Anonymous asked in Society & CultureHolidaysRamadan · 9 years ago

Is it incumbent on All Muslims to learn Arabic? If so,why are some Muslims "wasting" time in idle pursuits?

Should they not spend some time daily to learn Arabic?

Would that not strengthen their faith resulting is less dependency on others who "tell" them what the Quran says?

Assalaamu alaykum.


@Thunder Stormer: Don't you see it -that's the problem. The Christian Bibles available now are not in the original language in which it was originally written _ Hebrew (OT) and Greek (NT). Had I have access to the original scripts maybe i would not be seeking another religion today. You have something intricately unique, a book with God's own revelation. If you cannot be overjoyed about that I am.

Update 2:

@Hassan: I am learning Arabic not Urdu. Can you please translate the verses you wrote into English. I am aware that Allama Iqbal wrote Urdu poetry so I am just surmising that the language of the stanza is in Urdu.

Update 3:

@manikant: Are you that Guruji I met at the Temple in Mysore India? you sound just like him. I asked him if he lived by love alone and he said "yes" and from the tips that the Tourist gave. I love his answer so mush that I gave him 1000 rupees. His eyes almost fell out of the sockets. But seriously, man cannot live by bread alone nor love alone. The Swamiji I met in India always collected alms and they were the greatest of poets and philosophers I ever came across in all my travels.

Update 4:

@Ghostdude: Ha, you sound like me and even involved in the same pursuits. I like your response. I found out the same in learning Arabic as you are said. May Allah bless and guide us all.

10 Answers

  • Mintee
    Lv 7
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    I think some are missing the point..

    If we as muslims believe the Quran to be the literal word of God..

    then I would do everything in my power to try to learn arabic to fully feel God talking to "me" and me only..

    You will miss the nuance, the subtle beauty of the most perfect grammer ever if you just accept a translation.. No other language can capture this...

    If God chose Arabic.. he chose it for a reason.. i want to be a part of this.. to feel it fully

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  • 9 years ago


    it is true that it is preferred that we learn arabic so that we do not have a translated religion . it helps us to live the moment when reciting the Quran, so we can know what we are saying when we are speaking to Allah in our dua or in our prayers etc.

    It is a condition of scholarship to know proper classical arabic. I have been studying it for 4-5 years (ever since starting uni- i did several courses and i am happy with where i am now).

    some people not only derive their own rulings from the Quran and sunnah and other islamic sources without the proper tools - they lack a knowledge of logic, rhetoric, legal methodology, grammar, arabic etymology, and then they say crazy stuff and then try to make others think the way they do. this is not right and needs to be rejected outright- because it will destroy our religion if everyone just comes up with their own interpretation of what they find in english books :) fortunately its only a minority of people doing that.

    I find the study of Arabic so beautiful. It makes me appreciate Islam so much.

    Even the way the word "Bismillah" is structured is so beautiful - the grammar indicates that you are associating (or dragging metaphotically) an action to the eternal - so your actions are not temporary but eternal. But the Basmallah has soo many other connotations that once i get to find out about them, i can only imagine what hte rest of the Quran has to offer the reader!! What an amazing book!! What a door to go through! The book wherein is a whole new world! Amazing!!

    In terms of orthography, some poets of the past said that the word ADAM- Alif Daal Meem- when written in kufic, shows Man in the positions of prayer- Standing, Sitting, Prostrating. And Adam does all that.


    My teacher for Arabic used to teach 1 hr of arabic, 1 hr of Quranic tafsir, and 1 hr of Arabic morphology=

    the Tafsir classes were so intense- we'd spend 2 -3 classes one one or two verses because the arabic is so intense you dont know how you can get by without an appreciation of Arabic

    Good luck with everything sister- learn your arabic!!

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  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    Define "Idle pursuits"?

    It is not compulsory for Muslims to learn Arabic. The Arabic in The Koran is different from the literal Arabic spoken today. But it is recommended for Muslims to learn to read The Koran.

    The failure of Muslim in many areas is because of stupidity. There are "holy" men who claim to know The Koran, but they don't contribute anything but hate and destruction.

    Couple that with corrupt leadership, we have all the unholiness there can be.

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  • 9 years ago

    pothi padh padh jag muva, pandit bhaya na koi,

    dhaaiyee akshar prem ka, padhe so pandit hoiyee.

    One does not gain wisdom and become a scholar by reading books, books and books a whole lifetime.

    The true scholar is one who can read and speak the language of love.

    This is the translation of the above Hindi couplet of the great Mystic Saint Kabir Dasji who was neither a Hindu nor a Muslim. He was both and yet neither.

    Speak the language of love and not that of hate. Speak the language which unites and not one which causes conflict and divides the heart. Speak something which endears you to the listener and yet creates peace everywhere.

    Be above religion. Be above the book. Be above hate. Be above anger. Be above lust. Be above fear. Be above greed. Be above jealousy. Be above falsehood.

    Be truthful. Be non-violent in thoughts, words and deeds.

    As you sow, so shall you reap. So do good deeds.

    Do not go after God. Go after goodness. Do good.

    The highest goodness is God. When you do good and be good, goodness will follow you. In fact, God will follow you.

    God is LIGHT. God is TRUTH. God is LOVE.

    Get inner peace. Give inner peace.


    God Bless.

    @ Salma Hayek - You are right. We cannot live by love alone. But rather than following hatred filled and jealous God religions, one can open their eyes to the peaceful religions of India .

    Source(s): THE WHOLE OF INDIA, ITS RICH CIVILIZATION AND ITS HISTORY. THE WHOLE OF MANKIND. THE WHOLE OF THE WORLD. THE LOVING GOD - WHEREVER HE BE, IN WHATEVER FORM OR FORMLESSNESS. I am reminded of Sir Isaac Newton, who once said that he was just like a small child at the seashore collecting pebbles from here and there while the whole ocean of knowledge lay undiscovered. This is what is HUMILITY. We have to learn a lot from such great people.
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  • 9 years ago

    Incumbent it is not but I would say if you want to research the text of the Quran deeply then Arabic is recommended. For ordinary Muslims, (for want of a better term) it is neither necessary nor obligatory. There may have been a time where the tools of verification were difficult to use but not impossible. However in this "crossed checked to death" real time online atmosphere, the need for learning the entire language may be redundant for some.

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  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    I'm learning Arabic because it is my husband's language, well I am trying to learn Arabic, I got some workbooks that I haven't used yet. If I have a question about something in my Qur'an that I don't understand in English I ask my husband what it means or if I have a question about the Prophets (Alayhi Salaam) or just something in Islam that confuses me I ask my husband or ask his brother that has Hadeeth.

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  • 9 years ago

    You make a good point that's unfortunately over-powered by an even better point. To explain:

    Yes, it's true that reading the text of the Quran in the language it's written in, would allow followers to keep from being dependent on others' interpretations of it. But that's no guarantee of anyone being less "idle" overall, or in some way strengthening their faith.

    Look at the Christian Bible. It's in English and many Christian followers speak and read English. But that doesn't stop them from becoming dependent on others' interpretations of the Bible. Nor does it stop them from being crappy Christians. Nor does it necessarily make them more "faithful".

    The main problem is you're asking the wrong question. The more important one is: why is any one person's personal interpretation of ANY religious text (regardless of language) - considered the ONLY correct one ... or "more correct" than someone else's. There's no way to show who is and who isn't "preaching the truth", or "translating it correctly".

    These religious texts can all be interpreted in infinite ways. There is no one perfect interpretation.

    God (or Allah), if you believe in that entity, probably resides more w/in peoples' hearts, minds, intentions and good deeds, than in any one ancient book.

    ETA: you entirely missed my point. Any book at all can be interpreted in a gazillion ways. Looking at it that way, the quality of the translation is moot. I'm not a Christian btw.

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  • Hassan
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    it is not incumbent for every Muslim to learn Arabic.

    but i agree with you that Muslims should learn Arabic so that they can understand Quran directly.

    but today the condition of Muslims is that they don't even want to read Quran. they are least interested in Islam. this is the major cause of their downfall.

    wo moaziz theey zamane me Muslaman ho kar

    aur tum khoar hoe tarik-e-Quran ho kar.

    (Allam Mohamed Iqbal)

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  • M.I.C.
    Lv 6
    9 years ago

    yes, more you know Arabic, more you have understanding of Islam.

    Arabic is a miraculous language, it transfers its meaning just by listening it carefully, repeatedly as well.

    every sound has an abstract meaning comprehend to our intellect spiritually, those abstract meanings of the sounds in Arabic are closest (closest as compared to any other natural language)to its dictionary meaning,

    Listening holy Quran carefully again and again or reading it daily helps as well.

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  • 9 years ago

    It is preferable. It cannot be called compulsory.

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