May 25, 2013 | 03:05 AM (BD Time)
25 May, 2013 Saturday
Behavioural objectives of the Holy Quran
(From previous issue)
The earlier chapter deplored the inhumanity of man to man and declared that all men, rich and poor, young and old, were equal in the eyes of Allah regardless of their colour and nationality. But the good were not equal to the wicked, the learned were not equal to the ignorant and those who accepted Him as their sole Master were not equal to those who bent forwards or backwards to accommodate other masters.
The verses urged the people to feed the orphans and free their slaves. They criticized the person who prayed but at the same time violated the bonds of humanity through cruelty and indifference to the plight of others.
The elders of the community were engaged, Mohammad (S.A.) was stopped from worshipping Allah freely and his followers were persecuted. Verses were revealed proclaiming total freedom of worship. The chapters became longer and the stories of the Prophets of the past more elaborate. The Prophet and the believers were assured through these verses that they would be the eventual victors because God was with them. The Message of the Holy Quran spread to village and cities around Mecca. More and more people accepted the faith in Allah and the Holy Quran. The Jews and the Christian showed interest in the spreading faith. They came to Mecca and had long discussions with the Prophet, which occasioned the rumours that a Christian was teaching the Holy Quran to the Prophet.
The Holy Quran was one hundred and fourteen chapters. It was revealed over a period of twenty three years. The first thirteen of them in Mecca and next ten in Medina. At this time the Arabic language was only four hundred years old. Along with Hebrew it was the only other language of its time to be written from right to left.
As more and more people accepted the faith, the power equation became activated. The Eastern Roman Empire as well as the Persians became interested in the fortunes of the new faith. The sympathy of the local Jews and Christian waned. However, some Jews and Christians gave him tacit approval and encouraged him by accepting the faith. The other joined the pagans and assured them that the Holy Quran was not a Book of God, and therefore no harm would come to them if they did not heed its warning and accept faith in its teachings.
The verses revealed in this period exhorted the Jews and the Christians to support the Holy Quran and the Prophet for, like them, he believed in One God, the world. Hereafter, the angels, the Scriptures and the Prophets whereas the idolaters believed in none of these.
The Holy Quran continued to uphold the value of the Torah and the Gospel as outstanding Books of guidance despite the fact that the Jews and the Christians accused the Holy Quran of being a forgery. These revelations identified the interests of the believers in the Holy Quran with those of the believers in the Torah and the Gospel regardless of the what the Prophet's opponents said or did. The rejecters of the faith who did not believe in a world order based on moral expedience, equality, justice and eternal punishment and reward were exposed as the common enemies of the believers in the Scriptures.
So strong was this identity of interest that when the Christian Eastern Roman Empire was defeated by the fire-worshipping Persians, the idolaters of Mecca rejoiced exuberantly and jeered at the believers. The Prophet and his followers were grieved to this defeat. To mark this event a whole chapter bears the symbolic name of Sooratul-Room (translated as 'the chapter of Greeks' because of the identification of Greeks with the Eastern Roman Empire) after this event. This chapter speaks eloquently of the political affiliations of its time. It reports the defeat of the Byzantians and prophesies that the Persians will be vanquished by their defeated adversaries in the near future. When this prophecy comes true within the next years, the believers rejoice at the news and more people accept faith in the Holy Quran.
The Persians Empire and its client states of Oman and Yeman did not view the growing power of the Holy Prophet kindly. Some opponents were encouraged to sabotage the effectiveness of the Holy Quran through the help of these sources. They brought home famous Persian tales and recited them to audience in order to draw them away from listening the Holy Quran. A mention of such incidents is made in the Holy Quran.
The Makkans were given a very heavy dosage of interesting Persian legends to wipe out the effects of the stories of Abrahim, Joseph and Moses. But Persian's legends were stories of the grandeur of Persian kings, their struggle against each other, their struggle against their great eastern and western neighbours. They were stories about the strength, loyalty and skill of the kings' wrestlers who were totally subservient to their masters.
(To be continued)
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