Read the Qur'an/Koran in One Year (It's Short..like the NT) All Welcome :) - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 141 Old 01-10-2009, 09:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi Everybody, Assalamu Alaikum, Peace Be Upon You:

So, I thought I'd start a Read the Qur'an in a Year thread... after being influenced by the Read the Bible thread.

This is open to Muslims and non-Muslims.

I think an easy way to work it will be to post the reading for the week... and then people can write thoughts/comments or simply DONE... if they want.

If anybody/somebody wants to post any sort of background on the texts for that week, that's great too.

You don't need to own a copy of the Qur'an.. .there are plenty online.


There's also some Tasfeer online in English at tasfir.com Tasfeer is like commentary and such. If you have other recommendations, post them.
http://quran-online.net/

Basically, to get through it in one year... you'll need to read about 125 ayat (verses) per week. 21 per day... allowing one day to catch up.


If you're game, sign up... and let me know if you'd like to start on Monday Insha'Allah (God-Willing)...., and whether or not you're interested in just doing 21 or so ayat per day next week or want to try and catch up for the past 11 days or so.


Thanks

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#2 of 141 Old 01-10-2009, 09:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Week of January 12 - January 18th, 2009

Day 1

Surah Al-Fatiha (The Opening) 1-7
Surah Al-Bakarah (The Cow) 1-14

Day 2
Surah Al-Bakarah (The Cow) 15-39

Day 3
Surah Al-Bakarah (The Cow) 40-61

Day 4
Surah Al-Bakarah (The Cow) 62-86

Day 5
Surah Al-Bakarah (The Cow) 87-112

Day 6
Surah Al-Bakarah (The Cow) 113-141

Day 7
Make Up Day/Free Day

Questions:
What were your favorite parts?

Were there anything ayat/verses that you wanted to write down and perhaps memorize in either English or Arabic?

Was there anything that you found particularly troubling?

Which translation, if any, did you use?

Did you read any commentary/tasfir?

Do you think the amount of reading is do-able? Would you prefer it to be less?


Week 2 is on post 70

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#3 of 141 Old 01-10-2009, 10:17 PM
 
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Kinda OT, but not too far off. Just a curious question - how many pages does the Koran run in either Arabic or an English translation?

By comparison, my Revised Standard Version Bible (no study notes) has 928 pages for the Old Testament, 284 for the New Testament, and another 277 for the Deutero-canonical books. It doesn't have dinky type, either.

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#4 of 141 Old 01-10-2009, 10:26 PM
 
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I am in, I already have a copy that I've read some of but I don't have the education to really understand it. I think the reading schedule you posted is fine, I've found that if I don't keep up every day I end up not doing it at all because I forget and it isn't a habit.

I have this one translated by M.A.A. Abdel Haleem which is hopefully good. I had tried to find a commentary before but had no idea where to start in choosing one.


Tradd, mine is about 400 pages, including the index.

Umsami, can you recommend a good source either online or in print for commentary?

I'm willing to catch up if anyone else wants to, otherwise I will just take this weekend to get a jump start for next week
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#5 of 141 Old 01-10-2009, 10:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tradd View Post
Kinda OT, but not too far off. Just a curious question - how many pages does the Koran run in either Arabic or an English translation?

By comparison, my Revised Standard Version Bible (no study notes) has 928 pages for the Old Testament, 284 for the New Testament, and another 277 for the Deutero-canonical books. It doesn't have dinky type, either.
The only versions I have include both Arabic and English on the page. Let's see... the one that's closest is 580 pages. The English takes up most of the page... and then the Arabic is in a smaller font, to the right (although not that small... definitely legible if you read Arabic.)

I'll have to see if I have any English only versions. I do have some Arabic-only ones, but to be honest, my Arabic is so bad, I wouldn't trust myself to read the page numbers. :P

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#6 of 141 Old 01-10-2009, 10:57 PM
 
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I'll sign up. Monday is fine with me.
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#7 of 141 Old 01-10-2009, 11:58 PM
 
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sign me up!! I think it is important for everyone to use the tafseer (explanation) along with the reading of the Qu'ran because it gives an essential background needed to give an acurate understanding. Like um Sami posted, tafsir.com is a great one!

Cant wait!! :

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#8 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 12:12 AM
 
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I was wondering why I couldn't find it, thanks for posting it again the spelling was wrong and I kept getting sent to ebay
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#9 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 12:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Sadly, there's not a lot of English commentary out there. I have a few Qur'ans that include commentary with it... but it's sort of a hit or miss.

Probably one of the best known ones that comes to mind is called "In the Shade of the Qur'an" by Sayyid Qutb. I don't know if it's just me... but the one I have only covers the last Juz (part) of the Qur'an... so it's nowhere near complete.

I'll keep looking to see what I can find.

I guess, for those who are interested, I'll tell you that surahs (chapters) are usually designated as either Meccan or Medinan. Basically, that refers to when they were revealed (in Mecca or Medina). It refers to the hijra... migration... when Prophet Muhammad and his followers moved from Mecca to Medina in 622 CE/AD.

The way the surahs are organized is not chronological... so you can go from a Meccan surah to a Medina one. They were all revealed and written down in the lifetime of the Prophet, though.

Let's see... Surah 1, Al-Fatihah, is a Meccan surah. It's often compared to the Lord's Prayer in Islam.... perhaps because it's repeated so often, perhaps because it sort of contains Islam in a nutshell. It's only seven verses long... and it is a required part of prayer. So if a Muslim is praying the five times per day, they're supposed to... they're actually repeating Al Fatihah at least 17 times.

Surah 2, Al-Bakarah (the Cow), is a Medinan surah. It's the longest surah in the Qur'an... so I always feel a sense of accomplishment when I read through it. OK, just found this on wiki to make my life easier...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Baqara It goes into a lot of details and such.

Here's another good introduction on the Surah http://www.islam.us/Quran_ArbEng/i002.htm

When we get to it, I'll try and remind you to make note of verse 255, also known as the Ayat-al-Kursi. It's another famous verse that many people memorize. You'll see people with plaques of it and such in their homes. A lot of people recite it before bed and such.

Hope this helps...

Mom to DS(8), DS(6), DD(4), and DS(1).  "Kids do as well as they can."

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#10 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 12:39 AM
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I'm in too!

My English-only version is 423 little pages (Abdullah Yusaf Ali version)and my bilingual one (Majid Fakhry) is 637 bigger pages... I try to read it in both languages, because I do find differences, or things that are clear in Arabic but not so clear in English, if that makes sense.

I was mostly reading back to front, because the shorter surat were much easier for me to wrap my head around... so it will be good to have a group!

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#11 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 12:53 AM
 
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Thanks for your answers to my question!

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#12 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 12:54 AM
 
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I'm in!

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#13 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 01:36 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umsami View Post
Probably one of the best known ones that comes to mind is called "In the Shade of the Qur'an" by Sayyid Qutb. I don't know if it's just me... but the one I have only covers the last Juz (part) of the Qur'an... so it's nowhere near complete.
He actually did cover the whole Quran, but it is many, many volumes, and a little expensive to obtain the lot (like most commentaries, come to think of it). Just a kind of a side note, in case you were interested in it for personal reference ... not recommending it for the purposes of this thread. islamicbookstore.com sells them.
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#14 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 01:41 AM
 
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I'm in! I will pick up a copy tomorrow at the bookstore - any good recommendations on translations? I don't do well reading too much on the computer; plus I like the feel of a book in my hands.

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#15 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 09:56 AM
 
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I'm in! I'll read online.
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#17 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 10:36 AM
 
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I'm subscribing to this thread. I'm non-Muslim but very interested in studying and educating myself about the Qur'an. I'm going to read online until I find myself a copy or two of the Qur'an.

The translations I'm interested in finding are an older one by A. J. Arberry and then a very recent version by Tarif Khalidi. Both translations have been favoured by Ziauddin Sardar, a British Muslim whose own work I enjoy reading.

"and whether or not you're interested in just doing 21 or so ayat per day next week or want to try and catch up for the past 11 days or so."

Either option is fine with me.
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#18 of 141 Old 01-11-2009, 09:42 PM
 
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oh i am so excited! tomorrow is the first day!!!:
I am going to read my stuff tonight so that i can post some notes online. Cant wait!!

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#19 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 12:14 AM
 
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I'm intrigued. I've just begun digging into the Bible as well, so I may decide not to study them both at the same time, but I'm willing to try.

I would like some advice regarding version/commentaries, considering:

- I am totally ignorant regarding the Qur'an and Islam; my interest is to not remain ignorant on the Qur'an and Islam
- I enjoy beginning to look at a piece of writing in its barest essence with an eye to the historical/cultural context from which it originally emerged; I prefer a translation that isn't geared to a specific denomination or sect (if Islam has that sort of thing)
- I like translations which explain why they translated certain words a certain way, or, if the English doesn't cut it (English often isn't as expressive as other languages), expands upon the fuller meaning of a word or phrase in the original language
- I prefer commentaries that include multiple interpretations/perspectives
- I only read English

Any advice on where to start in terms of translation/commentaries considering this?

Phanta
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#20 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 12:20 AM
 
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I want to thank Umsami for starting this thread and wish you all well in this endevour. It's inspired me to make a commitment to increasing my own spiritual practice, so I will be bowing out. Good luck to you all though!
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#21 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 01:06 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantasmagoria View Post
I'm intrigued. I've just begun digging into the Bible as well, so I may decide not to study them both at the same time, but I'm willing to try.

I would like some advice regarding version/commentaries, considering:

- I am totally ignorant regarding the Qur'an and Islam; my interest is to not remain ignorant on the Qur'an and Islam
- I enjoy beginning to look at a piece of writing in its barest essence with an eye to the historical/cultural context from which it originally emerged; I prefer a translation that isn't geared to a specific denomination or sect (if Islam has that sort of thing)
- I like translations which explain why they translated certain words a certain way, or, if the English doesn't cut it (English often isn't as expressive as other languages), expands upon the fuller meaning of a word or phrase in the original language
- I prefer commentaries that include multiple interpretations/perspectives
- I only read English

Any advice on where to start in terms of translation/commentaries considering this?

Phanta
I think there are probably others on this site who could better guide you as to which translation to use, but one recommendation that I will make which I think is essential for anyone trying to understand the Qu'ran, is to read it along with what we call "tafsir". It is an explaination of the Qu'ran by the scholars of Islam- it has been mentioned before but i will list it again... www.tafsir.com

hope that helps

umm Muhammad

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#22 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 01:42 AM
 
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So long as everyone is dealing with different translations anyway, is anyone who is able planning on reading in Arabic?
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#23 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 01:49 AM
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So long as everyone is dealing with different translations anyway, is anyone who is able planning on reading in Arabic?
I am planning to try... I'll have to read both, because I am by no means fluent, but I definitely will start with the Arabic and then check the translation(s) to make sure I'm getting it.

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#24 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 02:17 AM
 
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I am planning to try... I'll have to read both, because I am by no means fluent, but I definitely will start with the Arabic and then check the translation(s) to make sure I'm getting it.

Dar
same here

DH can help me too

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#25 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 03:32 PM
 
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Oh good. I feel better about struggling along with that if I'm not the only one. I read pretty much in translation anyway; I was thinking this whole structured approach might be a good push towards getting away from them a little bit.
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#26 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 08:41 PM
 
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Are we discussing/commenting on a daily basis, or saving the discussion for the end of the week? I finished today's reading (and most of the introduction to the translation I bought).

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#27 of 141 Old 01-12-2009, 09:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Are we discussing/commenting on a daily basis, or saving the discussion for the end of the week? I finished today's reading (and most of the introduction to the translation I bought).
I think it's up to you guys. I'm fine with discussing after each day's reading or waiting until the end.


Which translation, if any, are you reading? Right now, I'm reading one by Ahmed Ali, but I have tons... so I might switch around.


Any thoughts, comments on either Al Fatiha or the beginning bit of Al-Bakarah? I don't want to monopolize the conversation... so I'll leave it at that.


Oh, I did want to address the random letters in the beginning of Al-Bakarah. Alif, Lam, Mim (Basically Arabic alphabet versions of A, L, and M). Here's a bit on them http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muqatta%27at

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#28 of 141 Old 01-13-2009, 12:10 AM
 
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Hi!

I'm totally new to this. Here are my first thoughts, not knowing what is coming, and many questions.

------------------------------------------------------------

Section Addressed: Al-Faatiha
Topic: First Impressions
Qur'an: http://quran-online.net/

From this reading, I view the character of Allah through the eyes of the speaker as:
- kind (important...mentioned twice)
- merciful (important...mentioned twice)
- powerful, as expressed by the use of "Master"
- one who is served by others (not sure how at this point)
- a judge

Basic character of the speaker:
- a servant to Allah
- earnest
- desirous of following what is right
- trust in Allah as a guide with something to say to the speaker (and others) personally
- belief in the consequences of being on the wrong path, and the benefits of being on the right path
- belief that consequences and benefits come from Allah

Places mentioned:
- "Worlds"...I don't know what these are yet.

Events mentioned:
- "Day of Judgement" ...I don't know what it looks like yet, where it is in time (past, present, future), etc. The speaker indicates Allah is in charge on that day.

First thoughts:
7 Ayat (is that the correct word?) in, I have a basic character sketch of Allah as viewed by the speaker, a basic character sketch of the speaker as viewed by me, a reference to several undefined worlds and a reference to a special day of judgement. Because it is the only day mentioned, I reckon it's going to be pretty important in the pages to come. I'm curious how the Day of Judgement will be different from the day-to-day judgments Allah is said to make.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Section Addressed: Al-Faatiha
Topic: How to Use the Tafsir
Qur'an: http://quran-online.net/
Commentary: http://www.tafsir.com/Default.asp

Having read Al-Faatiha, I visited the tafsir, selected Al Fatiha, and clicked "Go".

The first link, "The Tafsir of Surat Al-Fatihah (Chapter 1)" leads to a page that says only a repeat of the link. "The Tafsir of Surat Al-Fatihah (Chapter 1)". The second link, "Which was revealed in Makkah", leads to a page that says, "Which was revealed in Makkah". What are these one-liners about? Also, is Makkah=Mecca? Is one the native word for the place?

The third link, "The Meaning of Al-Fatihah and its Various Names" leads to a page with a lot more text...and some Arabic (is that right?). Is the Arabic translated on this page and, if so, how do I tell? Also, how do I determine the source of the commentary?

This commentary is additionally confusing to me..."The prayer (i.e., Al-Fatihah) is divided into two halves between Me and My servants.' When the servant says, `All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of existence,' Allah says, 'My servant has praised Me.'" Where is the second half mentioned in the Tafsir? (What Allah says)

The fourth link, also "The Meaning of Al-Fatihah and its Various Names", leads to a page which includes the previous data, but with some new information added on the bottom. Why not just have link #4, and get rid of #3?

Clearly I'm a little confused as to how the Tafsir works. Any enlightenment in that area would be appreciated.

Thank you again for opening up this group reading to non-Muslims, and considering my (very basic and childish, I'm sure) questions. I'm curious to see where this study leads me.

Phanta
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#29 of 141 Old 01-13-2009, 12:53 AM
 
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Having read Al-Faatiha, I visited the tafsir, selected Al Fatiha, and clicked "Go".

The first link, "The Tafsir of Surat Al-Fatihah (Chapter 1)" leads to a page that says only a repeat of the link. "The Tafsir of Surat Al-Fatihah (Chapter 1)". The second link, "Which was revealed in Makkah", leads to a page that says, "Which was revealed in Makkah". What are these one-liners about? Also, is Makkah=Mecca? Is one the native word for the place?
The one liners are mostly just one of the idiosyncrasies of how the site is set up ... where something appears as a heading in the text, even if nothing follows, they give it its own page. Odd. And yeah, Makkah=Mecca ... for various reasons some prefer that manner of writing it in English letters. The revelation of the Quran was split between two cities with very different social/political climates, so notes are often given as to what was revealed where.

Quote:
The third link, "The Meaning of Al-Fatihah and its Various Names" leads to a page with a lot more text...and some Arabic (is that right?). Is the Arabic translated on this page and, if so, how do I tell? Also, how do I determine the source of the commentary?
It is arabic ... the translation thereof is what appears in the parenthesis immediately following. The source of the commentary ... I'm not sure if you mean the whole body of it, or specific things within it?

Quote:
This commentary is additionally confusing to me..."The prayer (i.e., Al-Fatihah) is divided into two halves between Me and My servants.' When the servant says, `All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of existence,' Allah says, 'My servant has praised Me.'" Where is the second half mentioned in the Tafsir? (What Allah says)
Wherever a quote is begun with something to the effect that "the Prophet said," it is something sources to the hadith -- the recorded sayings of the prophet as remembered by the Muslims alive in his own time. This particular example is mentioned again on the page titled "Al-Fatihah and the Prayer," where it is introduced with:

Quote:
Abu Hurayrah was asked, "[When] we stand behind the Imam'' He said, "Read it to yourself, for I heard the Messenger of Allah say, 'Allah, the Exalted, said, `I have divided the prayer ...
"Abu Hurayrah" is the name of one of the men alive in the prophet's time whose recollections are so recorded; whatever follows is what appears in the hadith collections. If something says it was recorded by Muslim, by Bukhari, by Tirmidhi, by An-Nasa'i (as in the example you gave), etc, those are the names of the individuals (yeah, I know the one named "Muslim" can get confusing) who collected and authenticated the sayings.

Does that make any sense? Basically what I mean is that the second half comes from something the prophet said himself which was later written down as something external to the Quran. Ibn Kathir relies primarily upon direct quotes of such for his commentary.

P.S. - Not childish at all. Ibn Kathir's tafsir was not really set up for people unfamiliar with the structure of Islamic texts and the structure of authority within Islamic texts ... I really wish I knew a commentary to recommend that was a bit more clear for beginners.

ETA: Just wanted to note, since it dawned on me that not everyone might realize, that the Quran is not printed in the order of revelation, so what appears on page one is not supposed to be the first words given by god to Muhammad. The actual order of revelation is pretty all over the map, and a fair portion of it is not really known at all. (The first revealed don't appear until chapter 96.)
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#30 of 141 Old 01-13-2009, 01:23 AM
 
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Salaams all mamas!!

I realized today that this is going to be challenging for me to post all my notes with my little one always needing mamas attention, but I am gonna do my best

A quick note to any non-Muslims reading the Qu'ran...
The Qu'ran was revealed directly to the Prophet Muhammad and is considered to be the exact words of God. This is different from the bible, for example, because the bible is considered to be "inspired by God, but written by man". I really recommend that everyone watch the movie "The Message" with Anthony Quinn because it does a great job giving a background of the time that the Qu'ran was reveled and makes it easier to understand some of the verses that were reveled directly to a certain group of people.

I found the first part of the movie on youtube... you might search around to see if you can find part 2 and 3... but at least part 1 is a start...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i56d-v3dzAA

my notes on al-Fatihah and beginning of al-Baqarah to come after i put my baby to sleep

I think, God willing, this is going to be a great forum! I am excited

Faiza married and with , mama to DS (09.23.08) and with #2 (due in June 2010).
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