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 Post subject: Did 2:144 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 06 Jan 2010, 07:25 
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Here are the two verses for reference:


is claimed to have been abrogated by


The case for abrogation of verse 2:115 is pretty weak. Here is a translation of 2:115 and of 2:144 (the verse that is claimed to abrogate it):

{2:115} And to God belongs the east and the west. So wherever you [might] turn, there is the Face of God. Indeed, God is all-encompassing and knowing.

{2:144} We have certainly seen the turning of your face, [O Mohammad], toward the heaven, and We will surely turn you to a qiblah (prayer direction) with which you will be pleased. So turn your face toward al-Masjid al-Haram (the Grand Mosque in Mecca). And wherever you [believers] are, turn your faces toward it. Indeed, those who have been given the scripture well know that it is the truth from their Lord. And God is not unaware of what they do.

The "case" for abrogation is that verse 2:144 fixed the qibla direction to al-Masjid al-Haram in Mecca, while verse 2:115 seems to allow all directions. Well, verse 2:115 does not address the qibla direction in the first place. It states that God is present everywhere. This is a statement of fact, not a command related to the qibla direction or anything else.

Moreover, a common interpretation of 2:115 is that it justifies (rather than contradicts) the command in 2:144. The qibla direction had been towards the Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem before (though that had not been decreed through a verse in the Quran, so there is no abrogated verse in that regard either), and the change to Mecca caused the usual enemies of Islam to raise doubts about the religion because of this change, so verse 2:115 came to make it clear that fixing one qibla direction or another has nothing to do with a physical location for God. It has to do with obeying a command from God. Following this command proved over time to be one of the most notable symbols of unity and belonging among the Moslems all over the world.

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 Post subject: Did 2:144 and 2:150 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 08 Jan 2010, 16:41 
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I wrote this before remembering that Pragmatic already addressed it.

This case has to do with the Qibla direction. Scholars have said that 2:115 allowed prayer in any direction but that has been abrogated by 2:144 and 2:150 which allow prayer only in the direction of the Sacrosanct Mosque in Mecca. Here are the verses,


is claimed to have been abrogated by

which is emphasized by


The claim of abrogation is shattered as soon as one learns the circumstances of revelation (أسباب النزول). The circumstances of revelation of 2:115 were for the traveler at night who had no way of knowing where the sun is and thus could not determine the direction of Mecca. 2:115 therefore gave permission to pray, said the scholars, in whichever direction the worshiper thinks is correct.

However, this tidbit of information isn't even necessary to refute the abrogation case, because there is no mandate in 2:115; it's a statement of fact: That God's Face is everywhere. If there is no mandate, there is nothing to abrogate. Pardon the rhyme! :)

2:144 mentions the word "Qibla" for the first time, making it clear that it is talking about prayer, while 2:115 doesn't necessarily. 2:144 and especially 2:150 make it clear that the Qibla direction must also be observed while traveling. Is that in conflict with the statement that "wherever you turn there is the Face of God"? Obviously not. Therefore, there is no abrogation case here. What we do know was abrogated is not in the Quran: that the Qibla direction used to be Jerusalem. There is no verse about that, only hadeeths.

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 Post subject: Who said what?
PostPosted: 31 Jan 2010, 01:00 
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For:
Ibn Abbaas, Ikrima, Abul`Aaliya and Al-Hasan (who all said that the abrogated was the Prophet's own decision of facing Jerusalem),
Qataada, As-Suddi,
Abdur-Rahmaan ibn Zayd (according to Shu`la),
Maalik and his fellows (according to Makki),
Abdullah ibn Al-Husayn ibn Al-Qaasim (quoted by Aş-Şa`di),
Makki,
Ibn Hazm Al-Andalusi,
Ibn Salaama,
Al-Baarizi,
Abu-Bakr Al-Hamdaani,
As-Suyooti.

Against:
The majority (according to Shu`la),
Mujaahid and Ad-Dhahhaak (who said that 2:115 abrogated the practice of the Prophet in facing Jerusalem),
At-Tabari,
Al-Asfahaani,
An-Nahhaas,
Ibn Al-Jawzi,
Judge Ibn Al`Arabi,
Ibn Al-Qayyim (implied),
Az-Zurqaani,
Muhammad Al-Khudhari (Bek),
Dr. Mustafa Zayd,
Ali Hasan Al-Areedh,
Dr. Ahmad Hijaazi As-Saqqa,
M. M. Nada,
Dr. Az-Zalmi,
Dr. Muhammad Saalih Ali Mustafa,
Husaam Al-Ghaali,
Ihab Hasan Abduh,
Jamaal `Ataaya,
Dr. Mannaa' Al-Qattaan, in his book مباحث في علوم القرآن, page 235.

Unclear:
Abu-Abdillah Shu`la (implication is that he rejects the claim).

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 Post subject: Re: Did 2:144 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 23 Apr 2010, 05:49 
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Ali Hasan Al-Areedh, in his book فتح المنان في نسخ القرآن, agrees that 2:115 was not abrogated. However, his argument for refuting it is the essence of abrogation! Here is a translation of what he wrote,
"All horizons are for God. He, may He be sanctified, is not in any of them. There is no direction per se to Him. Thus, He may command His worshipers to face any direction during prayer, then redirect them to another direction. There is no contradiction, and when there is no contradiction, there is no abrogation."

I cannot follow his logic. What he says in the above quote is what abrogation is! But he concludes it's not. I already explained above why this not an abrogation: 2:115 contains no command to abrogate. To abrogate it is to say that its statement is longer valid. God forbid.

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 Post subject: Re: Did 2:144 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 23 Apr 2010, 06:13 
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Linguistic wrote:
Ali Hasan Al-Areedh, in his book فتح المنان في نسخ القرآن, agrees that 2:115 was not abrogated. However, his argument for refuting it is the essence of abrogation!

I am not ready to issue a verdict on Al-Jabri's book yet, but I am not optimistic. Too legalistic and also too dismissive of other views. The reason I am mentioning this here is that I would be hard pressed to name a book about abrogation, from any part of the spectrum of views, that I am impressed by. Zaid's book is the best so far, and it shows fantastic scholarship, but it has stunning glitches in key issues.

Maybe Al-Zalmi's book will save the day if and when we get it.

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 Post subject: Re: Did 2:144 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 30 Apr 2010, 06:10 
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Dr. Ahmad Hijaazi As-Saqqa, in his book لانسخ في القرآن, page 48, contends that the context of 2:115 is about the Jews and the Christians; they were not mandated to face any particular direction in their prayers. 2:114, on the other hand, speaks of Muslims only and therefore there is no cause to claim abrogation.

This is a reasonable alternative interpretation, supported by the context, and adds credence to the other arguments above against abrogation.

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 Post subject: Re: Did 2:144 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 19 May 2010, 04:17 
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Pragmatic wrote:
Moreover, a common interpretation of 2:115 is that it justifies (rather than contradicts) the command in 2:144. The qibla direction had been towards the Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem before (though that had not been decreed through a verse in the Quran, so there is no abrogated verse in that regard either), and the change to Mecca caused the usual enemies of Islam to raise doubts about the religion because of this change, so verse 2:115 came to make it clear that fixing one qibla direction or another has nothing to do with a physical location for God.

This is the view of Sayyed Qotb, as quoted by Nada in his his book. Nada quotes on pages 83-85 narrations that the circumstance of revelation of 2:115 was the negative reaction of the Jews when the qibla was switched away from Jerusalem, and Qotb elaborates further that they raised doubt about the validity of past prayers of Muslims towards Jerusalem after 2:144 was revealed mandating the direction of Mecca for prayers, hence 2:115 came as a reassurance.

One point of interest is that these narrations and opinions would indicate that 2:115 was revealed after 2:144 (given that the circumstance of revelation of 2:115 was a reaction to 2:144). This by itself would decidedly negate the abrogation case, but I haven't seen this argument anywhere nor have I seen a specific statement about the order of revelation between the two verses.

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 Post subject: Re: Did 2:144 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 28 May 2010, 04:40 
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Dr. Az-Zalmi, in his book التبيان لرفع غموض النسخ في القرآن, pages 115-116, refutes this claim by saying that the provision of 2:115 remains valid for whomever cannot determine the Qibla direction or is on a vehicle that keeps changing direction. True.

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 Post subject: Re: Did 2:144 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 28 May 2010, 05:02 
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Linguistic wrote:
Dr. Az-Zalmi, in his book التبيان لرفع غموض النسخ في القرآن, pages 115-116, refutes this claim by saying that the provision of 2:115 remains valid for whomever cannot determine the Qibla direction or is on a vehicle that keeps changing direction. True.

Cute!

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 Post subject: Re: Did 2:144 abrogate 2:115?
PostPosted: 15 Jun 2010, 03:34 
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Al-Ghaali, in his book بالحجة والبرهان لا نسخ في القرآن, pages 51-55, discusses and refutes this claim. He adds more information to what has already been mentioned in the above posts:

  • Mujaahid and Ad-Dhahhaak said that 2:115 means that anywhere you go, face Mecca in prayer. Their view is that 2:115 abrogated the Sunna.
  • Muqaatil ibn Sulaymaan in his exegesis said that 2:115 means that one can face any direction when he cannot tell which direction is Mecca. Agreeing with that view were Sa`eed ibn Al-Musayyib, Mujaahid, `Ataa', Ash-Sha`bi, Ibrahim An-Nakh`i, Abu-Haneefa, Ash-Shaafi`i (in one report) and Maalik.
  • Al-Hasan, Mujaahid, Ad-Dhahhaak and Ar-Raazi said that the circumstances of revelation of

    were that people asked, "where do we call upon God?" Then 2:115 was revealed to give the answer.
  • Al-Ghaali says that that 2:115 lets Muslims know that prayer is not confined to special places like synagogues and churches, but can be done anywhere.
  • Ibn Umar, An-Nakh`i and An-Nahhaas said that 2:115 is about prayer while traveling; it can be done toward any direction. Al-Ghaali confirms with a hadeeth in Al-Bukhaari compilation, narrated by Jaabir, that the Prophet (PBUH) used to pray voluntary prayers on his camel, but for mandatory prayers, he disembarked and prayed facing Mecca.

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