Qur'anic Commentary The Qur'an

A Study of Two 20th-Cen­tu­ry Qur’an­ic Commentaries

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Asif Iqbal

There are pri­mar­i­ly two fac­tors that call for the inter­pre­ta­tion of the Qur’?nic rev­e­la­tion. First­ly it?s the Qur’?nic lan­guage. The lan­guage in which the Qur’?n was revealed was the high­est lev­el of the lit­er­ary lan­guage (Hochsprache) of the Clas­si­cal Ara­bic poet­ry. It is not the Ara­bic which the likes of Hariri, Mutan­ab­bi, Zamakhshari and Razi used in their works or the Ara­bic which is found these days in the news­pa­pers of Syr­ia and Egypt or that which emanates from the pen of the poets and writ­ers of these lands. No doubt these man­i­fes­ta­tions of the lan­guage are also Ara­bic, but the dif­fer­ence in the style and dic­tion of this Ara­bic and in that of the Qur’?nic Ara­bic, which can apt­ly be termed as the Clas­si­cal Ara­bic of the high­est lev­el, is some­thing like the dif­fer­ence in the lan­guage of Shake­speare or Mil­ton or Keats or Dick­ens and the lan­guage one finds these days in Newsweek or Time or the Econ­o­mist. The lit­er­a­ture of the Clas­si­cal Ara­bic, which is of real worth to the under­stand­ing of the Qur’?nic lan­guage, idiom, metaphor and hermeneu­tics, com­pris­es works of the Clas­si­cal poets as ?Imru al-Qays, Zuhayr, ?Amr Ibn Kulthum, Labid, Nabi­gah, Tar­fah, ?Antarah, A?sha and Harith Ibn Hal­iz­zah and elo­cu­tions of ora­tors as Quss Ibn Sa?idah. This under­tak­ing is ordi­nar­i­ly not pos­si­ble for a lay­man and he/​she must refer to authen­tic com­men­taries to get the need­ed help.

Sec­ond­ly it is the ever-increas­ing num­ber of sit­u­a­tions not dealt with in the pre­vi­ous lit­er­a­ture, which calls for de novo inter­pre­ta­tive works. For instance, issues like cloning, homo­sex­u­al­i­ty, genet­i­cal­ly-mod­i­fied food, Inter­net ethics, etc., all require an exten­sive inter­pre­ta­tion of the rel­e­vant Qur’?nic rev­e­la­tions for today?s Mus­lim community.

A fun­da­men­tal dif­fer­ence between the Chris­t­ian Bib­li­cal inter­pre­ta­tion and the Mus­lim Qur’?nic exe­ge­sis must be kept in mind : A Chris­t­ian Bib­li­cal inter­pre­ta­tor is essen­tial­ly a sen­su­al­ist and molds the scrip­tures as he/​she deems fit for him/​herself. For instance he/​she may total­ly skip the Old Tes­ta­ment food reg­u­la­tions (as if those repet­i­tive chap­ters and vers­es sim­ply do not exist at all in the Bible) or may not have scru­ples about choos­ing a can­di­date for a Church col­lege by vote instead of by a lot after the exam­ple of the Apos­tles (Acts 1:26). He/​she may be a Blue-Rib­bon­ist” despite the Old Testament?s fre­quent crav­ing for wine (e.g., Judges 9:13). It has to be born in mind that a gross over-step­ping of the scrip­ture of this sort is not pos­si­ble for a Muslim.

In the fol­low­ing I shall briefly men­tion two out­stand­ing and epoch-mak­ing Qur’?nic com­men­taries which, owing to their orig­i­nal work, had (and con­tin­ue to have) enor­mous impact on direct­ing the 20th cen­tu­ry Qur’?nic scholarship.

By Muham­mad Abduh (18491905) and his pupil Rashid Rida (18651935), which was pub­lished from Cairo (19541961) in 12 vol­umes, each approx­i­mate­ly 500 pages, cov­ers the 12/​30th of the Qur’?n.

The unique­ness in Abduh?s approach springs from the fresh empha­sis he puts on the Qur’?n as a source of spir­i­tu­al and world­ly guid­ance (“hidaya”). Abduh views the Qur’?n not pri­mar­i­ly the source of law or dog­mat­ics, or an occa­sion for philol­o­gists to dis­play their inge­nu­ity, but a book from which Mus­lims ought to derive guid­ance for this world and the next.

This approach of Abduh is illus­trat­ed by the fol­low­ing exam­ple : In Qur’?n, 2:58, God speaks to the Jews, under the lead­er­ship of Joshua, say­ing : Enter this town, and eat of the plen­ty there­in as ye wish ; but enter the gate with humility?”

Abduh writes on this verse : We shall not try to deter­mine which town is meant in this verse since the Qur’?n did not try to deter­mine this either. The impor­tance of this verse does not depend on the exact geo­graph­i­cal loca­tion of this town, but lies in the admo­ni­tion to thank­ful­ness towards the Almighty.” (Vol. I, p. 324)

Abduh?s approach to the Qur’?n is whol­ly ratio­nal­is­tic. He ren­ders the Qur’?nic term ?Furqan??? (Qur’?n, 3:3) as rea­son by which men dis­cern between right & wrong”.

In order to deter­mine the mean­ing of a cer­tain word or verse, Abduh makes ample use of its con­text rather than the rel­e­vant views expressed by pre­vi­ous schol­ars, and often gives a very sat­is­fac­to­ry expla­na­tion. Like­wise, Abduh does not rec­og­nize the rel­e­vance of the tra­di­tions, as was rec­og­nized by the pre­vi­ous schol­ars, in the Qur’?nic interpretation.[1]

By Ameen Ehsen Islahi (19041997, sub-con­ti­nent), pub­lished in Lahore in 9 volumes.

This mon­u­men­tal com­men­tary is indeed an orig­i­nal approach to the com­pre­hen­sion of the Qur’?n begun by Islahi?s teacher Hamid-ud-din Farahi (18631930, sub continent).

Islahi asserts that it?s incor­rect to say that the Qur’?n is a dis­joint­ed jum­ble of rev­e­la­tions and suc­cess­ful­ly estab­lish­es that the Qur’?n pos­sessed over­all struc­tur­al and the­mat­ic coher­ence (“nazm”).

He has pre­sent­ed con­clu­sive evi­dence that the Qur’?n is divid­ed into sev­en dis­crete groups. Each group has a dis­tinct theme. Every group begins with one or more Mec­can Surah and ends with one or more Med­i­nan Surah. In each group, the Mec­can Surahs always pre­cede the Med­i­nan ones. The rela­tion­ship between the Mec­can Surahs and Med­i­nan Surahs of each group is that of the root of a tree and its branch­es. In every group, all the phas­es of the Prophet?s mis­sion are depicted.

Two surahs of each group form a pair so that each mem­ber of the pair com­ple­ments the oth­er in var­i­ous ways. Surah 1, how­ev­er, is an excep­tion to this pat­tern : it is an intro­duc­tion to the whole of the Qur’?n as well as to the first group which begins with it. There are also some surahs which have a spe­cif­ic pur­pose and fall in this paired-surah scheme in a par­tic­u­lar way.

Each surah has spe­cif­ic addressees and a cen­tral theme round which the con­tents of the surah revolve. The cen­tral theme high­lights a par­tic­u­lar aspect of the cen­tral theme of the group of which the par­tic­u­lar surah is a part. Every surah has dis­tinct sub­sec­tions to mark the­mat­ic shifts, and every sub­sec­tion is para­graphed to mark small­er shifts.

Fol­low­ing is a brief descrip­tion of the sev­en Qur’?nic groups accord­ing to Islahi :

    Group I [Surah 1 — Surah 5]
    Cen­tral Theme : Islam­ic Law

    Group II [Surah 6 ? Surah 9
    Cen­tral Theme : The con­se­quences of deny­ing the Prophet(P) for the Mushrikin of Mecca

    Group III [Surah 10 — Surah 24
    Cen­tral Theme : Glad tid­ings of the Prophet?s domination.

    Group IV [Surah 25 — Surah 33
    Cen­tral Theme : Argu­ments on the Prophet­hood of Muhammad(P) and the require­ments of faith in him

    Group V [Surah 34 — Surah 49
    Cen­tral Theme : Argu­ments on the One­ness of God and the require­ments of faith in it

    Group VI [Surah 50 — Surah 66
    Cen­tral Theme : Argu­ments on the Day of Judg­ment and the require­ments of faith in it

    Group VII [Surah 67 — Surah 114
    Cen­tral Theme : Admo­ni­tion to the Quraysh about their fate in the Here­in and the Here­after if they deny the Prophet(P)

Islahi?s way of under­stand­ing the Qur’?nic coher­ence is being stud­ied and ana­lyzed by schol­ars of the sub-con­ti­nent and in Eng­land as well.[2]


[1] J. Jomi­er, Le Com­men­taire Coranique du Man­ar, Paris 1954

[2] Mus­tan­sir Mir, Coher­ence In The Qur’?n : A Study Of Islahi’s Con­cept Of Nazm In Tad­ab­bur-i-Qur’an, (Indi­anapo­lis : Amer­i­can Trust Pub­li­ca­tions, 1986)Endmark

1 Comment

  1. Tex­tu­al Analy­sis of the Qur’an*:
    Progress, Needs & Opportunities
    Ehsan Butt, PhD**, Pres­i­dent Daira Tad­ab­bur Canada
    Arthur John Arber­ry (1905?1969) a respect­ed and one of the most pro­lif­ic schol­ars of Ara­bic, and Islam­ic stud­ies, Head of the Depart­ment of Clas­sics at Cairo Uni­ver­si­ty in Egypt and Sir Thomas Adams’s Pro­fes­sor of Ara­bic at Cam­bridge Uni­ver­si­ty was unique in his real­iza­tion of a tex­tu­al har­mo­ny in the Qur’an. He stat­ed that he is wish­ing to show each Sura(chapter) as an artis­tic whole, its often incon­gru­ous parts con­sti­tut­ing a rich and admirable pattern“1. Arber­ry point­ed out the weak­ness­es in the method and gen­er­al approach of west­ern schol­ars towards under­stand­ing the Qur’an. He wrote the dis­ci­ples of the High­er Crit­i­cism, hav­ing watched with fas­ci­nat­ed admi­ra­tion how their mas­ters played hav­oc with the tra­di­tion­al sacro­sanc­ti­ty of the Bible, threw them­selves with brisk enthu­si­asm into the con­ge­nial task of demol­ish­ing the Koran”. Arber­ry then gives some exam­ples of the incon­clu­sive work of the promi­nent west­ern Quran­ic schol­ars and com­ments Such is the posi­tion which cham­pi­ons of the High­er Crit­i­cism of the Koran even­tu­al­ly reach. It is against this excess of anatom­i­cal minc­ing that I argue the uni­ty of the sura and the Koran;” ibid. Vol. 2, p 10, 12.

    The­mat­ic coher­ence and uni­ty of the Quran has recent­ly become more rec­og­nized after a num­ber of stud­ies pos­i­tive­ly iden­ti­fied it at almost all places where focus hap­pened to fall. A search for coher­ence takes direct ana­lyt­i­cal and open delib­er­a­tion approach that ini­tial­ly assumes that it was the same text that spell­bound all Ara­bia and its schol­ar’s con­tem­po­rary to Prophet Moham­mad, why not ? All ear­li­est to mod­ern Mus­lim Quran­ic exegetes believe in an inher­ent the­mat­ic uni­ty and deep­er orga­ni­za­tion, they call, Nazm. How­ev­er it has been scarce­ly explic­it­ly explained in the Mus­lim lit­er­a­ture if ever to any sat­is­fac­to­ry lev­el. Mod­ern schol­ars of Quran­ic tex­tu­al stud­ies focused on its explo­ry and were very suc­cess­ful. Numer­ous stud­ies describe a design in Quran that how every word, verse and sura seems to be embed­ded in a mean­ing­ful struc­ture e.g. series of minor top­ics devel­op into a com­pelling major theme which makes a per­fect match with oth­er local and glob­al major themes. The Nazm, can thus be tak­en as the con­text and rela­tion­ship among top­ics of dif­fer­ent parts which high­lights sev­er­al aspects of the mean­ing of a part with the help of anoth­er. Mus­lim schol­ars of all ages have been unan­i­mous that the true mean­ing of the Quran­ic text must be com­plete­ly con­sis­tent with not only the local con­text but also the Qur?n as a whole. Inci­den­tal­ly the Nazm, which helps deter­mine the true mean­ing, also unrav­els the beau­ties of expres­sion con­cealed in the text.

    Many schol­ars worked on the ideas sim­i­lar to Arber­ry’s and con­clud­ed effec­tive­ness of tex­tu­al analy­sis in dis­cov­er­ing con­sis­tent the­mat­ic inter­re­la­tion­ships. How­ev­er the two schol­ars of South East Asia par­tic­u­lar­ly pro­duced most exhaus­tive works focused on the tex­tu­al analy­sis of the Qur’an. They are Farahi(1863 – 1930) a renowned schol­ar of Ara­bic and Islam who pro­mot­ed sim­i­lar stud­ies of the text of the Qur’an and his famous stu­dent Amin Ahsan Islahi(1904 – 1997) who con­tin­ued Farahi’s inves­ti­ga­tions. Their volu­mi­nous works describe how they arrive at their pos­tu­lates about the pre­cise theme of a par­tic­u­lar sura and how the theme beau­ti­ful­ly unites all con­tents of the sura ren­der­ing it as a series of well focused lit­er­ary dia­logues. Islahi com­plet­ed a full com­men­tary of Qur’an explain­ing the basis of his exeget­i­cal prin­ci­ples, meth­ods and results. Many schol­ars who have reviewed his works agree that he is amaz­ing­ly suc­cess­ful in expos­ing the hid­den sys­tem of themes. He aims to show how every Sura of the Quran is char­ac­ter­is­ti­cal­ly a focused the­sis ham­mer­ing a point of wis­dom with the fla­vor of some super Ara­bic Ode(Moallaqa). The work of both schol­ars cov­ers around 100 years of con­tin­u­ous aca­d­e­m­ic research. Islahi believes that the prin­ci­ples elab­o­rat­ed by him in his com­men­tary are sci­en­tif­ic, ratio­nal, and based on com­mon sense, with­out which the true mes­sage and beau­ty of the Qur’an can­not be under­stood or appre­ci­at­ed. For Eng­lish read­ers an intro­duc­tion to the Farahi and Islahi work is includ­ed in the Ph.D. thesis2 of Mus­tan­sir Mir with Pro­fes­sor James A. Bel­lamy at Uni­ver­si­ty of Michi­gan, Ann Arbor as super­vi­sors. The the­sis con­clud­ed : ?Islahi has con­vinc­ing­ly shown.., that the Qur?an has design and method. He has shown that indi­vid­ual surahs revolve around spe­cif­ic cen­tral themes, an essen­tial com­ple­men­tary nature exists between mem­bers of the pairs of surahs, and that larg­er set of surahs, he calls groups, dis­play iden­ti­fi­able pat­terns of nazm. A study of Tadabbur‑I Qur?an is bound to leave one with the impres­sion that, con­trary to the usu­al­ly held view, the Qur?an is a well ordered book?. Oth­er major sources on con­tri­bu­tions of Farahi & Islahi works in Eng­lish lan­guage include Pro­fes­sor Neal Robin­son’s work Dis­cov­er­ing The Qur?n“3 and a vol­ume of Islahi’s work trans­lat­ed in to English4. How­ev­er a vast major­i­ty of their work still remains un-trans­lat­ed in Urdu or Ara­bic. Most unfor­tu­nate­ly, now after them there seem to be no major ini­tia­tives in the aca­d­e­m­ic cir­cles of the world to keep this knowl­edge alive. Rather there are sev­er­al exam­ples that due to the all per­va­sive igno­rance about their work some peo­ple begin in this field and start rein­vent­ing the wheel.

    The sig­nif­i­cance of the tex­tu­al analy­sis, that nat­u­ral­ly aids build­ing aca­d­e­m­ic con­sen­sus on the Quran­ic inter­pre­ta­tions, can not be overestimated.
    An empa­thet­ic atten­tion to Qur’an­ic stud­ies, which is the first prin­ci­pal in Quran­ic tex­tu­al stud­ies, in main­stream west­ern edu­ca­tion­al sys­tems will send clear sig­nals in the media and the hearts of Mus­lim coun­tries effec­tive­ly coun­ter­ing notions of the clash of civilizations.
    A wider access to edu­ca­tion in the tex­tu­al analy­sis of the Qur?an, which in a sense takes it as an impor­tant human her­itage can also pro­vide an oppor­tu­ni­ty for an on-going mul­ti­cul­tur­al com­mu­ni­ca­tion. There is a cru­cial need for such com­mu­ni­ca­tions to elim­i­nate count­less poten­tial risks of local and glob­al con­flicts aris­ing from inter­pre­ta­tions of the Qur’an where they orig­i­nate from cir­cles of vest­ed inter­ests as against schol­ar­ly inves­ti­ga­tions for seek­ing the truth. Any­body hav­ing doubts about the increased mul­ti­cul­tur­al har­mo­ny that can be real­ized from more deep­er & coher­ent under­stand­ing of the book must remem­ber two things
     ; One, that it is a con­sen­sus view of Mus­lims that dur­ing the time of the past glo­ries of Mus­lim civ­i­liza­tion they had a bet­ter aware­ness of the orig­i­nal mes­sage of the Qur’an than they have today. Two, the his­tor­i­cal accounts abun­dant­ly con­firm that the past Mus­lim civ­i­liza­tion with a bet­ter mass edu­ca­tion on the Qur’an at its zenith demon­strat­ed the high­est degree of cul­ture and reli­gious tol­er­a­tion. Recent­ly Gary Brown5 brought to light some pecu­liar instances. E.g. he men­tioned that the Mus­lim pol­i­cy of tol­er­a­tion and the per­sis­tent intol­er­ance of many Chris­t­ian fac­tions had impor­tant con­se­quences, strik­ing­ly illus­trat­ed by the words of no less a per­son­age than the Ortho­dox Patri­arch of Con­stan­tino­ple, around 1173. Address­ing the Byzan­tine Mutu­al Mis­per­cep­tions : The His­tor­i­cal Con­text of Mus­lim-West­ern Rela­tions Emper­or Manuel I, who was con­tem­plat­ing a reli­gious union with the west­ern Church of Rome, the Patri­arch said : ?Let the Mus­lim be my mas­ter in out­ward things rather than the Latin dom­i­nate me in mat­ters of the spir­it. For if I am sub­ject to the Mus­lim, at least he will not force me to share his faith. But if I have to be … unit­ed with the [Latin] Roman Church, I may have to sep­a­rate myself from my God.?

    The above pro­vides enough evi­dence to estab­lish a case for pro­mot­ing edu­ca­tion and stud­ies relat­ing to the tex­tu­al analy­sis of the Qur?an. The aca­d­e­m­ic exer­cise could great­ly help answer­ing many ques­tions about how Qur?n played its con­struc­tive role in the his­tor­i­cal devel­op­ment of first Islam­ic com­mu­ni­ties and lat­er dur­ing glob­al Islam­ic civ­i­liza­tion. In addi­tion such stud­ies can pro­vide some more tan­gi­ble and cur­rent ben­e­fits. For instance, a wider access to edu­ca­tion about Qur’an­ic inter­pre­ta­tion based on prin­ci­ples of tex­tu­al coher­ence and exam­i­na­tions of con­texts can pro­vide Mus­lims qual­i­ty edu­ca­tion about their her­itage and an alter­na­tive to the sep­a­rate Islam­ic insti­tutes that most­ly run to per­pet­u­ate Mus­lim sec­tar­i­an Madras­sa beliefs and by the same people.
    Some Activ­i­ties To Pro­mote Aware­ness and Stud­ies about Tex­tu­al Analy­sis of the Qur?an :

    ? Intro­duc­tion to the tex­tu­al analy­sis approach, its meth­ods, results in com­par­i­son with tra­di­tion­al and mod­ern modes of Quran­ic interpretation
     ? Crit­i­cal analy­sis of Farahi-Islahi works
     ? Tex­tu­al stud­ies focused on leg­isla­tive Quran­ic verses
    Com­par­a­tive study of Quran­ic his­tor­i­cal accounts with oth­er his­tor­i­cal & arche­o­log­i­cal resources e.g Bib­li­cal. The author has been work­ing on the tex­tu­al analy­sis of Quran­ic vers­es relat­ing to the his­to­ry of Bani Israel, chil­dren of Israel.

    Edu­ca­tion relat­ing to tex­tu­al analy­sis of Quran can take dif­fer­ent forms :
    ? can be includ­ed as a part, or a project in the reg­u­lar cours­es where relevant
     ? At sep­a­rate reg­u­lar course lev­el, where oppor­tu­ni­ties exist
     ? As a con­tin­u­ing edu­ca­tion course
     ? As a mas­ters or PhD stud­ies top­ic, for some thor­ough and fresh crit­i­cal exam­i­na­tion of pre­vi­ous works and mak­ing fur­ther progress
    This author has been deliv­er­ing 60 – 90 min­utes sem­i­nars with Q&A ses­sions aimed at expos­ing the coher­ence, orga­ni­za­tion of themes dis­cov­ered in the first sura, Fati­ha, of Quran. Intri­cate tex­tu­al struc­tures in Fati­ha car­ry themes of high­er morals, his­tor­i­cal nature, wis­dom and philo­soph­i­cal con­no­ta­tions, which are so sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly arranged, that they not only cre­ate a lit­er­ary mas­ter­piece but also a com­pelling moti­va­tion­al effect.
    **Ehsan Butt, PhD, Pres­i­dent Daira Tad­ab­bur Cana­da, Tel : 905 919 9930, ehsan.​tadabbur@​gmail.​com
    References :
    * The text ver­sion con­sid­ered here is the one that 99.999999% of mus­lims use for read­ing and 100% use for learn­ing by heart. This ver­sion was pre­vi­ous­ly known as Qirat­ul Aam­ma, or Mushaf ul Umma in e.g in ear­ly Tafseer lit­er­a­ture and Bukhari, and was con­sid­ered trans­mit­ted by whole mus­lim ummah and nev­er asso­ci­at­ed with any one per­son. It is a rel­a­tive­ly recent phe­nom­e­na that some peo­ple start­ed to asso­ciate it with some­body Hafs Bin Asim. This actu­al­ly goes against the con­sen­sus view of Twatar in Quran trans­mis­sion and reduces it to a mere sin­gle report, Khabri-Wahid. Khabri-Wahid is a type of report­ed tra­di­tion which at any time was only known to one sin­gle reporter. Khabri Wahid is con­sid­ered a weak report.
    1 The Koran Inter­pret­ed, Trans­la­tion of Qur’an, Touch­stone, Rock­e­feller Cen­ter, 1230 Avenue of Amer­i­c­as, New York, NY 10020, ISBN 06848250, Vol.125 (1996)

    2 Coher­ence in the Qur’an : A Study of Islahi’s Con­cept of Nazm in Tadabbur‑i Qur’an by Mus­tan­sir Mir , Amer­i­can Trust Pub­li­ca­tions, 125

    3 Dis­cov­er­ing the Quran : A Con­tem­po­rary Approach to a Veiled Text by Neal Robin­son, Pub­lish­er : George­town Uni­ver­si­ty Press ; 2 edi­tion (Feb­ru­ary 28, 2004) Eng­lish, ISBN-13 : 978 – 1589010246

    4 TADABBUR-E-QUR’AN — PONDERING OVER THE QURAN by Amin Ahsan Islahi, trans­lat­ed in Eng­lish by Moham­mad Saleem Kayani http://​www​.ibt​books​.com/

    5 Mutu­al Mis­per­cep­tions : The His­tor­i­cal Con­text of Mus­lim-West­ern Rela­tions, by Gary Brown, Depart­ment of the Par­lia­men­tary Library, Com­mon­wealth of Aus­tralia, Cur­rent Issues Brief No. 7 2001?02, For­eign Affairs, ISSN 1440 – 2009 (http://​www​.aph​.gov​.au/​l​i​b​r​a​r​y​/​p​u​b​s​/​C​I​B​/​2001 – 02/02cib07.pdf)

    Ehsan Butt, PhD

    Pres­i­dent, Daira Tadabbur
    2041970− Fowler Dri­ve, Mis­sis­sauga, ON L5K 1B5, Canada
    Tel : 905 919 9930, Fax : 905 403 9548 ehsanb@​qlic.​ca

    Ehsan stud­ied at the Idara-i-Tadabbur-i-Qur?an-u-Hadith Lahore, Pak­istan which was found­ed by Amin Ahasan Islahi. The Idara was estab­lished to pro­mote aware­ness about the meth­ods and dis­cov­er­ies relat­ed to their ben­e­fi­cial tex­tu­al inves­ti­ga­tions. It remained the cen­tre of Islahi’s intel­lec­tu­al activ­i­ties until his death (15th Decem­ber 1997).

    Ehsan stud­ied Ara­bic gram­mar, lit­er­a­ture, styles of Quran, Farahi & Islahi’s dis­cov­er­ies on the­mat­ic rela­tion­ships, Meth­ods of Quran­ic tex­tu­al analy­sis, Inter­pre­ta­tion of the Quran using the tex­tu­al analy­sis method, Hadith Sahih Mus­lim, Buthari and Muat­ta Imam Malik, select­ed Pre-Islam­ic poet­ry : Hamasa Abu-Tamam and crit­i­cal analy­sis of the stands of major philo­soph­i­cal schools. Alla­ma Khalid Masud (1935 ? 2003) who was Islahi’s most famous stu­dent con­tributed in man­age­ment of Idara. Khalid relieved Islahi from teach­ing new stu­dents. Ehsan learned most of the sub­jects from Alla­ma Khalid Masud. Ehsan took spe­cial inter­est in learn­ing the skill of iden­ti­fy­ing the the­mat­ic sys­tems of ayats with­in Suras and suras with­in the Quran as a whole.

    He remained a reg­u­lar par­tic­i­pant in lec­tures, dis­cus­sions meet­ings with Amin Ahsan Islahi for sev­er­al years. Being a found­ing mem­ber he par­tic­i­pat­ed in the meet­ings of Idara-i-Tadabbur-i-Qur?an-u-Hadith. His Urdu lan­guage pro­fi­cien­cy afford­ed him the study of almost all Islahi books. After­wards he :

    ? Taught Ara­bic gram­mar cours­es, and selec­tions of Tafseer elu­ci­dat­ing meth­ods of iden­ti­fy­ing the­mat­ic systems
     ? Offered Sem­i­nars on selec­tions of Islahi?s Tafseer, Tadabbur
     ? Con­tributed in the series pub­li­ca­tion, Tad­ab­bur, Urdu pub­lished by Idara Tad­ab­bur-i-Quran o Hadith under the patran­age of Amin Ahasan Islahi
     ? Trans­lat­ed in Eng­lish selec­tions from Urdu works of Amin Ahsan Islahi
     ? Estab­lished Dairatad­ab­bur Cana­da and cur­rent­ly teach­ing Ara­bic gram­mar and Tafseer, Tad­ab­babur i Quran based on Coher­ence in the Quran.

    ? Study ses­sions for Farahi?s Ara­bic works and Ara­bic poet­ry , Moallaqat

    ? For two new books ?Quran­ic His­to­ry and The­mat­ic Struc­ture ? and How Quran Cre­at­ed Our Mod­ern World“continuing to col­lect mate­r­i­al, its study, analy­sis and draft writing

    ? Man­ag­er of web group Sci­en­tif­ic Reli­gion http://​groups​.msn​.com/​s​c​i​e​n​t​i​f​i​c​r​e​l​i​g​ion which has about 200 members

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