By the Book: Koran Calls for Concern for Human Life

By Goode, Stephen | Insight on the News, October 15, 2001 | Go to article overview

By the Book: Koran Calls for Concern for Human Life


Goode, Stephen, Insight on the News


This magazine profoundly regrets the wrath visited against Muslims in this country in the wake of the cowardly attacks by fanatics on the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington. Islam does not sanction such evil, nor do the vast majority of Muslims. The following are quotations taken from the Koran, the holy book of that great faith, in the translation done one-half century ago by N.J. Dawood.

There is much in the Koran that both Christians and Jews will recognize as part of their own traditions, including not only the accounts of Adam and Eve and the stories of Noah, Jonah and Moses, but also of Jesus and his birth to a virgin. Here, however, the selections Insight offers have been chosen randomly. What they show is Islam's profound concern for human life and that faith's deep devotion to Allah, who repeatedly is invoked in the book as "the compassionate" and "the merciful," the One True God.

* "Your Lord best knows what is in your hearts; He knows if you are good. He will forgive those that turn to Him. Give to the near of kin their due, and also to the destitute and the wayfarers. Do not squander your substance wastefully, for the wasteful are Satan's brothers; and Satan is ever ungrateful to his Lord. But if, while waiting for your Lord's bounty, you lack the means to assist them, then at least speak to them kindly."

* "Do not tamper with the property of orphans, but strive to improve their lot until they reach maturity. Give just weight and full measure; speak for justice, even if it affects your own kinsmen. Be true to the covenant of Allah. Thus Allah exhorts you, so that you may take heed."

* "Lost are those that in their ignorance have wantonly slain their own children and made unlawful what Allah has given them, inventing falsehoods about Allah. They have gone astray and are not guided."

* "Believers, Jews . …

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