For, this is a book that not only impacts the lives of more than a billion Muslims directly and the lives of the rest of humanity indirectly, but also holds in its divine pages the key to peace and justice throughout the world.
For, this is a book that not only shaped world events over the past 1400 years, but is also at the heart of a great deal of what is going on around the world right now – either because some people falsely claim to follow it or because many other people arrogantly disregard some of its most central and most human and civilized teachings.
For, this is a book that some people falsely and maliciously accuse of fanning the flames of hate and conflict, whereas in truth it is the book that has shown the people of the world for the past 14 centuries how to live in peace and harmony with one another.
That is why decent and civilized people everywhere cannot but love this book. And that is also why those who fear and hate truth, those who oppose fairness and justice, and those whose hearts are filled with prejudice, hate, lust, greed, evil, injustice and cruelty, find it necessary to be wary and fearful of this book.
Islam, Muslims and the Qur’an
This book is the reason everyone everywhere is saying things like “Islam is this,” “Islam is that” and “Islam is something else.”
And things like “Muslims are doing this,” “Muslims are doing that” and “Muslims are doing something else.”
When people say these things about Islam and Muslims, they are basically talking about that book: the Qur’an. For, that is where Muslims get much of their Islam from. They get it from the Qur’an.
At least they should. Otherwise it is not Islam.
So, let us talk a bit more about that book – the Qur’an. Let us take another peek at what the Qur’an is. And at what it is not. At what it does, and what it does not.
That the Qur’an is a book is beyond question. Because that is what the Qur’an calls itself: a book. It also refers to itself as “The Book.” And as “That Book.”
Centuries before the world in general woke up to the joy and power of reading, this book gave itself the name of “The Qur’an,” which in the Arabic language means “something to read,” or “that which is read” or simply “Reading!”
This is not its admirers and followers calling it, but the Qur’an itself referring to itself by these names. A most remarkable thing in itself.
An Illiterate Man Produces a Book? How Probable Is That?
And then add to this the fact that this book was given to us by a man who could not himself read or write, this book becomes all the more remarkable and intriguing.
It becomes a miracle.
For, how can an illiterate man produce a written compendium that he then proceeds to call The Book and The Reading? In other words, how can fire come out of water? And how can Not-A produce A?
So, that is what the Qur’an is: a miracle from God Almighty that God sent at the hands of an illiterate man to educate, teach, help and guide all of humanity. It belongs to anyone who would read it, reflect on it, believe in it, embrace it and claim it as his or her own.
Not a Book of, for and by Muslims
That means the Qur’an is not a book of the Muslims, for the Muslims and by the Muslims. But rather a book directly from God Almighty to all of his creation!
Nor is the Qur’an the work of Prophet Muhammad, may God’s blessings be upon him and upon all the prophets of God such as Moses, Jesus, David, Solomon, Jacob, Abraham and others.
But rather, the Qur’an is the book of God Almighty to all of his creation.
That is the first misunderstanding that must be cleared about the Qur’an: that it is a Muslim book or a human creation.
And it is an important distinction that people need to keep in mind – Muslims as well as non-Muslims: the Qur’an is God’s book for all creation.
And let us not forget that it is not a question of who makes what kind of assertions and statements about the Qur’an, but what the Qur’an itself says about itself. The Qur’an makes this point over and over again that it is directly from God.
And that it is guidance, light and blessing for all of humanity. And that it is a cure for all that ails the human heart.
In short, the Qur’an is the book of life from the maker of life on how human beings should spend their life on their earthly abode that God Almighty created for them.
Content of the Qur’an
Qur’an is about God and his creation and about God’s ways with his creation.
It is about the beginning and end of human life in this world and about its continuation in the next world. It is about what human beings need to know and do to live a rich, happy and meaningful life on earth; to continue their bliss, joy and felicity in the hereafter; and to earn and merit the pleasure, blessing and grace of their maker and master in both worlds.
Not in all the minute little details and specifics. But in big, broad principles.
Thus the overall content of the Qur’an is God and his creation. And it is about any and everything else, if you can think of anything else other than God and his creation, which naturally you cannot.
Qur’an is the natural heir to all other divine books that God sent down through the prophets to all other nations, tribes, cultures and peoples in all other times and places – May God Almighty bless all his prophets and messengers. Thus, believing in the Qur’an means, and requires, believing equally in all the other books of God that were ever revealed and sent down in this world.