Profeten Muhammad (s) and the Quran (Encycl..Brittannica)

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Profeten Muhammad (s) and the Quran (Encycl..Brittannica)

Postby nur.nu » 30 Mar 2011, 20:46

Muhammad and the Qurʾān
From Encyclopedia Britannica

Those who do not consider Muhammad a prophet believe that the Qurʾān contains his words as compiled by his companions. For Muslims of all schools of law and theology, the Qurʾān is considered to be the word of God received by the Prophet and uttered verbatim by him to those around him. Moreover, there is a subtle and profound relationship between Muhammad and the Qurʾān. First, there are direct references in the Qurʾān to Muhammad, his nature, and his function. Notably, the Qurʾān asserts that he was a man and not a divine being, that he was the “seal of prophets” (khātam al-anbiyāʾ), that he was endowed with the most exalted character, and that God had placed him as the “goodly model” (uswah ḥasanah) for Muslims to follow. The Qurʾān is, in fact, the richest source for the understanding of Muhammad’s nature and mission.

Second, Muhammad was the person who best comprehended the meaning of the Qurʾān and was its first interpreter and commentator. Over the centuries all traditional Muslims have understood the Qurʾān through Muhammad’s interpretation, and whenever they recite the Qurʾān or seek to put its teachings into practice, they experience his presence. Islamic sages over the ages, in fact, have insisted that God granted to the Prophet alone the understanding of all levels of the Qurʾān’s meaning that humans could grasp and that those who later came to know something of the inner meaning of the Qurʾān were heirs to the knowledge given to Muhammad by God.

There is also something of the soul of Muhammad in the Qurʾān, which was, according to traditional beliefs, originally a sonorous revelation imprinted upon his heart and only later written down. If the text of the Qurʾān is comparable to words heard by the ear, the soul of the Prophet is like the air that carries the sound and allows it to be heard by humanity. According to a famous saying of the Prophet (known as ḥadīth al-thaqalayn), Muhammad said that, when he departed from the world, he would leave behind two precious gifts (thaqalayn): the Qurʾān and his family. Moreover, his wife ʿĀʾishah once asked Muhammad how he should be remembered after his death, and he replied, “By reciting the Qurʾān.” There is also a very subtle relationship between the Qurʾān and the Prophet that causes Muslims to feel his grace (barakah) whenever they read the Qurʾān, which they nevertheless understand to be the word of God and not of Muhammad or any other human being.


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