Khalid Zaheer
“I am convinced about the veracity of my opinions, but I do consider it likely that they may turn out to be incorrect. Likewise, I am convinced about the incorrectness of the views different from mine, but I do concede the possibility that they may turn out to be correct.” — Imam Shafa’i

Qur'an Explains Everything ?

Question:
I would really appreciate if you could please take out few moments to answer my question which is very important for my struggle towards finding the truth.

Your school of thought is that: worship methods have reached us through the "crowd" just like Quran.

Quran-only-muslims (free-minds.org etc) quote 12:111 to conclude that Quran contains all the details and we cannot look at other sources like "crowd". According to their point of view all worship methods must be derive from Quran.

What is your take on this verse in regards to your position related to "crowd".

Response:
We have received Qur'an too from the same 'crowd' as we have received Sunnah. How are we so sure that we have received the Qur'an from Muhammad, alaihissalam? It is the fact that it is the same book which was accepted by all Muslims from day one and it has continued to be accepted likewise all over the world thereafter by all believers. Likewise is the case of Sunnah.

The wording in verse 12:111 that the Qur'an was "tafsilalli kulli shai'in" (clarification about everything) doesn't mean that it was a clarification about everything under the sky or a clarification about every religious matter. It only means that it was a clarification for every religious matter where it was needed in the domain of guidance.

An example of it is the rituals of Hajj. The Qur'an is completely silent about how, when, and where Hajj was to be done. Had the Qur'an been an explanation of every religious matter, we would have had the mention of Hajj beginning on 8th Dhul Hajj from Mina and so on. However, there is a complete silence in the Qur'an on the matter and yet the Muslim Ummah is completely unanimous about its rituals, dates, and places. This is because Hajj was already being done when the Qur'an was revealed. Only a few deviations had found their way in, which were pointed out in the Qur'an, because it was "an explanation of everything (necessary to be clarified in religion)."

The mistake of the people who say that the wording tafsilalli kulli shai'in means that Qur'an is an explanation of everything is that they have not been able to understand Qur'anic language's style whereby on numerous occasions it omits to mention words which it clearly implies. The Qur'an does so because such was the expectation of the intellectuals in a high-quality Arabic text during the times when it was revealed. Had it not been done, it wouldn't have impressed the Arabs of that time who were its immediate addressees. Oblivious of that style, unfortunately, the modern reader of the Qur'an, who is trained to appreciate a text which explicitly mentions everything intended, as in modern English and French, gives meanings to certain Qur'anic passages which were not intended by the Almighty.

I will give two examples: the Qur'an says that "everything is floating in its orbit: kullun fi falakin yasbahun" (36:40). Of course, by everything here the text means all the heavenly bodies that were being talked about. It would be ridiculous to construe by everything in this text literally everything.

Likewise, in another passage, the Qur'an says "All types of food were made halal for the Children of Israi'I except for what Yaqub forbade for himself: kullutta'amu kana hillal li Bani Isra'I'll illa ma harrama Isra'ilu 'ala nafsihi" (3:93). Of course, the verse doesn't mean every kind of food including impure food like swine etc The verse is conveying the fact that all kinds of pure food was made permissible for them except for what Yaqub, alaihissalam, forbade for himself.

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