There is a perception that Islam is the glorification of Arabs and their culture and customs.
Well, it is not.
It is neither Arabism nor worship of Arabs.
Never once does the Noble Word exhort its reciters to follow the Arabs and their manner of living.
The Noble Quran makes a clear and decisive distinction between the dynamics of language and race. The former cuts through racial, ethnic, tribal, and national differences. However, the latter is fixed and cannot be appropriated.
I can possess native fluency in English, but that does not mean I can also physically become an Anglo-Saxon.
In extolling the Arabic language* and admonishing** the Bedouin conduct, Islam states a fascinating feature embedded within human beings, which is as follows:
Anyone can master any language.
Therefore, one sees a non-Arab of ANY race/ethnicity reciting the Quranic verses as beautifully and effortlessly as an Arab.
It can be said that Islam is the only system that balances the particularity and universality of human existence.
It prevents a particularity from eating its own self. Also, it stops a universality from enveloping and destroying a particularity.
“Indeed in that is a lesson for those of vision.” [3:13]
*: see Quran 12:2, 13:37, 16:103, 41:3 **: see Quran 9:97, 9:98, 49:14
Deemed ye then that We had created you for naught, and that ye would not be returned unto Us?
[Surah Al-Mu’minun: 115] Translation: Muhammad William Marmaduke Pickthall
The Noble Qur’an uses the terms In-saan [انسان] and bash’ar [بشر] to refer to a human being [man and woman].
They are often used interchangeably but they, nevertheless, have differences.
Bash’ar is a more empirical description. It is concerned with the outward appearance. It is the superficial and material account of a human being.
Now, as far as In-saan is concerned, it signifies a more profound and higher state.
The word shares its roots with the word Nisyaan [نسيان] which means forgetfulness and amnesia.
It is said that In-saan is a being who is in a state of forgetfulness with regards to its purpose.
So, when a Bash’ar is aware of his/her lack of knowledge and forgetfulness and strives to overcome it, he/she attains the rank of In-saan.
The Self is called Nafs (نفس).
It has three categories:
Nafs Ammarrah [نفس أمارة] : The part of self that entices Man to follow his lust and baser instincts.
Nafs Luvammah [نفس اللوامة] : The part of self that admonishes Man to review, repent, and mend his ways.
Nafs Mutma’innah [نفس المطمئنة] : The highest level of self whose bearer finds satisfaction and bliss in absolute submission to the Ultimate Reality [الحق].
The primordial condition on which every human being is born is called Fitrah [فطرة]. It is a kind of operating system, a software which in its uncorrupted and undefiled form helps Man to establish a connection with Allah Almighty.
Tacitus writes in chapter 11 of his Germania, and it is a fascinating observation:
“About minor matters the chiefs deliberate, about the more important the whole tribe. Yet even when the final decision rests with the people, the affair is always thoroughly discussed by the chiefs. They assemble, except in the case of a sudden emergency, on certain fixed days, either at new or at full moon; for this they consider the most auspicious season for the transaction of business. Instead of reckoning by days as we do, they reckon by nights, and in this manner fix both their ordinary and their legal appointments. Night they regard as bringing on day.”
Islam too recognizes not the solar but lunar cycles as the primary source for temporal management for Man. The waxing moon, the full moon, and the waning moon, carry deep signification.
The month can be either 29 or 30 days long. A lunar period runs from sunset to sunset. The date changes as the Sun sets.
The ambiguity at the end of the month is deliberate and when we combine this feature with the fact that the lunar months float throughout the seasons, we find with ourselves a way to frustrate the totalitarian imposition of fixed time, which has been one of the most glaring characteristics of the marketization of human societies.
And for the moon We have appointed mansions till she return like an old shrivelled palm-leaf.
Surah Ya Seen Verse 39
Lo! the vigil of the night is (a time) when impression is more keen and speech more certain.
Surah Muzzammil, Verse 6.
Translations: William Muhammad Marmaduke Pickthall
The text in bold is parts that I quote from the article.
To which Mr. Vehmgericht replied,
I reply as follows:
So what if it is Arabic??
Linguistic expression rests in the metaphysical domain.
It is one aspect that distinguishes us human beings from other living creatures. It is something above the biological existence.
On the biological grade, we are all divided into different races and tribes.
However, on the metaphysical level, we are all the same.
For instance, how does a Dravidian who speaks Tamil or Malayalam or Kannada, etc., masters the languages of the Indo-European or Afro-Asiatic families?
How does a Korean or Indonesian learn English or French or German and vice versa?
So on and so forth.
A child does not born with a language already saved in his memory. He familiarizes himself with the sounds he hears around him and then tries to express them with his tongue.
What if a child born to German parents grows up in a Spanish household where he never listens to a word of German? Will he speak German? That is why to preserve a culture, it is necessary that children of a given ethnolinguistic community be taught about their ancestral heritage. Otherwise, that heritage will be lost.
There are many non-Whites who speak and write English better than most Englishmen, however, that does NOT mean that English heritage will be preserved even if there are no Whites Anglo-Saxons around.
Immigrants who migrate to Western lands like the UK, USA, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, the Netherlands, Belgium, etc., from South/West Asia faced this disconnect. Many a time, their children cannot speak the language of their ancestors or those who do speak, speak it in alien accents. Indeed, this is a strange breed of men which does not belong anywhere. It hangs in the air. It has no grounding.
Anyhow, coming back to the argument.
Men can learn any language. As we can see, it is quite evident.
There are Muslims of Han, Senegalese, Berber, Kurdish, Indonesian, Caucasian, Tamil, Bengali, Assamese, Turkic etc., stock who when recite the Arabic verses do not give a hint that they belong to an entirely different linguistic family.
Qur’an was revealed in Arabic because learning and mastering a language is embedded in our constitution. It is a universal aspect of human nature.
Hence, if Providence chose Arabic for the transmission of the Final Revelation to mankind, it was perfectly in line with our disposition.