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General Issues / Questions => Questions/Comments on the Quran => Topic started by: Alen on November 18, 2008, 05:23:29 AM

Title: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Alen on November 18, 2008, 05:23:29 AM
Peace,
respectfully.

I have asked sheikh last night and i did not get all the answers but i did read an article long time ago and i discovered that the word Makkah means Destruction. Is this true? I'd appreciate the speedy response as well as correct translation and with proofs of course.

Thanks and God bless you.
Glory be to our God.
Peace.
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: bkanwar2 on November 26, 2008, 10:17:05 AM
Good question.  I am not sure that current meaning were there in classic language.  Here is explanation from Lane.

Ba could be changed into Miim in the dialect of Mazin.  Hence it is actually بكة

See referance Lane page for Ba changing to Miim

http://www.studyquran.org/LaneLexicon/Volume1/00000178.pdf (http://www.studyquran.org/LaneLexicon/Volume1/00000178.pdf)

However, Bakkata means " He reprehended or reproached him for an affair or crime with justice or declared his deeds evil or threatened him.

See referance for Bakkata
http://www.studyquran.org/LaneLexicon/Volume1/00000276.pdf (http://www.studyquran.org/LaneLexicon/Volume1/00000276.pdf)

Current meaning of word are well known.  Hope this helps.

Badar
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: bkanwar2 on November 26, 2008, 01:40:56 PM
Just to expand further on this issue as to if really Lane's understading is right that in dialect of Mazin Ba changes to Miim.  Hence, Bakkata becomes Makkah.  Here is the evidence from Quran that these not one and same word.  Hence, what Lane understood was a later linguistic phenomenon/understanding.  Please see below two verses with both words.  Hence suggesting that Ba is not changable in Miim.

3:96 for Bakkah

إِنَّ أَوَّلَ بَيْتٍ وُضِعَ لِلنَّاسِ لَلَّذِي بِبَكَّةَ مُبَارَكًا وَهُدًى لِّلْعَالَمِينَ

48:24 for Makkah

وَهُوَ الَّذِي كَفَّ أَيْدِيَهُمْ عَنكُمْ وَأَيْدِيَكُمْ عَنْهُم بِبَطْنِ مَكَّةَ مِن
بَعْدِ أَنْ أَظْفَرَكُمْ عَلَيْهِمْ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرًا

Comments welcome.

Badar
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: bkanwar2 on November 26, 2008, 02:42:10 PM
Furthermore, you would notice that the word in Lane under Bekkata is written as بكته.  Whereas in verse 48:24 it is written
as بِبَكَّةَ.  Are these same words?

Badar
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: ayman on November 26, 2008, 03:49:31 PM
Peace Alen,

Here is Yusuf Ali's modified translation of 48:24 using Classical Arabic dictionaries and the context of war from the verses to translate the common noun "makka":

48:24. And it is He Who has restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst of destruction after that He gave you the victory over them. And Allah sees well all that ye do.

I used Yusuf Ali's translation but while he left "makka" un-translated, I didn't. As one can easily see, the clear classical Arabic meaning fits perfectly in the context of the military standoff in verse 48:24.

Peace,

Ayman
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: herbman on September 21, 2009, 06:18:35 AM
Peace Alen,

Here is Yusuf Ali's modified translation of 48:24 using Classical Arabic dictionaries and the context of war from the verses to translate the common noun "makka":

48:24. And it is He Who has restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst of destruction after that He gave you the victory over them. And Allah sees well all that ye do.

I used Yusuf Ali's translation but while he left "makka" un-translated, I didn't. As one can easily see, the clear classical Arabic meaning fits perfectly in the context of the military standoff in verse 48:24.

Peace,

Ayman

Salam all,


I proposed the following translation, the answer is the following:

if makkata would mean destruction as you suggest, gramatically we should have :"bibatni makkatan" or "bibatni almakkati" following the rule.
Instead we have "bibatni makkata". The rule in arabic should be  "bibatni makkati" cause it is a moudaf ilayh. But we have here a mamnou3 minasarf then we do the nasb.

Please help

If sister Samia or someone else could help, you are welcome. Thanks

ps: eidkoum mubarak to all
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: herbman on September 21, 2009, 06:42:58 AM
Salam all,


I proposed the following translation, the answer is the following:

if makkata would mean destruction as you suggest, gramatically we should have :"bibatni makkatan" or "bibatni almakkati" following the rule.
Instead we have "bibatni makkata". The rule in arabic should be  "bibatni makkati" cause it is a moudaf ilayh. But we have here a mamnou3 minasarf then we do the nasb.

Please help

If sister Samia or someone else could help, you are welcome. Thanks

ps: eidkoum mubarak to all


I think I got it but need some someone to confirm:

Wahuwa allathee kaffa  aydiyahum AAankum waaydiyakum AAanhum bibatni makkata min baAAdi an athfarakum AAalayhim wakana Allahu bima taAAmaloona baseeran



"bi batni makkata" is maf3ul bih then it is in nasb state but bibatni is force to have jara because of bi

is it correct or am I totally wrong?
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: herbman on September 21, 2009, 08:23:18 AM
I searched about this grammatical rule  الممنوع من الصرف :

and strangely Makkah is named in the rule to support this:

http://www.drmosad.com/index20.htm

also read the article from Anwar to explain this grammatical non-sens:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/quranists/message/9

wa salam

Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: ayman on September 21, 2009, 12:19:27 PM
Peace Herbman,

I searched about this grammatical rule  الممنوع من الصرف :
and strangely Makkah is named in the rule to support this:
http://www.drmosad.com/index20.htm
also read the article from Anwar to explain this grammatical non-sens:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/quranists/message/9
wa salam

This post might help prove why the vocalization marks, specifically vocalization case endings, are a later addition by grammarians:

http://free-minds.org/forum/index.php?topic=9598276.msg201108#msg201108

Peace,

Ayman
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Alen on September 21, 2009, 02:17:18 PM
Peace Alen,

Here is Yusuf Ali's modified translation of 48:24 using Classical Arabic dictionaries and the context of war from the verses to translate the common noun "makka":
48:24. And it is He Who has restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst of destruction after that He gave you the victory over them. And Allah sees well all that ye do.
I used Yusuf Ali's translation but while he left "makka" un-translated, I didn't. As one can easily see, the clear classical Arabic meaning fits perfectly in the context of the military standoff in verse 48:24.
Peace,
Ayman

Peace,
Respectfully.

Thank you very much and may The Exalted God bless you, brother.
This will help me. AlhamdilAllah.

Peace.
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: herbman on September 22, 2009, 12:26:22 AM
Peace Herbman,

This post might help prove why the vocalization marks, specifically vocalization case endings, are a later addition by grammarians:

http://free-minds.org/forum/index.php?topic=9598276.msg201108#msg201108

Peace,

Ayman

Thank you Ayman, it was of a great help.  May God reward you and give us strength to continue.

Peace
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Mazhar on September 24, 2009, 10:32:55 PM
48:24. And it is He Who has restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst of destruction after that He gave you the victory over them. And Allah sees well all that ye do.

After the victory of one of the two conflicting parties the phenomenon of destruction is already over. After the victory of one group which means crushing defeat of the other party, "restraining of hands in the midst of destruction" is quite a funny statement. The advancing army on a city keeps following the enemy troops who retreat to the inner of the city and the swords can come to a halt inside the city only when the retreating army/remaining soldiers surrender the weapons. On surrender/dropping of the arms by the remaining defeated army the victorious army also hold back their hand.
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Ahmad Bilal on September 25, 2009, 06:27:10 AM
The passage (i.e. Q. 48:24) is in the past tense. Therefore, it would have to be translated as, based on Ayman's translation of "makka":

And it is He Who restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst/valley of destruction after He had given you victory over them. And Allah is Seer of what you do. (Q. 48:24)

Translating "makka" as destruction would be illogical, since it points out that it was AFTER Allah had given the people victory. Therefore, they weren't facing destruction, they were already victorious... Also, the passage says that the people were restrained from eachother (i.e. "restrained their hands from you and your hands from them..."), and this wouldn't make sense in translating it as "in the midst of destruction", since it applies to both parties. How were BOTH of them in the midst of destruction? In a battle, there is a victor and there's a loser; there can't be two losers. Therefore, one of them had to have been facing destruction while the other wasn't. But this is not what the passage says. Rather, it implies that they were both in the same place (or in this sense, facing the same end). In order for this to make sense, "makka" has to be a proper noun, referring to the name of a place, not a common noun, especially not meaning "destruction"...

If it's being translated as a common noun, it still has to be referring to a place or location. So, where is "babatni makkata"?
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Q_student on September 25, 2009, 06:41:17 AM
The passage (i.e. Q. 48:24) is in the past tense. Therefore, it would have to be translated as, based on Ayman's translation of "makka":

And it is He Who restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst/valley of destruction after He had given you victory over them. And Allah is Seer of what you do. (Q. 48:24)

Translating "makka" as destruction would be illogical, since it points out that it was AFTER Allah had given the people victory. Therefore, they weren't facing destruction, they were already victorious... Also, the passage says that the people were restrained from eachother (i.e. "restrained their hands from you and your hands from them..."), and this wouldn't make sense in translating it as "in the midst of destruction", since it applies to both parties. How were BOTH of them in the midst of destruction? In a battle, there is a victor and there's a loser; there can't be two losers. Therefore, one of them had to have been facing destruction while the other wasn't. But this is not what the passage says. Rather, it implies that they were both in the same place (or in this sense, facing the same end). In order for this to make sense, "makka" has to be a proper noun, referring to the name of a place, not a common noun, especially not meaning "destruction"...

If it's being translated as a common noun, it still has to be referring to a place or location. So, where is "babatni makkata"?
Peace :
Brother you are right.
Makkah never means destruction. Because it is not "ismul masdar of the verb Makka".
Anyone who claims that it means "destruction" he will have to prove first that it is "Verbal noun" of the verb MaKKa.
المعجم الوسيط - (ج 2 / ص 682)
( مك )
العظم مكا  مص جميع ما فيه وغريمه ألح عليه في الاقتضاء والشيء نقصه أو أهلكه

Its verbal noun is only one i.e Makkun not Makkatu

Secondly a verbal noun is never used as a "diptote" while the word Makkatu is used as a Diptote (Proper Noun) in the Quran.
Regards
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: herbman on September 25, 2009, 07:10:26 AM
The passage (i.e. Q. 48:24) is in the past tense. Therefore, it would have to be translated as, based on Ayman's translation of "makka":

And it is He Who restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst/valley of destruction after He had given you victory over them. And Allah is Seer of what you do. (Q. 48:24)

Translating "makka" as destruction would be illogical, since it points out that it was AFTER Allah had given the people victory. Therefore, they weren't facing destruction, they were already victorious... Also, the passage says that the people were restrained from eachother (i.e. "restrained their hands from you and your hands from them..."), and this wouldn't make sense in translating it as "in the midst of destruction", since it applies to both parties. How were BOTH of them in the midst of destruction? In a battle, there is a victor and there's a loser; there can't be two losers. Therefore, one of them had to have been facing destruction while the other wasn't. But this is not what the passage says. Rather, it implies that they were both in the same place (or in this sense, facing the same end). In order for this to make sense, "makka" has to be a proper noun, referring to the name of a place, not a common noun, especially not meaning "destruction"...

If it's being translated as a common noun, it still has to be referring to a place or location. So, where is "babatni makkata"?

read the verse following 48:24, and you will see it makes sense.

peace
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: afridi220 on September 25, 2009, 07:18:09 AM
read the verse following 48:24, and you will see it makes sense.

peace

Read all the verses togather.

48:24] He is the One who withheld their hands of aggression against you, and withheld your hands of aggression against them in the valley of Mecca, after He had granted you victory over them. GOD is Seer of everything you do.

[48:25] It is they who disbelieved and barred you from the Sacred Masjid, and even prevented your offerings from reaching their destination. There were believing men and women (within the enemy camp) whom you did not know, and you were about to hurt them, unknowingly. GOD thus admits into His mercy whomever He wills. If they persist, He will requite those among them who disbelieve with a painful retribution.

[48:26] While those who disbelieved were enraged, and their hearts were filled with the pride of the days of ignorance, GOD blessed His messenger and the believers with peaceful contentment, and directed them to uphold the word of righteousness. This is what they well deserved. GOD is fully aware of all things.

[48:27] GOD has fulfilled His messenger's truthful vision: "You will enter the Sacred Masjid, GOD willing, perfectly secure, and you will cut your hair or shorten it (as you fulfill the pilgrimage rituals) there. You will not have any fear. Since He knew what you did not know, He has coupled this with an immediate victory
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: ayman on September 25, 2009, 07:20:01 AM
Peace Mazhar,

48:24. And it is He Who has restrained their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst of destruction after that He gave you the victory over them. And Allah sees well all that ye do.
After the victory of one of the two conflicting parties the phenomenon of destruction is already over. After the victory of one group which means crushing defeat of the other party, "restraining of hands in the midst of destruction" is quite a funny statement. The advancing army on a city keeps following the enemy troops who retreat to the inner of the city and the swords can come to a halt inside the city only when the retreating army/remaining soldiers surrender the weapons. On surrender/dropping of the arms by the remaining defeated army the victorious army also hold back their hand.

So you know that it is a city. This is also confirmed by 48:25 which clearly indicates the presence of civilian non combatants. In ancient times almost all cities had walls and fortifications to protect them from attackers. Since 48:24 indicates the imminency of hand to hand combat then we can deduce that the walls and fortifications that protect the city were destroyed and breached and nothing kept the two armies from engaging in hand to hand combat in the midst of this destruction. Also, once the city walls are destroyed, then the invaders have the upper hand and pretty much victory of the invading army is almost certainly guaranteed. Notice the use of the word "athfarakum" (gave you the upper hand) not "nasarakum" (gave you victory) in 48:24.

MKKH مكة means "destruction" in the same way that the same form NKBH   نكبة means "disaster" (same exact form F3LH). This is a mundane form and a well known fact in Arabic that only the most ignorant can deny.

Peace,

Ayman
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Mazhar on September 25, 2009, 11:48:34 AM
Peace Mazhar,

So you know that it is a city. This is also confirmed by 48:25 which clearly indicates the presence of civilian non combatants. In ancient times almost all cities had walls and fortifications to protect them from attackers. Since 48:24 indicates the imminency of hand to hand combat then we can deduce that the walls and fortifications that protect the city were destroyed and breached and nothing kept the two armies from engaging in hand to hand combat in the midst of this destruction. Also, once the city walls are destroyed, then the invaders have the upper hand and pretty much victory of the invading army is almost certainly guaranteed. Notice the use of the word "athfarakum" (gave you the upper hand) not "nasarakum" (gave you victory) in 48:24.  
MKKH مكة means "destruction" in the same way that the same form NKBH   نكبة means "disaster" (same exact form F3LH). This is a mundane form and a well known fact in Arabic that only the most ignorant can deny.

Peace,

Ayman

"athfarakum"  is more close to convey the perception of victory, dominance as compared to "nasarakum", helped you. Mecca never had fortification wall. It has always been an open city in the history and in the Qur'aan.
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: ayman on September 25, 2009, 01:19:24 PM
Peace Mazhar,

"athfarakum"  is more close to convey the perception of victory, dominance as compared to "nasarakum", helped you. Mecca never had fortification wall. It has always been an open city in the history and in the Qur'aan.

Saying that Mecca never had fortification walls while this discussion is about the meaning of "mecca" is a circular argument. You have already baselessly assumed that "mecca" is the name of some town. Please read the title of this thread. What you are saying is like saying "in ancient times vampires never slept during the day". First you have to prove that there was such as thing as "vampires".

Peace,

Ayman
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Ahmad Bilal on September 25, 2009, 02:23:17 PM
Peace Ayman,

Can you explain how the context of the passage implies that "makka" means destruction? You quoted from Yusuf Ali's translation, but that's not even a proper translation, since it conveys the incident in a present tense. Since the actual reading of this passage is referring to something that happened in the past (from the time of that revelation), it changes the idea of the message. It implies that BOTH parties/armies were in "babatni makkata" (i.e. midst of destruction, valley/borders of Makka). How is it possible that they were all in the "midst of destruction" if Allah gave the believers the victory? How could BOTH groups be facing impending destruction from the other?

Also, if "makka" was being described as a common noun (i.e. destruction) which was impending upon the people, and Allah was giving a description of the events, wouldn't it make more sense to clearly identify the event with "the" (i.e. babatni al makkati), instead of leaving it separate in the form of an adjective or a proper name? I could be wrong, though... What's your take on this?

Peace,

Ahmad
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Q_student on September 25, 2009, 02:29:39 PM
Peace Mazhar,

Saying that Mecca never had fortification walls while this discussion is about the meaning of "mecca" is a circular argument. You have already baselessly assumed that "mecca" is the name of some town. Please read the title of this thread. What you are saying is like saying "in ancient times vampires never slept during the day". First you have to prove that there was such as thing as "vampires".

Peace,

Ayman

Peace :
Ayman ! you do not understand such a simple linguistic principle that "Proper Nouns " are not translated.
As we do not translate January ,February ,March ,or Sunday ,Monday etc.So Mecca being a Proper Noun cannot be Translated.
Is this not used as a Diptote in the Quran ??????????????????????
Regards
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Mazhar on September 26, 2009, 11:53:19 AM
Peace Mazhar,

Saying that Mecca never had fortification walls while this discussion is about the meaning of "mecca" is a circular argument. You have already baselessly assumed that "mecca" is the name of some town. Please read the title of this thread. What you are saying is like saying "in ancient times vampires never slept during the day". First you have to prove that there was such as thing as "vampires".

Peace,

Ayman

What you quoted back was a parethetic. Issue was about your conclusion:
Quote
Notice the use of the word "athfarakum" (gave you the upper hand) not "nasarakum" (gave you victory) in
48:24. Ayman

This was responded:
Quote
"athfarakum"  is more close to convey the perception of victory, dominance as compared to "nasarakum", helped you.

Which of the two is true? Pl opine.
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: ayman on September 28, 2009, 04:44:36 PM
Peace Ahmad,

Can you explain how the context of the passage implies that "makka" means destruction?

The context is a war in an urban area. War in an urban area and destruction go hand in hand. This is especially true in ancient times where urban areas had fortifications and walls that had to be destroyed for the army to enter the town and hand to hand street combat to take place.

You quoted from Yusuf Ali's translation, but that's not even a proper translation, since it conveys the incident in a present tense. Since the actual reading of this passage is referring to something that happened in the past (from the time of that revelation), it changes the idea of the message. It implies that BOTH parties/armies were in "babatni makkata" (i.e. midst of destruction, valley/borders of Makka). How is it possible that they were all in the "midst of destruction" if Allah gave the believers the victory? How could BOTH groups be facing impending destruction from the other?

Can you please show the word "nasr" (victory) in the passage? The exact word used is "athfarakum" (gave you the upper hand). So here we clearly have a situation where the following things happened (in sequence):

1. The walls and fortifications AROUND the city have been destroyed.
2. As a result of this destruction, now the invading army has the upper hand and it is a virtual certainty that they will win the war.
3. The invading army enters the city and meets with its defenders and therefore both are in the MIDST/CENTER of the destruction that is AROUND them.
4. Hand to hand street combat is about to begin.
5. Cooler heads prevail and the fighting is stopped to avert civilian casualties.

Also, if "makka" was being described as a common noun (i.e. destruction) which was impending upon the people, and Allah was giving a description of the events, wouldn't it make more sense to clearly identify the event with "the" (i.e. babatni al makkati), instead of leaving it separate in the form of an adjective or a proper name? I could be wrong, though... What's your take on this?

What you are saying would make sense only if the specific type of destruction or what was specifically destroyed was important or was mentioned elsewhere. In this instance, clearly this doesn't add value to the idea of the passage since, for example, it doesn't matter if the destruction happened as a result of catapults or rams or whatever. The important thing is that there was destruction around them. So the indefinite "destruction" works better and is more to the point.

Peace,

Ayman
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: ayman on September 28, 2009, 04:57:52 PM
Peace Q_student,

Ayman ! you do not understand such a simple linguistic principle that "Proper Nouns " are not translated.
As we do not translate January ,February ,March ,or Sunday ,Monday etc.So Mecca being a Proper Noun cannot be Translated.
Is this not used as a Diptote in the Quran ??????????????????????

In order to know if it is Diptote according to CA rules, you had to look at the vocalization mark on the final Taa Marbuta in "mekkah". It is an indisputable fact that the great reading doesn't follow the CA rules for vocalization marks, especially those at the endings of words. I am 100% sure that you don't follow them either. So like those other instances where you completely ignore the case endings inserted by grammarians when you read the great reading in its real Arabic tongue, the vocalization mark at the end of the word "mekkah" should also be ignored. I hope that I was clear since what I am saying is very well known. If not, please let me know what doesn't make sense and why and I can try to provide more info and examples strictly from internal evidence from the great reading alone. Thanks.

Peace,

Ayman
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Ahmad Bilal on September 28, 2009, 06:26:14 PM
Peace Ayman,

The context is a war in an urban area. War in an urban area and destruction go hand in hand. This is especially true in ancient times where urban areas had fortifications and walls that had to be destroyed for the army to enter the town and hand to hand street combat to take place.

Agreed.

Can you please show the word "nasr" (victory) in the passage? The exact word used is "athfarakum" (gave you the upper hand).

I disagree with this one. Doesn't "athfarakum" mean something more like 'gave you triumph'? It comes from the word "azfara", which literally implies being victorious or successful, triumphing over another.
http://www.studyquran.co.uk/27_ZA.htm

So here we clearly have a situation where the following things happened (in sequence):

1. The walls and fortifications AROUND the city have been destroyed.
2. As a result of this destruction, now the invading army has the upper hand and it is a virtual certainty that they will win the war.
3. The invading army enters the city and meets with its defenders and therefore both are in the MIDST/CENTER of the destruction that is AROUND them.
4. Hand to hand street combat is about to begin.
5. Cooler heads prevail and the fighting is stopped to avert civilian casualties.

I understand your concept of the order of events. However, since "azfara" implies one group being victorious over another, then it doesn't make sense to say that BOTH groups were in the midst of destruction. The city is considered the sanctuary. Therefore, once it's walls are breached, the residents of the city are considered to be in danger, or in the midst of destruction. However, this would NOT apply to both parties; it would only apply to those who's city is facing annihilation. The other (invading) army would be considered victorious.

What you are saying would make sense only if the specific type of destruction or what was specifically destroyed was important or was mentioned elsewhere. In this instance, clearly this doesn't add value to the idea of the passage since, for example, it doesn't matter if the destruction happened as a result of catapults or rams or whatever. The important thing is that there was destruction around them. So the indefinite "destruction" works better and is more to the point.

That's an interesting take on it, but it would seem to make more sense if the definate article ("al") was used in this verse, since it would specifiy exactly what "destruction" was being mentioned, i.e. babatni al makkati. The people would know what the passage is speaking of, instead of leaving it up in the air. In this case, nobody knows what battle is being referred to, since no date or location is mentioned... Still, thanks for your input. It's a very good perspective, and it's something we should definately look into...

Peace,

Ahmad
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: ayman on September 28, 2009, 07:06:14 PM
Peace Ahmad,

I disagree with this one. Doesn't "athfarakum" mean something more like 'gave you triumph'? It comes from the word "azfara", which literally implies being victorious or successful, triumphing over another.
http://www.studyquran.co.uk/27_ZA.htm
I understand your concept of the order of events. However, since "azfara" implies one group being victorious over another, then it doesn't make sense to say that BOTH groups were in the midst of destruction. The city is considered the sanctuary.

I think that given the relationship of the word with claws. It is better understood as "put them within your claws", in other words "gave you the upper hand". This is similar to an eagle who catches a prey with its claws but hasn't finished it off yet. So now the eagle has the upper hand and the demise of the prey is almost certain.

Therefore, once it's walls are breached, the residents of the city are considered to be in danger, or in the midst of destruction. However, this would NOT apply to both parties; it would only apply to those who's city is facing annihilation. The other (invading) army would be considered victorious.

Destruction and danger are two separate issues. An army can be in danger in the middle of the desert with no destruction around. In this case, both armies were in the midst of destruction. The term that conveys danger is "athfarkum 3alayhm" or "put them within your claws", indicating that only the defenders of the city were in danger.

That's an interesting take on it, but it would seem to make more sense if the definate article ("al") was used in this verse, since it would specifiy exactly what "destruction" was being mentioned, i.e. babatni al makkati. The people would know what the passage is speaking of, instead of leaving it up in the air. In this case, nobody knows what battle is being referred to, since no date or location is mentioned... Still, thanks for your input. It's a very good perspective, and it's something we should definately look into...

Do you know of any other instances in the great reading where the date and location of a battle or anything else is mentioned? I would say that leaving info that is not relevant to the lesson to be learned up in the air is the norm in the great reading. It is the other way around that would have been abnormal.

Peace,

Ayman
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: Ahmad Bilal on September 28, 2009, 09:44:13 PM
Peace Ayman,

I think that given the relationship of the word with claws. It is better understood as "put them within your claws", in other words "gave you the upper hand". This is similar to an eagle who catches a prey with its claws but hasn't finished it off yet. So now the eagle has the upper hand and the demise of the prey is almost certain.

 :hmm Okay, that sounds like a very possible meaning, based on that analogy...

Destruction and danger are two separate issues. An army can be in danger in the middle of the desert with no destruction around. In this case, both armies were in the midst of destruction. The term that conveys danger is "athfarkum 3alayhm" or "put them within your claws", indicating that only the defenders of the city were in danger.

This makes sense, but it still has the idea of victory contained in it. For example, "zafiyra" refers to a conquest or a success, rising above another, or gaining possession of something. Even if you looked at this from the standpoint of "putting them within your claws (or grasp/clutches)", it still implies a definate victory. Or am I misinterpreting this? To me, it sounds like one army is winning, while the other is losing.

Do you know of any other instances in the great reading where the date and location of a battle or anything else is mentioned? I would say that leaving info that is not relevant to the lesson to be learned up in the air is the norm in the great reading. It is the other way around that would have been abnormal.

You're correct, I agree with you on this. In nearly all cases (that I've seen), the date and place have been left out because they're not necessary to the teaching of the story... The problem, however, comes in with this case because Makka (the place) is regarded as the location of the "hajj". Therefore, this place would have to be mentioned in the Qur'aan in order to give it stability. So, if (hypothetically) this is the location of the "hajj", then it would be perfectly sensible for the Qur'aan to mention the location of this place, especially if relaying it as a historical event that's religiously relevant. It does the same thing for the countries of Egypt and Babylon when pertaining to the Israelites, since these are events the Israelites could easily attest to and declare as factual according to their history. This is an event implied in the surrounding verses...

For example, Q. 48:20 says that Allah withheld the hands of the people from the believers. 48:21 says that He eliminated their opposition, whom they believed they couldn't have possibly defeated. 48:22 says that the disbelievers would flee from them. 48:23 says that this is Allah's system, and He's done these same things throughout history. Then, 48:24 gives a descriptive example of how He aided them. Plus, 48:25 goes moreso into detail regarding how and why He aided them, and it mentions how He kept them from harming the believers among those opposing nations...

As we can see from these verses, the passage is referring to a specific event. It's not a general battle of moral illustration, it's speaking about an actual event, one that the listeners would be aware of and grow in belief. Therefore, like the case of the Israelites, it would make sense for the Qur'aan to give the name of the area, since it would strengthen the believers, because they'd undoubtedly be aware of the event... At least how I see it.

Peace,

Ahmad
Title: Re: What Does The Word Makkah Mean?
Post by: herbman on September 29, 2009, 02:43:16 AM
Peace,

48:24] He is the One who withheld their hands of aggression against you, and withheld your hands of aggression against them in the mids of Mecca, after He had granted you victory over them. GOD is Seer of everything you do.

[48:25] It is they who disbelieved and barred you from the Sacred Masjid, and even prevented your offerings from reaching their destination. There were believing men and women (within the enemy camp) whom you did not know, and you were about to hurt them, unknowingly. GOD thus admits into His mercy whomever He wills. If they persist, He will requite those among them who disbelieve with a painful retribution.

My understanding  of Mekkah would be better translated with the word "chaos" instead of "destruction".
Then the "context" is explained by itself, in the middle of chaos God withheld their hands from yours because you were about to hurt innocents.

regards