Author Topic: The Koran in Inglish  (Read 1644 times)

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Offline Shiny

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The Koran in Inglish
« on: September 20, 2012, 07:35:18 PM »
In a month or two I want to read the Qu'ran from cover to cover and since I can't read Arabic, what's the best English translation?

Why do I want to read it? I'm interested in all of the religious documents out there from all the religions, just for my own edification (although I don't see them being spiritually harmful). I would like to form my own opinion on why I reject other religions and not consistently cite other people's opinions on them.

Thanks.
“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

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Offline Jetavan

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2012, 07:47:05 PM »
In a month or two I want to read the Qu'ran from cover to cover and since I can't read Arabic, what's the best English translation?

Why do I want to read it? I'm interested in all of the religious documents out there from all the religions, just for my own edification (although I don't see them being spiritually harmful). I would like to form my own opinion on why I reject other religions and not consistently cite other people's opinions on them.

Thanks.
I would recommend two translations, both with commentary. Reading the Qur'an without commentary is a relatively fruitless exercise, sort of like reading the Bible without Church Tradition:

1. Abdullah Yusuf Ali, The Quran. I don't know if it's true or not, but Wikipedia says Ali was a member of the Ismāʿīlī Shīʿa. Online version.

2. Maulana Muhammad Ali, The Holy Qur'an. Muhammad Ali was a Lahori Ahmadiyya, who hold that Muhammad was indeed the last prophet; thus, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (whom the Qadian Ahmadiyya consider to be a prophet after Muhammad) is not considered a prophet by the Lahori. An online version also exists.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2012, 07:55:52 PM by Jetavan »
If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
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Offline HabteSelassie

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2012, 07:48:13 PM »
Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

In a month or two I want to read the Qu'ran from cover to cover and since I can't read Arabic, what's the best English translation?

Why do I want to read it? I'm interested in all of the religious documents out there from all the religions, just for my own edification (although I don't see them being spiritually harmful). I would like to form my own opinion on why I reject other religions and not consistently cite other people's opinions on them.

Thanks.

I've read it, an interesting book, though in truth it comes across as about as dull sometimes as the Book of Mormon.  It lacks the sophistication of the Bible, however this is because the Bible is both older and has endured more translations and copying, so it has absorbed more flavors than the Quran, Quranic literature and development has been relatively stagnant in comparison.  This is of course because of the literalist interpretations of inspired writings in Islamic thought, they read the Quran like fundamentalist evangelicals read the King James Bible, word for word, line for line as if God Himself had written them instead of having inspired them.  That is also why whichever English version we read is inadequate, no true Islamic scholar invests in English translations, it is considered sacreligious, instead such serious minded folks are taught to read Arabic.


I would recommend two translations, both with commentary. Reading the Qur'an without commentary is a relatively fruitless exercise, sort of like reading the Bible without Church Tradition:



Agreed completely, in fact all the more, because the Bible we believe is indeed Divinely inspired, and God speaks through the Holy Spirit.  I do not believe the Quran is Divinely inspired in this sense, and so to understand what Arab culture and Islam intends behind this literature we need to have commentary.  In other words, its like trying to understand Shakespeare without an English professor ;)
stay blessed,
habte selassie
« Last Edit: September 20, 2012, 07:50:05 PM by HabteSelassie »
"Yet stand aloof from stupid questionings and geneologies and strifes and fightings about law, for they are without benefit and vain." Titus 3:10

Offline Shiny

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2012, 07:54:25 PM »
I think that's good to mention, Habte, on the literary qualities of the Qu'ran. I didn't know translations outside of Enlgish proved so much disdain, but I should have assumed that initially of course. I am a bit biased towards the Bible because I feel, as literature only, there is no equal. Sure it can get dry sometimes, but at it's best, there isn't better literature around.

Thanks for the links, Jetavan.
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Offline Randa

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2012, 04:23:46 AM »
In a month or two I want to read the Qu'ran from cover to cover and since I can't read Arabic, what's the best English translation?

Why do I want to read it? I'm interested in all of the religious documents out there from all the religions, just for my own edification (although I don't see them being spiritually harmful). I would like to form my own opinion on why I reject other religions and not consistently cite other people's opinions on them.

Thanks.

There are plenty of English translations now and most of them are available online, might be worth checking out the online versions before you buy one, this a good site for that: http://al-quran.info/

You can test drive the various translations, settle on one to buy, then use that site to compare it with others.

I would recommend a translation that is widely used among English speaking Muslims and/or recommended by "orthodox" Muslims (not translations by "heretics" like the Ahmadiyyas or Submitters). Here are 2 reviews comparing various English translations by Muslim reviewers:

http://www.soundvision.com/info/quran/english.asp

http://www.meforum.org/717/assessing-english-translations-of-the-quran

For commentaries (if the version you choose has no commentary) this is good site: http://www.altafsir.com/

And finally this a topical study of the Quran from a Christian perspective (actually this entire site is very useful): http://answering-islam.org/Authors/Fisher/Topical/index.htm

Offline Theophilos78

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2012, 05:31:37 AM »
In a month or two I want to read the Qu'ran from cover to cover and since I can't read Arabic, what's the best English translation?

Why do I want to read it? I'm interested in all of the religious documents out there from all the religions, just for my own edification (although I don't see them being spiritually harmful). I would like to form my own opinion on why I reject other religions and not consistently cite other people's opinions on them.

Thanks.
Friendly suggestion: Have a comparative reading of the prominent Qur'an translations rather than one single translation since some translators are dishonest enough to conceal the true meaning of a word and mislead the reader.

Try this link: http://www.quranbrowser.com/

You could also read the Qur'an with a commentary: http://www.answering-islam.org/Books/Wherry/index.htm
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Offline orthonorm

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2012, 10:10:15 AM »
The discussion ends here:

The Message of The Qur'an - Muhammad Asad

http://www.amazon.com/The-Message-Quran-Muhammad-Asad/dp/1904510000/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=16XPGOENBTBYY&coliid=I2Z3U1HN7HMRCT

Check the first few highly recommended reviews or google around.
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Offline Jetavan

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2012, 07:44:48 PM »
Ali Unal has a really good English translation of the Qur'an. It also online.
If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.

Offline Theophilos78

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #8 on: October 24, 2012, 01:05:50 PM »
Ali Unal has a really good English translation of the Qur'an. It also online.

You must be kidding me! This is a terrible and biased translation designed to cover up the major mistakes of the Qur'an. Checking Surah 3:35 and Surah 11:71 would be sufficient to put this translation in the trash can.  ;D

Read this article if you want to know how some Muslims distort their Qur'an through various means and why.

Quote
A number of Muslim translators change the meaning of the Qur’an by mistranslating it into a foreign language. Although mistranslation is an act of distortion that does not affect the written text of Islam’s book, it still does change the meaning of a verse and misleads readers that cannot check the accuracy of a translation and base their perception on faulty translations, failing to understand the original meaning of a verse. Unsurprisingly, mistranslations come up whenever some translators feel obliged to cover some theological problems or charges of mistakes by modifying the meaning of a troublesome word or phrase.
http://answering-islam.org/authors/masihiyyen/quranic_distortion1.html
« Last Edit: October 24, 2012, 01:08:12 PM by Theophilos78 »
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Offline Jetavan

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #9 on: October 24, 2012, 02:02:54 PM »
Ali Unal has a really good English translation of the Qur'an. It also online.

You must be kidding me! This is a terrible and biased translation designed to cover up the major mistakes of the Qur'an. Checking Surah 3:35 and Surah 11:71 would be sufficient to put this translation in the trash can.  ;D

Read this article if you want to know how some Muslims distort their Qur'an through various means and why.

Quote
A number of Muslim translators change the meaning of the Qur’an by mistranslating it into a foreign language. Although mistranslation is an act of distortion that does not affect the written text of Islam’s book, it still does change the meaning of a verse and misleads readers that cannot check the accuracy of a translation and base their perception on faulty translations, failing to understand the original meaning of a verse. Unsurprisingly, mistranslations come up whenever some translators feel obliged to cover some theological problems or charges of mistakes by modifying the meaning of a troublesome word or phrase.
http://answering-islam.org/authors/masihiyyen/quranic_distortion1.html
So your point is that the Qur'an has mistakes? If so, I'm not claiming that it doesn't, nor am I claiming that it does, but I find Ali Unal's translation to be a very modern, understandable one.
If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.

Offline Nikolaostheservant

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #10 on: October 24, 2012, 02:34:19 PM »
In a month or two I want to read the Qu'ran from cover to cover and since I can't read Arabic, what's the best English translation?

Why do I want to read it? I'm interested in all of the religious documents out there from all the religions, just for my own edification (although I don't see them being spiritually harmful). I would like to form my own opinion on why I reject other religions and not consistently cite other people's opinions on them.

Thanks.

its not abt rejecting other religions----
its abt having a strong faith in your own Orthodoxy and through this knowing that its a wast of time and efort to bother reading all the religous matirial of other faiths.
AND it can be spiritually harmfull!
Whats will be next on your list....maybe the satanic bible, or even better, try some spells from it to see if there is any thing to it?
carefull you just stepped on the wrong path, turn around.



Offline Theophilos78

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #11 on: October 24, 2012, 02:39:10 PM »
So your point is that the Qur'an has mistakes? If so, I'm not claiming that it doesn't, nor am I claiming that it does, but I find Ali Unal's translation to be a very modern, understandable one.

My point is that Ali Unal's translation is not accurate and reliable no matter how modern and understandable it seems or is.  ;)
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Offline Jetavan

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #12 on: October 24, 2012, 02:52:04 PM »
So your point is that the Qur'an has mistakes? If so, I'm not claiming that it doesn't, nor am I claiming that it does, but I find Ali Unal's translation to be a very modern, understandable one.

My point is that Ali Unal's translation is not accurate and reliable no matter how modern and understandable it seems or is.  ;)
But doesn't Ali Unal translate "imraatu" as "wife"?
« Last Edit: October 24, 2012, 02:53:03 PM by Jetavan »
If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.

Offline Theophilos78

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #13 on: October 24, 2012, 03:13:48 PM »
So your point is that the Qur'an has mistakes? If so, I'm not claiming that it doesn't, nor am I claiming that it does, but I find Ali Unal's translation to be a very modern, understandable one.

My point is that Ali Unal's translation is not accurate and reliable no matter how modern and understandable it seems or is.  ;)
But doesn't Ali Unal translate "imraatu" as "wife"?

Not in the translation of Surah 3:35, a vital verse identifying Mary as Imran's biological daughter. I went to the website through the link you gave and checked it. Ali translated "imarratu" as "the woman" and added in brackets the phrase "from the House of" just before Imran.  ;D
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Offline Jetavan

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #14 on: October 24, 2012, 03:18:51 PM »
So your point is that the Qur'an has mistakes? If so, I'm not claiming that it doesn't, nor am I claiming that it does, but I find Ali Unal's translation to be a very modern, understandable one.

My point is that Ali Unal's translation is not accurate and reliable no matter how modern and understandable it seems or is.  ;)
But doesn't Ali Unal translate "imraatu" as "wife"?

Not in the translation of Surah 3:35, a vital verse identifying Mary as Imran's biological daughter. I went to the website through the link you gave and checked it. Ali translated "imarratu" as "the woman" and added in brackets the phrase "from the House of" just before Imran.  ;D
That's funny. I have the paperback of Ali Unal's Quran, and 3:35, he translates as this: "(Remember) when the wife of 'Imran entreated: 'My Lord, I have dedicated that which is in my womb to Your exclusive service...'"
« Last Edit: October 24, 2012, 03:19:30 PM by Jetavan »
If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.

Offline Theophilos78

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #15 on: October 24, 2012, 03:26:14 PM »

That's funny. I have the paperback of Ali Unal's Quran, and 3:35, he translates as this: "(Remember) when the wife of 'Imran entreated: 'My Lord, I have dedicated that which is in my womb to Your exclusive service...'"

This means the translation in the book is different from the one on the website. He may have changed his translation to evade some problems that he became familiar with some time after the the publication of his book.  ;D
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Offline Jetavan

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #16 on: October 24, 2012, 03:30:25 PM »

That's funny. I have the paperback of Ali Unal's Quran, and 3:35, he translates as this: "(Remember) when the wife of 'Imran entreated: 'My Lord, I have dedicated that which is in my womb to Your exclusive service...'"

This means the translation in the book is different from the one on the website. He may have changed his translation to evade some problems that he became familiar with some time after the the publication of his book.  ;D
So we both agree that the paperback version of Ali Unal's translation is very good. 8)
If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.

Offline Theophilos78

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #17 on: October 24, 2012, 03:32:37 PM »

So we both agree that the paperback version of Ali Unal's translation is very good. 8)

No comments before I read the paperback version of Ali's translation.  :D
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Offline Randa

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #18 on: October 25, 2012, 05:48:01 AM »
Ali Unal has a really good English translation of the Qur'an. It also online.

You must be kidding me! This is a terrible and biased translation designed to cover up the major mistakes of the Qur'an. Checking Surah 3:35 and Surah 11:71 would be sufficient to put this translation in the trash can.  ;D

Read this article if you want to know how some Muslims distort their Qur'an through various means and why.

Quote
A number of Muslim translators change the meaning of the Qur’an by mistranslating it into a foreign language. Although mistranslation is an act of distortion that does not affect the written text of Islam’s book, it still does change the meaning of a verse and misleads readers that cannot check the accuracy of a translation and base their perception on faulty translations, failing to understand the original meaning of a verse. Unsurprisingly, mistranslations come up whenever some translators feel obliged to cover some theological problems or charges of mistakes by modifying the meaning of a troublesome word or phrase.
http://answering-islam.org/authors/masihiyyen/quranic_distortion1.html
So your point is that the Qur'an has mistakes? If so, I'm not claiming that it doesn't, nor am I claiming that it does, but I find Ali Unal's translation to be a very modern, understandable one.

Oh the Koran has mistakes alright. Mary the sister of Moses and Aaron? Epic fail!

Offline Randa

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #19 on: October 25, 2012, 06:02:19 AM »
Ali Unal has a really good English translation of the Qur'an. It also online.

You must be kidding me! This is a terrible and biased translation designed to cover up the major mistakes of the Qur'an. Checking Surah 3:35 and Surah 11:71 would be sufficient to put this translation in the trash can.  ;D

Read this article if you want to know how some Muslims distort their Qur'an through various means and why.

Quote
A number of Muslim translators change the meaning of the Qur’an by mistranslating it into a foreign language. Although mistranslation is an act of distortion that does not affect the written text of Islam’s book, it still does change the meaning of a verse and misleads readers that cannot check the accuracy of a translation and base their perception on faulty translations, failing to understand the original meaning of a verse. Unsurprisingly, mistranslations come up whenever some translators feel obliged to cover some theological problems or charges of mistakes by modifying the meaning of a troublesome word or phrase.
http://answering-islam.org/authors/masihiyyen/quranic_distortion1.html

For comparison:

Surah 3:35 http://www.islamawakened.com/Quran/3/35/default.htm

Surah 11:71 http://www.islamawakened.com/Quran/11/71/default.htm


Offline Theophilos78

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #20 on: October 25, 2012, 08:10:49 AM »

For comparison:

Surah 3:35 http://www.islamawakened.com/Quran/3/35/default.htm

Surah 11:71 http://www.islamawakened.com/Quran/11/71/default.htm



Thanks! The differences in the translation of Surah 11:71 are more fun.  :D

Here's an article discussing the three different accounts of Isaac's birth in the Qur'an: http://answering-islam.org/authors/masihiyyen/quranic_distortion2.html
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Offline Randa

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #21 on: October 25, 2012, 09:54:08 AM »
You're welcome!

I think that site probably has verse by verse comparisons of every English translation imaginable, here's the index, bookmark it:

http://www.islamawakened.com/Quran/

Love the Answering Islam site, it kicks major ass!

Offline Theophilos78

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #22 on: October 25, 2012, 10:23:58 AM »
You're welcome!

I think that site probably has verse by verse comparisons of every English translation imaginable, here's the index, bookmark it:

http://www.islamawakened.com/Quran/

Love the Answering Islam site, it kicks major ass!
Yes! Answering-Islam is second to none.  ;D
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Offline Føroyingar

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #23 on: October 25, 2012, 10:54:16 AM »
Why would you want to read the Koran when you have Christianity?

Offline Nephi

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #24 on: October 25, 2012, 10:58:04 AM »
2. Maulana Muhammad Ali, The Holy Qur'an. Muhammad Ali was a Lahori Ahmadiyya, who hold that Muhammad was indeed the last prophet; thus, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (whom the Qadian Ahmadiyya consider to be a prophet after Muhammad) is not considered a prophet by the Lahori. An online version also exists.

So the Lahori view him as merely the Mahdi without also being a prophet or what?

Offline Jetavan

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #25 on: October 25, 2012, 11:58:29 AM »
2. Maulana Muhammad Ali, The Holy Qur'an. Muhammad Ali was a Lahori Ahmadiyya, who hold that Muhammad was indeed the last prophet; thus, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (whom the Qadian Ahmadiyya consider to be a prophet after Muhammad) is not considered a prophet by the Lahori. An online version also exists.

So the Lahori view him as merely the Mahdi without also being a prophet or what?
They view him as a reviver of Islam (http://www.muslim.org/claims/mujaddid.htm ).
If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.

Offline Nephi

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Re: The Koran in Inglish
« Reply #26 on: October 25, 2012, 01:09:55 PM »
2. Maulana Muhammad Ali, The Holy Qur'an. Muhammad Ali was a Lahori Ahmadiyya, who hold that Muhammad was indeed the last prophet; thus, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (whom the Qadian Ahmadiyya consider to be a prophet after Muhammad) is not considered a prophet by the Lahori. An online version also exists.

So the Lahori view him as merely the Mahdi without also being a prophet or what?
They view him as a reviver of Islam (http://www.muslim.org/claims/mujaddid.htm ).

Very interesting, thank you.