Posts Tagged ‘Muhammad’

Arabic Quran for non-Arabic Speakers?

Posted: June 24, 2016 by millatibraheem in Arabic, Bid'ah, History, Rebuttals
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Much discussion has transpired regarding the language of the Quran and the Muslims claim for it to be a universal guide, which leads mankind from the day one is cultured til the day he dies.  Many have professed discontent and are bewildered with the followers of the recital, who advocate the exclusiveness of the Quran being the last testament for humanity.

After all, the Quran is in Arabic, revealed to an Arabic speaker, who ministered to a people in Arabia. These are irrefutable facts which no believer and disbeliever would deny.

إِنّا أَنزَلناهُ قُرآنًا عَرَبِيًّا لَعَلَّكُم تَعقِلونَ

Indeed We have sent it down an Arabic Qurʾaan so that you may understand

(Surah Yusuf 12:2)

The polytheists had accused Muhammad Rasulullaah of learning the Quran from a foreign man who was a servant of the Quraish.  The Quran then refutes their claim,

وَلَقَد نَعلَمُ أَنَّهُم يَقولونَ إِنَّما يُعَلِّمُهُ بَشَرٌ ۗ لِسانُ الَّذي يُلحِدونَ إِلَيهِ أَعجَمِيٌّ وَهٰذا لِسانٌ عَرَبِيٌّ مُبينٌ

And We certainly know that they say, ‘It is only a human that teaches him.’ The tongue/language of the one they refer to is foreign/non-Arabic/‘Ajamiyon, while this is a clear Arabic tongue/language.

(Surah an-Nahl 16:103)

The Arabic Quran reinforces itself repeatedly as being clear, detailed, and comprehensive in Arabic,

كِتابٌ فُصِّلَت آياتُهُ قُرآنًا عَرَبِيًّا لِقَومٍ يَعلَمونَ

A Book, its verses detailed, an Arabic Qur’aan, for people who know

(Surah Fussilat 41:3)

 In consideration of these verses, and others, questions arise as to how can it be for all of mankind when majority of the world does not know Arabic?

How does a non-Arabic speaker, whose mother tongue is foreign, suppose to comprehend and understand a Book that is not in their language and not revealed to a non-Arab audience?

Even more, the Quranic Arabic is from the seventh century that most present-day Arabs do not even speak.

They say, “why should I be held accountable for what I don’t understand?”

Translations of the Quran do not do justice to the Arabic language and are merely an interpretation, trapped into the translators bias beliefs.

In Muhammad Rasulullaah’s time, there were two major superpowers that battled each other; the Persians and the Romans.  These empires had extensive land conquests and included people from all walks of life under their rule.  It would have been reasonable for the Quran to be revealed in Latin (Roman) or Persian (Farsi) as they were the dominant languages that time and not Arabic.  The Arabs were seen as a worthless minority and their language mostly remaining in Arabia.

So, why was the Quran sent in Arabic?

The question may be answered in the following verse, which was revealed after the polytheists accused the Messenger of fabrication, or making it up himself and not receiving it from Allah,

أَم يَقولونَ افتَراهُ ۚ بَل هُوَ الحَقُّ مِن رَبِّكَ لِتُنذِرَ قَومًا ما أَتاهُم مِن نَذيرٍ مِن قَبلِكَ لَعَلَّهُم يَهتَدونَ

Or they say: ‘He has fabricated it’ Nay, it is the truth from your Lord, so that you may warn a people to whom no warner has come before you, in order that they may be guided

(Surah al-Sajdah 32:3)

The people did not receive a warner before Muhammad Rasulullaah, and it was their time for guidance.  They spoke Arabic and it would be unusual to send them a Messenger, or warner, who spoke a foreign language they did not understand.

وَما أَرسَلنا مِن رَسولٍ إِلّا بِلِسانِ قَومِهِ لِيُبَيِّنَ لَهُم ۖ فَيُضِلُّ اللَّهُ مَن يَشاءُ وَيَهدي مَن يَشاءُ ۚ وَهُوَ العَزيزُ الحَكيمُ

And We sent not a Messenger except with the language/tongue of his kinsfolk/people, in order that he might make (the Message) clear for them. Then Allah misleads whom He wills and guides whom He wills. And He is the All-Mighty, the All-Wise

(Surah Ibraaheem 14:4)

Muhammad Rasulullaah was sent to the Arabs speaking Arabic.  The Quran was sent in Arabic as a guidance for those people who understood the language and were able to follow it, since the Messenger they were given was well-known from among them.

End of Part One.