Channel: Hamza Yusuf
Series: Hamza Yusuf – Vision Of Islam
You weren't created to serve Pharaoh. You weren't created just to make money. You weren't created to exploit. You were created to worship Allah subhana wa Tada. Now, the Pharaonic model uses manipulation of nature. And that's why when they threw down their sticks, they look like snakes. Whereas what the prophetic model is, it's truth. It's not illusion, when it shows its hand, it gobbles up the falsehood. And that's why they don't like the two to be together. They like to make sure that that element does not is not allowed any type of mass audience, because if it is, it becomes very dangerous. So that is one of the most important elements in the Quran is this model and
that's why the Pharaoh and Moosa or Moses is the most important story in the Quran, it's repeated more than any other story. Each time it comes in the Quran, it has nuances, because ultimately, that is the human conflict is between a control model, which is about getting the creation to submit to creatures they want you to submit to higher creatures. And the assignment model is that you don't submit to creatures you submit to the Creator.
So these are in opposition. So that's one element of the Quran. So there are many different aspects of the Quran. But the legislative aspect is really
it is not the major portion of the Quran, from the Hadith now, which are the sayings of the prophets a lot is
one of the really interesting things for me, as somebody that learned Arabic and can read both the Quran and the Hadith is that they're completely different. Anybody who's well trained in Arabic will immediately recognize the Quran even if he doesn't memorize the Quran because it has a unique quality to it that is different from other Arabic speech. Even poets great poets. Great. What they call Bulava, the rhetoricians, the orators, when you read their speeches, you know, it's not caught on even if you don't memorize the Quran, the Quran has a very, I would call it mysterious because it is a mysterious component. It is very different from other speech, and that's what the Quran says.
It is not like other speech, the Quranic challenge is to imitate the Quran. And in 1400 years, nobody's ever done it. And there have been people that attempted this, there's no doubt there were attempts. Now, what happens with language?
Is that because language is such a strange phenomenon in the world, for instance, if I say john came yesterday, if you read that, you would not see intonation. Now I could say, john came yesterday, I could say john came yesterday, same words, and I've gone from a declarative sentence to it could be either one of two, add job or surprise, or it could be an interrogative. I'm really asking a question asking for affirmation. So language, even though you're using the same words, they can be interpreted in different ways. intonation is one of the ways. Another is the context. That's why you asked him, in what context Did he say that? Because somebody could be quoting somebody.
So did you know someone so said that all such and such or such and such, in what context? Was he saying,
he could have said before he said it that some people say, so knowing things in context, and that's one of the things the poron people take verses out of context. And if you have a problem, another thing is when you have a text that declares itself holistic, the Quran says to me, no, no be bothered. keytab but took furono Viva, do you believe in a portion of the book and you reject other portions? So the book itself is saying, this is a holistic book. So if you have a verse in the Quran, it says, arcturion machinery keen, hated, we should to move on, kill the policies wherever you find them. You have to look, what does the other parts of the book have to say? Is that a
specific verse? Is it makaya? Is it more houses? Is that the house? Is it a general versus specific verse? Was it certain circumstances even set up a shorter forum, when the months pass is what precedes it? So what what was it talking about? Oh, when we look in the Tafseer, it was about a specific treaty that was made. It was broken by a group of machinery keen, and then the province licen was commanded to give them
Have a period of time to make Toba if they still didn't make Toba then declare war on them. So now we have a different understanding. And yet it's the same verses. Now there's another verse in the Quran, where God says lane Hackman led in lm Yokai to confer Dini, when you come in the argument of
God does not prohibit you from being kind, and generous, and giving you a portion of your money to non believers, who don't oppose you in your religion, and who don't chase you out of your homes. So here's another, it took me a while to get that what took hold on it? Do you just believe in one portion and reject another portion? There's other verses in the Quran that say that these people are ignorant people, so explain to them before you do anything. I mean, this is the Quran is a holistic book, and to take it out of its context, take it out is wrong. So the Hadith and the Quran are open to interpretation. Now, who decides who can interpret there is a book one of the things that in
Protestant Christianity, one of the big splits between the Protestants and the Catholics was over who had textual authority. In other words, who can interpret the Bible. According to the Catholics, only the church has the authority to interpret the Bible. And according to the Protestants know, the Bible should be open to the church of believers. And this is why the Catholic Church is basically one organization. And after the Protestant Reformation, there are hundreds, if not 1000s, of different Christian sects, because everybody had a different interpretation. So the anabaptist said, No, you don't baptize the Baptist said, You baptize, and on and on. So you get all these different,
the Methodist said, here's the methods you have to follow in order to be right guided, and the Anglicans said you had to believe in the authority of the British Crown, as defender of faith, on and on and on. I mean, it's very interesting. So each Christian sec began to interpret according to what they Calvin, for instance, very clear prohibitions of usury. In the Bible. Calvin said, that's not that doesn't include interest. See, that really means exorbitant interest, which is user it. So who decides what's exorbitant what's not, let's say 11%.
That so that was considered exorbitant that if you went if you charge somebody 12%, well, now 19% is what your average people if you're prime, one of these gold card people, they might give you 9.2. And now because the economy is collapsing, they're giving you zero for a year or whatever, right? Because they just want you to spend, because the same corporations that give you the cards, own all the stores, so they just want you to, to spend. So that's the point about the nature of who decides who interprets because you can go into inner cities, and there are pawn shops that charge 30% interest 30%. And this even worse than that, and there's laws against usury, still in this country.
And in Europe, there are laws against usury, but they define it as exorbitant. So who defines it, it becomes arbitrary. And this is the nature of interpretation. If you read which it's worth reading, just as a book if you're interested in religion, and in what they call hermeneutics or heuristic models for interpretation, a useful book is on Christian doctrine by a St. Agustin. And it is a book that he wrote, it's basically the old soul of the Christians. It's a book that he wrote to give people guidelines for how to interpret the Bible. And he talks about knowing whether a verses specific or if it's General, and this is for century, it's before Islam. He also said you have to
know the liberal arts you have to know grammar, you have to know dialectic, yet no rhetoric, you have to understand how to read before you could look into the Bible. So the Catholics had this idea that you have to be educated Well, the Muslims have a similar understanding. So we are closer to the Catholics if you want to a Christian analogy, the Sunni Muslims and also the Shia actually are closer to the Catholic understanding that you do need an authoritative body
to interpret the Koran in the Catholic tradition. It's the Cardinals and, and the people who have reached that level of knowledge and are sanctioned by the church to interpret scripture. For the Muslims These are called the ulama. These are called the scholars or the inheritors of the Prophet. There are basically two criteria traditionally, that Muslims used one was sound knowledge, and the other was piety that the person actually acted upon.
According to their knowledge, the later scholars loosened up the second part because people were losing their piety. And so they said that it was still permissible to take from somebody if the knowledge was sound, even if they were not living up to that knowledge, but generally about fatwa, they said that it was always better to look for the most righteous person, as well as the most knowledgeable to take a fatwa. And that's why at alpha body we're reading that yesterday. He says we as an owner,
under the need to be Runa. Sen. Navy's allies, he asked the scholars who follow the Sunnah of the prophets Eliza them so they act according to their knowledge. The prophets lie Sam for 23 years was speaking. Now he was not a man of many words, he did not speak often, nor did he speak, without some purpose. Even if that purpose was making a little child happy. He still had a purpose to his speech, he did not speak just to speak, which many of us do if you're in a group of people, if there's silence, people start feeling a little uncomfortable, they want somebody else to say something, the province alized them there were times when they literally just sat and nothing was said he spoke
with purpose and intention. And for that reason, he did not say a lot and his Hadees even though that there are literally hundreds of 1000s of chains of transmission, there are actually not a great number of had these a moment Buhari has just over 7000 handy. But if you actually remove the repeated had these, it's just over 4000. So most of us say almost that in a day.
That's why even medic once somebody asked him about suicide, he said he's a good man, but he has a month's worth of talk in a day.
He said, Roger, no, you can no more kurama Yeoman Sharon fionn.
Good man. But you know, it's a nice way of saying he talks too much.
The more above EMA medic, which is a good number of the Hadees in there are actually not sayings of the Prophet slicin but sayings of other people in my medic took that from 40,000 narrations he honed it down to 1721 I think he took what he felt was the bare essentials of the tradition. So the province of light isms Hadeeth of the Hadees that relate to legislation, there are only a few 100. And most of them are in a book called Bulova moron, which is a famous book on the Hadees that relate to legislation. When you get into serious books of phip, what you will find is that the Delete deals begin to disappear from the Hadith in the second half of phip. There's a lot of details for what are
called very bad at but when you get into the more Ahmed at that event that are things that relate to worship, Mama that are things that relate to financial transactions to all these different things. You start seeing in the books that have done deals or proofs from the Quran or the Hadith, that suddenly they're not forthcoming because they begin to use analytical reasoning.