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Offline Nura

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some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« on: June 13, 2013, 08:46:54 PM »
salam brother Joseph,

I would like to begin by apologizing because of repeating two of my questions that I asked before but did not get  answers yet.  I am asking these questions again because I need the answers to them so that I can decide what I should do from a Quran's perspective.

       After reading your articles and your posts, I have learnt that the Quran provides a law and an open way for us and the people of the book.

You also said that the Quran asks the people of the book to consider it and accept it as truth. From your reply to my question, I understood that we are to believe that aspects of truth is present in the Bible but we are not to use it for extracting and formulating religious law.

You also said that the Bible was revealed as a source of law for the children of Israel.

1. But is the Bible (only) supposed to remain the source of law for the children of Israel till the day of reckoning even after the Quran is revealed?

2. The Quran is revealed as a message for all of Alaameen, doesn't that include people of the book?

3. if not, then how is the Quran a guidance for all of Alameen?

4. If a person( christian or jew) from the people of the book accepts the Quran as truth, can he/she then still follow only the laws present in the Bible? or in this case should he/she follow both the laws in the Quran and the Bible ( Bible + Quran)?

5. is it enough for them to just believe in the veracity of the message of the Quran and follow only the Bible just like we are asked to recognize truth in the Bible but follow the laws in the Quran?

        I read your very informative article on riba. Your approach is different than traditionalista, you rightly consider the nature of paper money and say that if the amount of interest charged is equal to the time dependant increase in the certain amount of money then its ok. But calculating such a rate of interest that would yield the time dependent increased amount of money is not possible. As an economics student i can tell this because we are taught that due to the presence of black markets, impossibility of accruing perfect information regarding monetary transactions and demand and supply of money in an economy it is impossible to calculate such an interest rate. So non islamic banks cant charge that rate. So they charge a rate that they fix basing on assumptions and speculative calculations.

The rate of interest these institutions charge yield an amount of money that reflects the time dependent increase in money but the amount is not exactly equal to it. The interest amount of money can be slightly more or less than the time dependent increased amount.

6. Do you think then working in such institutions is haram and so is keeping money in their savings accounts? can I work in  a bank and have a savings account in traditional banks?

         In my country, after the death of a person, people gather on the third day( called milad) and the 40 th day (called challisa) to recite the quran, some prayers, surah yaseen 40 times etc for the peace of the soul of the dead person.

7. is this practice sanctioned by the quran?

8. how can the recitation of these help the dead person? are doing these things at all quranic or just a traditional practice not sanctioned by the quran?

9.and also women are not allowed to accompany the body to the burial site. this is thought to be forbidden?

10.does the quran forbid women from attending janaza prayers and going to the burial site?

11.also people (men and women) in my country visit the grave and read surahs for the peace of the dead person's soul. how quranic is this practice?

thank you so much for all the trouble.
Not all those who wander are lost - J.R.R. Tolkien

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2013, 07:43:19 PM »
Wa alaikum assalam Nura,

Please see my responses to your questions in red

You also said that the Quran asks the people of the book to consider it and accept it as truth. From your reply to my question, I understood that we are to believe that aspects of truth is present in the Bible but we are not to use it for extracting and formulating religious law. You also said that the Bible was revealed as a source of law for the children of Israel.

1. But is the Bible (only) supposed to remain the source of law for the children of Israel till the day of reckoning even after the Quran is revealed?


At no place does the Quran assert ‘as a condition of faith’ that the Children of Israel / People of the Book should abandon their laws that have been revealed to them. [1]

Rather, the Quran asserts:

"Say: "O People of the Book! you have no ground to stand upon unless you firmly stand by (Arabic: Tuqimu) the Torah, the Gospel, and all the revelation that has come to you from your Lord." (5:68)

"But why do they come to you for decision, when they have (their own) Torah before them?  therein is the (plain) command of God; yet even after that, they would turn away. For they are not People of Faith." (5.43)

The Jews are being told to judge from what has been revealed to them (Torah) and if they don't, they are 'Kaffirs' (Disbelievers)
 
"It was We who revealed the Torah (to Moses): therein (Arabic: Fi-ha) was guidance and light. By its standard have been judged the Jews, by the prophets who bowed (as in Islam) to God's will, by the rabbis and the scholars (Arabic: Ahbaru) : for to them was entrusted the protection of God's book, and they were witnesses to it: therefore do not fear mankind, but fear Me, and sell not my verses (Arabic: Ayati) for a miserable price. If any fails to judge by (the light of) what God has revealed, they are Unbelievers (Arabic: Kaffiruna)" (5:44)

The Quran also acknowledges that different laws were revealed for different communities which they must submit to in truth.

"...To each among you have We prescribed a law (Arabic: Shir-atan) and an open way (Arabic: waminhajan). If God had so willed, He would have made you a single people, but (His plan is) to test you in what He has given you: so strive as in a race in all virtues. The goal of you all is to God; it is He that will show you the truth of the matters in which ye dispute”  - 5.48 (part)

Not only is their food permissible to be eaten, the Quran also sanctions marriage with the People of the Book.


HOWEVER (IMPORTANT)

We must be clear what the Quran defines as 'righteous' People of the Book. This is arguably not a reference to those of the People of the Book that have transgressed boundaries into idolatry by assigning partners with God and commit unrighteous deeds. This is a reference to religiously 'righteous' people of the Book.

Please see article [2] below which will elaborate this point, God willing.

Like many Muslims today, there are many from the People of the Book that arguably do not follow their scriptures in earnest but have rather taken other sources for religious guidance.

If the Quran is followed along with its laws then that is done out of choice not because the Quran explicitly states the People of the Book to abandon their scriptures.


2. The Quran is revealed as a message for all of Alaameen, doesn't that include people of the book?

Please note the meaning of 'Alameen' from a Quran's perspective which is dependant on context. Please see related article [3] below.

There are those from the People of the Book that accept the 'truth' of the Quran as a revelation from God. If they followed the guidance of the Quran, they would be referred back to their own scriptures with discernment. The Quran would also provide them a tool to challenge those notions that have crept into their beliefs and practices which have no warrant.  Following the Quran does not necessarily equate with abandoning the laws of say the Torah.

It is only the believers that are required to follows the laws of the Quran alone.


3. if not, then how is the Quran a guidance for all of Alameen?

Please see response above.


4. If a person( christian or jew) from the people of the book accepts the Quran as truth, can he/she then still follow only the laws present in the Bible? or in this case should he/she follow both the laws in the Quran and the Bible ( Bible + Quran)?

Please see my response to your question 2 above. The Quran presents a tool for 'discernment' and for the people of the Book it commands them to what is right and forbids them from what is wrong in their beliefs and practices. Please see the verse below:

007.157
"Those who follow the messenger (Arabic: Tabiuna RasulAllah), the gentile prophet (Arabic: Nabiya Ummiya), whom they find mentioned in their own (scriptures) in the Torah and the Gospel;- for he commands them to what is right and forbids from what is wrong (Arabic: munkar); he allows them as lawful what is good (and pure) and prohibits them from what is bad (and impure) (Arabic: Khabaitha); He relieves from them their burdens and from the fetters which were upon them. So it is those who believe in him, honour him, help him, and follow the light which is sent down with him,- it is they who will prosper."


5. is it enough for them to just believe in the veracity of the message of the Quran and follow only the Bible just like we are asked to recognize truth in the Bible but follow the laws in the Quran?

There are aspects of the Bible that the Quran confirms. It also challenges theology which has become 'read into' the Bible without warrant. If they followed the Quran as Divine guidance, they would be able to find a tool to discern their beliefs and follow their own scriptures more closely as they were intended to be followed.


I read your very informative article on riba. Your approach is different than traditionalista, you rightly consider the nature of paper money and say that if the amount of interest charged is equal to the time dependant increase in the certain amount of money then its ok.

This is only on the premise that one is entitled to recover their principle amount.  This does not ipso facto make the concept of charging 'riba' correct. This respectfully was the intent of the article.

Please find below a relevant quote from the article which dealt specifically with savings held in bank accounts.

"However, the creditor (who deposits their savings) is entitled to receive their principle amount back. As already mentioned, in today's economy, currency seldom holds the same value over a period of time. Therefore, it can be argued that any interest payment that covers the rate of inflation is permissible as this allows for the creditors principle amount to be returned." [4]


But calculating such a rate of interest that would yield the time dependent increased amount of money is not possible. As an economics student i can tell this because we are taught that due to the presence of black markets, impossibility of accruing perfect information regarding monetary transactions and demand and supply of money in an economy it is impossible to calculate such an interest rate. So non islamic banks cant charge that rate. So they charge a rate that they fix  basing on assumptions and speculative calculations.

As I have respectfully shared, my article does not sanction 'interest / riba' but in the context of your question, only argues for the return of the principle amount.


6. Do you think then working in such institutions is haram and so is keeping money in their savings accounts? can I work in  a bank and have a savings account in traditional banks?

As I have argued in another post [5] if the primary purpose of an institution is to deal / trade in matters forbidden such as 'riba', then facilitating that trade in any manner is arguably not in the spirit of Islam. With regards savings accounts and as I have already reiterated, I have argued the return of one's capital amount taking into account monetary inflation.


In my country, after the death of a person, people gather on the third day( called milad) and the 40 th day (called challisa) to recite the quran, some prayers, surah yaseen 40 times etc for the peace of the soul of the dead person.

7. is this practice sanctioned by the quran?


The Quran provides a tool, a criterion to judge. There is no warrant to sanction these practices 'in the name of religion'. If they are followed or one participates in them, they are done simply as a cultural practice. Rather than blind rituals, believers would be better advised to make use of these gatherings to discuss the Quranic narratives, how to implement them into our lives and to understand what they are reciting rather than blind recitation. Offering prayers for the dead however, is a practice generally recognised by the Quran. [6]


8. how can the recitation of these help the dead person? are doing these things at all quranic or just a traditional practice not sanctioned by the quran?

Please see response above. These are merely traditional practices. A recitation of the Quran can only help the living not the dead. The dead have moved on and the accounts of their deeds are closed and are with their Lord for judgement.

9.and also women are not allowed to accompany the body to the burial site. this is thought to be forbidden?

There is no Quranic warrant to forbid this in the name of religion. However, it may be deemed culturally acceptable in certain communities to discourage women for many reasons including the heightened state of emotion of such an event and to address logistics etc. However, this is not a Quranic matter. It is simply a cultural one.


10.does the quran forbid women from attending janaza prayers and going to the burial site?

Please see the response above.


11.also people (men and women) in my country visit the grave and read surahs for the peace of the dead person's soul. how quranic is this practice?

This is not a 'Quranic matter'. Arguably, people should visit graves more importantly with a view so that they can think of their own transient journey on earth. If they read prayers or the Quran with meaning and intent, then they can only extract guidance from it. However, if the intent is to benefit the dead then such a thought has no Quranic warrant.

The Quran does not intend to abandon traditions. However, many traditions are actioned in the 'name of religion' which has no warrant. As I shared on a post:

"Assess the traditions that have reached you in whatever culture you live in. Do not simply dismiss them but sharpen the ability to discern. Those traditions of your culture that fall within the spirit and guidance of the Quran, be free to embrace it. Those that do not, respectfully leave it aside or curtail your involvement in it." [7]


I hope that helps, God willing.

Regards,
Joseph.


REFERENCES:


[1] PEOPLE OF THE BOOK (JEWS & CHRISTIANS)
http://quransmessage.com/articles/people%20of%20the%20book%20FM3.htm
[2] MARRIAGE WITH THE PEOPLE OF THE BOOK
http://quransmessage.com/articles/marriage%20with%20people%20of%20the%20book%20FM3.htm
[3] UNDERSTANDING THE QURANIC TERM 'ALAMEEN'
http://quransmessage.com/articles/alameen%20FM3.htm
[4] RIBA
http://quransmessage.com/articles/riba%20FM3.htm
[5] QM Forum Post: http://quransmessage.com/forum/index.php?topic=369.msg1111#msg1111
[6] PRAYING 'FOR' THE DEAD IS DIFFERENT FROM PRAYING 'THROUGH' THE DEAD
http://quransmessage.com/articles/praying%20for%20and%20praying%20through%20FM3.htm
[7] MY HUMBLE ADVICE
https://www.facebook.com/joseph.a.islam/posts/213495468787588

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

Offline QM Moderators Team

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2013, 07:58:30 PM »
Dear Nura

Your post has been deleted not only because you have appeared to simply dismiss the response that has been shared with you, you have also repeated many of your questions unnecessarily to which responses were given. It seems as you haven't even bothered to read the responses with any sincere intent. This is not acceptable especially when a member has spent time and effort in responding to your queries.

Can you please remain conscious of 2(C) of the forum policy in the future.

Thanks

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2013, 08:56:31 PM »
Dear Nura,

As-salam alaykum

Notwithstanding the comments made by the moderators which I trust you will respect, I have acquired the transcript of your post. Please see my responses to them. However, please can I once again ask you to take heed of the moderators request.

My responses are shared to your comments in red

salam brother,

taking the risk of sounding repititive, I would like to ask,

1. is the practice of 'conversion' of jews and christians' to 'new muslims' and their subsequent abandoning of the OT and NT not right?

People of the OT and NT (People of the Book) are asked to accept the truth of the Quran’s message. Even at the time of the Prophet, there were People of the Book that believed in the truth of the Quran.

If they did, they would be able to discern from the faulty beliefs and practices that have infiltrated their religion.

I mean the so-called scholars of islam encourage thousands of people from other religions including the people of the book to abandon the laws of their scripture and embrace the laws of the Quran.


We are talking about People of the Book (i.e. the Jews and Christians), not people from other religions such as Hindu's Buddhists, Sikhs etc. Please do not conflate the issues.

it is said in the Quran that a messenger is sent to all nations, so maybe today's hindus, budhists, shikhs etc also were people who received guidance from Allah but just like how idolatory in the form of Jesus being the son of God crept into or is being read into the Bible, maybe currently similar idolatrous concepts are being read into Hindu, Budhist or shikh scriptures.

You are respectfully confusing people of other religions, with those of the Abrahamic faith such as the People of the Book which the Quran specifically addresses.

2. if it is not right for jews and christians to abondon the laws of the Bible then is it right for people of other faiths to abondon their scriptures?

Again, you are mixing two different issues. With a risk of consistently reiterating myself, the Quran asks for the People to the Book to accept the veracity of the Quran. However it does not ask them to abandon their laws. I have already cited relevant verses for this.

People from other religions are invited to accept the ways of Prophet Abraham and follow the truth of the Quran and its laws and guidance. The people of 'other religions' are not the people of the Book that the Quran addresses.

3. what do you have to say about the current conversion practice that goes around?

There is nothing wrong with sharing the message of the Quran with all humanity. This should be encouraged.

4. if it is ok for the jews and christians to just say that they believe that the Quran is a revelation from god and only follow the Bible then why shouldnt hindus or others do the same. i.e believe in the veracity of the Quran but follow the laws of  the vedas that are not idolatrous or do not contradict the verses of the glorious Quran?

Once again, because the religions you are mentioning are not the ‘People of the Book’ that the Quran refers to. They are neither 'Muslims' or 'Believers' in the Quranic sense.

5. is the ' conversion to islam' practice unjustified from the quranic perspective?

No, it is not unjustified.

you said, if a jew or a christian believes the Quran as revelation, and reads it, he/she would be said to go back to the Bible and follow the laws therin. i.e according to you they are supposed to follow the laws in the Bible and we (the beleivers) are to follow only the Quran.

6.but can't a jew or christian become a 'believer' and follow the quran only?


As I have already stated.

"If the Quran is followed along with its laws then that is done out of choice not because the Quran explicitly states the People of the Book to abandon their scriptures."

Yes, they can follow the Quran alone if they wish. However, they are not required to as an article of belief. Please also remember that the concept and guidance of the scriptures of the Abrahamic religion is in essence from the same monotheistic root. Comparing the Old Testament and the Quran with the Vedas is not an appropriate comparison.

7.what should a Hindu, Budhist, or people from other faiths do? Should they not follow the Quran only?

Yes, that is what the Quran expects them to do. It is an invitation to the truth. However, no one should be 'forced'

8. who then are exactly believers if jews and cristians can continue to follow their laws? werent there jews and christians during the prophets minstry who abondoned the Bible and excepted the Quran? as in jews and cristians who beacame followers of the Quran alone i.e became a believer?

If the People of the Book accept the Quran as the truth, then they are believers. Even people of the Book who believed in the truth of the Quran were referred to as ‘believers’. However this does not mean they abandoned their laws.

005.083
"And when they listen to the revelation received by the Messenger, you will see their eyes overflowing with tears, for they recognise the truth: they pray: "Our Lord! we have believed (Arabic: amanna); write us down among the witnesses (Arabic: Shahadin)"
 
003.199
"And there are, certainly, among the People of the Book, those who believe in God, in the revelation to you, and in the revelation to them, bowing in humility to God: They will not sell the Signs of God for a miserable gain! For them is a reward with their Lord, and God is swift in account"
 
People who believed in the previous scriptures were already Muslims as can be seen in the following verse:
 
028:52-53
"Those to whom We sent the Book before this, they believe in it. And when it is recited to them, they say "We believe in it, surely it is the truth from our Lord, surely before this (min-qablihi) we were muslims (Arabic: Muslimina)"

Please also see the following article which may be of assistance, God willing.

MUSLIM AND MU'MIN (BELIEVER) - THE DIFFERENCE
http://quransmessage.com/articles/muslim%20mumin%20FM3.htm
 
the practice of conversion is something that is really confusing me please shed some light onto it from a qurans perspective.

Dear Nura, I have shared my responses. Please can I respectfully urge you to consider them carefully.

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

Offline Nura

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2013, 10:41:59 PM »
salam brother,

I actually have read your previous post carefully but the issues were not clear to me , so i repeated my questions. in fact i have began my reply by saying so that I repeated them. I told u that I was becoming confused and you rightly said that the issue of conversion is different for people of other faith. I apologize again. I just wanted to be clear on this issue.

But I would like the moderators to know respectfully  that I never dismiss anyone's reply especially if it is to a query I made and the person has taken time out to answer them. please do not say things like, it so seems that you haven't taken the time to read the answers, when you do not know whether i read them or not and that is offensive.

and also I repeated two of my questions because I needed answers to them and initially I waited for a response for around three weeks. I have said sorry for repeating my questions and I am apologizing now again.

thank you.
Not all those who wander are lost - J.R.R. Tolkien

Offline QM Moderators Team

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2013, 10:46:44 PM »
Sorry Nura,

We meant no disrespect. However we do try to run a tight ship here. As you can imagine, there are all sorts that may attempt to disrupt the decorum of this forum so we try to keep tight control where we can.

Please don't mind, you are most welcome here. Apologies for any offence taken.

Thanks.

Offline Nura

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2013, 10:49:11 PM »
dear moderators,

yes I understand. I had no intend of creating dispute or disrupt the decorum of the forum though :)..

thank you
Not all those who wander are lost - J.R.R. Tolkien

Offline Adil Husain

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2013, 09:00:56 PM »
May peace be with you ,
Dear Joseph Islam Sir ,

Quote
We are talking about People of the Book (i.e. the Jews and Christians), not people from other religions such as Hindu's Buddhists, Sikhs etc

May i please  know of any verse which hints that Ahl-e-Kitab (people of the book) used in the Quran are Christians and Jews only and not Hindu , Sikhs , etc.

Currently i think that Just like Bible and Torah , there were Books teaching monotheism in Sikhism and Hinduism too.

Sikhism teach Monotheism , it is Sikhs of today who do not study their scripture and  exaggerate the status of the founder of Sikhism.

Similarly , The is no known founder of Hinduism but the Earliest Known Scriptures of Hinduism (i.e Vedas) teach strict Monotheism.
It were the  scriptures which came later and were made part of Hinduism which led to Idol-worshiping.
there was a movement within Hinduism known as ARYA SAMAJ whose aim was to urge people to come back to the teaching of original scriptures and give up idol-worshiping.
Since I do not know much about the teachings of Vedas apart from that of monotheism i can only guess that it may be from God or is work of a Human-being who pondered on creation plan of God.

[Monotheist translation]

4:41 How is it then when We bring forth from every nation a witness, and bring you as a witness over these?

10:47 And for every nation is a messenger; so when their messenger comes, the matter is decreed between them with justice, and they are not wronged.

16:36 And We have sent a messenger to every nation:......

Regards ,
Adil.

'I must strive for reformation of myself and the world'

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2013, 10:49:00 PM »
Salaam Adil,

Joseph is unavailable right now. However re: your question:


May i please  know of any verse which hints that Ahl-e-Kitab (people of the book) used in the Quran are Christians and Jews only and not Hindu , Sikhs , etc.


Please see 3:65

3.65
O People of the Scripture! Why will ye argue about Abraham, when the Torah and the Gospel were not revealed till after him ?


Why would anyone else argue about the Torah and Gospel other than Jews and Christians? Why would Sikhs for example argue about Abraham?


Again in another verse:

5.68
Say O People of the Scripture! Ye have naught (of guidance) till ye observe the Torah and the Gospel and that which was revealed unto you from your Lord.

Why would Hindu's, Sikh's or Buddhists or anyone else observe the Torah and Gospel apart from the Jews and Christians respectively?



Offline Adil Husain

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2013, 11:00:07 PM »
Thank you Truthseeker !
'I must strive for reformation of myself and the world'

Offline Truth Seeker

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2013, 11:19:17 PM »
No problem Adil. I think Joseph made use of a similar argument to a similar type of question so I paraphrased it. But I am sure there are other examples too.

Offline Hamzeh

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2013, 11:26:46 AM »
Salam Truth seeker

Just pondering about your comment and the ayat that you quoted to Adil.


3.65
O People of the Scripture! Why will ye argue about Abraham, when the Torah and the Gospel were not revealed till after him ?

To me this sounds like Its referring to the people of the scripture of course to a people who were after Abraham who had the Torah and the Gospel. So to me this is referring to the jews and the christians.


Now for Adil I think what you are trying to say is maybe that these other religions also started out as the same religion of islam but maybe changed and started to be organized like every other Abrahamic religion. Like you see in Islam Christianity and Judism there is so many sects and organizations. I heard that Hinduism was one of the oldest organized religions. But that was just coming from the speeches of others and i really didn't verify that.

But from the quran we know that:

026.105
“The people of Noah rejected the messengers”
 
 
025:037
“And the people of Noah, when they rejected the messengers, We drowned them and We made them as a Sign for mankind and We have prepared for (all) wrong-doers a grievous Penalty”
 
 
026.123
“The Ad (people) rejected the messengers”
 
026.141
“The Thamud (people) rejected the messengers”
 
026.160
“The people of Lut rejected the messengers”
 
026.176
"The Companions of the Wood rejected the messengers"

where all these people and companions all arabs or jews or christians? or
just maybe that hindus or Buddhists or sikhs or other nations that have there religions derived from one of these people who were sent as messengers.


And as you stated Adil


4:41 How is it then when We bring forth from every nation a witness, and bring you as a witness over these?

10:47 And for every nation is a messenger; so when their messenger comes, the matter is decreed between them with justice, and they are not wronged.

16:36 And We have sent a messenger to every nation:......


from the above verses the witness is got to be a messenger

and the day that its talking about is the day of judgment

And those people quoted above in those ayat are going to have witnesses on the day of judgement which are there messengers.

The witness that is going to be brought forth on the day of judgment, is going to be a messenger who is a witness over his people.

So in my opinion it might not be a messenger that would come after Muhammad(swt). As he is the final witness to witness if the people lived by the quran and used it as a way of life and believed in it. Because he is a witness for the whole world, (I know some will argue that he came to only the people of quraaysh) but to me that doesn't make sense because its encouraged that all people believe in the Quran and to judge by it and hold it to be true till the end of times.

So that means that maybe many nations have been brought the truth before and they rejected. And for everyone to seek the truth is not to blindly follow there forefathers religion but to always criticize it and to look for faults to see if its a holy and perfect religion that remained constant from the beginning of time till the end. and to trace its roots and to see what it says and see a pattern from one messenger to the other and till inshallah one day Allah(swt) will guide he/she.

And sorry to anyone for being interrupted by my comment. Im new to register on the website. Im not sure if im allowed to reply just on anyone. because some forums i notice i cant reply

Salam

Offline Hamzeh

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2013, 12:12:35 PM »
Salam

one more thing i forgot to mention was

40:78
And indeed We already sent Messengers even before you. Among them are the ones whom We related to you, and (some) We have not related to you; and in no way (could) any Messenger come up with a sign except by the permission of Allah. Then when the Command of Allah comes, (their end) is decreed with the Truth, and there over the wrong-doers (Literally: doers of void "deeds") will lose.

04:164
And Messengers We have mentioned to you before, and Messengers We have not mentioned to you, - and to Musa (Moses) Allah spoke directly.

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: some questions regarding beliefs and practices
« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2013, 03:10:37 AM »
Dear All,

As-salam alaykum

Please construe my comments above in this thread with regards the address 'People of the Book' as a specific response which governs what the title means from a Quran's perspective. Nothing more.

Of course, I am not arguing nor denying that other nations also received messengers of their own or that the true teachings of the messengers of those communities were distorted by subsequent followers. This may well be true. After all, the Quran informs us of many God's agents that were sent before prophet Muhammad's ministry to respective nations and many to come till the Day of Judgement.

010:047
"And for every nation (walikulli) there is a Messenger (rasul). And when their Messenger comes (on the Day of Judgment) it will be judged between them fairly, and they will not be wronged"

However, it is of worthy note that all true agents of God took a specific covenant with their communities not to deny future messengers that may come into their midst. However, as has arguably been the case many times throughout history, this covenant was often forgotten or wilfully flouted by subsequent generations.

003.081
"And when God took a covenant (through) the prophets: Certainly what I have given you of the Book and wisdom, then a messenger (Arabic: rasulun) comes to you confirming that which is with you, you must believe in him, and you must help (Arabic: walatansurunnahu) him. He said: Do you affirm and accept My Covenant in this (matter)? They said: We do affirm. He said: Then bear witness, and I (too) am of the bearers of witness with you" [1]

Arguably, Prophet Muhammad also took such a covenant by virtue of verse 7:35 with his own people.

So indeed, many ancient religions of today could have had very sound religious roots which were subsequently distorted with denial of future messengers to correct them.

However to sanction ancient religions as 'true' today despite their beliefs and practices having being tainted over time is unsupportable from a Quran's perspective. A religion is not 'true' if it departs from God's guidance no matter what title is assigned to it. This is also true of its adherents. Even the practices of many Muslims today are unsupportable from a Quran's perspective despite them possessing a Divine revelation free from corruption. They may call themselves 'Muslims' but that does not necessarily make them 'believers' if they reject clear truth once it has reached them.

Being a good person is one thing, for even many atheists are good people. After all, it is within our 'nature' (fitrah) to know what is right or wrong for us. It is the manner in which we have been created.

091:007-10
"And a soul and Him Who perfected / proportioned it (sawwaha). And inspired it (with conscience of) what is wrong for it and (what is) right for it. He is indeed successful who causes it to grow (purifies it), and he is indeed a failure who corrupts it (buries it)"

To become 'evil' or 'of evil conduct' is actually a wilful blight committed against the nature of one's soul which is otherwise created 'balanced' and 'well proportioned / perfected' (sawwaha). It is a product of evil volition.

Every soul is independently answerable and only God can judge them given their individual circumstances and faculties. We cannot make that judgment.

However, whilst remaining righteous in our dealings with humanity, the onus also remains on all of us to consistently search for the truth no matter what path we have taken to the best of our abilities.

017.036
"And do not follow that of which you have no knowledge. Indeed! the hearing and the sight and the heart - of each of these you will be questioned"

The Quran underscores the maxim that good deeds must be coupled with belief in God and the Last Day i.e. correct beliefs (e.g. 2:62).
 
Therefore, I would be inclined to concur with brother Hamzeh's underlying sentiment in the following excerpt.

"So that means that maybe many nations have been brought the truth before and they rejected. And for everyone to seek the truth is not to blindly follow there forefathers religion but to always criticize it and to look for faults to see if its a holy and perfect religion that remained constant from the beginning of time till the end. and to trace its roots and to see what it says and see a pattern from one messenger to the other and till inshallah one day Allah(swt) will guide he/she."

However, I would respectfully disagree with the statement:

"So in my opinion it might not be a messenger that would come after Muhammad(swt)".

I find such a thought is completely negated by verse 7:35 in explicit terms and by the implication of verse 44:3-5 and the general arguments I have humbly shared in the article [2] below.

007:035
"O ye Children of Adam! whenever there come to you messengers from among you, rehearsing My verses (Arabic: ayati) to you, those who are righteous and mend (their lives), on them shall be no fear nor shall they grieve"

The term 'Bani Adam' has only been used in the Quran to address all humanity irrespective of time.
 
So indeed, we must all continue to strive to search for the truth and only God knows best what is within everyone's heart and who has endeavoured most given their individual circumstances and faculties.

016.125
"Invite (all) to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious: for thy Lord knows best, who have strayed from His Path, and who receive guidance"

Only God knows best.

Regards,
Joseph


REFERENCES

[1] IS VERSE 3:81 A REFERENCE TO ANY PARTICULAR MESSENGER?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/3-81%20FM3.htm
[2] END OF PROPHETHOOD - CONTINUATION OF MESSENGERS?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/end%20of%20prophethood%20FM3.htm
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell