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In Thy Seed: a book for Jews, Christians, Muslims

November 28, 2007
'In Thy Seed': The Scriptures Revisited: Genesis of the Middle East Imbroglio
‘In Thy Seed’: The Scriptures Revisited: Genesis of the Middle East Imbroglio by Abdul Malik (Paperback – Jul 9, 2007)
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Editorial Reviews
The book is divided into six parts. Part I deals with the origins, composition and structure of the Bible, and Part II discusses some core beliefs. Part III examines some of the key Biblical texts from a new perspective, while Part IV gives essential points about Islam. Part V highlights other relevant issues, with Part VI dealing with the historical background and long relationship between Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The book thus covers a wide canvas, but does not lose sight of its central theme. Biblical quotes are from the King James’ Authorised Version, the oldest English text. Later translations have been avoided as they give edited texts or fresh meanings, which only complicate matters. Quotes appear in the text instead of as Footnotes or Chapter Notes. The Bibliography at the end will assist the reader in undertaking further study.”

About the Author

The author received his early education at missionary schools. He was familiar with many Christian concepts when, under Pope John-Paul II the Vatican called for a dialogue with other religions. As part of this initiative, in 1979-80 the author was invited as a lay Muslim to deliver a series of talks on Islam to some Roman Catholic nuns. This led him to look at the Bible from a Muslim perspective, and his interest grew as he learnt more about the misconceptions and historical factors that have alienated Christians from Islam. The impact of this on world events prompted further study and reflection, the results of which appeared partly as some press articles in 1998. Notes made during the study in more than a quarter of a century have now been updated and are presented in this book.

In Thy Seed looks at the Bible from a completely new angle, and also discusses some related aspects to help clarify the issues. Though the author presents his findings from the point of view of a Muslim, he does it in a spirit of conciliation and to promote understanding.

Developments following 9/11 make such a work both relevant and urgent, and it is hoped that the book will contribute to developing a better relationship among the worlds great monotheistic faiths and bring them closer. Different branches of the same tree, they count around one half of the worlds population as their adherents, and can together bring harmony and peace to a troubled world.

  • Paperback: 380 pages
  • Publisher: BookSurge Publishing (July 9, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0973368799
  • ISBN-13: 978-0973368796
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)

Salafi Dawah in US

February 17, 2007

Salafi Dawah in the US

Recovering from the movement mentality

Israel continues destruction at al Aqsa Mosque

February 7, 2007

Israeli destruction at Al Aqsa Mosque
7 February 2007
Palestine News Network      
Chief Palestinian Justice Sheikh Taysir Tamimi said Wednesday afternoon that Israeli bulldozers have destroyed the historic road leading to the Moroccan Gate, one of the doors to Al Aqsa Mosque.

The Israeli government is continuing a large-scale demolition project of ancient Islam in East Jerusalem’s Old City. Al Aqsa Mosque is under grave danger of destruction in the face of Israeli Judaization of Jerusalem. The Sheikh reaffirmed that Israeli claims at “maintenance” cannot possibly hold up under such rapid destruction that has been ongoing clandestinely for years.

Underneath the Mosque, Israeli excavations have rendered the foundation unstable while the notion that the Western Wall need be expanded at the expense of the Mosque is another falsehood akin to the necessity to put Jewish settlements in the area and build a synagogue. The Israeli government has long since campaigned to overtake the area using different methods.

PNN: “Nonviolent demonstration to save Al Aqsa Mosque area from Israeli destruction”

February 5th, 2007 | Posted in Press clippings, Jerusalem Region

by Maisa Abu Ghazaleh, February 4th

The cold weather and proliferation of military checkpoints in the city of Jerusalem did not prevent hundreds of citizens from reaching Al Aqsa Mosque to stand in the face of Israeli demolition plans. Sunday’s scheme included destruction at the Moroccan Gate to make a Jewish-only road. Israeli forces are adding settlements in East Jerusalem and a synagogue near the entrance to the Mosque.

This morning Israeli police, border guards and special forces were at the doors of Al Aqsa with barricades throughout the Old City stopping Palestinians and checking identification. Only men over 45 years of age and women were allowed to get near the Muslim holy site.

At the Moroccan Gate the Israeli procedures were more prohibitive with all nonviolent demonstrators carrying flags and placards being forced to change course and stand in the rain about three kilometers away at Damascus Gate. Israeli police arrested a 16 year old for attempting to enter the Mosque.

Among demonstrators were Chief Palestinian Justice Sheikh Taysir Tamimi, the head of the Islamic Waqf Sheikh Abdel A Salhab and dozens more clerics, young men and women. During the sit-in several Islamic scholars spoke directly to the threats against the Mosque and the plans to overtake the area.

Sheikh Tamimi said that the destruction at Moroccan Gate made clear the political and religious dimensions of the Israeli plans. “The Israeli government issued an order to demolish ancient buildings in the Arab and Islamic Gate of the Moroccans, exploiting this time of internal strife.”

He demanded that as many people who can make it through the barriers come daily to pray in the Mosque in order to have the maximum presence possible. He also issued an official condemnation against the Israelis today for preventing worshipers from praying.

The Mufti of Jerusalem, Sheikh Mohammad Hussein, described current events as, “ugly crimes against Al Aqsa Mosque and Muslims.” He said that since the 1980s Israeli forces have been trying to implement the scheme at the Moroccan Gate, but that they were always prevented from doing so by world-wide religious and historical outcry. Sheikh Hussein appealed to Arab and Muslim leaders on an international scale to intervene to save the Gate and the Mosque before it is too late.

Chair of the Supreme Islamic Council, Sheikh Ikrima Sabri, said that the scheme to install a bridge and expand the Western Wall is a direct affront to the city’s heritage in its entirety. He has been warning of the bid to overtake the Al Aqsa area throughout the past two years of preparation and less noticeable work.

The head of the Department of Information of the Islamic Movement, Khalid Muhanna, who at the age of 45 was prevented from entering the Mosque, said, “This is to be expected, that we will be kept out of our mosque as we have uncovered the biggest conspiracy yet in the takeover of Jerusalem.”

Muhanna warned against attempts to destroy Al Aqsa, stressing that the Islamic Movement would keep a presence in the city around the clock to stop the takeover.

He called on President Abbas and Prime Minister Haniya to close ranks and serve the Al Aqsa Mosque.


October 17, 2006


By Dr Farrukh Saleem

Al Azhar Mosque was founded on the 14th day of Ramadan the year 359 H or 971 AD (after the name of Sayeda Fatima Al-Zahra). In 975 AD, Chief Justice Abdul Hasan Al-No’man of the Fatimid Caliphate gave his first lecture on Shiite Jurisprudence (the ruling elite of the Fatimid Caliphate belonged to the Ismaili branch of Sh’ism). So began Al Azhar University.

Al Azhar, 1,031 years old, is now the oldest operating university on the face of the planet. Question: How many universities have we built over the past 1,031 years?

In my part of the world, ‘The Great Mughal Empire’ began in 1526 AD and lasted for 181 years. Hamida Banu Begum, Emperor Nasiruddin Humayun’s widow, spent 8 years building Humayun’s tomb. Emperor Jalaluddin Akbar built Fatehpur Sikri, a walled capital encompassing palaces for each of Akbar’s senior queens. Emperor Jehangir built Hiran Minar in memory of his favourite antelope. Emperor Shahbuddin Mohammed Shah Jahan had 22,000 workers spend 23 years building a mausoleum for Arjumand Bano Begum (like his predecessors Shah Jahan’s court included a hundred wives, concubines and dancing girls). Arjumand was Shah Jahan’s favourite wife.

Taj Mahal, in essence, represents two things: First, the Mughal era’s artistic achievement and, second, Mughal Empire’s financial bankruptcy because of indulging in outrageously expensive buildings just when resources were shrinking (by the time Aurangzeb took over the Empire was heavily taxed and financially insolvent).

One hundred and eighty-one long years, not a single university. Did the Americans stop the Mughals from building universities?

Next. The Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC), dedicated “to serving the interests of the world’s 1.4 billion Muslims”, has 57 Member States. Afghanistan, Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Guinea, Indonesia, Iran, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Pakistan, Palestine, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sudan, Somalia, Tunisia, Turkey, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Syria, U.A.E., Sierra Leone, Bangladesh, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Uganda, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Comoros, Iraq, Maldives, Djibouti, Benin, Brunei, Nigeria, Azerbaijan, Albania, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Mozambique, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Suriname, Togo, Guyana and Cote d’Ivoire all put together have less than 600 universities; a university for every 2 million Muslims. Israel has 25 institutes of higher learning for a total of 6.3 million Israelis; a university for every 250,000.

Of the 600 universities how many have produced a Nobel Laureate? Answer: Ahmed Zewail (1999 Nobel Prize in Chemistry) received his first degree from University of Alexandria but his Nobel Prize-winning work was done at the California Institute of Technology. Second, Abdus Salam (1979 Noble Prize in Physics) received his M A from Government College, University of the Punjab, but pursued his scientific work in Italy and the UK.

Of the 600 universities is there one — just one — responsible for a major technological breakthrough? The House of Saud, for instance, has taken in over a trillion US dollars. What have they to show for it? Has any one of their universities produced a medical breakthrough? Have the Israelis kept our universities from producing a major scientific or technological breakthrough?

When we were busy building palaces for Akbar’s senior queens, they were busy granting incorporation to the University of Oxford. When we were busy building for Jehangir’s favourite antelope, they were busy laying the foundation of Puteano College at the University of Pisa. When we were busy building a mausoleum for Shah Jahan’s favourite wife, they were busy establishing Harvard College (Harvard’s faculty has produced over 40 Nobel laureates). By the time we were finished with Mumtaz Mahal’s memory they had put up some four-dozen universities.

Look what we have done to Al Azhar. Government control over syllabus and the politics involved in the appointment of professors is dragging the oldest operating university down the drain.

9/11 can’t turn us into winners. Universities can.

The News International:

Wed 4 Oct 2006?

Translations & Tafseers – II

October 16, 2006

Offline OfflineGender: Male
Posts: 111WWW
Re: Different Translations of the meanings of the Quran.
« Reply #18 on: Today at 08:25:48 PM »

Assalaam AlaikumHere is a link to brief evaluations of the translation of the meanings of the Quran in English. Do visit and have a read. 

I will post that evaluation separately, insha`Allah.Initial translations were word by word, but one of the two early translations (by one of the sons of Shah Waliullah) is a “flowing” (ba-muhawara) one. The Sir Syed and Deputy Nazir Ahmed translations are also flowing type. Deputy Nazir Ahmed’s style of Urdu prose is also like that, but is quite distinct (and does not suit tafseer).One of the reasons for the popularity of the Mawdudi translation is that it is flowing and its idiom is still current.Now to answer jannah’s Qs: Mawdudi’s Tafhimul Quran provides both a translation and a tafseer – most tafaseer do. The way it is normally published is that there is some Arabic text of the Quran; under that is a ba-muhawara translation of the menaings, and under that is explanation or tafseer of what Syed Mawdudi thinks are points that need clarification. I forgot to mention Abul Kalam Azad’s tafseer of Surah Fatiha. It is a masterpiece. Abul Kalam was the heir of a large gaddi (Barelvi-type), but turned away from that towards Ahle Hadith thought.

Among the Deobandi translations and tafaseer are to be counted: Ashraful Bayan (I think) by Ashraf Ali Thanwi, Nure Hidayat (Fateh Muhammad Jallandhri, a disciple of Ashraf Ali Thanwi), and tafseere Uthmaani. The latter is by Shabbir Ahmed Uthmani, who too was a Khalifa of Ashraf Ali Thanwi, and whose tafseer is actually a completion of the work by Mahmudul Hasan). For a while it was printed and distributed officially by the Saudi authorities, I think because they were taken in by the misnomer Wahhabi applied to the Deobandis. There is also tafseere Majidi by Abdul Majid Daryabadi, another Ashraf Ali Thanwi disciple and Khalifa?

Incidentally there is still a living Khalifa (probably the last one) of Ashraf Ali Thanwi. He is old – more than ninety, I believe. I have seen him in Islamabad, but he spends Ramadan in Karachi.

Diaul Quran is by Pir Syed Karam Ali Shah al-Azhari. He had some education at alAzhar University. He died a couple of years or so ago.

There are also translations and tafaseer from South India. I have one volume called tafseere Latifi by “Shamsul Mufassereen Behrul Uloom Khadimul Quran Hadrat Allama Muhammad Abdul Qadeer Siddiqui Qadri Hasrat Hyderabadi“. What a mouthful of alqaab.

Unfortunately we Muslims have become famous for such alqaab. The Hadrat has authored tafseere Siddiqui of the Quran. This tafseere Latifi is for a few Surahs in the last juzz, and appears to be for women, using the construction for females.

There have been efforts to bring the message and the language of the Quran to larger and larger number of people. Hafiz Nazir Ahmed separately and also together with a board, has produced non-sectarian word as well as flowing translations. This has become one of the most non-sectarian translations ever. Darse Quran in seven volumes – one page a day dars, very nice and easy, published by Idarae Islah and Tabligh, Lahore). I recommend it highly. Try to read a little of the Quran its meanings and a little explanation every day (one page) with the family.

There are Easy Quran books (lughaat) by  Abdul Karim Parekh (see for a download in many languages). I have downloaded and printed and bought the lugaat, and what a work the honorable scholar has produced.Quran Asan Tehrik ( was the first I believe to use two colors (red and blue) to alternatively distinguish phrases and their meanings, and uses phrase translations, based on accepted modern translations. I found it useful when I memorised Surah Yaseen with meanings. It is good and based on accepted translations, but still has that occassional bit of words not respecful enough that leave people dissatisfied. For those familiar with Urdu, I would advise going there and joining up for an email of the 2-color coded translation – one page a day. Set up a separate or account for the emails. The latter has more space: 2 GB, and you can attach larger files with it. Eventually it will become your online Asan Quran. You can save the pages, too. For a gmail account, if anyone needs it, I believe I still have some offers left for joining. Let me know if you need a gmail account.Then there is quranclub ( It uses three colors – one for alamaat, one for words with some commonality in Arabic and Urdu, and the third color shows words exclusive to Arabic.This is based on a color code scheme and the Nazir Ahmed word-by-word method. I strongly endorse visiting this site and looking at their efforts. To benefit one will have to download or buy some of their books. They have so far worked up to five juzz. And I think it is wonderful work. It makes Arabic Grammar easy for Urdu-ites.


Ramadan Witness
Madina Siddique
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Posts: 111WWW
English Translation of the Meanings of the Quran
« Reply #19 on: Today at 08:44:05 PM »

Assalaam Alaikum well, what do you know, the article I am reproducing here is originally and probably from Bhaloo’s cool site: Arshad’s Cool Site, although I found it elsewhere:

Bismillah arRahman arRahim
Anti Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam
October 2000
Ahmadiyya and the Holy Quran
distorting translations to support their claims

We present to our readers a reproduction of an article evaluating the English translations of the Holy Quran. Of particular interest is the section about Ahmadiyya/Qadiani translations . This section explains how Ahmadiyya even distorts the translation of the Holy Quran to support the Ahmadiyya claims.



An Annotated Bibliography
by A.R. Kidwai

Before the fairly recent publication of the massive World Bibliography of The Translations of The Meanings of The Holy Qur’an (Istanbul, OIC Research Center, 1986), it was hard to even track down the material on the translations of the Holy Qur’an in various languages. Nonetheless, since the Bibliography is not annotated, the reader gets no idea about the translations make-up, his dogmatic presuppositions and his approach to the Qur’an, as well as the quality of the translation. The present annotated bibliography, taking into account only complete English translations to date, attempts to answer some of the above questions. In preparing the bibliography I received all possible help from the Islamic Foundation, Leicester (UK), which is thankfully acknowledged.

By Muslims 1905-59
By Muslims 1960-86
By Non-Muslims, Qadiyanis, 1917-70
By Other Non-Muslims, 1649-1956
BY MUSLIMS, 1905-59


Khan, Mohammad Abul Hakim, The Holy Qur’an, (Patiala, 1905), 2 edns. Subtitle: ‘With short notes based on the Holy Qur’an or the authentic traditions of the Prophet (pbuh), or/and New Testaments or scientific truth. All fictitious romance, questionable history, and disputed theories have been carefully avoided. A physician by profession, Abul Hakim Khan was not thoroughly versed in Islam. Initially he had Qadyani leanings which he later recanted. His translation is more of a rejoinder to the anti-Islam missionary propaganda rife in the day than a piece of sound Qur’anic scholarship. Contains scant notes. His translation is badly marred by literalism. 1912
Dehlawi, Mirza Hairat (ed.), The Koran: Prepared by Various Oriental Learned Scholars and Edited by Mirza Hairat (Delhi, 1912). 2 edns. Though intended as ‘a complete and exhaustive reply to the manifold criticisms of the Koran by various Christian authors such as Drs. Sale, Rodwell, Palmer and Sir W. Muir’, it contains little material to justify this claim. Verses numbered part-wise instead of Sura-wise. The language used in the translation is quite weak.

Abu’l Fadl, Mirza, The Qur’an Translated into English from the Original Arabic (Allahabad, 1912). 3 edns. Dedicated to Sultan Jahan Begum, [Lady] ruler of Bhopal [India]. References to the Bible with a view to bringing out the superiority of the Qur’an. Refutation of the missionary views in a casual manner. Includes few notes.

Pickthall, Muhammad Marmaduke William, The Meaning of the Glorious Qur’an (London, 1930). At least 27 edns. One of the most widely used translations done by an English man of letters who accepted Islam. Faithfully represents the sense of the original. His use of the Biblical English, however, tends to be a stumbling block for an average reader. Too brief notes on the circumstantial setting of the Suras and the Qur’anic allusions hence not very helpful for an uninitiated reader of the Qur’an.

Ali, Abdullah Yusuf, The Holy Qur’an: Translation and Commentary (Lahore, 1934-37). At least 35 edns. Another extremely popular translation. Written in style and couched in chaste English, it stands out above other translations as a highly readable rendering of the Qur’an into English. Copious notes are reflective of Yusuf Ali’s vast learning. Nonetheless, some of his notes, particularly, on the Qur’anic eschatology and angelology smack of apologia and pseudo-rationalism. Sufistic bias is also quite marked in his notes. (For a detailed discussion on Yusuf Ali’s unorthodox views, please see Kidwai, A.R., ‘Abdullah Yusuf Ali’s Views on the Qur’anic Eschatology’, Muslim World League Journal 12 (5) February 1985, pp. 14-17).

Daryabadi, Abdul Majid, The Holy Qur’an with English Translation and Commentary (Lahore, 1941-57). At least 4 edns. A faithful, though largely unacknowledged, translation.

by Muslims, 1960-86

Jullundri, Ali Ahmad Khan, Translation of the Glorious Holy Qur’an with Commentary (Lahore, 1962). 3 edns. The translator boastfully entitles his work as ‘After few centuries a True and Easy translation of the Glorious Holy Qur’an’. Marred by numerous mistakes of translation. Appended to the translation is a lengthy appendix dealing with diverse topics in a bizarre way, heaps abuses in the Saudi rulers and slights the role of Sunna. A simply unreadable work.

Ali, S.V. Ahmad, The Holy Qur’an with English Translation and Commentary according to the version of the Holy Ahlul Bait. With special notes from Ayatullah Agha Haji Mirza Mahdi Pooya Yazdi (Karachi, 1964). 3 edns. Vindicates on the authority of the Qur’an itself such sectarian doctrines of Shias as Imamat, Muta’a (temporary marriage), the nomination of Ali as the Prophet’s successor, Taqqiyya (hiding the faith), Tabarra (cursing), and mourning in the month of Muharram. Invectives used against both the Umayyad and Abbasid rulers. Strongly refutes the view that the Shias believe in the alteration (Tahreef) of the Qur’an.

Tariq, Abdur Rahman and Gilani, Ziauddin, The Holy Qur’an: Rendered into English (Lahore, 1966). l edn. An explanatory translation supplemented by brief notes, without the Arabic text. Though this translation is in consonance with the orthodox Muslim viewpoint, its language and presentation leave a lot to be desired.

Latif, Syed Abdul, al-Qur’an: Rendered into English (Hyderabad, 1969). 1 edn. Apart from the translation of the Qur’an, Syed Abdul Latif also rendered Abul Kalam Azad’s incomplete Urdu tafsir The Tarjuman al-Allah into English. Devoid of notes and the text, this translation does not advance much one’s understanding of the Qur’an. At best, it represents the author’s pious enthusiasm to undertake a noble enterprise.

Ali, Hashim Amir, The Message of the Qur’an Presented in Perspective (Tokyo, 1974). 1 edn. In his zeal to bring out the thematic unity of the Qur’an, the translator has devised a new Sura order, re-arranging the Suras under the following five sections which he calls as the five ‘books’ of the Qur’an: Book I – The Portal, al-Fatihah; Book II – The Enlightenment, ar-Ruh, 18 earliest Meccan Suras; Book III – The Guidance, al-Huda, 36 early Meccan Suras; Book IV -The Book, al-Kitab, 36 late Meccan Suras; and Book V – The Balance, al-Mizan, 24 Medinite Suras. Going a step further, he has made up 600 sections of the Text, in place of the standard 558 sections, for, what he calls, perspective purposes. In making a mess of the Sura and ruku order of the Qur’an, it does not occur to Hashim Amir Ali that the thematic unity of the Qur’an has been quite remarkably demonstrated by some exegetes without disturbing the traditional arrangements of the Qur’an. The level of translation is, however, fairly good.

al-Hilali, Taquiuddin and Khan, Muhammad Muhsin, Explanatory English Translation of the Meaning of the Holy Qur’an (Chicago, 1977). 2 edns. It is, in fact, a summarized English version of Ibn Kathir’s exegesis, supplemented by al-Tabri’s, with comments from Sahih al-Bukhari. Both the translators have been introduced as Salafi (traditional followers of the way of the prophet). The translation is intended to ‘present the meanings of the Qur’an which the early Muslims had known’.

Ahmad, Muhammad Mofassir, The Koran: The First Tafsir in English (London, 1979). 1 edn. Explanatory notes have been interpolated into the translated text. It marks a serious deviation from the norms of the Qur’anic exegesis in that it would open the floodgate for presenting any material as the translation of the Text itself. Grossly misinterprets several Qur’anic terms. For example, al-Ghayb (the Unseen) is rendered as the ‘consequence of one’s action’.

Muhammad Asad, The Message of The Qur’an (Gibraltar, 1980). l edn. Translated in chaste, idiomatic English by a convert from Judaism to Islam. However, it contains some serious departures from the orthodox viewpoint on a number of Qur’anic statements. Asad appears to be reluctant to accept the literal meaning of some Qur’anic verses. For example, he doubts the throwing of Ibrahim into fire, Jesus speaking in the cradle; refers to Khidr and Dhulqarnain as mythical figures and expresses unconventional views on abrogation (Naskh) theory. (For details please see Arfaque Malik’s review in the Muslim World Book Review, Vol. 1, No. 1 (1980), pp. 5-7

Zayid, Mahmud Y. (checked and revised) in collaboration with a committee of Muslim scholars, The Qur’an: An English Translation of the Meaning of the Qur’an (Beirut, 1980). Based mainly on a Jew, N.J. Daud’s English translation of the Qur’an hence repeats the mistakes of mistranslation that mar Daud’s translations. In the supplement on Muslim religious practices and law both the Sunni and Shia doctrines have been presented.

Sarwar, Sheikh Muhammad, The Holy Qur’an: Arabic Text and English Translation (Elmhurst, 1981). l edn. Without any notes this explanatory translation paraphrases the contents of the Qur’an in a lucid style.

Shakir, M.M., Holy Qur’an (New York 1982). An example of blatant plagiarism in that about 90% of this English translation has been verbatim copied from Muhammad Ali Lahori’s English translation of the Qur’an. Though it does not contain any notes, the Shia doctrines have been indicated in the Subject index of the Qur’an with pointed reference to the Qur’anic verses in order to give the impression that such Shia doctrines as Imamat, Ali as the chosen one, martyrdom of Hussain, khums, Masoom (the infallible ones) and Vali occur in the Qur’an itself.

Ali Ahmad, al-Qur’an: A Contemporary Translation (Karachi, 1984), 2 edns. Devoid of explanatory notes or background information about Suras, this translation rendered in fluent idiomatic English is vitiated by several instances of mistranslation. Contains unorthodox, apologetic and pseudo-rationalistic views on the hell, stoning of Abraha’s army, the Tree, the Verses II:73, 248 and 282, III:49 and IV:01.

Irving, T.B., The Qur’an: the First American Version (Vermont, 1985). 1 edn. Apart from the obnoxious title this translation is not al-together free from mistakes of translation and loose expressions, such as in al-Baqarah II:37 and 157. Assigns theme(s) to each Qur’anic ruku (section). Contains neither the Text nor explanatory notes. Uses American English expressions.

Khatib, M.M., The bounteous Koran: A Translation of Meaning and Commentary (London, 1986). 1 edn. An authentic and faithful translation of the Qur’an in readable, fluent English. Free from irksome use of archaic Biblical English as in Pickthall, Yusuf Ali and Daryabadi. Contains a historically based ‘Introduction’ discussing Islam, the Qur’an and Sirah, and brief yet insightful notes on the circumstantial setting and the meaning of certain Qura’nic allusions and expressions. Suffers from a few inaccuracies in translation. For example al-Furqan XXV:16, 29, 46 and 62, al-Maidah V:67 and Maryam X1X:26 and 34, etc. (For details see A.R. Kidwai’s review on it in Muslim World Book Review (Spring 1988), Vol. 8, No.3, pp. 11-13.

Those who wish to understand the specific and broader meaning of the verses of the Qur’an, it is recommended that they should also read commentary on the subjects and verses of the Qur’an. The English readers will find either Yusuf Ali’s or Maududi’s commentaries a good source. Allama Yususf Ali presents the meaning Ayah (verse) by Ayah with detailed footnotes for relevant words in each verse and includes a detailed index of the topics mentioned in the Qur’an. Maulana Maududi’s work covers commentary for each Surah (chapter) of the Holy Qur’an.

Pickthall writes in his foreward of 1930: “… The Qur’an cannot be translated. …The book is here rendered almost literally and every effort has been made to choose befitting language. But the result is not the Glorious Qur’an, that inimitable symphony, the very sounds of which move men to tears and ecstasy. It is only an attempt to present the meaning of the Qur’an-and peradventure something of the charm in English. It can never take the place of the Qur’an in Arabic, nor is it meant to do so…”

“The Holy Qur’an,” Text, Translation and Commentary by Abdullah Yusuf Ali, 1934. (Latest Publisher: Amana Publications, Beltsville, MD, USA; Title: “The Meaning of the Holy Qur’an,” 1992). A pocket edition of Yusuf Ali’s translation is also available in contemporary English.

“The Meaning of the Glorious Koran,” An Explanatory Translation by Mohammed Marmaduke Pickthall, a Mentor Book Publication. (Also available as: “The Meaning of the Glorious Koran,” by Marmaduke Pickthall, Dorset Press, N.Y. and several Islamic book publishers; Published by several publishers since 1930). Note: The Mentor publication (451 MJ1529 195) contains a few errors/omissions, e.g., in Surah 72: the last part of Verse 2 should read “we ascribe no partner unto our Lord”, and Surah 68: Verse 22 should read “straight” road instead of “beaten” road. In case of any doubt, the reader is advised to check with a copy from an Islamic publisher and also check with an Islamic scholar for the meaning directly from the Arabic original.


Article reproduced courtesy to Arshad’s Cool Site (


Ramadan Witness
Madina Siddique
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Posts: 111WWW
Translations by non-Muslims
« Reply #20 on: Today at 08:46:04 PM »

Assalaam AlaikumI think the following by non-Muslims should also be included, so that if one comes across these, one is forewarned that there is an inherent defect.BY Non-Muslims, Qadiyanis, 1917-1970
Ali, Muhammad, The Holy Qur’an: English Translation (Lahore 1917). At least 10 edns. The translation supplemented by exhaustive notes betrays the translator’s Qadiyani beliefs. Grossly twists and misinterprets the Qur’anic verses related to the Promised Messiah and the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) as the seal of prophethood. Swayed by pseudo-rationalism, Muhammad Ali denies the occurrence of some miracles such as the gushing forth of twelve springs as a result of the Prophet Moses’ striking his staff (al-Baqarah II:60), angelhood of Harut and Marut (al-Baqarah II:102), Jinns listening to the Qur’an (al-Jinn LXXII:01) and the stoning of Abraha’s army to death by the birds (al-Fil CV:3). The language used in his translation is not also up to the mark.
Sarwar, Ghulam, Translations of the Holy Qur’an (Singapore, 1920). 8 edns. The introduction constitutes a brilliant critique of the English translations of the Qur’an by Sale, Rodwell, Palmer and Muhammad Ali. Devoid of the Text and notes. Lavishes a gushing eulogy on both the translation and approach of Muhammad Ali. The only defect Sarwar discovers in Muhammad Ali’s translation is the ‘very poor construction of a great many passages in the body of the translation’ hence his new translation.
Ali, Sher, The Holy Qur’an (Lahore, 1955). 13 edns. The official Qadyani translation of the Qur’an. Apart from retaining the unpardonable faults of misinterpretation and mistranslation found in Muhammad Ali’s translation, Sher Ali interpolated more blatantly the Qadyani doctrines into his translation.
Peer, Salahuddin, The Wonderful Koran (Aminabad, 1960). 2 edns. Another Qadyani translation of the Qur’an.

Nuri, Khadim Rahman, The Running Commentary of the Holy Qur’anwith under- bracket comments (Shillong 1964) 1 edn. Sufistic leanings of the translator characterize this Qadyani translation of the Qur’an.

Farid, Malik Gulam (ed.), The Holy Qur’an: English Translation and Commentary (Rabwah, 1969). 2 edns. The commentary is based on Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmad’s Urdu Translation of the Qur’an. Published under the auspices of Hadrat Mirza Nasir Ahmad, Third Successor of the Promised Messiah and Head of the Ahmadiyyah Movement in Islam’.

Khan, Zafrullah, The Qur’an: Arabic Text and English Translation (London, 1970). 4 edns. A notable Qadyani translation. Marred by unaccountable liberties in that Zafrullah Khan, following the footsteps of other Qadyanis, does not recognize the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) as the last Prophet.    

by other non-Muslims, 1649-1956

Ross, Alexander, The Alcoran of Mahomet translated out of Arabique into French, by the Sieur Du Ryer…And newly Englished, for the satisfaction of all that desire to look into the Turkish vanities (London, 1649). 8 edns. The latest edition came out in 1856. A very crude specimen of the Orientalist-missionary approach to the Qur’an. In his ‘Introductory Note to the Christian Reader’ Ross specifies his purpose: ‘I thought good to bring it to their colours, that so viewing thine enemies in their full body thou must the better prepare to encounter…his Alcoran’. In the same rabidly anti-Islamic vein is the Appendix to the work entitled as ‘A needful caveat or Admonition, for them who desire to know what use may be made of or if there be danger in reading the al-Coran’. As to the quality of the translation itself, Zwemer’s remark is quite illuminating: ‘He (Ross) was utterly unacquainted with Arabic, and not a thorough French scholar; therefore his translation is faulty in the extreme’. Zwemer, S.M., Muslim World, V, (1915), p.250.
Sale, G., The Koran: Commonly called the Alkoran of Mohammed (London, 1734). At least 123 edns. The latest edition appeared in 1975. Contains an exhaustive Preliminary discourse on Sira and the Qur’an. In translating the Qur’an Sale’s missionary intent is quite marked. For in the note to the reader he suggests the rules to be observed for ‘the conversion of Mohammedans’ (p. v); evaluates the Prophet thus: ‘For how criminal soever Mohammed may have been in imposing a fake religion on mankind, the praises due to his real virtues ought not to be denied him’ (p. vii), talks of different editions of the Qur’an which, for him, vary in contents (p. 45), points out the borrowings in the Qur’an, (pp. 49 and 50) and refers to the piecemeal revelation of the Qur’an as a ‘contrivance’ (p.50). Full of instances of omission and mistranslation. For example, Ar-Rahman nir Raheem, is simply rendered as ‘Most Merciful’. The recurrent Qur’anic address, Ya aayuhan nas is translated as ‘O people of Mecca’. Renders as ‘Substitute’ and as ‘Secret History’. Parts of some verses have been altogether omitted, as for example, in Ale-Imran III:98 is not translated.
Rodwell, J.M., The Koran (London, 1861). 32 edns. Question the authenticity of the traditional Sura order and invents a new so called chronological Sura order. In the Introduction he refers to the prophet as the crafty author of the Qur’an; indicates the Christian, Jewish, Zoroastrian and other sources of the Qur’an; advises missionary activists how to carry out their work and hold the prophet a victim of self-deception, a cataleptic subject from his early youth…liable to morbid and fantastic hallucinations (p.14). Suffers from a number of mistakes of mistranslation and misinterpretation. For example, (al-Mudathir LXXIV:39) is translated as ‘they of God’s right hand’, (al-Kauthar CVIII:2) as ‘Pray therefore to the Lord and slay the victims’. Explains the use of the word abd (al-Alaq XCVI:10) in the Qur’an thus: ‘Since it was the slaves who had embraced Islam, the Qur’an uses this expression’.
Palmer, E.H., The Koran (London 1880). 15 edns. A Cambridge scholar entrusted with the preparation of a new translation of the Qur’an for Max Muller ‘Sacred Books of the East Series’. Nykl notes no less than 70 instances of omissions and mistranslation in his translation. Nykl, A.R., ‘Notes on E.M. Palmer’s The Qur’an in the Journal of the American Oriental Society 56 (1936), pp. 77-84.

Bell, Richard, The Qur’an translated with a crucial rearrangement of Surahs (London 1937). 4 edns. His aim in translating the Qur’an is to ‘understand the deliverances of Muhammad afresh’ (p. v). Apart from describing the Prophet as the author of the Qur’an, Bell believes that the Qur’an in its written form was ‘actually written by Muhammad himself’ (p vi). Illustrates ‘alteration, substitutions and derangements in the text’. For example, II:209 is a later addition, 206-208 are unconnected scraps and 210 is the original continuation of the verse No. 205. On each page he indicates his peculiar arrangement of verses.

Arberry, A.J., The Koran Interpreted (London, 1955). 12 edns. Contains no explanatory notes or background information about Suras. Not altogether free from omissions and mistranslations. For example al-Anfal VIII:59 is rendered as: ‘And thou are not supposed that they who disbelieve have outstripped Me’ whereas the correct translation would be: ‘Let not those who disbelieve deem that they have escaped Me’. An-nabi-ul Ummi is mistranslated as ‘the Prophet of the common folk’. Other instances of mistranslation are: Ale-Imran III:43; Nisaa IV:72, 147 and 157; Maida V:55; Araf VII:157; al-Sajdah XXXII:23; al-Anfal VIII:59 and Yunus X:88, etc.

Dawood, N.J., The Koran (London, 1956). 11 edns. An Iraqi Jew. Speaks of the influence of Jewish and Christian teachings on the Prophet and condemning the traditional Sura order follows the chronological Sura order. Marred by serious mistakes of translation ‘bani Adam” (al-Araf VII:31) is rendered as children of Allah [correct translation is ‘children of Adam’], in Al-Baqarah II:191 ‘al fitnatu asyaddu minal qatl(i)’ is mistranslated as ‘idolatry is worse than carnage’ [correct translation is ‘oppression is worse than slaughter’].