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In the Name of God بسم الله

Why Is It Called Shia'ism?

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I have just found this very intriguing statement and question, to which I found no answer...

 

SHIA'ISM IS NO new religion, creed or faith. It is nothing but the Original Islam in its original purity. It is the, very same faith which was preached and practised by the Holy Prophet without anything added to or subtracted of it.

 

Why then call it Shia'ism and not islam?

 

Where does the word Shia come from...

vs. the word sunni?

 

I assume the word sunni comes from the fact that these follow the sunnah of Muhammad?

 

Shukran for answers.

Edited by CLynn
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"shia" means follower... implying the following of Ali (as)

"sunni", as you guessed, means follower of sunnah

:)

 

Its not just called Islam because if it were, you would have no idea which group I'm talking about. People of each group think that their sect is "true islam".

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(bismillah)

 

(Salam)

 

Well, it's not called Islam because it is not a religion, per se (according to the definition modern sociologists would use), but a sect. Plus, if we were to say were are Islam, period, the other Muslims sects would argue, "Well, what are we, non-Muslims?" Just because you don't go to the same church as another guy doesn't mean you are a Christian and he isn't (the same could apply to the divide between Protestants and Catholics).

 

How the titles came about historically is this: it is widely believed that during the time of Imam Ali's  (as) caliphate, the Muslims were increasingly polarised (many argue over whether it was simply political disputes or whether they had religious connotations as well but, given that the state itself was a religious one, its almost obvious that it had a lot to do with religion - mostly its about how much of it was due to religious differences and how much, as the Sunnis believe, was because of personal differences between two companions who were both righteous or, at least, whose righteousness we can't question) and so those who sided with Imam Ali were referred to as the Shia (Followers) of Ali. We like to emphasise that the religious differences between the two groups, especially in terms of beliefs - specifically the matter of the succession of the Prophet, both political and religious - existed right after the death of the Prophet but you can safely say that the titles probably came about around the time of his caliphate.

 

I suppose the Sunnis' title, which emphasises on the Sunnah (tradition, though not exactly) of the Prophet, came about because we emphasised our reliance on the family of the Prophet as a source of guidance, they wanted to portray themselves as being the heralds of the Prophet's example (and, well, if you don't really believe he left any successors after him, that's the only source of guidance you have, anyways).

Edited by Khadim uz Zahra
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BTW, CLynn, don't assume shiite Muslims have problems with teachings of the Beloved Prophet Muhammad (s.a.a), and then God forbid, don't try to attack the term Sunnah of the Holy Prophet.. (Just a warning).. Sunni and Shia Islam have commonalities rather than the differences, and the basics every believer accepts are 1- Tawheed (Oneness of God), 2- Nubuwwah (Prophethood) (Adam being first and Muhammad being the seal) 3- Maad (Resurrection and Hereafter).. If you believe in these, you are a Muslim. And the differences in other matters (Imamah - Khilafah, etc.) determine if you are a sunni or a shia or a sufi Muslim or all or none.. And basics of all these sects are based on the Holy Quran (Both the recited Quran and the mujassam/incarnate Qurans, that is, Prophet Muhammad and his household).. So, we all accept these.. However, other than the recited Quran, we have different sources. In other words, every sect has books on traditions of the Holy Prophet, his household and companions.. (Sunnis have sources  like Bukhari, Muslim, Musnad, etc.. Shiites have sources like al-Kafi, Wasael, Tuhaf al-Uqoul, etc.) So, we all agree on following the Prophet and those who are close to him, however, we have hadith-sunnah sources on the authenticity of which there are different views and different views on who were close to the Prophet.. And, sunnis get the traditions from the bought 'scholars' of Umayyad dynasty, whereas, shiites get the traditions from the household of the Prophet.. And, the objections of shiite Muslims on sunni sources is not in the way you think.. Shia Muslims don't support the idea that what is in the so-called sahih books in sunni sources are all authentic.. And shia Muslims do not accept them because they believe Prophet Muhammad is away from such accusations.. In summary, what I mean is, that the former group registered the title of sunni to themselves, does not mean the latter group (shia) does not follow the sunnah of the beloved Prophet. The shia follow the sunnah of the Beloved Prophet, and they get their teachings from God through the Prophet Muhammad and his household as recorded in shia islamic sources..

Edited by HamzaTR
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(bismillah)

 

(Salam)

 

Well, it's not called Islam because it is not a religion, per se (according to the definition modern sociologists would use), but a sect. Plus, if we were to say were are Islam, period, the other Muslims sects would argue, "Well, what are we, non-Muslims?" Just because you don't go to the same church as another guy doesn't mean you are a Christian and he isn't (the same could apply to the divide between Protestants and Catholics).

 

How the titles came about historically is this: it is widely believed that during the time of Imam Ali's  (as) caliphate, the Muslims were increasingly polarised (many argue over whether it was simply political disputes or whether they had religious connotations as well but, given that the state itself was a religious one, its almost obvious that it had a lot to do with religion - mostly its about how much of it was due to religious differences and how much, as the Sunnis believe, was because of personal differences between two companions who were both righteous or, at least, whose righteousness we can't question) and so those who sided with Imam Ali were referred to as the Shia (Followers) of Ali. We like to emphasise that the religious differences between the two groups, especially in terms of beliefs - specifically the matter of the succession of the Prophet, both political and religious - existed right after the death of the Prophet but you can safely say that the titles probably came about around the time of his caliphate.

 

I suppose the Sunnis' title, which emphasises on the Sunnah (tradition, though not exactly) of the Prophet, came about because we emphasised our reliance on the family of the Prophet as a source of guidance, they wanted to portray themselves as being the heralds of the Prophet's example (and, well, if you don't really believe he left any successors after him, that's the only source of guidance you have, anyways).

 

Shukran Khadim uz Zahra,

You gave a nice, helpful answer.

 

"...because of personal differences between two companions who were both righteous or, at least, whose righteousness we can't question)"

 

lol - yes, part of the problem.

 

I try also to understand, why does it seem that the qur'an took a back seat, so to speak, to other things... successorship, sunnah, hadith... with more emphasis on leaders than on the 'scripture of Allah'?

 

and I find that I have confusion always about hadith and sunnah... are they different things, or is hadith, 'the tradition' for shia, and sunnah, 'the tradition' for sunni?

 

asalaam.

Thanks to all for responses.  I have read them all.

 

@Magma - I guess I just never gave much thought to where the terms Shia and Sunni originated, until I read earlier, what I posted in the OP.  I just always knew that they were a split in the faith similar to the Catholic/Protestant split in the Christian faith.  I understood how the terms Catholic and Protestant originated but not Shia and Sunni.

Edited by CLynn
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I try also to understand, why does it seem that the qur'an took a back seat, so to speak, to other things... successorship, sunnah, hadith... with more emphasis on leaders than on the 'scripture of Allah'?

 

Says someone who had always tried to prove us that Jesus is the so-called son of God and how he and his teachings are ''better''.. Interesting really..

 

I think my warning had no impact.. lol.. The leaders (including and especially Anbiya/Prophets) are of two types.. Mutlaq (Absolute) and Muqayyad (Relative) ones, in other words, infallible and fallible ones.. And infallible ones (such as Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad and Ahlulbayt) are the scriptures of God in the flesh, the Towrah, Injeel, Quran incarnate.. Walking, talking, living books of Allah.. So, no, if one accepts all the absolute leaders as guides, he is not taking the scriptures to the back seat.. Rather, he is taking examples from the embodiment of the scriptures, thus, such a person wouldn't make mistakes when studying the scriptures, because he has leaders with and through whom he can study and understand scripture as is..

 

As for the terms you asked, sunnah means tradition and it refers to the things the Prophet and Ahlulbayt did and/or approved of. And it is the perfect application of the philosophy of religion and scripture, thus, necessary..

 

Hadith means narration, and it refers to the sayings of the Prophet and Ahlulbayt.. And it is like the interpretation of Quran in most cases..

 

And succession is necessary to protect the message.. And I am sure it is stressed in Bible too.. One studying the Prophets even in the Bible, would see that how Prophets left successors behind so that they take the message and lead the believers..

 

CLynn, if you are truly willing to study Islam, please refer to the booklets we shared on this subforum.. Especially ''God, Man and the Universe'' by Mutahhari.. Then you'll have a better idea about the religion of Islam..

Edited by HamzaTR
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Shukran Khadim uz Zahra,

You gave a nice, helpful answer.

 

"...because of personal differences between two companions who were both righteous or, at least, whose righteousness we can't question)"

 

lol - yes, part of the problem.

 

I try also to understand, why does it seem that the qur'an took a back seat, so to speak, to other things... successorship, sunnah, hadith... with more emphasis on leaders than on the 'scripture of Allah'?

 

and I find that I have confusion always about hadith and sunnah... are they different things, or is hadith, 'the tradition' for shia, and sunnah, 'the tradition' for sunni?

 

asalaam.

Thanks to all for responses.  I have read them all.

 

@Magma - I guess I just never gave much thought to where the terms Shia and Sunni originated, until I read earlier, what I posted in the OP.  I just always knew that they were a split in the faith similar to the Catholic/Protestant split in the Christian faith.  I understood how the terms Catholic and Protestant originated but not Shia and Sunni.

 

I only included what you have underlined because I was portraying the Sunni view of it all and I wanted to portray as fair a picture as I could, without becoming a Sunni myself! :P We have no problem scrutinising companions - in fact, some of the people Shia have the worst regard for were companions - but that, the underlined part, is what the Sunnis' view about them is.

 

Why can't I ask the same of Christianity: why did, among a lot of other things, the Pope and whether he is infallible or not take priority over the Bible? The answer is simple: we define different groups according to their differences, not the similarities. Everyone agrees on the Qur'an so what's there to argue about? It's like asking why did God take a priority in it? Both groups believe in one God so what's there to argue about? If we'd called ourselves the ones who follow the Qur'an or something like that, the argument I brought up for being called "just Muslims" would still apply: they'd argue they were following the Qur'an, too. You can probably also argue that why do they call them Sunnis and we don't say anything? Does this mean we don't believe in following the Sunnah of the Prophet? Obviously we do. A part of it was the historical context, as I've told you and part of it was just...randomness. People just coined Protestantism and the same is true of Shi'ism.

 

Let's not use tradition or any other English words for that matter because they increase the confusion and, well, the same Arabic term may be translated differently by different people. Sunnah (which can loosely be seen to be the 'example' of the Prophet) is inclusive of, but not exclusive to, Hadith. Hadith simply refers to the saying of the Prophet. Quotes from him. What is, in Islamic jurisprudence - and other disciplines - defined as Sunnah goes beyond that to also include what he did, as well as his tacit approval (if you did something in front of him or said something and he did not condemn you for it and just remained silent, then even that is seen as his approval of your action or words being acceptable). The latter hinges on the fact that the Prophet is seen as the best of examples and Islam strongly encourages the propagation of that which is good and condemning that which is bad. So, if you had committed a sin in front of him, he'd chide you for it. If he didn't, it means what you did was acceptable. Now, often, the means we get the last two (his actions) are often also got from the same books so they are called Hadith by people, as well. I guess maybe the correct term should be riwayah (narration). I am not really sure about what the technical definition of Hadith, as is used by the scholars, is but I've asked someone so as soon as they've responded, I'll get back to you. At the end of the day, it'd still be a technical problem only, relevant only in the sphere of serious scholars who want to maintain a consistency in the language they use.

 

As far as the Sunnis and the Shias are concerned, we both see the Sunnah of the Prophet, which comprises of his words, his actions and his tacit approval to the words and actions of others, as being an authouritative source of religion and have no difference about its importance.

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mostly its about how much of it was due to religious differences and how much, as the Sunnis believe, was because of personal differences between two companions who were both righteous or, at least, whose righteousness we can't question

 

Salams Brother

 

I don't think that is the Shia view.

 

For the sake of peace among Muslims,we may not like to talk too much about it.

 

But In any dispute, only one side can be on the right and the other cannot be righteous. And they can certainly be questioned.

 

Throughout history, I think,  Shia scholars have always questioned the righteousness of the others.

  

As far as the Sunnis and the Shias are concerned, we both see the Sunnah of the Prophet, which comprises of his words, his actions and his tacit approval to the words and actions of others, as being an authouritative source of religion and have no difference about its importance.

 

Yes brother

 

But many of the hadeethes are either different or interpreted differently.

 

Important Quranic verses, relating to the Ahlul Bayt, such as Aya-e-Tatheer [33:33] and Aya-e-Muwadda [42:23],  are also interpreted differently.

Edited by IloveImamHussain
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Salams Brother

 

I don't think that is the Shia view.

 

I never said it was. If I were to quote the part of my previous post that you referred to:

 

 

how much, as the Sunnis believe, was because of personal differences between two companions who were both righteous or, at least, whose righteousness we can't question) 

 

We don't believe that, as I've already pointed out in my subsequent post but that is what the Sunnis claim is the case: all companions are righteous.

 

 

True, brother

 

But many of the hadeethes are either different or interpreted differently.

 

Important Quranic verses, such as Aya-e-Muwadda [42:23],  are also interpreted differently.

 

True. I never suggested that, either. Simply that, as far as Usul al-Fiqh is concerned, our definitions of the two words, as well as our opinion on how authouritative the Sunnah is as a source of religion, are the same, which is what I understood his question to be about.

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As for the terms you asked, sunnah means tradition and it refers to the things the Prophet and Ahlulbayt did and/or approved of. And it is the perfect application of the philosophy of religion and scripture, thus, necessary..

 

Hadith means narration, and it refers to the sayings of the Prophet and Ahlulbayt.. And it is like the interpretation of Quran in most cases..

 

And succession is necessary to protect the message.. And I am sure it is stressed in Bible too.. One studying the Prophets even in the Bible, would see that how Prophets left successors behind so that they take the message and lead the believers..

 

CLynn, if you are truly willing to study Islam, please refer to the booklets we shared on this subforum.. Especially ''God, Man and the Universe'' by Mutahhari.. Then you'll have a better idea about the religion of Islam..

 

Greetings Hamza,

 

From what you shared it sounds like tradition takes precedent over scripture.

I will try to find the booklet and the time to read.  It would help if the search function worked.  Can you provide the link?

 

Shukran.

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From what you shared it sounds like tradition takes precedent over scripture.

 

 

Hi Clynn

 

No, no, the written scripture is not always easy to understand.

 

The idea of tradition or 'hadeeth' is to expound upon the written word.

 

The problem with hadeeth is that in some books, many true hadeethes have been mixed up with doubtful ones.

 

It is a massive task separating the grain from the chaff.

 

However, it is the word of God that is important regardless where it comes from. 

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Greetings Khadim uz Zahra, (would it be ok if I shortened your name to Khadim?)

 

Do the things in the sunnah originate with the qur'an?

 

Why can't I ask the same of Christianity: why did, among a lot of other things, the Pope and whether he is infallible or not take priority over the Bible? The answer is simple: we define different groups according to their differences, not the similarities. Everyone agrees on the Qur'an so what's there to argue about? It's like asking why did God take a priority in it? Both groups believe in one God so what's there to argue about? If we'd called ourselves the ones who follow the Qur'an or something like that, the argument I brought up for being called "just Muslims" would still apply: they'd argue they were following the Qur'an, too. You can probably also argue that why do they call them Sunnis and we don't say anything? Does this mean we don't believe in following the Sunnah of the Prophet? Obviously we do. A part of it was the historical context, as I've told you and part of it was just...randomness. People just coined Protestantism and the same is true of Shi'ism.

 

^ This paragraph gave me much to contemplate.

 

I see everything in the church as coming directly from the scriptures.  The church does not follow any outside source.

But when I thought about that word, traditions, it made me think about how the church celebrates Christmas... which is a pagan tradition, changed to be a Christian celebration.  I never can decide what I think Yshwe might have to say about the tradition of Christmas.  It is a tradition that spreads good will... but I also know that Yshwe wanted us to spread good will all year long.  In other words, the birth of Yshwe, while it is a major event in the scriptures... Yshwe never said to celebrate His birth.  In fact there are few things to go on in the scriptures to indicate when His birth actually was.  There is much speculation on the matter.  It seems more likely that the Christians in Rome re-invented the pagan tradition so as to eliminate conflict and bring more people into the faith.

 

Salaam and blessings.

Edited by CLynn
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Following Magma's point (as I was thinking similarly)

 

:!!!:  OMG, CLynn finally asks an intelligent question.

 

 

 

Demonstrating once again that ShiaChat is good for intellectual rehabilitation.  :yaali:

 

 

I'm in a :wacko: mood.

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No, I'm not letting this thing go.  Seriously, 2600+ posts!!!!!????  You have been a member since Aug 2012 and you are here almost every day.  What have you been doing exactly??!!!

 

Can I assume you haven't read anything?  Haven't looked up anything?  Not only does this forum itself contain lots of info, it contains several links to online books, videos, and sites to keep you occupied for hours, days, weeks, months, years, a whole lifetime.  And with the amount of time you spend here, and if you actually cared, you would have come across it all a long time ago. 

 

You say you want to learn?  No, you don't want to learn.  You have a script and an agenda.  You want to rile people, confuse people, divide people, and waste people's time.  And we're all fools.  I feel patronized and insulted.  And when people respond to you seriously, and thinking of the time they waste, it makes me physically ill.  Literally, physically SICK. 

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Hi Clynn

 

No, no, the written scripture is not always easy to understand.

 

The idea of tradition or 'hadeeth' is to expound upon the written word.

 

The problem with hadeeth is that in some books, many true hadeethes have been mixed up with doubtful ones.

 

It is a massive task separating the grain from the chaff.

 

However, it is the word of God that is important regardless where it comes from. 

 

Greetings baqar,

 

It is difficult for me, because in my faith there is no need for any outside sources or writings... everything is in the scriptures.

 

"However, it is the word of God that is important..."

 

Yes.  This is how I feel.  I feel that, all that outside writing only adds confusion, and it seems to mean that Allah did not give a word that people could follow... it seems as though the leaders thought it was incomplete as a guidance... and they seem to rely more on outside writings than on what came from Allah himself.

 

Salaam.

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Greetings baqar,

 

It is difficult for me, because in my faith there is no need for any outside sources or writings... everything is in the scriptures.

 

"However, it is the word of God that is important..."

 

Yes.  This is how I feel.  I feel that, all that outside writing only adds confusion, and it seems to mean that Allah did not give a word that people could follow... it seems as though the leaders thought it was incomplete as a guidance... and they seem to rely more on outside writings than on what came from Allah himself.

 

Salaam.

 

:squeez:

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CLynn: Islam is easy to understand. In your own Christian idiom Islam is absolutely strict 1st and 2nd Commandment --Exodus 20, Deuteronomy 5 and what is reveal in Quran is that anyone who'd break these will not be forgiven. As reveal in Quran, this is treated the same as Murder 1 (premeditated)

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everything is in the scriptures.

 

Certainly not very clearly, Clynn.

 

Not in the Bible.

 

If it was, the Church would not have insisted that the earth is at the center of the universe.

 

And on that basis, they put the great scientist Galileo under house arrest till the end of his days because Galileo said that the earth is not the center of the universe..

 

Surely you are aware of that.

 

Yes indeed, everything is also in the Quran but some things require further clarification.

 

That is all. 

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Certainly not very clearly, Clynn.

 

Not in the Bible.

 

If it was, the Church would not have insisted that the earth is at the center of the universe.

 

And on that basis, they put the great scientist Galileo under house arrest till the end of his days because Galileo said that the earth is not the center of the universe..

 

Surely you are aware of that.

 

That is all. 

 

Greetings baqar,

 

You kind of illustrate the point I am trying to make.

 

That was the churches mistake... the mistake of men, and following the wisdom of men.

The scriptures don't say anything that I am aware of, to indicate that the earth is at the center of the universe.

asalaam and I must sign off for now.

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That was the churches mistake... 

 

The Church did not think so, at least not then.

 

They thought they were reading the Bible correctly.

 

In any case, please be aware that the Quran is not self-explanatory.

We need explanations.

 

That it how it is and that is how it was intended to be.

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It is difficult for me, because in my faith there is no need for any outside sources or writings... everything is in the scriptures.

 

 

Hello CLynn

 

Ever heard of the saying; "think outside the box" before? Don't take this offensive in any way, but basically you have been doing the complete opposite ever since you registered on this website, and hence, it is due to your bias in which you have clearly shown here  that you are unable to fully understand Islam from an objective lens as Muslims do. 

 

Again. You cannot , and I assure you, will not understand Islam from your own Christian lenses. Think about it, if I were to study your Trinitarian beliefs from an Islamic lens, do you actually think my chances of becoming a Christian  and believing in the Trinity would be high? 

 

Islam is easy and simple, but people make it complicated for themselves. You said that you are reading from time to time, fair enough. Last year, I opened a personal thread with you discussing the Noble Quran, it's eternal miracles, and your objection towards it and Islam. I have sent you a link that briefly discusses the Noble Quran, it's proof and it's call to mankind to worship the creator. It has been almost one year and you still have not responded to my message. Have you read the book Clynn? Judging from your lengthy posts, that clearly you must have put some considerable time into, ever since then till now, I am hoping you used just a little bit of that time to read it. 

Edited by Al-Najashi
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It is difficult for me, because in my faith there is no need for any outside sources or writings... everything is in the scriptures.

 

Hi Clynn

 

You surely study the Bible in translations.  Don't you?.

 

Now, the Bible consists of may be 50 or 60 books.Right?

 

The books were written in Greek, Hebrew and perhaps other languages.

 

Assuming that they are self-explanatory, can anyone be absolutely sure that the English translations are flawless ?

 

I seriously doubt it.

Please note that there are lots of words and expressions in the Quran that have several meanings or for which the usage may vary from region to region. 

 

The Quran is also heavily context-oriented.

 

How do you expect us to understand everything fully without access to the historical sources , which are not necessarily perfect ?.

 

Hope you understand now. 

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(bismillah)

 

(salam)

 

Greetings Khadim uz Zahra, (would it be ok if I shortened your name to Khadim?)

 

 

Sure, as long as the shortened version is Khadim, not Zahra, which is a feminine name and I am not one.

 

 

Do the things in the sunnah originate with the qur'an?

 

The answer to that question is almost relative, just as the question is. If you look at it from a certain angle, then, yes, they do but, taking another approach, they aren't. If you consider your own life, if you were a perfect Christian, you could say your actions originate with the Bible and, so, the same could apply to the Prophet's Sunnah, which is basically how he lived his life. It is based on the teachings on the Qur'an and further elaborates on the message that is contained within the Qur'an. Your actions and words, as in the example above, however, would still not be a part of the Bible and originate from it in the way that, say, 4 originates from 2 + 2. The relation is abstract, not absolute and tangible like a mathematical equation would be. Perhaps my following paragraphs, which will talk about "tradition" and this debate you've been having with the other members about whether the Scripture should lend on outside sources, will further clarify things for you.

 

 

But when I thought about that word, traditions, it made me think about how the church celebrates Christmas... which is a pagan tradition, changed to be a Christian celebration.  I never can decide what I think Yshwe might have to say about the tradition of Christmas.  It is a tradition that spreads good will... but I also know that Yshwe wanted us to spread good will all year long.  In other words, the birth of Yshwe, while it is a major event in the scriptures... Yshwe never said to celebrate His birth.  In fact there are few things to go on in the scriptures to indicate when His birth actually was.  There is much speculation on the matter.  It seems more likely that the Christians in Rome re-invented the pagan tradition so as to eliminate conflict and bring more people into the faith.

 

"Tradition" can be used in many ways and the way you are using it here, which is more akin to culture in many ways, is not what we mean by the Sunnah. This is why I had said we should probably refrain from using any English words if we are going to have a serious discussion on the matter because any word in English already has pre-conceived conceptions in the minds of the people who are used to it. Similarly, Arabs attach many other meanings to any word that go beyond the literal meaning - sometimes these are just subtle implications, as is the case with how, in English, different words that are synonyms may seem like they have similar meanings but people will only use a particular word for a particular situations, signifying a specific effect, and, at other times, these are much more profound, such as how Kafir meant a farmer before Islam but now is used for non-Muslims because an analogy is drawn between them, who "hide the truth", and the farmer, who "hides the seeds". This is simply human nature. It is due to this that even if the translation is perfectly accurate for the literal meaning, people will still not interpret the original word in Arabic in the same way as the translated word in English. That's why I preferred "example" as a better translation because it comes closer to what we mean by Sunnah. It is simply the Prophet's words, actions and tacit approval of others' words and actions. It has nothing to do with the Muslims themselves do and what our "traditions" (in the way you've used it here) are and he we act.

 

 

I see everything in the church as coming directly from the scriptures.  The church does not follow any outside sour

 

ce.

 

On this m

 

atter, I tend to agree with the others: the Church does not only rely on the Bible alone and nothing else. Just the fact that you have those who draw more esoteric and mystical meanings from the Bible, while others argue them to be ridiculous, must mean they are relying something else apart from the literal meanings and the words of the Bible alone.

 

What I think, however, has been missed in this debate is how what we consider "The Word of God" and "Scripture" is different from the conception of Christians. The Qur'an and the Bible are fundamentally different. This is because the Qur'an is direct speech from God, His exact Words, without any paraphrasing or any medium in between (yes, the Prophet is a medium but, in this case, he is more like a letter than a vocal messenger, in that the integrity of the words is maintained and the words don't change one bit). In fact, there are even other instances where we have a similar case of direct speech from God to mankind but they are referred to as Hadith Qudsi and not seen as part of the Qur'an. So, not only is it the literal words of God, it is also only a specific message: other instances of similar speech are not treated as the Qur'an.

 

The Bible, however, is nothing like this as it the words of the Apostles, and not even that of Jesus. Sure, the Apostles were being inspired but that's it: it's inspiration, not revelation. They still use their own words, God only guides them and makes sure there are no mistakes. If you were to look at this from Islamic perspective, in fact, large portions of Jesus' speech would also not be considered God's direct speech in the way the Qur'an is because Jesus' words, unless he is in the specific of revelation descending upon him, are just his own words and not God's Speech. (Of course, since you might consider Jesus to be God as well, you can perhaps consider his speech to be direct Speech from God Himself.) As such, if, for example, the following verse was revealed to Jesus:

 

"Thou shalt not kill" (by the way, I know this is the first commandment revealed to Moses but I am just using it as an example)

 

and, after this, he is out of the specific state of revelation and just explains the verse to his disciples, saying, "Murder is a sin", while the former "Thou shalt not kill" is what we would consider the Qur'an, "Murder is sin" would be relegated to the status of a Hadith. Since you include both Jesus' own words, along with God's direct Speech in what you call "Scripture" and we don't, there is obviously going to be a difference. While you'll also call the Prophetic interpretation and explanation, which is essential to understand God's bare words, "Scripture", your version of "Scripture" is obviously going to be much more easier to interpret independently than our version of "Scripture", which will also need Hadith for proper interpretation.

 

I guess I went to great lengths to explain a small difference but I wanted to include all the fine points and I hope I wasn't confusing, though I fear that might indeed be the case. As such, to put it simply:

 

your version of "Scripture" means

 

Scripture = Qur'an + Hadith

 

while our version of "Scripture" means

 

Scripture = Qur'an only.

Edited by Khadim uz Zahra
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Hello CLynn

 

Ever heard of the saying; "think outside the box" before? Don't take this offensive in any way, but basically you have been doing the complete opposite ever since you registered on this website, and hence, it is due to your bias in which you have clearly shown here  that you are unable to fully understand Islam from an objective lens as Muslims do. 

 

Again. You cannot , and I assure you, will not understand Islam from your own Christian lenses. Think about it, if I were to study your Trinitarian beliefs from an Islamic lens, do you actually think my chances of becoming a Christian  and believing in the Trinity would be high? 

 

Islam is easy and simple, but people make it complicated for themselves. You said that you are reading from time to time, fair enough. Last year, I opened a personal thread with you discussing the Noble Quran, it's eternal miracles, and your objection towards it and Islam. I have sent you a link that briefly discusses the Noble Quran, it's proof and it's call to mankind to worship the creator. It has been almost one year and you still have not responded to my message. Have you read the book Clynn? Judging from your lengthy posts, that clearly you must have put some considerable time into, ever since then till now, I am hoping you used just a little bit of that time to read it. 

 

Greetings

 

Yes, I have been doing alot of reading, but it includes alot of reading outside of shiachat also.  I read about so many other topics besides islam.   I do need down time as well.  The amount of free time is limited each day, each week, even each year. :)

 

I, in fact, just shared this yesterday;

        "it would take a whole lifetime to understand the faith I was born into, so I know that I will never fully understand the faith of others, and they will never fully understand mine, but that is why I think it is so important to be talking to one another and learning to get along."  :)

 

Do mean that you were having a discussion with me through private message?  Have you changed your name?  Because I think I have found our discussion and yes, it looks like it stopped June 2013?  Probably because I was reading, or intending to read, what you sent, before replying.  Something must have come up to cause me to forget to continue.  I am glad to have the reminder.

Life is a balancing... juggling... act, yes?  I have alot of balls in the air to keep in balance. :)

 

Shukran and salaam,

CLynn

Edited by CLynn
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(bismillah)

 

(salam)

 

Sure, as long as the shortened version is Khadim, not Zahra, which is a feminine name and I am not one.

 

The answer to that question is almost relative, just as the question is. If you look at it from a certain angle, then, yes, they do but, taking another approach, they aren't. If you consider your own life, if you were a perfect Christian, you could say your actions originate with the Bible and, so, the same could apply to the Prophet's Sunnah, which is basically how he lived his life. It is based on the teachings on the Qur'an and further elaborates on the message that is contained within the Qur'an. Your actions and words, as in the example above, however, would still not be a part of the Bible and originate from it in the way that, say, 4 originates from 2 + 2. The relation is abstract, not absolute and tangible like a mathematical equation would be. Perhaps my following paragraphs, which will talk about "tradition" and this debate you've been having with the other members about whether the Scripture should lend on outside sources, will further clarify things for you.

 

"Tradition" can be used in many ways and the way you are using it here, which is more akin to culture in many ways, is not what we mean by the Sunnah. This is why I had said we should probably refrain from using any English words if we are going to have a serious discussion on the matter because any word in English already has pre-conceived conceptions in the minds of the people who are used to it. Similarly, Arabs attach many other meanings to any word that go beyond the literal meaning - sometimes these are just subtle implications, as is the case with how, in English, different words that are synonyms may seem like they have similar meanings but people will only use a particular word for a particular situations, signifying a specific effect, and, at other times, these are much more profound, such as how Kafir meant a farmer before Islam but now is used for non-Muslims because an analogy is drawn between them, who "hide the truth", and the farmer, who "hides the seeds". This is simply human nature. It is due to this that even if the translation is perfectly accurate for the literal meaning, people will still not interpret the original word in Arabic in the same way as the translated word in English. That's why I preferred "example" as a better translation because it comes closer to what we mean by Sunnah. It is simply the Prophet's words, actions and tacit approval of others' words and actions. It has nothing to do with the Muslims themselves do and what our "traditions" (in the way you've used it here) are and he we act.

 

 

On this m

 

atter, I tend to agree with the others: the Church does not only rely on the Bible alone and nothing else. Just the fact that you have those who draw more esoteric and mystical meanings from the Bible, while others argue them to be ridiculous, must mean they are relying something else apart from the literal meanings and the words of the Bible alone.

 

What I think, however, has been missed in this debate is how what we consider "The Word of God" and "Scripture" is different from the conception of Christians. The Qur'an and the Bible are fundamentally different. This is because the Qur'an is direct speech from God, His exact Words, without any paraphrasing or any medium in between (yes, the Prophet is a medium but, in this case, he is more like a letter than a vocal messenger, in that the integrity of the words is maintained and the words don't change one bit). In fact, there are even other instances where we have a similar case of direct speech from God to mankind but they are referred to as Hadith Qudsi and not seen as part of the Qur'an. So, not only is it the literal words of God, it is also only a specific message: other instances of similar speech are not treated as the Qur'an.

 

The Bible, however, is nothing like this as it the words of the Apostles, and not even that of Jesus. Sure, the Apostles were being inspired but that's it: it's inspiration, not revelation. They still use their own words, God only guides them and makes sure there are no mistakes. If you were to look at this from Islamic perspective, in fact, large portions of Jesus' speech would also not be considered God's direct speech in the way the Qur'an is because Jesus' words, unless he is in the specific of revelation descending upon him, are just his own words and not God's Speech. (Of course, since you might consider Jesus to be God as well, you can perhaps consider his speech to be direct Speech from God Himself.) As such, if, for example, the following verse was revealed to Jesus:

 

"Thou shalt not kill" (by the way, I know this is the first commandment revealed to Moses but I am just using it as an example)

 

and, after this, he is out of the specific state of revelation and just explains the verse to his disciples, saying, "Murder is a sin", while the former "Thou shalt not kill" is what we would consider the Qur'an, "Murder is sin" would be relegated to the status of a Hadith. Since you include both Jesus' own words, along with God's direct Speech in what you call "Scripture" and we don't, there is obviously going to be a difference. While you'll also call the Prophetic interpretation and explanation, which is essential to understand God's bare words, "Scripture", your version of "Scripture" is obviously going to be much more easier to interpret independently than our version of "Scripture", which will also need Hadith for proper interpretation.

 

I guess I went to great lengths to explain a small difference but I wanted to include all the fine points and I hope I wasn't confusing, though I fear that might indeed be the case. As such, to put it simply:

 

your version of "Scripture" means

 

Scripture = Qur'an + Hadith

 

while our version of "Scripture" means

 

Scripture = Qur'an only.

 

Greetings Khadim,

 

:)  Yes it is entirely confusing but I appreciate your explanations.

 

I would have to agree...

we (muslims and Christians) view the world through very different lenses.  Again... this is why it is good we talk. :)

 

Salaam and blessings,

CLynn

Edited by CLynn
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Greetings Khadim,

 

:)  Yes it is entirely confusing but I appreciate your explanations.

 

I would have to agree...

we (muslims and Christians) view the world through very different lenses.  Again... this is why it is good we talk. :)

 

Salaam and blessings,

CLynn

 

I had thought so. Well, did you understand or not? Should I attempt to explain it in a simpler way, using the equation method I used in the end? I find it to be extremely easy to explain myself in that form - and, I think it must also be easier for people to understand that way (I guess because we interpret the same words differently, as I'd pointed out when I was talking about translations, but the mathematical language is simpler, universal and, perhaps, quite close to how we think, which is probably why philosophers like to use it very often).

Edited by Khadim uz Zahra
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I had thought so. Well, did you understand or not? Should I attempt to explain it in a simpler way, using the equation method I used in the end? I find it to be extremely easy to explain myself in that form - and, I think it must also be easier for people to understand that way (I guess because we interpret the same words differently, as I'd pointed out when I was talking about translations, but the mathematical language is simpler, universal and, perhaps, quite close to how we think, which is probably why philosophers like to use it very often).

 

Greetings Khadim,

 

I think you summed it up very well.  Your summarization was very helpful to pull it all together.  I can not say still, that I fully understand, or that I will ever fully understand (we have different life/learning experiences) ... learning grows slowly and I think and hope that through extended contact and discussion things will continue to grow clearer... for both sides.  I know some things have grown clearer already for me.

 

The math part of it is actually what confused me... lol ... I do not have a mathematical brain.  I am artistically oriented, whichever side of the brain that is.  I can never remember right brain/left brain. :blink:

 

Salaam and blessings,

CLynn

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Sunni denotes the movement supporting Mauwiyah during the year of Jama'a (fully written: Ahlul Sunnah w'al Jama'a) which was a year when a civil war was unleashed by this man.

Shi'ism denotes the movement supporting Ali during the Prophet's (s) life and later supporters of Hassan during the insurrection staged by Mauwiyah's supporters.

 

In more recent decades, Sunni has come to mean 'one who follows the Sunnah'. This is problematic for a number of reasons, one of which is that narratives endorsing Muslims to follow the Sunnah instead of Ahlulbayt (Kitaballah wa Sunnati) are Ummayad revisions, and considered weak.

 

 

.

Edited by Gainzz
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