The Quran - The miracle of miracles
“Say: ‘If the whole of mankind and Jinns were to gather together to produce the like of this Quran, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support.’”
Al-Quran “As a miracle of purity of style, of wisdom and of truth, it is the one miracle claimed by Mohammed, his standing miracle he called it, and a miracle indeed it is!”
The proof of the Quran is in its own beauty and nature, and the circumstances in which it was promulgated. The doubters of the world are challenged to produce a Book like it and have produced none. It is the only revealed Book whose text stands pure and uncorrupted to day, after 1400 years!
What is a miracle?
I think it is necessary that we have a clear picture of what we mean by a miracle. Here are some definitions:
- “An event that appears so inexplicable by the laws of nature, that it is held to be supernatural in origin or an act of God.”
- “A person, thing or event that excites admiring awe.”
- “An act beyond human power, an impossibility.”
It is logical that greater the impossibility, greater the miracle. For example, should a person expire before our very eyes and is certified dead by a qualified medical man, yet later on a mystic or a saint commands the corpse to ‘arise!’, and to everybody’s astonishment the person gets up and walks away, we would label that as a miracle.
But if the resurrection of the dead took place after the corpse had been in the mortuary for three days, then we would acclaim this as a greater miracle. And if the dead was made to arise from the grave, decades or centuries after the body had decomposed and rotted away, then in that case we would label it the greatest miracle of them all!
“And is it not enough for them that we have sent down to you the Book which is rehearsed to them? Verily, in it is Mercy and a reminder to those who believe.”
As proof of the Divine Authorship and the miraculous nature of the Holy Quran, two arguments are advanced by the Almighty Himself:
“That We” (God Almighty) have revealed to you (O! Muhammad!) “the Book to you” who is absolutely an unlearned person. An ‘ummi’ Prophet. One who cannot read or write. One who cannot sign his own name.
Let Thomas Carlyle testify regarding the educational qualifications of Muhammad: “One other circumstance we must not forget: That he had no school learning; of the thing we call school learning none at all.”
Moreover the Divine Author (God Almighty) Himself testifies to the veracity of Muhammad’s claim that he could never have composed the contents of the Holy Quran; he could not have been it’s author:
“And thou wast not (able) to recite a Book before this (Book came), nor art thou (able) to transcribe it with thy right hand: In that case, indeed, would the talkers of vanities have doubted.”
The Author of the Quran is reasoning with us, that had Muhammad been a learned man, and had he been able to read or write, then in that case the babblers in the market places might have had some justification to doubt his claim that the Holy Quran is God’s Word. In the event of Muhammad being a literate person, the accusation of his enemies that he had probably copied his Book (AI-Quran) from the writings of the Jews and the Christians, or that perhaps he had been studying Aristotle and Plato, or that he must have browsed through the ‘Torat,’ the ‘Zabur’ and the ‘Injeel’ and had rehashed it all in a beautiful language, might have carried some weight. Then, “The Talkers of Vanities” might have had a point. But even this flimsy pretence has been denied to the unbeliever and the cynic:
A point hardly big enough to hang a fly upon: The Bible was not translated into Arabic until the tenth century of the Christian Era, so no Arab living before the year 1000 would have had the opportunity to examine the written text of the Bible in his own language.
- Torat, Zabur and Injeel: these are the Arabic terms of the original revelations God granted Moses, David and Jesus (peace be upon them all) respectively.
‘The Book’? Yes, the “Book” itself, carries its own evidence proving its Divine Authorship. Study the Book from any angle. Scrutinize it. Why not take up the Author’s challenge if your doubts are genuine?
“Do they not consider the Quran (with care)? Had it been from other Than Allah, they would surely have found therein Much discrepancy.”
It is inconceivable that any human author would remain consistent in his teachings and his preaching for a period of over two decades. From the age of forty, when Muhammad received his first call from Heaven to the age sixty-three when he breathed his last, for twenty three years the Holy Prophet practised and preached Islam. In those twenty three years, he passed through the most conflicting vicissitudes of life.
Any man, during the course of such a mission, would be forced by circumstances to make “honourable” compromises, and cannot help contradicting himself. No man can ever write the same always, as the Message of the Holy Quran is: consistent with itself, throughout! Or is it that the unbelievers’ objections are merely argumentative, refractory, against their own better light and judgement?
Furthermore, the Holy Quran contains or mentions many matters relating to the nature of the universe which were unknown to man before but which subsequently through evolution and discoveries of Science have fully confirmed a field where an untutored mind would have most certainly lost in wild and contradictory speculations!
Again and again when miracles are demanded from the Prophet of God by the cynical and frivolous few, he is made to point to the Quran Message from High as “The Miracle.” The Miracle of Miracles! And men of wisdom, people with literary and spiritual insight, who were honest enough to themselves, recognised and accepted Quran as a genuine miracle.
Today, there are in the world more than one thousand million Muslims who unhesitatingly accept that the Holy Quran is the “Word of God” and that it is a “Miracle.” Why should they not, when even avowed enemies are paying unsolicited tributes regarding the miraculous nature of this Book of God:
a) The Rev. R. Bosworth Smith
In his book “Mohammed and Mohammedanism” he says about the Quran: “A miracle of purity of style, of wisdom and of truth.”
b) Another Englishman - A.J. Arberry
In the preface to his English translation of the Holy Quran he says: “Whenever I hear the Quran chanted, it is as though I am listening to music, underneath the flowing melody, there is sounding all the time the insistent beat of a drum, it is like the beating of my heart.”
From these words and the rest of his preface he sounds like a Muslim, but regretfully he died outside the pale of Islam.
c) And yet another Briton, Marmaduke Picktall
in the forward to his translation of the Holy Quran, describes it as: “That inimitable symphony, the very sound of which move men to tears and ecstasy.”
This Author embraced Islam before translating the Quran, and we are not in a position to verify whether he wrote the above effect before or after his conversion.
d) J. Christy Wilson
In “Introducing Islam” New York 1950 “Next to the bible it (the Quran) is the most esteemed and most powerful religious book in the world.” (Coming from a Christian critic of Islam, we will not take exception to his placing the Quran in the second place).
e) J. Shillidy, D.D.,
In “The Lord Jesus in the Koran, “The Koran is the Mohammedan bible, and is more reverenced than any other sacred book, more than the Jewish Old Testament or the Christian New Testament.”
We can quite easily adduce a dozen more eulogies to the above list. Friends and foes alike pay ungrudging commendations to the Last and Final Revelation of God - the Holy Quran. The contemporaries of Muhammad saw in its beauty and majesty, the nobility of its Call and the magnanimity of its Message, the Sign and Miracle of God’s Handiwork, and accepted Islam.
To all the tributes and testimonies the unbeliever and the sceptic may say that these are all subjective feelings. He might further seek refuge in the pretext that he does not know Arabic. He is heard to say,
“I do not see what you see, nor do I feel as you feel. How am I to know that God exists and that it is He Who inspired His Messenger Muhammad with that beautiful Message; the Quran?” He continues
“I am not averse to the beauty of its philosophy, its practical ethics and high morality, I am prepared to concede that Muhammad was a sincere man and that he gave many beautiful precepts for human welfare. What I cannot subscribe to is what you Muslims claim, ‘a supernatural authority for his dicta’.”
Exhortations to the sciences
“The stress which the Holy Quran has laid on the scientific study of the universe is a phenomenon unique in the religious literature of the world. Repeatedly it calls our attention to the multifarious phenomena of nature occurring around us. Repeatedly it exhorts the Muslims that the pursuit of scientific knowledge is one of their religious duties. Repeatedly it emphasises the great truth unknown to the pre Quranic world that everything in nature is for the service of man and should be harnessed by him for his use. It exhorts us to study the structure and function of the human organism, the structure, functions and distribution of animals, the form, structure, functions, classification and distribution of plants, and these are problems of biology.
It exhorts us to study the order of nature and the general properties of matter as affected by energy, which is the problem of modern physics.
It exhorts us to study the properties of substances both elementary and compound and the laws of their combination and action one upon another which is the problem of modern chemistry.
It exhorts us to study the structure and mineral constitution of the globe, the different strata of which it is composed, the changes that take place in its organic and inorganic matter, etc., which are the problem of modern geology.
It exhorts us to study the general description of the earth, its physical divisions into seas, rivers, mountains, plains, etc., and the minerals, plants and animals in each, and its political divisions which are the problems of modern geography.
It exhorts us to study the causes which bring about the alternation of day and night, the variation of the seasons, the movements of the planets and other celestial phenomena, which are the problems of modern astronomy.
It exhorts us to study the movements of winds, the formation and evolution of clouds and the production of rain, and other similar phenomena, which are the problems of modern meteorology."
For centuries, Muslims were world leaders in the field of scientific learning. Then slowly, the leadership began to slip away from their hands. Muslims had failed in their leadership role and materialistic Europe moved forward to fill the vacuum in leadership created by the Muslims.
Contribution made by the Muslims
“The intellectual upheaval created by Islam was a gigantic one. There is not a single department of learning which the Muslim scholars have left untouched and which they have not carved out a high position for themselves. In truth, Islam intends the Muslim community to be a community of intellectuals, and the cultivation of science and all other forms of learning is one of the primary aims of Islam. Had it not been for the Muslims, Europe would never have seen its way to the Renaissance and the modern scientific era would never have dawned. Those nations who have received their knowledge of science from Europe are in fact indirectly the disciples of the Islamic community of the past. Humanity owes to Islam a debt which it can never repay and gratitude which it can never forget.”
The silver-tongued orator ended his masterful exposition of the topic “Cultivation of Science by the Muslims,” with the words “Before I conclude, let me affirm once more that the Muslim community is out and out a creation of Islam which in its turn is rooted in Divine revelation. Nothing but belief in and the practice of Islam can make an individual a Muslim. Islam has laid it down as a religious duty that a Muslim should enquire into the reality of objects around him, so that his scientific enquiry may lead him to the knowledge of his Creator. Scientific enquiry in Islam is not an end but a means to the attainment of a higher end. And this is really the true end of humanity.
Absolutely unique in its recording
Among all the extant religious literature of the world, the Holy Quran is absolutely unique. Its recording and preservation are miraculous! Because it stands out distinctly from the ordinary human pattern of narration; the short-sighted and the inimical say that it is incoherent or incongruous. The pattern definitely is different. It is unique. It is miraculous. Let me substantiate what I assert.
Every other religious book is set on the pattern of, “Once upon a time...” or “The fox and the grapes... the wolf and lamb,” etc. i.e.
1) “In the beginning (Once Upon a Time) God created the heaven and the earth”
2) “In the beginning (Once Upon a Time) was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God.”
3) “This is the genealogy (The Origin, The Beginning) of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.”
4) “Now after the death of Moses the servant of the Lord it came to pass (so it Happened, Once Upon a Time), that the Lord spoke unto Joshua”
5) “Now after the death of Joshua it came to pass (so it Happened, Once Upon a Time), that the children of Israel asked the Lord”
6) “Now it came to pass (So It Happened, Once Upon a Time) in the days when the judges ruled, that there was famine in the land”
7) “Now there was a certain man (Once Upon a Time) of Ramathaimzophim, of the mount Ephraim”
8) “Now it came to pass (So It Happened, Once Upon a Time) after the death of Saul”
9) “Now (Once Upon a Time) King David was old (Gone Cold) and stricken in years, and they covered him with clothes, but he gat no heat”.
10) “Now (Once Upon a Time) in the first year of Cyrus King of Persia”.
11) “Now it came to pass (So It Happened, Once Upon a Time) in the days of Ahasuerus”
12. “Now it came to pass (So It Happened, Once Upon a Time) in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month”
Note 1: The first verse of the Bible speaks about “the heaven and the earth “ in the singular. In the holy Quran the word earth is always singular whereas the word heavens is in the plural. Some thing to ponder upon! The word “Genesis” itself means the beginning, this is, after all how every human tale ought to start. It should begin with the “beginning!”
Note 2: In the original Greek manuscripts of the new Testament there is no such thing as a capital letter and a small letter. The Christian theologians have contrived capitals according to their religious prejudices into their translations of the Bible i.e. God and god.
If the above examples do not confuse and bewilder you, then nothing else will! You are inevitably struck with the “once upon a time” syndrome. You have cultivated a predilection for man made stories, even if they be true. The style, the pattern, the narration is what I am speaking about. This is how humans think, talk and write. No blame on them for humans will be humans!
All the above references are from the authorised King James Version (KJV) which is the most popular version among the Christians of the world. You must have noted that every verse in the above quotations is 1:1, 1:1; meaning the first chapter and the first verse of every book of the Bible. Which start with “Now, Now, now!”. Try it out, see for yourself how many more such beginnings you can find in the “Book of Books” I must, however warn you that your Bible Concordances will not help you. You will have to page through the Bible the same way as I did.
The editors of the RSV (the Revised Standard Version) of the Bible; supported by 32 scholars of the highest eminence; backed by 52 co-operating denominations, concluded their verdict regarding its authorship - Not God but “Possibly Samuel”.
Their verdict again -”Not definitely known, perhaps Samuel”! Most definitely Not God!
Amazingly, the inspired editors of the RSV say about the authorship of the Book of Judges - “Possibly Samuel,” and for the Book of Ruth - “Perhaps Samuel,” but when they come to the Book of Samuel (?) himself they declare Author - “Unknown”!
Again they unashamedly confess - Author - “Probably written or edited by Ezra”! Note their guarded semantics - “Possibly, perhaps, probably, etc.”
The Last Testament was a bombshell for the Christian priests and preachers. They had never heard the expression The Last Testament in their lives. Quoting old and New, New, and Old will not help because the answer is in The Last Testament of God to mankind! The Holy Quran.
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