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 Topic: Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?

 (Read 9638 times)
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  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #60 - July 10, 2016, 08:43 AM

    Why would Jewish scribes have been using the script (at least pre-conquest) rather than writing in Aramaic, Hebrew or Greek? I could be wrong about this though and I'm open to arguments.


    The same can be said about Christian scribes? "why would Christian scribes in a monastic environment been using the arabic script rather than Aramaic or Greek?", or am I missing something?

    Isn´t the  tradition of meticulous copying of texts without changing anything in a very rigorous way a very Jewish tradition and skill? I am also thinking of Tefillien that were found in Qumran centuries before the emergence of Quran. Maybe copying verses was even "big business" and there was a big market for Tefillien and Mezoeza...Why not also do Quranic texts in these late antiquity copying centers ... Not a realistic scenario?

    The fact that the rasm of the Quran is so stable during these first centuries is amazing, no? To accomplish this, there must have existed a lot of expertise in copying techniques.  I found this about the Jewish copying traditions and the Masoretes responsible for preserving texts from the Jewish traditions (from 500 AD on).http://www.defendingyourfaith.org/Old%20Testament.htm. Could these Masorete centers not have been candidates to provide the copying expertise to the Quran just as well as the Christian monastic centers?
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #61 - July 10, 2016, 12:01 PM

    On how God speaks, Umberto Eco writes in Baudolino:

    in the Acts of the Apostles it says that God from one man devised our humankind to inhabit the entire face of the earth, its face – not the other side, which doesn’t exist.

    “I don’t know if you have ever studied the measurements of the Temple, well don’t, because it is enough to drive you crazy. In Kings it says… In chronicles it says…

    The problem however arises when you read the vision of Ezekiel. Not one measurement holds up, and so a number of pious men have admitted that Ezekiel had indeed had a vision, which is a bit like saying he had drunk too much and was seeing double. Nothing wrong with that , poor Ezekiel (he also had a right to his fun), but then Richard of St Victoire reasoned as follows: if everything, every number, every straw in the Bible has a spiritual meaning, we must clearly understand what it says literally, because it is one thing to say , for the spiritual meaning, that something is three long and another’s length is nine, since these two numbers have different mystical meanings.

    “The most alert commentators have not succeeded in establishing the exact structure of the Temple. You Christians do not understand that the sacred text is born from a Voice. The Lord, haqadoch baruch hu, that the holy one, may his name always be blessed , when he speaks to his prophets, allows them to hear sounds, but does not show figures, as you people do, with your illuminated pages. The voice surely provokes images in the heart of the prophet, but these images are not immobile; they liquefy, change shape according to the melody of that voice, and if you want to reduce to images the voice of the Lord, blessed always be his name, you freeze that voice, as if it were fresh water turning to ice that no longer quenches thirst, but numbs the limbs in the chill of death,”

    When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.


    A.A. Milne,

    "We cannot slaughter each other out of the human impasse"
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #62 - July 10, 2016, 03:49 PM

    The Jews used to teach that Ezekiel was not to be read until one reached 30 years of age.
    https://sojo.net/articles/don-t-read-part-bible-if-you-re-under-30-or-woman

    (I was told, not until 40. But then I suspect I was immature for my age...)
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #63 - July 10, 2016, 06:29 PM

    The Jews of Medina would have been writing in Arabic.

    No?


    Depends on the subject. There was still a tradition of using a written form of Hebrew in a religious context usually confined to Judaism. However outside this context it entirely depends on the purpose of a written text will have. There is no doubt later that Arabic was used since it influenced later developments in Hebrew up until the modern version.
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #64 - July 10, 2016, 06:52 PM

    There is no doubt later that Arabic was used since it influenced later developments in Hebrew up until the modern version.

    I think this would have mainly been Arabic written using the Hebrew alphabet.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judeo-Arabic_languages
    Quote
    Jews in Muslim countries wrote—sometimes in their dialects, sometimes in a more classical style—in a mildly adapted Hebrew alphabet rather than using the Arabic script, often including consonant dots from the Arabic alphabet to accommodate phonemes that did not exist in the Hebrew alphabet.

    If this is the case why should we expect pre-Islamic Arabic speaking Jews to have used the Arabic script? It's possible that they could have used it but it certainly isn't obvious that they would have done.
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #65 - July 10, 2016, 08:17 PM

    But it is a business after all.

    If you are a "scribe for hire", would you not just deliver whatever service the customer was willing to pay the most for?


    I think it is likely that most influential people could read and write sufficiently well to cope (some letters not even the scribe should see), but it was manual labour, and they would be likely to hire a scribe when it should look good, was a large workload or just plain boring.
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #66 - July 10, 2016, 08:20 PM

    Quote
    If this is the case why should we expect pre-Islamic Arabic speaking Jews to have used the Arabic script? It's possible that they could have used it but it certainly isn't obvious that they would have done.


    Arabic script seems not to have been widely spread even during the first decades AFTER the islamic conquests, so indeed very improbable that pre-islamic arabic jews would have used the Arabic script. But that makes this almost perfect transmission of the rasm even more remarkable. Did the scribal expertise exist in the first  arabic-muslim community? Or did they need to rely on existing scribal centers/knowledge: Jewish or Christian.
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #67 - July 10, 2016, 08:31 PM

    My guess would be that they may have made use of Arabic Christian scribal expertise. I'd see the Arabic script as originally an essentially Christian script.
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #68 - July 10, 2016, 08:45 PM

    Did the Jews when writing Aramaic use the Hebrew script?
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #69 - July 10, 2016, 08:58 PM

    Yes, as far as I know. The Talmud was written in Aramaic using Hebrew script. I think Syriac would have been a mainly Christian literary form of Aramaic. The Arabic script developed from a Nabatean version of the Syriac script.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_Babylonian_Aramaic
    Quote
    Babylonian Aramaic was the form of Middle Aramaic employed by writers in Babylonia between the 4th century and the 11th century CE. It is most commonly identified with the language of the Babylonian Talmud (which was completed in the seventh century) and of post-Talmudic (Geonic) literature, which are the most important cultural products of Babylonian Jews.
    ....
    Like the Judean (Galilean Aramaic) and Assyrian Jewish dialects it was written with Hebrew alphabet.


    The Samaritans also had their own version of Aramaic and alphabet.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samaritan_alphabet
    Quote
    The Samaritan alphabet is used by the Samaritans for religious writings, including the Samaritan Pentateuch, writings in Samaritan Hebrew, and for commentaries and translations in Samaritan Aramaic and occasionally Arabic.

  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #70 - July 11, 2016, 12:20 AM

    Quote
    Yes, as far as I know. The Talmud was written in Aramaic using Hebrew script. I think Syriac would have been a mainly Christian literary form of Aramaic. The Arabic script developed from a Nabatean version of the Syriac script.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_Babylonian_Aramaic
    The Samaritans also had their own version of Aramaic and alphabet.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samaritan_alphabet

    Did the Jews when writing Aramaic use the Hebrew script?

    Arabic script seems not to have been widely spread even during the first decades AFTER the islamic conquests, so indeed very improbable that pre-islamic arabic jews would have used the Arabic script. But that makes this almost perfect transmission of the rasm even more remarkable. Did the scribal expertise exist in the first  arabic-muslim community? Or did they need to rely on existing scribal centers/knowledge: Jewish or Christian.


    linguistics analysis of these so-called god's words of religious scriptures is indeed the best   way of analyzing the origins of the ancient/medieval documents,, Even the written scripts., e.g. writing language from right to left    and words between  the languages, between the cultures  must be  transported by the people movement ..

    All these ancient scripts are written from right to left ..  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Right-to-left
    Quote

    Cypriote syllabic script ) – predates Phoenician influence.
    Phoenician alphabet   – ancient, precursor to Hebrew, Imperial Aramaic, and Greek.
    Imperial Aramaic alphabet    – ancient, closely related to Hebrew and Phoenician. Spread widely by the Neo-Assyrian and Achaemenid empires. The later Palmyrene form  was also used to write Aramaic.
    Old South Arabian
    Pahlavi scripts  derived from Aramaic.
    Avestan alphabet (Avst 134) – from Pahlavi, with added letters. Used for recording the Zoroastrian sacred texts during the Sassanid era.
    Sogdian  – derived from Syriac. Sogdian eventually rotated from RTL to top-to-bottom, giving rise to the Old Uyghur, Mongolian, and Manchu vertical scripts.
    Nabatean alphabet – intermediate between Syriac and Arabic.
    Kharosthi (Khar 305) – an ancient script of India, derived from Aramaic.
    Old Turkic  and Old Hungarian runes
    Old Italic alphabets (Ital 210).,   Umbrian, Oscan, and Faliscan were written right-to-left. Unicode treats Old Italic as left-to-right, to match modern usage.[
    Lydian alphabet (Lydi 116) – ancient; some texts are left-to-right  


    So none of these languages came out of the guy flying the  blue skies .. they are all interdependent and took long time to  evolve and I WOULD NOT GIVE AN INCH OF SPACE TO RASCALS OF 21st CENTURY WHO SAY THESE SO-CALLED SCRIPTURES OF ANCIENT CAVE DWELLER TELL TALES  ARE FROM ALLAHGOD ..WHATEVER GOD  

    Do not let silence become your legacy.. Question everything   
    I renounced my faith to become a kafir, 
    the beloved betrayed me and turned in to  a Muslim
     
  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #71 - July 11, 2016, 01:26 PM

    My guess would be that they may have made use of Arabic Christian scribal expertise. I'd see the Arabic script as originally an essentially Christian script.


    The closeness of Arabic script to Syriac isn´t necessarily an indication of who collaborated in the reproduction of the Quranic text. By the time Quran emerged, Arabic was already established, but apparently not widely used yet. I can imagine that Jewish and Christian scribes would of had the skills (or could have learnt them) to start writing(copying) the Quranic rasm.

    Thought experiment: Mohammed or an early caliph wants to order eg 50 identical copies of the Quranic rasm in the first decades of 7th C. Where would he order these?
    The Quranic texts contains a very anti-trinitarian-anti-christian ideology. Would the monastic communities have been  likely to offer their services?
    Like Ursus says:

    But it is a business after all.


    True, but there must have been limits to the business model....


  • Qur'an: God's or Muhammad's Words?
     Reply #72 - August 09, 2016, 07:29 PM

    Arabic script seems not to have been widely spread even during the first decades AFTER the islamic conquests, so indeed very improbable that pre-islamic arabic jews would have used the Arabic script. But that makes this almost perfect transmission of the rasm even more remarkable. Did the scribal expertise exist in the first  arabic-muslim community? Or did they need to rely on existing scribal centers/knowledge: Jewish or Christian.

    My guess would be that they may have made use of Arabic Christian scribal expertise.


    This seems to confirm the involvement of Christian scribes:

    https://iqsaweb.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/st_andrews_ag2.pdf
    Quote from: Alain George
    A second hypothesis is also worth considering: the Qur’anic leaves, or at least some of them, were copied by Christian scribes in the seventh century. Such practices are attested in some very early akhbar reported by ‘Abd al-Razzaq and others, which mention followers of the Prophet’s companions (tabi‘un) who had the Qur’an copied by Christian scribes in Hira, in southern Iraq, for pay.

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