You are on page 1of 12

Muhammad (P)– A Mercy to The Worlds

Muhammad (P): The Unlettered Messenger


Written By Abidali Mohamedali based on a Lecture by Sheikh Mansour Leghaei

Carrying on from the discussion on the first revelation of the Prophet • The second suggests that he never read or wrote before his Mis-
(Al Fajr Vol 4, Issue 4 ), a secondary discussion is necessary to eluci- sion, but after his Mission he miraculously read and wrote. [Sh.
date the literacy of the H. Prophet (P) as the first word revealed to him Mofid, Sh. Tousi, Ibn Idris & Majlesi]
was ‘read’. The following paper will focus primarily on determining
whether the Prophet was illiterate (unable to read and write) as sug- • The third is that after his Mission he knew how to read and write,
gested by many or was unlettered (had the ability to read and write though writing and composing poems were forbidden for him.
but did not do so nor learn from any source). It is unanimously ac- Allamah al-Hilli is one of the proponents of this theory argues
cepted that the Prophet (P) before his appointment as Prophet was using the verse of the Quran that states “And We have not taught
neither reading nor writing, as no evidence exists to suggest to the him poetry, nor is it meet for him; it is nothing but a reminder and
contrary. The controversy is in regards to whether or not after the a plain Quran,” (36:69) meaning that it was forbidden to him to
revelation, he was reading and writing? There are several different write poetry. One is forbidden something only if he is able to do
opinions in this regard and is a very controversial issue as it has con- the action and not if he is unable, as the law would be redundant if
notations in regards to the fundamental beliefs with regards to the that were the case.
status of the Prophet (P).
• The final theory is that after his Mission he was reading but not
Theories of the Literacy of the Prophet (P) writing. [Some ahadith from Ahlul-Bait]

Before embarking on a study of the various opinions of scholars it is Proofs from the Quran
worthy to note that although ‘illiteracy’ has a very negative connota-
First proof:
tion, in regards to this discussion and it being ascribed to the Holy
Prophet (P) is in actual sense, a virtue. The reason for studying, going Being the first port of call for any issue, Allah in the Quran says
to school and having teachers is to acquire knowledge and therefore “Neither did you (Muhammad) read any book before it (this Quran),
reading and writing are tools for the acquisition of knowledge. It is nor did you write any
obvious that if one had access to the knowledge without the need of book with your right Muhammad (P): The Unlettered Mes-
the tools, he would not use them! In our day and age, in order to be hand. In that case, indeed, senger…….....………………………….. 1
learned we have to learn from teachers. The virtue of the Prophet is the followers of falsehood
that he had no might have Editorial………………………....…….. 2
teacher and doubted.” (29:48)
therefore the ‫ و ﻣﺎ ﮐﻨﺖ ﺗﺘﻠﻮا ﻣﻦ ﻗﺒﻠﻪ ﻣﻦ ﮐﺘﺎب و‬Where is Fatimah (AS)………………. 4
accusation of .‫ﻻﺗﺨﻄﻪ ﺑﻴﻤﻴﻨﮏ اذا ﻻرﺗﺎب اﻟﻤﺒﻄﻠﻮن‬
his fabricating The True Story of Jesus (AS)– Is Jesus
the religion is
nonexistent. The end of the ayah justi- God?! ……………... …………………….5
There are 4 fies the reason for him not
reading or writing. This Ziarah of the LADY OF LIGHT……...8
prevalent opin-
ions on the liter- was a refutation to an
accusation that was lev- Cartoon ………………………………… 9
acy of the
Prophet, none elled against him by the
infidels “And they say: Tafsir of Qur'an …..……..………….. 10
of which in any
shape or form degrade the status of the Prophet (P) due to the reasons The stories of the an-
cients-- he has got them Our Ulamaa ………………………..…12
described. It should be noted that conclusions cannot be made on
written-- so these are
whether the Prophet (P) was able to read or write only on whether he
read out to him morning
did or did not for if he did not it cannot be ascertained that he was not
and evening.” (25:5). All DISCLAIMER AND CAUTION
able to or was able but did not.
researchers on the history The articles published in this paper are
• The first suggests that he never read or wrote in his entire life. of Arabia and the Arabian not the views of Al-Fajr or any particu-
Most Shia scholars ascribe to this opinion such as Motahhari (in Peninsula have concluded lar Islamic centre but of the Author.
his book Payambar-e-Ummi), Sobhani (in his book Ma’alimun- that at the time of the Please handle with care as it contains
Nubuwwah Vol 3), and other Shi’a scholars including Seestani and Holy Prophet, there ex- names of Allah and His Prophet
so do most of the Sunnis. (Continued on page 2)
1
Editorial...
isted only 17 literate people amongst the • Negating any reading or writing would be
Salaam Alaykum! Quraysh, all of whom have even been men- a stronger evidence for the authenticity of
The month of the greatest Lady is upon tioned by name as they were well known. his Mission. Its enough as a proof of the
us, a lady who has reshaped our thinking Many orientalist writers have also concluded authenticity of the Mission of the Prophet
of the social impact of women forever, a that the Prophet (P) was indeed illiterate, writ- (P) that there would be no way that one
ers such as Thomas Carlyle in his book Hero who is completely illiterate ‘came up’ with
woman whose light and purity made her
and Hero Worship, Will Durant in his History of something as the Quran which challenges
the leader of the ladies of paradise. But Civilisations, Gustav Lobon in his History of all to this date!
where in lies her message? Brother Ali Arabs and Muslims, and numerous others in-
Samail succinctly asks the question and cluding most Muslim historians have reached • A tradesman does not have to be literate
the same conclusion. Although the ayah especially in those days such that although
gives women and men alike food for
quoted is clear the conclusions reached do not only 17 people were literate, the tribe was
thought. We must change. involved in international business (Surah
necessarily correlate and therefore a deeper
analysis of the ayah is required. Quraysh). Thus, there were many illiterate
The first step to this change is education, tradesmen in Quraysh just as today numer-
Problems: ous utterly illiterate rich businessmen exist!
not only of the principles of ones religion
but also of the secular world. Taking a 1. ‘Tatlu’ (read) driven from the word Other Problems
‘tilawah’ means reciting. A renowned phi-
short diversion from our normal routine lologist, Raghib in his book Al-Mufradaat 4. Sh. Tousi, Sh. Mufid and many others
of highlighting contemporary scholars specifies that the word tilawah is only used have commented that the word ‘Before it’
when referring to the reading or recitation in this ayah limits his illiteracy to prior to
and studying an ancient Muslim one, we
of scriptures. The word ‘kitabin’ or book his Mission. If Allah wanted to negate
must ask where we stand in the scheme writing and reading completely, He would
that is mentioned in this ayah is talking
of things. Why have we been so lethar- only about the scripture (the Bible, Torah not have negated specifically the time be-
gic and lazy in gaining knowledge and etc.). This could be true as this ayah is a fore his mission just as it says in ‫و ﻣﺎ ﻋﻠﻤﻨﺎﻩ‬
refutation of the accusation that the (36:69) ‫“ اﻟﺸﻌﺮ و ﻣﺎﻳﻨﺒﻐﯽ ﻟﻪ‬And We have not
exploring the blessings of our Lord? The taught him poetry, nor is it meet for him”
Prophet was using stories from previous
Christians, although having abandoned scripture and therefore Allah is denying where there is no specification of before or
logic in their theological arguments just that. It could therefore be concluded after the Mission of the Prophet (P) had
that the Prophet was not necessarily illiter- begun.
(Cover story 2) are still more active in
ate in general but only in regards to reading Answer:
propagating their falsehood, while the
the scripture.
Muslims, despite having the real truth • The infidels accused the Prophet (P) that
2. The Prophet (P) was a merchant so how
barely understand it themselves! It is as the stories were dictated to him every
could he be illiterate?
morning and afternoon. Thus, the message
if many Muslims have taken the worst of
3. For the proof of his claim it would be of the Ayah is to deny his literacy even be-
the Christians (blind belief) and the enough that he did not read the previous fore his Mission let alone now, when the
worst of their own (lethargy in propaga- Scriptures. We do not therefore need to accusation is being waged against him! This
tion) to make this lethal combination of a prove that the Prophet (P) was completely grammatical anomaly can be explained by
illiterate. another verse in the Quran, the one refer-
culture of apathy and indignation at the ring to wudhoo where Allah says “O you
success of the Jews and Christians!! Answer: who believe! when you rise up to prayer,
• The word ‘tatlu’ does not necessarily mean wash your faces and your hands as far as(
This issue also highlights the drawing ‫)اﻻ‬the elbows, and wipe your heads and
recitation of scriptures. It is undoubtedly
talents of Br. Ibrahim Dirani, a 14 yr old true that even philologists as renown as your feet to the ankles;” The word ‘ila’,
artist. The message portrayed speaks for Raghib, would have allowed their opinions indicates end of destination so literally the
and beliefs cloud their judgment even interpretation of this verse would be that
itself. This nurturing of young talent to you have to wash your hands from the fin-
though it might be unconscious. There is at
go into non traditional fields such as art least one other example of the use of the gertips to the elbow. The correct interpreta-
will make us a self subsisting society, word ‘tatlu’ which does not refer to the tion on the other hand is that the above
recitation of scripture See 2:102 interpretation is only true when ‘‫’اﻻ‬
something the Muslims crave.
coupled with’ ‫ ’ﻣﻦ‬but in this case ‘ila’ is not
.‫و اﺗﺒﻌﻮا ﻣﺎ ﺗﺘﻠﻮا اﻟﺸﻴﺎﻃﻴﻦ ﻋﻠﯽ ﻣﻠﮏ ﺳﻠﻴﻤﺎن‬ coupled with ‘min’ and therefore means
We hope you enjoy this issue and if you
(And they followed what the Shaitans chanted that when you wash your hands INCLUDE
have any contributions, suggestions or your elbows. Similarly when ‘min’ is used
of sorcery in the reign of Sulaiman,)
comments or would like to be included by itself such as in this ayah to say ‘before’,
in the mailing list to receive an electronic • The structure of the Ayah (indefinite nega- it does not indicate the beginning of the
tion “min Kitaabin”) includes any book. time as it is not coupled with ‘ila’, rather it
copy of the magazine or to request old
Therefore concluding that it was neither a includes the whole time.
issues, please do not hesitate to contact scripture nor any other book.
• His illiteracy in his entire life is more com-
us on abidalim@gmail.com
• The Ayah has negated both reading and patible with the reason given in the Ayah
Wassalaam writing, not only reading for if only reading as this would leave no room for doubt.
were negated, then the claim that the ayah
Abidali Mohamedali - Editor refers to the scriptures would perhaps be
justified. Since it includes writing, it is re- Second Proof
ferring to literacy in general.
The second proof is the use of the word ‘ummi’
Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 2
in the Quran. The decisive use of that word cally wrong and Ummul-Qora in the Quran Jibraeel asked the Prophet (P) to ‘read’ there
in Surah A’araaf verse 157-158 Allah says means the capital of an area. In the Arabic is no doubt or discussion whether this was
“Those who follow the Messenger-Prophet, language there exists two types of nouns, from memory or physical act of reading.
the Ummi, whom they find written down mudhaf and mudhaf ilayh meaning ‘added’ And considering the reply given by the
with them in the Taurat and the Injeel and ‘added to’. An example in English Prophet (P) according to the Shi’a narration
…” ‫اﻟﺬﻳﻦ ﻳﺘﺒﻌﻮن اﻟﻨﺒﯽ اﻻﻣﯽ اﻟﺬﯼ ﻳﺠﺪوﻧﻪ ﻣﮑﺘﻮﺑﺎ ﻋﻨﺪهﻢ ﻓﯽ‬ would be ‘door of the house’ whereby the is that he replied “what do I read”! Consid-
. ...‫ اﻟﺘﻮراة و اﻻﻧﺠﻴﻞ‬There are at least two door is added to the house making the door ering the narrations of the incident it is more
explanations of the word “.‫”اﻻﻣﯽ‬ mudhaf and the house is ‘added to’ or mud- possible that it means reciting a text not by
haf ilayh. In Arabic, if one wants to relate a heart.
The first meaning of it is ‘the unlettered’ or
person to another person or tribe, he must
rather one who was not reading or writing. A practical contemporary example of the
relate him to the mudhaf ilayh such as a
Ayatollah Mutahhari and Shaeed Sobhani possibility of this happening occurred at the
relative of Abdul Talib would be a ‘Taalibi’
have used the Quran to prove the meaning time of Ayatollah Burujardi (Al-Fajr Vol 4
not ‘Abee’. Similarly, members of Bani
of this word. Allah says in the Quran Issue 4), whereby a completely illiterate
Tameem are referred to as ‘Tameemi’.
farmer was inspired in a way that he could
(2:78) .ّ‫“ و ﻣﻨﻬﻢ اﻣﻴﻮن ﻻﻳﻌﻠﻤﻮن اﻟﮑﺘﺎب اﻻ اﻣﺎﻧﯽ‬And Therefore to relate someone to ‘Ummul
read the ayaat of the Quran only. To verify
there are among them unlettered who know Quraa’ the correct way to do that would be
his claim, he was brought to Ayatollah and
not the Book but only lies, and they do but to call that person a ‘Qurawee’ NOT
was tested by him. He was given a plain
conjecture.” This ayah refers to some Jews ‘Ummi’. In addition, it is known that some
Arabic text with intermingled verses of the
who do not know the Tawrat and are just of the Ummis were not from Makka!
Quran. This man could pick out these verses
following their desire. This ayah does not
Third Proof claiming that they had a ‘light’ although the
prove ‘illiteracy’ as one could be very edu-
words next to them had similar letters. If
cated and yet not ‘read’ the scripture. The The third proof of the status of the Prophet
this is possible for a mere farmer, it is incon-
second ayah used to derive a meaning for is found in Surah Bayyinah (98:2-3)
ceivable that the Prophet (P) would seek the
the word ‘ummi’ is in
assistance of anyone to verify a verse or ex-
‫و ﻗﻞ ﻟﻠﺬﻳﻦ اوﺗﻮا اﻟﮑﺘﺎب و اﻻﻣﻴﻴﻦ‬ plain a verse when shown it by a questioner!
(3:20) .‫“ ءاﺳﻠﻤﺘﻢ‬and say to those It is not a virtue for the Prophet not to be
who have been given the Book able to read the text he has received himself
and the unlearned people: Do at least! It can be concluded that it was a
you submit yourselves”. Al- requirement of the mission of the Prophet
most all mufasireen have con- (P) to be able to at least read the text he was
cluded that this ‘ummi’ refers selected to carry.
to the infidels of Quraysh.
Allah is asking the Prophet (P) Proofs from Hadith
to categorise the people into There are several authentic proofs from the
two groups, the people of the ahadith supporting the fourth of the four
book, who are literate and suggestions that the Prophet after his mis-
those who are not literate. sion was reading but not writing. It has been
Unfortunately, these two reported from Ibn Abi Omayr from Hisham
ayahs cannot be used as ac- bin Salem from Imam Sadiq (AS) who said:
ceptable proofs as they contra- “The Prophet was reading The Book, but
dict each other. The was not writing.” [Elalul-Sharaye’ P.53]. This
previous ayah says The Door to the Mosque of the Prophet (Madinah)
hadith is considered authentic.
that some of the Jews are unlettered because …“ .‫رﺳﻮل ﻣﻦ اﷲ ﻳﺘﻠﻮا ﺻﺤﻔﺎ ﻣﻄﻬﺮة ﻓﻴﻬﺎ ﮐﺘﺐ ﻗﻴﻤﺔ‬A
they do not know the book, while in the Aban from Hasan al-Sayqal: I heard Imam
messenger from Allah, reciting pure pages,
second ayah divides people into two, the Sadiq (AS) saying: “One of the favours of
wherein are all the right ordinances.” The
people of the book (literate) and the illiter- Allah upon His Prophet (P) was that he was
question that arises is whether the Prophet
ate? How is it then that the people of the Ummi; he did not write but was reading the
(P) was reading from the book or was he
book are literate yet illiterate?! One way in book.” [Ibid]. this hadith suggests an addi-
reciting from memory? The claim is that the
which reconciliation can be made is by sug- Prophet was reading from the text of the tional meaning for the word ‘ummi’.
gesting that the second ayah is general ayah Quran. But Ayatollah Mutahhari & Subhani Conclusion
whereby since the majority of the people of suggest on the contrary that ‘Reading’ could
the book were lettered, Allah has grouped According to the authentic ahadith of Ahlul-
also mean reciting by heart. The problem
them in one and vice versa. Bayt (a.s) and our best understanding of the
comes when an attempt is made to reconcile
Quran, the Prophet (P) was unlettered prior
The second meaning suggested for the word the first ayah quoted in surah 29 verse 48 to his Mission, but since his Mission began
Ummi is a person from Makkah, as Makkah earlier, where the interpretation suggested he was –by the Leave of Allah- reading the
was referred to as “Ummul Quraa” was that the Prophet (P) did not ‘read’ not
book (at least the Quran) but was not nor-
that he did not ‘recite from memory’! Just as
(6:92) .‫“ و ﻟﺘﻨﺬر ام اﻟﻘﺮﯼ و ﻣﻦ ﺣﻮﻟﻬﺎ‬that thou mally writing, meaning that if he had to, he
much as that ayah meant that the Prophet
mayest warn the mother of cities and all possibly would have. Allah knows best.
could not read from a text before his mis-
around her.” There exist some hadith from sion, this ayah could possibly mean that he
the Shi’a sources which suggest that Mak- could read the Quran from the text! This
kah was called “Ummul Quraa” and some possibility is made stronger by the fact that The Iranian poet Hafiz states,
hadith go to the extent of cursing those who the word ‘yatlu’ here and the word ‘tatlu’ My pen that never went to any school
accuse the Prophet (P) of being unlettered have the same meaning. In addition, when
although these hadith have been found not studying the first revelation given to the By the blink of eye became the teacher of all
to be authentic. This meaning is linguisti- Prophet (P) (Al-Fajr Issue 4 Volume 4), when the teachers of the world

Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 3


Where is Fatimah (AS)? by Ali Al Samail

The woman of today finds her place to be piece of herself, and covered it with a fragile, on the
the cover of lewd magazines and indecent glossy layer. Yet the gloss slowly rusts away, battle-
billboard advertisements. Almost every im- and she feels her worth depreciating with field,
age on a television screen shows the world age. She is depressed and anorexic, sleepless and
her semi-naked body and her cheaply- and moody. She is insecure and fragile, and
bought smile. Her dignity is constantly being she suffers from an identity crisis.
trampled and her pride is gradually being
Is she the mother whose role is to proffer
chipped away at. She has become a creature
kindness and love that nourishes her chil-
whose physique enables the wealthy to se-
dren's growth? Or is she a scientist or an
duce the public into buying their products.
artist whose ambition and zeal allow her to
She has been watered down to nothing but a
open new doors of knowledge? Is she a wife
suggestive pose and a few hollow and hon-
who keeps together a home and a family
eyed words.
with her patience and sacrifice, or is she un-
washes the blood off the sword of her hus-
In her quest for freedom she lost her way, attached and independent, because her
band? Where is the woman who asked for
and was cheated into believing that freedom strength leaves her needless of others? Is it
no dowry besides the right to help the needy
lay in expressing her physical rather than her ability as an independent human being
on the day when they would most need
spiritual beauty. She was encouraged to that she must develop and express, or her
help? Where is the woman whose house
spend her time and energy in perfecting her ability as an irreplaceable member of the
contained no furniture that was not made of
figure and showing it to the world, and the family unit?
the soil of the earth, and whose hands with-
only exercise given to her intelligence was
She tries to solve these questions as she ered and bled from her daily duties, and yet
the difficult decision of which dress to buy,
grows from childhood to womanhood, but her face would wash all worry and anxiety
which cosmetic product to use or which col-
the role models and expectations that have from the heart of her husband? Where is the
our to dye her hair. A society seething with
been set for her are dangerous. Nowhere is woman who would not utter a word of com-
greed and violence did not wish that her
there the compassion of a mother and a wife, plaint even when her house had not lighted
fountains of kindness and her unique intelli-
nowhere the intelligence and intuition of a a cooking-fire for three days, and who even
gence should flourish. It did not wish that
scientist or an artist. Nowhere is there the then would pray for her neighbour before
her spirit of sacrifice and empathy should
love and empathy that leads to sacrifice, she prayed for herself? Where is the woman
come to the fore and temper its blind ambi-
nowhere the strength that leads to fighting who would feed the poor and needy with
tion for wealth and power.
for justice. There is only a short skirt and a her last morsel of food, where is the woman
She managed to free herself from her old tight shirt, there is only lingerie and swim- who would give up her wedding dress on
chains only to fall into new and more subtle wear, there is only bare skin and make-up. the night before her wedding? Where is the
ones, and the bruises these new chains have There is only an imaginary, concocted figure woman who learnt the greatest sciences of
inflicted upon her are slowly beginning to and a fake sickly-sweet persona that has no the time, and taught them to the women
hurt. She sees her perfect body in magazines substance. around her? Where is the woman who raised
and television screens so often that she can two princely sons and two noble daughters,
Where is the woman who hides her infinite and prepared them for lives of sacrifice and
no longer leave her house without an hour of
beauty even from a blind man? Where is the hardship? Where is the woman who put
forethought about her attire, nor can she eat
girl who sees her father being abused and principles and truth before herself and her
a simple meal without feelings of guilt and
pelted with rubbish, and rushes to clean him needs? Where is the woman who veiled her-
failure. She can no longer go to work in re-
with her small hands and cry over him? self and appeared before the government of
spectable clothes, but must clad herself in a
Where is the girl who has to watch her the day and questioned their oppression?
way that will satisfy the lustful masculine
mother die as a child, but has the strength to Where is the woman who crushed their ar-
eye. Her words no longer have any value on
become “her father's mother”? Where is the guments with her knowledge and reasoning,
their own, and are heard only through the
woman who nurses the wounds of her father and melted their hearts with her words and
filter of her sexuality. She has made a show-
mannerisms? Where is the woman whose
eloquence and defiance awoke the public
from their apathy? Where is the woman who
gave her happiness, her love, her anger, her
tears, her life and her death for the sake of
Truth?
Where is the woman whose glorification of
Allah is worth two pilgrimages, and whose
intercession is most loved by the Almighty?
Where is the woman whose pleasure is the
Pleasure of the All-Merciful, and whose an-
ger is the Anger of the All-Powerful? Where
is the woman who was created for the here-
after, and who stood above this world, en-
gaging in it, yet purified from all its imper-
fections, and victorious over all its tempta-
tions? Where is the perfect mother, where is
the perfect wife, where is the perfect daugh-
ter? Where is Fatima (AS)?

Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 4


The True Story of Jesus (AS)
Written by Sheikh Mansour Leghaei
Is Jesus God?! Let Us Reason Together
MONOTHEISM; THE COMMON WORD Father + one person, God the son + one per- of God, light of light, true God of true God, be-
son, God the Holy Spirit= one person, God gotten no make, of the same substance with the
Monotheism and believing in one unique
the what? And by the way this is English not Father.”
God is the core of the teachings of all divine
gibberish! Most churches baptize infants into
prophets. In the Old Testament God in- Although the Creed was signed, the matter
the Trinity and thus Christians from their
structed Moses (AS) to proclaim: “Hear, O was still far from settled. Arius and the new
very childhood are told to believe in the
Israel: The Lord our God is one bishop of Alexandria, a man called Athana-
deity of Jesus, though on faith alone.
Lord.” [Deut. 6:4] sius, began arguing over the matter. By the
It is due to this conviction that Christians end of the 4th century, under the leadership
In the New Testament also, when a man
consider Muslims ignorant- at best- about of Basil of Caesarea, Gregory of Nyssa, and
asked Jesus what would be the chief Com-
the personality of Jesus when they hear that Gregory of Nazianzus (the Cappadocian
mandment of the Commandments, he said:
Muslims respect Jesus “(only) as a prophet Fathers), the doctrine of the Trinity at the
“the chief one is, ‘Hear O Israel: the Lord our
and the messenger of God”! Consequently, council of Chalcedon took substantially the
God is one Lord.” [Mark 12:29]
their preconceived ideas make communica- form it has maintained ever since.
Monotheism is the basis of all the teachings tion difficult. Often the thing said is not the
Since then, brutal punishments, violent per-
in the Final Testament (the holy Quran). The thing heard!
secution and being labeled as heretics was
Chapter of ‘Purity’ (112) of the holy Quran is
THE HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF TRINITY the only destiny of the Unitarians. All their
the article of monotheism in the most com-
books were burnt and by 600 A.D., they had
prehensive and explicit way. Muslims are When and how did the dogma of the Trinity
basically ceased to exit.
strongly recommended to recite it at least emerge? Did Jesus ever proclaim to be God
once in their daily Prayers. The Chapter or son of God? Did he ever call for the Trin- Today some critical Christian theologians
states: ity? Nay. Historically, the original Christians such as John Hick in his book ‘The Myth of
of the first three centuries did not know of God Incarnate’ find the roots of the Trinity in
“In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious,
the Trinity. ancient pagan religions. Hick finds amazing
the Most Merciful. Say: He is Allah, the
similarities between the Buddhist doctrine of
Unique. Allah is the Self-Sufficient Master Some early Christian sects who did exist
Trikaya (the three body doctrine) and the
Whom all creatures need. He begets not, nor before the Roman Catholic, such as the Ebio-
Trinity. Similarly, there are many similarities
was He begotten. And there is none co-equal nite and Essences in the first century were
between the Trinity and the Hindu doctrine
(or partner) to Him, He is Unique.” Unitarians and knew no Trinity and did not
of Trimurti (Sanskrit: Three Forms) consist-
Of all the different distortions which have worship Jesus. It is unanimously accepted
ing a triad of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. It
occurred in Christianity, none is as horrible that the Nicean Conference in 325 AD called is due to these similarities that some histori-
as the blasphemous claim of the deity of by the order of the Roman Emperor, Con-
ans assumed that Jesus must have spent
Jesus and the dogma of the Trinity. The stantine the Great, over a controversy about
some time in India during his missing years!
vague and mysterious dogma of Trinity has the personality of Jesus, led eventually to the There is however, no historical proof for this
become the central doctrine of most of the acceptance of Trinity. The Trinity dogma,
assumption. Moreover, the claim of the ad-
Christian sects of today. Although Chris- first referred to by St. Augustine (415CE),
aptation of a pagan doctrine by a Messenger
tians do not claim they believe in three gods however came about much later than the of God i.e. Jesus (a.s) is the most irrational
and hence find it offensive to be called Council of Nicea, and was accepted as the
proposition.
‘polytheists’, their perverted doctrine of the Athanasian Creed in the fifth century.
Trinity has led them astray from the true TRINITARIAN CHRISTIANS VERSES UNITARI-
path of monotheism. ANS

In Christian theology there is a branch of In 318 C.E. a controversy over the matter of
study called ‘Christology’ which is con- the nature of Jesus blew up between church
cerned with the person and attributes and men from Alexandria- Arius, the deacon and
deeds of Jesus. In Christology, Christians are Alexander his bishop. In order to safeguard
taught to believe in Jesus as coexistent and the unity of his kingdom, the Emperor Con-
coequal with God who descended from his stantine stepped into the fray and called for
high pre-existent station as a God when he the first ecumenical council in church history
came to earth to die for mankind’s sins. “He in order to settle the matter once and for all.
was Jehovah- they claim- came to earth in a According to Encarta Encyclopaedia, of the
physical body as the Only Begotten of the 1800 bishops in the Rome Empire, 318 at-
Father in the flesh.” tended the Council in 325 C.E. in Nicea (now
Iznik, Turkey). The irony is that Christ’s
The deity of Jesus is explained through the
deity was ratified over the objections of most
mysterious dogma of Trinity. The doctrine
of the Christian bishops who had been gath-
of the Trinity states that God is the union of
ered there from all over the world. Never-
three divine persons- the Father, the Son and
theless, the Emperor concluded the council
the Holy Spirit- in one divine being. Thus,
with a faith that he dictated in the Council.
they say there is one God who exists in three
The Nicean Creed according to Catholic En-
persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Ac-
cyclopaedia reads: Ecumenical Council of Nicea members presenting
cording to Christians the Father is God, the
Son (Jesus) is God and the Holy Spirit is God “We believe in one God; the Father Almighty, their version of the bible (http://www.goarch.org/
although the Father is not the Son and nei- en/resources/clipart/icondetail.asp?
Maker of all things visible and invisible; and our
ther of them is the Holy Spirit. Here is the Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten of the Fa- 55&c=Other&r=Ecumenical_Synod)
formula of the Trinity: One person, God, the ther, that is, of the substance of the Father, God
Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 5
TRINITY ON THE SCALE OF RATIONALITY The fact is the dogma of the Trinity violates from them is an abstractive concept. ‘Matter’
the basic laws of rationality and hence it doesn’t have a real existence. It is only a
Common sense and the faculty of mind is
doesn’t make sense. common name we have made for gas, liquid
one of the most important blessings of God
and solid. These three matters are separate
upon mankind. Enjoying this blessing, man The Trinity violates the law of
can be held responsible for his deeds. Ration- contradiction; a law that is the
ality is the only common platform among core of human logic. The law
human beings irrespective of their religious of contradiction means that
or cultural background. Unless people are two antithetical propositions
able to relate in a rational manner with each cannot both be true at the same
other, no communication can be accom- time and in the same sense. X cannot be non-
entities. The same fallacy applies to space
plished between them. X. A thing cannot be and not be simultane-
and time. All generic concepts are like that.
ously. All logic depends on this simple prin-
Prophet Isaiah; was one of the Hebrew For instance, the concept of ‘human being’
ciple. Rational thought and meaningful dis-
prophets. His book in the Old Testament is a applies to you and me and every human
course demand it. To deny it is to deny all
historical reference for Christians to prove being. Yet, ‘human being’ has only a mental
truth in one fell swoop.
the coming of the Messiah. According to that existence not external existence. What exists
book, God reveals to Isaiah to tell his people: THE TRINITY VIOLATES THE LAW OF CON- in the external reality are Tom, Dick and
“Come now, and let us reason to- TRADICTION Harry, etc.
gether.” [Isaiah 1:18] Christians are being
baptized in the name of the Trinity, and yet • God is physical and God is not physical! The application of these examples is that
No doubt, the God that all monotheists there is Son, Father, and Holy Ghost in the
they are always told to believe in the Trinity
believe in is not physical, or else he external reality and the name God or God-
by faith alone. If any Christian dares ques-
would be limited. Nevertheless, Trinity is head is an abstractive concept driven from
tion the mysterious dogma of Trinity, his
explained as ‘God reincarnate in Jesus’. those three realities. The conclusion is that
priest immediately tells him that this doc-
Jesus was born of Mary. He had body ‘God’ doesn’t have a real existence! “See
trine is a bit difficult to grasp and it is be-
and flesh. He was eating and drinking. what examples do they apply to you, so they
yond the common understanding! Thus, they
Jesus was physical. Thus, the result of the have gone astray, and they cannot find a
never really allow their minds to ponder
dogma of the Trinity is that God is physi- (Right) Path.” (25:9)
upon it. I would like to invite my Christian
brethren to put aside the stereotypical teach- cal and God is not physical! DID JESUS EVER CLAIM TO BE GOD?!
ings of the church and for God’s sake for • God is not begotten and God is begotten! The holy
once try to think independently! As God said All monotheists believe that God is not Quran states
to Isaiah, “come now, let us reason together.” begotten. Christians also believe that that on the
There are two meanings for rationality when God; the Father is not begotten. On the Day of Judg-
concepts like Trinity are treated: One is to other hand, the Trinity claims that Jesus ment on the
say that the dogma of Trinity is irrational is the begotten son of God and he is God! trial of
because it violates some basic laws of ration- Thus, God is begotten and is not begot- Christians,
ality. The second meaning is to say it doesn’t ten. Allah
make sense in that it doesn’t appeal to any will ask
• God dies and God doesn’t die! God that
sensory perception, that it is hard to concep- Jesus
all monotheists- including Christians as
tualize the Trinity because it cannot be pic- if
they claim- believe in is Ever-Living. God
tured in the mind.
does not die, not even for a micro-second.
If the Trinity doesn’t make sense in the first Jesus is born and hence they celebrate
meaning, then it is irrational, but if it is in the Christmas. All Christians believe Jesus
second meaning, then it is all right? died on the cross. Although he was resur-
rected again, he died. Thus, God dies he had ever
Christians argue that the Trinity doesn’t and God doesn’t die. Isn’t this violation asked people to either wor-
make sense in the second meaning of it and of a law of contradiction? ship him or his mother? The
hence it is like many other religious concepts
purpose of this rhetorical ques-
that we can’t picture, such as ‘God’, ‘Angels’, It is for this reason that Athanasius, the
tion is for the Christians to hear
etc. The same is true with abstractive con- bishop who formulated this doctrine, con-
from Jesus that he had never had
cepts such as love, evil, etc. To them it fessed that the more he wrote on the matter,
such a blasphemous claim. “And when Allah
should come as no surprise that trying to the less capable he was of clearly expressing
will say: O Jesus son of Mary! Did you say
understand the Divine Nature of God in our his thoughts regarding it.
unto men: Worship me and my mother as
limited human perspective is impossible. We two gods besides Allah? He will say: Glory
FALLACIOUS EXAMPLES FOR TRINITY
can only know, what He has revealed to us be to You! It was not for me to say what I
about His nature, through the Bible. The In their efforts to explain the dogma of Trin- had no right to say, Had it said such a thing,
bottom line is that we must have faith in the ity, Christians refer us to examples that they You would surely have known it. You know
Trinity. Thus, they claim, the Trinity is in- call ‘the Trinities in nature’. For instance, what is in my inner-self though I do not
comprehensible. The Athanasian Creed read: they say the universe consists of three ele- know what is in Yours; truly, You only You,
“The Father incomprehensible, the Son incompre- ments: Time, Space, and Matter. Each of are the All-Knower of all that is hid-
hensible, the Holy Ghost incomprehensible… not these is comprised of three ‘components’. den.” [5:116]
three incomprehensible…but… one incomprehen-
Christians assume the anti-Trinitarians don’t Nowhere even in the present gospels has
sible.”
recognize number ‘3’ and hence endeavor to Jesus ever explicitly claimed to be God. The
One may add: ‘and an incomprehensible present examples of three sided things. The Encyclopedia Britannica states: "Neither the
argument’! fallacy of these examples is that in the exter- word Trinity, nor the explicit doctrine as such,
nal real world, there is only gas, solid and appears in the New Testament, nor did Jesus and
liquid. The concept of ‘matter’ that we draw his followers intend to contradict the Shema in
Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 6
the Old Testament: Hear, O Israel: The Lord more on the Bible than anything else. To the usage of this expression not to leave any
our God is one Lord. (Deut. 6:4)”. them, to understand the divine nature of room for misinterpretation.
God is beyond the human limited perspec-
The worship of God was always focal in Je- JESUS DID NOT HAVE THE ATTRIBUTES OF
tive and hence we can only know “what He
sus’ life. For instance, when his disciples GOD
has revealed to us about His nature through the
asked him to teach them how to pray (Luke
Bible”. Another way to examine the deity of Jesus is
11:1-2) he taught them to pray to God; the
to examine whether he enjoys the attributes
Father, not to himself. Notice that the words First of all, you must note that logically prov-
of God!
“Father! Grant us” indicate that Jesus in- ing the deity of Jesus from the Bible falls into
cluded himself among the creation of God, the fallacy of ‘begging the question’. Begging 1. God is Omniscient
acknowledging a high authority; ‘God’ over the question or circle reasoning is a fallacy in
One of the attributes of the Almighty God is
all of them. Similarly, according to John, Je- which the premises include the claim that the
that He is Omniscient, i.e. He is All Know-
sus said to Mary Magdalene: “I am going to conclusion is true or assume that the conclu-
ing. When Jesus was asked about the time of
ascend to my father and your father, to my sion is true. Imagine you go for a job inter-
the Hour (the Day of Judgment) he said:
God and your God.” [John 20:17] view and the interviewer asks for a refer-
“About the exact date and hour no one
ence. You mention a name and if he asks
The holy Quran quoting from Jesus states: knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the
how he would know if he is trustworthy,
“But the Messiah (Jesus) said: O Children of Son, but only the Father.”[Mark13:32]
you say: Oh I vouch for him!
Israel! Worship Allah, my Lord and your
In an attempt to prove the omniscience of
Lord.” [5:72] Christians –quoting from the Bible- claim
Jesus, Christians quote from the Gospel of
that Jesus is the only begotten son of God.
Imam Redha (AS); the 8th Imam of Ahlul- John in which it is narrated from the disci-
John in his Gospel says: “For God so loved
Bayt (AS) in his debate with one of the ples to have said to Jesus: “Now we know
the world that he gave his only-begotten
archbishops of his time named ‘al-Jatheliq’ that you know everything and do not need
Son…” [John 3:16]
said: “Everything apparently about Jesus anyone to tell you. From this we believe that
is good except his worshipping? Al-Jatheliq The above quotation is one of the Biblical you came from God.” [John 16:30]
whilst objecting to that said: “Rather he was sources of Christians’ claim for divinity of
Obviously the above statement doesn’t mean
the most Jesus.
more than the fact that Jesus was a Messen-
worshipping
Let’s read the Bible and see whether Jesus ger of God and his knowledge, like all other
person.”
was the only begotten son of God. prophets, is from God and by revelation not
Imam
by learning from other human beings. Thus,
Redha (a.s) 1. David; a begotten son of God
when his disciples say that he knows every-
who had
Psalms of Prophet David (or as Christians thing, they don’t mean he is omniscient.
this con-
fession refer to him; King David) is one of the books
2. God is Omnipotent
from of the Old Testament. Although the Psalms
the are the product of various authors, Peter and Another divine attribute is that God is Om-
priest John (Acts 4:25) ascribe the second Psalm to nipotent and the Almighty. God is needless
David. In the second Psalm we read: “I will but all other than Him are in need of Him.
declare the decree: the Lord has said unto me, Thus, it is not possible for God to seek any-
you my Son; this day have I begotten one’s help. According to Matthew and Mark
you.” [Psalms 2:7] the last words of Jesus on the cross were:
“My God, My God, why have You forsaken
2. Israel; the begotten son of God
Me?” Moreover, Jesus is reported by John to
Israel was another name for Prophet Jacob. have said: “I can do nothing independ-
In the book of Exodus we read: “And you ently.” [John 5:30]
shall say unto Pharaoh, thus said the Lord,
In conclusion, Jesus never claimed to be God.
Israel is my son, even my firstborn.” [Ex.
The dogma of Trinity is irrational and vio-
4:22]
lates the basic law of contradiction. Jesus
3. Adam was the son of God does not enjoy the attributes of God and
there are more monotheistic interpretations
replied to him: “Then who Luke mentioning the linage of Jesus says:
for the ambiguous statements of the Bible.
was he worshipping? Him- “Jesus being …the son of Joseph, the son of
Overall, if still some of the authors of the
self or another Being?!” the priest was Heli, …which was the son of Adam, who
Bible such as John refer to Jesus as God, they
dumb-founded. was the son of God.” [KJV]
have definitely been wrong and must be
According to Mark, Jesus even did not allow As you can see according to the Bible, Jesus influenced by the pagan Romans. The best
himself to be called ‘good’ let alone ‘God’. was not the only begotten son of God. The and the most accurate title for Jesus is what
Mark narrates that as Jesus was setting out expression of son of God, if I were to justify he introduced himself with, i.e. A Messenger
on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before it, at best would mean the one who is spiritu- of God:
him, and asked him: “Good teacher. What ally and passionately close to God and is
“Jesus replied to them: My teaching is not
must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus said chosen by Him; the Almighty. In this sense,
to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is mine but His who sent me.” [John 7:16]
all the Prophets are the sons of God. Any one
good but God alone.” [Mark 10:17-18] who has studied the Bible knows that Jesus DEITY OF JESUS ON THE SCALE OF THE HOLY
in many instances spoke in figures of speech. QURAN
DEITY OF JESUS ON THE SCALE OF THE BIBLE
Then if these quotations about his 'sonship'
I would like to conclude this chapter with
We must however say that Christians do are correct, why couldn’t he have said it as a
the explicit statements from the Final Testa-
quote various passages, mostly ambiguous, figure of speech?!
ment, i.e. the holy Quran; about Jesus son of
from the Bible to enforce belief in the deity of
The holy Quran, however, has abandoned Mary (may the peace and mercy of God be
Jesus. In fact, they base the dogma of Trinity

Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 7


upon him). Surely, this is the true statement from dust, then said to him: “Be”- and he statement of truth, about which they dis-
about Jesus which is far from the blasphe- was.” [3:59] pute.” [Chapter of Mary 19:34]
mous accusations of Christians as well as the
3. “The Messiah, son of Mary, was no more EVERLASTING DIVISION
Jews about the personality of this great
than a Messenger; many were the Messen-
prophet. The theological deviation in Christianity
gers that passed away before him. His
mother was righteous. They both used to caused the Christian community to acquire
1. “O people of the Scripture! Do not exceed
eat food. Look how We make the proofs the largest number of divisions of any of the
the limits in your religion, nor say of Al-
clear to them; yet look how they are de- known religions. According to David Barrett
lah aught but the truth. The Messiah, son
luded away (from the truth).” [5:75] et al, editor of the ‘World Christian Encyclo-
of Mary was (no more than) a Messenger
pedia’ 3400 Christian groups have been iden-
of Allah and His Word, which He be- 4. “The Christians say: Messiah is the son of tified in the world.
stowed on Mary, and a spirit from Allah. Allah. That is their saying with their
So believe in Allah and His Messengers. mouths, resembling the saying of those The holy Quran with reference to this fraction
Say not three (Trinity). Cease! It is better who disbelieved aforetime.” [9:31] and the purpose of it states; “And from those
for you. For Allah is One God, glory be to who called themselves Christians We took
Him above having a son. To Him belongs 5. “Surely they have disbelieved who say: their covenant, but they have abandoned a
all that is in the heavens and all that is in God is Messiah, son of Mary. But Mes- good part of the Message that was sent to
the earth.” [4:171] siah said: O Children of Israel! Worship them. So We planted amongst them enmity
my Lord and your Lord.” [5:72] and hatred till the Day of Resurrection; and
2. “Verily, the likeness of Jesus before Allah
is the likeness of Adam. He created him 6. “Such is Jesus, son of Mary. (This is) the Allah will inform them of what they used to
do.” [5:14]

Ziarah of the LADY OF LIGHT (Mafatih-ul-jinaan)


"My father said to me: `He who prays on your behalf, Allah, Exalted and Peace be upon you O daughter of the best of Allah's creatures;
Glorified is He, shall forgive him and make him join me wherever I may be in
Peace be upon you O daughter of the best of Allah's prophets, mes-
Paradise."
In the name of Allah, Most Beneficent, Most Gracious sengers and angels;

Peace be upon Muhammad and his Progeny Peace be upon you O daughter of him who is the best of all creatures;

O you who were tried; Allah Who Created you, tried you before He Peace be upon you O wife of the friend of Allah and the best of crea-
Created your (flesh); He found you patient with that which He tried tures after the Messenger of Allah;
you with. We claim that we are your followers, believing in you, and Peace be upon you O Mother of Al-Hassan and Al-Hussain, who are
(believing and) bearing with everything that has been brought unto us the masters of the youth of Paradise;
by your father (S) and that which his successor brought unto us.
Therefore, we beg you (now that we believe) to make us join both of Peace be upon you the truth--teller (devoted one) and martyr;
them so that we may rejoice at being purified for following you. Peace be upon you O gratified and accepted one; Peace be upon you
Peace be upon you O daughter of the Messenger of Allah; O well--mannered and chaste one;

Peace be upon you O daughter of the Prophet of Allah; Peace be upon you O human huri; Peace be upon you O pious and
pure one;
Peace be upon you O daughter of the beloved of Allah;
Peace be upon you who is spoken to by angels, and who is knowl-
Peace be upon you O daughter of the friend of Allah; edgeable; Peace be upon you O oppressed and usurped one;
Peace be upon you O daughter of the sincere friend of Allah; Peace be upon you O repressed and defeated one;
Peace be upon you O daughter of the trusted (Messenger) of Allah; Peace be upon you O Fatima, daughter of Allah's Messenger; and may
the blessings and mercy of Allah be upon you and upon
your soul and body;
By: Ibraheem Dirani
I bear witness that you have perished while fully knowing
your Lord. (I also bear witness) that he who gladdens you,
gladdens the Messenger of Allah (S) he who deserts you,
deserts the Messenger of Allah (S) he who harms you,
harms the Messenger of Allah (S) he who bestows you
(with a favour), bestows (a favour) upon the Messenger of
Allah (S) and he who deprive you, deprives the Messenger
of Allah (S) (This is) because you are "part of him and his
spirit which lies in his sides." Allah, His Messengers and
His Apostles are my witnesses that I accept him whom you
accept, resent him who you resent; I exonerate myself to
Allah from him who you exonerate yourself to Allah from,
him who you be friend, hold as my enemy those who you
hold (as your enemies), and dislike him who you dislike.
Allah is the best Witness, the best-anticipated One, best Re-
warder, and most Bountiful.

Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 8


Trials for Tranquility by Ali Al Samail

From the time that a human being leaves the Yet he is a willing and submissive victim, fulfils his potential, he solves his mystery,
innocence of childhood, and begins the jour- because he sees this as the solution to his and becomes who he is. First, though, he
ney towards what is called adulthood he is mystery. He longs to be defined, because that must break the boundaries and limits im-
faced with a complex and deep mystery. He will calm the storm raging within himself, it posed on him, he must take charge of the
finds within himself a thousand discon- will stop the bitter conflict that keeps him investigation and look deep within himself.
nected and incomplete clues that promise awake at night and presents him with diffi- He must reject all the excuses and justifica-
somehow to bring him answers. He finds a cult questions that he cannot find answers tions prepared by the powers of simplifica-
storm of conflicting pieces of evidence; he to. Even better, to be defined attaches him to tion He must reflect on himself and give it a
finds others intruding on his investigation, others who have been similarly defined. thorough examination, he must step outside
pulling him this way and that way, and leav- Now he belongs, he has a set of rules and of himself and analyse it, and then he will
ing him torn and confused. He becomes rest- conventions to follow, a set of cheaply ac- see all the answers.
less, because the mystery is himself, and un- quired ideas to defend with exhausted cli-
To do this, he must not be afraid to doubt.
til he finds himself he will find no peace. chés and meaningless gestures. Now he has
Doubt takes man from the plastic comforts of
something to gather for, something to scream
Society has no time to know him, nor is it conformity and places him in a vacant and
about in a group buzzing with the effects of
interested in knowing him, it simply builds a lonely wilderness. Some lose hope and re-
adrenaline (or alcohol). It is a thin thread that
set of models: boxes into which a main forever to rot in this wilderness, but
keeps them all together, but he holds on,
'personality', a cliché or a type is squeezed. It many are driven towards knowledge and
even though it burns his hands.
simplifies things for him, it takes one or two then certainty by the fear that they may be
of the thousand clues and exaggerates them; All the while, though, there is a quiet whis- stuck here, walking in circles forever. But
completely ignoring the others. It wants to per from some dark corner that tells him that these new certainties bring with them new
stop this investigation, and attempts to stop he is only fooling himself. He couldn't care and more subtle doubts, and these too have
independent thought altogether. These per- less about what he shouts about at these ex- to be fought. Slowly, though, the pieces come
fect templates have already been made, he aggerated gatherings, his friends are fake, together and man begins to find himself. The
needs simply to choose one and he will be- the ideas are not his and will never become talents blossom because now they have a
come comfortable. his- and his hair and clothes are ugly. He purpose and direction, and the weaknesses
ignores this irritating whisper and tries to wither away, because there is no longer any-
It wants him to be the place in which he lives,
drown it out by telling himself bigger lies, by thing for them to feed on. Man becomes
it wants him to be the colour of his skin or the
trying to prove to himself in more extreme calm, certain, inspired.
amount of money he earns, or what he
ways that this is his true definition. The
wears, what he drinks, what he eats, what he The certainties he found have led him to the
whisper only grows louder though, until it
listens to and even how he chooses to cut his greatest certainty- the greatest Truth. They
becomes a scream. His self begins to accuse
hair. It wants him to forget the vast potential have led him to know his source, and his
and chide him.1 His intelligence can no
inside him and to take on the external labels destination, they have led him to know what
longer bear the insults it is receiving, and his
of this world as his identity. It wants him to he is and why he is. He is tranquil now, and
soul can no longer survive the fire he is ex-
be the guinea pig for others' experiences with he fights his new battles equipped with a
posing it to. He wakes up to himself, and
life, a recycling bin for others' ideas. It de- foundation that is immune from destruction.
either tells himself a new cruel lie whose
fines him artificially, it limits him, imprisons He is on a path towards an Absolute and
light will fade sooner than the last, or he goes
him and controls him. As long as he knows Perfect destination. Every step on this path is
to search for something true, something real.
the box into which he fits, he has been proc- a trial that teaches him something new about
essed, completed and trapped. himself, and it is this new-found knowledge
He has dismantled himself and thrown that carries him through the next and more
pieces of it in dark corners to rust. He has difficult trial. These trials are necessary ob-
taken other pieces and exaggerated them, stacles if he is to know himself and know his
tried to carve them so that they will fit into aim. They are the stimuli that bring together
these ready-made boxes that are waiting, but all those disconnected clues and tie them
the pain has become intolerable. These pieces together, they are the field on which the mys-
were not made to be dismantled and ma- tery is solved. This is where man comes to
nipulated, they were meant to remain to- master his flaws and his strengths, this is
gether, forming a smooth and flowing whole; where he begins to think, where he achieves
all of it heading in one direction. They were wisdom, until slowly his self becomes com-
meant to create a beautiful unison and inter- pletely certain, and returns from whence it
act with one another. The flaws and weak- came.2
nesses of the personality were meant to be
fought and overcome, not exaggerated and
boasted of as 'beautiful imperfections'. The 1-Surah Al-Qiyamah, Verse 2
strengths and talents were meant to be har-
nessed and developed, they were meant to [75:2]”Nay! I swear by the self-accusing
be fed by the fight against the flaws, not soul.”
eaten away by them mercilessly. 2-Surah Al-Fajr, Verse 27-28
He was given existence and then given a [89:27]”O soul that art at rest!
potential to fulfil. The flaws and strengths
were all gifts, the former to be fought and [89:28] Return unto thy Lord, content in His
controlled, the latter to be harnessed and good pleasure!”
channelled. This is his ration, and when he

Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 9


Surah Fath - Verses 18-25 Presented by Sh. Mansour Leghaei written by Abidali Mohamedali

Most of the ayaat of Surah Al-Fath were tremendous difference in the outlook one 21- And others which you have not yet been
revealed to the H. Prophet (P) at the incident has. Allah then continues: able to achieve Allah has surely
of the signing of the Treaty of Hudaibiyyah
20- Allah promised you many acquisitions encompassed them, and Allah has power
when the Prophet and his companions in-
which you will take, then He hastened on over all things.
tended to perform their first Hajj in the 6th
this one for you and held back the hands of
year after hijrah and were turned back by These rewards Allah refers to here are the
men from you, and that it may be a sign for
the pagans upon signing the treaty. The next rewards the Muslims were not able to
the believers and that He may guide you on
ayah is referring again to the story when the achieve in the battle of Khaybar. The battle
a right path.
rumour of Usman’s death came to the camp of Khaybar was fought against a Jewish tribe
of the Prophet, the Prophet gathered his In the first part of the ayah, Allah is giving whose members lived on the outskirts of
companions and took a covenant, under a another universal message. He rewards us Madinah, after numerous warnings by the
tree, from them ensuring that if there was but a little in this world. A small taste of Prophet (P) to desist from spying on the
any war then they would fight to the last. reward so that we do not loose our faith and Muslims for the infidels of Quraysh. As the
This strategy was so effective that soon Prophet (P) was at peace with the Makkans
after the news of this filtered to Makkah after the treaty of Hudaibiyyah, he decided
it instilled a sense of fear in the pagans. to confront the Jews of Khaybar but he
They therefore sent a messenger prayed to Allah that the army of the Mus-
(Suhail) to the Prophet (P) to negotiate lims can defeat them with minimal or no
and to confirm that the news that had bloodshed to merely eradicate this nest of
been relieved was indeed a rumour. The mischief making in the heart of the Muslim
allegiance is referred to in ayah 18: territory. The fortresses of the Jews were
easily conquered save for the last and big-
18-Certainly Allah was well pleased
gest one where the famous warrior Murhab
with the believers when they swore
was protecting the fortress. The H. Prophet
allegiance to you under the tree, and He
gave the charge of the army to Abu Bakr
knew what was in their hearts, so He
who was defeated, then on the second day
sent down tranquillity on them and
he gave it to Omar and again to no avail.
rewarded them with a near victory,
Imam Ali (AS) was at this time suffering
19- And many acquisitions which they from an inflammation of the eye (‫)رﻣﺪ‬and
will take; and Allah is Mighty, Wise. upon these defeats that the ayah refers to,
the Prophet (P) said “By God, tomorrow I
This ayah, although specific in its con-
shall give the banner to a man who loves
text, is very general in its application.
God and His Messenger, and who is loved
The best and first reward for perform-
by God and His Messenger. He is the one
ing a good act is the earning of the
who attacks and never relents ill conquer
pleasure of Allah, just as the compan-
the fortress by force”
ions of the Prophet (P) did in 6 A.H as
Allah knew that that they were sin- Many Qurayshite companions wished to be
cerely loyal to the Prophet (P) not just the one so highly praised by the Prophet.
paying lip service. Imam Sadiq (A.S) Imam Ali, at that time, had sore eyes and,
says that if a Mu’min wishes sincerely to therefore, was not expected to be the chosen
do a good deed for the sake of Allah but man. The following day, though, he was
circumstances do not allow him to do it, brought before the Prophet. The Prophet
although he tries hard to, Allah in his medicated and cured the Imam's eyes with
infinite mercy will grant that person the his blessed saliva. The Imam never com-
reward of actually doing the action! It is plained about his eyes again. Military tradi-
merely because Allah knows the sincer- tion demands that the army confronts the
ity they have in their hearts. It was be- enemy ahead of the commander. Imam Ali
loose our faith, just as He gave the Muslims
cause of the sincerity that they were re- did the opposite. He ran ahead of the army
a victory over the Jews in the battle of Khay-
warded with tranquillity and a near victory. towards the Jewish fortress. A group of
bar but yet protected them from the Kuffar
Mufassireen have 2 opinions on the meaning Jews, led by their hero Marhab, came out of
of Quraysh when they went unarmed to
of the last statement (‫)ﻓﺘﺤًﺎ آﺮﻳﺒﺎ‬one is that it is the fortress to face the Imam. Imam Ali
Hudaibiyyah, for these were all signs. Every
referring to the eventual concurring of Mak- swiftly annihilated Marhab. Marhab's men
single calamity, difficulty, reward, success in
kah and the second, a more plausible expla- ran back to the fortress and closed the heavy
our life is but a mere sign for us. How many
nation, is the victory at the battle of Khaybar door. The Imam, with his bare hands, un-
times have we been on the edge of a preci-
which was a few months after the treaty. It hinged the gate and went after them. When
pice and Allah has caught us from dropping
also explains the worldly reward of war asked later how he performed such a feat, he
or so close to a great reward and yet have
booty. The simple, yet profound message replied “I did not remove it by human
lost it? Are these not mere reminders that
that can be gleaned from these ayaat is that power but by a divine power by a strong
we have no power over anything and that
in essence, no affair is in your hands. Only soul who was confident of meeting with his
these are signs of His presence and power!?
Allah has the power over ALL things and Lord upon death” This was the might of God
Allah wishes to increase the level of our
when calamities strike, a complete trust that referred to in the above ayah, Manifested
faith in Him and therefore provides us with
Allah is in whose hands all lies, in whose through Imam Ali (AS).
practical lessons, which are the most effec-
hands NOTHING can go wrong and Who
tive kind of lesson! (Continued on page 11)
has the power over ALL things will make a
Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 10
The next verses again refer to the treaty of Muavia in order to protect the Shi’a Mus- tain circumstances, the ‘if’ clause can be
Hudaibiyyah. Even years later, the disbe- lims at the time. The message is simple and mentioned without the cause, an example is
lievers began to regret having signed the clear yet profound, that ALL is in the hands when the context or cause is obvious and
treaty with the Prophet (P) as the Muslims of Allah and it will be repeated as it is the therefore need not be mentioned. The next
were beginning to fortify their forces and LAW of Allah. section of the verse does just that, the ‘if’
become a stronger presence especially hav- clause is mentioned but the reason is not
25- It is they who disbelieved and turned
ing eliminated the spying Jews of Khaybar. given but it is clear that the result of the
you away from the Sacred Mosque and
They badly regretted the fact that they did Muslims conquering Makkah without pa-
(turned off) the offering withheld from ar-
not, when the Muslims were totally un- tience would have resulted in Allah not
riving at its destined place;…
armed, eliminate them completely instead withholding the hands of the unbelievers.
of signing the treaty. Upon that the ayah In the struggle on the path of Allah, no one This peace treaty also eventually paved the
was revealed: including Shitan can make a barrier on the way to a similarly bloodless victory in the
path towards Allah and therefore in all in- conquest of Makkah. Allah planned it in this
22- And if those who disbelieve fight with
stances the path toward Allah is mentioned manner so as the sanctity of Makkah and
you, they would certainly turn (their) backs,
in the Quran, the word ‫(ﺻ ّﺪ‬hindrance or the surrounding place is maintained and
then they would not find any protector or a
dignified. Allah in this verse emphasises the
helper.
fact that He wanted to afford a special pro-
23- Such has been the course of Allah tection for those Muslims still living in Mak-
that has indeed run before, and you kah, who would have been prosecuted be-
shall not find a change in Allah's cause of the war or alternatively been
course. ‘collateral damage’ from the resulting battle.
The ayah clearly states that, despite In addition, attacking Makkah would have
the seemingly weaker position of the resulted in the fuelling of propaganda
Muslims, they would have still been against the Muslims which would have
successful if they entered into a con- been damaging for the young religion in
flict. The ayah is explaining that it is that juncture of its development.
Allah who is protecting the sincere so that Allah may cause to enter into His
believers, not the weapons or the mercy whomsoever He pleases; had they
wealth or what we presume or think been widely separated one from another, We
is responsible for protection. This is would surely have punished those who dis-
not mere conjecture but is a divine believed from among them with a painful
LAW that is the (‫ﺳﻨّﺔ‬
ُ ) of Allah that existed punishment.
delaying) is used. The word ‫ﺳ ّﺪ‬is a barrier
before, and will continually exist just as the
of some sort just as a dam is a barrier to the Another reason for Allah, wishing the
physical laws such as gravity existed and
passage of water. Therefore, shaitan is not Muslims to sign the treaty was to allow
will continue existing until the universe is
ON the right path but is at the right path some of the unbelievers and opportunity to
destroyed.
distracting us from the journey. These subtle embrace Islam. The significant point of col-
24- And He it is Who held back their hands use of words is a message that Allah is giv- lateral damage is further mentioned in this
from you and your hands from them in the ing us that the path towards HIM is not ayah where Allah is specifying that if the
valley of Mecca after He had given you vic- blocked and can never be blocked by any- Muslims were separated from the disbeliev-
tory over them; and Allah is Seeing what one and therefore one cannot have the ex- ers then surely the punishment of Allah
you do. cuse that ‘I cannot better myself’. All what would have come on the disbelievers. Some
must one do is to get up and move again years later, Imam Sadiq (AS) was asked
It is Allah who saved them in the treaty of
and not loose hope! In this verse the word whether Imam Ali (AS) was not strong
Hudaibiyyah and also saved the disbeliev-
enough to annihilate his enemies when he
ers as there was no bloodshed whatsoever at ‫ﺻ ّﺪ‬is used indicating that the Muslims were
merely delayed from reaching and conquer- became Imam (caliph) when he underwent
this time. This treaty and its benefits were
ing Makkah, they did not make a barrier! 3 civil wars. Imam replied that he definitely
replicated a few years later when Imam
was. They then asked why Imam Ali (AS)
Hasan (AS) signed a peace treaty with …and were it not for the believing men and
let some of his enemies go such as Talha and
the believing women,
Zubayr? Imam replied that, Imam Ali (AS)
Imam Sadiq (A) said: whom, not having known,
was selective because of a verse in the
you might have trodden
Quran and Imam quoted the last portion of
down, and thus something
"Fatima has nine names near Allah hateful might have af-
this verse, and explained that if there was
(Exalted be His Name), they are: Fatima, flicted you on their ac- even one true believer in the offspring of his
enemy, he would spare his life!
Siddiqah (the honest), Al-Mubarakah (the count without- knowledge-
A similar reason can be given as to why the
blessed one), At-Tahirah (virtuous), Az- The following section is a Prophet (P) did not kill Abu Sufyan, the
Zakiyah (the chaste), Ar-Radhiatul further indication of the head of the mischief makers, when Makkah
was conquered in that he had the knowl-
Mardhiah (she who is gratified and who extreme eloquence of the
edge that someday one of the people of the
Quran. In Arabic and in
shall be satisfied), Al-Muhaddathah (a any language, if the ‘if’ cursed tree (‫(ﺷﺠﺮة اﻟﻤﻠﻌﻮن‬Umar bin Abdul
Aziz) will have mercy on his family and to
person, other than a prophet, that the clause is mentioned then
allow that, the Prophet (P) spared the life of
the ‘cause’ is also men-
angels speak to), and Az-Zahra (the tioned. Such as the state- Abu Sufyan

splendid)." ment ‘if it rains, we will


move inside’. Under cer-
Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 11
Jaabir Bin Hayyan
Taking a slight detour from the ordinary, this month, the highlight is on a figure who is a true
inspiration to many. It is amazing to note that Muslim scientists at their time were the most ad-
vanced thinkers and yet today despite the numbers, Muslims have not produced such scientists.
This highlight is a plea to the Muslims of tomorrow to take up the cause and to replenish this
dying bred of scholars who not only are masters in their secular field but also are Muslim schol-
ars (Ayatollah Hasan Zaadeh Aamuli as an example of a contemporary scientist/Islamic scholar–
Featured in Al Fajr Issue 3 Vol 4)
Jabir Ibn Haiyan, the alchemist Geber of the Middle Ages, is generally known as the father of chem-
istry. Abu Musa Jabir Ibn Hayyan, sometimes called al-Harrani and al-Sufi, was the son of the
druggist (Attar). The precise date of his birth is the subject of some discussion, but it is established
that he practiced medicine and alchemy in Kufa around 776 A.D. He is reported to have studied
under Imam Ja'far Sadiq and the Ummayed prince Khalid Ibn Yazid. In his early days, he practiced
medicine and was under the patronage of the Barmaki Vizir during the Abbasid Caliphate of
Haroon al-Rashid. He shared some of the effects of the downfall of the Barmakis and was placed
under house arrest in Kufa, where he died in 803 A.D.
alchemist Jabir ibn Hayyan, from a 15th c. European
Jabir's major contribution was in the field of chemistry. He introduced experimental investigation
portrait of "Geber", Codici Ashburnhamiani 1166,
Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Florence into alchemy, which rapidly changed its character into modern chemistry. The ruins of his well-
known laboratory remained after centuries, but his fame rests on over 100 monumental treatises, of
which 22 relate to chemistry and alchemy. His contribution of fundamental importance to chemistry includes perfection of scientific tech-
niques such as crystallization, distillation, calcination, sublimation and evaporation and development of several instruments for the same.
The fact of early development of chemistry as a distinct branch of science by the Arabs, instead of the earlier vague ideas, is well-established
and the very name chemistry is derived from the Arabic word al-Kimya, which was studied and developed extensively by the Muslim scien-
tists.
Perhaps Jabir's major practical achievement was the discovery of mineral and other acids, which he prepared for the first time in his alembic
(Anbique). Apart from several contributions of basic nature to alchemy, involving largely the preparation of new compounds and develop-
ment of chemical methods, he also developed a number of applied chemical processes, thus becoming a pioneer in the field of applied sci-
ence. His achievements in this field include preparation of various metals, development of steel, dyeing of cloth and tanning of leather, var-
nishing of water-proof cloth, use of manganese dioxide in glass-making, prevention of rusting, lettering in gold, identification of paints,
greases, etc. During the course of these practical endeavours, he also developed aqua regia to dissolve gold. Jabir laid great stress on experi-
mentation and accuracy in his work.
Based on their properties, he has described three distinct types of substances. First, spirits i.e. those which vaporize on heating, like cam-
phor, arsenic and ammonium chloride; secondly, metals, for example, gold, silver, lead, copper, iron; and thirdly, the category of com-
pounds which can be converted into powders. He thus paved the way for such later classification as metals, non-metals and volatile sub-
stances.
Although known as an alchemist, he did not seem to have seriously pursued the preparation of noble metals as an alchemist; instead he
devoted his effort to the development of basic chemical methods and study of mechanisms of chemical reactions in them- selves and thus
helped evolve chemistry as a science from the legends of alchemy. He emphasized that, in chemical reactions, definite quantities of various
substances are involved and thus can be said to have paved the way for the law of constant proportions.
A large number of books are included in his corpus. Apart from chemistry, he also contributed to other sciences such as medicine and as-
tronomy. His books on chemistry, including his Kitab-al-Kimya, and Kitab al-Sab'een were translated into Latin and various European lan-
guages. These translations were popular in Europe for several centuries arid have influenced the evolution of modern chemistry. Several
technical terms devised by Jabir, such as alkali, are today found in
various European languages and have become part of scientific vo-
cabulary. Only a few of his books have been edited and published,
while several others preserved in Arabic have yet to be annotated
and published.
Doubts have been expressed as to whether all the voluminous
work included in the corpus is his own contribution or it contains
later commentaries/additions by his followers. According to Sar-
ton, the true worth of his work would only be known when all his
books have been edited and published. His religious views and
philosophical concepts embodied in the corpus have been criti-
cized but, apart from the question of their authenticity, it is to be
emphasized that the major contribution of Jabir lies in the field of
chemistry and not in religion. His various breakthroughs e.g.,
preparation of acids for the first time, notably nitric, hydrochloric,
citric and tartaric acids, and emphasis on systematic experimenta-
tion are outstanding and it is on the basis of such work that he can
justly be regarded as the father of modern chemistry. In the words
of Max Mayerhaff, the development of chemistry in Europe can be
traced directly to Jabir Ibn Haiyan.

Al– Fajr ‫ اﻟﻒﺠﺮ‬4(5) ‫׀‬Pg 12