by M. Salahuddin
It isn’t possible to burn the Qur’an.
“Qur’an” strictly means a “recital” and it’s for a good reason. The Qur’an was revealed as a verbal experience. Embracing it is a verbal-mental process. Above all, it’s about MEANING and living according to it. Therefore the Qur’an cannot actually be burned. Since Islam began, Muslims have been committing the Qur’an to memory and such people are called “Huffaz,” (singular—Hafiz).
The word hafiz means one who protects and it is a reflection that the protected form, incapable of defilement, is that which is memorized.
The physical rendition in the form of a book is called a “mushhaf,” and while treated with respect for its content, it is not strictly the Qur’an itself. Moreover when a mushhaf deteriorates beyond usability, the required procedure is, of all things, …to burn it! The reason is that the printed word should not be defiled by being discarded or trashed.
Muslims screaming and ranting at the disrespect arising from the book’s burning, while understandably offended, are probably not truly grasping the book’s message which would counsel against such ranting.
That said, books are about communicating understanding and those who burn any book without reading and understanding its contents offer poetic demonstration of their particular form of elective ignorance.
It’s heartening to see the near universal condemnation of Pastor Terry Jones’ call for an “International Koran [sic] Burning Day” on the ninth anniversary of 9/11. Indeed, for Muslims the world over, we have a unique opportunity to demonstrate that we DO understand the theme of “they do not speak for us” offered by so many of the non-Muslim world in America in relation to Pastor Jones and his congregation of 30 people.
This stands in contrast with the failure of many Americans to understand the same sentiments when an even greater number of the world’s Muslim population asserts the same thing about 19 al-Qaeda terrorists.
It is that theme, after all, that informs the viewpoint that the Ground Zero community center and mosque project represents Islam, not the terrorists. By contrast, Islam as an underlying cause of 9/11 has been internalized by so many in America, including a few opportunists who continue to delude themselves about being political leaders.Views: 18639Share