THE SYRO ARAMAIC READING OF THE PDF

Thesis[ edit ] The work advances the thesis that critical sections of the Quran have been misread by generations of readers and Muslim and Western scholars, who consider Classical Arabic the language of the Quran. It is not just the findings of this study that have led to this insight. Namely, in the framework of this study an examination of a series of hadith sayings of the Prophet has identified Aramaisms that had either been misinterpreted or were inexplicable from the point of view of Arabic. This would lead one to assume that Mecca was originally an Aramaic settlement. Confirmation of this would come from the name Mecca Macca itself, which one has not been able to explain etymologically on the basis of Arabic.

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Thesis[ edit ] The work advances the thesis that critical sections of the Quran have been misread by generations of readers and Muslim and Western scholars, who consider Classical Arabic the language of the Quran. It is not just the findings of this study that have led to this insight. Namely, in the framework of this study an examination of a series of hadith sayings of the Prophet has identified Aramaisms that had either been misinterpreted or were inexplicable from the point of view of Arabic.

This would lead one to assume that Mecca was originally an Aramaic settlement. Confirmation of this would come from the name Mecca Macca itself, which one has not been able to explain etymologically on the basis of Arabic. Arabic diacritics were added around the turn of the eighth century on orders of al-Hajjaj ibn Yusuf , governor of Iraq — Luxenberg claimed that the Quran "contains much ambiguous and even inexplicable language.

However, the assumption behind their endeavours has always been, according to him, that any difficult passage is true, meaningful, and pure Arabic, and that it can be deciphered with the tools of traditional Muslim scholarship. Luxenberg argues that the Quran was not originally written exclusively in Arabic but in a mixture with Syriac , the dominant spoken and written language in the Arabian peninsula through the eighth century.

What is meant by Syro-Aramaic actually Syriac is the branch of Aramaic in the Near East originally spoken in Edessa and the surrounding area in Northwest Mesopotamia and predominant as a written language from Christianization to the origin of the Koran. For more than a millennium Aramaic was the lingua franca in the entire Middle Eastern region before being gradually displaced by Arabic beginning in the 7th century.

Hence, if a particular Quranic word or phrase seems "meaningless" in Arabic, or can be given meaning only by tortuous conjectures, it makes sense — he argues — to look to Syriac as well as Arabic. Luxenberg also argues that the Quran is based on earlier texts, namely Syriac lectionaries used in Christian churches of Syria, and that it was the work of several generations who adapted these texts into the Quran we know today.

His proposed methodology[ edit ] Check whether a plausible, overlooked explanation can be found in Tafsir al-Tabari completed ca. Check if the Arabic expression has a homonymous root in Syriac or Aramaic with a different meaning that fits the context. Check to see if there is a Syriac word which would make sense of the passage. Experiment with different placements of the diacritics which indicate vowels, etc. Perhaps there is a version of the rasm that will give an Arabic word that makes sense of the passage.

If there is no Arabic word that works, repeat the experiment and look for Syriac words. Translate the Arabic phrase into Syriac and check the Syrian literature for a phrase that might have been translated literally into Arabic; the original meaning in Syriac may make more sense than the resulting Arabic phrase such translated phrases are called morphological calques. Check to see if there is a corresponding phrase in the old Syrian literature, which may be an analog of an Arabic phrase now lost.

Check to see if it is a correct Arabic expression written in Arabic script, but in Syriac orthography. He says that many Christian descriptions of Paradise describe it as abounding in pure white grapes. This sparked much ridicule and insult from the Western press who allege that "suicide bombers would be expecting beautiful women and getting grapes.

By this reading, Muhammad is not the last of the prophets, but a witness to those prophets who came before him. But using Syriac instead of Arabic for almost the same Arabic rasm , he put him down upon his forehead, changes the meaning to he tied him to the firewood".

The belt was a sign of chastity in the Christian world. More must be offered to convince anybody as to the mechanisms by which such a strong cultural and linguistic contact could have occurred". Gabriel Said Reynolds complains that Luxenberg "consults very few sources" -- only one exegete Abu Jafar al-Tabari -- and seldom integrates the work of earlier critical studies into his work; "turns from orthography to phonology and back again"; and that his use of Syriac is "largely based on modern dictionaries".

Luxenberg is pushing the etymological fallacy to its natural conclusion.

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