By the Pen Magazine
“Mighty and perfect versification of the Qur’an’s letters and words, which the letters compose have impressed people since it was revealed. Each person who is not against Qur’an cannot help hearing the music belonging to this language of its coherence, writing and the deep effect it does on the human soul.”
“Whenever a person recites one letter from the Book of Allah, one good deed is recorded for him. One good deed is equal to ten good deeds the like of it. I do not say that Alif-Lam-Mim is a letter, but Alif is a letter Lam is a letter and Mim is a letter. (Tirmidhi)”
When looked at the history, every language developed after it was born and over time it is transformed. And some of the languages have slid away by the passage of time. That Arabic language doesn’t have a “maturation period” is what makes it different from other languages. Arabic with its stable and perfect rules is the only language in the world that doesn’t need development. In this context, it is the only language worthy of being a means of the divine declaration.
The I’jaz (succinctness) of the Qur’an is that it impossible to produce a similar of it. All the creatures are helpless of producing a similar of it. Balaghah (eloquence) is each letter or word of the Qur’an’s telling the complete and consistent truth to all walks of life and to all the times. Thus, fully comprehending the i’jaz (succinctness) and the balaghah (eloquence) of the Qur’an is possible only with the integrity of meaning and utterance.
Speaking of Qur’an recitation, it does not bore people.
The sustenance of the mind is meaning. We know that thinking about the meaning tires and bores senses. But the divine and nabawi words.are the nutriment of the“lataif”(senses). And it is again the miracle of the Qur’an that despite the mind doesn’t perceive the meaning of these senses and doesn’t get bored from reading and listening to the Qur’an.
The utterance and the letters of the Qur’an are the symbols and names of Islam. What preserves the true meanings of verses is its living utterance and letters. Thus, they are impossible to change. Besides, the words and the letters of the Qur’an are like the skin. If you strip the living skin of the body, he will die. If the letters and the words of the Qur’an are changed, it wouldn’t be Qur’an.
For over a century it has been questioned why the Qur’an is in Arabic. Some individuals and groups have argued that the ‘ibadat (worships) should be performed in people’s mother tongue. But these individuals who are rising up this view are -interestingly- not the worshippers at all. They wish “the worship in another language other than Arabic not for themselves but for others because the majority of those people do not worship and ignore it but talk. Bad intentioned – questions such as “Why do we read Qur’an in Arabic?” “Why do we perform salah in Arabic?” are –in the contrary to their aim- unable to dissuade Muslims from reading the Qur’an in Arabic.
Primarily we can handle the subject evaluating two different views:
According to the first view; The Qur’an must be read –as it is original form [in Arabic] as an ibadah (worship)- all the worships must be performed in its original form, a translation and an interpretation “along with its Arabic form” must be read in order to be informed of the meaning of the Qur’an.
According to the second one which focuses only on learning the meaning of the Qur’an; a translation must be read and the original Arabic form of it must be wholly left and all the worships must be performed in mother tongue.
The first view –Ahl al-Sunnah view- is what it is supposed to be as a matter of fact. But the latter is considered to be quite the contrary of the Qur’an and Sunnah measurements. Because;
ALLAH WISHED THE QUR’AN BE ARABIC
Lo! We have appointed it a Lecture, in Arabic that haply ye may conceive (by understanding). (Surah Zukhruf, 3)
A Lecture in Arabic (we revealed), containing no crookedness, which haply they may ward off. (Surah Zumar, 28)
Allah created many languages for the mankind, but he determined Arabic language to address his servant among the languages. There is countless wisdom behind Allah’s revealing a universal book with an Arab Prophet to an Arab tribe.
Imam Zarkani emphasizes that the throne of the Qur’an is Arabic by stating: “It is understood from the verses that the Qur’an’s being Arabic is the will of Allah (swt). Because it is impossible for the Divine book to leave His Throne. His throne is Arabic. And it is Allah Most High who raised the Qur’an to the throne. Allah made the Qur’an the most beautiful of the words, He crowned it with eloquence and he made the Qur’an’s Arabic a mirror to this I’jaz (succinctness) and excellence.”
Each individual -if not an opponent of the Qur’an- will easily conceive with the help of following explanations, that it is inextricable not to have the Quran as a universal book in any other languages other than Arabic.
QUALIFICATIONS MAKING ARABIC SUPERIOR TO OTHER LANGUAGES
When looked at the history, every language developed after after it was born and over time it is transformed. And some of the languages have slid away by the passage of time. That Arabic language doesn’t have a “maturation period” is what makes it different from other languages. Arabic with its stable and perfect rules is the only language in the world that does not need development. In this context, it is the only language worthy of being a means of the divine declaration.
Arabic is syntactical which means it cannot be compared to any other languages in terms of grammatical rules.
The shortest wording without any loss in the meaning is only in the Arabic language. It is also the most advanced language amongst world languages in terms of eloquence, literature and fluency. Thus no other language can express the meanings in the world.
The richest language in term of words is also Arabic. It has a different word for each action. You can derive many different words from one word root.
Also, there is concordance between meaning and the phonetics of words. For example: when you say “zalzala” (earthquake) the “quake” in the meaning you feel on your tongue. For this reason, it is again Arabic language that makes the mind, soul, heart and all the senses of the mankind perceive the divine truths as it does the translatorship of the soul, heart and mind.
Allah, if he had wished, would assign this job to another language by giving the same qualifications to that language. But divine wisdom determined the Arabic language.
Arabic Language Prepared Arabic Society to Perceive the Qur’an
In Arabic culture poets and orators were giving effective advice with fluent sermons and eloquent poems to the public. It is such an admonitory situation that Arabs with an unstilted Arabic of Jahiliyyah period went far beyond the fluency and eloquence. Though undeveloped, ignorant and bedouin they were, it is understood that Allah prepared them to perceive the Qur’an and Qur’anic culture by directing them to fluency and eloquence.
QUR’ANIC ARABIC IS A MIRACLE.
Arabic was not stilted before The Glorious Qur’an was revealed. Namely, Jahiliyyah arabs –most of whom are illiterates- were speaking Arabic in conformity with the grammatical rules but were not using the writing at all. The Qur’an was the first Arabic book revealed in a period where eloquence and fluency were so popular and it was revealed in the highest rank of syntax of Arabic.
Arabic was stilted, rose again and gained a new meaning with the revelation of the Glorious Qur’an.
Arabic, by the revelation of the Qur’an, affected all the other languages on earth beginning with the language of the Muslim societies. Arab orators and poets were astonished upon hearing Qur’an recitation and the works of these orators and litterateurs fell in value. Imam Zarkani gives the following example:
“What is left behind of the power and excellence for the Sultan, if he leaves the throne? Behold, Allah made the Qur’an the sultan of the words, crowned it with i’jaz (succinctness) and made the Arabic of it a mirror to this i’jaz and excellence.”
Yes, though the Arabic is the only language to express the meaning best, having no peers in eloquence, the Qur’an polished it with the highest rank of fluency and clarity. Plainly what is sacred and miracle is the Qur’anic Arabic.
ARABIC IS THE LANGUAGE OF RESIDENTS OF HEAVEN
Which the True Spirit hath brought down, upon thy heart, that thou mayst be (one) of the warners, In plain Arabic speech. (Surah al Shuara; 193, 194, 195)
Imam al-Qurtubi in his tafsir states: “The word “Arabic” mentioned in the ayah means [We revealed the Qur’an in Arabic language.] because the language of the residents of heaven is Arabic.”
Imam Suyuti says as the following in his “Al-Itqan fi Ulumi’l Qur’an” on the aforementioned ayah: “All the divine books have been revealed in Arabic. Every revelation has been sent down in Arabic and every prophet translated them into their own languages to inform their nation.”
Omer Nasuhi Bilmen says as the following on the aforementioned ayah: “Arabic is such a language that its meaning is clear and absolute. Likewise, Hud, Salih, Shu’ayb, Isma’il (alaihimussalam – peace be upon them all) also invited their nations to the divine religion with this wide, lucid –which expresses meaning with the clearest and fluent wording- language and terrified their hostiles with this language.”
THE QUR’AN IS MIRACLE WITH ITS MEANING AND WORDS
The miracles of the Qur’an such as i’jaz, eloquence and not being boring appears in its Arabic.
Angel Jabrail (ASM) is said to narrate on the eloquence of the Qur’an as the following: “Each Qur’anic word written in Lawh al-Mahfuz equals to Cuff Mountain in terms of size. Each letter has various meanings. These are solely known by Allah.” (Itqan, pg: 103)
The i’jaz (succinctness) of the Qur’an is it’s being impossible to be produced a similar of it. All the creatures are impotent of producing a similar of it. Balaghah (eloquence) is each letter or word of the Qur’an’s telling the complete and consistent truth to all walks of life and to all the times. Thus, Fully comprehending the i’jaz (succinctness) and the eloquence of the Qur’an is possible only with the integrity of meaning and utterance.
Imam Bediuzzaman says: “An important aspect of the i’jaz appears in the versification and the most important succinctness is the embroidery of the versification of the Qur’an.” What he means by versification is the sequence of the words, sentences and verses.
The Qur’an is a miracle with its meaning, wording and letters. Not only the entire Qur’an, but even one surah or an ayah or a word of it is a miracle. Even a letter “nun” in “na’budu” is a bright key of the truths to be explained in pages long. When the Qur’an is translated the meaning and the wording of it is divided from each other. And once the meaning and wording are divided from each other succinctness (I’jaz) and eloquence get lost.
Speaking of the recitation of the Qur’an that it isn’t boring for the humankind; the nutriment of the mind is the meaning. But we have many more senses that thinking about the meaning tires and bores these senses. So, the nutriment of these senses called “lataif” is the divine and nabawi words. And it is again the miracle of the Qur’an that although the mind doesn’t perceive the meaning these senses don’t get bored from reading and listening to the Qur’an.
Though other languages apart from Arabic are assumed to convey the meanings in the Qur’an to the minds, they are still lack of satisfying the senses other than the mind since their wordings and letters are not spiritual like Qur’an’s