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From the Archive
Rules, Rules, and more Rules
Is There a Minimum Level of Faith and Good Deeds to Enter Paradise in the Hereafter?
Pakistan needs more than elections. Only a new political class will do
Fatwas Part Seventy-Five
'Israelis stealing organs in Haiti'
Torture within Quranist Viewpoint (6): The Disbelievers and Their Asking for the Infliction of Torture/Torment in This World
Psychological Roots of Terrorism By Abdel Razak M Ali
A Dialogue with A 15-Year-Old Syrian Girl about Fasting, Mingling of Sexes, and the Veil
The Al-Saud Family and Their Repelling Others Away from the Sacred Kaaba Mosque
Quranic Terminology: Inherit
What the power of Islam is based on
Sharia Comes for the Archbishop
Fatwas: Part Twenty-Two
The Actual War on Christians
Unjustified and Justified Aggression
Quranic Terminology: Being (Un) Thankful to the Lord God (3)
Kaddafi and Ourselves: A Testimony for the Sake of History
With the current Egyptian revolution, the countdown for Wahhabism just
(They Wish That You Would Soften in Your Position, So They Would Soften Toward You) (The Holy Quran: 68: 9)
C-Reforming Muslims
Getting it straight; from God, to Arabic, to the Quran
My Journey to the Quran

I grew up an American Sunni Muslim and am now an admitted Quranist. The path that led me here was part intuitive and part intellectual. I can honestly say that I started off questioning the existence of God and the divinity of the Quran and all that I had been taught. Like most Muslims I was dissatisfied with the answers of Islamic orthodoxy to many questions, mostly I was confused by the inability of many to answer simple questions. To recall one I once asked my Madrassa teacher that if in Islam there were seven heavens what did that mean, seven samawaat or seven jannaat. There were many more encounters like this and I later found the answer in my own studies of the Classical Arabic Quran. For those who don't know the first means skies and the second means gardens and is used in the Quran many times to describe paradise. In Post-Quranic Arabic and local dialects it has come to mean paradise (although the correct word for this is firdawsu; an Old Arabic borrowing from Greek also found in the Quran). My journey led me to come to grips with the fact that scientifically and logically God is the most logical answer to our existence. It is illogical, taking all we know into consideration, that Chaos and lack of intelligence can beget the organized and inherently intelligent earth systems that surround us.

So I came to grips with a supreme, originating and intelligent creator. Whether there was only one or more than one creator was a matter solved by Occam’s razor like logic. I won’t say that I hadn’t heard of Occam’s razor but for me when it comes to whether there were multiple gods (I’ll use this term ‘god’ for now but explain it later) or just one, the answer came to the simple logic of not making superfluous assumptions. I could reasonably make an assumption and deduce that this force (or god if you will) is one but to assume that there were two, three or more and that they were all working synergistically and in cooperation is complicated, unwarranted and superfluous assumption. So where I had this logical dilemma of deducing the number of this force (knowing that the force exists) to assume that it was a combination of many forces is an excessive assumption with absolutely no evidence or indicators towards it at all. With that worked out I had deduced logically (and don’t let materialists try to convince you that deduction is somehow no longer a very thriving and useful part of science) that there was a supreme designer. And it was natural that I owed reverence to this designer who was obviously more wise and intelligent than I was or the most brilliant minds of humanity for that matter. How can we be more intelligent than what gave us our intelligence to use in the first place? I was never convinced by the atheist arguments that are mostly based on bad blood between individuals and co-opted religious systems (Islam included. But that will come later). Nor by those who would claim that all the intelligence in nature came from chaos. That is illogical to me and a forced belief in order to justify atheism. Then there is the, ‘why is there suffering in the world?’ argument. But believing in a supreme designer doesn’t inherently mean that that designer is a happy one who wishes no suffering on humanity. Pain, deterioration and death have their place in almost all life systems present on this earth. And although not likely, it is still possibly that non-nervous system beings feel pain through some other system that we have no clue about or don‘t understand yet. Whether that can be known or not is left to what the Supreme designer wants to let us in on, but death and deterioration again have their place in all life systems. That does not debunk intelligent design. It should rather encourage us  understand why


But then comes the Quran. How did I know that the Quran was from this intelligent designer which I could recognize should be my god. By the way a god is whatever we choose to revere as supreme and ultimate. That is why people can choose humans, animals or other natural phenomena or even ideas to be their gods. We chose our gods. I would say that the trend amongst our language mastering ancestors to give the supreme designer a name based on the fact that It (being neither masculiine nor feminine, despite the fact that 'he' is nueter in most languages and a carry over from Old English as it concerns why we still refer to God as a he. We do this with other beings we recognize as alive as well when we don't know the actual gender) is to be a god or the supreme or ultimate of gods was a positive step which led to the usages prevalent in many of our cultures today. Hence God with a capital G of respect in writing or without an indefinite or definite article when spoken, making it a name. Or the Arabic Allaahu which comes from al-ilaahu; meaning “the god“; which by evolution becomes a proper name being Allaahu, i.e. God. This quest of verifying the Quran led me into the realm of Arabic and specifically Classical Arabic. I, at first, didn’t know there was a difference and that “Arabic” as it is referred to now is actually a macro-language. Meaning that it is a language system that has many different sub-languages. The first task was realizing that the Arabic of the Quran and the Hadeeth is not the Arabic of most Arabs, although it is closest to that found on Radio, Television and most literary works. That was a lesson hard learned and it was so hard learned because in the course of this it became obvious that the people we know as Arabs today have one of the worst concepts of the language that they speak to be found on the planet. That concept has been confounded by a hodge-podge of Arab nationalism, Arabizing policies, Arabizing tendencies since the early Arab empires of Islam and the fact that on the ground, real-time language change has been occurring since the Arabs of the peninsula (who were speakers of the Classical Arabic found in the Quran and the Hadeeth) began to conquer and intermarry with non-Arabs and non-Arabic speaking peoples on a large scale (who outnumbered them) to be found in all of the Arab lands today besides Saudi Arabia (which wasn’t immune to the language change since it was the epicenter of the Arab-Muslim empires and the quickly arriving non-Arab Muslim world). Those who began to tribally affiliate themselves as Arabs because of Arab patrilineal ancestry (sometimes real and sometimes not) still called their broken up Arabic (many times learned from their non-Arab mothers) “Arabiyun,” i.e. Arabic. The same word used for the language of the Quran, Pre-Islamic poetry and the Hadeeths i.e. the language of the Arabs before they began to exit the peninsula in successful masse military and cultural campaigns. These broken Arabics became widespread due to the vast number of non-Arabs now obligated from the natural pressure of new, now Arab ruling empires, to speak Arabic.

These broken Arabics even spread into Arabia due to it being the mecca (no pun intended) of the Muslim and Arab-Muslim world. The earliest broken Arabics (most likely mixtures between Aramaic dialects with Greek, Latin and Persian influences, present in the areas fist conquered) molded into Arabic language trends becoming creoles, i.e. full fledged languages distinct from Classical Arabic/Old Arabic. These creoles (often referred to as Arabic Koines) spread and took their own slightly different forms in now Arabic speaking countries where different non-Arab peoples were to be found. And whereas these dialects are obviously related to the original “Arabiyun” they are obviously not the same as the Arabiyun of the Arab speech to be found in the Quran, pre-Islamic poetry and the Hadeeth (Both the Quran and the Hadeeth give examples of the Arab speech of their day). But understanding this from an Arab teacher who has not been formally trained in Old Arabic literature is like pulling teeth or squeezing blood from stones, because they think it is all just Arabic. Not to mention that what we hear on the radio and TV, which is almost identical to Classical Arabic is actually about 80 percent of what Classical Arabic is, in addition to new modernized words and meanings. And that remaining 20 percent of Classical Arabic is totally lost on educated Arabs who know the modern language known as MSA (Modern Standard Arabic) but have never been educated on the Classical Language which they have come in contact with but have not fully understood.

Taking all this into account when I study the Quran I can say that I have been fully satisfied with its answers to my questions about the Supreme Designer and its own veracity. So much so that I do believe the book is from God. I have also been satisfied with its message of forming a self-sufficient, voluntary, godly community that is willing and capable of defending itself, that takes on logic and reasoning as a virtue, as well as mercy, justice and freedom of choice about the disciplines we choose in life. I also agree with its commitment to the well-being, and quality of life of women while not putting men and women into competition with each other. It charges the men who believe in it is message with a mission to look out for the betterment of the women in their lives and other believing women. But the idea of forming a Quranist country and government, or empire, I do not see within the folds of the Quran and that is where my belief in the Quran starts to disapprove of and denounce many Islamic practices (many of them to be found in the rumors we call the Hadeeth) and even the name Islam itself.

The name Islam is not Quranic. Its interpretation as submission to God is just that, an interpretation and not a Classical Arabic definition of the word. The Quran uses the word, which in most cases means submission, in context to convey the idea of submission to God but for those who believe in the Quran to call themselves Muslims and their religion Islam actually has no Quranic basis. Only now after the unfolding of history has it taken on a worldly post-Quranic meaning of someone who follows the prophethood of Muhammad (God bless him) and believes in the divinity of the Quran. With all that said my journey to the Quran has been one of clearing up misconceptions and wrong preconceptions of God, Arabic, the Quran and Islam itself. Misconceptions and pre-conceptions that not only plague non-Muslims but those of us who grow up in Islam as well.


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