From the “The Goat Ate My Homework” department…
I was looking for one thing and, well, wandered… Frankly, I’m not sure now WHAT I’d started looking up. Oh, wait, it was Maqdad. On Al Jazeera they had an interview with a guy named Maqdad whose “clan” had kidnapped folks from another clan. He looked similar to some Celtic folks I’ve known in “look” ( basically European, but with that slightly more wrinkle look and something about the eyes that were more Irish looking…) so I’d wondered if Mac and Maq had any linguistic touchstone… but that is now ‘for another day’.
In trying to find out what Maqdad meant, or how it was broken down in Arabic, I ran into a page about the Koran. For those not familiar with it, Islam makes a pretty big deal about the Koran having been handed down straight from God and being absolute and pure. Not any error, omission, edit, or word out of place. Rather like the doctrine of Papal Infallibility. One of those cornerstones that simply MUST be swallowed whole for the rest to be accepted…
This is despite the fact that we know the Koran was assembled out of bits some many years after Mohamed had died. (The ‘bits’ are assembled in size order, as an example of this evidence). There isn’t any controversy about the assembly. The “when” and “who” are agreed.
So I run into this page that says “Um, maybe not so pure…”
Realize this like saying the Pope was wrong on the nature of Christ. ( Christology. Was Christ “just a man” and a prophet, like Mohammed? Was Christ a “Holy Man” and above others, the son of God, but distinct from God? Was Christ part of a single holy being “Father, Son, and Holy Ghost”? Muslim, some Protestants, Catholic… such are the things that hundreds of years of slaughter and mayhem are made from… )
The Perversion of Qur’an and
the Loss of Many Parts of It
On page 131 of his book, “El-Sheaa and Correction”, the contemporary Muslim scholar, Dr. Mosa-El-Mosawy, makes this frank confession,
“Those who adopt the notion of the perversion of the Qur’an are present among all different Islamic groups, but the majority of them come from the El-Sheaa scholars.”
Perversion of Qur’an is an unimaginable notion to the lay Muslim because the Scholars of Islam are hiding this truth from being published or becoming known.
Of course, we weren’t just satisfied with what Dr. El-Mosawy has already mentioned, but we went back to the most popular ancient scholars and to Muhammad’s relatives and companions to investigate this notion concerning the perversion and loss of several parts of the Qur’an because those are the trustworthy people regarding the history and development of Islam.
Upon examining the testimonies of these great companions, the answer was positive. They clearly stated that perversion and loss of large fragments of the Qur’an did occur. Let us scrutinize their testimony in order to present to deluded Muslims the truth as it is proclaimed by their trusted spiritual leaders and scholars. The deceptive veil must be removed so people can see the true face of the Qur’an.
’Ibn Umar al–Khattab explicitly admits,
“Let no one of you say that he has acquired the entire Qur’an for how does he know that it is all? Much of the Qur’an has been lost, thus let him say, ‘I have acquired of it what is available”’ (Suyuti: Itqan, part 3, page 72).
A’isha (also page 72) adds to the story of ibn Umar and says,
“During the time of the prophet, the chapter of the Parties used to be two hundred verses when read. When Uthman edited the copies of the Qur’an, only the current (verses) were recorded” (73 verses).
For those who do not know, A’isha was the spouse of The Prophet Mohammed. That’s kind of a ‘close connection’… She had a copy of the Koran that was one of the more, um, “proved”…
Many of these things look to be reasonably well attested. From what little I knew already, I can verify the compilation of the Koran and some of the persons listed in the page as to their role. These folks did their homework…
I’m assuming it is a goat. Goats are not picky about what the eat. Goats are common in the Middle East. So “what about the goat?” Welllll…. seems that an an inopportune time a ‘domestic animal’ ate the homework… The Prophet Mohammed had just died. Things were a bit of a mess. “Stuff” happens…
Events Which Led To The Loss Of Some Verses
A Domesticated Animal Eats Qur’anic Verses
In his book (volume 8, part II, pages 235 and 236), Ibn Hazm says plainly,
“The verses of stoning and breast feeding were in the possession of A’isha in a (Qur’anic) copy. When Muhammad died and people became busy in the burial preparations, a domesticated animal entered in and ate it.”
A’isha herself declared that and she knew exactly what she possessed. Also, Mustafa Husayn, who edited and reorganized the book, “al-Kash-shaf” by the Zamakh-Shari, asserts this fact in page 518 of part 3. He says that the ones who related this incident and said that a domesticated animal ate the verses were reliable persons among them ’Abdulla Ibn Abi Bakr and A’isha herself. This same story has been mentioned also by Dar-al-Qutni, al-Bazzar and al Tabarani, on the authority of Muhammad Ibn Ishaq who heard it from ’Abdulla who himself heard it from A’isha.
Professor Mustafa indicates that this does not negate that the abrogation of these verses may have occurred before the domesticated animal ate them. Why then did ’Umar want to record the verse of the stoning in the Qur’an if its recitation was abrogated? And why did people used to read the verses of the breast-feeding? And, if Muhammad died while these verses were still recited who abrogated them? Did the domesticated animal abrogate them? It is evident that this really did occur according to the witness of the companions, Muslim scholars, and A’isha herself.
There is a lot more at the link. Folks who are really interested in the history of the Koran ought to read it.
For me, the issue of Papal Infallibility and the idea of a Perfect Koran were always a bit of a stretch too far. In some ways, it is a bit of comfort to realize they had as much trouble keeping a pure copy of the original book as Christians have had keeping ONE clean copy of the Bible. Not until about 300 A.D. did it get canonized, and even then we’ve got disputes between Protestants and Catholics and Eastern Orthodox and Coptics about what goes in. Ethiopians have a slightly different version too. Oh, and the Gnostic Bible is yet another variation (and likely much closer to the Bible that was used by Mohammed in his teaching… that he used a ‘lost version’ is the basis of the Muslim repudiation of the current Bible as being unclean and impure.)
On the other hand, it is clearly a point that will cause a great deal of strife and heartburn for Muslim scholars. One INDISPUTABLE Koran is a keystone of The Faith and essential for generating the focus and energy of many followers; especially some of the more violent ones… Start letting in some doubt, even a little bit, and first thing you know, it will be like Christians; arguing over just how do you really know the nature of Christ?
So “refreshing” at the same time I can see it as an “Aw Shit” moment for Islam if folks start actually looking at that history and reading the writings of contemporary reporters.
All due to a Goat…
No wonder they eat them ;-)