Islam and the Bahá’í Faith
Article written by a Muslim on the term "Seal of the Prophets", and presented in the usenet newsgroup "alt.religion.islam".
-----Article by Altway on the different interpretations by Muslim Scholars:--------
Subject: Question to Kovash
Date: Fri, 06 Nov 1998 16:21:39 BST
From: AltWay [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Organization: ArgoNet, but does not reflect its views
References: 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11
In article [email@example.com], "Kavosh Soltani" [firstname.lastname@example.org] wrote:
Several articles in support of the idea that Muhammad (saw) was the last Prophet. He thinks that all scholars agree with him.
It has been my contention that different people interpret the Quran differently, and that his ideas are also interpretations. Kavosh, however, rejects this view and supposes that he makes no interpretations but understands the Word of Allah as Allah understands it.
In order to show that there have been scholars whose opinions differ from that of Kavosh, I will quote some extracts.
But before this I would be grateful if Kavosh would enlighten me by explaining the following verses ( This is no desire to argue, but I do want to hear as many sides as possible so that I can come to some kind of probable conclusion) :-
"For every announcement there is a term, and ye will come to know." 6:67
"And every community has its term, and when its term commes, they cannot put it off an hour nor yet advance it." 7:34
"No community can outstrip its term nor can they lag behind." 15:5 and 23:43
Can you also explain the covenant with the Prophets (Quran 3:81) - who is the messenger whom all the others must help. Is it Muhammad (saw)? The verse does not mention him, so what would make you think it is?
Now for the quotations :-
1. First of all, Hazrat Ayesha Al Siddeeqah's verdict: "QOOLOO INNAHU KHATAMUL ANBIYAA'I WA LAA TAQOOLOO LAA NABIYYA BA'DAHU" ("Say he is 'seal of prophets' but do NOT say 'there is no prophet after him' ") (Takmilah Majma'ul Bihaar, p. 85) It appears that she knew that the statement could easily be misconstrued, and to the effect, presented her valued clarification.
2. Our second hero, the saint Imam Raaghib Al Isfahaani, Rehmatullah Alaih wrote:
"Prophethood is of two kinds, general and special. The special prophethood, viz: the law-bearing prophethood is now unattainable; but the general prophethood continues to be attainable." (Bahr al Muheet, vol. 3, p. 28)
The "general" kind of prophethood is also the one that Ahmadi Muslims believe continues, and not the law-bearing one.
3. Hero of Heroes, Hazrat Sayyed Abdul Qaadir Jilaani (R.A.) wrote:
"These attributes are found in the Holy Prophet in the highest abundance, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. That is the reason why he is called Khataman Nabiyyeen." (Tuhfa Mursala Shareef: p. 5)
4. Hazrat Mohiyyuddin Ibni Arabi (Rehmatullah Alaihi) wrote:
"'ISAA ALIHIS SALAAMU YANZILU FEENA HAKAMAN MIN GHAIRI
TASHREE'IN WA HUWA NABIYYUN BILAA SHAKKIN"
("Jesus, may peace be upon him, will descend upon us as a
Hakam, without a law and will be a prophet without any doubt")
(Fatoohati Makkiyyah, vol. 1, p. 570)
Then he writes:
"That prophethood which ended with the advent of the Prophet (pbuh), is only law-bearing prophethood and not the status of prophethood. Thus now there will be no law that cancels the law of the Prophet (pbuh) or that adds to its commandments" (Fatoohaati Makkiyyah, vol. 2, p. 3)
He goes on:
"FAMARTAFA'ATIL NUBUWWATU BIL KULLIYYATI LIHAAZA QULNAA INNA MA-ARTAFA'TU NUBUWWATAT TASHREE'I FA HAAZA MA'ANI 'LAA NABIYYA BA'DAHU"
("Thus prophethood has not been totally abolished. This is why we have said that only law-bearing prophethood has been abolished and this is what is the meaning of (the Hadith) 'there is no prophet after him' "
5. The great saint, Hazrat Maulana Room (Rehmatullah Alaihi) writes: "Make such plans to perform righteousness in the way of God that you attain prophethood within the Ummat (religious community)"
6. Hazrat Sayyed Abdul Kareem Jilani, the renowned mystic of the 8th
century of Hijra wrote:
"Hazrat Muhammad, peace and blessings on him, is the Khataman Nabiyyeen because he attained the highest perfection which no prophet ever did"
(Al Insaanul Kaamil: vol. 1, Ch 36. Pg 69)
Clearly, the controversial expression "khataman nabiyyeen" according to him, was not based on the Prophet's (pbuh) being last.
7. Hazrat Imam Abdul Wahhab She'raani (Alaihir Rehmah) wrote:
"FA INNA MUTLAQAN NUBUWWATI LAM TARTAFI' WA INNAMARTAFA'AT
("Thus, without doubt, ...... prophethood has not been abolished and it is only law-bearing prophethood that is abolished") (Al Yawaaqeetu Wal Jawaahir: pg 27, argument # 3)
8. Hazrat Imam Muhammad Tahir said of Hazrat Ayesha, commenting on her statement: say he is Khataman Nabiyyeen but do not say there is not prophet after him:
"HAZA NAAZIRUN ILAA NUZOOLI 'ISAA WA HAZA AIZAN LAA YUNAA FEE
HADEETH LA NABIYYA BA'DEE LI ANNAHU ARAADA LAA NABIYYA YANSAKHU
(This saying is based on the fact that Jesus is going to descend (as prophet) and it is not against the Hadith 'there is no prophet after me' because the Prophet (pbuh) meant 'there will not be any prophet who would cancel his law) (Takmilah Majma'ul Bihaar, pg 85)
9. Hazrat Imam Ali Qaari (Alaihir Rahmah), an Imam of the Hanafi school and a renowned interpreter of Hadeeth, wrote: "That there is no revelation after the Holy Prophet (pbuh) is false; there is no truth in it. Yes! in the Hadith are the words 'La Nabiyya Ba'di' which, according to scholars, means that there will not be such a prophet in the future who brings such a law that abrogates that of the Holy Prophet (pbuh)." (Al Ishaa'at Fil Sharaatis Saa'ah, pg 226)
10. Hazrat Shah Waliullah Muhaddith of Delhi (Alaihir Rahmah),
the Mujaddid of the 12th century and given the title of "Khatamal
Muhadditheen" by some writers was of the following view:
"KHUTIMA BIHIN NABIYYOONA AI LAA YURJADU MAN YA'MURUHULLAHU
SUBHAANAHU BITTASHREE'I 'ALANNAASI"
("The ending of prophets at the advent of the Holy Prophet means that after him, there can be no such person as would be given a law by the Almighty Allah and sent to the people.") (Tafheemati Ilaahiyyah, Tafheem # 53)
11. Hazrat Maulvi Abdul Haye of Lacknow writes:
"After the Holy Prophet (pbuh) or during his time, for a prophet
to appear is not improbable"
(Daafi'ul Wasaawis Fee Athar Ibn Abbaas, New Edition, pg 16)
12. Maulvi Muhammad Qaasim of Nanauta (Rehmatullah Alaih) who was the founder of the Deoband Seminary, an organisation now viewed with respect by anti-Ahmadiyya organisations, also believed in the views such as the ones I am presenting here. He stated:
"According to the layman, the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings on him, being Khatam is supposed to have appeared after all the other prophets. But men of understanding and the wise know it very well that being the first or the last, chronologically, does not carry any weight. How could, therefore, the words of the Holy Quran 'But he is the messenger of Allah and the Seal of Prophets (33.41)' mean to glorify him? But I know very well that none from among the Muslims would be prepared to agree with the common men" (Tahzeer-ul-Naas: pg 3)
13. Also, among recent scholars, Nawab Siddique Hasan Khan of Bhopal, who was the leader of the Ahle Hadith in India wrote:
"The Hadith 'La Wahya Ba'da Mautee' is baseless, although 'La Nabiyya Ba'adee' is quite correct, which, according to people with knowledge, means that 'there shall be no prophet after me who shall be raised with a new code of Law which shall abrogate my law'." (Iqtarabus Saa'at: pg 162) ----------end article---------------