome, a simple search can yield the appropriate threads. (Please search with keyword "wakas"). Our discussions on other platforms have also been captured on this forum for the benefit of readers. (please search with keyword "waqas")

Our discussions have often been involved as you very well know and my difference with your methodology and approach has often been respectfully expressed. 

Therefore with respect, I personally will not be able to subject your work to any scrutiny as not only do I respectfully feel there will be limited mileage in doing so as I fundamentally disagree with your approach in certain areas which of course we have already discussed at times, but also due to my very limited time given my ever increasing workload and commitments.

So regretfully, given our differences in approach and my limited time, may I respectfully decline any further comments to your perspectives.  I trust you will respect my prerogative.

I know some questions have already been asked of you and I trust that you all continue to engage in fruitful discussions.

I will try to spend time as much time as I can afford with any questions that are asked of me personally, God willing.

Peace to you and / all.

With utmost respect,
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline HOPE

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #17 on: October 01, 2012, 05:45:39 AM »
Salaam br. Joseph,

Thank you for the link you provided- though I had read it previously it must have never registered without the context of current discussion.  Per 3:95, the Prophet was asked to follow the millata ibraheema haneefa, so his uneasiness facing Jerusalem is very logical.

2:126 and 14:35 mention land of safety meaning land free of idolatry, dedicated to the One worthy of worship?
"Hope is like a bird that senses the dawn and carefully starts to sing while it is still dark"

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #18 on: October 01, 2012, 10:37:11 AM »
Dear Hope,

Peace to you.

I have a quick question before I part with a detailed response for yours. Are you familiar with my humble perspective of the holy sanctuaries and the reinstitution of Abrahamic rites at the Sacred Mosque in the article below?

PROPHET ABRAHAM'S (pbuh) ORIGINAL SANCTUARY - AT MAKKAH (MECCA) OR BAKKAH (BACA)?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/makkah%20bakkah%20FM3.htm

If not, it may provide a backdrop of my perspective with the Qibla change (especially section -8-).

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

Offline Duster

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #19 on: October 02, 2012, 12:55:54 AM »
salaam/peace/shalom


The alternative to the above linked approach is an arbitrary one, i.e. you think a word means X here, but it can mean Y there, Z there etc - you have absolutely no way of determining if you are selecting meanings based on whim/desire or sound reason/evidence, and are not using a method that is systematic/robust/falsifiable.

That is why we need to understand the Arabic language first and realize that one word in Arabic can have different meanings in different usages and contexts.

Such a method to me is unacceptable, and not the precision/logic par excellence I have experienced with Quran. Let us assume the author of Quran is God, is God not a master of relaying guidance to us in a way that is precise, verifiable, logical, coherent etc? Yes/No.

It is probably because you don't understand Arabic as a spoken language. The Quran basically spoke to the Arabic people with words that were used by them. So knowledge of the language is a first. The Quran don't teach you the language. This for me - highlights the basic flaw in your Qur'anic approach brother.



Offline HOPE

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #20 on: October 02, 2012, 06:02:11 AM »
Peace,

Thank you for pointing me to your extensive study on Mecca and Baka.

Reinstitution becomes a test of faith in the new religion.
"Hope is like a bird that senses the dawn and carefully starts to sing while it is still dark"

Offline Wakas

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #21 on: October 03, 2012, 03:32:03 AM »
salaam dunster,

You seem to miss the point I am making and have made.

I have no problem whatsoever in that an Arabic word can have a different meaning in another occurrence etc. What I am saying is that there should be a reason for it, whether it be logic, idiom etc. IF a person has no reason other than "my view of word X does not fit there, thus it can mean Y" then such a method makes it impossible to determine the role of whim/desire in that person's choice.

Do you agree/disagree? If you disagree, please tell us how we can guard against whim/desire in such a method? This question is also open to anyone.

Offline Wakas

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #22 on: October 03, 2012, 03:40:46 AM »
Brother Joseph,
w/salaam,

Thanks for letting me know. Alas, we are all students with limited time.


Those who listen to what is being said, then follow the best of it.
These are the ones God has guided, and these are the ones who possess intelligence.
[Al Quran, 39:18]

Offline Wakas

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #23 on: October 03, 2012, 03:48:02 AM »
salaam saba,

I hope you have read my articles. In part 3 I discuss the meaning of "qiblah" in more detail but I can give you my findings in brief. In order of likelihood:

1) focal-point - focus/centre of interest or activity
2) direction - general aim or purpose; a general way in which someone/something is developing
3) point-of-approach - a way in which to approaching something
4) counteraction - to oppose and mitigate the effects of by contrary action

Offline Passerby

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #24 on: October 03, 2012, 04:43:06 AM »
Dear Passerby / all

Salamun Alaikum

In my humble opinion, implicit verses of the Quran are best interpreted in the light of explicit verses. I find those that interpret the Quran in reverse fashion, i.e. by ignoring explicit verses at the expense of pursuing implicit verses (3:7) cause interpretive tension which results in considerable confusion.

In my humble opinion, verses 2:144-45 makes it absolutely clear that the Quran recognised that different directions for prayer (qibla) would co-exist without compromising the need for a direction (shatra).

"...they would not follow your direction of devotion / prayer (Arabic: Qiblah); nor are you going to follow their Qiblah; nor indeed will they follow each other's Qiblah..." (2:145).
 
So piety is clearly not about direction but sincere devotion. Verse 2:177 simply confirms that aspect and there is no warrant for the restrictive interpretation that this statement negates a need for a qiblah.

Furthermore, some raise the possible presence of ‘intra’ differences with the Arabic phrase “'wa ma ba'duhum bitabi'in qiblata ba'din' in verse 2:145 which seems to suggest that between the People of the Book there were different Qiblahs.

Whether there were differences between Jews and Jews or Christians and Christians ('intra' differences), the Quranic text does not elucidate. However, this also cannot be ruled out.

I have discussed this aspect in a related post.

http://quransmessage.com/forum/index.php?topic=92.0

Another contention raised against the traditional understanding of ‘qiblah’ is with verse 10:87 and where the term ‘qiblatan’ is used in conjunction with the houses in Egypt during Prophet Moses’s mission.  The contention usually rests on the faulty premise that expects God to instruct the original house of Prophet Abraham to be used as a direction of prayer and not houses in Egypt. Also it is contended that houses in Egypt could not have been used as places of worship as the verse implies when the word 'qiblatan' is used to describe them.  Hence the traditional understanding of the term 'qiblah' is rejected.

There are two main problems with this contention:

  • An apparent unwarranted disregard is made of the term ‘qiblah’ which not only carries the nuance of a direction of worship but more importantly, a place of worship. The term ‘shatr’ (2:144) would have sufficed if the only intended meaning was ‘direction’. Clearly with the usage of both ‘shatr’ and ‘qiblah’ in the same verse (2:144), the term 'qiblah' carries a wider meaning which is beyond mere ‘direction’ and which verse 10:87 elucidates as also a place of worship. This is often not appreciated.
  • There is no warrant for the expectation of a particular designated ‘qiblah’. It is clear from the Quran that different qiblah's existed as directions for prayer or places for prayer. There is also no conclusive warrant for the assertion that the original house that Prophet Abraham built with his son was the same Ka'aba in Makkah [1]. So if different places of worship can co-exist, Makkah being one of others, there is no warrant to assume that a particular 'qiblah' was assigned for the whole of mankind for eternity. God does what He wills especially given the specific requirements of a people.

Therefore, verse 2:144 makes it clear that the sacred mosque was to be taken as not only the new direction of prayer but also the place of devotion for the new believing community. I have also argued the reinstitution of Abrahamic rites at the sacred mosque in section 8 of article [1] below.

I hope that helps God willing.

Regards,
Joseph.

Related Article:

[1] PROPHET ABRAHAM'S (pbuh) ORIGINAL SANCTUARY - AT MAKKAH (MECCA) OR BAKKAH (BACA)?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/makkah%20bakkah%20FM3.htm

Salaam Joseph,

I agree wholeheartedly.  I don't believe that God would turn away devout, sincere worship simply because one is not facing the exact direction of something.   In my opinion, we limit God with our thinking and interpretations.  Who are we to say that He will not accept a prayer for such and such reason, even if it has been clarified to us?  How often do we see "And God is Most Merciful, Compassionate" in the Qur'an?


Offline Saba

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #25 on: October 03, 2012, 05:28:36 PM »
salaam saba,

I hope you have read my articles. In part 3 I discuss the meaning of "qiblah" in more detail but I can give you my findings in brief. In order of likelihood:

1) focal-point - focus/centre of interest or activity
2) direction - general aim or purpose; a general way in which someone/something is developing
3) point-of-approach - a way in which to approaching something
4) counteraction - to oppose and mitigate the effects of by contrary action

Salam br. Wakas - I note that you remove any mention of a relationship with prayer or the act of devotion ...prayer.

Why can't qiblah mean a focal-point - focus/ centre of prayer ...like the traditional explanation? From what I have read of your notes so far, it seems to me you just don't want to associate either qiblah / sujood / masjid with prayer or an act of devotion to God?

Can I ask without intending to be disrespectful, do you have a problem with prayer or devotion to God or any of these terms having relationships with prayer?  :-\  Saba

Offline Duster

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #26 on: October 03, 2012, 07:51:42 PM »
What I am saying is that there should be a reason for it, whether it be logic, idiom etc.

peace bro wakas

I don't think that's right. When we write or speak in a certain language we don't ask the logic / reason behind why a word is used the way it is in different situations. Those that speak the language just know how those meanings are used in different situations.

For example in English, 'charge' has many meanings. I would know that I can use it as follows:

An electrical charge
Charge like a bull
A payment charge
Take charge of a situation
Being charged with a crime

However, what you are suggesting is similar to someone who doesn't know English and to come along and question the logic behind why 'charge' has been used in different ways and then question the logic. If you don't know the language, you ain't gonna have a clue. And using just dictionaries ain't going to be much benefit either.

That is why knowledge of the language is important. If you don't know the language thoroughly ...properly enough, then breaking up the words to see which one 'slots best' is only going to be based on personal desire / whims etc of the person who doesn't know the language.

This is where I really don't agree with your method bro. The risk here is that people start making up new meanings to words. Sorry but I sense something really ain't right here.


Offline HOPE

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #27 on: October 03, 2012, 10:57:32 PM »
peace Duster,

Thank you, very well said.  Tendency of assigning a single meaning to key words in Quran study-groups has been going on for over 10 years that I'm aware of. It was argued that if meanings change in different contexts, it would be too difficult for those who do not speak the language; majority does not know Arabic.

I remember one individual claiming to fast every July  since it was the hottest month.  July was his Ramadan.

My generation was awakened by Rashad Khalifa.  It was so painful for me when I realized the 19 phenomena was miscalculated.  I felt so betrayed. Yet bless his soul, his views were instrumental for me to get into the religion.  Before I did not even know the existence of "hadith"  I thought everything I knew about the religion was from the Quran.  Brother Joseph was talking about the innocence of the children.  My thinking was like a child but I was not a child.

So, in a way I understand where they are coming from; they don't want to be duped again. The pendulum needs to stay hanging down instead of oscillating from one extreme to another.


Genie was out of the bag
"Hope is like a bird that senses the dawn and carefully starts to sing while it is still dark"

Offline Wakas

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #28 on: October 05, 2012, 12:10:18 AM »
salaam saba,

Quote
Can I ask without intending to be disrespectful, do you have a problem with prayer or devotion to God...

No. For example "duaa" clearly means petition/call/pray (often to God) in Quran.

Quote
...or any of these terms having relationships with prayer?

I only have a problem if there is no evidence for such.


Perhaps you should ask yourself if you have a problem with those terms meaning other than is traditionally understood.



Offline Saba

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Re: Why should we face towards the Kaaba(mecca) while praying ?
« Reply #29 on: October 05, 2012, 12:51:11 AM »
Perhaps you should ask yourself if you have a problem with those terms meaning other than is traditionally understood.

Salaam Wakas, I think it is for you to provide evidence that the traditional meaning of an Arabic word is wrong. That a word as has been traditionally understood by the Arabs is just is plain wrong or the Quran didn't intend it that way. As many people have already said, the Quran doesn't intend to define words. So without meaning to sound disrespectful, I find your evidence severely lacking. Each to their own I suppose. Saba