On Feb 25, 2:06 am, Brent Meeker <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> > Believing in Divine Destiny is one of the pillars of faith, and, in
> > accordance with this belief, everything in the universe is determined
> > by God, the All-Mighty. While there are countless absolute evidences
> > of Destiny, it may be sufficient to make some introductory remarks to
> > demonstrate how important a place this pillar of faith has for the
> > whole of creation.
> > The Qur'an specifically explains that everything is predetermined, and
> > then recorded after its coming into existence, as indicated in many
> > verses like,
> > Nor anything green or withered except it is all in a Manifest Book.
> I guess the Koran's author hadn't heard about quantum randomness.
> Anyway that's not an explanation, it's just an assertion - and why should 
> anyone credit assertions written without supporting evidence by a man who 
> didn't even know that the Earth orbits the Sun.
> > This Quranic statement is confirmed by the universe,
> It's not only not confirmed, it would be impossible to confirm even if it 
> were true.
> Brent Meeker

There are hundreds of religions flourishing around the world:
Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Sikhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Bahaism,
Babism, Zoroastrianism, Mormonism, Jehovas Witnesses, Jainism,
Confucianism etc. And each of these religions claim that their
scripture is preserved from the day it was revealed (written) until
our time. A religious belief is as authentic as the authenticity of
the scripture it follows. And for any scripture to be labeled as
authentically preserved it should follow some concrete and rational

Imagine this scenario:

A professor gives a three hour lecture to his students. Imagine still
that none of the students memorized this speech of the professor or
wrote it down. Now forty years after that speech, if these same
students decided to replicate professor's complete speech word for
word, would they be able to do it? Obviously not. Because the only two
modes of preservation historically is through writing and memory.

Therefore, for any claimants to proclaim that their scripture is
preserved in purity, they have to provide concrete evidence that the
Scripture was written in its entirety AND memorized in its entirety
from the time it was revealed to our time, in a continuous and
unbroken chain. If the memorization part doesn't exist parallel to the
written part to act as a check and balance for it, then there is a
genuine possibility that the written scripture may loose its purity
through unintentional and intentional interpolations due to scribal
errors, corruption by the enemies, pages getting decomposed etc, and
these errors would be concurrently incorporated into subsequent texts,
ultimately loosing its purity through ages.

Now, of all the religions mentioned above, does any one of them
possess their scriptures in its entirety BOTH in writing AND in memory
from the day of its revelation until our time.

None of them fit this required criteria, except one: This unique
scripture is the Qur'an - revelation bestowed to Prophet Muhammad
(p.b.u.h) 1,418 years ago, as a guidance for all of humankind.


Lets analyze the claim of the preservation of the Quran...


'In the ancient times, when writing was scarcely used, memory and oral
transmission was exercised and strengthened to a degree now almost
unknown' relates Michael Zwettler.(1)

Prophet Muhammad (S): The First Memorizer

It was in this 'oral' society that Prophet Muhammad (S) was born in
Mecca in the year 570 C.E. At the age of 40, he started receiving
divine Revelations from the One God, Allah, through Archangel Gabriel.
This process of divine revelations continued for about 22.5 years just
before he passed away.

Prophet Muhammad (S) miraculously memorized each revelation and used
to proclaim it to his Companions. Angel Gabriel used to refresh the
Quranic memory of the Prophet each year.

'The Prophet (S) was the most generous person, and he used to become
more so (generous) particularly in the month of Ramadan because
Gabriel used to meet him every night of the month of Ramadan till it
elapsed. Allah's Messenger (S) use to recite the Qur'an for him. When
Gabriel met him, he use to become more generous than the fast wind in
doing good'. (2)

'Gabriel used to repeat the recitation of the Qur'an with the Prophet
(S) once a year, but he repeated it twice with him in the year he
(Prophet) died'. (3)

The Prophet himself use to stay up a greater part of the night in
prayers and use to recite Quran from memory.

Prophet's Companions: The First Generation Memorizers

Prophet Muhammad (S) encouraged his companions to learn and teach the

'The most superior among you (Muslims) are those who learn the Qur'an
and teach it'. (4)

'Some of the companions who memorized the Quran were: 'Abu Bakr, Umar,
Uthman, Ali, Ibn Masud, Abu Huraira, Abdullah bin Abbas, Abdullah bin
Amr bin al-As, Aisha, Hafsa, and Umm Salama'. (5)

'Abu Bakr, the first male Muslim to convert to Islam used to recite
the Quran publicly in front of his house in Makka'. (6)

The Prophet also listened to the recitation of the Qur'an by the
Companions: 'Allah Apostle said to me (Abdullah bin Mas'ud): "Recite
(of the Quran) to me". I said: "Shall I recite it to you although it
had been revealed to you?!" He Said: "I like to hear (the Quran) from
others". So I recited Sura-an-Nisa' till I reached: "How (will it be)
then when We bring from each nation a witness and We bring you (O
Muhammad) as a witness against these people?"' (4:41) 'Then he said:
"Stop!" Behold, his eyes were shedding tears then'. (7)

Many Quranic memorizers (Qurra) were present during the lifetime of
the Prophet and afterwards through out the then Muslim world.

'At the battle of Yamama, many memorizers of the Quran were martyred.
'Narrated Zaid bin Thabit al Ansari, who was one of those who use to
write the Divine Revelations: Abu Bakr sent me after the (heavy)
casualties among the warriors (of the battle) of Yamama (where a great
number of Qurra were killed). Umar was present with Abu Bakr who said:
"Umar has come to me and said, the people have suffered heavy
casualties on the day of (the battle of) Yamama, and I am afraid that
there will be some casualties among the Qurra (those who memorized the
entire Quran) at other place..."' (8)

'Over the centuries of the Islamic Era, there have arisen throughout
the various regions of the Islamic world literally thousands of
schools devoted specially to the teaching of the Quran to children for
the purpose of memorization. These are called, in Arabic, katatib
(singular: Kuttab). It is said that the Caliph 'Umar (634-44) first
ordered the construction of these schools in the age of the great
expansion'. (9)

Second Generation Memorizers:

"...Quranic schools were set up everywhere. As an example to
illustrate this I may refer to a great Muslim scholar, of the second
Muslim generation, Ibn 'Amir, who was the judge of Damascus under the
Caliph Umar Ibn 'Abd Al-Aziz. It is reported that in his school for
teaching the Quran there were 400 disciples to teach in his absence".

Memorizers in Subsequent Generations:

The Number of Katatib and similar schools in Cairo (Egypt) alone at
one time exceeded two thousand. (11)

Currently both in the Muslim and non-Muslim countries thousands of
schools with each instructing tens of hundreds of students the art of
memorizing the entire Quran. In the city of Chicago itself, there are
close to 40+ Mosques, with many of them holding class for children
instructing them the art of Quranic memorization.

Further Points of Consideration:

* Muslims recite Quran from their memory in all of their five daily
prayers. * Once a year, during the month of Fasting (Ramadan), Muslims
listen to the complete recitation of the Quran by a Hafiz (memorizer
of the entire Quran) * It's a tradition among Muslims that before any
speech or presentation, marriages, sermons, Quran is recited.


Quran is the only book, religious or secular, on the face of this
planet that has been completely memorized by millions. These
memorizers range from ages 6 and up, both Arabic and non-Arabic
speakers, blacks, whites, Orientals, poor and wealthy.

Thus the process of memorization was continuous , from Prophet

Muhammad's (S) time to ours with an unbroken chain.

"The method of transmitting the Quran from one generation to the next
by having he young memorize the oral recitation of their elders had
mitigated somewhat from the beginning the worst perils of relying
solely on written records..." relates John Burton (12)

"This phenomenon of Quranic recital means that the text has traversed
the centuries in an unbroken living sequence of devotion. It cannot,
therefore, be handled as an antiquarian thing, nor as a historical
document out of a distant past. The fact of hifz (Quranic
Memorization) has made the Qur'an a present possession through all the
lapse of Muslim time and given it a human currency in every generation
never allowing its relegation to a bare authority for reference alone"
reflects Kenneth Cragg (13)


Written Text of the Quran

Prophet's Time:

Prophet Muhammad (S) was very vigilant in preserving the Quran in the
written form from the very beginning up until the last revelation. The
Prophet himself was unlettered, did not knew how to read and write,
therefore he called upon his numerous scribes to write the revelation
for him. Complete Quran thus existed in written form in the lifetime
of the Prophet.

Whenever a new revelation use to come to him, the Prophet would
immediately call one of his scribes to write it down.

'Some people visited Zaid Ibn Thabit (one of the scribes of the
Prophet) and asked him to tell them some stories about Allah's
Messenger. He replied: "I was his (Prophet's) neighbor, and when the
inspiration descended on him he sent for me and I went to him and
wrote it down for him..." (14)

Narrated by al-Bara': There was revealed 'Not equal are those
believers who sit (home) and those who strive and fight in the cause
of Allah' (4:95). The Prophet said: 'Call Zaid for me and let him
bring the board, the ink pot and scapula bone.' Then he (Prophet)
said: 'Write: Not equal are those believers...' (15)

Zaid is reported to have said: 'We use to compile the Qur'an from
small scraps in the presence of the Apostle'. (16)

'The Prophet, while in Madinah, had about 48 scribes who use to write
for him'. (17)

Abdullah Ibn 'Umar relates:... 'The Messenger of Allah (S) said: "Do
not take the Qur'an on a journey with you, for I am afraid lest it
should fall into the hands of the enemy"' (18)

During the Prophet's last pilgrimage, he gave a sermon in which he
said: 'I have left with you something which if you will hold fast t it
you will never fall into error - a plain indication, the Book of God
(Quran) and the practice of his Prophet...' (19)

'Besides the official manuscripts of the Quran kept with the Prophet,
many of his companions use to possess their own written copies of the
revelation'. (20)

'A list of Companions of whom it is related that they had their own
written collections included the following: Ibn Mas'ud, Ubay bin Ka'b,
Ali, Ibn Abbas, Abu Musa, Hafsa, Anas bin Malik, Umar, Zaid bin
Thabit, Ibn Al-Zubair, Abdullah ibn Amr, Aisha, Salim, Umm Salama,
Ubaid bin Umar'. (21)

'The best known among these (Prophet's Scribes) are: Ibn Masud, Ubay
bin Kab and Zaid bin Thabit'. (22)

'Aisha and Hafsa, the wives of the Prophet had their own scripts
written after the Prophet had died'. (23)


The complete Quran was written down in front of the Prophet by several
of his scribes and the companions possess their own copies of the
Quran in the Prophet's lifetime. However the written material of the
Quran in the Prophet's possession were not bounded between the two
covers in the form of a book, because the period of revelation of the
Qur'an continued up until just a few days before the Prophet's death.
The task of collecting the Qur'an as a book was therefore undertaken
by Abu Bakr, the first successor to the Prophet.

Written Quran in First Generation:

At the battle of Yamama (633 CE), six months after the death of the
Prophet, a number of Muslims, who had memorized the Quran were killed.
Hence it was feared that unless a written official copy of the Quran
were prepared, a large part of revelation might be lost.

Narrated Zaid bin Thabit al-Ansari, one of the scribes of the
Revelation: Abu Bakr sent for me after the casualties among the
warriors (of the battle) of Yamama (where a great number of Qurra
(memorizers of the Quran, were killed). Umar was present with Abu Bakr
who said: "Umar has come to me and said, the people have suffered
heavy casualties on the day of (the battle) of Yamama, and I am afraid
that there will be some casualties among the Qurra at other places,
whereby a large part of the Quran may be lost, unless you collect it
(in one manuscript, or book)...so Abu Bakr said to me (Zaid bin
Thabit): You are a wise young man and we do not suspect you (of
telling lies or of forgetfulness) and you used to write the Divine
Inspiration for Allah's Apostle. Therefore, look for the Qur'an and
collect it (in one manuscript)'...So I started locating the Quranic
material and collecting it from parchments, scapula, leafstalks of
date palms and from the memories of men (who know it by
heart)..." (24)

Now, a committee was formed to under take the task of collecting the
written Quranic material in the form of a book. The committee was
headed by Zaid bin Thabit, the original scribe of the Prophet, who was
also a memorizer of the complete Quran.

'...Zaid bin Thabit had committed the entire Quran to memory...' (25)

The compilers in this committee, in examining written material
submitted to them, insisted on very stringent criteria as a safeguard
against any errors.

1. The material must have been originally written down in the presence
of the Prophet; nothing written down later on the basis of memory
alone was to be accepted. (26) 2. The material must be confirmed by
two witnesses, that is to say, by two trustworthy persons testifying
that they themselves had heard the Prophet recite the passage in
question. (27)

'The manuscript on which the Qur'an was collected, remained with Abu
Bakr till Allah took him unto Him, and then with Umar (the second
successor), till Allah took him unto Him, and finally it remained with
Hafsa, 'Umar's daughter (and wife of the Prophet)'. (28)

This copy of the Quran, prepared by the committee of competent
companions of the Prophet (which included Memorizers of the Quran) was
unanimous approved by the whole Muslim world. If they committee would
have made a error even of a single alphabet in transcribing the Quran,
the Qurra (memorizers of the Quran) which totaled in the tens of
hundreds would have caught it right away and correct it. This is
exactly where the neat check and balance system of preservation of the
Quran comes into play, but which is lacking for any other scripture
besides the Quran.

Official written copy by Uthman

The Quran was originally revealed in Quraishi dialect of Arabic. But
to facilitate the people who speak other dialects, in their
understanding and comprehension, Allah revealed the Quran finally in
seven dialects of Arabic. During the period of Caliph Uthman (second
successor to the Prophet) differences in reading the Quran among the
various tribes became obvious, due to the various dialectical
recitations. Dispute was arising, with each tribe calling its
recitation as the correct one. This alarmed Uthman, who made a
official copy in the Quraishi dialect, the dialect in which the Quran
was revealed to the Prophet and was memorized by his companions. Thus
this compilation by Uthman's Committee is not a different version of
the Quran (like the Biblical versions) but the same original
revelation given to the Prophet by One God, Allah.

Narrated Anas bin Malik: Hudhaifa bin Al-Yaman came to Uthman at the
time when the people of Sham (Syria) and the people of Iraq were
waging war to conquer Armenia and Azherbijan. Hudhaifa was afraid of
their differences in the recitation of the Quran, so he said to
Uthman, 'O chief of the Believers! Save this nation before they differ
about the Book (Quran) as Jews and Christians did before'. So Uthman
sent a message to Hafsa saying, 'Send us the manuscripts of the Quran
so that we may compile the Quranic materials in perfect copies and
return the manuscripts to you'. Hafsa sent it to Uthman. 'Uthman then
ordered Zaid bin Thabit, 'Abdullah bin Az-Zubair, Said bin Al-As and
Abdur Rahman bin Harith bin Hisham to rewrite the manuscripts in
perfect copies. Uthman said to the three Quraishi men, 'In case you
disagree with Zaid bin Thabit on any point in the Quran, then write it
in their (Quraishi) tongue'. They did so, and when they had written
many copies, Uthman sent to every Muslim province one copy of what
they had copied and ordered that all the other Quranic materials
whether written in fragmentary manuscripts or whole copies, be
burnt..." (29)

Again a very stringent criteria was set up by this Committee to
prevent any alteration of the Revelation.

1. The earlier recension (Original copy prepared by Abu Bakr) was to
serve as the principal basis of the new one. (30) 2. Any doubt that
might be raised as to the phrasing of a particular passage in the
written text was to be dispelled by summoning persons known to have
learned the passage in question from the Prophet. (31) 3. Uthman
himself was to supervise the work of the Council. (32)

When the final recension was completed, Uthman sent a copy of it to
each of the major cities of Makka, Damascus, Kufa, Basra and Madina.

The action of Uthman to burn the other copies besides the final
recension, though obviously drastic, was for the betterment and
harmony of the whole community and was unanimously approved by the
Companions of the Prophet.

Zaid ibn Thabit is reported to have said: "I saw the Companions of
Muhammad (going about) saying, 'By God, Uthman has done well! By God,
Uthman has done well!" (33)

Another esteemed Companion Musab ibn Sad ibn Abi Waqqas said: "I saw
the people assemble in large number at Uthman's burning of the
prescribed copies (of the Quran), and they were all pleased with his
action; not a one spoke out against him". (34)

Ali ibn Abu Talib, the cousin of the Prophet and the fourth successor
to the Prophet commented: "If I were in command in place of Uthman, I
would have done the same". (35)

Of the copies made by Uthman, two still exist to our day. One is in
the city of Tashkent, (Uzbekistan) and the second one is in Istanbul
(Turkey). Below is a brief account of both these copies:

1. The copy which Uthman sent to Madina was reportedly removed by the
Turkish authorities to Istanbul, from where it came to Berlin during
World War I. The Treaty of Versailles, which concluded World War I,
contains the following clause:

'Article 246: Within six months from the coming into force of the
present Treaty, Germany will restore to His Majesty, King of Hedjaz,
the original Koran of Caliph Othman, which was removed from Madina by
the Turkish authorities and is stated to have been presented to the ex-
Emperor William II". (36)

'This manuscript then reached Istanbul, but not Madina (Where it now
resides)'. (37)

2. The second copy in existence is kept in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. 'It
may be the Imam (master) manuscript or one of the other copies made at
the time of Uthman'. (38)

It Came to Samarkand in 890 Hijra (1485) and remained there till 1868.
Then it was taken to St.Petersburg by the Russians in 1869. It
remained there till 1917. A Russian orientalist gave a detailed
description of it, saying that many pages were damaged and some were
missing. A facsimile, some 50 copies, of this mushaf (copy) was
produced by S.Pisareff in 1905. A copy was sent to the Ottoman Sultan
'Abdul Hamid, to the Shah of Iran, to the Amir of Bukhara, to
Afghanistan, to Fas and some important Muslim personalities. One copy
is now in the Columbia University Library (U.S.A.). (39)

'The Manuscript was afterwards returned to its former place and
reached Tashkent in 1924, where it has remained since'. (40)


'Two of the copies of the Qur'an which were originally prepared in the
time of Caliph Uthman, are still available to us today and their text
and arrangement can be compared, by anyone who cares to do, with any
other copy of the Quran, be it in print or handwritten, from any place
or period of time. They will be found identical'. (41)

It can now be proclaimed, through the evidences provided above, with
full conviction and certainty that the Prophet memorized the entire
Quran, had it written down in front of him through his scribes, many
of his companions memorized the entire revelation and in turn possess
their own private copies for recitation and contemplation. This
process of dual preservation of the Quran in written and in the memory
was carried in each subsequent generation till our time, without any
deletion, interpolation or corruption of this Divine Book.

Sir Williams Muir states, " There is otherwise every security,
internal and external, that we possess the text which Muhammad himself
gave forth and used". (42)

Sir William Muir continues, "There is probably no other book in the
world which has remained twelve centuries (now fourteen) with so pure
a text". (43)

This divine protection provided to the Quran, the Last Reveled Guide
to Humanity, is proclaimed by One God in the Quran:

We* (Allah) have, without doubt, send down the Message; and We will
assuredly Guard it (from corruption)' (Quran - Chapter 15, Verse 9).
*('We' is the plural of Majesty, and not the Christian plural of

Compare this divine and historical preservation of the Quran with any
literature, be it religious or secular and it becomes evident that
none possess similar miraculous protection. And as states earlier, a
belief is as authentic as the authenticity of its scripture. And if
any scripture is not preserved, how can we be certain that the belief
arising out of this scripture is divine or man made, and if we are not
sure about the belief itself, then our salvation in the hereafter
would be jeopardized. Thus this above evidence for the protection of
the Quran from any corruption is a strong hint about its divine
origin. We request all open hearted persons to read, understand and
live the Quran, the 'Manual for Mankind'.

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