The sixth word of verse (2:31) is divided into 2 morphological segments. A verb and object pronoun. The perfect verb (فعل ماض) is third person masculine singular. The verb's triliteral root is ʿayn rā ḍād (ع ر ض). The attached object pronoun is third person masculine plural.
The analysis above refers to the 31st
verse of chapter 2 (sūrat
Sahih International: And He taught Adam the names - all of them. Then He showed them to the angels and said, "Inform Me of the names of these, if you are truthful."
20th October, 2014
I added a message last week, but it is nowhere to be found on the site...!!?
25th October, 2014
In ayat 2:31 there are two distinct pronouns that are different from each other yet they have been interpreted to replace the same noun namely "alasmaae".
The ayat says "allama Adama alasmaae kollahaa tomma aradhahom."
The pronouns are:
"Haa" which is correctly interpreted to replace "alasmaae".
"Hom " which to be used correctly, can only be used to replace intelligent beings. All available interpretations and translations out there use "Hom" as a pronoun for "alasmaae" with a total disregard to the fact that "Hom" and "Haaolaae later on in 2:31:12" should be reserved when used as pronouns for intelligent beings, also with a total disregard to the fact that replacing these three pronouns by the same noun "alasmaae", the verses linked to them do not make sense at all; 2:31:1 thru 2:31:15 would read: " And he taught Adam the names all of the names then he displayed the names to the angels then he said inform me of the names of the names if you are truthful"...?!?!?! An absurdity if you ask me.
Because there are no flaws in the text. "Hom and Haaolaae" must be replacing an intelligent being; Adam in this case. Because "Hom and Haaolaae" are reserved for plural, the word Adam must simply be at the same time singular and plural.
In my view, this is the only interpretation of "Hom" and "Haaolaae" that lets verse 2:31 make sense. It would read: And he taught Adam the names all of the names (omnisciense) then he displayed Adam to the angels then he said inform me of the names of these (Haaolaae...pointing to Adam) if you are truthful (that they shed blood and so on..... afterall, they should know their names if they accuse them.).... After the angels had been introduced to Adam for the first time, they realized for the first time that they mistook the word "khaleefa" that means at the same time both successor and vicegerent to only mean the later. So to them the well known entity that already roamed the earth at the time, the one that sheds blood, (al bashar), was going to be blessed with the honor of becoming a vicegerent, and that's what explains their jealous attitude in 2:30:18. Later on After realising the mixup, that these unbeknown to them new beings (Adam) are the ones supposed to succeed to the previous known ones, their natural response was: Glory be to you no knowledge is for us except that which you taught us.
This interpretation, however, raises new questions about our origin and is in my view the most important key concept without which most of the treasures of the revelation would remain hidden.
I understand that this is beyond the scope of the work being tackled by the corpus. I however feel that since the creator of the text saw the necessity of using two distinct pronouns plus "Haaolaae", for your work to be accurate and worthwhile, you have to find a way to make a distinction between the two pronouns in your translation. Only then would a reader of your translation be able to arrive to interpretations only possible with Arabic.
A more accurate translation could be:
He taught Adam all of the names then they were presented to the angels...etc
All of, as a translation for "Haa" ,and they were , for "Hom", instead of "them" as a translation for both.
A suivre if you will...
The pronoun "haa" refers to the "names" -- al-asmaa' -- whereas the pronoun "hum" refers the entities themselves -- intelligent beings according to you. Placed before the angels are the "entities" themselves, and the angels are asked to state their "names". Surely there is a difference here between the names and the things or entities named. The pronouns are therefore referring to two different sets of referents.
"And He taught Adam the names (of the entities) - all of them (the names). Then He showed them (that is, the entities) to the angels and said, "Inform Me of the names of these (entities), if you are truthful."
26th October, 2014
I have never seen a writer use a pronoun in a sentence to replace a not already explicitly disclosed noun....
Let's for arguments sake assume that "hom" is referring to the "intelligent entities" whose names have been taught to Adam. Would the mere fact that the angels did not know the names of these entities make what they have stated earlier about the vicegerent all false?
If Adam is the vicegerent, why would the mere fact of teaching him the names of some intelligent beings render all the horrible things the angels have said about him all wrong.
I think that the creator of the universe is referring here to the great news we have been ignoring as stated in 38.67.
For it to be great news, however, it must bring forth some new information capable of unlocking the treasures within it.
From: Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs
(And He taught Adam all the names), the names of all his progeny, or the names of all the beasts and other things, including: a cooking pot, a plate and saucer, (then showed them) to prove that they were wrong (to the angels) who were commanded to prostrate, (saying: Inform Me of the names of these) created beings and descendents, (if ye are truthful) in your first claim.
From Tafsir al-Jalalayn:
And He taught Adam the names, that is, the names of things named, all of them, by placing knowledge of them into his heart; then He presented them, these names, the majority of which concerned intellectual beings, to the angels and said, to them in reproach, ‘Now tell Me, inform Me, the names of these, things named, if you speak truly’, in your claim that I would not create anything more knowledgeable than you, or that you are more deserving of this vicegerency; the response to the conditional sentence is intimated by what precedes it.
From Tafseer of Ibn Katheer: In his Sahih, Al-Bukhari explained this Ayah in the Book of Tafsir with a report from Anas bin Malik who said that the Messenger of Allah said,
«يَجْتَمِعُ الْمُؤمِنُونَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ فَيَقُولُونَ: لَوِ اسْتَشْفَعْنَا إِلَى رَبِّنَا فَيَأْتُونَ آدَمَ فَيَقُولُونَ: أَنْتَ أَبُو النَّاسِ خَلَقَكَ اللهُ بِيَدِهِ وَأَسْجَدَ لَكَ مَلَائِكَتَهُ وَعَلَّمَكَ أَسْمَاءَ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ،....
[Ibn Katheer said:] The reason why we mentioned this Hadith here is the Prophet's statement,(They will go to Adam and say, `O Adam! You are the father of all mankind, and Allah created you with His Own Hand, ordered the angels to prostrate for you, and taught you the names of everything). This part of the Hadith testifies to the fact that Allah taught Adam the names of all creatures.
This is why Allah said,
﴿ثُمَّ عَرَضَهُمْ عَلَى الْمَلَـئِكَةِ﴾
(Then He showed them to the angels) meaning, the objects or creations. `Abdur-Razzaq narrated that Ma`mar said that Qatadah said, "Allah paraded the objects before the angels,
﴿فَقَالَ أَنبِئُونِى بِأَسْمَآءِ هَـؤُلاَءِ إِن كُنتُمْ صَـدِقِينَ﴾
(And said, "Tell Me the names of these if you are truthful'').''
Allah's statement means, "Tell Me the names of what I paraded before you, O angels who said,
﴿أَتَجْعَلُ فِيهَا مَن يُفْسِدُ فِيهَا وَيَسْفِكُ الدِّمَآءَ﴾
(Will You place therein those who will make mischief therein and shed blood).
You asked, `Are You appointing a Khalifah from us or from other creations We praise and glorify You.
Therefore, Allah said, "If you say the truth, that if I appoint a non-angel Khalifah on the earth, he and his offspring will disobey Me, commit mischief and shed blood, but if I designate you the Khalifahs you will obey Me, follow My command and honor and glorify Me. However, since you do not know the names of the objects I paraded before you, then you have even less knowledge of what will occur on the earth that does not exist yet.''
The point I would like to make here is this: This matter is pretty well settled in the major works of tafseer. A quick reference to any of them will make it clear as to what "haa" and "hom" refer to.
You said: "I have never seen a writer use a pronoun in a sentence to replace a not already explicitly disclosed noun...." Well, now you have seen used in that way in the Book of Allah, glorified be He. And Allah knows best.
Mazhar A. Nurani
Names are of objects and persons. Teaching the names means teaching the names of objects. Those Objects were put to the view of the Angels. Verb is for presenting something to view. Masculine plural pronoun is causing problem perhaps since it is concluded that it refers only to intelligent entities.
The pronouns are Howa; Huma; Hum.
Please see 2:158; it is also used for two mountains; one of which is masculine, other feminine.
Be informed: He the Exalted taught Adam [alai'his'slaam] the Names of things, all of them.
Afterwards, He the Exalted caused those things put at view before the Angels.
Thereupon, He asked them, "Tell Me the names of these things put at your view, if you people were who express the truth-authentic statement" [2:31]
27th October, 2014
Mr Nurani, Can you tell me what was the angel's statement about?
If it is about the worthiness of this being whom God is intending to empower with "alkhilafat", how can then the knowledge of the names of all things, make him worthy all of a sudden, and even then, that would not prove that the angels were untruthful, it would only mean that the angels were right at first and God corrected the problem. But after doing so, the God I believe in would not have made it sound as if the angels were totally wrong to think what they have thought in the first place.
Also, Tafseer aljslaalayn would not hold because the claim was never about who has more knowledge, it was about a straight forward accusation.
Mr. Abdul Rahman,
《《From the Tafseer of Ibn Katheer: In his Sahih, Al-Bukhari explained this Ayah in the Book of Tafsir with a report from Anas bin Malik who said that the Messenger of Allah said,
«يَجْتَمِعُ الْمُؤمِنُونَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ فَيَقُولُونَ: لَوِ اسْتَشْفَعْنَا إِلَى رَبِّنَا فَيَأْتُونَ آدَمَ فَيَقُولُونَ: أَنْتَ أَبُو النَّاسِ خَلَقَكَ اللهُ بِيَدِهِ
وَأَسْجَدَ لَكَ مَلَائِكَتَهُ وَعَلَّمَكَ أَسْمَاءَ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ،....》》
From this we see that The prophet pbuh said أَسْمَاءَ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ، the names of everything not everyone. And even if everyone is included in everything, God has just used "haa" why not just use "haa" again "allama Aadama alasmaaA Kollahaa tomma aradahaa". For the orthodox interpretation to be somewhat correct, God should have said: "allama Aadama asmaaA alashyaae Kallahaa tomma aradahom"
I say somewhat because to refer to "alashyaae" God would have said "aradahaa"
Mr. Abdul Rahmaan, it is because there is no doubt in my mind that the book has no flaws in it, that you see me intervene here. The creator of this book and the universe, has created everything with a measure, nothing is left to chance or is done with approximation. The best Arabic writers are but subjects to this creator, I strongly doubt He would make grammatical errors they don't.
If you say that this matter has been settled in their "tafaseer" by people that have passed more than 700 years ago. My response to you is that, this is exactly the attitude that has kept us from evolving. As Arabs, I am sure we will be held responsible in front of God for not being able to enlighten the world around us. He entrusted us with the last message to humanity sent in our language.
The state of enlightenment humanity is in right now is frightening, may God forgive our ignorance..
28th October, 2014
Mr. Bendriss, I appreciate your comments, but my postings above were made in response to what I perceive to be certain errors in your argument.
You wrote: "In ayat 2:31 there are two distinct pronouns that are different from each other yet they have been interpreted to replace the same noun namely "alasmaae".
I pointed out, that in the tafseers I referred to, these two pronouns are NOT referring to the same noun. "Haa" is referring to "alasmaae" (to use your spelling) whereas "hom" is referring to the entities named (haaulaae). It is these entities that are placed before the angels, entities whose names were taught to Adam but not to the angels. Therefore the angels were made to acknowledge their inferiority to Adam, and hence was asked to prostrate to Adam.
The suggestion made by you, is that "hom" referred to Adam, " the word Adam must simply be at the same time singular and plural" is (and I apologise to be quite blunt about this) simply absurd.
On the point about the Prophet saying أَسْمَاءَ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ، the names of everything not everyone, and so (according to you) the pronoun "hom" could not then be used to refer the "entities that were presented to the angels". Consider this: Adam was taught the names of all things (intelligent beings and non-intelligent beings) but not all the things whose names were taught to him was presented to the angels. Only the "intelligent beings" were presented to them. This is how I would understand the choice of the pronoun "hom"
You wrote: If it is about the worthiness of this being whom God is intending to empower with "alkhilafat", how can then the knowledge of the names of all things, make him worthy all of a sudden, .....
We should read carefully all the relevant verses (Surah al-Baqarah, ayat 30, 31, 32, 34) Are these verses not about "knowledge" and who has superior knowledge? The way I understand these verses, next to Allah the Almighty, Adam has superior knowledge, more knowledge than the angels, and therefore it was wrong for the angels to assert that they are more deserving than Adam to be the "khalifah". And only when Adam's superiority has been demonstrated, then the angels were ordered to prostrate to Adam..
Angels expressed a generalized opinion about the future course of conduct of Human beings once given autonomous status in rhe Earth. An opinion is based on partial information/understanding; it may or may not prove to be true in future.
They were presented other things and were asked to display their knowledge about them and it was in relation to their comment/opinion about Human Being.
Knowledge has nothing to do with exaltation of Human being. Angels were asked to pay obeisance to him when he had not even taken existence. Importance of knowledge is against opinionated expression.
My understanding is that "haaolaae" refers to "hom" and not the other way around. The question is, what is "hom" referring to?. Again, there is precision in everything created by the almighty, for that reason I do not think that He would use a pronoun to refer to a noun hidden behind another noun, requiring tafseer Ibn kateer to be understood. With all due respect, this interpretation is forcing the issue and is what's absurd.
I however, understand where you come from. The concept of a single Adam as source for humanity is what is blurring everybody's analysis. If you would open your mind for a minute, you will notice that a single Adam as the origin of us all, has never been insinuated explicitly in the whole Quran. What you find is that we are all from Adam and Adam is from dust, and I do not dispute that...
Adam is directly from the spirit of God. It is his introduction by way of blowing into the animal like being that already roamed the earth that made the pairing of both, a human being, the successor worthy to be prostrated to by all prior creations.
Notice if you will: "idaa sawwaytoho (the talk is about the vehicle, the animal like being) wa nafakhto feehi mi rouhi (the talk here is about Adam) faqa3ou laho saajideen". The human being was born out of a pairing (tazweej) between the vehicle (physical animal form) and Adam (spirit in form). The end result is for the first time a human being or alinssan. Aanasa Adama bi basharin fa asbaha insaanan.
Also, "oskon anta (Adama) wa zawjoka (lbachar) aljanna" millions were there.
After they proved their unworthiness through their imperfection. THEY WERE commanded (all of them) to get down from a high manzela to a lower one in the objective to raise themselves back up through experience this time. The knowledge they acquired through the teaching proved to require validation through experience. So through alqalam (attaqleem or the universal tool of learning) alinsaan or the human being was going to learn that which he was lacking.
Down here on earth, to refer in Arabic to a married couple (a husband and a wife), we say zawjaan; two couples (each being already one)
Think about that....
29th October, 2014
I agree that, although the command to the angels to prostrate before Adam is described in this part of the Quran after the episode of the names, there may not be a connection between the two at all. So this statement of mine, "And only when Adam's superiority has been demonstrated, then the angels were ordered to prostrate to Adam" may not be true. And Allah taala knows best.
As to the meaning of "haa" and "hom" I have nothing further to add to the discussion beyond what I have written above. It is a literal understanding, guided by reference to well-regarded works of tafseer by our glorious scholars who were acknowledged authorities and experts in the Arabic language.
30th October, 2014
I guess what I am saying is that new knowledge leads to further evolution, and that is mainly why we are here.
1st November, 2014
Simple things are unnecessarily made complex. The conjunct "summa" shows a time gap between the previous and subsequent act and dis-similarity between both. "Kullaha" is used for emphasising that all names were told to him. The second happening is after a lapse of time which shows that the objective was now different; and later it was made mnifest to the Angels.
The reader is aware that names are assigned to objects which comprise objects identified by masculine and feminine gender.
The object pronoun suffixed to the verb obviously refers to the objects presented to their view. And the demonstrative pronoun is drawing their attention to those objects which they are asked to name.
2nd November, 2014
You say "Simple things are unnecessarily made complex". Why then are you choosing to do so?
I accepting non sense
With all due respect, my analytical skills are forbiding me from accepting non sense.
First of all, to get to "your" interpretation, there was a need to add a whole new word to the verse, namely "alashyaae". As if the all mighty couldn't say " Allama Adama asmaaA alashyaae kollaha tomma aradahom". He did not simply because that is not what He means.
Second, lets assume that these "ashyaae" were displayed to the angels, to discredit their earlier statement, and to show that they were wrong to say all that nasty ness about the khalifa. If we now look at this issue retrospectively, isn't it fair to say that the angels were right after all? Aren't most of us, the exact description of what they advanced. And if you agree, didn't the all knower, know this?
You see, this is not a simple thing anymore, is it?
I respect the people who have left us our heritage. Being human like us, they have done all they could. The problem lays with us, we don't seem to think of them as humans, no wonder we cannot question their understanding and interpretation.
Now imagine how evolved we would be today, if the world had stopped thinking and experimenting in the field of electricity after the efforts of Benjamin Franklin in the mid 18th century. We wouldn't be having this discussion for sure.
[Allama Adama asmaaA alashyaae kollaha tomma aradahom]
This sentence was not worth to find mention in Qur'aan. It disturbs even sound effect. After Adama an awkward pause will occur in speech. Arabic and Qur'aan in particular is very succint. Adding of avoidable words compromise the beauty of the text in addition to insulting the reader. The word "kollaha" in the sentence structured by you is redundant.
Another point you are missing is the elision of apodosis clause to the condition clause. The condition sentence has nothing to do with the presentation of things and asking for telling their names. It only relates to their comment wherein they had emphatically given a generalized opinion based upon deficient information.
Typing error: Succinct
10th November, 2014
(وَلَقَدْ خَلَقْنَاكُمْ ثُمَّ صَوَّرْنَاكُمْ ثُمَّ قُلْنَا لِلْمَلَائِكَةِ اسْجُدُوا لِآدَمَ فَسَجَدُوا إِلَّا إِبْلِيسَ لَمْ يَكُنْ مِنَ السَّاجِدِينَ) [Sourate Al-Araf : 11]
And We have certainly created you, [O Mankind], and given you [human] form. Then We said to the angels, "Prostrate to Adam"; so they prostrated, except for Iblees. He was not of those who prostrated.
Here God is Spelling It Out To Us.
The Talk Is about "KOM" in Plural.
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