Author Topic: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26  (Read 1907 times)

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Offline Trebor135

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A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« on: March 31, 2014, 10:58:21 AM »
Hi all,

I have a question to do with Qur'an chapter (sura) 19, verse (`aya) 26:

http://quran.com/19/26

Is it possible that the word for "fasting" is here used metaphorically, in reference to a vow of silence, rather than literally, in reference to food and drink? Most of the translations use the term "fast/fasting", but one uses "abstention", which is less specific.

I ask because of the problem that came to my attention in an article by a Protestant Christian apologist, Jochen Katz, arguing that Islam's conception of God casts him as dishonest:

"In Sura 19:26 God tells Mary to say that she is fasting when in fact she is eating water and dates."

http://www.answering-islam.org/Why-not/32deception.html

I would like to confirm whether or not Allah is, in fact, indirectly instructing Maryam to speak falsehood in this scenario.

Shukran,
T.

Offline ialmisry

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Re: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2014, 02:36:40 PM »
Hi all,

I have a question to do with Qur'an chapter (sura) 19, verse (`aya) 26:

http://quran.com/19/26

Is it possible that the word for "fasting" is here used metaphorically, in reference to a vow of silence, rather than literally, in reference to food and drink? Most of the translations use the term "fast/fasting", but one uses "abstention", which is less specific.

I ask because of the problem that came to my attention in an article by a Protestant Christian apologist, Jochen Katz, arguing that Islam's conception of God casts him as dishonest:

"In Sura 19:26 God tells Mary to say that she is fasting when in fact she is eating water and dates."

http://www.answering-islam.org/Why-not/32deception.html

I would like to confirm whether or not Allah is, in fact, indirectly instructing Maryam to speak falsehood in this scenario.

Shukran,
T.
The meaning can be stretched to just abstaining from something, although it is odd that the vow is not to speak when He tells her to tell someone something. 
btw, the "man" in this verse is "human," not specifically "male."
Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth

Offline Jetavan

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Re: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2014, 02:42:41 PM »
Hi all,

I have a question to do with Qur'an chapter (sura) 19, verse (`aya) 26:

http://quran.com/19/26

Is it possible that the word for "fasting" is here used metaphorically, in reference to a vow of silence, rather than literally, in reference to food and drink? Most of the translations use the term "fast/fasting", but one uses "abstention", which is less specific.

I ask because of the problem that came to my attention in an article by a Protestant Christian apologist, Jochen Katz, arguing that Islam's conception of God casts him as dishonest:

"In Sura 19:26 God tells Mary to say that she is fasting when in fact she is eating water and dates."

http://www.answering-islam.org/Why-not/32deception.html

I would like to confirm whether or not Allah is, in fact, indirectly instructing Maryam to speak falsehood in this scenario.

Shukran,
T.
Eating dates is part of the fasting process during Ramadan. Each evening during Ramadan, one breaks the daily fast by eating dates.
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 Trebor135

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Re: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2014, 04:52:12 PM »
Hi all,

I have a question to do with Qur'an chapter (sura) 19, verse (`aya) 26:

http://quran.com/19/26

Is it possible that the word for "fasting" is here used metaphorically, in reference to a vow of silence, rather than literally, in reference to food and drink? Most of the translations use the term "fast/fasting", but one uses "abstention", which is less specific.

I ask because of the problem that came to my attention in an article by a Protestant Christian apologist, Jochen Katz, arguing that Islam's conception of God casts him as dishonest:

"In Sura 19:26 God tells Mary to say that she is fasting when in fact she is eating water and dates."

http://www.answering-islam.org/Why-not/32deception.html

I would like to confirm whether or not Allah is, in fact, indirectly instructing Maryam to speak falsehood in this scenario.

Shukran,
T.
Eating dates is part of the fasting process during Ramadan. Each evening during Ramadan, one breaks the daily fast by eating dates.

Your response puzzles me. How does the event I'm referring to have anything to do with Ramadan? The mother of God lived six-seven centuries before the rise of Islam and thus the institution of this month of fasting.

Offline Trebor135

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Re: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2014, 04:58:14 PM »
The meaning can be stretched to just abstaining from something,

OK. So you think Katz wasn't making a very strong point there.

Quote
although it is odd that the vow is not to speak when He tells her to tell someone something. 

Haha, true.

What do you make of the incident referred to by the Christian apologist from Qur'an chapter 8? And do you know where else we could read about it (in the Hadith or elsewhere)?

Offline Jetavan

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Re: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #5 on: April 01, 2014, 05:03:41 PM »
Hi all,

I have a question to do with Qur'an chapter (sura) 19, verse (`aya) 26:

http://quran.com/19/26

Is it possible that the word for "fasting" is here used metaphorically, in reference to a vow of silence, rather than literally, in reference to food and drink? Most of the translations use the term "fast/fasting", but one uses "abstention", which is less specific.

I ask because of the problem that came to my attention in an article by a Protestant Christian apologist, Jochen Katz, arguing that Islam's conception of God casts him as dishonest:

"In Sura 19:26 God tells Mary to say that she is fasting when in fact she is eating water and dates."

http://www.answering-islam.org/Why-not/32deception.html

I would like to confirm whether or not Allah is, in fact, indirectly instructing Maryam to speak falsehood in this scenario.

Shukran,
T.
Eating dates is part of the fasting process during Ramadan. Each evening during Ramadan, one breaks the daily fast by eating dates.

Your response puzzles me. How does the event I'm referring to have anything to do with Ramadan? The mother of God lived six-seven centuries before the rise of Islam and thus the institution of this month of fasting.
The Qur'an may be speaking of a type of fasting from sunrise to sunset; Ramadan, then, would simply be a specific form, revealed by Muhammad, of a previously existing practice of sunrise-to-sunset fasting.
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: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2014, 05:41:47 PM »

OK. So you think Katz wasn't making a very strong point there.


This article seems out of date.

According to the verse, Miryam was asked to keep a fast of silence. Besides, she was instructed to fast after returning to her folk. Thus, her fasting period began after she had eaten dates and drunk water.

Actually, this narrative is a distorted version of an account in the Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew.

And it came to pass on the third day of their journey, while they were walking, that the blessed Mary was fatigued by the excessive heat of the sun in the desert; and seeing a palm tree, she said to Joseph: Let me rest a little under the shade of this tree. Joseph therefore made haste, and led her to the palm, and made her come down from her beast. And as the blessed Mary was sitting there, she looked up to the foliage of the palm, and saw it full of fruit, and said to Joseph: I wish it were possible to get some of the fruit of this palm. And Joseph said to her: I wonder that you say this, when you see how high the palm tree is; and that you think of eating of its fruit. I am thinking more of the want of water, because the skins are now empty, and we have none wherewith to refresh ourselves and our cattle. Then the child Jesus, with a joyful countenance, reposing in the bosom of His mother, said to the palm: O tree, bend your branches, and refresh my mother with your fruit. And immediately at these words the palm bent its top down to the very feet of the blessed Mary; and they gathered from it fruit, with which they were all refreshed. And after they had gathered all its fruit, it remained bent down, waiting the order to rise from Him who had commanded it to stoop. Then Jesus said to it: Raise yourself, O palm tree, and be strong, and be the companion of my trees, which are in the paradise of my Father; and open from your roots a vein of water which has been hid in the earth, and let the waters flow, so that we may be satisfied from you. And it rose up immediately, and at its root there began to come forth a spring of water exceedingly clear and cool and sparkling. And when they saw the spring of water, they rejoiced with great joy, and were satisfied, themselves and all their cattle and their beasts. Wherefore they gave thanks to God. http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0848.htm

Apparently, the writer of Surah 19 fell into confusion and tampered with the chronology of the events in the original account. According to the Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew, Miryam left Bethlehem in a hurry along with Yosif and Infant Yeshua after the magi arrived from the East and declared Yeshua's birth. According to Surah 19, however, Miryam left her town in a hurry and went to a distant place with Yeshua in her womb after a messenger came to her in the East and announced Yeshua's nativity.


http://answering-islam.org/authors/masihiyyen/19mary_apocrypha.html
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Offline Theophilos78

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Re: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2014, 05:45:22 PM »
The Qur'an may be speaking of a type of fasting from sunrise to sunset; Ramadan, then, would simply be a specific form, revealed by Muhammad, of a previously existing practice of sunrise-to-sunset fasting.

This sounds unlikely as according to the chronological order of the Qur'an, Surah 19 precedes Surah 2, where the Islamic fasting rules were first prescribed.
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Offline Trebor135

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Re: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2014, 03:22:16 AM »
This article seems out of date.

Why do you think so?

Quote
According to the verse, Miryam was asked to keep a fast of silence. Besides, she was instructed to fast after returning to her folk. Thus, her fasting period began after she had eaten dates and drunk water.

Actually, this narrative is a distorted version of an account in the Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew.

The idea that the Qur'an engages in plagiarism is an interesting one. If only we could find a way to demonstrate it conclusively. The stories are different in some respects, which automatically enables Muslim apologists to argue that the similarities are coincidental. Or they can simply say that, even if the stories were identical, the Qur'an just so happens to confirm true accounts that have too readily been rejected by those (supposed) Scripture-corrupting trinitarian Christians but which somehow survived in the apocryphal literature penned in later centuries.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2014, 03:26:36 AM by Trebor135 »

Offline Theophilos78

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Re: A question about Qur'an chapter 19:26
« Reply #9 on: April 02, 2014, 04:20:43 AM »
Why do you think so?

because his argument is rather weak. He must have written that article in his early phase of critique.  :D

The idea that the Qur'an engages in plagiarism is an interesting one. If only we could find a way to demonstrate it conclusively. The stories are different in some respects, which automatically enables Muslim apologists to argue that the similarities are coincidental.

Muslim apologists would keep arguing even if we demonstrated Muhammad's plagiarism conclusively. We have a similar case of plagiarism in Surah 3. The narrative of Miryam's birth and childhood in this chapter was obviously taken from the earliest non-canonical Gospel of Infancy: Gospel of James (Protoevangelion). The most significant alteration applied to the original story by the Quranic author concerns the name of Miryam's father. Although the Gospel of James and all other non-canonical Infancy Gospels unanimously taught that Miryam's biological father's name was Joachim (Yoachim/Ioachim), the writer of Surah 3 changed it into Imran, which is the Arabic version of the Hebrew name Amram. Yet Amram was the name of the other Miryam, who was the sister of Aaron and Moses! It cannot be a coincidence that in Surah 19:28 Virgin Miryam's folk address her as the Sister of Aaron!

Besides, the stories in the non-canonical Gospels of Infancy are superior to their version in the Qur'an. There are fewer details and more ambiguities in the Quranic version of those stories. Certain differences actually point at the Quranic author's confusion/misunderstandings. For example, the account of Miryam's pregnancy and delivery in the Qur'an implies that Miryam left her town as soon as she conceived Yeshua and kept walking to a distant place until she was in labour, during which she was miraculously provided with fresh dates and water under a tree in a deserted place. Thus, the reader is expected to believe that Miryam's journey took 9 months! Obviously, this uncanny implication was a natural result of the author's distorting the correct chronology of the events in the Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew.

Here is an article refuting a Muslim apologist's claims on the originality of the accounts in the Qur'an: http://answering-islam.org/authors/masihiyyen/rebuttals/zawadi/infancy_gospels.html

Or they can simply say that, even if the stories were identical, the Qur'an just so happens to confirm true accounts that have too readily been rejected by those (supposed) Scripture-corrupting trinitarian Christians but which somehow survived in the apocryphal literature penned in later centuries.

In order to substantiate this claim, they must bring a text that is in line with the Qur'an and precedes all the extant texts of the apocryphal Gospels of Infancy. Otherwise, we are free to assert that the Qur'an presents the distorted versions of those original stories. (Similarities = plagiarism, differences = distortion)
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