Thursday, December 23, 2010

St Thomas Aquinas and the Quran

Below are the brief comments of St. Thomas Aquinas on Mohammad and his teachings, from his Summa Contra Gentiles, part 1, #6.
He (Mohammed) seduced the people by promises of carnal pleasure to which the concupiscence of the flesh urges us. His teaching also contained precepts that were in conformity with his promises, and he gave free rein to carnal pleasure. In all this, as is not unexpected; he was obeyed by carnal men.
While on his way with a thousand of his men to invade the city “Domat Al-Jandal,” “he attacked their cattle and shepherds, capturing some, and others escaped. The news reached the people of Domat Al-Jandal so they scattered [i.e. they deserted their city]. The Apostle of Allah came to their city center and did not find anyone, so he stayed there many days, sending troops and dividing armies but he did not capture anyone.”[1]

The biography of Ibn Hisham records that Mohammad was involved in 27 wars (Ar: Ghazwa), and sent 38 raids or fighting groups.[2] All of these were done in a period of approximately 10 years, which means that he fought or ordered a war or a raid once every two months, taking all booty he could. The scenario was pretty much similar to the story above, and often included genocides. (Ibnu Hisham records that Mohammad killed (most probably by beheading) 600 or 700 person from the people of Qurayzah (also ‘Quraida’; a Jewish tribe), & records that some say 800 or 900.[3])

Hadith number in Sahih Muslim (Arabic) 3295 “… 'Umar bin Al-Khattab who was saying: What has happened to the people (that they are retreating)? I said: It is the Decree of Allah. Then the people returned. (The battle ended in a victory for the Muslims) and the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) sat down (to distribute the spoils of war). He said: Any one who has killed an enemy and can bring evidence to prove it will get his belongings.”[4]

And He made you heirs of their lands, their houses, and their goods, and of a land which ye had not frequented (before). And Allah has power over all things.” (AL-AHZAB/33, 27)

From Rags to Riches:

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 53, Number 386: Narrated Jubair bin Haiya: … Al-Mughira replied: “We are some people from the Arabs; we led a hard, miserable, disastrous life: we used to suck the hides and the date stones from hunger; we used to wear clothes made up of fur of camels and hair of goats[5]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 24, Number 499: Narrated Aisha: A lady along with her two daughters came to me asking (for some alms), but she found nothing with me except one date which I gave to her and she divided it between her two daughters, and did not eat anything herself, and then she got up and went away…[6]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 24, Number 497: Narrated Abu Masud Al-Ansar: Whenever Allah's Apostle (p.b.u.h) ordered us to give in charity, we used to go to the market and work as porters and get a Mudd (a special measure of grain) and then give it in charity. (Those were the days of poverty) and to-day some of us have one hundred thousand.[7]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 53, Number 390: Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah: Allah's Apostle once said to me, "If the revenue of Bahrain came, I would give you this much and this much." When Allah's Apostle had died, the revenue of Bahrain came, and Abu Bakr announced, "Let whoever was promised something by Allah's Apostle come to me." So, I went to Abu Bakr and said, "Allah's Apostle said to me, 'If the revenue of Bahrain came, I would give you this much and this much." On that Abu Bakr said to me, "Scoop (money) with both your hands." I scooped money with both my hands and Abu Bakr asked me to count it. I counted it and it was five-hundred (gold pieces). The total amount he gave me was one thousand and five hundred (gold pieces.)

Narrated Anas: Money from Bahrain was brought to the Prophet. He said, "Spread it in the Mosque." It was the biggest amount that had ever been brought to Allah's Apostle. In the meantime Al-'Abbas came to him and said, "O Allah's Apostle! Give me, for I gave the ransom of myself and Aqil." The Prophet said (to him), "Take." He scooped money with both hands and poured it in his garment and tried to lift it, but he could not and appealed to the Prophet, "Will you order someone to help me in lifting it?" The Prophet said, "No." Then Al-'Abbas said, "Then will you yourself help me carry it?" The Prophet said, "No." Then Al 'Abbas threw away some of the money, but even then he was not able to lift it, and so he gain requested the Prophet "Will you order someone to help me carry it?" The Prophet said, "No." Then Al-'Abbas said, "Then will you yourself yelp me carry it?" The Prophet said, 'No." So, Al-'Abbas threw away some more money and lifted it on his shoulder and went away. The Prophet kept on looking at him with astonishment at his greediness till he went out of our sight. Allah's Apostle did not get up from there till not a single Dirham remained from that money.[8]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 53, Number 388: Narrated Juwairiya bin Qudama At-Tamimi: We said to 'Umar bin Al-Khattab, Jo Chief of the believers! Advise us." He said, "I advise you to fulfill Allah's Convention (made with the Dhimmis) as it is the convention of your Prophet and the source of the livelihood of your dependents (i.e. the taxes [jizya] from the Dhimmis.)"[9]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 53, Number 386: Narrated Jubair bin Haiya: 'Umar sent the Muslims to the great countries to fight the pagans. When Al-Hurmuzan embraced Islam, 'Umar said to him. "I would like to consult you regarding these countries which I intend to invade." Al-Hurmuzan said, "Yes, the example of these countries and their inhabitants who are the enemies of the Muslims, is like a bird with a head, two wings and two legs; If one of its wings got broken, it would get up over its two legs, with one wing and the head; and if the other wing got broken, it would get up with two legs and a head, but if its head got destroyed, then the two legs, two wings and the head would become useless. The head stands for Khosrau, and one wing stands for Caesar and the other wing stands for Faris. So, order the Muslims to go towards Khosrau." So, 'Umar sent us (to Khosrau) appointing An-Numan bin Muqrin as our commander. When we reached the land of the enemy, the representative of Khosrau came out with forty-thousand warriors, and an interpreter got up saying, "Let one of you talk to me!" Al-Mughira replied, "Ask whatever you wish." The other asked, "Who are you?" Al-Mughira replied, "We are some people from the Arabs; we led a hard, miserable, disastrous life: we used to suck the hides and the date stones from hunger; we used to wear clothes made up of fur of camels and hair of goats, and to worship trees and stones. While we were in this state, the Lord of the Heavens and the Earths, Elevated is His Remembrance and Majestic is His Highness, sent to us from among ourselves a Prophet whose father and mother are known to us. Our Prophet, the Messenger of our Lord, has ordered us to fight you till you worship Allah Alone or give Jizya (i.e. tribute); and our Prophet has informed us that our Lord says:-- "Whoever amongst us is killed (i.e. martyred), shall go to Paradise to lead such a luxurious life as he has never seen, and whoever amongst us remain alive, shall become your master."[10]

Allowing adultery:
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 62, Number 13o: Narrated 'Abdullah: We used to participate in the holy battles led by Allah's Apostle and we had nothing (no wives) with us. So we said, "Shall we get ourselves castrated?" He forbade us that and then allowed us to marry women with a temporary contract (2) and recited to us: -- 'O you who believe ! Make not unlawful the good things which Allah has made lawful for you, but commit no transgression.' (5.87)[11]

Marry four women, plus an infinite number of sex slaves
…marry of the women, who seem good to you, two or three or four; and if ye fear that ye cannot do justice (to so many) then one (only), or (the captives) that your right hands possess.” (AN-NISA/4, 3)

Imam Al-Ghazali records that Ali was the most ‘ascetic’ of Mohammad’s companions, and had four women and twenty seven sex slaves!! (i.e. concubines taken as war captives).[12]

Divorce & remarriage of the same woman is allowed three times:
A divorce is only permissible twice: after that, the parties should either hold Together on equitable terms, or separate with kindness.” (AL-BAQARA/, 229)

War spoils, sex slaves
Sahih Muslim, Book 008, Number 3325: Anas (Allah be pleased with him) reported that Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) set out on an expedition to Khaibar and we observed our morning prayer in early hours of the dawn. The Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) then mounted and so did Abu Talha ride, and I was seating myself behind Abu Talha. Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) moved in the narrow street of Khaibar… As he entered the habitation he called: Allah-o-Akbar (Allah is the Greatest). Khaibar is ruined. And when we get down in the valley of a people evil is the morning of the warned ones. He repeated it thrice. In the meanwhile the people went out for their work, and said: By Allah, Muhammad (has come). Abd al-'Aziz or some of our companions said: Muhammad and the army (have come). He said: We took it (the territory of Khaibar) by force, and there were gathered the prisoners of war. There came Dihya and he said: Messenger of Allah, bestow upon me a girl of the prisoners. He said: Go and get any girl. He made a choice for Safiyya daughter of Huyayy (b. Akhtab). There came a person to Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) and said: Apostle of Allah, you have bestowed Safiyya bint Huyayy, the chief of Quraiza and al-Nadir, upon Dihya and she is worthy of you only. He said: Call him along with her. So he came along with her. When Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) saw her he said: Take any other woman from among the prisoners…”[13]

Please refer to these websites:

Killing is the way to Heaven
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 52, Number 80i: Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah's Apostle said, "Allah welcomes two men with a smile; one of whom kills the other and both of them enter Paradise. One fights in Allah's Cause and gets killed. Later on Allah forgives the killer who also gets martyred (In Allah's Cause)."[14]

So if you commit a murder (and consequently all other sins), all you have to do to get to Heaven, is go and fight in Islamic armies with the intention of being “martyred” for Allah’s cause. But if you don’t get killed, no worries: you get war spoils, female (& child) sex slaves.

Thus, by promising material wealth and allowing them to indulge in all sorts of human passions, Mohammad gathered followers.

As for the truths [in his teachings], he only brought forward those that could be grasped by the natural ability of anyone with a very modest intelligence. Indeed, the truths that he taught he mingled with many fables and with doctrines of the greatest falsity.

He did not bring forth any signs produced in a supernatural way, which alone fittingly gives witness to divine inspiration; for a visible action that can be only divine reveals an invisibly inspired teacher of truth.
We see Mohammad denied any miracle from the beginning: “And We refrain from sending the signs, only because the men of former generations treated them as false.” (AL-ISRA/17, 59) Still, the people challenged him more: “They say: ‘We shall not believe in thee, until thou cause a spring to gush forth for us from the earth, Or (until) thou have a garden of date trees and vines, and cause rivers to gush forth in their midst, carrying abundant water; Or thou cause the sky to fall in pieces, as thou sayest (will happen), against us; or thou bring Allah and the angels before (us) face to face:  Or thou have a house of gold; or thou ascend up into heaven, and even then we will put no faith in thine ascension till thou bring down for us a book that we can read.’ Say: ‘Glory to my Lord! Am I aught but a man,-- a messenger?’” (ibid. 90-93) The same vein is continued in AL-HIJR/15, and even Mohammad was frustrated because they kept scoffing at him and he could not produce any miracle v. 97: “We do indeed know how thy heart is distressed at what they say.” The same is in many other chapters, we restrict ourselves to these instances: “And if their aversion is grievous unto thee, then, if thou canst, seek a way down into the earth or a ladder unto the sky that thou mayst bring unto them a portent (to convince them all)! - If Allah willed, He could have brought them all together to the guidance” (AL-ANAAM/6, 35) Al-Jalalayn[15] explains: “the meaning is that you will not be able to do this.”[16] Commenting on (HUD/11, 12), Al-Jalalayn says: “You are but a warner, and yours is only to convey [the Message], not to produce what they have requested”[17] i.e. the miracles. In the same chapter, v. 57: “Say: Surely I have manifest proof from my Lord and you call it a lie; I have not with me that which you would hasten” Al-Tabary comments: “They said of the Quran: (these are but) muddled dreams; nay, he hath but invented it; nay, he is but a poet. Let him bring us a sign even as those of old (who were Allah's messengers) were sent (with portents)” (AL-ANBIYA/21, 5); so God said to his prophet: answer them that miracles are in the hands of God not yours, and you are but a messenger, with nothing to do but to deliver what you’ve been sent to deliver.”[18] And again, (AL-ANAAM/6, 109): “And they swear by Allah with the strongest of their oaths, that if a sign came to them they would most certainly believe in it. Say: Signs are only with Allah; and what should make you know that when it comes they will not believe?” Al-Tabary explains: “They said: O Mohammad, you tell us that Moses had a staff with which he hit the rock causing 12 rivers to gush out thereof, and you tell us that Isa resurrected the dead… so give us some miracle to believe you ! So the prophet said: ‘What would you like me to perform?’ They said: “Turn a rock [or a mountain] into gold,’ he replied: ‘If I do that, will you believe me?’ they said: ‘Yes, by God, if you do that we will certainly follow you, all of us!’ So the prophet started praying, then Gabriel came to him and said: ‘You are granted what you wish; if you wish, it will turn into gold. But if they will not believe the miracle we send, we will surely punish them; or if you wish, leave them [i.e. without miracles] until those who will repent of them repent. So he [Mohammad] said: ‘Let it be until those who will repent of them repent.’”[19] Not only was Mohammad unable and unwilling to bring any sensory miracle, he also admitted his inability to utter any prophecy or know the future: “Say: I do not say to you, I have with me the treasures of Allah, nor do I know the unseen, (Ar: al-ghayb) nor do I say to you that I am an angel; I do not follow aught save that which is revealed to me.” (ibid. v. 50) And: “Say: ‘I have no power over any good or harm to myself except as Allah willeth. If I had knowledge of the unseen, I should have multiplied all good, and no evil should have touched me: I am but a warner, and a bringer of glad tidings to those who have faith.’” (AL-ARAF/7, 188) I tell you not that with me are the treasures of Allah, nor do I know what is hidden, nor claim I to be an angel. Nor yet do I say, of those whom your eyes do despise that Allah will not grant them (all) that is good: Allah knoweth best what is in their souls: I should, if I did, indeed be a wrong-doer.” (HUD/11, 31)

Despite Mohammad’s repeated admissions that he is unable to perform any sort of miracles, some Muslims, knowing that no prophecy is established without miracles, have claimed that the Quran is Mohammad’s miracle. See the end of this article for a refutation.

On the Contrary, Mohammed said that he was sent in the power of his arms - which are signs not lacking even to robbers and tyrants.
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 7, Number 331: Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah: The Prophet said, "I have been given five things which were not given to any one else before me. Allah made me victorious by awe, (by His frightening my enemies) for a distance of one month's journey…”[20]
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 2, Number 24: Narrated Ibn 'Umar: Allah's Apostle said: "I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight against the people until they testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that Muhammad is Allah's Apostle, and offer the prayers perfectly and give the obligatory charity, so if they perform that, then they save their lives and property from me...[21]
Sahih Bukhari & Musnad Ahmad: Narrated Ibn 'Umar that the Prophet said, "My livelihood is under the shade of my spear [i.e. from the war spoils], and he who disobeys my orders will be humiliated and pay the Jizya [obligatory tax]."[22]

What is more, no wise men, men trained in things divine and human, believed in him from the beginning.
Even the ‘naive’ Pagans did not believe him:
“Nay, say they, (these are but) muddled dreams; nay, he hath but invented it; nay, he is but a poet. Let him bring us a portent even as those of old (who were Allah's messengers) were sent (with portents).” (AL-ANBIYA/21, 5)
They say: ‘We shall not believe in thee, until thou cause a spring to gush forth for us from the earth, Or (until) thou have a garden of date trees and vines, and cause rivers to gush forth in their midst, carrying abundant water; Or thou cause the sky to fall in pieces, as thou sayest (will happen), against us; or thou bring Allah and the angels before (us) face to face:  Or thou have a house of gold; or thou ascend up into heaven, and even then we will put no faith in thine ascension till thou bring down for us a book that we can read...’” (AL-ISRA/17, 90-93)
And they swear by Allah with the strongest of their oaths, that if a sign came to them they would most certainly believe in it. Say: Signs are only with Allah; and what should make you know that when it comes they will not believe?(AL-ANAAM/6, 109)

Those who believed in him were brutal men and desert wanderers, utterly ignorant of all divine teaching, through whose numbers Mohammed forced others to become his follower's by the violence of his arms.
Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 32, Number 4022: Narrated AbuMusa al-Ash'ari: AbuBurdah said: My father said to me: My son, if you had seen us while we were with the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) and the rain had fallen on us, you would have thought that our smell was the smell of the sheep.[23]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 52, Number 47: Narrated Anas bin Malik: Allah's Apostle used to visit Um Haran bint Milhan, who would offer him reals. Um-Haram was the wife of Ubada bin As-Samit. Allah's Apostle, once visited her and she provided him with food and started looking for lice in his head...[24]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 9, Book 89, Number 299: Narrated Ibn 'Umar:
The Prophet sent (an army unit under the command of) Khalid bin Al-Walid to fight against the tribe of Bani Jadhima and those people could not express themselves by saying, "Aslamna," [i.e. we have accepted Islam] but they said, "Saba'na! Saba'na! " [i.e. we have changed our religion] Khalid kept on killing some of them and taking some others as captives, and he gave a captive to everyone of us and ordered everyone of us to kill his captive…”[25]

Sahih Muslim, Book 019, Number 4294: It has been reported from Sulaiman b. Buraid through his father that when the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) appointed anyone as leader of an army or detachment he would especially exhort him to fear Allah and to be good to the Muslims who were with him. He would say: Fight in the name of Allah and in the way of Allah. Fight against those who disbelieve in Allah. Make a holy war, do not embezzle the spoils; do not break your pledge; and do not mutilate (the dead) bodies; do not kill the children. When you meet your enemies who are polytheists, invite them to three courses of action. If they respond to any one of these, you also accept it and withhold yourself from doing them any harm. Invite them to (accept) Islam; if they respond to you, accept it from them and desist from fighting against them. Then invite them to migrate from their lands to the land of Muhajirs [emigrants] and inform them that, if they do so, they shall have all the privileges and obligations of the Muhajirs. If they refuse to migrate, tell them that they will have the status of Bedouin Muslims and will be subjected to the Commands of Allah like other Muslims, but they will not get any share from the spoils of war or Fai' [booty] except when they actually fight with the Muslims (against the disbelievers). If they refuse to accept Islam, demand from them the Jizya [obligatory tax payed by non-Muslims under Muslim rule]. If they agree to pay, accept it from them and hold off your hands. If they refuse to pay the tax, seek Allah's help and fight them.[26]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 53, Number 392: Narrated Abu Huraira: While we were in the Mosque, the Prophet came out and said, "Let us go to the Jews" We went out till we reached Bait-ul-Midras. He said to them, "If you embrace Islam, you will be safe. You should know that the earth belongs to Allah and His Apostle, and I want to expel you from this land. So, if anyone amongst you owns some property, he is permitted to sell it, otherwise you should know that the Earth belongs to Allah and His Apostle."[27]

Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 52, Number 73: Narrated 'Abdullah bin Abi Aufa: Allah's Apostle said, "Know that Paradise is under the shades of swords."[28]

 Nor do divine pronouncements on part of preceding prophets offer him any witness.
On the contrary, he perverts almost all the testimony of the Old and the New Testaments by making them into a fabrication of his own, as can be seen by anyone who examines his law. It was, therefore, a shrewd decision on his part to forbid his followers to read the Old and New Testaments, lest these books convict him of falsity.
It is thus clear that those who place faith in his words believe foolishly."

Different Quran Versions:
Textual Variants in the Quran:
Is the Quran miraculous?
Are there any reasons of fittingness why the Quran should be Mohammad’s miracle?

God’s word is changed:
Mohammad and Satan

[15] Tafsir al-Jalalayn is one of the most significant exegeses for the study of the Qur’an. Composed by the two “Jalals” -- Jalal al-Din al-Mahalli (d. 864 ah / 1459 ce) and his pupil Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti (d. 911 ah / 1505 ce) The English translation is taken from

Answering Islamic claims concerning the Quran

Claim #1: It seems that the prophethood of Mohammad has for a miracle the Quran.

Reasons for fittingness:
Myth #1: Each prophet is given signs that are suitable to his audience, for Moses had an audience of the best sorcerers, so he was given powers to excel them in extraordinary signs, Christ was sent to a society that was most advanced in medicine, so He was given powers to heal, Mohammad was sent to a society of the most eloquent men, so it was necessary that his miracle would be one of eloquence.

On the contrary, Firstly, we do not know what ignorant invented this fable, for sorcery had always been widespread in almost all nations, and Egyptians were not known for sorcery as much as it was for their technological advancements in areas such as building, (ex: pyramids, temples) medicine, (ex: mummification). Secondly, Palestine was anything but the best in medicine, and cannot even be compared with other places in the field of medicine such as Greece or Persia. As for eloquence, it is a pure myth that the Arabs were the most eloquent nation (and a indication of a belief in Arab supremacy), for almost the only form of literature we have from them is rhyming poetry, not prose or theatre plays, nor polemics or the other forms of rhetoric. And how will we compare them with the eloquence of Syriacs like St. Ephrem of Nisibis, or the eloquence of Greece, when Aristotle (whom many Arabs later fell in love with, after his works were translated into Arabic by Syriacs) had written an eternal work on the art of rhetoric, and he was born nearly 950 years before Mohammad was! Or what shall we say about Antioch, wherefrom came the likes of St. John Chrysostom, who was called “golden mouth” for his eloquence? Or what shall we say about Beirut, called the mother of legislations, which graduated the best lawyers and speakers for the world? This myth can only deceive the uneducated. Furthermore, what shall we say about Dante, or Shakespeare? If eloquence is a miracle, then they have a right to claim prophethood. And if every artistic masterpiece (not that the Quran is one) is a miracle, then Beethoven is the first among prophets, and he even composed many symphonic masterpieces though he was deaf! The same goes for the paintings and carvings of Michelangelo, and all other great artists. Furthermore, we do not see why the Quran is more eloquent than the poems of Imru' al-Qais or the oration of the Christian priest Qis Ben Sa'ida which pre-date Mohammad, or the brilliant poetry of Al-Mutanabby (who surely knew that if eloquence is a sign of prophethood, he had a right to claim it, and so he did. Yet, unlike Mohammad who used trickery to escape from his enemies, Al-Motanabby's enemies caught him, so he was imprisoned and then released when he submitted that he will not claim prophecy anymore), or even Abu Alaa' el-Ma'arry, who, struck with smallpox and blindness since his infancy, wrote 10701 verses of unmatchable poetry and eloquence, in his “Luzumiyyat”, and using a very difficult technique in which had been unprecedented. And if the reader will say does not understand Arabic (or archaic Arabic) and thus cannot appreciate and judge the quality of these people's works, the same applies for the Quran, so why do you take for granted that it's most eloquent when you cannot even read or understand it, let alone compare it with other works?

Myth #2: Former nations were sensual, and humanity was in its infancy, that is why God gave them miracles that correspond to the senses. As for the nation of Arabs, they were so advanced and intellectual that God granted them an intellectual miracle, which is the Quran.

On the contrary, This is another myth, put forward by Jalal ed-Din As-Sayouti, and one that depicts a belief in Arab supremacy. It is enough for a reply to remind As-Sayouti that the Arabs themselves called the period before Islam "Aj-jahiliyya" which means "[the age of] ignorance" (!), and Muslims themselves have been the greatest propagandists for the ignorance and barbarism of the Arabs before Mohammad in order to prove that he brought positive changes to their lives (famous examples are that Arabs practiced burying their infant daughters alive because they preferred boys, and had nothing to do in their lives other than to raid each other's tribes to seize green land to feed their cattle). The truth is that the Arabs did not know philosophy or any advanced intellectual sciences of the like until a few hundred years after Mohammad, when the sciences of the nations were translated to Arabic (ironically, not by Arabs, but by Syriacs!). As for Greece, she had known philosophy and intellectual advancement more than 1000yrs before Mohammad was born. Moreover, even after Islam and after the philosophical works of Aristotle et al. were translated into Arabic, we do not find any great Arabic philosopher. For example, Ibnu Sina (Avicenna) was Persian, like Al-Faraby and Al-Ghazzali. Even the man who wrote down the rules for the Arabic language & poetry, named "Sibaweih", was a Persian!

Now we shall study whether the Quran is truly a miracle.

Proposition #1: Mohammad challenged his audience, saying: “If the whole of mankind and Jinns were to gather together to produce the like of this Qur'an, they could not produce the like thereof (Ar: mithlihi), even if they backed up each other with help and support,” (AL-ISRA/17, 88) [1] and nobody has been able to produce something like it, therefore it is a miracle.

On the contrary, (1) Mohammad himself admitted that there is something like the Quran: “Say: Have you considered if it is from Allah, and you disbelieve in it, and a witness from among the children of Israel has borne witness of one like it (Ar: mithlihi),” (AL-AHQAF/46 ,10) Commentators explain that this refers to the Torah of Moses.[2] Thus, the Jews and Christians do have what is like the Quran, by the testimony of the Quran, and the challenge is thus refuted.

Also see (scroll down to Meeting the challenge), where you will find several responses to the challenge.

I answer that, Firstly, Muslims have already decided & firmly believe that nothing can be equally eloquent to the Quran, therefore no matter what is put forward, they will immediately dismiss it, because they have decided a priori that nothing is as eloquent as the Quran. It’s a revolving door.
Secondly, what we said in our reply to Myth #2 can also be repeated here, for we have sufficiently demonstrated how artistic beauty cannot be a miracle, and furthermore, it is in itself unique and inimitable, because it is the result of an individual’s creative work and unique personality which can only be found in him.
Thirdly, if the Quran were Mohammad’s miracle, he would’ve said that to his challengers (who did not save any opportunity to demand miracles from him), but in all such stories that the Quran reports, its position regarding miracles is negative (we have mentioned a few of these instances in the introduction).
Fourthly, if the Quran were Mohammad’s miracle, and the greatest miracle in the history of mankind, he would’ve repeated that throughout all his days of preaching, considering the fact that the Meccans were continuously ridiculing him and asking him to bring a miracle, and many times he was frustrated because of this. (cf. AL-HIJR/15, 97; HUD/11, 12 etc.) However, we find this challenge given first in the 50th chapter (Sura) that was given in Mecca! That was only one year before he left Mecca, that is, 12 years after he allegedly received the first message from the angel (!) After the challenge in (AL-ISRA/17, 88), he challenged them in (YUNUS/10, 38) to “bring then a Sura like unto it,” then in (HUD/11, 13):Bring ye then ten suras (i.e. chapters) invented, like unto it,” and the last one came in the first chapter he gave in Al-Madina[3], (AL-BAQARA/2, 23) “produce a Sura like thereunto.” This was the last challenge ever to be given. Thus, if the Quran was Mohammad’s greatest miracle, and the greatest miracle ever given to humanity by the last and best prophet, why did he first mention it after 12yrs he received his message, in a period of approximately 2yrs, only four times?!
Fifhtly, Muslims themselves cannot agree what exactly is miraculous about the Quran, and this is enough proof that it cannot be a miracle which is, by nature, self-imposing. In fact, As-Sayyouti mentioned[4] 18 different opinions as to what aspect is miraculous about the Quran, and this is itself enough proof that it isn’t miraculous, since miracles are self-evident.

We shall now look at the most common claimed aspect of miraculousness in the Quran.
Myth #1: The Quran is miraculous in terms of its eloquence.

On the contrary, Firstly, Islam claims to be a religion for every human on the earth, the miracles of its prophet should be accessible to every human. However, to appreciate this alleged miracle of eloquence, every human person has to learn Arabic, and not only that, but he has to master the language, keeping in mind that the archaic Arabic of the Quran in the 7th century is very different from the formal Arabic of today, and even modern formal Arabic is not spoken by any nation in its daily life, but rather dialects are used, which are more or less different from formal Arabic. Thus, there are approximately 1,000,000,000 Muslims today, approximately 200,000,000[5] of which are Arabs. That means approximately 80% of Muslims worldwide don’t understand Arabic, and so are clueless as to the eloquence or the lack thereof in the Quran! And of the Muslim Arabs, approximately 40% are illiterate[6], and most of the rest have not specialized in studying the Quran's archaic Arabic in order to appreciate this alleged miracle of eloquence. Thus all these Muslims cannot appreciate or judge this claimed miracle. In sum, a miracle is for everybody, but the Quran is only for the elite of specialists in archaic Arabic.[7]
Furthermore, any fair reader will notice the inadequacy of the Quran compared to what should be a divinely eloquent book:

Inadequacy #1: Grammatical errors
These following mistakes are so embarrassing; we do not understand how people can still claim the Quran is a miracle when it has such flagrant errors of grammar:
They said: These are most surely two magicians.” (TA-HA/20, 63) Transliterated in Arabic, Qaloo inna hathani lasahirani,” the correct form is “hathayni” not “hathani.

Inna allatheena amanoo waallatheena hadoo waalssabi-oona(AL-MAEDA/5, 69). The correct form is “waalssabi-ina.”  (The correct form appears in AL-BAQARA/2, 62 and AL-HAJJ/22, 17)

Lakini alrrasikhoona fee alAAilmi minhum waalmu/minoona yu/minoona bima onzila ilayka wama onzila min qablika waalmuqeemeena alssalata” (AN-NISA/4, 62). The correct form is “waalmuqeemouna.

“la yanalu AAahdee alththalimeena” (AL-BAQARA/2, 124) The correct form is “alththalimouna.

waalmoofoona biAAahdihim itha AAahadoo waalssabireena fee alba/sa-i” (AL-BAQARA/2, 177) The correct form: “waalssabirouna.”

As-Sajistani reports: “Narrated by Abdullah, from Amr bin Abdullah al-Awdi, from Abu Moaawiya, from Hisham ben Aarwa, from his father, he said: I asked Aisha [Mohammad’s wife] on the Quran’s grammatical error in (TA-HA/20, 63), (AN-NISA/4, 62) and (AL-MAEDA/5, 69), and she said: O, son of my sister, this is the work of scribes, they have written wrongly.” (Al-Masahif, part 2, p. 34 ) This actually opens up the subject of the Quran’s corruption, which we will cover later on.

For more grammatical errors, please see

Inadequacy #2: Plagiarism

We quote from “Fayd Al Qadir Fi Sharh Aj-jamii As-saghir,”[8] the renowned explanation of As-Sayyouti’s “Aj-jamii As-saghir.”

“[The pre-Islamic Arabic poet] Imru’ Al-Qais spoke of the Quran before it was sent down [i.e. from God], he said:
‘The man wishes it were winter during summer, and when winter comes, he rejects it’
‘He is not pleased with one state, cursed be man! How ungrateful is he!’[9]
And he said:
‘The hour is nigh, and the moon is cleft asunder, because of a gazelle that hunted my heart and ran away’[10]
And he said:
‘When the earth is shaken with her (violent) shaking, and the earth brings forth her burdens’
‘The people rise to their prophets; to the day of judgment they see themselves [going?]’
‘To be judged by a righteous judge, [the result will be] either for them or against them’[11]

Inadequacy #3: Contradictions
Muslims have a science which deals with the subject of contradictions in the Quran and Mohammad’s teachings, it is called the science of “the abrogating and abrogated” verses (Ar: An-nasekh wal mansoukh). For, according to Muslims & the Quran, the contradictions in the teachings of Mohammad are to be explained by a certain phenomenon: later verses (or teachings) that contradict former ones abrogate them.
In this section we will give a few contradictions, some related to the phenomenon of abrogation and some not.

Example #1: The Torah and Gospel, God’s word or not?
It was We who revealed the law [Torah] (to Moses): therein was guidance and light. By its standard have been judged the Jews, by the prophets who bowed to Allah's will, by the rabbis and the doctors of law: for to them was entrusted the protection of Allah's book, and they were witnesses thereto: therefore fear not men, but fear me, and sell not my signs for a miserable price. If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed, they are (no better than) Unbelievers. And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the Law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear Allah. Let the people of the Gospel judge by what Allah hath revealed therein. If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed, they are (no better than) those who rebel.  (AL-MAEDA/5, 44,46-47)
 And if thou (Muhammad) art in doubt concerning that which We reveal unto thee, then question those who read the Scripture (that was) before thee.” (YUNUS/10, 92)

Contradicted by:
Of the Jews there are those who displace words from their (right) places.” (AN-NISA/4 ,46)
And certainly Allah made a covenant with the children of Israel… they altered the words from their places and they neglected a portion of what they were reminded” (AL-MAEDA/5, 12-13)
“A party from among them indeed used to hear the Word of Allah, then altered it after they had understood it, and they know (this).”(AL-BAQARA/2, 75)

Example #2: Christians & Jews, saved or not?
Lo! Those who believe [i.e. in Mohammad], and those who are Jews, and Christians, and Sabaeans - whoever believeth in Allah and the Last Day and doeth right - surely their reward is with their Lord, and there shall no fear come upon them neither shall they grieve.” (AL-BAQARA/2, 62)
I will make those who follow thee [i.e. Jesus] superior to those who reject faith, to the Day of Resurrection” (AL-E-IMRAN/3, 55)
Contradicted by:
Surely the (true) religion with Allah is Islam(AL-E-IMRAN/3, 19)
And whoever desires a religion other than Islam, it shall not be accepted from him, and in the hereafter he shall be one of the losers” (ibid. 85)

Example #3: Wine: from God or Satan?
And Allah has sent down water from the cloud and therewith given life to the earth after its death; most surely there is a sign in this for a people who would listen. And most surely there is a lesson for you in the cattleAnd of the fruits of the palms and the grapes-- you obtain from them intoxication and goodly provision; most surely there is a sign in this for a people who ponder.” (AN-NAHL/16, 65-67)
Contradicted by:
O ye who believe! Intoxicants and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows, are an abomination,- of Satan's handwork: Leave it aside in order that ye may succeed.” (AL-MAEDA/5, 90)
(Nonetheless, Mohammad promised his followers wine in Heaven: “Their thirst will be slaked with Pure Wine sealed” (AL-MUTAFFIFIN/83, 25))

Example #4: Religious freedom
There is no compulsion in religion.” (AL-BAQARA/2, 256)
Say: O unbelievers! … You shall have your religion and I shall have my religion. (AL-KAFIROON/109, 1,6)
Invite (all) to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious” (AN-NAHL/16, 125)
And if your Lord had pleased, surely all those who are in the earth would have believed, all of them; will you then force men till they become believers?” (YUNUS/10, 99)
 but if they turn back, Thy duty is to convey the Message; and in Allah's sight are (all) His servants” (AL-E-IMRAN/3, 20)
therefore turn aside from them and admonish them, and speak to them effectual words concerning themselves.” (AN-NISA/4, 63)
Had Allah willed, they had not been idolatrous. We have not set thee as a keeper over them, nor art thou responsible for them.” (AL-ANAAM/6, 107)
And have patience with what they say, and leave them with noble (dignity).” (AL-MUZZAMMIL/73, 10)
turn away with kindly forgiveness” (AL-HIJR/15, 85)
Hold to forgiveness; command what is right; But turn away from the ignorant.” (AL-ARAF/7, 199)
thy duty is to make (the Message) reach them: it is our part to call them to account.” (AL-RAD/13, 40)
And the servants of the Beneficent Allah are they who walk on the earth in humbleness, and when the ignorant address them, they say: Peace.” (AL-FURQAN/25, 63)
But if the enemy incline towards peace, do thou (also) incline towards peace” (AL-ANFAL/8, 61)
Contradicted by:
slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush” (AL-TAWBA/9, 5)
Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger [i.e. Mohammad], nor acknowledge the religion of Truth [i.e. Islam], (even if they are) of the People of the Book [i.e. Jews & Christians], until they pay the Jizya [i.e. tax] with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.” (ibid. 29)
Therefore, when ye meet the Unbelievers, smite at their necks; At length, when ye have thoroughly subdued them, bind a bond firmly (on them)…” (MUHAMMAD/47, 4)
but if they turn back, seize them and slay them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or helpers from their ranks” (AN-NISA/4, 89) (compare with: “but if they turn back, Thy duty is to convey the Message; and in Allah's sight are (all) His servants” (AL-E-IMRAN/3, 20))
Strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them” (AL-ANFAL/8, 12)
Be not weary and faint-hearted, crying for peace, when ye should be uppermost” (MUHAMMAD/47, 35)
And fight them on until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah altogether and everywhere” (AL-ANFAL/8, 39)

These examples are clear doctrinal teachings that were abrogated and contradict each other. Some might say that the teachings that talk about peace were meant to be temporary & concerned with special occasions, however, the great number and sweeping statements of the Quran were first very clear that “There is no compulsion in religion.” (AL-BAQARA/2, 256)
As-Sayyouti[12] says that the verses on fighting did not abrogate the former ones on religious freedom, but rather suspended them, i.e. when Muslims are weak, they seek peace, and when they are strong enough, they fight the others, and this view is even more insidious.

[1] It is useful to note that the Meccans were not convinced by this challenge, and kept requesting a real miracle: “And when Our communications are recited to them, they say: We have heard this (before): if we wished, we could say (words) like these: these are nothing but tales of the ancients.” (AL-ANFAL/8, 31)
[3]  The city to which he fled in A.D. 622.
[4] Ibid. Many new opinions have been invented lately, such as that the miraculousness of the Quran consists in its high spirituality, or guidance, or law.
[5] Statistical information is taken from
[7] Many people who know modern Arabic and, upon reading the Quran's archaic language, confuse archaism with eloquence, and think that the Quran’s unintelligibility is a sign of its eloquence; however, in reality, archaism does not equal eloquence, and unintelligibility does not equal genius.
[8]  Mohammad Abdul Ra’ouf Al Manawy, “Fayd Al Qadir Fi Sharh Aj-jamii As-saghir,” Letter A, 1625 (the book can also be downloaded from )
[9] “Cursed be man! how ungrateful is he!” (ABASA/80, 17)
[10] “The hour is nigh, and the moon is cleft asunder.” (AL-QAMAR/54, 1)
[11] “When the earth is shaken with her (violent) shaking, and the earth brings forth her burdens” (AL-ZALZALA/99, 2)