WONDER WHY...in AMERICA...

Discussion in 'TurnToIslam Lounge !' started by Karima, Aug 7, 2006.

  1. Karima
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    Karima Junior Member

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    Asalamualikum, Peace of God be upon you.

    Why are there ALWAYS Arabic words thrown into information that is to explain how things are done? How is an English speaking person able to know what is being instructed? Is ARABIC a hidden requirement for becoming muslim?

    Reverting to Islam has a language barrier.....why do most English written articles contain words of a foreign nature?

    Forgive me if I have offended anyone for asking.


    Fajr = First two rakat Sunnat Mokadda then two rakat Fard;

    Zuhr = First four rakat Sunnat Mokadda then four rakat Fard then two rakat sunnat Mokadda; (two rakat nafils at the end are optional)

    Asr =First four rakat sunnat ghair mokadda then Four rakat Fard; (four rakat Sunnate Ghair mokadda befor this is optional)

    Maghrib = First three rakat Fard then two rakat Sunnat Mokadda; (Two nafils after sunnat are optional)

    Isha = First Four rakat Fard then two rakat sunnat mokkada then three rakats Wajib; (four rakat sunnat e ghair mokadda before farz, to nafil before and two after Wajib are optional)
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  2. Beko29
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    Beko29 Im LoViNg It.. ISLAM

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    :salam2: sister.
    i do not read or speak arabic also, but if think is importen that we learn everthing abort Quran and sunnah in the real .language
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  3. Abul Harith
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    Abul Harith Active Member Staff Member

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    Wa alaikom Salam Kristina,

    Arabic is the language of Islam. So therefore all the acts of worship etcetera have Arabic names. It is important that Muslims are taught what is meant by the different terminology ie. Moqqada, Ghair Moqqada, Nafal etc. This is an oversight on the part of some sources on the internet. They ought to explain what these terms mean rather than just exposing Muslims to the Arabic words they don't know the meanings too.
    A lot of born Muslims - both Arab and non-Arab, don't know what these words mean either, so don't despair as you're not alone.

    Many new muslims do not speak a word of Arabic when they take their shahadah. In this case Islam allows for them to pray using simple phrases in Arabic until they learn they learn the full prayers in Arabic. This is also an amazing characteristic of this deen that all Muslims learn to recite their prayers in Arabic. A blessing from Allah and a sign to all mankind of the universal nature of the deen.

    Coming back to the topic, it isn't an imminent requirement that you know all the phrases and terminology of the Shariah. We are only required to know those things that are necessary to complete our daily worship. At the same time we are encouraged to seek knowledge and implement that which we learn. As Arabic is the key to understanding Islam it should be a part of our syllabus. With it we will be able to read the Quraan and understand it, along with the other source of Islamic Law which is the Sunnah of the Prophet :saw:

    It's a learning curve for us all. Some of us are at different points but the path is the same. We all started from the bottom. So we can sympathise with you :)

    This is a beneficial supplication to ask Allah to increase us in knowledge:

    " Rabbi Zidni 'Ilman" - Oh My Lord ! Increase me in knowledge.

    Wasalam,

    mu2min
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  4. Mabsoot
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    Mabsoot Amir Staff Member

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    :salam2:

    I think it depends mostly on who the target readers are :) ..

    Just like if someone is learning to drive, he has to learn what the different signs mean, or perhaps a first year medical student would not know the terminology used by a senior student etc.

    There will be books full of information that born Muslims will not understand. Its about level of knowledge and who people write for.

    I think you are right in that these things need to be explained in a much better way. :)

    Arabic is not a requirement for being a Muslim. Some of the companions of the PRophet :saw: were not Arabs, and they could not speak Arabic properly! For example, Suhaib al Rumi (RA) (he was a Roman).. Salman al Farsi (he was a persian).

    So the answer is simple, that sometimes people write things expecting the reader to know the Arabic words contained. And it could be on any subject, not just religion. For example a guide to internet shopping, it might not even say what the internet was! :)

    However, it is best to try to learn to read and speak ARabic. This is because it is the language of the Quran. And a person can not avoid Arabic as it is an integral part of Islam. Although, you do not have to be fluent in Arabic or even know how to talk, speak or write it. It is good to have grasp of the basic Islamic words.

    Also, a lot of the articles or books may not even use arabic words. Some cultures have developed their own words for various Islamic events and actions. For example, in Turkey, Iran, Bosnia, Pakistan, India etc they use the word "Namaz" for Prayer. In Turkey they call the Muslim festival of Eid .... "Bayram". So these people, might not even know that Salah means prayer, that "Eid" is the Islamic festival. Unfortunately, a lot of the name changing came about in the 19th and 20th century. Especially in Turkey. Ata Turk, The leader was secular and extremely nationalistic, he was opposed to Islam, so he stopped people using the Arabic script and he took away many of the words which were of Arabic origin.

    If we look at Christianity.. the people are broken up and distant. To such an extent that Christians in America and England make jokes and say stupid things about "Allah"... they dont realise that Christians have been using that word for centuries in Arabia. And that "Allah" is a word more close to the original hebrew of the bible "Eloh" than simply "God".

    So this brings me on to the next most important point:

    The Quran is a miracle
    Arabic is the Language that God chose to reveal the Quran. The Qur'an is a miracle that was given to the Prophet Muhammad :saw:. Moses was given the miracle of being able to outdo the magic of anyone of his time, God gave him the ability to outdo the Pharoahs Magicians...this was Moses's miracle.

    Jesus was given Mircales such as healing people. At the time this was his miracle.....

    And the Prophet Muhammad :saw: was given the miracle of the Quran. Its sheer beauty and perfection in prose. For at the time of Muhammad :saw: the Arabs had intense rivalry over poetry. It was common for Kings to have their own Poets. Poetry was central to the society of that time. People studied Arabic language, reading, writing from an early age and continued it through to old age.. There was intense rivalry always learning how to be better poets. Rival leaders would setup Poetry Duels, poets would be pitted against each other to see who could out word their opponent. Kind of like when Rap stars in hiphop music scene "battle" each other. Of course, it was much more eloquent and sophisticated than this modern stuff.

    Poetry was much more valuable than money, weapons etc. For it was central to their culture. On the Ka'bah, the most important place in all Arabia, hung poems of the great poets.

    And the Arabs at that time were extremely proud people. The Arabs were a proud people who wanted to outdo each other in hopitality for guests and give shelter and protection to travellers etc. At the same time they had negative traits, they were Racist, sexist and extremely elitist. Positive Relations between people were all based on nobility and which clan you belonged to.

    So, God revealed the Quran to an unlettered man, "al Ummi" meaning one who can not read or Write, the Prophet Muhammad :saw:. He was a noble man, and was famously called "Al-Amin" the Trustworthy. People would go to him to settle all their disputes.

    He was given the Qur'an and this was one of his miracles. People became Muslim simply by hearing it as they knew no man could have ever written such a book. For the Arabic words in their eloquence, prose and perfection simply take the mind away.

    46. And argue not with the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), unless it be in (a way) that is better (with good words and in good manner, inviting them to Islâmic Monotheism with His Verses), except with such of them as do wrong, and say (to them): "We believe in that which has been revealed to us and revealed to you; our Ilâh (God) and your Ilâh (God) is One (i.e. Allâh), and to Him we have submitted (as Muslims)."


    47. And thus We have sent down the Book (i.e this Qur'an) to you (O Muhammad SAW), and those whom We gave the Scripture [the Taurât (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel) aforetime] believe therein as also do some of these (who are present with you now like 'Abdullâh bin Salâm) and none but the disbelievers reject Our Ayât [(proofs, signs, verses, lessons, etc., and deny Our Oneness of Lordship and Our Oneness of worship and Our Oneness of Our Names and Qualities: i.e. Islâmic Monotheism)].

    Surah 29 al Ankabut:
    48. Neither did you (O Muhammad SAW) read any book before it (this Qur'ân), nor did you write any book (whatsoever) with your right hand. In that case, indeed, the followers of falsehood might have doubted.

    49. Nay, but they, the clear Ayât [i.e the description and the qualities of Prophet Muhammad SAW written like verses in the Taurât (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)] are preserved in the breasts of those who have been given knowledge (from the people of the Scriptures). And none but the Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrongdoers, etc.) deny Our Ayât (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.).

    50. And they say: "Why are not signs sent down to him from his Lord? Say: "The signs are only with Allâh, and I am only a plain warner."

    51. Is it not sufficient for them that We have sent down to you the Book (the Qur'ân) which is recited to them? Verily, herein is mercy and a reminder (or an admonition) for a people who believe
    52. Say (to them O Muhammad SAW): "Sufficient is Allâh for a witness between me and you. He knows what is in the heavens and on earth." And those who believe in Bâtil (all false deities other than Allâh), and disbelieve in Allâh and (in His Oneness), it is they who are the losers.

    The Prophet :saw: taught equality for all, he campaigned for the black ethiopian Slave Bilal, in the early days his companions were all those who were the poor, weak and the oppressed. His example changed the people completely.

    SubhanAllah, if you read the stories of the early days of Islam and how the companions suffered and the patience and kindness of the Prophet :saw: you can see how he was chosen out of all mankind for the message.

    So, without going into too much detail of the early days here, we see the importance of the Arabic language and the Quran, even today Arabic is split:

    3amiyyah - which is spoken at home and with friends. It is not "slang", but the language of the country. Such as in Syria, Lebanon, Saudi, Morocco... each one has their own distinct but recognisable Arabic language. You might not even understand some of the Arabs.. like Moroccans :p (Sorry Adil! hehehe)

    Fus7a - Fus7a is the language of the Quran. Classical Arabic. It is used mostly in books. Modern Arabic used in Newspapers, TV News bulletins, Formal TV Documentaries etc is based on Fus7a.

    Most Arabs with basic education will know both Fus7a and their own language. And even if they do not know Fus7a they will understand it, as the gap between Fus7a and 3amiyyah is very small. I guess it is bit like American English and Queen's English.

    Except of course there is One major difference. That difference is that English and other languages are continually evolving and are not scientific. Arabic is essentially the same as that which was spoken 1400 years ago in Arabia. It has not changed. This was the miracle of the Quran, for God said that the Quran will never ever change. It has not changed, and SubahanAllah, having it not change is not enough, people Also Understand it and still speak the same language almost one and a half thousand years later.

    English has changed a lot, even in one year there are subtle changes, on a longer time basis, such as 50 years there is a difference... and 400 years even more. We do not speak English like Charles Dickens or William Shakespeare anymore. Infact, people require university degrees just to comprehend Shakespearean plays which are relatively new.

    Whereas, Muslim Arabic speaking kids read classical books, such as poetry and vaious Islamic subjects about various subjects, that were written over 1000 years ago. And of course, Muslims learn and read Allah's words, the Qur'an..

    If you study it, you will find that Arabic is a scientific language. It makes sense from a scientific view point. The way sentences are forumlated follow a strict grammar of verbs, nouns etc. You can find out more about the Arabic language
  5. Karima
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    Karima Junior Member

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    Thank you for not jumping on my thread like I was a fool to ask about this. I now have a much clearer reason for all of the Arabic in inserted in English sentences.
    I have been asking for more knowledge about Islam, including the 'miraculous' ability to even speak and read Arabic.
    For me to understand Islam is a miracle in itself, and if Allah wills that I learn Arabic, it will be something that I know I could not do by myself.
    I seek knowledge....
    Thank Allah for your kind explanations and for the positive way you tackled my logical question. Alhamdulillah for another day of learning something I've been questioning since coming to Islam.
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  6. Abul Harith
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    Abul Harith Active Member Staff Member

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    Salam alaikom Kristina,

    May Allah increase your knowledge and understanding of the deen.

    :ma:

    The Prophet :saw: (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Whoever Allah wishes good, He gives him understanding of the deen (religion).” (Reported in Saheeh Al-Bukhari)

    May we all strive to achieve this goodness. Insha'allah. :)

    Wasalam,

    Mu2min
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  7. Mabsoot
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    Mabsoot Amir Staff Member

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    Assalamu alaykum, Learning Arabic is not so difficult, i know of several new Muslims who have at least learnt to read Arabic :). Some of them have only been Muslim for a few months.

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