Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was illiterate. He never knew how to read or write and never went to school – in fact there was no school in his town at that time. The country he was born in had not known much of civilization or progress. How, then, could such a person produce a work like the Holy Qur’an? He came to Islam from a village surrounded by dark mountains and the wilderness of the desert – a remote place, unheard of at that time. No one in that village had any knowledge of the philosophy of Greece and Rome, nor of the literature of India and Iran. It was a village, devoid of any academic tradition and activity. There was no one even with a minimum level of education and knowledge. And our Prophet did not travel from his village, except to go to Busra in Syria, another village, slightly bigger than his own, where he only stayed for a few days. So, how could someone, with such a background produce a work like the Holy Qur’an?
Biographies have been written about men of genius, and the history of nations in different periods has also been written. But no other book has the same remarkable background as the Holy Qur’an. Mozart composed a piece of music when he was less than ten years old, and the well-known Arab poet, Bashsharibn Burd wrote a poem at a very early age. Likewise, Shakespeare has left us a rich collection of masterpieces. In fact he was not counted as an eminent literary figure during his lifetime.
Great achievements have been produced; an unknown youth may write an excellent story or evolve a scientific theory because he is a genius. But ingenuity is not something only possessed by educated people or university graduates. It may appear in the most unexpected quarters. Those who become well-known in the scientific field or in literature or the arts may have been a century ahead of their times, excelling their contemporaries by fifty or even one hundred per cent. However, their excellence will be bound by certain limits and constraints. But no one, in the entire history of mankind, has lived in circumstances similar to those in which Muhammad (peace be upon him) lived, and at the same time has managed to convey a masterpiece to the world similar to the Holy Qur’an.
The Holy Qur’an excels in both its literary values and its unique treatment of law. It contains an entire legal system which is perfect in every detail. As for the theology therein, and the knowledge of the unseen, it gives information which is not known to anyone – information which the human intellect is unable to perceive. It reveals laws and phenomena pertaining to nature which were unknown to anyone, not only during the time of the Prophet” some of these laws were discovered only 1300 years later, while others still remain undiscovered.
The Holy Qur’an challenges all mankind. Men and the jinn were asked to produce ten chapters or at least one, like the chapters of the Holy Qur’an, but they failed to produce even one chapter. This challenge is still open, and the inability still continues. The illimitability of the book is now established beyond doubt. Its excellence is noticeable in every chapter. It would be incorrect to say it can be observed in some and not in others.
We may liken it to a beautiful woman whose beauty is not attributed to or dependent on any single aspect of her appearance – neither her eyes, nor her limbs or specific dimension of her body. It is the composite whole which makes her beautiful. However, it is possible that a person reading the Holy Qur’an may be enamored by the particular part he is concerned with.
One well-known government official declared his faith in Islam when he heard the verse: Does man think that We cannot (resurrect him and) bring his bones together again? Yes indeed. We are able to make whole his very fingertips! (Qur’an;75:3-4). This verse made the official think about the reason why the Almighty referred to the fingertips in particular. What is their significance? Indeed, the fingertips consist of the various patterns of fingerprints. There are no two people whose fingerprints are identical. No doubt it is a Divine act of creation that remained unknown until its discovery in recent times. This is further proof that the Holy Qur’an is a Divine book, revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
There are more facts and information that still remain undiscovered yet are written about in the Holy Qur’an. Every now and then scholars find some new information in it which contributes to human knowledge in general and to the better understanding of Islam by all. It is therefore essential that the Holy Qur’an should be reinterpreted. The man of literature should interpret it according to his field of study, likewise the legal specialist, the astronomer, the psychiatrist, the social scientist and the historian. Each may interpret it in the light of his particular area of study and prove that it is the word of God.
Once the miracles of earlier prophets had happened, they were over. But the miracle of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is ever present and it is renewed every day. The miracles of the earlier prophets served as proof of the message, while in the case of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), his message itself was a miracle. May peace be upon him and all the Prophets and Messengers.
Qur’an is the criteria (Furqan) to judge the right from falsehood. Muslims therefore believe in the other revealed books in the light of Qur’an, where ever the old scriptures differ with what is narrated in the Holy Qur’an, those contradictions are not accepted being a human fabrication or error. Moreover they were for specific people, for specific period, but Qur’an is the last scripture for the humanity till eternity, so now humanity has to believe in Qur’an as a source of divine guidance.
The Holy Qur’an: http://wp.me/PCgrB-bS