Our Relationship With the Qur'an


What is the relationship of the Quran with me, you, and us? Generally, we think the Quran is a religious book of a particular religion or a particular religious community. We, therefore, do not pay any attention to the Quran. Is it true the Quran is a religious book? And we, who belong to other religions or ideologies, do not have to do anything with it. Some of us even consider it as source of terror and violence. Hence, an American Pastor of Florida, Terry Jones declared on Thursday, September 12, 2013, that he would burn the Quran. Some other wants to put a ban on it. Petitions have been submitted in few courts of Law here and there.

We are mentioned in the Quran 

We all have read hundreds of books. We do not find a single book that makes claim that it deals with us or does discuss about us. The Quran is the only unique book in which we find we have been mentioned. The Quran declares beyond doubt that Allah has mentioned us in the Quran: “We have bestowed upon you a Book that mentions you. Do you not understand? [21: 10]”. At some other place people were reminded that they are mentioned in the Quran. For example, the Quran says: “Nay, the fact is that We have brought to them their own remembrance; and yet it is from their own remembrance that they are turning away [23: 71]”. This Book in which we have been mentioned informs us that this will, if we benefit from its teachings, lead us to the safest path. “There has now come to you a Light from Allah, and a Clear Book through which Allah shows to all who seek to please Him the paths leading to safety. He brings them out, by His leave, from darkness to Light and directs them on to the Straight Way [5: 15-16]”. It is a kind of Book which makes claim that it will take us out of darkness of crimes, corruption, conflicts, chaos, crisis, poverty, illiteracy, production of weapons of mass destruction, sense of insecurity etc. In spite of a clear message of the Quran, we consider it either a religious Book or the Book of other religion.

What is the truth and reality about the Quran?

In this case, don’t we need to think about it? Definitely, at a time when we are surrounded by thousands of problems we need to know what is the truth and reality of the Quran. How can it take us out of darkness?  The Quran is available with us in the form of a Book; so can we ask this question to the Quran itself? At the very outset the Quran declares that it is not the product of human mind rather it is revealed to the Prophet Muhammad in Makkah during seventh century. The Quran declares: “The revelation of the Quran is from Allah, the Most Mighty, the Most Wise [39:1]”. The Quran has come to us as a Book from Allah [2:89]. With more emphasis we are informed: “This is the Book of Allah, there is no doubt in it [2: 2]”. We are reminded again and again in the Quran that it is not from any human being but from Allah Who is All-Wise, All-Aware, All-Knowledgeable, All-Powerful. See some of the declarations of the Quran such as: “Surely this is a revelation from the Lord of the Universe [26: 192]”. “As for you [O Muhammad], you are receiving the Quran from the Most Wise, the All-Knowing [27: 6]”. “This Book, beyond all doubt, was revealed by the Lord –Allah- of the Universe [32: 2]”. “This is the Quran We have revealed...We have revealed clear instructions so that you may take heed [24: 1]”. It is also made clear that the Quran was revealed to the heart of the Prophet Muhammad, it confirms the Books revealed before it, and is guidance and good tiding to the people...[2: 97]. The Quran is not even from a very high talented human being like, philosopher or thinker or a Prophet, but rather it is from Allah for our guidance. “O Muhammad, you are receiving the Quran from the Most Wise, the All-Knowing - Allah [27: 6]”. “This is a revelation from the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate, a Book whose verses have been well-expounded...[41: 2-3]”. “This is nothing but a revelation that is conveyed to him [the Prophet], something that a very Powerful One has imparted to him, One endowed with immense wisdom [53: 4-6]”.

The Quran is taught by Allah - the All-Knowing; the Most Wise; the Self-Sufficient; the All-Powerful

It is also made clear that: “Allah has taught the Quran to us [55: 2]” so that we can know what is the truth and reality of life and the world. Furthermore, we are informed by Allah through the Quran that “Allah, the Ever-Living, the Self-Subsisting, Who sustains the entire order of the Universe...has revealed the Quran to [for the benefit of us through the Prophet Muhammad] you, setting forth the Truth...[2: 2-3]”. It means it reveals what is the truth of life and shows what is the reality of life? The Quran is the clearest book on the issue of the truth and reality of life and the world. “These are the verses of the Clear Book [26: 2]”. “These are the verses of the Wise Book, guidance and mercy for the doers of good [31: 2-3]”. It is also claimed in the Quran that it “is a revelation from the Most Mighty, the Most Compassionate [36: 5]”. “This Book – the Quran – is a revelation from Allah, the All-Mighty, the All-Knowing; the Forgiver of sins, the Acceptor of repentance, the Stern in retribution, the Bountiful [40: 2-3]”. The question here is: should we ignore the Quran on the basis of hear and say or do we need to study it?

 

Why the revelation of the Quran?

Nothing is confusing and unclear in the Quran. Every single point in the Quran is made clear. See, for example, some of the statements such as the following: “Allah revealed to you [O Prophet Muhammad and also people of the world] the Book and Wisdom, and He taught you what you knew not. Great indeed has been Allah’s favor upon you [4: 113]”. “Verily We have sent down for you revelations which clearly expound true guidance, and examples of those who passed away before you, and an admonition for those who fear Allah [24: 34]”. It is not that Allah revealed the book to the Prophet Muhammad for the first time. Throughout history books were revealed to Prophets for the guidance of mankind. It is asserted in the Quran: “[O Muhammad]. We have revealed to you as We revealed to Noah and the Prophets after him, and We revealed to Abraham, Ismael, Isaac, Jacob and the offspring of Jacob, and Jesus and Job, and Jonah, and Aaron and Solomon, and We gave to David Psalms. We revealed to the Messengers We have already told you of, and to the Messengers We have not told you of; and to Moses Allah spoke directly. These Messengers were sent as bearers of glad tidings and as warners so that after sending the Messengers people may have no plea against Allah [4: 164-166]”. So, it is not true that the Quran presents before us a universal message and shows us the truth and reality of our life but not a religious one.

“Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise. [Whether people believe or not] Allah bears witness that whatever He has revealed to you [O Prophet Muhammad], He has revealed with His knowledge, and the angels bear witness to it too, though the witness of Allah is sufficient. [4: 166-167]”. “There has now come to you [O Prophet] a Light from Allah, and a Clear Book through which Allah shows to all who seek to please Him the paths leading to safety [5: 15-16]”. “Surely clear evidence has come to you [O Prophet] from your Lord, which is both guidance and a mercy [6: 158]”. In what way the Quran is mercy for us?

Furthermore, we are reminded that: “...this Quran is such that it could not be composed by any unless it is revealed from Allah. It is a confirmation of the revelation made before it and a detailed exposition of the Book. Beyond doubt, it is from the Lord of the entire Universe. Do they say that the Messenger has himself composed the Quran? Say: ‘In that case bring forth just one surah like it and call on all whom you can, except Allah, to help you, if you are truthful.’ In fact, they arbitrarily rejected as false whatever they failed to comprehend and whose final sequel was not apparent to them. Likewise, had their predecessors rejected the Truth, declaring it falsehood? Do observe, then, what was the end of the wrong-doers.  Of those some will believe, and others will not. Your Lord fully knows the mischief-makers [10: 37: 40]”.

The Quran is the result of the Knowledge of Allah. “Surely We have brought them a Book which We expounded with knowledge; a guidance and a mercy to those who believe [7: 52]”. “These are the verses of the Book [Quran] over-flowing with wisdom [10: 1]”. “These are the verses of a Book [Quran] that clearly expounds the Truth [12: 1]”. “These are the verses of the Divine Book [Quran]. Whatever has been revealed to you from your Lord is the Truth, and yet most [of your] people do not – understand - believe [13: 1]”.

The purpose of the revelation of the Quran is made clear in the Quran itself. “[O Prophet Muhammad], We revealed to you the Quran with the Truth for all mankind. So, he who follows the Right Way does so to his own benefit, and he who goes astray, shall hurt only himself by straying [39: 41]”. “This is a Book which We have revealed to you [O Prophet] that you may bring forth mankind from every kind of darkness into light, and direct them, with the leave of their Lord, to the Way of the Mighty, the Innately Praiseworthy, [to the Way of] Allah to Whom belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth [14: 1-2]”. “This is a proclamation for all mankind that they may be warned by it, and that they may know that their god is none but Allah – One True God – and that men of understanding may take heeds [14: 52]”. “Most blessed is He Who sent down this Criterion –the Quran- on His servant, to be a warner to all mankind; He to Whom belongs the kingdom of the heavens and the earth [25: 1-2]”. “We sent down the Book [Quran] to you which makes everything clear, and serves as guidance and mercy and glad tidings to those who have submitted to Allah [16: 89]”. We all need the Quran because “The Quran is full of exhortation [38: 1]”. “...this is nothing but an Exhortation [to goodness] for everyone in the world [68: 52]”.

We are made un-tiredly to understand that we are in need of the guidance of the Quran for cultural and civilizational development. Hence, it is said repeatedly: “Verily this Quran guides to the Way that is the Straight-most. To those who believe in it, and do righteous works, it gives the good news that a great reward awaits them, and warns those who do not believe in the Hereafter that We have prepared for them a grievous chastisement [17: 9-10]”. “We have expounded [the Truth] in diverse ways in this Quran that they might take to heart but all this only aggravates their aversion [17: 41]”. “We have revealed the Quran in parts that you may recite it to people slowly and with deliberation; and, for that reason, We have revealed it gradually to suit particular occasions [17: 106]”. “[O Prophet], We revealed to you the Book [Quran] with the Truth for all mankind. So, he who follows the Right Way does so to his own benefit, and he who goes astray, shall hurt only himself by straying. You are not accountable on their behalf [39: 41]”.

The challenge of the Quran to humanity

The Quran forcefully argues that it is from Allah. It is sent for the purpose of guidance of mankind. If, we deny this or do not take this seriously and neglect and show doubt about it, Allah poses a challenge to us.  “If you are in any doubt whether it is We Who have revealed this Book to Our servant, then produce just a surah like it, and call all your supporters and seek in it the support of all others save Allah. Accomplish this if you are truthful. [2: 23] But if you fail to do this –and you will most certainly fail – then have fear of the Fire. Whose fuel is men and stones and which have been prepared for those who deny the Truth [2:24]”.

“Do they say that the Messenger has himself composed the Quran? Say: ‘In that case bring forth just one surah like it and call on all whom you can, except Allah, to help you if you are truthful’[10: 38]”.

“Do they say: ‘He has invented this Book himself?’ Say: ‘If that is so, bring ten surahs the like of it of your composition, and call upon all you can other than Allah to your help. Do so if you are truthful.’ Then if do not respond to your call for help then feel assured that this Book was revealed with the knowledge of Allah, and that there is no true god but Allah. Will you, then surrender to this truth? [11: 13-14]”.

“Do they say: ‘He [The Prophet] has himself fabricated the Quran?’ No the truth is that they are altogether averse to believing. If they are truthful in this, then let them produce a discourse of similar splendor [52: 33-34]”.

“Say: “Surely, if mankind and jinn were to get together to produce the like of this Quran, they will never be able to produce the like of it, howsoever, they might help one another [17: 88]”. “Do they not ponder about the Quran?  Had it been from any other than Allah, they would surely have found in it much inconsistency [4: 82]”. The truth and reality of life and the world are clearly spell out in the Quran so that we can live with truth and reality. “We surely sent down to you clear verses that elucidate the Truth, [verses] which only the transgressors reject as false [2: 99]”. “Say: ‘Surely Allah’s guidance, is the true guidance’ [2: 120]”. “During the month of Ramadan the Quran was sent down as guidance to the people with Clear Signs of the true guidance and as the Criterion between right and wrong [2: 185]”. “Thus does Allah make His Signs clear to mankind that they may stay away from evil [2: 187]”. “He has revealed this Book to you, setting forth the Truth and confirming the earlier Books, and He revealed the Torah and the Gospel before that for the guidance of mankind; and He has also revealed the Criterion to distinguish the Truth from falsehood [3: 3-4]”. Finally, we are reminded that we must realize the importance of truth and reality of life and the world. “O people! Now that the Messenger has come to you bearing the Truth from your Lord, believe in him; it will be good for you. If you reject, know well that to Allah belongs all that is in the heavens and the earth. Allah is All-Knowing, All-Wise [4: 170]”.

The Quran reveals truth and shows reality

We are informed beyond doubt the truth and reality of life. “We have explained things for people in this Quran in diverse ways to make them understand the Message, yet most people obstinately persist in unbelief [17: 89]”. “We have sent down the Quran with the Truth, and it is with the Truth that it has descended. And We have not sent you but to proclaim good news and to warn. We have revealed the Quran in parts that you may recite it to people slowly and with deliberation; and [for that reason] We have revealed it gradually to suit particular occasions [17: 105-107]”. Why the Quran was revealed gradually? Answer to this question is provided. “Those who disbelieve say; ‘Why was the Quran not revealed to him all at once?’ It was revealed thus that We may fully impress it on your mind; and for the same end, We have revealed it gradually, according to a scheme, in fragments. This was also done so that whenever they put any strange question to you, We sent its right answer and explained the matter in the best manner [25: 32-33]”.

“...it is the Truth from your Lord so that you may warn a people to whom no warner came before you; perhaps they will be guided to the Right Way [32: 3]”. “By the Wise Quran, you are truly among the Messengers, on a Straight Way, and this Quran is a revelation from the Most Mighty, the Most Compassionate so that you may warn a people whose ancestors were not warned before wherefore they are heedless [36: 2-6]”. “The revelation of this Book [Quran] is from Allah, the most Mighty, the most Wise. [O Prophet], it is We Who have revealed this Book [Quran] to you with Truth. So, serve only Allah [39: 1-2]”. “[O Prophet], the Book [Quran] We have revealed to you is the Truth, confirming the Books that came before it. Verily Allah is well aware of His servants and sees everything [35: 31]”.

The best teaching

The Quran gives us the best teachings. “Allah has revealed the best teaching, a self-consistent Book which repeats its contents in manifold...That is Allah’s Guidance [39: 23]”. “We have indeed propounded for mankind all kinds of parables in this Quran that they may take heed. It is ...free of all crookedness that they may guard against their evil end [39: 27-28]”.  “This Book [the Quran] is a revelation from Allah, the All-Mighty, the All-Knowing; the Forgiver of sins, the Accepter of repentance, the Stern in retribution, the Bountiful. There is no god but He. To Him are all destined to return [40: 2-4]”. “This [the Quran] is a revelation from the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate, a Book [Quran] whose verses have been well-expounded [41: 24]”. “Allah it is Who sent down this Book with the Truth and the Balance [42: 17]”. “This Book [the Quran] is a revelation from the Most Mighty, The Most Wise - Allah [45: 2]”. The revelation of this Book is from Allah, the Most Mighty, the Most Wise. [46: 2]

“Tell them, [O Prophet], “Did you consider [what would be your end] if this Quran were indeed from Allah and yet you rejected it? [46: 10]”. “It [the Quran] has been revealed by the Lord of the Universe. And if he [i.e., the Prophet] had forged this Discourse and thereafter ascribed it to Us, We would surely have seized him by the right hand, and then severed his life vein; and not one of you would have been able to withhold Us from doing so [69: 43-47]”.

“These are the ones – unbelievers - who rejected the Good Counsel - the verses of the Quran - when it - the Quran - came to them, although it is certainly a Mighty Book....The Quran] is a revelation that has been sent down from the Most Wise, the Immensely Praiseworthy. Tell them, [O Prophet]: ‘Did you ever consider: if this Quran is indeed from Allah and you still deny it, who can be in greater error than he who goes far in fiercely opposing it?’ Soon shall We show them Our Signs on the horizons and in their own beings until it becomes clear to them that it is the Truth. Is it not enough that your Lord is a witness over everything? Lo, they are in doubt concerning their meeting with their Lord. Surely, He fully encompasses everything [41: 52-54]” that is, nothing is beyond Allah’s power, nor is there anything beyond the range of His knowledge. “The Quran is the Blessed Book that We have revealed to you, [O Muhammad], that people with understanding may reflect over its verses and those with understanding derive a lesson from it [38: 27-29]”. How much do we think about the Quran and also in the light of the Quran? Do we take trouble to think what are the main themes of the Quran and how they are related to us for our development? Do we plan development of our-self, our people, and our country on the basis of the Quran or without seeking guidance from the Quran? Which act of our-self is rational and which one is irrational. Do we need to think about these Questions?

These are some of the questions which require our reflection.


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