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In the Name of God بسم الله

Ibn Al-Ja'abi

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Ibn Al-Ja'abi last won the day on February 3 2019

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About Ibn Al-Ja'abi

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    Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Umar Al-Ja'abi
  • Birthday 11/10/1997

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  1. Islam, and subsequently its active participle, Muslim, acquired a distinct meaning of "surrender" in Arabic. In other Central Semitic languages -- Hebrew and Aramaic -- the verb has more the meaning to hand something over or to complete. In Hebrew, there is no "if'aal" verb stem, rather the hiph'iil stem, in which you have של''ם appear as השלים (to complete, preform, make an end of), in Aramaic you have in some varieties a he-prefix (haphel) and in other varieties an aleph-prefix (aphel). So we find in Syriac, for example, ܐܫܠܡ meaning to deliver or hand over. So while these words do have cognates, the usage and meaning isn't the same between them (that isn't to say they have the original meaning or Arabic does, since we can't look at their ancestor to find out how it would've used the ancestor word seeing as the ancestor of these languages didn't have any records). Kafir being the active participle of kafara does have cognates in Hebrew and Aramaic, Hebrew in the Piel stem (cognate to the Arabic bab taf'iil and Aramaic pael stem) had kipper meaning to cover and of course the word Kippuur (as in Yom Kippur) is cognate with Arabic كفارة (kaffara), at least in usage as they mean the same thing. In Aramaic kfar means to deny which also has a similar conceptual meaning to the theological usage of the word in Arabic. And as for shahada, in both Hebrew and in Aramaic cognates exist, שהד (śāhēδ) and שהד or ܐܣܗܕ respectively. Though for Hebrew, I've observed the word עד is more common. And the reason for the differences between shalom and salam have to do with sound changes, in Arabic the pronunciation of sibilants (the sounds s, sh, and ś fall into) shifted around as the proto-Semitic ś was lost (yes, Arabic did lose sounds and change the pronunciation of others, e.g. s might've been more of an affricate than a sibilant, so a /ts/). So /sh/ shifted to a /s/ in Arabic, while in Hebrew and other Canaanite languages there was a shift in long /a/ to a long /o/, so the active participle shifted for example from pā'il to pō'ēl. In certain environments as well short vowels elongated as well based on stress, taking us from earlier *šalām to šālōm. There's been an excellent PhD thesis written about the development of Biblical Hebrew vowels by Benjamin Suchard, now at Leiden University, I've really breezed over complex sound changes for the sake of simplicity so if you want a full treatment of this subject, refer to him and refer to Ahmad Al Jallad (formerly at Leiden University and now I believe at Ohio) for the development of Old Arabic, also to Marijn van Putten -- the latter of which I've been in contact with for a couple of years now. I had to express disappointment that whenever we Muslims engage with other classical languages this is the sort of level of discussion. I'm going to ignore mistakes he made when talking about sound mergers and just address his main argument. Biblical Hebrew managed to preserve a distinction that Arabic lost altogether by the time of the Quran, the phoneme /ś/ (Welsh double L), but it doesn't mean that for preserving it, at least in writing, that there was somehow an edge that makes it objectively better in a way than Arabic. And the ambiguities between ḥārash to till and ḥārash to be silent are still preserved in context, which is the arbitrator in any such instance and works to obviously disambiguate the various meanings Arabic words can have as well. It doesn't really speak to the quality of the language let alone whether they are capable of carrying a "linguistic miracle". And I think this is another instance showing what makes demonstrating this a silly task, we need to count how many ways Arabic is a superior language, a concept no linguist would endorse, to show how it was capable of transmitting a linguistic miracle, and we demonstrate that by counting how many rhetorical devices are in a passage. It really lacks the sort of objectively miraculous quality that one would expect.
  2. Salams, Excellent recommendations. You really cannot get better than Seeing Islam as Others Saw It, I was going to recommend it myself -- in his book In God's Path, Hoyland applies the methodologies he discusses in Seeing Islam to construct a narrative of the early Islamic conquests, OP might also wish to read this book (though it deals with the conquests). The testimony of pseudo-Sebeos also answers the question of the OP since it demonstrates that there was a religion this Muhammad came with. OP might also be interested in The Seventh Century in Western-Syriac Chronicles by Andrew Palmer and When Christians First Met Muslims by Michael Penn. Also of interest is recent publication by Sean Anthony, Muhammad and the Empires of Faith. While they are great books to own, academic publications are sold for eye-watering prices. I recommend downloading the above books from library genesis for the moment at least. All of them should be up except for Anthony's book (which I imagine will take some time).
  3. Unfortunately most of the languages I study and work with are not spoken by people anymore. Aside from the three I checked above the other are Latin, Greek, Biblical and Rabbinic Hebrew, Syriac, and Aramaic, having begun the basics of Classical Ethiopic recently.
  4. An interesting article relevant to this thread: Viruses and Certain Religious Beliefs: What is Deadlier? It was almost impossible to predict how the events of the coronavirus pandemic would unfold. To many, what began as propaganda or scaremongering soon morphed into a living nightmare - some eventually even losing their lives to it. A virus that ravaged China, eventually set its sights on Iran, and in the space of a few weeks, it would terrorize the entire country. At the time of writing, three cities, Qom, Gilan and Mazandaran were placed on ‘red alert’, an ominous sign of the deterioration within, and a portent warning of the dangers awaiting everyone in the future (as Iranian health ministers and experts have repeatedly alluded to themselves if people do not abide by their advisory announcements). Every day, we wake up to the news that a famous politician or a government official or a big scholar has passed away or has contracted the virus. Alongside these notable personalities, are the unsung heroes, who a fortnight ago, could have never pictured what the future would hold. A number of doctors, nurses and medical staff have also succumbed to the virus; the virus evidently not selective with his victims. One can only pray that things change for the better sooner rather than later. Amidst all the chaos, a fervent debate has been sparked. What happens when the religious beliefs of some conflict with established medical teachings and what health experts of the country are advising since day one? Further, what happens when these very beliefs have the potential to expose others to grave danger? My teacher Shaykh Haider Hobbollah – who has been sending us audio recordings of both Fiqh and Uṣūl lessons since the outbreak of the virus in Qom – today (lesson #105, March 7th, 2020) dedicated the Uṣūl lesson on the on-going situation, briefly shedding light on the aforementioned dilemma. Continue Reading: https://www.iqraonline.net/viruses-and-certain-religious-beliefs-what-is-deadlier
  5. Dhu -- possessor of (masc. sing.) (a)l-Fiqaar -- the vertebrae (masc. pl. -- sing. fiqrah) This style of writing is pretentious and rather annoying. You need to present things and learn to discuss with people more maturely.
  6. It's hard for me to buy that the group of Muslims who are apathetic at the murder of Ahlul Bayt -- other than those who've began imitating Shii practices, and I can respect that there is an effort being made though it will naturally be imperfect -- and would rather have carnivals and celebrations on Ashura share in the love of Ahlul Bayt (عليه السلام) mourning their miseries. In any case, la'nah is the siira of God, the Prophet, and Ahlul Bayt and is rightly practiced on those إنقلبوا على عاقبيهم after the death of the Prophet and were cursed by the ones they oppressed. When put to the test after his death they demonstrated a decided lack of ḥeseδ/חֶסֶד, rather its opposite. I think Dr.. Sheikh Idris Samawi Hamid got it right when he said wilayah is a two-winged bird, one is walayah/tawalli and one is bara'ah/tabarri. If you clip one of the wings then the bird goes the way of the dodo.
  7. Salams, For any useful discussion on Fiqh and Usul al-Fiqh we need to understand the terms we're using. I never recite the third shahada in tashahhud, and I don't really recite it in Adhan either, but when using terms like Bid'ah we need to have a good conception of them. What exactly is a bid'ah in the context of Shii Usul, you'd need to bring precedence for your definition from the works of major scholars of Usul and with reference to any relevant hadith -- this further requires you to be able to read in at least Arabic and ideally also Persian. You also would've ideally referred to works by scholars on this, such as Sh. Sanad's al-Shahadat al-Thalitha, although this is a book defending the recitation of the third shahada. Liyakat Takim's article is a good starting point, and that's really where reviving al-Islam's blog post seems to also jump off of, but it's one article on the history and development of it, not the modern discussions in Usul as it's developed (we're not really following the same principles of Usul the Qudama did anymore, it's evolved quite a bit in the past 500 years). This certainly seems to be a bit above what the people on this thread are going to be capable of doing, but this would be the most productive discussion on the topic.
  8. Salams, Just curious, what do you understand regarding why Sunnis would believe that?
  9. It's not a Hadith, it doesn't exist in any compilation of hadith.
  10. It's from a site by an apostate who writes satirically as a hardline salafi (who would quote Shafi'I fiqh authoritatively for some reason).
  11. This seems to be the case. In the case of many Muslim areas this seems to have been the case. You could also have two levels of conversion, bottom-up and top-down. A ruler can instate Islam as a state religion and it can precipitate downwards. In the Ottoman Empire, while the Christians and Jews of the Balkans were accommodated religiously, such as with the Millet system, there was still incentives to convert since it was only Muslims who could enter the highest strata of society -- at least in most cases. Note that this obviously doesn't align with modern sensibilities of having different classes of citizen, however it hardly is that violent and repressive process you would imagine. You might also have traders interacting with Muslim traders or through mystics and missionaries, as was the case in Indo-China or the Indian subcontinent. In any case though, the process of conversion was often slow in the Muslim heartlands -- surely slower than it would've been through mass conversion. Dr.. Jim Brown presents some demographic figures in this talk, I'm not sure where he's gotten them -- I'm hoping to find out, I can't remember him citing a source, but in the case of Iran it was still 60% non-Muslim 860 AD and became 80% Muslim by 1000 AD. One must also remember that Zoroastrianism in Iran wasn't monolithic. Zoroastrianism is a very ancient faith having roots in the Iranian plateau prior to the migration of the Iranian peoples into Iran -- not in the mid first millennium like people tend to mistakenly place it following after ancient Greek estimations. A number of varieties must have developed throughout the region (not just Eran-Shahr). In the Sassanian period there was a native Zoroastrian schism which was being dealt with a considerable lack of tolerance -- read more on the Mazdakite "heresy" in Parvaneh Pourshariati's Decline and Fall of the Sassanian Empire and Touraj Daryaee's Sasanian Persia: The Rise and Fall of an Empire. You can also read a bit more about Zoroastrianism in Iran in late antiquity and Zoroastrian reactions to the advent of Islam in Patricia Crone's The Nativist Prophets of Early Islamic Iran.
  12. Salams, I've spoken with the owner of the website that he had to update the website during which the users were deleted, so anyone who is a user needs to reregister. Wassalam
  13. Salams, Addressing just how the tetragrammaton might be pronounced and not the argument you might be trying to get at -- because I'm not exactly sure what it is. There's two popular suggestions and the theory of Jehovah (or Yehowa for that matter) isn't one of them. Jehovah is a reading of the way the tetragrammaton is commonly vocalized, יְהֹוָה, with a schwa under the first yodh, a holam after the first he, and a qames gadhol under the second yodh. This however is what might be referred to as a qere in the study of the Hebrew text, it's an intended reading different from the written word (the kethib) indicated by its vowels. A common instance of this in the vocalization of the pronoun hu (he) as hiw (nonsense) to indicate reading it as hi (she), this is due to the practices of the Masoretic reading tradition. YHWH being vocalized as the Hebrew word "Adonay" (literally, "my Lords", a pluralis maiestatis -- often translated as the LORD) is a sort of qere since the vowels are indicating a different pronunciation. The vowels of Adonay are a (patah compound-)shwa, holam, then a qames gadhol, the same as the tetragrammaton. So Jehovah is not how the name is intended to be pronounced by the vowels are meant to remind the reader to say Adonay, less commonly Elohenu, and often nowadays Jews say hash-shem (the name). Now, the correct vocalization of the name is definitely not Yahuwa either -- if that was the implication. You'll commonly see it written as Yahweh, and there is some weight to that theory. In compound names you often find the name of God as "yah" or "yahu", e.g., Elijah/Eliyahu (My God is Yahu), or Abijah/Abiya (My father is Yah), and, famously, Hallelujah (Praise ye all Yah!). You also have some extrabiblical evidence, e.g. a Phoenecian inscription saying El Du Yahwi Seba'ot. El who creates the armies. You also have evidence in the Septuagint, the tetragrammaton is written ιαω (iao). Alternatively, and a theory I personally am drawn to, is that it was pronounced like Yihweh. When Moses speaks to the burning bush and asks its name, God answers ehye asher ehye (I am who I am/I will be who I will be), you have ind impf 1s hayah (to be)=I am/I will be+relative pronoun asher+repetition of the verb. If Moses were to speak about God he would use the third person, and the third person of ehye is yihyeh (he is/he will be). If the yodh mutates to a waw (which isn't unheard of), or was a waw in another non-standard dialect it just changes from yihyeh to yihweh. There's actually a sort of neat etymology there -- though not without its own problems. But it can't be yahuwa because that's Arabic, not Hebrew/Canaanite. In fact that's not even how Northern Arabic is commonly constructed. The vocative particle "ya" is found in Hijazi varieties of Arabic and spread, but in Northern Old Arabic dialects -- the Safaitic variety is the one with the most data -- the vocative particple was a ha (fa-hallaat is a commonly found phrase meaning "So, o' Laat"). In Hebrew as well the vocative particle was a ha (with a compound schwa under it as opposed to a patah). Huwa is also the Classical Arabic 3rd person masculine singular pronoun. Wallahu A'lam wassalam
  14. Yes, even by the Prophet. Zainab bt. Jahsh was his paternal cousin, his father's sister was the mother of Zainab. In later generations this was also practiced. I've myself heard him say on the mimbar that it is permitted though not necessary to do it in every generation when there are genetic diseases associated with it -- you can make of that as you will. I'm not sure any scholar has ever identified cousin marriages to be among the things to Imams permitted under taqiyya.
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