Monday, February 21, 2011

5:117

Salaam all,



Ma qultu lahum illa ma amartanee bihi ani oAAbudoo Allaha rabbee warabbakum wakuntu AAalayhim shaheedan ma dumtu feehim falamma tawaffaytanee kunta anta alrraqeeba AAalayhim waanta AAala kulli shayin shaheedun

The Aya says:
(Jesus continues) I did not say to them except what you (singular) ordered me with, that worship Allah, my nurturing lord and your (plural) nurturing lord. And I was a witness upon them as long as I stayed amongst them, so when you took me, you were the watcher over them, and you witness upon every entity.

My personal note:
Jesus here reiterates what he actually said and that he never drifted from the message of God and that he asked them to worship Allah who is his lord and their lord. In a sense, Jesus denied that he asked people to take him as divine.

I translated the term TAWAFFAYTANEE as took me. The term carries the meaning of meeting dues and it often carries the meaning of death, however, it does not have to mean that. In this sense, I felt that translating it as took me as most appropriate because it does not have to mean death either in this context.

In a sense, the Aya tells us that the job of the prophet is to make sure that his followers follow the message as clearly as possible and then when he is gone, the watching over the followers is from God and they are supposed to follow the message as honestly as possible without succumbing to the powers of bias and rejection of the message or parts of it.

Translation of the transliterated words:
Ma: not
qultu: I said/ communicated/ I told
Note: QULTU is derived from the root Qaf-W-L and it means saying or communicating in any way possible whether in words or otherwise. QULTU is an action that is completed that is derived from the root. It means the action of saying happened by the subject (first person singular). This, in turn means: I said or I happened to say or communicate.
Lahum: to them
Illa: except/ if not
Ma: what
Amartanee: you (singular) ordered me
Note: The root is Hamza-M-R and it means ordering something and the implementation of it. Sometimes it attains the implementation part or matter as in personal matter and so forth, and at times it is the order and implementation of the order, depending on the situation in the sentence. AMARTA is an action that is completed. It means: the action of ordering the object (NEE= me) happened by the subject (second person singular pointing to Allah).
Bihi: by him/ With him
Note: Bi suggests that what comes after it is either an association with the action, a tool of the action or an object of the action or any combination of the three. If bi serves as an object of the action that it serves as an emphasis of the action. HI means him and it points to what Allah ordered him to do.

Ani: that
oAAbudoo: worship/ make yourselves slaves of
Note: oAABUDOO is derived from the root Ain-B-D and it means slave or servant. This is conceptually extended to acts of worship. A person makes himself/ herself a slave voluntarily either out of love or out of recognition of the importance of the entity he or she enslaved himself to, and that is the essence of worship, enslaving oneself to the beloved who is also the almighty. oAABUDOO is an order or a request addressing a group of people. It means: and worship/ make yourselves slaves of the object (Allah).
Allaha: Allah/ the one worthy of worship

Rabbee: my nurturing Lord
Note: the root is R-B-B and it means nurturing and Lordship as two components of the meaning that can be present together or one at a time according to the context of the sentence. RABBEE is nurturing Lord of mine.

warabbakum: and your nurturing Lord
Note: WA is a letter that links what is before with what is after. This link is through inclusion, either one is included in the other or they are all included in the bigger sentence or bigger picture. WA often corresponds with “and/ addition” but the more encompassing meaning is in inclusion one in another or all in a bigger picture or sentence. RABBAKUM is derived from the root R-B-B and it means nurturing and Lordship as two components of the meaning that can be present together or one at a time according to the context of the sentence. RABBA is nurturing Lord of. KUM means plural you.
Wakuntu: and I was/ I happened to be
Note: WA is a letter that links what is before with what is after. This link is through inclusion, either one is included in the other or they are all included in the bigger sentence or bigger picture. WA often corresponds with “and/ addition” but the more encompassing meaning is in inclusion one in another or all in a bigger picture or sentence. KUNTU is derived from the root K-W-N and it means being. KUNTU is an action that is completed that is derived from the root. It means: the action of being happened by the subject (first person singular). This in turn means: I happened to be/ I was

Aaalayhim: upon them/ over them
Shaheedan: witness
Note: SHAHEED is derived from the root SH-H-D and it means witnessing of truth and it also denotes that the witness knows very well what he or she is witnessing about. The concrete meaning is the honey mixed with wax therefore the wax is the witness of the truth that the honey is the honey. Another concrete meaning is the baby that was just born and is covered with a membrane. In both, there is close association which is proof or witness of the fact. SHAHEEDAN means witness or witnessing.
Ma: what
Dumtu: I lasted
Note: the root is D-W-M and it means in one of it’s concrete meanings, the constant rain that lasts a long period. As a concept it takes the feel of constancy and maintenance of an action and so forth. DUMTU is an action that is completed. It means: the action of maintaining another action (not mentioned but is suggestive of his presence in the land) happened by the subject (first person singular pointing to Jesus.)

Feehim: in them/ Amongst them
Falamma: so when
Tawaffaytanee: took me/ made me meet dues
Note: the root is W-F-Y and it means meeting dues. This then takes different meanings according to the plane of thought of the sentence. One meaning could be death since it is a meeting of dues, or just a taking of someone or something depending on the situation, or other forms of meeting dues. TAWAFFAHUMU is an action that is completed. It means: the action of making the object (NEE= me) meet dues is happening or will be happening by the subject (second person singular pointing to Allah). So, here the meeting of the dues is taking Jesus by Allah.

Kunta: you (singular) were/ you happened to be
Note: KUNTA is derived from the root K-W-N and it means being. KUNTA is an action that is completed that is derived from the root. It means: the action of being happened by the subject (Second person singular). This in turn means: you happened to be/ you were

Anta: you/ yourself
Alrraqeeba: the watcher/ the observer
Note: the root is R-Qaf-B and it means neck for the concrete. The abstract is used to mean surveillance because the neck is an organ of surveillance. It is also used to mean control because the neck is an organ when controlled, the whole body follows. ALRRAQEEB is the one who surveys/ observes and watches over.
Aaalayhim: over them/ on them
Waanta: and you (singular)
AAala: upon/ on
Kulli: every/ each
Note: KULLI is derived from the root K-L-L and it means the parts put together. This is the concrete and it means all or every or each. It can also be extended conceptually to mean the parts surrounding an entity. KULLI means every, or each.

Shayin: entity/ thing
Note: the root is SH-Y-Hamza and it means entity. SHAYIN means entity. It is taken here to mean a thing or entity
Shaheedun: witnessing
Note: SHAHEED is derived from the root SH-H-D and it means witnessing of truth and it also denotes that the witness knows very well what he or she is witnessing about. The concrete meaning is the honey mixed with wax therefore the wax is the witness of the truth that the honey is the honey. Another concrete meaning is the baby that was just born and is covered with a membrane. In both, there is close association which is proof or witness of the fact. SHAHEEDUN means witness or witnessing.


Salaam all and have a great day.

Hussein

2 comments:

Salim Khan said...

No, you mean that you translate the word tawaffaytani to suit your own belief of Jesus going up bodily than what the Quran actually meant; and that is death. This is misleading to many people.

hussein said...

Wa Alaikum Assalam,

I assume that you meant to start with the Salam and so I am returning my assumption. You are certainly free to understand whatever you want. I am merely sharing my understanding according to my study of the term. I also am not saying that Allah took him in body and soul although I keep that option open. It also could be that He kept him in deep sleep as in Aya 39:42.

To elaborate, the term derived from the root W-F-Y is used as I pointed above to mean death but not always. The term was clearly meant to mean death and taking the self without death in Aya 39:42 and therefore I translated it this way. Linguistically, the root W-F-Y means taking dues when they are due as I explained above. So, indeed the context of the sentences in the Qur'an determines whether the word is used to mean death or otherwise and the context here does not narrow the understanding to death or to no death and so both understandings are possible. to me it is wrong to insist that one is correct and the other is wrong. That is why my translation as "took me" opens the door to both understandings without closing the door prematurely to one of the two understandings.

To go further early Muslims had a majority group that believed that Jesus did not die and a minority group that believed that he died upon him be peace. However, the vast majority of both groups agreed that he will come back. For the group that believed that he died they believed that he can come back to life as an exception to the rule just as Allah made a dead man come back to life in Sura Baqarah after having died (and without using the word Tawaffaytani) a hundred years after his death. So, whatever one believes of the above two scenarios will not make it impossible for Jesus to come back on earth.

My blog is not meant to be a forum for unending discussions. I did allow your original statement be published to address this issue that you raised because is also raised by others. However in order to prevent back and forth that can be unending please forgive me for not publishing a response that you may write again not for anything but to avoid an unending discussion that cannot be won by either person and that is not the proper place for a blog.

Take care and Salaam and thanks for your contribution.

Hussein.