Explaining Sunnah to modern day readers for a better understanding of Holy Quran.

A hadith narrated from Aise(r.a) informs us that Prophet Muhammad’s ethics and ethical manners were based on Holy Quran.

This hadith alone is enough for every Muslim to grasp the true meaning of importance of following firmly Rasulullah(saw)’s sunnah. We all know that in order to understand Quran in a better way, we follow him.

We follow him because he is the best example of “how to live according to Quran”

We follow him because his heart was full of “humanitarian” love when it comes to charity.

We follow him because he is the perfect blend of modesty and kindness, especially towards women, poor and the needy.

We follow him because Allah(j.j) says so:

“And thou (standest) on an exalted standard of character.” (Al-Qalam 68/4)

“He who obeys the Messenger, obeys Allah: But if any turn away, We have not sent thee to watch over their (evil deeds).”( An-Nisa 4/80)

We can prolong the list for more but we aim to pinpoint a different reasoning why we should explain to modern-day readers who are researching about Islam, especially non-Muslims.

In the 20th century, especially in Anglo-Saxon thought schools, sociologist are contemplating about “history of culture” from a “medium” point of view.

These theories of cultural studies shed some light to fundamental perceptive difference in understanding cultures.

Western civilization’s mental faculties are established on the existence and formation of “text” and textuality. Without a written form or document, an idea or a philosophical remark or connotation doesn’t mean much to a western reader. Therefore, many sociologist like Walter Ong classify western culture as “written culture”

Eastern culture however, comes from the tradition of “logos”, in Greek. Logos means “Qalam” in Arabic. It is the wisdom of organically produced culture without the limitations of linguistics and boundaries of written documents.

In oral culture, the words uttered from the mouth and the combinations of physical actions and manners are evaluated within a society as “norms” and “truth”, instead of “documents.”

That’s the reason why Holy Quran has been revealed to Prophet Muhammad(saw) in 23 years.

The sahaba never asked for a “complete wall of text or a finished binding of a book”.

They observed The Messenger of Allah(saw) in the most organic, resolute and natural way.

They lived with him, they thought with him, they felt with him.

In that special connectivity, they learnt Holy Quran in the best possible form.

Today, when western readers hold the book of Quran and try to read it from within the perspective of an “written culture”, they can easily fail to receive the message.

Therefore, it is important to explain to modern-day reader the importance of following “sunnah” to understand Holy Quran better. Muslims follow their prophet for many reason, understanding Holy Quran is one of them.

Baris Tarimcioglu/islamoformation.com


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