Historical research of Quran

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Jochen Katz

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Jun 5, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/5/98
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In article <6l4bt7$hhp$1...@usenet01.srv.cis.pitt.edu>,
sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp (Dr. M S M Saifullah) makes the
following claims:

By the way, Katz is unaware of the collection of Qur'anic manuscripts by
Professors Bergstrasser and Pretzl. Below is a 'brief criticism' of
Jeffery's work by myself and others:


Katz: I am not unaware at all. No need to presume.
I have a question to these claims you bring
below (similarly to your "quotes" from Bucaille).

------------------------------------------

Jeffery & Manuscript Evidence
-----------------------------

Jeffery, in his treatment of the Qur'an, talks exclusively about the
Archive and his collaboration with Professors Bergstrasser and Pretzl, but
surprisingly omits the mention of the Archive's report and findings.

Talking about the Archive of Professor Bergstrasser's

"Meanwhile Dr. Pretzl, Bergstrasser's successor at Munich, has begun to
organize the Archive for the Korankomission set up by the Bavarian Academy
at Bergstrasser's initiation, and has already assembled a goodly
collection of photographs early Kufic Codices and early unpublished
Qira'at works."[19]

And its use for the 'Critical Edition'of the Qur'an, Jeffery says:

"The present writer was collaborating with the late Professor Bergstrasser
on such a project, and a beginning had been made on both the connected
problems. The writer has gone through all the printed literature and a
good deal of MSS material to collect all the variant readings.
Bergstrasser established at Munich a Qur'anic Archive in which he
commenced to gather the photographs of all early Qur'anic MSS, and of all
masoretic material connected therewith. After his untimely death this
Archive was continued and developed by his successor Otto Pretzl, but
Pretzl was killed outside Sebastopol during this late War, and the whole
of the Archive at Munich was destroyed by bomb action and by fire, so that
the gigantic task has to be started over again from the beginning."[20]

In his lecture on 'The Textual History Of The Qur'an', delivered in
Jerusalem (1946) and published in his The Qur'an As Scripture, Jeffery
fails to mention the archives conclusion regarding the collection of the
Qur'an and the textual differences in various versions. Dr. Hamidullah,
who had met Dr. Pretzl when the latter came to Paris to collect
photocopies of the Qur'anic manuscripts available in the libraries
there[21], says that Pretzl told him: "Our Institute (Archive) has
collected the photographs of 42,000 copies of the Qur'an and we are
collating them"[22] and that, after accomplishing this task before its
destruction, issued a 'provisional report' that according to him, reads:

"The work of collation of various copies of the Qur'an is not completed
yet. However, on the basis of the work accomplished so far, we can say
that there are occasional mistakes of the copyists, but there is no
textual difference found (in the 42,000 copies of the Qur'an, which have
been collated)."[23]

[19] Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an:
The Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.vii.

[20] Arthur Jeffery, The Qur'an As Scripture, 1952, Russell F Moore
Company Inc., New York, p.103.

[21] Muhammad Hamidullah, Khutubat-e-Bahawalpur, 1401AH, Islamic
University, Bahawalpur, Pakistan, p.15-16.

[22] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.16

[23] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.15-16

----------------------------


Here comes the question:

Does Hamidullah give any reference to where he gets those
quotes from? Where can this "provisional report" be found?

To my information the number of 42,000 copies is a myth. But
I am sure willing to have people hunt this report down if it
exists. Would you be so kind and give us a reference where
to find it?

Thank you very much.

Jochen Katz

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 9, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/9/98
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On 5 Jun 1998, Jochen Katz wrote:

Assalamu alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> Does Hamidullah give any reference to where he gets those
> quotes from? Where can this "provisional report" be found?

Well, I quoted the reference of Hamidullah. Now it is up to you to search
it and let me know.

> To my information the number of 42,000 copies is a myth. But
> I am sure willing to have people hunt this report down if it
> exists. Would you be so kind and give us a reference where
> to find it?

Yes, that is what Dr. Heger 'informed' us that. But surprisingly he did
not gave us any evidence for that. Is that not something a very routine
activity from Christians hanging around in this newsgroup?

Jeffery mentions about the collection of manuscripts by Professors
Bergstrasser and Pretzl. And that definitely is not a myth, assuming that
Jeffery is honest. He mentions that he was having close contacts with
Professors Bergstrasser and Pretzl concerning the 'critical edition' of
the Qur'an. That is not a myth (assuming that Jeffery is honest). Further,
he says that the archive was destroyed in the WWII bombing. Would any one
deny WWII as a myth?

For the sake of argument, let us say it was all myth. This means that
Jeffery was lying about Professors Bergstrasser and Pretzl and their
monumental archive collection. So, what is the whole point in using
Jeffery's work to attack the Qur'an when he himself was lying (assuming
that what Jeffery reported was all myth?)?

The myth argument does not really bode well,is it?

Wassalam
Saifullah

--
Dr. M S M Saifullah NTT Basic Research Laboratories
'Islamic Awareness' http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Olympus/5603/


Jochen Katz

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Jun 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/10/98
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Just to clarify what I want.

In article <6lkevf$gvd$1...@shell3.ba.best.com>,

sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp (Dr. M S M Saifullah) writes:

} > Does Hamidullah give any reference to where he gets those
} > quotes from? Where can this "provisional report" be found?
}
} Well, I quoted the reference of Hamidullah. Now it is up to you to search
} it and let me know.

You quoted a book which I have no access to, and which in
addition seems to be in a language I cannot understand
[if the title is any indication for that].

[21] Muhammad Hamidullah, Khutubat-e-Bahawalpur, 1401AH,
Islamic University, Bahawalpur, Pakistan, p.15-16.
[22] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.16
[23] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.15-16

According to your quote, the author claims various things
about Arthur Jefferey. Dr. Jefferey wrote in English. If
he HAS references then the references are something I can
check out.

I do not ask you to find the books/papers of all the
references that Hamidullah gives. My request is for the
references themselves which he gives or does not give.
Does Hamidullah give complete citations (author, title,
publisher, year, page numbers) for the origin of his
claims?

That is what I want.

Is that too much to ask?

Jochen Katz

---
"The truth is incontrovertible. Panic may resent it;
ignorance may deride it; malice may distort it, but
there it is." --Winston Churchill


Jochen Katz

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Jun 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/10/98
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Well, I would say that was vintage Saifullah. I politely asked
for references for various of his claims, but he thinks he has
to mock this request instead giving answers. It was nearly
the same with the "anonymous renknowed scholar" from Bucaille's
about whom we are still waiting for more information.

In article <6lkevf$gvd$1...@shell3.ba.best.com>,
sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp (Dr. M S M Saifullah) writes:

} > Does Hamidullah give any reference to where he gets those
} > quotes from? Where can this "provisional report" be found?
}
} Well, I quoted the reference of Hamidullah. Now it is up to you to search
} it and let me know.

You quoted a book which I have no access to, and which in
addition seems to be in a language I cannot understand
[if the title is any indication for that].

[21] Muhammad Hamidullah, Khutubat-e-Bahawalpur, 1401AH,
Islamic University, Bahawalpur, Pakistan, p.15-16.
[22] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.16
[23] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.15-16

According to your quote, the author claims various things
about Arthur Jefferey. Dr. Jefferey wrote in English. If
he HAS references then the references are something I can

check out. I have no access to your "reference" and frankly,
I have seen enough Muslim books with dead end references.
By that I mean, everything ends in some book which only
makes a claim but doesn't not cite its original source.

Maybe Hamidullah is the dead end here and doesn't give
any evidence for his claims? This would explain your rude
response. Mockery is your specialty, but it won't make you
look good. Maybe you would at some time learn some manners
from Mohammad Ghoniem, now that he is on your team? He is
a pleasant person to converse with.

Plainly, if you can quote Hamidullah, then either you have
the book yourself, or there is a person whom you are in
contact with and who gave you theses quotes. In either
case, you or that person can look up what references
Hamidullah gives if any. You have access to the book.
I don't.

} > To my information the number of 42,000 copies is a myth. But
} > I am sure willing to have people hunt this report down if it
} > exists. Would you be so kind and give us a reference where
} > to find it?
}
} Yes, that is what Dr. Heger 'informed' us that. But surprisingly he did
} not gave us any evidence for that. Is that not something a very routine
} activity from Christians hanging around in this newsgroup?

Then why don't you give evidence for your claims?

You know, it is the person who makes the claim for existence
who has to provide the evidence. Proof for non-existence is
always nearly impossible. That is an established principle
which should not be unknown to Saifullah. Or maybe it is.

} Jeffery mentions about the collection of manuscripts by Professors
} Bergstrasser and Pretzl.

Correct. I am aware of that.

} And that definitely is not a myth, assuming that
} Jeffery is honest. He mentions that he was having close contacts with
} Professors Bergstrasser and Pretzl concerning the 'critical edition' of
} the Qur'an. That is not a myth (assuming that Jeffery is honest). Further,
} he says that the archive was destroyed in the WWII bombing. Would any one
} deny WWII as a myth?

So far all is fine. But you are producing smoke screens. And you
are intelligent enough to know that you are making only into
rethoric here.



} For the sake of argument, let us say it was all myth.

I never said it is ALL a myth. My question was very specific.
And I agree with the factuality of the above. Your conclusion
is plain ridiculous:

} This means that
} Jeffery was lying about Professors Bergstrasser and Pretzl and their
} monumental archive collection. So, what is the whole point in using
} Jeffery's work to attack the Qur'an when he himself was lying (assuming
} that what Jeffery reported was all myth?)?
}
} The myth argument does not really bode well,is it?

Let me make my question clearer still. It comes out of
this quotation from Hamidullah:

says that Pretzl told him: "Our Institute (Archive) has
collected the photographs of 42,000 copies of the Qur'an and we are
collating them"[22] and that, after accomplishing this task before its
destruction, issued a 'provisional report' that according to him, reads:

"The work of collation of various copies of the Qur'an is not completed
yet. However, on the basis of the work accomplished so far, we can say
that there are occasional mistakes of the copyists, but there is no
textual difference found (in the 42,000 copies of the Qur'an, which have
been collated)."[23]


Questions:

1. What is the source for the claim of 42,000 manuscripts?
2. What is the source of the claim that there were no textual
differences.

I give you the historicity of the other smoke screen claims.
But I doubt the essentials of your claim and which are summarized
in those two questions. Please give evidence. You have access to
the book. If you stall that only gives the strong suggestion
that this is indeed a dead end claim without evidence.

And no, mockery certainly won't do.

Jochen Katz

---
"I am certain that God has given us our reason to discern between truth
and falsehood, and he that makes not this use of it, but believes things
he knows not why, I say, it is by chance that he believes the truth, and
not by choice; and that I cannot but fear that God will not accept this
sacrifice of fools." William Chillingworth (1602-1644)


Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/11/98
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On 10 Jun 1998, Jochen Katz wrote:

Assalamu-alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> to mock this request instead giving answers. It was nearly
> the same with the "anonymous renknowed scholar" from Bucaille's
> about whom we are still waiting for more information.

I thought Katz did not find the book, but then I had to inform him of the
eixtence of such a book by Wreszinski. Is that not surprising that it came
up in my search but was ansent in Katz's?

> You quoted a book which I have no access to, and which in
> addition seems to be in a language I cannot understand
> [if the title is any indication for that].
>
> [21] Muhammad Hamidullah, Khutubat-e-Bahawalpur, 1401AH,
> Islamic University, Bahawalpur, Pakistan, p.15-16.
> [22] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.16
> [23] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.15-16

Yes, there are lots of book of which I have no access to nor I can read
them for example the works in German by Goldziher, Noldeke, Schawally etc.
But it does not stop me from making an effort to get them and ask someone
to read and translate. It is a very tedious job to to do. But I am most
willing to take it up if the need is very pressing. May be you can try out
the same methodology. I am sure, it is a small world and finding a book is
not difficult...

> According to your quote, the author claims various things
> about Arthur Jefferey. Dr. Jefferey wrote in English. If
> he HAS references then the references are something I can
> check out. I have no access to your "reference" and frankly,
> I have seen enough Muslim books with dead end references.
> By that I mean, everything ends in some book which only
> makes a claim but doesn't not cite its original source.

Yes, since you have the access to Jeffery's references concerning the
Qur'an and its 'variant readings' why not read them carefully? I can
promise you one thing, inshallah, that if you do not it, you are in big
trouble. Merely making a claim of access does not mean that you know what
is in that book.

I have seen enough Christian books on Islam which do not even know how to
quote a verse in the Qur'an or a hadith or the exegesis of the Qur'an
properly. The best example of it can be seen in the case of Ibn Sarh. Do I
need to add a few more cases to corroborate my point further? It is not
about having an access to a book. It is all about how (selectively) one
chooses the material. Shall I remind Katz of Adrian Brockett's article on
Hafs and Warsh transmission or Quss bin Sa'adah?

> Maybe Hamidullah is the dead end here and doesn't give
> any evidence for his claims? This would explain your rude
> response. Mockery is your specialty, but it won't make you
> look good.

May be next time you would be less rude in your claims (not exactly yours
but copied shamelessly from Dr. Heger's) that the story of 42,000
manuscripts of the Qur'an is a myth. Where was the evidence for that from
either you or Dr. Heger? I will show politeness if the other person is
polite enough. No one likes chocolates pushed down his throat!

> Plainly, if you can quote Hamidullah, then either you have
> the book yourself, or there is a person whom you are in
> contact with and who gave you theses quotes. In either
> case, you or that person can look up what references
> Hamidullah gives if any. You have access to the book.
> I don't.

I already said: Since you claimed that the story was a myth, why not prove
that it is a myth? It is definitely not a difficult thing to do, at least.
I provided the quote at least to back up whatever point I have to make and
if you are not satisfied, you search it yourself and prove me wrong. That
is very fair on your part as well as mine.

> Then why don't you give evidence for your claims?

Now who started the concept of 42,000 manuscripts of the Qur'an as a myth?
It was not me....

> I never said it is ALL a myth. My question was very specific.
> And I agree with the factuality of the above. Your conclusion
> is plain ridiculous:

I thought not providing a reference for the myth of 42,000 manuscripts of
the Qur'an was plainly ridiculous. Do not you think so?

> I give you the historicity of the other smoke screen claims.
> But I doubt the essentials of your claim and which are summarized
> in those two questions. Please give evidence. You have access to
> the book. If you stall that only gives the strong suggestion
> that this is indeed a dead end claim without evidence.

Well, I can ask people to send me the photocopy of it. It will take
sometime but then why not in the meantime do some homework concerning the
myth theory of 42,000 manuscripts and get the evidence. I hope Dr. Heger
would be kind enough to provide you the references. Till now there is NO
evidence for your story. May be you should learn the logic (before
teaching anyone!) that anyone who asserts have to prove, am I correct
there?

Lastly, I was browsing through the works of Nabia Abbott [The Rise of The
North Arabic Script & Its Kur'anic Development, 1939, Nabia Abbott, The
University of Chicago Press, Chicago] last weekend to see if she has seen
any difference in the text of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd century AH parchments
as well as Qur'anic manuscripts present in Oriental Institute, University
of Chicago. The interesting bit is that she did not report any textual
errors except for a scribal error which the scribe himself recognized and
corrected it. This is all mentioned in her book. She also mentions the
various Qira'a being written on the margins of a few manuscripts.

Finding a textual error would have been a very good material for doubting
the textual history of the Qur'an. But then the works that I have studied
till now do not mention it. May be it is high time you get some hardcore
evidence for that 42,000 manuscript as a myth, inshallah.

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/12/98
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On 10 Jun 1998, Jochen Katz wrote:

Assalamu-alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> You quoted a book which I have no access to, and which in


> addition seems to be in a language I cannot understand
> [if the title is any indication for that].

Yesterday, I went home to check what Jeffery himself has to say on the
collection of manuscripts by Bergstrasser and Pretzl. Let me go in a
chronological order.

"Meanwhile Dr. Pretzl, Bergstrasser's successor at Munich, has begun to
organize the Archive for the Korankomission set up by the Bavarian Academy
at Bergstrasser's initiation, and has already assembled a goodly
collection of photographs early Kufic Codices and early unpublished
Qira'at works."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.vii.]

So, we are in agreement that there was an Archive run by Bergstrasser and
Pretzl. Now the next thing is what does Jeffery say about their collection
of Kufic codices and unpublished Qira'at works.

"Bergstrasser in his preliminary collection of the uncanonical readings of
Ibn Mas'ud and Ubai made an attempt to estimate the value of these two
texts as compared with the 'Uthmanic text. With increase of material one
feels less inclined to venture on such a judgement of value."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.16]

Bergstrasser, in his collection of these variant texts (which were not
included in the "official" / "canonical" Qur'an), attempted to compare
their value with the "accepted" 'Uthmanic text. During this attempt,
however, the "increase of material" (i.e., the amount of "variant" /
"uncanonical" / "not-accepted material" that he came across grew) to such
a degree that Jeffrey "feels less inclined to venture on such a judgement
of value" i.e., meaning that there is so much of this "variant material"
that its value speaks for itself i.e., it's of the SAME value as the
canonical text. In other words, there are no textual differences between
the 'Uthmanic text and the companion Codices except for the 'variant'
readings.

It is not surprising that Jeffery went on to "suggest" further that
'variants' found in the companion Codices were "improvements" of the
'Uthmanic text and the companions themselves suggested such 'variants'
'out of piety'. This suggestion, is not made either by Ibn Abi Da'wud in
his Kitab al-Masahif or any other Muslim writers that I am aware of.

Further, the Jeffery quotes the book Geschichte des Qorantexts, a book in
German concerning Bergstrasser's work.

So, it is Jeffery's admission that the Codices of Ibn Mas'ud, Ubayy when
comapred with 'Uthmanic recension is that same. This is from the works of
Bergstrasser's Archive.

This is a recapitulation of yesterday's point. I was browsing through the


works of Nabia Abbott [The Rise of The North Arabic Script & Its Kur'anic
Development, 1939, Nabia Abbott, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago]
last weekend to see if she has seen any difference in the text of the 1st,
2nd and 3rd century AH parchments as well as Qur'anic manuscripts present
in Oriental Institute, University of Chicago. The interesting bit is that
she did not report any textual errors except for a scribal error which the

scribe himself recognized and corrected it [pp.84]. This is all mentioned


in her book. She also mentions the various Qira'a being written on the
margins of a few manuscripts.

Lastly, Hamidullah says that Pretzl told him: "Our Institute (Archive) has


collected the photographs of 42,000 copies of the Qur'an and we are
collating them"[22] and that, after accomplishing this task before its
destruction, issued a 'provisional report' that according to him, reads:

"The work of collation of various copies of the Qur'an is not completed
yet. However, on the basis of the work accomplished so far, we can say
that there are occasional mistakes of the copyists, but there is no
textual difference found (in the 42,000 copies of the Qur'an, which have
been collated)."[23]

[21] Muhammad Hamidullah, Khutubat-e-Bahawalpur, 1401AH,


Islamic University, Bahawalpur, Pakistan, p.15-16.
[22] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.16
[23] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.15-16

I have asked people to send me the above reference. But it definitely
corroborates what Jeffery and Abbott's works have shown. Finding a textual


error would have been a very good material for doubting the textual
history of the Qur'an. But then the works that I have studied till now do
not mention it.

Now for Katz: It is high time he gets some hardcore evidence for 42,000
manuscript as a myth, inshallah. Why not beg or cajole Dr. Heger for a
reference? Or else do not waste our time by letting hyperboles out. Empty
vessels make lot of noise, as they say...

Jochen Katz

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Jun 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/13/98
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In article <6ls9kh$sa3$1...@shell3.ba.best.com>,
sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp (Dr. M S M Saifullah) writes:

} This is a recapitulation of yesterday's point. I was browsing through the
} works of Nabia Abbott [The Rise of The North Arabic Script & Its Kur'anic
} Development, 1939, Nabia Abbott, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago]
} last weekend to see if she has seen any difference in the text of the 1st,
} 2nd and 3rd century AH parchments as well as Qur'anic manuscripts present
} in Oriental Institute, University of Chicago. The interesting bit is that
} she did not report any textual errors except for a scribal error which the
} scribe himself recognized and corrected it [pp.84]. This is all mentioned
} in her book. She also mentions the various Qira'a being written on the
} margins of a few manuscripts.

And how many manuscripts does she claim to have reviewed?

10, 20, 100? Does she tell?

} Lastly, Hamidullah says that Pretzl told him: "Our Institute (Archive) has
} collected the photographs of 42,000 copies of the Qur'an and we are
} collating them"[22] and that, after accomplishing this task before its
} destruction, issued a 'provisional report' that according to him, reads:
}
} "The work of collation of various copies of the Qur'an is not completed
} yet. However, on the basis of the work accomplished so far, we can say
} that there are occasional mistakes of the copyists, but there is no
} textual difference found (in the 42,000 copies of the Qur'an, which have
} been collated)."[23]

Where is this provisional report to be found? I want to see whether
there is any direct reference in Pretzl or others in that project
that talk about 42,000 manuscripts and no variants.

} Now for Katz: It is high time he gets some hardcore evidence for 42,000
} manuscript as a myth, inshallah. Why not beg or cajole Dr. Heger for a
} reference? Or else do not waste our time by letting hyperboles out. Empty
} vessels make lot of noise, as they say...

No, the person who makes the positive claims has to bring the evidence.

You seem to have lost all sense for reality. Do you know how much
42,000 is? We have some 5,600 Greek manuscripts from the NT. That
is a HUGE number. And that includes manuscripts all the way up to
the 10th century.

Manuscripts means HANDwritten copies. Those were very very expensive.
Not many people could afford them. They were not mass reproduced.

42,000 Qur'an manuscripts is unbelievable. What time frame is that
supposed to cover? All the way up to printed Qur'ans from the 19th
century? Or did they count ever leaf individually from a codex?

Would the Samarkand codex of the Qur'an be counted as one or as
150 manuscripts if it has 150 pages?

To claim 42,000 manuscripts is a severe sign of having lost a sense
for reality.

Again. If I claim I have seen 42,000 doubles of President Clinton
you would ask me for some evidence. It is not for me to ask you
prove my claim is wrong. It is the one with the claim who has to
provide some evidence. I don't even ask you to tell me where
all those manuscripts were supposed to come from, I only ask you
for a statement published from those involved in the archive that
mentions this phantasmogoric number. I am used to Muslims fabricate
phantastic claims (just have a look at the rumors and hoaxes page
http://answering-islam.org/Hoaxes/ and the issue of the parsi
prophecies about Muhammad I spoke about in the other posting
yesterday). And it is my right to ask for evidence for such claims.
Whether you or Hamidullah claim it that is the same to me. It is
a Muslim claim that needs some evidence before it becomes a bit
more credible. Just looking at the number it sounds certainly
out of this world.

Sincerely,

Jochen Katz


ov...@wxs.nl

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Jun 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/13/98
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Dr. M S M Saifullah wrote:

> Concerning that, there is enough material on the parchments and
>manuscripts as 'Abdurraheem has already discussed (More on this later).

Abdurraheem can also not offer the original material in form of
manuscripts as in a complete Quran.
He cannot offer the autographa.
As you did not till now.

> Till today, nobody has shown that these lost
> verses were in any of the Companion Codices.

Until now nobody has shown the complete codices of Muhammed or Uthman.

> On this issue I would suggest that you read something on al-Naskh wa
>al-Mansukh which is basically, abrigating and abrogation.

Thanks for the advice.

++So 'we have both the original material' is not an honest and/or
realistic statement.
> This is a conclusion without quoting a reference. So, do not expect me to
> gulp it down.

Ah, do you need a reference to conclude that you cannot, till now, offer
me a COMPLETE Quran of the time of Muhammed and/or Uthman in case of
preservation?

> Ask the Topkapi Museum. They will tell you the methods of dating a
> manuscript which involves the Arabic script, the ink used, the material of
>writing etc.

So when I conclude:

1.the date is not sure, assumed, possible so or so.
2.the Quran in the Topkapi Museum is not a complete one, so not relevant
to the issue:

'Preservation and why there is no Quran from the time of Muhammed or
Uthman.'

I think you understand by now, that preservation of Quran is a complete
1-114 Surah Quran, with no verse missing.

>
> > > 3. The Qur'an of 'Ali ibn Abu Talib, the Fourth Rightly Guided Caliph.
> > > Circa 20-40 A. H. / 642-661 C. E. (Najaf, Iraq)
> >
1. A detail from the report of A. Green:

There are also other Qur'ans attributed to Uthman.

Ibn Nadim and Ibn Ain Aba claim that Ali ibn Abi Talib wrote three
Qur'ans of which there is one in Dar al Qutb, Najaf in Iraq and it has
written on it "Ali ibn Abi Talib wrote it in the year 40H", one in Egypt
and one in Iran. It seems almost impossible that the Iman Riba
manuscript in Iran is actually written by the hand of Ali because the
script, although developed at his time, would not have been learnt by
him since the dissentions in his rule kept him too busy to be able to
learn such an art. It is however possible that he ordered someone else
to write it.

So you say that it was of the 4th Caliph and A. Green says it is from
the 3rd Caliph.

> Hold one for a minute! 'Ali was fourth Caliph not the third (Abu Bakr ->
>'Umar -> 'Uthman -> 'Ali).

Tell me something I did not know.

You were talking about Ali and A. Green thinks it is 'almost impossible'
and is also mentioning in the beginning 'attributed to Uthman'.
Looks like 3rd and 4th Caliph to me, is it not?

>
> "The most significant Qur'an attributed to Ali ibn Talib is that in the
> Hussain Mosque in Egypt. The writing is early Kufic, it has many
> similarities to Madini, which is the form of writing that Ali would have
> used. It could well be Ali's own writing."

You see, Ali's work, 4th Caliph.

4th Caliph supposed Qurans are not relevant to the issue:
"Preservation, and why do not have an Quran in our possession from the
time of Muhammad or Uthman'"

>Well, what you have not made a ground work of is the argument. I have not seen what are your arguments
>against the lack of preservation.

Than you did not read my postings.
And you did not read anything about preservation on Muslim-sites and NG
discussing preservation.

Preservation of Quran is most the time used as words of perfectness and
state of art, that Quran today is perfectly preserved and conserved as
from Muhammed.
But there is a timegap with missing complete Quran's from the time of
Muhammed and Uthman (choosing of correct version) till the first
complete Quran in history.

So 'preservation, conservation, perfectly preserved' can simply not
applied to Quran, because you and others did not offer any complete
Quran from the time of Muhammed or Uthman.

So that gives doubt about the argumentations of such followers of Islam.

>May be you should bring some scholarly quotes from the books. I hope that is >not a difficult thing.

Would it not be better stop running around the issue and simply say:

I and my companions cannot offer you a complete Quran from the time of
Muhammed or Uthman, so we cannot uphold the preservation of all times of
Quran?

> Well, you have not read the debate article, have you? You have not read
> any of the works of Abbott, have you? So, what is the point of arguing
> when you have not supplied any quote from any scholarly work. Merely
>repeating something is not going to convince anyone on this newsgroup.

Can you please answer my question, or is that not allowed in
scholarship?

According to your title 'Dr.' I may assume that you have some
scholarship in some way.
According to your scholarship I can expect a normal answer to a normal
question.

Can you answer this questions with a yes or no, followed with evidence:

Do we, in this time, have a complete Quran in our possession from the
time of Muhammed (finished)?

Do we, in this time, have a complete Quran in our possession from the
time of Uthman (selected)?

I expect a normal answer.

Regards,

Oving.

mar...@vom.com

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Jun 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/13/98
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as-salamu 'alaykum.

sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp (Dr. M S M Saifullah) wrote:

>"The work of collation of various copies of the Qur'an is not completed
>yet. However, on the basis of the work accomplished so far, we can say
>that there are occasional mistakes of the copyists, but there is no
>textual difference found (in the 42,000 copies of the Qur'an, which have
>been collated)."[23]
>

> [21] Muhammad Hamidullah, Khutubat-e-Bahawalpur, 1401AH,
> Islamic University, Bahawalpur, Pakistan, p.15-16.
> [22] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.16
> [23] Muhammad Hamidullah, Op.Cit, p.15-16

I have not participated in this discussion, though it is a topic which
has long interested me. However, I must note that M. Hamidullah,
unfortunately, has not been found to be reliable when it comes to
stating that there is "no textual difference" between manuscripts of
the Qur'an. He published an edition of the Tashkent mushaf and stated
in his introduction, "It is inspirfing [sic] to know and to note that
in this copy of the beginning of Islam and other copies now in use in
the world, there is absolutely no difference, not a word is either
more or less. The only difference is that in the copy of the time of
the caliph Osman, there are neither diacritical points not the vowel
signs. The old writing is also not very easy to read for the modern
uninitiated readers." Yet that same edition contains a side-by-side,
modern text Qur'an, and there are differences between it and the
ancient text.

As I have noted in the past, none of the differences which I have
found have a significant effect on meaning, but one, in particular,
does represent a change in wording, 3:37, where "inna llaha" is
missing from the Tashkent.

My own experience is that a study of variations in the Qur'anic text,
in particular among the ten readings known as mutawatir, leads to an
understanding of precisely how well the Qur'anic text is preserved,
which is very well indeed; however, it also makes it impossible to
support extreme statements like "every letter is the same in all
copies of the Qur'an," and claims like this open a door for missionary
slander against the Qur'an, since they are objectively unsupportable
and demonstrably false.

I have put a small amount of effort into determining which reading of
the Qur'an, if any, can be associated with the Tashkent.
Unfortunately, the verses where there is a letter difference between
the mutawatir readings are rare, and, so far, I have not found one
which is present in the Tashkent (which is only, perhaps, a half of
the Qur'an, being in rather bad shape).

There is a possible new twist to this story. A friend returned
recently from Tashkent, and he noted to me that there is a "much more
recent copy" on display. He speculated that what we have in the
Pisareff edition (and thus the Hamidullah, which was copied from the
Pisareff) might be from the *copy* and not the original. While this is
probably not the case, he intends to compare some photographs of the
copy which he may have taken with what he has of the Pisareff.

*If* the Pisareff is taken from the copy and not the original, it's a
whole affair....

What is striking to me about this whole issue is how scarce real
knowledge and information is concerning it. I have never seen, for
example, any photographs of any portion of the Topkapi manuscript of
the Qur'an, also attributed to 'Uthman, nor of the 'Ali manuscript at
Najaf. It is quite apparent that Islamic scholarship is still in the
dark ages....


AbdulraHman Lomax
mar...@vom.com
P.O. Box 423
Sonoma, CA 95476
USA


mar...@vom.com

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Jun 14, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/14/98
to

as-salamu 'alaykum.

ov...@wxs.nl wrote:

>Can you answer this questions with a yes or no, followed with evidence:
>
>Do we, in this time, have a complete Quran in our possession from the
>time of Muhammed (finished)?

Yes.

>Do we, in this time, have a complete Quran in our possession from the
>time of Uthman (selected)?

Yes.

>I expect a normal answer.

Hey, he asked for a yes or no answer. And for evidence to follow. So
it will follow.

"Qur'an" means "reading" or "recitation."

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 15, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/15/98
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In article <6lupm9$7gb$1...@shell3.ba.best.com>, mar...@vom.com wrote:

> as-salamu 'alaykum.

Walaikumus-salaam wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> My own experience is that a study of variations in the Qur'anic text,
> in particular among the ten readings known as mutawatir, leads to an
> understanding of precisely how well the Qur'anic text is preserved,
> which is very well indeed; however, it also makes it impossible to
> support extreme statements like "every letter is the same in all
> copies of the Qur'an," and claims like this open a door for missionary
> slander against the Qur'an, since they are objectively unsupportable
> and demonstrably false.

Missionaries have an axe to grind. They would dupe Muslims who are not
knowledgeable in the Qira'at and other issues by claiming that the Qur'an
is 'different' in different places even after they know what the Qira'at
is! I have dealt with the manuscript evidence of the Qira'at and other
early Kufic Codices in a different thread. This is from Bergstrasser and
quoted by Jeffery.

> What is striking to me about this whole issue is how scarce real
> knowledge and information is concerning it. I have never seen, for
> example, any photographs of any portion of the Topkapi manuscript of
> the Qur'an, also attributed to 'Uthman, nor of the 'Ali manuscript at
> Najaf. It is quite apparent that Islamic scholarship is still in the
> dark ages....

Apparently brother Lomax has not ventured into Islamic scholarship and he
is in dark about it. There are quite a few books on Calligraphy and dating
of the Qur'anic manuscripts in Arabic and none of them are known to us. I
have started making enquiries about it and inshallah, I would have some
good references on this issue.

The information that trickles down to us concerning the Qur'anic
manuscripts and parchments is from the the orientalists' work like Abbott,
Schiemel (sp.?), and others. This is a little bit of information available
in the translated and abridged version of Fihirst of al-Nadim concerning
the writing material, script etc. of the Qur'anic material. With this kind
of scholarship available in English, I do not know what makes brother
Lomax claim that Islamic scholarship is still in the dark ages....

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 15, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/15/98
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On 13 Jun 1998, Jochen Katz wrote:

Assalamu-alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> And how many manuscripts does she claim to have reviewed?


>
> 10, 20, 100? Does she tell?

Why not go and check her book since it is in english? Do not you know how
to read English? There is every bit of information available, i.e.,
material used, type of script, binding, dating of the parchments and
manuscripts etc.

> Where is this provisional report to be found? I want to see whether
> there is any direct reference in Pretzl or others in that project
> that talk about 42,000 manuscripts and no variants.

I told Katz to wait till I get the references.

> } Now for Katz: It is high time he gets some hardcore evidence for 42,000
> } manuscript as a myth, inshallah. Why not beg or cajole Dr. Heger for a
> } reference? Or else do not waste our time by letting hyperboles out. Empty
> } vessels make lot of noise, as they say...
>
> No, the person who makes the positive claims has to bring the evidence.

Katz is saying that a negative claim itself is not a claim and hence the
burden of proof does not lie on him. I wonder who taught Katz logic. I can
claim that trinitarian Christianity is all paganism which in my opinion is
a negative claim and hence I do not have provide any evidence for that (In
reality, if I do that, it will be an object of a big laugh).

Katz, of course, is well aware that neither Dr. Heger nor himself has any
evidence to prove that 42,000 copies of the Qur'an is a myth. So, for this
reason he has to take refuge in silly and cheap excuses like the one
above. It is quite usual when a missionary wants to make a claim but can
not provide evidence.

I have already quoted from Arthur Jeffery's work which talks about
Jeffery's collaboration with Bergstrasser and Pretzl concerning the
'Critical Text of the Qur'an'.

"Meanwhile Dr. Pretzl, Bergstrasser's successor at Munich, has begun to
organize the Archive for the Korankomission set up by the Bavarian Academy
at Bergstrasser's initiation, and has already assembled a goodly
collection of photographs early Kufic Codices and early unpublished
Qira'at works."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.vii.]

Jeffery was forced to admit after Bergstrasser went through the 'goodly
collection of photographs of early Kufic Codices as well as unpublished
Qira'at works' that:

"Bergstrasser in his preliminary collection of the uncanonical readings of
Ibn Mas'ud and Ubai made an attempt to estimate the value of these two
texts as compared with the 'Uthmanic text. With increase of material one
feels less inclined to venture on such a judgement of value."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.16]

So, the material in the so-called 'rival Codices' is same as that of
'Uthmanic recension. Is that a better proof than what Katz is asking for?

Yes, it is definitely the most painful thing for Katz to gulp because

1. The proof is contradictory to his claims and hence it was not discussed
at all. This, by the way, has more bad news for Gilchrist and his
followers.

2. There is no evidence provided by Katz except making a nice little noisy
claim. It is not surprising how shameless missionaries like Katz can get
after shamelessly copying someone else unverified claims!

> You seem to have lost all sense for reality. Do you know how much
> 42,000 is? We have some 5,600 Greek manuscripts from the NT. That
> is a HUGE number. And that includes manuscripts all the way up to
> the 10th century.

Yes, Muslims never used throw the written copies of the Qur'an in
dust-bins after they got torn or mutiliated. What they used to do is to
deposit them in Wakf. Hence, torn and mutiliated copies of the Qur'an
would be heaped together in a place. Katz would definitely be better off
if he would read some of the works on the Qur'an manuscripts and how they
were treated by Muslims. As usual, one expects missionaries to make noise
rather than a point.

Concerning the 5600 Greek manuscripts, the number which is generally
quoted as 'millions' and by some as 'thousands and thousands', has one
strange point to make:

"It is safe to say that there is not one sentence in the New Testament in
which the manuscript tradition is wholly uniform." [The Interpreters
Dictionary of the Bible, Abingdon Press:1962 in 4 volumes, under the
heading 'Text, NT'.]

So, even if there are a billion manuscripts, it would not matter unless
there is no uniformity in the NT.

> Manuscripts means HANDwritten copies. Those were very very expensive.
> Not many people could afford them. They were not mass reproduced.

Yes, I am very well aware of such distinctions. Manuscripts were expensive
and not many people would be able to afford it, especially the ones which
are highly ornamental and calligraphic. Calligraphy was an art that was
much practiced in Islam. In the books of Indian History, we read that the
Mughal emperor Aurangzeb used to write the Qur'ans with his own hand. We
are talking about some 500 years ago and the Qur'ans were written with
hands.

> To claim 42,000 manuscripts is a severe sign of having lost a sense
> for reality.

Not when one compares the history of writing in Islam and Christianity.

> mentions this phantasmogoric number. I am used to Muslims fabricate
> phantastic claims (just have a look at the rumors and hoaxes page
> http://answering-islam.org/Hoaxes/ and the issue of the parsi
> prophecies about Muhammad I spoke about in the other posting
> yesterday). And it is my right to ask for evidence for such claims.

Is it not my evidence to ask for the claim that 42,000 manuscripts as a
myth? Katz: it is not a one way traffic. Christian missionaries like Katz
are also involved in making fantastic claims about the Qur'an and other
Islamic issues. May be I should start a section on Hoaxes by Missionaries
and I am sure it will eat away much of the disk space, inshallah.

Till now, no evidence from Katz on this issue. Tell me in clear words when
are you going to provide the evidence. I am most willing to wait for even
half a year.

Dr. Christoph Heger

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Jun 15, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/15/98
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Greetings to all,

Under the above heading we had over 20 contributions which eventually ended in
a lot of nitpicking by Dr. Saifullah. Since in these last contributions of his
he repeatedly mentioned my name (though for lack of time I hadn't taken part in
this thread till now), I feel compelled to enter this discussion.

I am going to do it in four steps: (1) I address the main item, whether, as Dr.
Saifullah repeatedly maintained, we have an astonishing uniformity in the
Qur'anic text tradition and there actually are no textual variants in the early
Qur'an manuscripts. (2) I point to the question of Qur'an specimen with a
different arrangement of surahs. (3) I discuss the apparent uniformity of the
Qur'anic text tradition. (4) I address some related questions, which played some
role in the preceding contributions of this thread as the myth of the 42,000
Munich manuscripts e.g.

(1) I wonder, indeed, why Dr. Saifullah disputes a lot of less important facts
whereas the main fact is indisputable: There are, contrary to his statements,
many, even many substantial variants in the text of the Qur'an as handed down to
us in form of manuscripts, fragments and quotations by scholars of early-Islam
times. At various occasions I already had pointed to the following scholarly
collection of such variant readings:

`Abd al-`Aal Saalim Makram (wa-) Ahmad Mukhtaar `Umar (I`dad):
Mu`jam al-qiraa'aat al-Quraniyyah, ma`a maqaddimah fi l-qiraa'aat
wa-ashhar al-qurraa'. I-VIII. al-Kuwayt: Dhaat as-Salaasil
1402-1405/1982-1985.

Most deviations (from say the Egyptian standard edition of the Qur'an) have to
do with vowels, doubling of consonants and alike (thus showing the necessity to
depart from the consonantal text or rasm in Qur'anic studies). But at least some
hundreds are deviations even from the standard rasm.

The existence of deviant versions of Qur'anic passages was known to Muslim
scholarship for centuries. And I wonder why Dr. Saifullah seems not to know this
fact or doesn't reflect on it. These deviant versions, however, appeared to be
only slightly altered, to reflect an older orthography or to be even unsensical,
so that they attracted less attention.

This negligence however turned out to have been premature. In the thread "How to
understand Surah 35:28?" in sri I showed that the deviant version No. 7218 in
the above cited collection, namely "Innamaa yakhshaa llahu min 'ibaadihi
l-'ulamaa'a.", is preferable as authentic to the later standard version "Innamaa
yakhshaa llaha min 'ibaadihi l-'ulamaa'u." There is a great amount of similar
examples.

Though the above mentioned collection is much younger than the work of Nabia
Abbott from 1939 and reviewed much more sources of Qur'anic texts, it is by no
means complete. Many more old manuscripts and fragments have become accessible
in the meantime, though they unfortunately haven't been edited in a scholarly
manner yet. They all have to be scrutinized for additional variants.

(2) For instance we have to look after Qur'an codices showing an arrangement of
surahs which differs from the standard one. Even in the 4th and 5th century AH
it was well known to Muslim scholars that there have been arrangements differing
from that in the edition attributed to Uthman. I refer for instance to Muhammad
b. Ishaq an-Nadim: The Fihrist of al-Nadim. A tenth-century survey of Muslim
culture. (Transl. by) Bayard Dodge. I-II, New York, London: Columbia Univ. Pr.
1970, I p. 53-57, 58-61. The author died around the year 1000 AD, he was a
bookseller and the first Muslim bibliographer. Therefore he is one of the most
important sources for fidels and infidels.

Because of these reports we know: Two early Qur'an authorities are reported to
have kept their "private" Qur'an manuscript which they refused to destroy or
harmonize with the official version promoted by the caliph Uthman: Ibn Mas'ud
and Ubayy b. Ka'b. Lists of the different arrangements of the Surahs in their
respective Mushafs have been preserved.

One may wonder why the existence of a different arrangements of the surahs
should be so important. And so wondered A. T. Welch in his article "al-Kur'an"
in Encyclopedia of Islam, 2nd ed. V 407 b.: "But if most of the suras were
written down and put into approximately their final form during Muhammad's
lifetime, then there would be no strong reason for rejecting the validity of
these reports (on different arrangements; Ch. H.) outright." Actually, for some
reason Muslim scholars took this question rather serious as if they feared that
this argument of A. T. Welch might be inverted: If the validity of these reports
is not to be rejected -- at least as soon as research will be able to present an
old Qur'an specimen with such a different arrangement of surahs --, one must
suspect that some or even most of the Surahs were not written down and put into
approximately their final form during Muhammad's lifetime.

(3) Nevertheless, at first glance the textual tradition of the Qur'an appears
rather uniform and solid in comparison with other antique texts. This faulty
impression has its cause in two circumstances:

Firstly, the relative uniformity is the result of a rigid censureship, i.e.
deletion of deviant Qur'an versions, in the first two, perhaps even three
centuries of Islam -- a censorship which was accompanied by the efforts of the
contemporary grammarians/theologians in Iraq to dispute the remaining textual
difficulties with a flood of explanations including the invention of grammatical
rules, of new words, of new meanings of existing words and so on.

Concerning the familiar argument of the oral tradition allegedly securing the
preservation of the Qur'an: In the thread "Proof of The Preservation of the
Quran" I pointed to the fact that the Qur'an itself (and additional ahadith) has
preserved the traces of the deliberate destruction of rhyme, metric and melody
which -- as all over the world -- were the mnemonic means to preserve the
remembrance of the (original) texts. Unfortunately, none of the esteemed
participants of this newsgroup, including Dr. Saifullah, did comment.

Secondly, in sharp contrast to Biblical scholarship textual criticism of the
Qur'an (and related literature) hardly has started till the very last decades.
Orientalism has many excellent works on the Qur'an to its credit, but one has to
seek for a systematic application of the techniques of textual criticism to the
textual problems of the Qur'an. Research on this field therefore appears rather
rewarding. But even now one may state without exaggeration that Muhammad
wouldn't be able to recognize his Qur'an in its nowadays standard edition.

I kindly ask for your patience in regard to the second installment of my
posting, which is due to contain step 4.

Kind regards,
Christoph Heger


ov...@wxs.nl

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Jun 15, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/15/98
to

mar...@vom.com wrote:
>

If you want to answer the question, fine with me.

But please read the question correct:

Can you answer this questions with a yes or no, followed with evidence:

Do we, in this time, have a complete Quran in our possession from the
time of Muhammed (finished)?

> Yes.

Evidence?


Do we, in this time, have a complete Quran in our possession from the
time of Uthman (selected)?

> Yes.

Evidence?



I expect a normal answer.

> Hey, he asked for a yes or no answer. And for evidence to follow. So
> it will follow.

I will wait.

But according to your 'yes', is the place where it is kept also known?
(off course that is within the word 'evidence')

I hope you understand that evidence includes condition, date, place of
finding, where it is now, is it indeed complete or not etc etc
You know, all what can be explained of a historical discovery like there
are still things digged up in Egypt etc etc

If your 'yes' is the only thing you can give me, why is it that I have
doubt?

Your reply is not what I consider to be a 'normal answer'.

I am not the issue.

Regards,

Oving.

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 15, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/15/98
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On 13 Jun 1998, Jochen Katz wrote:

Assalamu-alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> You seem to have lost all sense for reality. Do you know how much


> 42,000 is? We have some 5,600 Greek manuscripts from the NT. That
> is a HUGE number. And that includes manuscripts all the way up to
> the 10th century.

Some how I missed the quote... It would not be surprising to see 5600
Greek manuscripts all the way upto 10th century (provided the report by
Katz is not a hoax!) because it was a crime to possess a copy of the Bible
by commonfolk in the dark ages. The church wielded such an authority that
anyone found possessing the copies of the Bible was severly punished. And
consequently, it is not surprising that the manuscripts available for the
Bible are less. Thanks to the cruelity of the church!

Compare this with the Qur'an. Muslims were encouraged to recite the Qur'an
and the copies of the Qur'an were always with Muslims right from the
beginning. Consequently, Muslims developed the art of writing the Qur'an
with a beautiful hand as well as beautified it with their voices. In the
time of Imaam Malik (ra) itself the written Qur'ans were used to teach the
young. As most of them are unaware that he did not like the vowelling the
text of the Qur'an but permitted it for the young children who are
learning the Qur'an by heart. And Allah knows best.

Calligraphy is not a specialized kind of art practiced by selected few. I
happen to see a Qur'an from Nigeria written in Maghribi script which is
about 400 years old. It is a hand-written Qur'an passed on from one
generation to another as the owner of the Qur'an (a Nigerian, of course)
mentioned to me. Some of its pages are loose and the edges blunted. In an
earlier post, I mentioned that the Qur'ans when they became old did not
end up in a junk yard. They were deposited in a Wakf which took care of
these torn and mutiliated copies with much reverence. This is an example
of how the Qur'an is treated by the Muslims. As far as I have seen not all
the Qur'ans had the expensive art work done it. The expensive work of
calligraphy was done for the rich and nobles.

Hence I would not be surprised to find 42,000+ manuscripts in various
states of decay keeping in mind that Islam spread far and wide in the
first 300AH.

Jochen Katz

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Jun 15, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/15/98
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In article <6m3rq0$7bb$1...@shell3.ba.best.com>,
sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp (Dr. M S M Saifullah) writes:

} > } Now for Katz: It is high time he gets some hardcore evidence for 42,000
} > } manuscript as a myth, inshallah. Why not beg or cajole Dr. Heger for a
} > } reference? Or else do not waste our time by letting hyperboles out. Empty
} > } vessels make lot of noise, as they say...
} >
} > No, the person who makes the positive claims has to bring the evidence.
}
} Katz is saying that a negative claim itself is not a claim and hence the
} burden of proof does not lie on him. I wonder who taught Katz logic.

I have taken university courses in logic. I wonder if Saifullah
can boast the same. It is amazing that he doesn't even know what
"negative claim" means even though I have explained it to him
before.

The adjectives "positive" and "negative" do NOT refer to the
issue whether you like the content of the claim. It is about
the existence or non-existence of the entity claimed.

When I say that Hitler is guilty of genocide on millions of
Jews, then this is a positive claim (I say, "this happened)
of a (very) negative fact. At least it is a negative fact
for most decent human beings. There are however others who
applauded the genocide. I will refrain from naming them here.
For them this would be a positive claim of a positive fact.

On the other hand, the claim that no man ever went to Jupiter
is a negative claim because it is a claim that a certain event
the content of the claim, did NOT take place. Or, another example,
"elves do not exist" (fairy land creatures) is a negative claim
as it refers to non-existence.

It is not my duty to prove the non-existence of elves. If you
want to have others believe in elves like you do, then you better
bring evidence for the claim, since you are the one who claims
their existence. You have the positive claim. I never can prove
they do not exist. Because I never can look "everywhere". You
always could say: Maybe you overlooked this, and have you also
searched there? ... Non-existence of creatures, living or inanimate
cannot be proven. That is elementary logic, because it would need
an infinite amount of work to check. Positive existence can be
proven by just pointing to it. "Here it is" and that is proof of
existence. That is why the burden of proof is logically on the
one with the positive claim.

You are the one who claims that there existed 42,000 such
manuscripts, so you are the one with the positive claim.
I say your claim is one based on no evidence. Hence I declare
this a myth. If you want me or others to believe your positive
claim, you should bring credible evidence for it and so far you
have not brought any. You quoted the claim of another, but
the quotation of another claim is not the same as evidence.

Is that so difficult to understand? But obviously it is me
who needs a course in logic and is just plain dense.

How about putting some substance to the noisy claim of 42,000
manuscripts? Empty vessels?

If you continue to ridicule me for not proving there were no
42,000 manuscripts and claiming that the burden of proof is
for me in this issue I will make this a web page. This is
ridiculous, because even people with average intelligence
usually can comprehend this, but if you insist on your approach,
I will even put this out on the web. And if it is out there,
then it is to stay. I would advise you to come to your senses.

} I can
} claim that trinitarian Christianity is all paganism which in my opinion is
} a negative claim and hence I do not have provide any evidence for that (In
} reality, if I do that, it will be an object of a big laugh).

Again, you don't know what negative and positive mean in this
context. If you say "this is that", i.e. "the doctrine of the
trinity is all paganism" then this is a positive claim of
something that you would like to make others feel negative
about. It is still a positive claim and your responsibility
to give evidence for it.

} Katz, of course, is well aware that neither Dr. Heger nor himself has any
} evidence to prove that 42,000 copies of the Qur'an is a myth. So, for this
} reason he has to take refuge in silly and cheap excuses like the one
} above. It is quite usual when a missionary wants to make a claim but can
} not provide evidence.

It is you who has now for the 4th or 5th time refused to give
the evidence FOR your claim of 42,000 manuscripts. Who is making
silly and cheap excuses and trying to place the burden of proof
on others? Just admit you have no evidence. It is plain to everyone
anyway.

Calling others silly and cheap is not going to impress the
thinking among the readers of SRI.

... snip ... to some quotations which again give not even
a hint to any number of manuscripts.

} Yes, it is definitely the most painful thing for Katz to gulp because
}
} 1. The proof is contradictory to his claims and hence it was not discussed
} at all. This, by the way, has more bad news for Gilchrist and his
} followers.

You love to switch topics, right? I asked you two specific
questions and you have refused to answer so far. Let me repeat:

Questions:

1. What is the source for the claim of 42,000 manuscripts?
2. What is the source of the claim that there were no textual
differences.

These are the ONLY two questions I was asking and this and
only this will be of interest to me at this time. All diversions
will not be acceptable.

} 2. There is no evidence provided by Katz except making a nice little noisy
} claim. It is not surprising how shameless missionaries like Katz can get
} after shamelessly copying someone else unverified claims!

And insults won't help it. They are no substitute for evidence.

} > To claim 42,000 manuscripts is a severe sign of having lost a sense
} > for reality.
}
} Not when one compares the history of writing in Islam and Christianity.

A glorious history which had the result that the countries
with the highest illiteracy rates are mostly Muslim nations.
Whom are you kidding?

} Till now, no evidence from Katz on this issue. Tell me in clear words when
} are you going to provide the evidence. I am most willing to wait for even
} half a year.

You will have to wait until you understand the difference between
negative and positive claim, and take your first course in elementary
logic and simple rules of reasoning.

I will provide evidence for the positive claims I make.
Maybe you would like to start doing the same?

Jochen Katz

Dr. Christoph Heger

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Jun 17, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/17/98
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Greetings to all,

In this second installment of mine I address in a fourth step questions,
which played some role in the preceding contributions of this thread, as the

myth of the 42,000 Munich manuscripts e.g.

Dr. Saifullah repeatedly recommended to check `Abdurraheem Green's
"Authoritative Explanation" at http://home.att.net/~r-squires/expo-toc.htm and
especially at http://home.att.net/~r-squires/expo-02d.htm, of which he thinks,
"it will definitely bring him [or anybody; Ch.H.] back to senses. To my
knowledge, this is a rebuttal of Jay Smith' "Uncomfortable Questions" at
http://debate.org.uk/topics/history/uncomfrt.htm or his "Is the Qur'an the Word
of God" at http://debate.org.uk/topics/history/debate/debate.htm.

Dr. Saifullah's high estimation for `Abdurraheem Green's rebuttal is mysterious
to me. The latter nearly doesn't use any factual arguments, but extensively
"personal cards" as oving in one of his initial postings remarked: a never
ending series of quotes of others -- mostly without paying attention to their
context -- which are showing nothing. Especially in Part 2 (D) of his
"Authoritative Explanation" Green maintains:

|The 'Institute fur Koranforschung' of the University of Munich, Germany, had
|collected and collated some 42,000 complete or incomplete copies of the Qur'an,
|gathered from all over the world. After some fifty years of study they reported
|that in terms of differences between the various copies there were no variants
|[these two words in fat letters; Ch.H.], except occasional mistakes of copyists
|which could easily be ascertained. The institute was destroyed by American
|bombs during the Second World War."

`Abdurraheem Green doesn't give any references for this astonishing claim. But a
year ago, on 18 Feb 1997, Mr. Daud R. Matthew shared with his co-participants of
the mailing list "History of Islam" <ISL...@ULKYVM.LOUISVILLE.EDU> a paper by
Sheikh al-hadith Mohammad Mustafa al-Azami, whom he introduced as a personal
friend of his. (By the way, I think this Sheikh al-hadith Mohammad Mustafa
al-Azami is the same as that Prof. Azami whose modest contributions to scholarly
research on hadith seduced Dr. Saifullah in his posting of 1 June 1998 to drivel
about "devastating refutation of Schacht and likes by Azmi".) In his paper,
titled "`Ijaz (Miracle) in Preserving the Sunna of the Prophet Mohammad (pbuh)"
Mohammad Mustafa al-Azami refers to "the following statement by Prof.
Hamidullah":

}The University of Munich had founded in the last century an institute of
}Qur'anic Research. After several generation of effort, when its Director, Prof.
}Pretzel [sic!] came to Paris in 1933, he told me that they had collected forty
}two thousand copies of the Qur'an of different epochs and different countries,
}some complete, others in fragments, some original, mostly photos of originals
}from all parts of the World. The work was relentlessly going on to collate each
}word of each copy of the Qur'an in the world, to find out if there are no
}variants. Shortly before the Second World War, a preliminary and tentative
}report was published that there are of course copying mistakes in the
}Manuscripts of the Qur'an, but no variants. During the war American bombs fell
}on this institute, and all was destroyed, Director, Personnel, Library and
}all."

Dr. Azami didn't provide any reference for this quote of Dr. Hamidullah.
Therefore one owes thanks to Dr. Saifullah that he in his posting of 3 June 1998
eventually traced back the story to a specific publication by Dr. Hamidullah:

>Dr. Hamidullah, who had met Dr. Pretzl when the latter came to Paris to collect
>photocopies of the Qur'anic manuscripts available in the libraries there[21],

>says that PRETZL told him: "Our Institute (Archive) has collected the

>photographs of 42,000 copies of the Qur'an and we are collating them"[22] and
>that, after accomplishing this task before its destruction, issued a
>'provisional report' that according to him, reads:
>

>"The work of collation of various copies of the Qur'an is not completed yet.
>However, on the basis of the work accomplished so far, we can say that there
>are occasional mistakes of the copyists, but there is no textual difference
>found (in the 42,000 copies of the Qur'an, which have been collated)."[23]
>

>[21] MUHAMMAD HAMIDULLAH, Khutubat-e-Bahawalpur, 1401AH, Islamic University,
> Bahawalpur, Pakistan, p.15-16.
>[22] MUHAMMAD HAMIDULLAH, Op.Cit, p.16
>[23] MUHAMMAD HAMIDULLAH, Op.Cit, p.15-16

Astonishingly enough, Dr. Saifullah refused to answer Jochen Katz' question
whether Dr. Hamidullah in the cited work gives any reference to where the latter
got those alleged quotes from, especially where this alleged "provisional
report" is to be found. It should be easy for Dr. Saifullah to answer this
question. Why doesn't he?

Whether Dr. Hamidullah, on the other hand, actually does or does not give the
references is irrelevant. The whole story is a hoax, and one should be hesitant
to give him any credit if he actually gave the reference Jochen Katz asked for,
since a series of false statements of Dr. Hamidullah and his blind adherents
are to be remarked:

1. There never was any "Institute of Qur'anic Research" at the University of
Munich, neither founded in the last century nor later. Green's attempt to look
very authentic in using the (orthographically wrong) German words "Institute fur
Koranforschung" is typical for this whole attitude of deceptive pretension.
There actually was in Munich a collection of documents of old Qur'an manuscripts
which you may address as a "Qur'an archive". Dr. Saifullah's tries to blur this
difference by adding "archive" in brackets after "institute". It's however a
great difference, at least in German academic life.

2. Nowhere a number of the Qur'ans documented in this collection has been
published. The number of allegedly forty two thousand copies of the Qur'an in
this collection is a myth. Dr. Saifullah's request that I should give a proof
for the non-existence of these forty two thousand copies is ridiculous and
revealing his idea of scholarship. The fact is that none of the scholars
involved in this project (Bergstraesser, Pretzl, Jeffery) anywhere has published
such a number, which for factual reasons is a silly exaggeration.

3. It's a myth, the more, that the above mentioned scholars were to find out
that there are no variants. On the contrary, there is an immense number of
variants and they fill eight volumes of the edition of variants which I quoted
in my first installment. Dr. Saifullah should have been able to realize the
contradiction between the alleged lack of textual variants in the Qur'ans of
this collection and "its use for the 'Critical Edition' of the Qur'an", as he
himself specifies the aim of the scholars involved in this project: If there
were no variants, there hardly would have been such a desire to get this
critical edition. Dr. Saifullah himself quotes Jeffery, that this is a "gigantic
task", obviously not because there were no variants in the early manuscripts and
fragments. Therefore this critical edition of the Qur'an still is lacking, till
today.

4. Otto Pretzl (thus the correct spelling) was killed during WW II outside
Sebastopol on October 28, 1941. That is not the place and very probably also not
the date when those parts of the university of Munich, which contained the
Qur'an collection, were destroyed by allied bombs.

What is true of this story is the following: The plan of Gotthelf Bergstraesser,
Arthur Jeffery and later Otto Pretzl to prepare a critical edition of the Qur'an
- comparable perhaps the critical edition of the New Testament by Nestle and
later Aland - was not realized, and the collection of variants, which these
scholars derived from real old codices, failed to survive the bombs of WW II.
What Prof. Hamidullah in 1933 allegedly got as "personal communication" from
Pretzl in Paris and what he addressed as "a preliminary and tentative report"
cannot be checked or is a fiction of his, respectively. What was published
before WW II, is the following:

Arthur Jeffery: Materials from the History of the Text of the
Qur'an. Leiden (Brill) 1937, p. vii, 3-4, and

Otto Pretzl in: Theodor Noeldeke: Geschichte des Qorans. Dritter
Teil: Die Geschichte des Korantextes, von G. Bergstraesser und
O. Pretzl. Leipzig 1938, p. 249-251, 274.

As for the rest, all assertions of which apparently Dr. Hamidullah's cited work
is the source are wrong. He and his followers seem to be representatives of that
kind of scholarship which only can flourish where contradiction and
enlightenment are threatened by a notorious blasphemy law.

Kind regards,
Christoph Heger

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 17, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/17/98
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In article <6m498u$rqn$1...@usenet01.srv.cis.pitt.edu>, sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp
(Dr. M S M Saifullah) wrote:

>Dr. Heger not so fast.... Ubayy Ibn Ka'ab was on the committee of the
>'Uthmanic recension of the Qur'an. Why not check out Labib as-Said's 'The
>Recited Qur'an' ('Mushaf al-Murattal' in Arabic), Translated by Rauf et
>al. He did not have objection to let his 'version' destroyed.

Since this quote was citied from the memory, I went home and checked the
book. This name, publishers and authors are as follows:

"The Recited Koran" by Labib as-Said (Translated by Bernard Weiss, M A
Rauf & Morroe Berger), Darwin Press, Princeton NJ.

The original book in Arabic is al-Jam' al-sawti al-awwal li'l Qur'an
al-Karim, al-Mushaaf al-Murattal, Bawaithuhu wa Mukhattatatuh.

My sincere apologies for the partial quotation.

The issue of Ubayy Ibn Ka'ab as well as Ibn 'Abbas being included in the
recension committee by 'Uthman is on pp. 26.

Jochen Katz

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Jun 17, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/17/98
to

In article <6m3rpq$7ah$1...@shell3.ba.best.com>,
sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp (Dr. M S M Saifullah) writes:

} In article <6lupm9$7gb$1...@shell3.ba.best.com>, mar...@vom.com wrote:

} > What is striking to me about this whole issue is how scarce real
} > knowledge and information is concerning it. I have never seen, for
} > example, any photographs of any portion of the Topkapi manuscript of
} > the Qur'an, also attributed to 'Uthman, nor of the 'Ali manuscript at
} > Najaf. It is quite apparent that Islamic scholarship is still in the
} > dark ages....

I have to congratulate Mr. Lomax for his balanced statements on
this topic. He certainly puts the finger on the essential issue
here. There are lots and lots of claims made, but why do we not
have a photographic reproduction of those earliest manuscripts?
Why are they not made available to all to examine?

And why has one very old manuscript that is in Cairo been taken
OFF from display and cannot any longer be seen by the public
in addition to not having the pages published? All those
manuscripts have supposedly been known for a long time, those
are not "recent findings". What is the reason for "hiding"
their text from the public?

These are certainly important questions. Saifullah is
responding with some strange reasoning, similar to all
those who make grand claims about those unexaminable
manuscripts:

} Apparently brother Lomax has not ventured into Islamic scholarship and he
} is in dark about it.

When you can't give a reasonable answer, then there is always
the option to deride the person who asked the uncomfortable
question. I am used to that. But now you turn on your own
brother whose help you acknowledged in earlier articles.

} There are quite a few books on Calligraphy and dating
} of the Qur'anic manuscripts in Arabic and none of them are known to us.

Mr. Lomax did not ask about books on calligraphy or on dating,
he asked about publishing the manuscripts. That is a different
topic.

You are again as so often changing the topic if you don't
want to deal with the problem that is raised.

Furthermore, just listen to yourself: "There are quite a few
books ... and none of them are not known to us." How do you
know they exist if neither title nor author are known to you?

In any case, the issue is the actual text of the manuscripts
not a history of calligraphy or the like. Please stick to
the topic.

Sincerely,

Jochen Katz

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/19/98
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In article <6m9cdj$fhp$1...@usenet01.srv.cis.pitt.edu>,
Christo...@t-online.de (Dr. Christoph Heger) wrote:

Hello Dr. Heger!

At last you are back with something on this issue. But let us examine your
esteemed and learned evidence on the issue of myth.

> Astonishingly enough, Dr. Saifullah refused to answer Jochen Katz' question
> whether Dr. Hamidullah in the cited work gives any reference to where
the latter
> got those alleged quotes from, especially where this alleged "provisional
> report" is to be found. It should be easy for Dr. Saifullah to answer this
> question. Why doesn't he?

There is nothing astonishing there. I have already written to the people
to send me the complete reference of Hamidullah's book and his quotation.
This has been dealt by me in a previous post in this thread. It will take
some time and when I hear from them, I will be most willing to start the
topic all over again.

Let us now examine what Dr. Heger has to say:

> 1. There never was any "Institute of Qur'anic Research" at the University of
> Munich, neither founded in the last century nor later. Green's attempt
to look
> very authentic in using the (orthographically wrong) German words
"Institute fur
> Koranforschung" is typical for this whole attitude of deceptive pretension.
> There actually was in Munich a collection of documents of old Qur'an
manuscripts
> which you may address as a "Qur'an archive". Dr. Saifullah's tries to
blur this
> difference by adding "archive" in brackets after "institute". It's however a
> great difference, at least in German academic life.

Actually, my quote is from the book of Arthur Jeffery. Let me re-quote the
whole message again if Dr. Heger has trouble understanding my point.

Jeffery's collaboration with Bergstrasser and Pretzl concerning the
'Critical Text of the Qur'an'.

"Meanwhile Dr. Pretzl, Bergstrasser's successor at Munich, has begun to
organize the Archive for the Korankomission set up by the Bavarian Academy
at Bergstrasser's initiation, and has already assembled a goodly
collection of photographs early Kufic Codices and early unpublished
Qira'at works."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.vii.]

Jeffery was forced to admit after Bergstrasser went through the 'goodly
collection of photographs of early Kufic Codices as well as unpublished
Qira'at works' that:

"Bergstrasser in his preliminary collection of the uncanonical readings of
Ibn Mas'ud and Ubai made an attempt to estimate the value of these two
texts as compared with the 'Uthmanic text. With increase of material one
feels less inclined to venture on such a judgement of value."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.16]

So, the material in the so-called 'rival Codices' is same as that of
'Uthmanic recension.

Secondly, I did not add anything like 'archive' in the brackets. Neither
did I copy the quote from 'Abdurraheem Green's material.

> 2. Nowhere a number of the Qur'ans documented in this collection has been
> published. The number of allegedly forty two thousand copies of the Qur'an in
> this collection is a myth. Dr. Saifullah's request that I should give a proof
> for the non-existence of these forty two thousand copies is ridiculous and
> revealing his idea of scholarship. The fact is that none of the scholars
> involved in this project (Bergstraesser, Pretzl, Jeffery) anywhere has
published
> such a number, which for factual reasons is a silly exaggeration.

Well, I do not publish most of the research that I do in semiconductors.
Most of the things that I convey in by the word of mouth. My colleagues in
Cambridge and in Japan do not complain that my research is a myth.
Non-existence of research on a piece of paper does not mean that it never
existed or it was never done and branding it as a myth.

Secondly, Jeffery hints from Bergstrasser's work that he "has already


assembled a goodly collection of photographs early Kufic Codices and early
unpublished
Qira'at works."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.vii.]

Now what does this 'goodly' collection mean? A few scraps of
paper/parchments? May be Dr. Heger would be kind enough to explain this to
me in clear English.

Thirdly, it is agreed upon that there was a collection of manuscripts at
Archive for the Korankomission. What we are unaware is that how many of
the manuscripts existed?



> 3. It's a myth, the more, that the above mentioned scholars were to find out
> that there are no variants. On the contrary, there is an immense number of
> variants and they fill eight volumes of the edition of variants which I
quoted
> in my first installment.

Tell me Dr. Heger: How is Qira'at translated in English? Is it variant reading?

Adrian Brockett in his article 'The Value of Hafs and Warsh Transmissions
For The Textual History of The Qur'an' in deals with various issues of the
orally transmitted traditions and the seven Qira'at in which the Qur'an
can be recited. His conclusions regarding the oral side of Qur'an's
transmission is:

"The transmission of the Qur'an after the death of Muhammad was
essentially static, rather than organic. There was a single text, and
nothing significant, not even allegedly abrogated material, could be taken
out nor could anything be put in. This is applied even to the early
Caliphs. The efforts of those scholars who attempt to reconstruct any
other hypothetical original versions of the (written) text are therefore
shown to be disregarding half the essence of Muslim scripture."

[Approaches Of The History Of Interpretation Of The Qur'an, 1988, Edited
by Andrew Rippin, Clarendon Press, Oxford, pp. 44]

Dr. Heger seems to have a very selective memory concerning the modern
scholarship on the Qur'an and various Qira'at. What is he afraid of?

> What is true of this story is the following: The plan of Gotthelf
Bergstraesser,
> Arthur Jeffery and later Otto Pretzl to prepare a critical edition of
the Qur'an
> - comparable perhaps the critical edition of the New Testament by Nestle and
> later Aland - was not realized, and the collection of variants, which these
> scholars derived from real old codices, failed to survive the bombs of WW II.
> What Prof. Hamidullah in 1933 allegedly got as "personal communication" from
> Pretzl in Paris and what he addressed as "a preliminary and tentative report"
> cannot be checked or is a fiction of his, respectively. What was published
> before WW II, is the following:
>
> Arthur Jeffery: Materials from the History of the Text of the
> Qur'an. Leiden (Brill) 1937, p. vii, 3-4, and

I agree with you Dr. Heger. And I also believe that you have not read the
above book either. Let me requote what is there in the above book:

Jeffery's collaboration with Bergstrasser and Pretzl concerning the
'Critical Text of the Qur'an'.

"Meanwhile Dr. Pretzl, Bergstrasser's successor at Munich, has begun to
organize the Archive for the Korankomission set up by the Bavarian Academy
at Bergstrasser's initiation, and has already assembled a goodly
collection of photographs early Kufic Codices and early unpublished
Qira'at works."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.vii.]

Jeffery was forced to admit after Bergstrasser went through the 'goodly
collection of photographs of early Kufic Codices as well as unpublished
Qira'at works' that:

"Bergstrasser in his preliminary collection of the uncanonical readings of
Ibn Mas'ud and Ubai made an attempt to estimate the value of these two
texts as compared with the 'Uthmanic text. With increase of material one
feels less inclined to venture on such a judgement of value."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.16]

So, the material in the so-called 'rival Codices' is same as that of
'Uthmanic recension.

Is that very clear to you?

Elsewhere Jeffery while mentioning various Codices, hints the lack of
textual variations in the manuscripts:

"It is of course obvious that all the information we can gather regarding
the text of these early Codices is of the utmost importance for the
textual importance of the Qur'an. This in the absence of any direct
manuscript evidence gives us our sole witness to the types of the text
which 'Uthman's standard text superseded."

Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The

Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.14-15.

I am quoting all from YOUR book.

> As for the rest, all assertions of which apparently Dr. Hamidullah's
cited work
> is the source are wrong. He and his followers seem to be representatives
of that
> kind of scholarship which only can flourish where contradiction and
> enlightenment are threatened by a notorious blasphemy law.

Now even after this analysis where is the evidence that Hamidullah's
source is wrong? It is an interesting exercise of 'opinion'. No one cares
about your 'opinion' if you can not back up with evidence. Repeating 1000
times that it is a myth is not going to get make me take a different
decision.

Consequently, Dr. Heger and his copy cat friend seem to be the
representatives of that of of scholarship which can only flourish where
contradictions and ignorance are present.

By the way, there is no difference in the 'analysis' of Dr. Heger on
soc.religion.islam as well as Islam-L list. Both have the same cruchline.
Repeat the myth statement without providing evidence.

Lastly, I admire Dr. Heger's 'efforts' to at least give it a try rather to
'prove' that it is a myth unlike Katz who is a simple albeit shameless
copy-cat and no argument to offer.

Regards

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/19/98
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On 17 Jun 1998, Jochen Katz wrote:

Assalamu-alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> I have to congratulate Mr. Lomax for his balanced statements on


> this topic. He certainly puts the finger on the essential issue
> here. There are lots and lots of claims made, but why do we not
> have a photographic reproduction of those earliest manuscripts?
> Why are they not made available to all to examine?

Katz is only left with congratulating people like brother Lomax and other
muslims every now and then. It seems that he has no argument to offer
except to have ride with someone who agrees with his pre-conceptions.

> } Apparently brother Lomax has not ventured into Islamic scholarship and he
> } is in dark about it.
>
> When you can't give a reasonable answer, then there is always
> the option to deride the person who asked the uncomfortable
> question. I am used to that. But now you turn on your own
> brother whose help you acknowledged in earlier articles.

Well, I do not follow the technique used by Katz, i.e., when you do not
have the evidence, make lot of noisy claims, call people 'Lowly Person'
and then feel as if the argument is won. Brother Lomax is a wise person,
mashallah, and I do not expect him to get down to something in which he
has not knowledge of and make sweeping statements. He himself has not
backed his claim by any evidence. So, it is worthless to claim something
with out evidence.

I have a few references in Arabic to offer to show where Katz, who is now
riding on the back of brother Lomax, and brother Lomax himself stand.

The first reference is:

Rihlat ul-Mushaf ish-shareef Min al-Jareed ila-ttajleed: 1993 (First
Print) Hassan Qaasim Habash al-Bayaati, Daar al-Qalam, Beirut, Lebanon.

Some of the images from this book can be viewed at:

http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Olympus/5603/offa.html

I would ask brother Ghoniem ( who has exams right now!) to scan as many
images as possible, inshallah, from this book to show where brother Lomax
and Katz's statements stand. Some of the manuscripts there not available
in the Orientalists' books.

Below are a 'few' books in Arabic/persian dealing with Arabic
Calligraphy/manuscripts etc. I am in a process of getting a few of these
interesting books.

-----------

Tarikh al-Khatim al-Arabi by Dr Salah ad-Din al-Munjid

-----------

Tarikh al-Mushaf al-'Uthman fi-Tashkent by Makhdun

-----------

Author: Kurdi, Muhammad Tahir ibn `Abd 'al-Qadir
Title: Tarikh 'al-khatt 'al-`Arabi wa-'adabuhu: huwa kitab tarikhi
'ijtima`i 'adabi, muzayyan bi-'al-suwar 'al-khattiyah
wa-'al-rusum 'al-futughrafiyah/ ta'lif Muhammad Tahir ibn
`Abd 'al-Qadir 'al-Kurdi 'al-Makki 'al-Khattat
'al-Tab`ah 1
'al-Qahirah: Maktabat 'al-Hilal, 1939
470p; 25cm
Notes: Includes bibliographical references (p. 148-149)
Subjects: Calligraphy, Arabic

------------

Author: Qilich…khani, Hamid Riza
Title: Farhang-i vazhgah va istilahat-i khushnivisi va hunarha-yi
vabastah/ Hamid Riza Qilich…khani
Chap-i 1
[Tihran]: Rawzanah, 1373 [1995]
14, 301p; 25cm
Notes: Includes Persian-English and English-Persian word lists
Includes bibliographical references (p. [255]-262)
English t.p.: Dictionary of calligraphy and the related
arts
In Persian; pref. also in English
Subjects: Calligraphy, Persian--Dictionaries--Persian
Illumination of books and manuscripts, Iranian--
Dictionaries--Persian
Miniature painting, Iranian--Dictionaries--Persian

----------

Author: Zayn 'al-Din, Naji
Title: Bada'i` 'al-khatt 'al-`Arabi/ Naji Zayn 'al-Din 'al-Masrif;
raja`ahu wa-haqqaqa lughatahu `Abd 'al-Razzaq `Abd
'al-Wahid
Baghdad: Mudiriyat 'al-Thaqafah 'al-`Ammah, 1972
504p; 28cm
Series title: 'al-Silsilah 'al-Fanniyah; 19
Notes: Title on added t.p.: The beauties of Arabic calligraphy
Subjects: Calligraphy, Arabic

------------

Last but not the least. Ever bothered to check Nabia Abbott's book 'The
Rise of Arabic...'? She quotes Fihrist of al-Nadim most of the time when
it comes to the binding, material used for calligraphy etc. al-Nadim was a
Muslim who wrote about the culture of Muslims. So, it was Muslims who
wrote about their own culture before Orientalists started using their
material. Is that not a bigger evidence?

> These are certainly important questions. Saifullah is
> responding with some strange reasoning, similar to all
> those who make grand claims about those unexaminable
> manuscripts:

Let us after all this how Katz responds to this evidence now.

> In any case, the issue is the actual text of the manuscripts
> not a history of calligraphy or the like. Please stick to
> the topic.

What make Katz to deviate from the topic and take a ride on brother
Lomax's back? Why can not he stick to the topic and show some evidence of
the myth?

Wassalam

Dr. M S M Saifullah

unread,
Jun 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/19/98
to

In article <6lupm9$7gb$1...@shell3.ba.best.com>, mar...@vom.com wrote:

> as-salamu 'alaykum.

Walaikumus-salaam wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> What is striking to me about this whole issue is how scarce real


> knowledge and information is concerning it. I have never seen, for
> example, any photographs of any portion of the Topkapi manuscript of
> the Qur'an, also attributed to 'Uthman, nor of the 'Ali manuscript at
> Najaf. It is quite apparent that Islamic scholarship is still in the
> dark ages....

Concerning the dark ages argument of Islamic scholarship, I have already
sent a list of Islamic references. I happen to run across another Islamic
book which deals with various masahif. As far as my knowledge goes it also
deals with the Masahif which 'Uthman (ra) sent to various cities. The book
is:

Ma'al Masaahif: Yusuf Ibraheem an-Nur, Dar al-Manar, Dubai, 1st Edition, 1993.

I was told by brother 'Abd ar-Rahmaan Robert Squires that the book
'Cultural Atlas of Islam' (Ismail Faruqi) contains the
parchment/manuscripts attributed to 'Umar (Circa 13-23 A. H. / 634-644 C.
E. in Topkapi Museum) and 'Ali (Circa 20-40 A. H. / 642-661 C. E. at
Najaf). I do not have this book. May be someone can confirm this too as
the book is not available with me.

Search, and you will find!

AltWay

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Jun 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/19/98
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In article <6m9cdj$fhp$1...@usenet01.srv.cis.pitt.edu>,
Christo...@t-online.de (Dr. Christoph Heger) wrote:

"In this second installment of mine I address in a fourth step questions,
which played some role in the preceding contributions of this thread, as
the myth of the 42,000 Munich manuscripts e.g. Dr. Saifullah repeatedly
recommended to check `Abdurraheem Green's "Authoritative Explanation" at
http://home.att.net/~r-squires/expo-toc.htm and especially at
http://home.att.net/~r-squires/expo-02d.htm, of which he thinks,
"it will definitely bring him [or anybody; Ch.H.] back to senses. To my
knowledge, this is a rebuttal of Jay Smith' "Uncomfortable Questions" at
http://debate.org.uk/topics/history/uncomfrt.htm or his "Is the Qur'an the
Word of God" at http://debate.org.uk/topics/history/debate/debate.htm."

Question :-

So what are we to make of all these controversies?
Is it that there is not sufficient evidence either way that the Quran is in
its original state?
Is it that there are more than gramatical variations, e.g variations in
wording, arrangement, and even meaning?
Has any inconsistency in meaning or obvious contradictions been found? If so
who is it that thought that they were contradictions?

Is this an attempt to show that the Quran has undergone changes just like
the New Testament and can be relied on no more than the New Testament?
Or is it an attempt to rehabilitate the New Testament by showing that the
state of the Quran is worse?
Are there any Apocryphal works of the Quran or parts of it?

You wrote that Muhammad would not be able to recognise today's Quran. Is
this a serious assertion? What does it refer to? That all the verses have
been altered or that their arrangement has been altered to yield another
meaning. If so, do you have an original with which you have compared the
modern Quran in order to come to this conclusion?

In a previous article you were trying to change a verse in the Quran (which
you thought made no sense) to yield a meaning which would conform more with
your understanding. Is this what you have been attempting with other verses
to reach the conclusion that the verses as they are found in the Quran must
be wrong?

I and, no doubt, others would be most interested in the answers.

H.S.Aziz


--
_ ___ _ _____________________________________________
|_| | | | | |_| \ / /
| | |_ | |/\| | | | /... For more info Read "The Alternative Way"
_______________________/ ... on www.argonet.co.uk/education/haziz
______________________/ ... ha...@argonet.co.uk


oving

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Jun 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/19/98
to

Dr. Christoph Heger wrote:
>
> |The 'Institute fur Koranforschung' of the University of Munich, Germany, had
> |collected and collated some 42,000 complete or incomplete copies of the Qur'an,
> |gathered from all over the world. After some fifty years of study they reported
> |that in terms of differences between the various copies there were no variants
> |[these two words in fat letters; Ch.H.], except occasional mistakes of copyists
> |which could easily be ascertained. The institute was destroyed by American
> |bombs during the Second World War."

In some Muslim sites supporting this claim it is mentioned that the
number 42000 is the number of complete Quran manuscripts, complete or
incomplete during the centuries TILL NOW.

So if such a number is right, it has to be concluded that it is a number
of Qurans, complete or incomplete from some 12 centuries.

If that same 'tactic' is used on a particular other book we all know as
the most printed book of the world, than 42000 is a very low number
compared to the 'other book' what is so called 'replaced' by a 'better'
one.

Off course the point 'better' is not the issue here, but the number
42000 is a weak argument to claim such as superiority in 'historical
preservation'.

Mr. Saifullah was, as Mr. Green and others, not able to show ONE
complete Quran from the time of Muhammed or Uthman, so there are great
doubts about so called 'preservation of Quran' when is looked at
possession of complete manuscript of Quran.

Also this 42000 number creates only doubt, because it is no argument for
comparing or making something clear that Quran is 'unique' in history.

42000 is a nice number (it is 2210,52631579 * 19) but is says nothing,
and makes no point at all.
(that besides the facing of reality that it is almost for sure a myth).

If humans think that the God is only expressed in a particular book
because of the highest number of existing manuscript then the goal is
missed.

The MEANING AND CONSEQUENSE of the message in such a particular book is
relevant to make a study of what is 'better', 'good' or truth.

So even when there are 4 billion existing manuscripts of a book and the
teaching, meaning and consequense are false, the number of 4 billion is
not saying anything besides it makes clear the old knowledge that
following numbers is a human habit.

Let us seek the Heavenly territory.

Regards,

Oving.

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 20, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/20/98
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In article <6m9cdj$fhp$1...@usenet01.srv.cis.pitt.edu>,
Christo...@t-online.de (Dr. Christoph Heger) wrote:

Assalamu-alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> In this second installment of mine I address in a fourth step questions,

> which played some role in the preceding contributions of this thread, as the
> myth of the 42,000 Munich manuscripts e.g.

Now let us briefly examine the so called myth of 42,000 manuscripts of the
Qur'an from a point of view of Islamic history. This is because I do not
expect either Dr. Heger or his copy cat friend to get any hard-core
evidence in the near future concerning the myth issue except repeating it
like a parrot and standing on it like an obstinate donkey.

The last (i.e., the latest) calligraphic manuscripts that I came across is
around 1844 CE. The example of which can be seen in the book

"The Recited Koran" by Labib as-Said (Translated by Bernard Weiss, M A
Rauf & Morroe Berger), Darwin Press, Princeton NJ.

So, calligraphy was practiced even in the 19th century. It will be hard to
believe that there are no calligraphic Qur'ans in 20th century, as it is
well known that Muslims practice calligraphy even now.

About our discussion on Jeffery's idea of making a 'Critical Text Of The
Qur'an', he mentions about Bergstrasser's "goodly collection of
photographs early Kufic Codices and early unpublished Qira'at works".

"Meanwhile Dr. Pretzl, Bergstrasser's successor at Munich, has begun to
organize the Archive for the Korankomission set up by the Bavarian Academy
at Bergstrasser's initiation, and has already assembled a goodly
collection of photographs early Kufic Codices and early unpublished
Qira'at works."

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.vii.]

For sure we do not know how much was in the 'goodly collection' of
Bergstrasser's archive.

About half a year ago my wife bought me a book called

'Arabic Writing And Arabic Libraries', S M Imaamuddin, 1983, Taha
Publishers, London.

This is a small but well written book on Arabic script as well as Arabic
libraries from the time of Ummayds till Muslim Spain.

Let me begin with Fatamid library:

"The Muslim culture and civilization reached its zenith during the time of
al-'Aziz (975-96), son of Mu'izz who founded a big library called Khaza'in
al-Qusur consisting of forty room. They were 1600,000 books and booklets
of which 600,000 were books and dealt with theology, grammar, dictionary,
tradition, history, geography, astronomy, chemistry. Of these 6,000 books
were on mathematics and astronomy alone. There were thirty copies of the
Kitab al-'ayn of Khalil b. Ahmad including a copy in original, twelve
copies of the Tarikh Tabari and 2,000 copies of the Qur'an copied by
famous calligraphists."[pp. 42]

And later:

"al-Hakim, son of 'Aziz established his library at Cairo in 395/1004
attached to the Hall of learning (Daru'l 'Ilm or Daru'l Hikmah) which
imparted free education and supported teachers, scholars and students with
endowments. It contained 600,000 volumes or at least 100,000 the minimum
out of which 2,400 were the illuminated copies of the Qur'an and 18,000
books on ancient learning. The rest of the collection dealt with
jurisprudence, grammar, rhetoric, history, biography, astronomy and
chemistry." [pp. 42-43]

Now what we are talking about here is just couple of collections of
manuscripts of Qur'ans in libraries which amounted to almost 4,400 around
400AH! We have not dealt with those Qur'anic manuscripts present in other
parts of Muslims world, i.e., the libraries in Baghdad, Kufa, Basra,
Madinah and the ones in the private collection and in the mosques.

Now some of the libaries were burnt buy the Mongols and only after the
conversion to Islam Mongols started taking interest in literary
activities. When Timur invaded he took some books and made libraries in
Samarqand.

Now let us turn to the Muslim Spain and their libraries. Starting with
Hakam II, the lexicographer of Cordova:

"The chief librarian of Hakam's library was a high ranking enunch, Talid,
according to whom there were 400,000 volumes of books in his royal
library." [pp. 51]

Also it is stated that

"seventy to eighty thousand volumes of books were copied approximately
each year in Cordova alone" [pp. 57]

There are also interesting references to private collections of books (all
of them manuscripts!) which the interested reader might go through.

Now when the followers of Prince of Peace, peace-loving,
turn-the-other-cheek, resist-not-your-enemies Christians occupied Granada,
what did they do apart from slaughtering Muslims and Jews? Imaamuddin
quoted Nicholson saying:

"He (Cardinal Ximines de Cisneros) wished to annihilate the record of
seven centuries of Muhammadan culture in a single day" [pp. 62]

"According to Ribera, who wrote a biography of Cardinal Ximines, the
number of Arabic manuscripts consumed was one million and five thousand."
[pp. 62]

Now it would be interesting to know what kinds of books were destroyed.

"The collections in the Muslim libraries of Granada, except works dealing
with philosophy, medicine and history, were taken to plaza of Bibarrambla
and burnt at the order of Cardinal Ximines de Cisneros." [pp. 62]

This means the Qur'an, hadith, tafseer, sirah, etc. all turned into ashes.
Even if the number of copies of the Qur'an were 5% of one million (going
with an underestimated value), it would come to 50,000.

The conservative estimates put the destruction of the number of
manuscripts to be around two million. Is it not strange that the same
peace-loving, turn-the-other-cheek, resist-not-your-enemies Christians who
destroyed the grand libraries which had thousands of manuscripts are
asking for 42,000 manuscripts of the Qur'an and calling them as a myth?
After such shameless acts they are still unashamed even after a few
centuries.

Going further another biographer of Cardinal Ximines called Simonet said that

"...Muslims were uncivilized and their libraries did not possess such a
large number of books."[pp. 62]

Sounds like a familiar lies against Muslims?! This is contradicted by
Ribera (who also wrote the biography of Ximines) who admitted that:

"the Muslims of Spain were highly civilized, even more tham their brethren
in the East, and that their libraries at Granada were rich enough to have
possessed two million books." [pp. 62]

After all this destruction, some manuscripts were survived. Let us shift
our attention to Philip III. He was requested to deposit the banned Arabic
manuscripts lying with a servant of Juan Idiaquez and others, in the
Monastry along with the other manuscripts in the Escurial library.

"Francisco de Guarmendi after scrutinizing the title and other contents of
the manuscripts submitted a report to the Emperor saying that about 2000
manuscripts were the copies of the Qur'an and its commentaries and 2000
manuscripts were on various subjects including philosophy, mathematics and
medicine...." [pp. 69]

In 1651, Muley Muhammad sent a delegation Philip IV to get the manuscripts
back to Morroco.

"This time also the members of the council of state and the Inquisition
were divided on their opinion. Many were of the opinion that the copies of
the Qur'an should be burnt and the rest might be returned, while some
others were of the opinion that except the copies of the Qur'an and Hadith
the manuscripts might be returned and a few absolute in minority were of
the opinion that the whole lot might be returned to the ruler of Morroco.
However the negotiations failed and the books were not returned." [pp. 70]

So, what happened to the manuscripts. Well, the usual story of library
catching fire etc. Well, where does this leave peace-loving,
turn-the-other-cheek, resist-not-your-enemies Christians missionaries?
Boxed in a hole?

After all this destruction of manuscripts in Spain, only a handful
survived and they can be seen at various libraries in Spain today. But
then we have not taken into account the Qur'anic manuscripts elsewhere in
the Muslim world which already knocked the doors of China, Africa and
Asia. Just estimate the number of manuscripts which Muslims might be
possessing today from the advent of Islam, with different degrees of
damage. I would estimate it to be more than 100,000 keeping the Islamic
history in mind as well as how muslims treated the Qur'an.

Now Dr. Heger, please make your Holy Ghost do some work and get the
evidence that 42,000 manuscripts of the Qur'an is a myth. Your
pseudo-scholarly analysis does not seem to impress anyone of me or anyone
on soc.religion.islam.

Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 20, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/20/98
to

On 19 Jun 1998, oving wrote:

> Mr. Saifullah was, as Mr. Green and others, not able to show ONE
> complete Quran from the time of Muhammed or Uthman, so there are great
> doubts about so called 'preservation of Quran' when is looked at
> possession of complete manuscript of Quran.

OK smart boy! you were also asked to get the manuscript evidence of
whatever is there in the OT and NT right from the time of Jesus or Moses
(p). Where is your evidence?

I have already quoted what ever references I have and they all say that
the Qur'an that we have today is from the time of Muhammad. May be it is
time your quote from a scholar who says for sure that the Qur'an is
corrupted. Till now there is no evidence. By the way, do not try those
tricks of riding on someone else's argument, e.g., Dr. Heger's myth
argument of 42,000 manuscripts of Qur'an. His pseudo-scholarly analysis
has not taken him any far and please do not expect that you will go
farther than that.

Finally, let me enlighten your Holy Ghost (if not you!) on your own books.
Let me start off with OT

"Even long after the more occasional use of script the oral transmission
of 'spiritual' knowledge was considered normal. In the East learning by
heart is unto this day the normal way of transmitting even the longest
written texts, as the Koran and its commentaries. With the Jews both the
Mishna and Talmud were orally transmitted for centuries; in the synagogue
it was long forbidden to say the Torah from a written scroll; also the
Aramaic and Greek translations were originally given orally, but in a
traditional fixed form."

[The Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible, vol.4, p.684. Abingdon Press: 1962]

So, no manuscript evidence of OT from the earliest times. How do we
believe that the Bible is 'preserved'? And on NT

"It is safe to say that there is not one sentence in the New Testament in
which the manuscript tradition is wholly uniform."

[The Interpreters Dictionary of the Bible, Abingdon Press:1962 in 4
volumes, under the heading 'Text, NT'.]

Same argument follows. So, do not cry the age old argument oh! we have
thousands of manuscripts etc. etc. We have heard all those on this
newsgroup. You should also check the mistakes in the most celebrated Codex
Sinaiticus when compared with other manuscripts. I should not be the one
informing you about all this.

You guys just cannot unite on one Bible. Catholics have their own,
Protestant have their own and Copts have their own. Those who live in
glass houses should not throw stones, is it not?

And please, so not waste my time with your silly arguments. If you do not
have any evidence to show for the lack of preservation of the Qur'an, keep
quite and watch the show.

Adnan

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Jun 20, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/20/98
to

I have noticed that most people involved in this thread are Christians. That I
find interesting, because their own book, the Bible, does not have a single
manusripte--not even one--that has 27 books in its NT until A.D. 800, *eight
hundred* years after they were allegedly written! Since the moderators will
not allow detail on SRI, I can only refer to the following for info:

http://www.infidels.org/library/magazines/tsr/1997/6/976which.html

For further information, see:

The Textual Reliability of the New Testament (1)

http://www.bowness.demon.co.uk/reli1.htm

Part 2 -- The Textual Reliability of the New Testament (2)

http://www.bowness.demon.co.uk/reli2.htm

If Oving, Katz, and Heger would post a response to any of the above on
alt.bible.errancy, I would ask the author, Steven Carr, to continue the
debate. But I don't think Katz, Heger, and Oving would do that. I don't think
any of them would put their money where their mouth is.

Also, an interesting point here is that the Qur'an, unlike the Bible, was also
preserved through memorization. To save time, let me simply quote a Muslim
(with permission), Sabeel Ahmed. (I, by the way, do not necessarily agree
with every thing.)

Sabeel Ahmed:

Memorization

'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)

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 Quran:

'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". (10)

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 instructingtens 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.

Conclusion:

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)

----
1.(1) (Michael Zwettler, The Oral Tradition of Classical Arabic Poetry, p.14.
Ohio State Press: 1978

2.(Transmitted by Ibn Abbas, collected in Sahih Al-Bukhari, 6.519, translated
by Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan)

3.(Transmitted by Abu Hurayrah, collected in Sahih Al-Bukhari, 6.520,
translated by Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan)

4.(Transmitted by Uthman bin Affan, collected in Sahih Bukhari, 6.546,
translated by Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan).

5.(Jalal al-Din Suyuti, 'Al-Itqan fi-ulum al-Quran, Vol. I p.124)

6.(Ibn Hisham: Sira al-nabi, Cairo, n.d., Vol.I, p.206).

7.(Bukhari, 6.106)

8.(Al-Bukhari, 6.201)

9.( Labib as-Said, the Recited Koran, Translated by Bernard Weiss, M.A.Rauf,
and Morroe Berger, The Darwon Press, Princton, New Jersey, 1975, pg.58).

10.((Ibn al Jazari, Kitab al-Nash fi al-Qir'at al-Ashr, (Cairo al-Halabi,
n.d._ vol. 2, p. 254, also Ahmad Makki al-Ansari, al-Difa' An al-Qur'an.
(Cairo, Dar al-Ma'arif, 1973 C.E.), part I, p.120)

11.(Labib as-Said, the Recited Koran, Translated by Bernard Weiss, M.A.Rauf,
and Morroe Berger, The Darwon Press, Princeton, New Jersey, 1975, pg.59)

12.(John Burton, An Introduction to the Hadith, p.27. Edinburgh University
Press: 1994)

13.(Kenneth Cragg, The Mind of the Qur'an, p.26. George Allah & Unwin: 1973)

Jochen Katz

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Jun 20, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/20/98
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In article <6meul6$55n$1...@usenet01.srv.cis.pitt.edu>,
sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp (Dr. M S M Saifullah) writes:

} Now let us briefly examine the so called myth of 42,000 manuscripts of the
} Qur'an from a point of view of Islamic history. This is because I do not
} expect either Dr. Heger or his copy cat friend to get any hard-core
} evidence in the near future concerning the myth issue except repeating it
} like a parrot and standing on it like an obstinate donkey.

So far it was a certain Saifullah who has been parrotting
the 42,000 claim many a time without providing any evidence.

Calling others names can hardly be a substitute for evidence.
At least not in an academic forum. But SRI is not an academic
forum.

The issue whether certain libraries in some other countries
at some time had many books can hardly be relevant to the
question whether the Qur'an archive in Munich had 42,000
manuscripts in 1940. You are talking about 1001 nights
but not about the issue in question. When will you talk
about evidence for the specific claim you made?

Also, it is not just the number, it is that all those
were without variants. All those disappeared Qur'ans
from ancient libraries won't help us the least bit for
the issue whether they had textual variants or not
since they can no longer be examined.

Makes sense, right?

Jochen Katz

oving

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Jun 20, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/20/98
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Adnan wrote:
>
> Since the moderators will not allow detail on SRI,

Great understanding.
So let's return to the issue, an issue what IS moderated by this NG, and
is WITHIN the policy of this NG, namely Quran.

> Also, an interesting point here is that the Qur'an, unlike the Bible, was also
> preserved through memorization.

Ah, so the evidence is 'gone' now?

> Quran is the only book, religious or secular, on the face of this planet that
> has been completely memorized by millions.

Can I test that in my country?
The Muslims are for the greatest part secular, the youth does not know
Arabic, so how am I convinced that this sentence is true?
A quote from a research, confirmed by Muslims and Non-Muslims:

=======================
B]
Existential en religious out of control youngsters who are aware of
their situation.
The majority of this group are students and successful people in
society. They feel being Moslem
- but they do not pray regularly and they do almost not visit a mosque -
but they do not know to give it a more modern try.
They are emancipated boys and (and especially amongst Moroccans) girls,
searching for a way to survive spiritually in a individualised and
secularised society.
That results in the end in a transformed, 'modern' way of experiencing
their religion or in rejecting of Islam.
Their percentage is between 20 and 30 percent.

C}
Too early school-leavers, young unemployed and other unsuccessful people
in society.
They have a social weak position and try to find their way in society by
adaptation.
This group would have become farmer in the homeland.
They call themselves, when asked, still Moslem, but do not practise
Islam.
They never pray, never visit a mosque, smoke, and drink alcohol.
In case of fasting during ramadan, they do it only because they do not
want to become strangers for their
parents and family. The possibility that they leave their religion,
definitely, is great.
50 to 60 percent of the Moslem-youth in our country belongs to this
category.
=====================

So where is your point?
I do not have such a 'perfect' example in our country.

> These memorizers range from ages 6
> and up, both Arabic and non-Arabic speakers, blacks, whites, Orientals, poor
> and wealthy.

Another quote:

============================
Is the number of natives that has joined Islam, maybe the explanation?
Probably not.
We are dealing here with 1500 people, the greatest part are Dutch women
married to a Turk, Moroccan, Surinam, Indonesian or other
Moslem-foreigner.
So there is no mass of people joining Islam at all.
============================

I have no example for a such a mass-memorizing in our country.

But let us return to the issue.

Is your answer on the question:

Preservation, and why we do not have a complete Quran from the time of
Muhammed and/or Uthman?

this:

'Many Quranic memorizers (Qurra) were present during the lifetime of the


Prophet and afterwards through out the then Muslim world.'

So can I conclude that there is no evidence in form of manuscript, but I
have to depend on memorizerz, present and after, and I have to accept
such opinions of men?

If that is the point or from others, would the followers of such not be:

babes, tossed and carried about by every wind of teaching which is in
the sleight of men,
in unprincipled cunning with a view to systematized error.

It is better to follow this principle:
God must be obeyed rather than men.


oving

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Jun 20, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/20/98
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Dr. M S M Saifullah wrote:

> OK smart boy! you were also asked to get the manuscript evidence of
> whatever is there in the OT and NT right from the time of Jesus or Moses
> (p). Where is your evidence?

Interesting question.
But is that the issue?
Is it possible to talk only about that subject in this moderated NG?
Does it give any answers for Quran (a much younger book in history)?

If you were really intelligent, sincere and your opionion was supported
by evidence, you would have answer the question.

Replies like this only raise the doubt.

> Till now there is no evidence.

Is that your answer in case of complete Quran from the time of Muhammed
and/or Uthman?

> Finally, let me enlighten your Holy Ghost (if not you!) on your own books.


> Let me start off with OT

It amazes me everytime how people avoid questions and issues.
It seems that you, by moderating policy, are allowed to lecture me about
NT, OT, whatever book you want to quote to claim that Quran is perfect.

But what remains:
Till now you did not answer the question about preservation.

So why is it that you are allowed to lecture with an issue not within
the moderation of this NG, and when I make a reply it is denied as: 'the
issue has to within the policy of this NG'.?

There are reason, but that is not the issue right now.
It is also not of concern.
So you can say anything, I believe that there is One watching us, He
knows exactly what happened.
You maybe think you can fool and trick some people of this earth, but
you cannot fool Him.

So the 2/3 (or was it 3/4) of this post is really not the issue.

Again I have to ask you: can you answer a question?
(you know about a certain issue)

> And please, so not waste my time with your silly arguments. If you do not
> have any evidence to show for the lack of preservation of the Qur'an, keep
> quite and watch the show.

Please do not run away for important questions.

Please be sincere and answer the question correct instead of starting
-defense-by-attack- project.

And if you mention the word 'evidence', it is your religion, it is the
religion of this NG, Quran is a book of Islam, it can be discussed in
this particular NG about Islam,

so,

show me the evidence.

A normal question.

Show me what preservation means.
Can you show any complete Quran from the time of Muhammed or Uthman, in
our (I say our in case of our common historical possession) possession.?

Regards,

Oving.

PS
Did you read my reply or was it just pick and choose, because you also
did not make clear what the number of manuscript has to do with the
'number' of importance and truth (if that can be expressed with a
number).
That is a question for later times, maybe, if you are willing to answer.

Or do I have to beg you?

Adnan

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Jun 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/22/98
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On 20 Jun 1998 23:05:42 GMT, oving <ov...@wxs.nl> wrote:

>Adnan wrote:

>> Since the moderators will not allow detail on SRI,

>Great understanding.


>So let's return to the issue, an issue what IS moderated by this NG, and
>is WITHIN the policy of this NG, namely Quran.

That is why I asked Katz, Heger, and Oving to post their response on
alt.bible.errancy, but as I predicted, they didn't do it. One thing is
obvious: not many want to defend the Bible on open forums.

>> Quran is the only book, religious or secular, on the face of this planet that
>> has been completely memorized by millions.

>Can I test that in my country?


>The Muslims are for the greatest part secular, the youth does not know
>Arabic, so how am I convinced that this sentence is true?
>A quote from a research, confirmed by Muslims and Non-Muslims:

Oving does not even know that the Qur'an is memorized by millions of Muslims?
Well, in that case, it is a waste of time to continue future discussion. AT
any rate, consider the following:

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

"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 (

>They never pray, never visit a mosque, smoke, and drink alcohol.

>In case of fasting during ramadan, they do it only because they do not
>want to become strangers for their parents and family. The possibility that they
>leave their religion, definitely, is great. 50 to 60 percent of the Moslem-youth
> in our country belongs to this category.

So? Is that uniquely Muslim? How many Christians go to church twice in a life
time?

>So where is your point?
>I do not have such a 'perfect' example in our country.

What this has to do with the fact that millions of Muslims memorize the
Qur'an?

<similar mumbo jumbo snipped>

>So can I conclude that there is no evidence in form of manuscript, but I
>have to depend on memorizerz, present and after, and I have to accept
>such opinions of men?

That should be no problem for you. After all, you accept a book that has no
manuscript before A.D 800 which has 27 books in it's New Testament.

>If that is the point or from others, would the followers of such not be:
>babes, tossed and carried about by every wind of teaching which is in
>the sleight of men, in unprincipled cunning with a view to systematized error.

Exactly. That is why I am not a Christian.


ov...@wxs.nl

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Jun 23, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/23/98
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Adnan wrote:

> > That is why I asked Katz, Heger, and Oving to post their response on
> > alt.bible.errancy, but as I predicted, they didn't do it. One thing is
> > obvious: not many want to defend the Bible on open forums.

Again avoiding the issue.
Which house is burning?
Be honest, stick by and don't avoid the issue.

> > Oving does not even know that the Qur'an is memorized by millions of Muslims?
> > Well, in that case, it is a waste of time to continue future discussion. AT
> > any rate, consider the following:

Etc etc which means there is no complete Quran from the time of Muhammed
or Uthman?
Be honest with me, is that too much to ask or too difficult to answer?



> > So? Is that uniquely Muslim? How many Christians go to church twice in a life
> > time?

Numbers of them, numbers...
But we have the great promise of Matthew 18:20.
Numbers are not important, the condition of heart is important.

According to your answer:

I like to hear the fiddel, one stroke forward, one stroke back.
Great music.
But no benefit.
So what is your point playing the same music over and over?

One can never hide behind an excuse that is based on others supposed
error.
Reality was exposed, don't move the angle to a different direction.



> > >I do not have such a 'perfect' example in our country.
> > What this has to do with the fact that millions of Muslims memorize the
> > Qur'an?

I doubt the memorization of Muslims in our country.
And researchs support me in that, confirmed by Muslim and Non-Muslim
sources in our country.

So if it is doubted in Holland, how do we know for sure that it happens
that 'millonized' in other countries?
Any relevant, recent report with figures to prove such statements, or is
it just depending on an ideal in faith, wishful thinking?

> > That should be no problem for you. After all, you accept a book that has no
> > manuscript before A.D 800 which has 27 books in it's New Testament.

Ai.
You failed your exam.

Study next year for history.



> > Exactly. That is why I am not a Christian.

Therefore you trust on the word of one man, instead of the Word of God?
It is better to trust in Jehovah than to put confidence in man.

I ask you again,
can
you
answer
this
question:

Is there any complete Quran of the time of Muhammed or Uthman, you know
a piece of ancient paper, historical object like old papyrus/parchment?

Off course COMPLETE in case of the so called perfect preservation?

Can you answer this question?
Till now, nobody did.

I give you the honour to be the first.


Dr. M S M Saifullah

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Jun 23, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/23/98
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On 20 Jun 1998, Jochen Katz wrote:

Assalamu-alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

> So far it was a certain Saifullah who has been parrotting


> the 42,000 claim many a time without providing any evidence.

Yes, historically, at least, Katz has not argument to offer because his
own people were involved in such a gory act of destroying large libraries
of the Islamic manuscripts.

Is it also not true that Katz is merely copying the 42,000 myth of
manuscripts without providing evidence? He never told us how did he
reached such a marvellous conclusion!

> Calling others names can hardly be a substitute for evidence.
> At least not in an academic forum. But SRI is not an academic
> forum.

Yes, SRI is neither a mouthpiece for Christian missionary propaganda. And
calling something myth does not solve a myth. May be it is high time we
see some hardcore evidence. Dr. Heger finished his 'interesting'
hypothesis only to realize that it will not wash here. After all Muslims
are growing in wisdom, mashallah.

> The issue whether certain libraries in some other countries
> at some time had many books can hardly be relevant to the
> question whether the Qur'an archive in Munich had 42,000
> manuscripts in 1940. You are talking about 1001 nights
> but not about the issue in question. When will you talk
> about evidence for the specific claim you made?

What I showed historically was simply that there would be more than 42,000
manuscripts of the Qur'an today (remember that we have not yet considered
the 'unpublished Qira'at works' from the goodly collection of Pretzl,
which would again inflate the number!) from the historical point of view
and of course, that is very hard to stomach by a Christian Missionary. To
make a Missionary understand again what we are talking about let me
requote Arthur Jeffery.

"Meanwhile Dr. Pretzl, Bergstrasser's successor at Munich, has begun to
organize the Archive for the Korankomission set up by the Bavarian Academy
at Bergstrasser's initiation, and has already assembled a goodly

**************************************************************

collection of photographs early Kufic Codices and early unpublished

*******************************************************************
Qira'at works."
**************

[Arthur Jeffery, Materials For The History Of The Text Of The Qur'an: The
Old Codices, Op.Cit, p.vii.]

> Also, it is not just the number, it is that all those


> were without variants. All those disappeared Qur'ans
> from ancient libraries won't help us the least bit for
> the issue whether they had textual variants or not
> since they can no longer be examined.

They can not be examined because Katz's own brethen destroyed them and of
course, there would be no hint of remorse in Katz's tone. Afterall,
Missionary activity, arrogance and barbarity play on the same platform.

mar...@vom.com

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Jun 24, 1998, 3:00:00 AM6/24/98
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oving <ov...@wxs.nl> wrote:

>Show me what preservation means.
>Can you show any complete Quran from the time of Muhammed or Uthman, in
>our (I say our in case of our common historical possession) possession.?

It appears that by "complete Quran" Oving means a physical manuscript,
on paper or parchment or palm-leaf or bone, or the like, intact and
complete, and written no later than the time of 'Uthman, RA.

Do we have such a manuscript? There are a few possible candidates, but
there are problems. There is the Tashkent, but there are reasons to
suspect that it is somewhat later in date, and, in any case, it is not
complete. There is the Topkapi, but we know little about it, and one
of the reasons why the Tashkent is suspect, the style of script, would
also apply to the Topkapi. There is the 'Ali ms., but, again, we know
little about it.

But, nevertheless, we have the Qur'an from that time, and we can be
even more certain about it than we would be merely from a single
manuscript ascribed to the time. After all, even a genuine manuscript
would probably be suspected for various reasons.

And I suspect that *every* manuscript contains variations, especially
the early ones. This is intrinsic to the process of writing, unless an
*enormous* effort is expended to remove all variations, something
which was not normally done, and which was probably not done even with
the 'Uthmanic copies. It was simply too expensive and difficult, and
there was no strong motive to do it, since the Qur'an was really
preserved, not in writing, but by the reciters.

And by examining the various recitations which were transmitted orally
and in writing all over the world, we can come to a very good picture
of the original Qur'an. Remember that it is possible that the Prophet
himself, SAS, did not always recite verses identically. It is known
that he allowed recitation in dialect, and I have seen no evidence
that he criticised synoynmous usages; and, in general, the differences
which exist between the various readings are just that: dialectical
variations or synoynmous usages. And where the usages are not
precisely synonymous (that is, one *might* consider them to be
contradictory), they are clues to us that the companions did, in fact,
consider them synonymous, and this is a principle which is used
sometimes in fiqh, in the derivation of law from the Qur'an. For had
they been truly contradictory, the companions would not have allowed
the variations, they would have stood out like a sore thumb.

Remember that the Qur'an was recited in community, a community which
understood the language of the Book intimately. This was not a book
confined to scholars, understood only by an elite, a priesthood. And
this community rapidly dispersed over much of the known world, and
began to disagree about much, even to fight and kill each other. So
what they agree upon is almost certainly from the common origin, the
Qur'an as delivered by the Prophet.

Examining the readings, we see just what level of variation was
considered non-controversial among these people. It is quite small by
the normal standards of manuscript variation. And the vast majority of
variations do not reach to the level of actual letter variation;
mostly they involve pronunciation.

So, yes, we have the Qur'an from the time of its compilation. But
these books were subjected to heavy use, and, even where they were
made of sturdy parchment, they fell apart. One can take a look at the
Tashkent, on gazelle-skin parchment, and see how worn it is. Over the
centuries, a few special copies were preserved, but many of these fell
prey to fires or other hazards. It is possible that we may discover
that one of the existing claimants to being a truly early copy will
prove to be genuine in that respect, but