For those with Malice towards Islam... 

... A Guide to Understanding Qur'an   

 

    

If you wish to distill truth from falsehood, behave only like someone who wishes to increase his knowledge and to win greater recompense from God. Do not behave like someone who is content with what he has, who is looking for some fault to criticize or a curious detail to hawk around. This would be the behavior of vile men who never succeed in their studies of religion or search for the True path, wherever it may be.

If you come towards God with good intentions, you will always obtain the best results. Otherwise, stay at home and off the net, that would be less tiring for your body, more worthy of your moral conduct and more salutary for your religious life.

If you do come here for an insight into Quranic verses and Hadiths, under the conditions that we have indicated, take care to adopt one of these three attitudes and there cannot be a fourth: [First,] you may keep quiet in the silence of ignorance. Thus you will obtain the reward of your intention in attending the study-session, praise for your reserve, dignity in your behavior and the friendship of those you mix with. [Secondly,] if you do not behave like this, ask the questions which someone would ask who wished to learn. [Thirdly,] you can riposte as a scholar would, that is to say that you can reply to the arguments advanced in a way that refutes them clearly. Guard against the questions that a prejudiced man would ask or the ripostes of a show-off who is bent on being right without knowing anything about the matter. These two attitudes are bad: they witness to absence of piety, a great tendency to verbiage, a weakness of spirit and considerable vanity. Let us commend the matter to God who is our best support.

But those who reject the Light of Truth are obstinate. Why should they persist in Evil ways when the Clear evidence has come before them? The straight Religion is Simple: to adore with a pure heart, The God of Truth, to draw near to Him in sincere prayer and to serve our fellow creatures in charity and love. To do anything else is to fall from Grace.

Below is the list of Most often and most widely used set of statements by those who wish to blur the Light of truth in Quran, by deliberately or ignorantly placing the verses out of context or omitting the verses that precede or exceed the ones they quote, in order to try to bring about a totally different meaning. I will attempt to list a few of them with full context, the translated verses and their emerging explanations:-

1. God of Islam asks Muslims to kill all non-Muslims wherever they find them. 

Verse: 9:5 But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the Pagans (Ar: Mushrikiin) wherever ye find them, an seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war); but if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practice regular charity, then open the way for them: for Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. Source: Yusuf Ali translation at IslamiCity

Explanation: This is Surah Al-Tawbah (The Repentence), the ONLY verse of Quran which does not start with the  usual opening words of 'Bismillah', because of it's nature of warning to those who break their treaties and mock those who are Righteous. In the context of it's revelation, ( This verse is amongst the last ones to be revealed), The Pagans and enemies of Islam during the time of the Prophet, frequently made treaties of mutual alliance with the Muslims, the Muslims scrupulously observed their part, but the Pagans violated their part again and again when it suited them. After some years, it became imperative to denounce such treaties altogether. This was done in due form with four months notice and a chance was given to those who faithfully observed their pledges, to continue their alliance. "If one amongst the Pagans ask thee for asylum, grant it to him, so that he may hear the word of Allah. and then escort him to where he can be secure. That is because they are men without knowledge." Quran 9:06.

This verse 9:05 of Qur'an, is usually the most visible and boldly mentioned verse on all Anti Muslim/Islamic sites. The illusion it's meant to create is that, Muslims are commanded by their God (the Allah), to kill all unbelievers, especially, the Pagans (most Hindu anti-Islamic cites have translated this word 'pagan' to 'idolaters', in order to give a warning message to their readers that, " All you Hindus beware, better kill Muslims first before they come to kill you. It will only be an act of self defense and pre-emption". 

Every Muslim is thus meant to be seen as a 'perspective' murderer of his Hindu friend, neighbor, classmate, colleague etc., 

To talk of the context of this verse in the time of peace will equate to quoting an American Army general during the time of Vietnam guerilla warfare, "Kill any Vietnamese as soon as you see him."  Does this mean Americans are meant to kill Vietnamese for all times to come?

The good pleasure of God is with those who are sincere and make sacrifices in His cause but NOT with those who intend mischief, foment unbelief and disunity amongst men who are believers in One True God. For those (Muslims and even non Muslims) who believe that this commandment of Allah (swt) asking Muslims to kill all non-Muslims holds good even during the times when Muslims are at peace and not fighting any war whatsoever, then this verse should silence them all...

60: 8-9. Allah forbids you not, with regard to those who fight you not for (your) Faith nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for Allah loves those who are just. Allah only forbids you, with regard to those who fight you for (your) Faith, and drive you out of your homes, and support (others) in driving you out, from turning to them (for friendship and protection). It is such as turn to them (in these circumstances), that do wrong.

Also: We, at Guided Ones, constantly keep receiving several emails concerning these verses in the Holy Quran which apparently call for killings of non-Muslims. If our reply above is insufficient, an islam101 team member gave a detailed reply to two such emails. Click Here!


2. God of Islam considers all non-Muslims as worst of His creations.

Verse 98:6: Those who reject (Truth of One God), among the People of the Book and among the Polytheists, will be in Hell-Fire, to dwell therein. They are the worst of creatures.

Explanation: To be given the faculty of discrimination between Right and Wrong, and then to reject Truth and Right, is the worst folly that a creature endowed with WILL can commit. It must necessarily bring it's own punishment, whether the creature calls himself one of the children of Abraham or one of the redeemed of Christ, or whether he goes by the mere light of nature and reason as an idolater. Honor in the sight of God is not due to race or professions of faith, but to sincere and righteous conduct. [ Refer 49:13 O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise (each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things).]

In 4:147: "What can Allah gain by your punishment, if ye are grateful and ye believe? Nay, it is Allah that recognizes (all good), and knows all things." Allah(swt) here goes on a step further to tell us that there is no pleasure nor advantage to Allah in punishing His own creatures, over whom He watches with loving care. On the contrary He recognizes any good-however little- which he finds in any of us and delights to give us a reward beyond measure.


3. God of Islam recommends Muslims to kill their fellow believers if they leave the fold of Islam.

Verse 4:89-89:  They but wish that ye should reject Faith, as they do, and thus be on the same footing (as they): But take not friends from their ranks until they flee in the way of Allah (From what is forbidden). But if they turn renegades, seize them and slay them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or helpers from their ranks, Except those who join a group between whom and you there is a treaty (of peace), or those who approach you with hearts restraining them from fighting you as well as fighting their own people. If Allah had pleased, He could have given them power over you, and they would have fought you: Therefore if they withdraw from you but fight you not, and (instead) send you (Guarantees of) peace, then Allah Hath opened no way for you (to war against them).

Explanation: The context here is with the battle of Uhud which nearly caused a disaster to the Islamic cause and there was a great feeling among the Muslims of Madinah against the hypocrites who showed their backs in the battle field and deserted the community. It was exposed that a few people joined the Muslim community by false pretences only to come into the inner counsels with the motive of betrayal at the crucial hour. These people may rightly be treated as a traitor or deserter and be punished for their treason and desertion. Such people are worse than enemy as they claim to be one of of you in order to spy on you and have all the time been helping those who are against the noble cause of righteousness and work towards creating mischief in the community. In 4:146, it's outlined that even hypocrites can obtain forgiveness on four conditions: (1) Sincere Repentance, which purifies their mind. (2) amendment of their conduct, which purifies their outer life (3) steadfastness and devotion to Allah, which strengthens their faith and protects them from the assaults of evil and (4) sincerity in their religion, or their whole inner being, which brings them as full members into the goodly Fellowship of Faith.

* For more on dealing with Apostates in Islam, Please read this Article at Answering-Islam.com website.


4. God of Islam cautions Muslims against taking non-Muslims as their friends and confidantes. 

Verse 5:51 "O ye who believe! take not the Jews and the Christians for your friends and protectors: They are but friends and protectors to each other. And he amongst you that turns to them (for friendship) is of them. Verily Allah guides not a people unjust."

Verse 5:82 "Strongest among men in enmity to the believers will you find the Jews and Pagans; and nearest among them in love to the believers will you find those who say, "We are Christians": because amongst these are men devoted to learning and men who have renounced the world, and they are not arrogant."

Believers in the Unity of God should not look towards those that do not believe in HIM, for help and comfort over their own fellowmen. They are more likely to combine together against rather than helping us. This happened more than once in the lifetime of the Prophet and is often repeated again and again in the after ages, whenever Muslims became weak as a community and fought amongst themselves. Most of these men usually align whichever way the wheels of fortune turns. Muslim community should be self sufficient in all matters of life, spiritually, financially and militarily. An optimum Islamic creed would be a helper, protector and a giver rather than a taker. The erstwhile Spain which gave protection to Jews when they were hunted throughout Europe or Jerusalem under Sultan Salahuddin, which gave protection to Christians, is what Muslim nations should strive for. It's a pity that ground realities are different because most of the Muslims have ceased to walk on the path of Islam. The Muslims of Kuwait looked upon others as their protectors and their apathy is for all to see. The Muslims in Bosnia and kosova had no one to look upon and they got annihilated before NATO came in, too little too late. The Muslims of Palestine, have no friends in the world against Jews. It's all the weakness of Muslims who ceased to be self sufficient that they are looked upon as barbarians and terrorists instead of the best of the people in manners and ideology. This verse shouldn't be misunderstood as "Persecute all the Jews and the Christians, for as Muslims we cannot take them as friends." 

It's a miracle of verse 5:82, when we see that a majority of the present day overwhelming converts to Islam are from the community of the followers of Jesus (Peace be upon him).

The verse 5:81, should in no way be taken as depicting that in Muslim majority community, all others are to be seen as outcasts or boycotted, for it's an authentic saying of Prophet Muhammed (pbuh):

'Prophet Muhammad (may peace be upon him) said:" Archangel Gabriel impressed upon me (kind treatment) towards the neighbor (so much) that I thought as if he would confer upon him the (right) of inheritance". On another instance he commanded one of his followers: "Whenever you prepare a broth, add water to it, and have in your mind the members of the household of your neighbors and then give them out of this with courtesy. [Hadeeths Book 032, Number 6354: 6358] . 

It's worth mentioning here that the neighbor need not be a Muslim.


5. The Islamic God stirs enmity between Muslims and non-Muslims at will .

Verse 5:14: "From those, too, who call themselves Christians, We did take a covenant, but they forgot a good part of the message that was sent them: so we estranged them, with enmity and hatred between the one and the other, to the day of judgment. And soon will Allah show them what it is they have done."

The Christian Covenant may be taken to be the charge which Jesus gave to his disciples and which the disciples accepted to welcome Ahmed ( Qur'an 61:6 "And remember, Jesus, the son of Mary, said: "O Children of Israel! I am the apostle of Allah (sent) to you, confirming the Law (which came) before me, and giving Glad Tidings of an Messenger to come after me, whose name shall be Ahmad." But when he came to them with Clear Signs, they said, "this is evident sorcery!"). Glimpses of this are still to be found in the Gospel of John as and how, it still exists ( John 15:26, 16:07). It is some of these who call themselves "Christians", who reject this today. True Christians accepted it and will continue to accept it in all times to come. The hidden/manifested enmity between those who call themselves Christians and the Jews will continue till the Last Day but they may join together when the Truth of Islam needs to be subdued.

"O You People of the Book! (Jews and Christians) Why do you clothe Truth with falsehood, and conceal the Truth, while you have knowledge? Sura Al-Imran 3:71"


6. The Islamic God asks Muslims to abduct non-Muslim women in retaliation, if one of their women deserts their religion.

Verse 60:11 And if any of your wives deserts you to the Unbelievers, and ye have an accession (by the coming over of a woman from the other side), then pay to those whose wives have deserted the equivalent of what they had spent (on their dower). And fear Allah, in Whom ye believe.

This charge just doesn't add up with the verse but still I'll write an explanation for it. A very unlikely contingency is taken care of here, considering how much better position the women occupied in Islam than under Pagan custom, but all contingencies have to be provided for equitable legislation. If a woman went over to the Pagans, her dower ( Bridal money or 'Mahr' given by the Husband to his wife at the time of marriage) would be recoverable from the Pagans and payable to the deserted husband. If a woman came over from the pagans, her dower would be payable to the pagans. Assuming that the two dowers are equal, the one would be set off against the other as between the two communities. This was done in order to give no suspicion to the Pagans that they were badly treated as they lost the dower they had given on marriage before their wives embraced Islam, that dower was to be repaid to the pagan husbands. Thus helpless women refugees who converted to Islam but their husbands stuck onto pagan beliefs, were to be protected at the cost of Muslims. The conditions to test the genuine faith of these women who were converts to Islam and came to Medina under the guardianship of Muslims , is put under test in 60:12. "O Prophet! When believing women come to thee to take the oath of fealty to thee, that they will not associate in worship any other thing whatever with Allah, that they will not steal, that they will not commit adultery (or fornication), that they will not kill their children, that they will not utter slander, intentionally forging falsehood, and that they will not disobey thee in any just matter,- then do thou receive their fealty, and pray to Allah for the forgiveness (of their sins): for Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful."


7. Qur’an says that Allah has made the earth for you as a carpet. This gives an indication that the earth is flat. Does this not contradict established modern science?

Verse 71:20 "And Allah has made the earth for you as a carpet (spread out)." [Al-Qur’an 71:19] But the sentence in the above verse is not complete. It continues in the next verse, explaining the previous verse. It says: "That you may go about therein, in spacious roads."

Explanation: A similar message is repeated in 20:53: "He Who has made for you the earth like a carpet spread out; has enabled you to go about therein by roads (and channels)....". The surface of the earth i.e. earth’s crust is less than 30 miles in thickness and is very thin as compared to the radius of the earth which is about 3750 miles. The deeper layers of the earth are very hot, fluid and hostile to any form of life. The earth’s crust is a solidified shell on which we can live. The Qur’an rightly refers to it like a carpet spread out, so that we can travel along its roads and paths. Not a single verse of the Qur’an says that the earth is flat. The Qur’an only compares the earth’s crust with a carpet. Some people seem to think that carpet can only be put on an absolute flat surface. It is possible to spread a carpet on a large sphere such as the earth. It can easily be demonstrated by taking a huge model of the earth’s globe covering it with a carpet. Carpet is generally put on a surface, which is not very comfortable to walk on. The Qur’an describes the earth crust as a carpet, without which human beings would not be able to survive because of the hot, fluid and hostile environment beneath it. The Qur’an is thus not only logical, it is mentioning a scientific fact that was discovered by geologists centuries later. Similarly, the Qur’an says in several verses that the earth has been spread out. "And We have spread out the (spacious) earth: how excellently We do spread out!" [Al-Qur’an 51:48] Similarly the Qur’an also mentions in several other verses that the earth is an expanse: "Have We not made the earth as a wide expanse" "And the mountains as pegs?" [Al-Qur’an 78:6-7] None of these verses of the Qur’an contain even the slightest implication that the earth is flat. It only indicates that the earth is spacious and the reason for this spaciousness of the earth is mentioned. The Glorious Qur’an says: "O My servants who believe! truly. spacious is My Earth: therefore serve ye Me – (And Me alone)!" [Al-Qur’an 29:56] Therefore none can give the excuse, that he could not do good and was forced to do evil because of the surroundings and circumstances. The Qur’an mentions the actual shape of the earth in the following verse: "And we have made the earth egg shaped". [Al-Qur’an 79:30] The Arabic word Dahaha means egg shaped. It also means an expanse. Dahaha is derived from Duhiya which specifically refers to the egg of an ostrich which is geo-spherical in shape, exactly like the shape of the earth. Thus the Qur’an and modern established science are in perfect harmony.


8. Muslims believe in the theory of abrogation, i.e. they believe that certain earlier verses of the Qur’an were abrogated by verses revealed later. Does this imply that God made a mistake and later on, corrected it?

Verse 2:106: None of Our revelations do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, but We substitute something better or similar: know you not that Allah has power over all things?"

Explanation: This verse of the Qur’an can be interpreted in two different ways: a. The revelations that are abrogated are those revelations that were revealed before the Qur’an, for example the Torah, the Zaboor and the Injeel. Here Allah (swt) says that He does not cause the previous revelations to be forgotten but He substitutes them with something better or similar, indicating that the Torah, the Zaboor and the Injeel were substituted by the Qur’an. b. If we consider that the Arabic word 'ayat' in the above verse refers to the verses of the Qur’an, and not previous revelations, then it indicates that none of the verses of the Qur’an are abrogated by Allah but substituted with something better or similar. This means that certain verses of the Qur’an, that were revealed earlier were substituted by verses that were revealed later. I agree with both the interpretations. Many Muslims and non-Muslims misunderstand the second interpretation to mean that some of the earlier verses of the Qur’an were abrogated and no longer hold true for us today, as they have been replaced by the later verses of the Qur’an or the abrogating verses. This group of people even wrongly believe that these verses contradict each other. Let us analyze a few such examples. 

I. Produce a recital like the Qur’an / 10 Surahs / 1 Surah: Some pagan Arabs alleged that the Qur’an was forged by Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Allah (swt) challenges these Arabs in the following verse of Surah Al-Isra: "Say: If the whole of Mankind and Jinns were together to produce the like of this Qur’an they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support." [Al-Qur’an 17:88] Later the challenge was made easy in the following verse of Surah Al-Hud: "Or they may say, "He forged it." Say, "Bring you then ten Surahs forged, like unto it, and call (to your aid) whomsoever you can, other than Allah, if ye speak the truth!’." [Al-Qur’an 11:13] It was made easier in the following verse of Surah Yunus: "Or do they say, "He forged it"? Say: "Bring then a Surah like unto it, and call (to your aid) anyone you can, besides Allah, if it be ye speak the truth!’." [Al-Qur’an 10:38] Finally in Surah Al-Baqarah, Allah (swt) further simplified the challenge: And if ye are in doubt as to what We have revealed from time to time to Our servant, then produce a Surah like thereunto; and call your witnesses or helpers (if there are any) besides Allah if your (doubts) are true. But if you cannot – and of a surety you cannot – then fear the Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones – which is prepared for those who reject faith". [Al-Qur’an 2:23-24] Thus Allah (swt) made the challenges progressively easier. The progressively revealed verses of the Qur’an first challenged the pagans to produce a book like the Qur’an, then challenged them to produce ten Surahs (chapters) like those in the Qur’an, then one Surah and finally it challenges them to produce one Surah somewhat similar (mim mislihi) to the Qur’anic Surahs. This does not mean that the later verses that were revealed i.e. of Surah Baqarah chapter 2 verses 23 and 24 contradict the earlier three verses. Contradiction implies mentioning two things that cannot be possible simultaneously, or cannot take place simultaneously. The earlier verses of the Qur’an i.e. the abrogated verses are still the word of God and the information contained in it is true to this day. For instance the challenge to produce a recital like the Qur’an stands to this day. Similarly the challenge to produce ten Surahs and one Surah exactly like the Qur’an also holds true and the last challenge of producing one surah somewhat similar to the Qur’an also holds true. It does not contradict the earlier challenges, but this is the easiest of all the challenges posed by the Qur’an. If the last challenge cannot be fulfilled, the question of anyone fulfilling the other three more difficult challenges does not arise. Suppose I speak about a person that he is so dumb, that he would not be able to pass the 10th standard in school. Later I say that he would not be able to pass the 5th standard, and further say that he would not be able to pass even the 1st standard. Finally I say that he is so dull that he would not even be able to pass K.G. i.e. kindergarten. One has to pass kindergarten before one can be admitted to school. What I am stating is that the person is so dull as to be unable to pass even kindergarten. My four statements do not contradict each other, but my last statement i.e. the person would not be able to pass the kindergarten is sufficient to indicate the intelligence of that person. If a person cannot even pass kindergarten, the question of him passing the first standard or 5th or 10th, does not arise. 

II. Gradual prohibition of intoxicants: Another example of such verses is that related to gradual prohibition of intoxicants. The first revelation of the Qur’an to deal with intoxicants was the following verse from Surah Baqarah: "They ask you concerning wine and gambling say: ‘In them is great sin, and some profit, for men; but the sin is greater than the profit’." [Al-Qur’an 2:219] The next verse to be revealed regarding intoxicants is the following verse from Surah Nisa: "O you who believe! approach not prayers with a mind befogged, until you can understand all that you say – " [Al-Qur’an 4:43] The last verse to be revealed regarding intoxicants was the following verse from Surah Al-Maidah: "O ye who believe! intoxicants and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows, are an abomination of Satan’s handiwork; eschew such (abomination), that you may prosper." [Al-Qur’an 5:90] The Qur’an was revealed over a period of 22½ years. Many reforms that were brought about in the society were gradual. This was to facilitate the adoption of new laws by the people. An abrupt change in society always leads to rebellion and anarchy. The prohibition of intoxicants was revealed in three stages. The first revelation only mentioned that in the intoxicants there is great sin and some profit but the sin is greater than the profit. The next revelation prohibited praying in an intoxicated state, indicating that one should not consume intoxicants during the day, since a Muslim has to pray five times a day. This verse does state that when one is not praying at night one is allowed to consume intoxicants. It means one may have or one may not have. The Qur’an does not comment on it. If this verse had mentioned that one is allowed to have intoxicants while not praying then there would have been a contradiction. Allah(swt) chose words appropriately. Finally the total prohibition of intoxicants at all times was revealed in Surah Maidah chapter 5 verse 90. This clearly indicates that the three verses do not contradict each other. Had they been contradicting, it would not have been possible to follow all the three verses simultaneously. Since a Muslim is expected to follow each and every verse of the Qur’an, only by following the last verse i.e. of Surah Maidah (5:90), he simultaneously agrees and follows the previous two verses. Suppose I say that I do not live in Los Angeles. Later I say that I do not live in California. Finally I say, I do not live in the United States of America. This does not imply that these three statements contradict each other. Each statement gives more information than the previous statement. The third statement includes the information contained in the first two statements. Thus, only by saying that I do not live in the United States of America, it is obvious, that I also do not live in California nor New York. Similarly since consuming alcohol is totally prohibited, it is obvious that praying in an intoxicated state is also prohibited and the information that in intoxicants is "great sin and some profit for men; but the sin is greater than profit" also holds true. 

III. Qur’an does not contain any contradictions: The theory of abrogation does not imply that there is a contradiction in the Qur’an, since it is possible to follow all the verses of the Qur’an at the same time. If there is a contradiction in the Qur’an, then it cannot be the word of Allah (swt). "Do they not consider the Qur’an (with care)? had it been from other than Allah, they would surely have found therein much discrepancy (contradictions)."

9. The Qur’an says that only Allah knows the sex of the child in the womb of the mother but now science has advanced and we can easily determine the sex of the child in the womb by ultrasonography. Isn’t this verse of the Qur’an conflicting with medical science?

Verse 31:34 "Verily the knowledge of the Hour is with Allah (alone). It is He who sends down Rain, and He who knows what is in the wombs…."

Explanation: Allah is Omnipotent and Omniscient. Allah has granted knowledge of certain things to humankind. But Allah has knowledge of the seen as well as the unseen. Many people believe that the Qur’an claims that Allah alone knows the sex of the child in the mother’s womb. A similar message is given in the following verse: "Allah doth know what every female (womb) doth bear, By how much the wombs fall short (of their time or number) or do exceed. Every single thing is before His sight, in (due) proportion." [Al-Qur’an 13:8]. Today science has advanced and we can easily determine the sex of the child in the womb of a pregnant mother, using ultrasonography. The word ‘sex’ is not mentioned in the verse of the Qur’an. It is true that some translations and commentaries of this verse of the Glorious Qur’an say that only Allah knows the sex of the child in the mother’s womb. If you read the Arabic text of this verse, there is NO Arabic word corresponding to the English word ‘sex’. In fact the Qur’an says the knowledge of what is in the womb is with Allah alone. Many commentators have misunderstood it to mean only Allah knows the sex of the child in the womb, which is a mistake. It is indeed a miracle of God that we still have Quran amidst us in the original Arabic language, that we are capable of proving (refuting) things that are the mistakes of the translators or else we too would have fallen into the fate of the Torah and the Gospel. A million Christians speaking Arabic and living in Arabia can vouch for this, that no such word(s) exists in this verse of Holy Quran.

   The gist of this verse is that, NO one besides Allah can determine the nature of the child This verse does not refer to the sex of the child in the womb but it refers to, how the child in the mother’s womb will be. How will his nature be? Will he be a blessing or a curse to his parents? Will he be a boon or a bane to the society? Will he be good or evil? Will he go to heaven or hell? The complete knowledge of all things is with Allah alone. No scientist in the world, no matter how advanced his equipment, will ever be able to accurately determine the knowledge of these things about the child in the mother’s womb.


10: How would you justify such an obvious ambiguity in the Qur’anic verses which mention the law of inheritance. Let us suppose that a man dies and leaves behind three daughters, both parents and his wife. According to the verses stated below, the three daughters together will receive 2/3 of the share, both the parents will receive 1/3 of the share and the wife will receive 1/8 of the share. Let us add these:  2/3 + 1/3 + 1/8 = 9/8 = 1.125. Refer to Quranic verses 4:11-12.

"Allah directs you as regards your children’s [inheritance]: to the male a portion equal to that of two females: if only daughters, two or more, their share is two-thirds of the inheritance; if only one, her, share is a half. For parents, a sixth share of the inheritance to each, if the deceased left children; if no children, and the parents are the heirs, the mother has a third; if the deceased left brothers the mother has a sixth..." (Quran 4:11) 

"In what your wives leave, your share is a half, if they leave no child; but if they leave a child, you get a fourth; after payment of legacies and debts. In what you leave, their share is a fourth, if you leave no child; but if you leave a child, they get an eighth… "(Quran 4:12)

Explanation: We're afraid that you or your sources, have wrongly interpreted the law of inheritance from the Qur’an. It is this erroneous interpretation which has caused the apparent anomaly. In this regard, the foremost thing which needs to be appreciated is that the children of a deceased are the real beneficiaries of his or her inheritance. This is evident from the fact that their shares are not mentioned as a fraction of the total inheritance left behind. Rather they are mentioned in a way which indicates the proportion between the male children and the female ones. This entails that they shall be handed their shares in this proportion only after the rest of the inheritance is distributed in the prescribed way. Consequently, if the deceased only has female offspring (as in this case), their two-third share will be given from what remains after the inheritance is distributed among the rest of the heirs; your friend has made the cardinal mistake of giving this two-third share from the total inheritance. This of course has resulted in the anomaly that the shares exceed the available inheritance. 
    Let me give you an example to illustrate what has been said above. If it is said: ‘This money is for the children. Let each boy receive twice as much as a girl, and let the father receive half the amount and the brother one-fourth the amount’, any person who has a little linguistic sense will clearly understand these sentences to mean that the money is actually meant for the children. If these sentences had ended without a mention of the father’s and brother’s share, all the money would have been distributed among the boys and girls in the proportion indicated. But since the father is also to be given half the amount and the bother one-fourth the amount, it is imperative that the father and the brother should first receive this amount and the what remains should then be distributed among the children. 
    Consequently if the shares of the children are given from the what remains after giving the shares of the parents and the wife, they never exceed the actual amount. In the given situation, the shares are: 

    Share of the parents: 1/3 of the total amount 
    Share of the wife: 1/8 of the total amount 
    Share of the three daughters: 2/3 of what remains after giving the above shares.

Also Read: Discussion on the Daughter's share of inheritance and Understanding the Law of Inheritance in Islam


11. God of Islam threatens the wives of Prophet Muhammad of divorce and then replacing them with better ones and legalizes domestic violence by allowing Muslim men to beat up their wives.

Verse 66:5 It may be, if he divorced you (all), that Allah will give him in exchange consorts better than you,- who submit (their wills), who believe, who are devout, who turn to Allah in repentance, who worship (in humility), who travel (for Faith) and fast,- previously married or virgins. O ye who believe! save yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones, over which are (appointed) angels stern (and) severe, who flinch not (from executing) the Commands they receive from Allah, but do (precisely) what they are commanded.

Explanation: The Prophet's household was not like any other household. The consorts of Purity were expected to hold a higher standard in behavior and reticence than ordinary women, as they had higher work to perform and higher degrees to attain but they were human beings after all and were subject to the weaknesses and hence, they too, sometimes failed. In verse 66:3. "When the Prophet disclosed a matter in confidence to one of his consorts, and she then divulged it (to another), and Allah made it known to him, he confirmed part thereof and repudiated a part. Then when he told her thereof, she said, "Who told thee this? "He said, "He told me Who knows and is well-acquainted (with all things)." Who were these two consorts and what was the matter in confidence which was disclosed, we are not expressly told. The sacred words imply that the matter was of great importance to the principle involved but the details were not important for permanent record. To note here is the fact that ALL that was revealed to the prophet, didn't go on to become Quranic verses as is the case mentioned here. The time or place of Angel informing Prophet that one of His wife has disclosed the confidential matter to the other, is nowhere found in Qur'an. From the case of only consorts in verse 66:04, we now come to the case of all the consorts in Verse 66:05. Their duties and responsibilities were higher than those of other women, and therefore their failure will also be more serious. This is only a hypothetical scenario revealed by God in order to show them the virtues expected of them: absolute faith and devotion, worship and service of God. From them again, the more general application follows - to all women in Islam. Later (chronologically) in verse 33:6, Allah(swt) bestows an honor on these wives of the prophet, which no women in Islam has ever attained, "The Prophet is closer to the Believers than their own selves, and his wives are their mothers. Blood-relations among each other have closer personal ties, in the Decree of Allah. Than (the Brotherhood of) Believers and Muhajirs: nevertheless do ye what is just to your closest friends: such is the writing in the Decree (of Allah)"

The moral we have to draw by virtue of this verse forming a part of Qur'an is: If anything is told to us (wives) in confidence, especially by one at the Head of affairs ( husband in most cases), we must not divulge it to our closest friends and if such divulgence is made in most secret whispers, Allah's plan will be such, that it will come to Light sooner or later and will expose those guilty of breach of confidence.

Regarding the issue of Quran allowing Muslim men to beat up their wives, then it's probably borne out of mis-representation of these verses:

Verse 4:34-35 "Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has given the one more (strength) than the other, and because they support them from their means. Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient, and guard in (the husband's) absence what Allah would have them guard. As to those women on whose part ye fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), (Next), refuse to share their beds, (And last) beat them ; but if they return to obedience, seek not against them Means (of annoyance): For Allah is Most High, great (above you all). 4:35 "If ye fear a breach between them twain, appoint (two) arbiters, one from his family, and the other from hers; if they wish for peace, Allah will cause their reconciliation: For Allah hath full knowledge, and is acquainted with all things."
 

When someone wants honestly to understand some noble verses in the Qur'an, then what do you think she/he must do? He must not only read them, but also he must study the history of these verses. Every single verse in the Quran came for a purpose. So what was the purpose of the noble verse 4:34 above?

1400 years ago, the Arab men's jealousy was so dangerous (still is, amongst few), It was needed to be controlled and hence this divine revelation. So verses 4:34-36 came as a mercy for those women who flirt with other men, or seem to be too open for other men to approach them. Abu Huraira reported that Sa'd bin Ubada said:
"Messenger of Allah, if I were to find with my wife a man, should I not touch him before bringing four witnesses? Allah's Messenger (pbuh) said: Yes. He said: By no means. By Him Who has sent you with the Truth, I would hasten with my sword to him before that. Allah's Messenger (pbuh) said: Listen to what your chief says. He is jealous of his honour, I am more jealous than he (is) and God is more jealous than I."  (Sahih Muslim Number 3571)

Now let’s know when exactly this verse was revealed. Once, our Prophet (pbuh) was approached with questions "What if the wife intentionally disobeys her husband in what Allah Almighty has permitted for him upon her?  And what if the wife flirts with other men, or can't be trusted to honor her husband's dignity?  How should it be dealt with?" The answer to those two questions was the Noble Verses 4:34-35.

These verses prove to us that Islam is by far the most merciful and rational religion to women, because it not only gives the woman 2 chances to repent before her husband gets any authority to beat her, but it also saves her from getting divorced and destroy her family.

Islam does not allow men to beat their wives at anytime they want and as much as they want as the Anti-Islamics claim with their lies.  The only time Islam allows a husband to beat his wife is when she intentionally disobeys her husband in what Allah Almighty has permitted for him upon her or when she flirts or show disloyalty for the third time. This law prevents men from doing something crazy such as committing murders against their wives.  This law also allows women to repent and to come back to their faith and senses, and it prevents men from bothering their wives with their wives bad past.  Once the wife repents and stops dishonoring her husband, then it would be all water under the bridge and it would become a forgotten past from both the husband and the wife. Therefore, the Noble Verse 4:34 is a merciful verse on women and not a harsh one.

Now some English translators of the Quran have added a word "(lightly)" in between parenthesis though no such word exists in original Arabic verse but maybe, this insertion finds it's credibility from a Hadith where Prophet (pbuh) specified that the beating must not include the face.  Hitting the face of any human being is not allowed in Islam. The Prophet (pbuh) said:
"When one of you inflicts a beating, he should avoid striking the face.”  

So in conclusion, wife beating is not allowed in Islam for any reason, except for the case of Noble Verses 4:34-35 when the wife intentionally disobeys her husband in what Allah (saw) has permitted for him upon her or flirts with other men: Narrated Mu'awiyah al-Qushayri:
"I went to the Apostle of Allah (pbuh) and asked him: What do you say (command) about our wives? He replied: Give them food what you have for yourself, and clothe them by which you clothe yourself, and do not beat them, and do not revile them." (Sunan Abu-Dawud, Number 2139)

Allah (saw) ordered men to love and respect their wives, and He the Almighty honored women and spoke highly of them.  Let us look at the following Noble Verses too:
"O ye who believe! Ye are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should ye treat them with harshness, that ye may take away part of the dower [money given by the husband to the wife for the marriage contract] ye have given them, except where they have been guilty of open lewdness; on the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them it may be that ye dislike a thing, and God brings about through it a great deal of good." ( Quran 4:19)

Reader's comment: Recently a ruling was published in Gulf News which gave sweeping rights to Husbands though it also said that, " a wife may ask her husband for a divorce if he injures her, either by word or action." How does it justify the husband's rights over his wife or his usage of violence against her, in the light of Islam?

First, let's look at the issue of violence against women, specifically wives, in our present day society. In an article published in New York Times, in it's December issue of Year 2000 titled: "Kerosene, Weapon of Choice for Attacks on Wives in India', revealed grisly details about the apathy of Indian women. It revealed that more than half of married women justified wife-beating in a recently released survey of 90,000 women sponsored by India's Health Ministry, most commonly for neglecting housekeeping and child-rearing duties, showing disrespect to in-laws, going out without a husband's permission or arousing a husband's suspicions of infidelity, while dowry deaths, including suicides and murders, have risen to 6,975 in 1998 from 4,648 in 1995, according to official figures, researchers and others in the legal system say they believe domestic violence cases are often inaccurately classified as dowry deaths.

On accounts of Infidelity, One-third of divorce litigation is caused by online affairs by either sexes (husband or wife) revealed Infidelity Check under the title :"This Is An Internet E-Mergency", The Fortino Group

To look beyond this one page Dubai Court's ruling, we also have to consider Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) example. He had instructed Muslim husbands that they should not have recourse to these measures (wife beating) except in extreme cases such as open lewdness committed by the wife. Even in these cases the punishment should be slight and if the wife desists, the husband is not permitted to irritate her:

"In case they are guilty of open lewdness you may leave them alone in their beds and inflict slight punishment. If they are obedient to you, do not seek against them any means of annoyance" (Tirmidthi)

Furthermore, the Prophet of Islam has condemned any unjustifiable beating. Some Muslim wives complained to him that their husbands had beaten them. Hearing that, the Prophet categorically stated that: "Those who do so (beat their wives) are not the best among you" (Abu Dawood).

It has to be remembered at this point that the Prophet has also said: "The best of you is he who is best to his family, and I am the best among you to my family" (Tirmidthi).

The Prophet advised one Muslim woman, whose name was Fatimah bint Qais, not to marry a man because the man was known for beating women: "I went to the Prophet and said: Abul Jahm and Mu'awiah have proposed to marry me. The Prophet (by way of advice) said: As to Mu'awiah he is very poor and Abul Jahm is accustomed to beating women" (Muslim).

Now let's relate to these Quranic laws (which stands unchanged and eternally applicable) to other religious laws of those times which keep getting changed every now and then:

Hinduism: Hindu personal law for instance didn't allow women to gain divorce under any conditions. It was re-interpreted initially in 1772 when Warren Hastings appointed ten Brahmin pandits from Bengal to compile a digest of Hindu scriptural law in civil matters - marriage, divorce, inheritance, succession. These interpretations, however were only codified into one uniform law in 194 1. Prior to this, there had been separate laws for different castes and communities i.e. separate customary laws existed for Nairs, Nambudris, Kulins, lats etc. The Draft Hindu Code was thus based on specifically Brahmanical interpretations of Hinduism. changes were introduced into this as a result of the struggles of women and men in the early women's movement and hence contained some rights for Hindu women. It is significant, however, that the Hindu Code Bill was only passed after Independence after a great deal of opposition.

Christianity: The New Testament unequivocally advocates the indissolubility of marriage. It is attributed to Jesus to have said, "But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, causes her to become adulteress, and anyone who marries the divorced woman commits adultery" (Matthew 5:32). This uncompromising ideal is, without a doubt, unrealistic.

Judaism: Judaism, on the other hand, allows divorce even without any cause. The Old Testament gives the husband the right to divorce his wife even if he just dislikes her:

"If a man marries a woman who becomes displeasing to him because he finds something indecent about her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, and if after she leaves his house she becomes the wife of another man, and her second husband dislikes her and writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, or if he dies, then her first husband, who divorced her, is not allowed to marry her again after she has been defiled" (Deut. 24:1-4).

The above verses have caused some considerable debate among Jewish scholars because of their disagreement over the interpretation of the words "displeasing", "indecency", and "dislikes" mentioned in the verses. The Talmud records their different opinions: "The school of Shammai held that a man should not divorce his wife unless he has found her guilty of some sexual misconduct, while the school of Hillel say he may divorce her even if she has merely spoiled a dish for him. Rabbi Akiba says he may divorce her even if he simply finds another woman more beautiful than she" (Gittin 90a-b). 

Wives, on the other hand, cannot initiate divorce under any of these laws.

Islam: Islam occupies the middle ground between Christianity and Judaism with respect to divorce. Marriage in Islam is a sanctified bond that should not be broken except for compelling reasons. A woman came to the Prophet Muhammad seeking the dissolution of her marriage, she told the Prophet that she did not have any complaints against her husband's character or manners. Her only problem was that she honestly did not like him to the extent of not being able to live with him any longer. The Prophet asked her: "Would you give him his garden (the marriage gift he had given her) back?" she said: "Yes". The Prophet then instructed the man to take back his garden and accept the dissolution of the marriage (Bukhari).

In some cases, A Muslim wife might be willing to keep her marriage but find herself obliged to claim for a divorce because of some compelling reasons such as: Cruelty of the husband, desertion without a reason, a husband not fulfilling his conjugal responsibilities, etc. In these cases the Muslim court dissolves the marriage.

In short, Islam has offered the Muslim woman some unequalled rights: she can end the marriage through Khula' and she can sue for a divorce. A Muslim wife can never become chained by a recalcitrant husband. It was these rights that enticed Jewish women who lived in the early Islamic societies of the seventh century C.E. to seek to obtain bills of divorce from their Jewish husbands in Muslim courts. The Rabbis declared these bills null and void. In order to end this practice, the Rabbis gave new rights and privileges to Jewish women in an attempt to weaken the appeal of the Muslim courts. Jewish women living in Christian countries were not offered any similar privileges since the Roman law of divorce practiced there was no more attractive than the Jewish law.

Reader's comment: What if the husband flirts with other women? What can the wife do then? Beat him?

GuidedOnes: The  answer is that the wife would then have the right to get divorced from her husband. In Fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence), the Arabic word that describes the act of the wife asking the court (qazi) to divorce her from her husband is "khale3" , or " khale ". Ina country governed by Islamic sharia laws, the husband would also get flogged up to 10 stripes for committing adultery outside marriage . I'm pretty sure that getting flogged up even 2 stripes would hurt 10 times more than getting beaten up by one's wife.

Reader's Comment: This is surely one of the best apologist attempt I've read so far to defend the indefensible. No book present on Earth can anymore claim to be divine when put under the scrutiny of modern ethics and civilized behaviors and the sooner Muslims too realize this the better it will be for them. Having said that I would like to quote from Quran itself: " When He it is, who has sent you a book, explained in detail. (Al Anaam :114)". Why then, there arises a need for all these convoluted explanations?

GuidedOnes: The answer to your question is revealed in the verse that you so Rightly quoted, if only you had the ability to ponder over it. The whole verse reads like: "Say (O Muhammed!): `Shall I seek for any judge other than Allah? - when He it is Who has sent to you the Book, explained in detail.' They know full well, those to whom We have given the Book, that it hath been sent down from your Lord in truth. Never be then of those who doubt." (Al-Anaam, 114). The requirement of writing this article  would never have arisen had people not tried to give false picture of the WHOLE Quran by misquoting verses out of context. The verse you quoted talks about Quran as a 'BOOK EXPLAINED IN DETAIL', i.e. when read in toto, as a whole and NOT mischievously stating ONLY the parts and omitting others to completely change the desired meaning. No BOOK worth it's name can ever fulfill it's purpose when someone embarks upon this strategy during it's reading/learning process. If you are a student in a school/college and read only a few lines out of it to leave the rest, you're bound to fail. Every book worth it's name, is written for a purpose and has a context, more so, if it's related to a predominant spiritual movement. If someone reads the whole Quran, the context becomes self evident. To further ease the readers ability to grasp, some translators and commentators of Quran, have added their footnotes based upon the chroniclers records of the incidents surrounding the revelation of these verses in those times of seventh century Arabia. For a non-prejudiced mind, just Quranic reading should suffice.

   An example of this malicious propaganda about Quran is, the usual reference thousands of Anti Islamic sites give to the following verse:"...fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem." Quran 9:5. Obviously, when confronted, this would require an explanation by Muslims by stating the other Quranic verse 60:8-9 as cited above in Question No.1. Another example of such attempts by Anti Muslims even during the time of the prophet was brought to fore when someone came to a party of Muslims asking them to 'not to offer prayers anymore!', as a revelation of Quran has prohibited it in these words "O you who believe! approach not prayers...Quran 4:43." Some Muslim might have been temporarily duped by this ignorant until someone related them the full verse in this regard which goes like: "O you who believe! approach not prayers with a mind befogged, until you can understand all that you say – " [Al-Qur’an 4:43] So, such attempts to obfuscate the divine Truth have been going on since time immemorial but God says in HIS divine message : " 9:32 Fain would they extinguish Allah's light with their mouths, but Allah will not allow but that His light should be perfected, even though the Unbelievers may detest (it)." Hardly does these people who throw around Quranic verses out of context and out of ignorance realize that their Fight to gain supremacy over God's book is not a fight with Muslims but with God HIMSELF.  

If this article still appears to you as an apologist attempt, then I can safely deduce that you are an extremely bigoted hypocrite having an acute mental block towards anything and everything that's good about Islam.
 

Also read: The infallibility of Sahih Hadeeths - Understanding 're-narrated reports'

by Guided Ones   

 

 

         With due credits to literature by Dr. Zakir Naik and Abdullah Yusuf Ali.

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