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Offline islamist

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Re: Muhammad Asad, Legends?
« Reply #15 on: January 27, 2013, 02:30:34 PM »
Salaam Hope!

I found the reference Peaceful is talking about;

(21:81 M.Asad Translation) "And among the rebellious forces [which We made subservient to him]76 there were some that dived for him [into the sea] and performed other works besides: but it was We who kept watch over them.77"

76 My rendering, in this particular context, of shayatan (lit., "satans") as "rebellious forces" is based on the tropical use of the term shaytan in the sense of anything "rebellious", "inordinately proud" or "insolent" (cf. Lane IV, 1552) - in this case, possibly a reference to subdued and enslaved enemies or, more probably, to "rebellious" forces of nature which Solomon was able to tame and utilize; however, see also next note.

77 In this as well as in several other passages relating to Solomon, the Qur'an alludes to the many poetic legends which were associated with his name since early antiquity and had become part and parcel of Judaeo-Christian and Arabian lore long before the advent of Islam. Although it is undoubtedly possible to interpret such passages in a "rationalistic" manner, I do not think that this is really necessary. Because they were so deeply ingrained in the imagination of the people to whom the Qur'an addressed itself in the first instance, these legendary accounts of Solomon's wisdom and magic powers had acquired a cultural reality of their own and were, therefore, eminently suited to serve as a medium for the parabolic exposition of certain ethical truths with which this book is concerned: and so, without denying or confirming their mythical character, the Qur'an uses them as a foil for the idea that God is the ultimate source of all human power and glory, and that all achievements of human ingenuity, even though they may sometimes border on the miraculous, are but an expression of His transcendental creativity.

It is really unfair to link this statement with 8:31

Offline Peaceful

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Re: Muhammad Asad, Legends?
« Reply #16 on: January 27, 2013, 10:14:35 PM »
Hope, this is a Verse (8:31), I can't believe you would say that. :'(
http://corpus.quran.com/translation.jsp?chapter=8&verse=31

I never said Asad questioned the Divine Origin. I gave you 2 explicit references:
p. 578, fn. 17
p. 498, fn. 77

Islamist, the link I'm making is rational and perfectly valid. Again:

the Qur'an alludes to the many poetic legends which were associated with his name since early antiquity and had become part and parcel of Judaeo-Christian and Arabian lore long before the advent of Islam. Although it is undoubtedly possible to interpret such passages in a "rationalistic" manner, I do not think that this is really necessary. Because they were so deeply ingrained in the imagination of the people to whom the Qur'an addressed itself in the first instance, these legendary accounts of Solomon's wisdom and magic powers had acquired a cultural reality of their own and were, therefore, eminently suited to serve as a medium for the parabolic exposition of certain ethical truths with which this book is concerned: and so, without denying or confirming their mythical character, the Qur'an uses them as a foil ...

Muslims and Christians always debated on the historicity of their respective Holy Books. Asad (Allah be pleased with him) essentially removes any chance of debate and throws in the 'accuracy' towel for the Muslims. The implications are magnanimous. I hope you all understand the point I'm conveying.

Salam.

Offline HOPE

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Re: Muhammad Asad, Legends?
« Reply #17 on: January 27, 2013, 11:12:56 PM »
Salaam Peaceful,

Sorry if I have misunderstood you.  The references ( page numbers) you gave me does not match the 2003 edition I have.  Asad says they are allegorical.  Are you saying, thus, there is no need to argue about the literal interpretations?

"Hope is like a bird that senses the dawn and carefully starts to sing while it is still dark"

Offline Peaceful

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Re: Muhammad Asad, Legends?
« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2013, 05:58:03 AM »
My simple question is do you believe the Quran contains MYTHS???

This is what Asad believed, whether u like it or not. I bolded everything he said to prove my point.

If you do not, then you realize why I said this is an act of Kufr (sorry if I seem harsh, but the truth is always bitter).

As per your Question, I don't care whether other people take verses literally or figuratively, but saying the Quran contains Myths appears to me to be utter blasphemy.

Offline HOPE

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Re: Muhammad Asad, Legends?
« Reply #19 on: January 28, 2013, 07:42:59 AM »
Salaam Peaceful,

Quote
The meeting of Solomon and the Queen of Sheba is narrated in Targum Sheni as follows: "Solomon, when merry from wine, used to assemble before him all the kings, his vassals, and at the same time ordered all the other living creatures of the world to dance before them. One day, the king, observing that the mountain-cock or hoopoe was absent, ordered that the bird be summoned forthwith. When it arrived it declared that it had for three months been flying hither and thither seeking to discover some country not yet subjected to Solomon, and had at length found a land in the East, exceedingly rich in gold, silver, and plants, whose capital was called "Kitor" and whose ruler was a woman, known as 'the Queen of Saba [Sheba].' The bird suggested that it should fly to the queen and bring her to Solomon. The king approved this proposal; and Solomon, accordingly, caused a letter to be tied to the hoopoe's wing, which the bird delivered to the queen toward the evening as she was going out to make her devotions to the sun. Having read the letter, which was couched in somewhat severe terms, she immediately convoked a council of her ministers. Then she freighted several vessels with all kinds of treasures, and selected 6,000 boys and girls, all of the same age, stature, and dress, and sent them with a letter to Solomon, acknowledging her submission to him and promising to appear before him within three years from that date. . . . On being informed of her arrival, Solomon sent his chief minister, Benaiah, to meet her, and then seated himself in a glass pavillon. The queen, thinking that the king was sitting in water, lifted her dress, which caused Solomon to smile."

://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/13842-solomon

The story narrated in the Quran is not found in the Bible but is contained in the Targum.  There has been myths about Solomon that has crept into the Bible,too like, "For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods" 1Kings 11:4

Quran refutes this charge in 2:102

I agree with Islamist that it is unfair to Asad because he is not saying Quran contains myths.  He is saying Quran without  affirming or denying their mythical character,  using them to impart ethical truths. It is not the same thing.

Peace
"Hope is like a bird that senses the dawn and carefully starts to sing while it is still dark"

Offline islamist

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Re: Muhammad Asad, Legends?
« Reply #20 on: January 28, 2013, 11:07:18 AM »
Islamist, the link I'm making is rational and perfectly valid.

I hope you will agree M. Asad did not imply any such thing as Solomon was a mythical/ imaginary character.  He was pointing out “poetic legends which were associated with his name” and “legendary accounts of Solomon's wisdom and magic powers” and how these were a cultural reality for the people and how Quran uses such or similar accounts to show that God is the ultimate source of all human power and glory and to teach people some ethical truths.  This is what I understood from his note.  You seem to go beyond what he has stated.  His was providing a note for 21:81 "There were some that dived for him [into the sea] and performed other works besides: but it was We who kept watch over them"