The doubts recently raised by Othman al-Khamis in one of his speeches have been the topic of our discussion for several sessions. Wahhabis have not only uploaded those doubts to their websites they have but also distributed them in forms of pamphlets all over the world.
The distortion of the Qur’an is one of those doubts. It is not a newly-raised doubt, though. It has been raised against Shiism since long time ago. Anti-Shia individuals have been always accusing Shias of believing in the distortion of the Qur’an. First I read out Othman al-Khamis’ speech to you and then I point to the origin of that doubt which was initially raised by Ibn Taymiyya as well as the founder and theoretician of Wahhabism, Mohammad Ibn Abdul Wahhab.
Othman al-Khamis has said,
الشيعة يقولون بتحريف القرآن الكريم أو نقول مذهب الشيعه يقول بتحريف القرآن
Later he quoted Ibn Hazm al-Andalusi as saying,
و من قول الإمامية كلّها قديماً و حديثاً أنّ القرآن مبدّلٌ زِيدَ فيه ما ليس منه و لبس من كثير و يدلّ عليه كثير
The followers of Imamiyya (twelve Imams) are of this belief that many verses have been deleted from the original version of the Qur’an and many more have been added to the present Qur’an. In fact, the present copy of the Qur’an is not the same as the one originally revealed to the Prophet.
After pages of explanation about this myth in the pamphlet, Othman al-Khamis quoted narratives from Sayyid Murtada, Sayyid Ne’matollah Jazayeri, the writers of Wasail and Hadaiq as well as Nuri, the writer of Mustadrak. In the end, he jumped to the conclusion that Shias believe in the distortion of the Qur’an.
Wahhabis highly respect Ibn Taymiya. Neither Sahaba (the Prophet’s Companions), Tabi‘un (Followers) nor Tabi‘ al-Tabi‘in (the Followers of the Followers) are as respectable as him in their view. They easily and swiftly reject even a reliable Hadith from the Holy Prophet (PBUH) in case it is at odds with what Ibn Taymiya has said. Ibn Taymiyya is quoted in Minhaj al-Sunna, vol. 1, p. 25 as saying,
اليهود حرّفوا التورات و كذلك الرافضة حرّفوا القرآن
Shias believe in the distortion of the Qur’an exactly like Jews who believe in the distortion of Torah.
This very idea was also pointed out by the Pakistani Wahhabi leader Ihsan Ilahi Zahir in his book, al-Shia wa al-Qur’an, pp. 24-25. Many of the contemporary Wahhabi figures are following his footsteps today. Fortunately, Allame Amini has given a thorough and comprehensive response to Ihsan Ilahi Zahir’s comments in his al-Ghadir. The prominent Sunni and Wahhabi interpreter, Mr. Alusi (died in 1270 AH) has also addressed the issue. Mohammad Ibn Abdul Wahhabi who is the founder of Wahhabism has independently discussed it in-depth in his book, al-Rad Ala al-Rafida, p. 14. His fanatic belief is as follows,
الاعتبار بتحريف القرآن يستلزم بتكفير الصحابه حتي عليٍّ ع
Disbelieving in Sahaba and even in Amir al-Momenin Ali (AS) is the necessary step for believing in the distortion of the Qur’an.
Such remarks are not so much of significance in our opinion. Our dear listeners should notice how Wahhabis are making use of the issue of the distortion of the Qur’an as leverage to exert pressure on Shiism. In answer to a question which is available in the web, one of the top extremist Saudi Muftis, Sheikh Abdullah Ibn Jibreil, has said,
فالرافضة بلا شكٍ كفّارٌ لأربعة ادلة طعنهم للقرآن و ادّعائهم أنّه حذف منه أكثر من ثلثه
Shias are infidel in our view for four reasons. The first is because they believe that two thirds of the Quranic verses have been deleted, so the present copy of the Qur’an only contains one third of the original one which was revealed to the Holy Prophet. Secondly, Shias are opposed to the Prophet’s Sunna. They do not comply with the narratives of Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim because they consider Sahaba unbelievers. Thirdly, they regard Sunnis as unbelievers and unclean. And the fourth reason is because Shias exaggerate Ahl al-Bayt and prefer saying “O Ali” rather than “O Allah”.
You can read this in Ibn Jebreil’s website or in al-Lo’lo al-Makki Min Fatawa Sheikh Ibn Jebreil, p. 39.
The declaration of war against Shias and the order to murder them both stem from the issue of the distortion of the Qur’an. In his recent speech, the Iraqi Wahhabi leader, Darqawi, openly issued the decree of murdering Shias for what he called their belief in the distortion of the Qur’an. It is some two or three years since Abdol Malik issued a declaration of war against Shias and the Iranian establishment. He slays a number of people in Sistan Baluchestan, southeast of Iran, every now and then. Likewise, in a similar speech about the distortion of the Qur’an, he called for the massacre of Shias as part of a so-called Jihad against them.
That’s why we need to be well-prepared and well-equipped to counter the spread of this myth against Shias. Here I want to give seven short answers to the doubts they have raised. They will be soon published in a booklet as well. Seven answers are to be given along with seven doubts raised in reverse. I have said that expressing contrary doubts is one of the best methods of responding to doubts. Any response they offered in justification of the raised doubts would be given back to them in answer to their own doubts, الكلام الكلام . Here are the seven answers:
The first answer: You are accusing us of believing that two thirds of the Qur’an have been deleted. If Shias have been of this belief for the past fifteen centuries, have they ever published a copy which is based on the original one revealed to the Prophet? Has anyone of you seen a copy of the Qur’an in a Shia hand which is different from the present copy? A top Sunni think tank has said,
ان شيعة الجعفريه يرون كفر من حرّف القرآن و إنّ المصحف الموجود بين اهل السنة هم نفس الموجود في مساجد و بيوت الشيعه
Jafari Shias believe that anyone who distorts the Qur’an is an infidel indeed. The Qur’an which is among Sunnis is exactly the same as the copies found in Shia mosques.
Shias are not a group of isolated people living in a fortress with unknown beliefs or books. There are millions of Shias living in four corners of the world. Latest statistics, released by official online centers a couple of months ago, indicate that approximately 400 million Shias exist in the world over; in China, India, Pakistan as well as in the continents of Europe, America and Africa. Has anyone heard from someone saying that he saw a copy of the Qur’an in a Shia hand or a Shia mosque which is different than what he himself possessed?
If Shiism had really believed in the distortion of the Qur’an, it would have definitely provided its followers with a copy which matched the original manuscript. It is therefore clearly evident that it is not the case.
The second answer: The attempts Shias have made over the Quranic sciences and the interpretation of the present copy of the Qur’an are twice or three times as much as those made by Sunnis all along the history. According to statistics released by the institute of Dar al-Qur’an Karim in Qom-under the supervision of Hazrat Ayatollah al-Uzma Golpaigani- there are 5,000 books in the field of the Quranic sciences and interpretation registered in the name of Shias. The number of Shias is just a fourth of the Sunni population. From among one billion and 200 million Muslims, only 400 million of them are Shias. If any sect had worked over the interpretation of the Qur’an as hard as Shias have, there would have naturally existed at least 20,000 books in the field of the Quranic sciences and interpretation as a result. And now you see that it is not the case. Even their four sects all together have not worked half as much as Shiism has. It is now as strong evidence that Shias do not by any means believe in the distortion of the Qur’an.
The third answer: If somewhere you ran into some laymen or a handful of low-ranking scientific Shia figures who believed in the distortion of the Qur’an, could they ever represent the common belief of the whole Shia population? Shouldn’t the beliefs of any sect be obtained from its most notable scholars? Normally, when someone is eager to figure out what Shafeis think about the creation of the Qur’an for example, he will never choose low-ranking Mowlawis to ask his questions. But he would rather come across the top Shafei figures. Thus, it is a general rule that the viewpoints of distinguished leaders of any sect do reflect its actual doctrine. I am going to prove that neither high-ranking Shia scholars nor well-known Shia jurists from Sheikh Mufid (died in 413 AH) to Ayatollah Uzma Khoyi, Imam Khomeini and others believed in the distortion of the Qur’an. Instead, they considered this notion to the serious detriment of the Prophet’s miracle. They regard the distortion of the Qur’an as a superstitious belief which only belongs to the insane. Later on, I will point to the views of any of the above-mentioned Shia scholars. This answer was just an introduction to the fourth answer.
The fourth answer: The opinions and beliefs of our scholars are completely overt to the public. This subject will be discussed in details later.
The fifth answer: A large number of senior Sunni figures who have impartially studied Shia books and have read the quotations of the Shia scholars have all certified the fact that Shias have never believed in the distortion of the Qur’an.
The sixth answer: From the viewpoints of our scholars, the narratives surrounding the distortion of the Qur’an are fabricated. According to them, enemies of Shiism falsely attributed such narratives to Aimma to tarnish their image in the society. They believe that these kinds of narratives are weak and in case any of them were reliable it had not been certainly about the Qur’an but about its Ta’wil (the esoteric interpretation of the Qur’an). Such narratives can be seen much more in Sunni books than Shia sources.
The seventh answer: These individuals have used the theory of late Nuri in Fasl al-Khitab as an excuse for fight against Shiism. In his book, Nuri has claimed that there is a general consensus as well as successive transmission about the issue of the distortion of the Qur’an.
Here are our seven inclusive answers. But meanwhile, we voice seven similar doubts that need to be answered by Sunnis. Alike accusation that you level against Shia scholars that they believe in the distortion of the Qur’an, we announce that several of your scholars are also of the same belief. They say the narratives concerning the distortion of the Qur’an are uncountable. Your scholars whether the pioneers or the contemporary ones have independently written books in an effort to prove their claim. Omar Ibn Khattab was the ever first person who declared that the Qur’an has been distorted. Dozens of narratives derived from Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim are clear evidence for his belief. Even Umm al-Momenin, Ayisha, whose ideas you abide by with no question, did also have the same view. Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud who is one of the great Sunni interpreters, had a faith that the Qur’an has been subjected to distortion. Any response you could give us in the face of the narratives and comments your own scientific figures have made about the distortion of the Qur’an, we would return the very same response to you in an answer to your doubt الكلام الكلام. According to Hazrat Ayatollah Sobhani, raising such discussions and doubts are not only meant to deal a blow to Shiism, but they can be to the serious detriment of Islam on the whole. If Christians, Jews and Zoroastrians see how Sunnis and Shias are trading accusations that the other side believes in the distortion of the Qur’an, they would dismiss Muslims’ notion that Torah and Bible have been distorted. They would suspect as to whether Muslims themselves believe that their book has been modified. Through such questions and discussions, you may be apparently seeking to bring Shiism into question, but in reality, it is the religion of Islam which becomes your prime target. Therefore, you’d be better off burying the hatchet and avoiding flaunting the quotations of your low-ranking scholars. Two years ago, a debate was held by the Channel of al-Mustaqilla between two Wahhabi and two Shia figures. Othman al-Khamis fromKuwait and ‘Aidh Qarani from Saudi Arabia were on the Wahhabi side and Dr. Mousavi and Mr. Asadi on the Shia side. When the issue of the distortion of the Qur’an was put forward, the Shia scholars gave compelling reasons so that Othman al-Khamis remained speechless. The CDs of the debate is available. After a week of heated debate, the men all finally reached a conclusion that neither Sunnis nor Shias believe in the distortion of the Qur’an. Al-Mustaqilla’s Dr. Hashemi treated the Wahhabi and Shia guests to a roasted lamb to celebrate the agreed conclusion. The guests all had their lunch there in agreement. But now you see that less than a year after the consensus, Othman al-Khamis has raised the same issue again. It clearly reveals that they are not looking for responses to their doubts but they only want to spread rumors about Shiism. What they are after is only to weaken Shiism and make the beliefs of the Shia youths shaky. They are struggling to provoke public sentiment against Shias and mobilize the people of the society against them. Otherwise, Othman al-Khamis’s recorded comments are available. You can listen to. He was the first person who started eating from the roasted lamb which was offered in celebration of the reached agreement over the issue. It was the answer in summary. And now here is my detailed response. Two or three points need to be elaborated here. The opinions and beliefs of our scholars are completely explicit to the public. Now I refer to two points to make clear what exactly Shia scholars, whether the former or the contemporary ones, have thought about the distortion of the Qur’an. While explaining the eleventh section, p. 93, Sheikh Saduq (died in 380 AH) has said,
اعتقادنا أنّ القرآن الذي أنزله الله علي نبيّه هو ما بين الدفتين و هو ما في ايدي الناس...
The Qur’an which God revealed to His prophet is the copy which is within reach of people…
Sheikh Mufid (died in 413 AH) has also said in Awail al-Maqalat, pp. 54-56,
قد قال جماعة من اهل الإمامية أنّه لمينقص من كلمة و لا من آية و لا من سورة و لكن حذف ما كان مثبتاً في مصحف اميرالمؤمنين من تأويله و تفسير معانيه علي حقيقة تنزيله
Not a single word, verse or chapter has been deleted from the Qur’an. We barely believe that the only deletion made in Amir al-Momenin’s copy of the Qur’an has been whatever he himself had added concerning the Tafsir (explanation of outer meaning of the verses) and Tawil (explanation of the inner and concealed meaning of the verses). And there was not by any means a deletion of any verses. Sayyid Murteda also did have the same opinion. Sheikh Tusi has confirmed in Tibyan, vol. 1, p. 4 that the copy of the Qur’an which can be found with people is exactly the one revealed to the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him and His Household). In seventh and eighth centuries AH, Allame Helli had written in Ajwabat al-Masail al-Ma’aniyya, p. 121, question 13,
لا تأويل و لا تأخير و لا تقديم فيه و أنّه لميزد و لمينقص و نعوذ بالله من أمّة تعتقد مثل ذلك
…we should find refuge in God from an ummah who believes that the Qur’an was distorted.
In al-Bayan, p. 295, said Mr. Khoyi,
إنّ حديث تحريف القرآن حديث خُرافة و خيانة
The myth of the distortion of the Qur’an is superstitious and imaginary.
And Imam Khomeini (May God Bless Him) said in Tahdhib al-Usul, vol. 2, p. 165, “The copy of the Qur’an which can be found among people is exactly the one revealed to the Prophet. And no wise person will pay a heed to the narratives about this myth”. In others words, the belief of the distortion only belongs to the insane and no reasonable person is expected to accept the existing narratives in this regard. This is what high-ranking Shia figures believe. “Trading accusations of Sunnis and Shias will benefit no one except for the enemies of Islam”, wrote Mr. Sobhani in Mafahim al-Qur’an, vol. 10, p. 448. In the fifth answer, I said that a large number of Sunni scholars, who have read our books and analyzed the quotations of our scholars, have expressed their disagreement with Ibn Taymiyya, Mohammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab, Ihsan Ilahi Zahir, Othman al-Khamis and Dr. Qaffari. Here I point to a few of them as an example. Sheikh Mohammad Abu Zohre, also known as Imam Abu Zohre is an Egyptian man whom many Sunni tribes approve of. He has said in al-Imam al-Sadiq, p. 296, “Irrespective of all existing differences of Fatwa (decrees) among our Shia brothers, their view about the distortion of the Qur’an is alike ours”. On p. 329, he added, “I have read in Sayyid Morteda’s book that anyone believing in the distortion of the Qur’an, he, in fact, has brought the authenticity of the Prophet’s miracle into question”. This is what Sayyid Morteda, one of the great Shia scholars, believes. It is clearly evident that those who make such allegations against Shiism here and there have never heard the ideas of the top Shia scholars. One of the famous and contemporary Sunni figures, Sheikh Mohammad Ghazali, has made a wonderful remark in this regard. He has said in Difa’ ‘An al-Haqiqat wa al-Shari’a, p. 117 and in al-Shi’a fi al-Mamlikat al-So’udiyya, vol. 2, p. 414,
سمعت من هؤلاء يقول في مجلس علمٍ إنّ للشيعة قرآناً آخر يزيد و ينقص عن قرآننا المعروف فقلت له أين هذا القرآن، لماذا لميطّلع الإنس و الجنّ علي نسخة منه. ..
I heard from a Wahhabi in a meeting that Shias possess a Qur’an which lacks some of the verses that ours has and includes some verses that ours lacks. I asked him where I could find such a Qur’an. I asked him, “How on earth could Shias have such a thing for as long as fourteen centuries but no one has been aware of. Why are you spreading rumors? Why do you slander Shias and the revelation of the Qur’an?”
Dr. Ali Abul Wahid, who is a member of the international assembly of ‘Ilm al-Ijtima’, has said in al-Masdar Bayn al-Shi’a wa Ahl al-Sunna, p. 35,
يعتقد الشيعة الجعفرية كما يعتقد اهل السنة أنّ القرآن الكريم هو كلام الله المنزَل علي رسوله
The Shia belief that the present copy of the Qur’an is the same as the genuine one revealed to the Prophet is similar to that of Sunnis.
As mentioned in the sixth answer, Hazrat Ayatollah al-Uzma Khoyi (God Bless Him) has said in al-Bayan, vol. 1, p. 4, “There exist a number of narratives which apparently imply the distortion of the Qur’an. But some of these narratives are either fabricated or so weak that are مُعرَضً عنه فقهاء شيعه . And some of them do not prove any distortion of the Qur’an. They only demonstrate that there existed a copy with Amir al-Momenin (AS) and other Imams which included the Tafsir, Ta’wil and the occasions of the revelation of the verses. The latter kind of narratives can be found in Sunnis books as well.”
Concerning the verse of
شريفه يا أيِها الرسول بلّغ ما أنزل اليك من ربّك. .. و إن لمتفعل فما بلّغت رسالته
Siyuti has quoted Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud in al-Durr al-Manthur,
كنّا نقرأ في عهد رسول الله « بلّغ ما أنزل اليك من ربّك أنّ عليّاً مولي المؤمنين و إن لم تفعل فما بلّغت رسالته
This very narrative has been cited by many including Alusi and Showkani. Do the copies of the Qur’an which are currently being published inside Saudi Arabia contain these words because the narrative meant كنّا نقرء في عهد رسول الله (All of us as Sahaba or Companions of the Prophet said like this)? We also have many similar narratives in our books. We say أنّ عليّاً مولي المؤمنين . It is in truth the Ta’wil of the Qur’an, the Tafsir of the Qur’an and its occasion of the revelation. None of them are signs of any distortion. It is the reason why some Sunni figures such as Professor Mohammad Madini, who is the vice president of the Shari’at faculty in al-Azhar University, have said,
أمّا الإمامية يعتقدون نقص القرآن ؟ فمعاذ الله إنّما هي روايات رُوِيَت في كتبهم كما روي مثلها في كتبنا و اهل التحقيق من الفريقين قد ضعفوها و بيّنوا بطلانها. ..
Do Shias believe in the incompleteness of the Qur’an? I find refuge in God. These are the narratives which are only quoted in their books exactly similar to the ones we do have in our own sources. Both Sunni and Shia researchers have dismissed them and have proved their inaccuracy. I have never seen a Shia who believes that these narratives are considered a part of the Prophet’s Sunna. (The journal of Risalat al-Islam, No. 4, year 11, p. 382).
A number of Wahhabi scholars say that narratives similar to those cited in Shia books can also be found in their books as well. They say, “Shia figures reject these narratives as we do”. Dr. Ali Abdul Wahid has admitted the fact in al-Masdar Bayn al-Shi’a wa Ahl al-Sunna, pp. 30, 31, 37. It is also referred to in Sheikh Rahmat Allah Hindi’s Azhar al-Haq, explained by Dr. Ahmad Hijazi, p. 431 and in Sheikh Mohammad Ghazali’s al-Salafiyya Bayn Ahl al-Sunna wa al-Imamiyya, p. 17 along with dozens of other Sunni sources.
Another point which is worth mentioning is the book of Fasl al-Khitab. Late Nuri’s book dates back to 200 years ago. And its publication triggered uproar at that time. Shahrestani says, “I was in Samira, Iraq, when the book was published. As soon as people learned about it, they began weeping and mourning. They regarded it as a disaster.” Now we do not want to discuss Nuri’s real motive for writing such a book. But just a little while later, Sheikh Mahmoud Tehrani wrote a book in reaction to Fasl al-Khitab and entitled it as Kashf al-Ertiyab ‘An Tahrif al-Kitab. After Nuri got informed of the response, he said,
لاأرضي أن مَن يطالع فصل الخطاب و يترك النظر الي تلك الرسالة
I am not satisfied with anyone who reads my book but does not read the book written in its rejection.
Late Nuri had a good intention. How could Ayisha, Talha and Zubayr, who waged the Battle of Jamal causing the deaths of 20,000 people, say that they had a good intention? But their intention went astray. So they not only did not commit any sins but they also won spiritual rewards. Why? Because
المجتهد إذا اصاب فله أجران و إذا أخطأ فله أجرٌ واحدٌ
Mu’awiya had also a good intention. The Battle of Siffin lasted for 18 months, leading to the deaths of 110,000 Muslim and defenseless people from both sides. Likewise, Mu’awiya never committed any sins, but he won spiritual rewards instead. How come if late Nuri who was a Shia scholar had a good intention, saying that he deduced the distortion of the Qur’an from some narratives, he would be called an infidel! Look at Wahhabi books. Whenever they want to mention Nuri’s name, they use such as abusive and obscene language that they abstain from using it even against the Satan. Have a look at the most recently-published Wahhabi book, Usul Mathhab al-Shi’at al-Imamiyya. Dr. Qaffari’s book is being taught in Medina University as a textbook. Anywhere, there is a mention of Nuri you see the most abusive language which is by any means becoming to neither a Muslim nor a sane human. According to Ibn Hazm, ‘Abd al-Rahman Ibn Muljam who killed Ali had a good intention but it went astray. However, he deserves to be awarded. Wow, what a good intention! Wahhabis have even written a book recently in defense of Yazid Ibn Mu’awiya who has the blood of the Prophet’s (PBUH) children on his hands. He was the one who took the Prophet’s (PBUH) beloved ones prisoners and stroke Imam Hussein’s (AS) lips with a stick. All Sunni historians have authenticated the saga. Yazid Ibn Mu’awiya was the one who gave a go-ahead for a war on Medina during the second year of his caliphate. 700 people from Ansar and Muhajerin lost their lives in that war. He allowed his forces to freely rape the Medina women. Some one thousand illegitimate children were born in that city in the same year. During the third year of his caliphate, he ordered his army to attack the Ka’ba with fire. This discussion is so heated that Ibn Taymiyya has pointed it out in Minhaj al-Sunna. Mr. Ibn Kathir Damishqi has also referred to it. How come this man had a good intention! Ibn Taymiyya has said, “It is true that Yazid has committed all these wrongdoings, but who knows that he had not done good at the same time that could wash away his wrongdoings because according to the Qur’an, إن الحسنات يذهبن السيئات .” But if a Shia declares that he has deduced so-and-so from a narrative, he will be called an infidel who deserves death.
A couple of months ago, a gathering was held in Riyadh where Mr. Bin Jibrail along with some other figures attended. There, they said bringing Shiism under attack and tightening noose around it were nothing but a devotional affair. They called on people to have the intention of keeping closer to God while taking any action against Shias. Otherwise, they have shunned shouldering their religious responsibility. What crimes have Shias committed? Following Ahl al-Bayt and embracing the Prophet’s will concerning the Hadith of Thaqalayn as well as his message of Ghadir are regarded as their crimes.
Dr. Sayyed Mohammad Husseini Qazvini
Responding to Doubts: The Distortion of the Qur’an 02
Professor Husseini Qazvini
Feyziye School, Jan. 30, 2007
As discussed in the previous session, the distortion of the Qur’an is one of the biggest doubts the Wahhabis have raised against Shiism. I said that a Wahhabi leader in Kuwait known as Othman al-Khamis has recently voiced some 40 doubts against Shiism during his half-an-hour-long Friday prayer sermon. Then he has published the speech in a form of booklets in different countries such as Canada, the United States and Germany as well as a number of Persian Gulf littoral states. I did respond to two or three of them before. I began with the issue of the distortion of the Qur’an and provided seven answers. Simultaneously, I did express seven doubts and asked Wahhabis to answer.
I have said it once and again before that one of the main strategies that one should use in a debate is that as soon as he responds to the doubt raised by the other party; he should avoid him raising another one by immediately asking him a similar doubt in reverse. If extremist Sunnis and Wahhabis are supposed to raise 10 to 15 doubts about the Shia culture through a bunch of fake and fabricated narratives and finally issue decrees to authorize the murder of Shias, we should, in return, express 1,500 doubts and push them into a defensive position. However, in our debates we usually try to be committed to friendly negotiations and refrain from turning it into a clash. We abstain from insulting and urge the other side to practice his curtsey. But in case he resorted to an offensive language, we only say,
: إذا خاطبهم الجاهلون قالوا سلاما
When the ignorant address them, they say, "Peace!"
This is a reaction that the Qur’an and Ahl al-Bayt have taught us to have in such situations.
A few years ago, Sheikh Abdullah Ibn Jibrayn, a top Saudi Mufti, declared in a statement that Shias are infidel not atheist for four reasons. You can go and see the statement on his website. The first reason was because Shias believed in the distortion of the Qur’an. Secondly, Shias are opposed to the Prophet’s Sunna. They do not comply with the narratives of Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim because they consider Sahaba unbelievers. Thirdly, they regard Sunnis as unbelievers and unclean. And the fourth reason is because Shias exaggerate Ahl al-Bayt and prefer saying “O Ali” rather than “O Allah”. These are all the symbols of atheism. This is what a senior Mufti of a country believes. Those who travel to Mecca might have met Amrin Bil Ma’ruf, in other words, Amrin Bil Monkar. One of the main doubts he is insisting on is the distortion of the Qur’an. I gave seven answers to this issue so I prefer not repeating them again. Just to sum up, if Shias have had a belief of the distortion, why hasn’t anyone seen a copy of the Qur’an with them all along the history other than the present copy which is used by all Muslims? Has any Sunni scholar heard of such a thing existing among Shias?
Last year, I was in Zahedan to attend an assembly on religions. One of the participants was a Wahhabi Mowlawi who was a graduate from the Medina University and the Friday prayer leader of Sarawan. He was in charge of a Howza (seminary) where he also taught Salafi principles. He was not afraid of being called a Wahhabi or a Salafi. But he looked a very reasonable, well-behaved and respectful Wahhabi. He told me when he was in Mecca, he heard someone accusing Shias of believing in the distortion of the Qur’an. “I defended you, saying I am, for the time being, living with Shias. And I have never seen any Shia having such a belief. And neither have I seen a copy of the Qur’an with them which is different than what Sunnis possess,” he said.
Dr. Zamani, who has been the head of the Supreme Leader’s domicile for Sunni affairs for some time, is now living in Egypt as a cultural negotiator. He told me, “Last year during the Hajj pilgrimage, I went to meet Mr. Ghamedi, the head of a center for ‘ordering with the good and forbidding the evil’. He began his talk with accusing Shias of believing in the distortion of the Qur’an. I told him our scholars’ views about the issue. He continued with another accusation, ‘You believe in vilification of Sahaba (Companions)’. We showed him our scholars’ views about that issue too. This year, when I met him, he remembered all he had heard from me. He looked a little bit more moderate than before. He insisted that I write down whatsoever I had said about the myth of the distortion of the Qur’an and the vilification of Sahaba. He asked me to take the sheet and have three or four Shia jurists to sign it. He promised that he then publish it in Saudi Arabia.”
This will be a foregone conclusion if we follow logic and discuss logically. Our passivity is the key cause behind the ongoing Wahhabi attacks on Shiism. Our absence from the international arenas as well as our incapability to justifiably defend ourselves in scientific Sunni meetings also merits a special mention. Thanks to my long experience, when I was in Mecca’s Umm al-Qura University, with approximately 110,000 students, I could convince the audience when making a speech there. The university, with two branches inMecca and Riyadh, is considered the biggest center of the spread of Wahhabism. Two or three of the students who were accidentally the sons of top Saudi figures converted to Shiism after all.
In 2005, I was in Mecca during the month of Ramadan. I went to a Shia’s house for a ceremony. The head of the Supreme Leader’s domicile, Mr. Tavvab, and Mr. Hadavi were also there. The Wahhabi student who had recently embraced Shiism recited so nice and epic poems in admiration of Amir al-Momenin (AS), Imam Mojtaba (AS) and Imam Hussein (AS) that brought tears to our eyes. The formerly Wahhabi youth in his twenties turned panegyric ceremony into a mourning ceremony.
Another man who had just converted to Shiism said, “I was really fed up with the harsh reactions of Wahhabis. I knew well that their violence, abusive language, insults were by no means in line with Islam. Neither were they based on the Qur’an or the Sunna. I was sick and tired of the Wahhabi meetings. So I decided to replace them with Sufi meetings. The Sufism school of thought is very extensive. Some seven or eight thousand people usually take part in their meetings. Sayyid Mohammad Ibn ‘Alawi Maliki was its leader inMecca and Medina. He passed away a couple of years ago. I was very impressed by their soft and delicate tone. I found the Sufi discussions very much parallel with inner self. After following up their meetings for a few years, I got fed up with them too because I discovered a series of superstitions which were opposed to both the Qur’an and the Sunna. Afterwards, I resorted to the internet. I began surfing the Wahhabi, Sunni and Shia websites. In Shia websites, I came across some wired and offensive words. It made me so upset. By chance, while surfing the web I ran into a young man from Beirut. I asked him why Shias were behaving this much aggressively despite the lenient nature of Islam. Even concerning Pharaoh, God has said,
أنا ربكم الأعلي
I am your Lord, Most High.
He has ordered us to say,
فقولا له قولا لينا
But speak to him mildly.
He even advised the Holy prophet,
لو كنت فظا غليظ القلب، لأنفضوا من حولك
Wert thou severe or harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about thee
In response, the Shia youth said that those who behave harshly are not approved by Shia religious authorities or by the Aimma. Amir al-Momenin (AS) even recommended the crowd, who was swearing at Mu’awiya,
إني أكره لكم أن تكونوا سبابين
I do not like you to be foul-mouthed.
I felt a little bid at ease after talking to the young man. I got used to chatting with him for a couple of hours every night. After discussing different religious issues with him, I realized that the Shia doctrine was precisely what I was looking for. It was fully responsive to all human needs. We, both, kept in touch until the season of Hajj pilgrimage. The young man told me he was on his way to Mecca. He had got my telephone number. He called me as soon as he arrived in Mecca. It was eight o’clock in the morning when I got to his hotel. I entered his room while I was a Wahhabi Sunni but I exited as a Shia after the evening prayer. Now I am feeling extremely proud of myself. And I thank God for helping me find the missing part of my inner self which I was looking for.”
Hence, I humbly appeal to my dear audience to avoid talks on such sensitive issues unless they are able to talk leniently. Not only should they abstain from using a harsh and abusive language, but when faced with any harshness or violence they should act like,
اذا خاطبهم الجاهلون قالوا سلاما
When the ignorant address them, they say, "Peace!"
إذا مروا باللغو مرو كراما
If they pass by futility, they pass by it with honorable (avoidance).
I have said over and over that one should enter negotiations with a Wahhabi who is tolerant enough because when Wahhabis reach a dead-end, they close their eyes and open their mouth. He should be able to remain patient for the sake of Amir al-Momenin (AS) even if he heard the worst and smuttiest words from them. Someone with this specification only is allowed to enter such discussions. If we raise our voice once he does, we won’t be able to continue talking. Moreover, those sitting on the corner would assume that we were unlikely to be right because we easily lost our temper.
The distortion of the Qur’an is one of the main issues used as leverage to pressure Shiism. We responded in details that such a distorted copy does never exist among Shias. Shia scholars from Sayyid Morteda and Sheikh Mufid to the contemporary ones like Ayatollah Khoyi all have consensus of opinions in this regard. They say, “The belief of the distortion of the Qur’an is a superstitious and silly belief”. Imam Khomeini (God Bless Him) has said, “The belief of the distortion of the Qur’an is an irrational belief. A sane person can never be of such a belief”. The existing narratives about this issue are either weak or fake. And there are some others which do not authenticate the distortion of the Qur’an at all but they only refer to the Tafsir and Ta’wil of the holy book. Similar narratives can also be seen in Sunni sources as well. It was the summary of the answer we gave to their doubt. And now to our questions from Sunnis and Wahhabis; we have seven questions. They claim that we along with our scholars believe in the distortion of the Qur’an. As an example, they point to late Nur’s Fasl al-Khitab in which he has proved the distortion. They refer to Allame Majlesi, the writer of Wasail al-Shi’a and Sayyed Ne’matollah Jazaeri as scholars who had such a belief. Now we ask them why Abd al-Wahhab Sha’rani (died in 973) has said in al-Kebrit al-Ahmar in the explanation of al-Yawaqit wa al-Jawahir,
و لولا ما يسبق للقلوب الضعيفة و وضع الحكمة في غير أهلها، لبينت جميع ما سقط من مصحف عثمان
If I were sure that some weak-hearted Muslims would not go astray or become skeptical of their beliefs, I could read out the verses which were deleted from Othman’s manuscript.
You know that during Othman’s caliphate there were a large set of contradicting copies of the Qur’an. And due to the lack of a typing machine, every one had written a manuscript for himself and only read that copy. The copies all differed from one another. There were manuscripts of ‘Ayisha, Hafsah, Anas, Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud, Abu Harirah, Abi Ibn Ka’b and so on and so forth. Othman ordered that all copies be collected and set on fire and said there should exist only one manuscript. Sunnis believe that the present copy of the Qur’an is the one originally compiled under the direction of Othman.
Mr. Sha’rani, one of the senior Sunni figures, has also said, “There are numerous verses which must have been part of the Qur’an but do not exist in the copy compiled by Othman.
You Sunnis! What is your answer to this? Whatsoever it is, we can give the same answer to you in response to your questions about our books. Alusi (died in 1270) who is a prominent Wahhabi Sunni interpreter, has made it clear in Rouh al-Ma’ani,
والروايات في هذا الباب، أكثر من أن تحصي
The number of narratives about the distortion of the Qur’an is uncountable in Sunni books.
O Sunni jurists! Mr. Othman al-Khamis! How can you react to this doubt? We can learn it from you and return it to you in response to your doubts about views of Sayyid Ne’matollah Jazayeri and late Nuri.
The second question: Theses guys claim that our scholars have exclusively written a book which proves the possibility of the distortion of the Qur’an. Nuri’s Fasl al-Khitab was, of course, written around two centuries ago. A number of Shia researchers wrote some books in its rejection. The publication of the book brought about uproar in Samera and other Iraqi cities at that time. Several Shia religious authorities declared the day of national mourning, calling its publication a tragedy. But when another book came to the market in reaction to it, Mr. Nuri himself said, “I am not satisfied with anyone who reads my book without reading the book in its rejection as well”. They consider this book as our Achilles ' heel. Well, we raise a similar doubt. Abu Davoud Sijistani (died in 316) has given evidence to prove the possibility of the distortion of the Qur’an in his book, al-Masahif. Our response to your doubt about Fasl al-Khitab will be exactly the answer you give to our doubt about al-Masahif. In the current era, a professor from Egypt’s al-AzharUniversity, Mohammad al-Khatib wrote a book entitled, al-Furqan fi Tahrif al-Qur’an. Mr. Shaltut, a top Egyptian Mufti, banned its publication. It was published when he passed away. One copy of this book is now available in the library of Ayatollah Sobhani’s Imam Sadiq (AS) Institute. You keep finding fault with us over some books written about the distortion of the Qur’an, label us as infidel and atheist and authorize our assassinations. What do you have yourselves to say about your own books with the same subject?
In his speech, recorded and available in forms of CDs, Abdul Malik Rigi said, “We regard Shias and the Iranian establishment as infidels due to their belief in the distortion of the Qur’an. That’s why we have declared an armed struggle against the Islamic Republic of Iran”. It was this man’s Jundullah terrorist group which opened fire on our countrymen, killing 22 of them in Tasuki, southeastern Iran. They also beheaded another citizen and filmed the tragic scenes. Then they distributed the footage among people to terrify them. Ok, now if you have a knack to debate, we are ready to take on a challenge. How are you going to justify al-Furqan fi Tahrif al-Qur’an written by a well-known Sunni scholar, who is also a graduate from Egypt’s al-Azhar University?
The third question: They claim that our main sources such as Usul Kafi and Tahthib include a number of narratives reflecting the belief in the distortion of the Qur’an. But according to the Shia belief, Kafi فيه روايات صحيحة و روايات ضعيفة i.e. include both reliable and weak narratives. Our jurists do not comply with all narratives cited in Kafi. Whenever needed to make deductions about a point out of Kafi or Tahthib, the jurists check the chain of the transmission of any narrative first. If approved, they then pick up the narrative and comply with it. Wahhabis have written in the websites that according to the Shias’ Imam of the Time,
الكافي كافٍ لشيعتنا
The book of Kafi will suffice our Shias.
We officially declare that it is basically wrong, fake and just a sheer lie. Nuri has explained in Mustadrak that such a narrative even with a weak chain of transmission has never existed. It seems just like old wives’ tales. Late Kuleini wrote Usul Kafi inside Iran and he never traveled to Iraq’ Baghdad. Neither did he meet any of the Nuwwab al-Arbaa (the four special representatives of the Hidden twelfth Imam). And if there had been any such meeting between them, he would definitely have mentioned it as strong evidence to assure that his book enjoyed enough reliability. There have been some individuals whose books were taken to the Imam through his representatives. He either approved them or rejected them. Hussein Ibn Ruh Nowbakhti, whose book really deserved to be approved by Hazrat Vali Asr (AS), sent it to Howza Ilmiyya of Qom for approval as quoted unanimously by all top Shia figures. That Howza with Ahmad Ibn Mohammad Ibn Isa Ash’ari as his head ranked the first and the best seminary on the planet earth at that time. Some other leading scholars such as Ibrahim Ibn Hashim Qomi, who has cited more than 7,000 narratives by himself along with his son, Ai Ibn Ibrahim as well as Ahmad Ibn Mohammad Khalid Barqi and Sahl Ibn Ziyad were all in that seminary. They all inspected the book meticulously and only found one single narrative which did not appear sound. They unanimously approved the book after all. But the case was quite different from that of Kuleini. He never did so either. If so, he would have undoubtedly pointed to it in the introduction of the book. Sunnis accuse us of endorsing Kafi as totally dependable as Sahihayn. But the allegation is unfounded. Neither our jurists nor Kuleini himself were of this opinion. When we say the narratives inside Kafi are reliable does not mean that they are all sound in order to be simply used for the inference of the religious rules. Some books lack the required capability for that purpose like Fiqh al-Reza (AS). It is not even known who its writer was. But Kafi was written by Koleini and deserves to be used by jurists to refer to it and differentiate between sound, weak and Mursal (without transmitter) narratives for deducing religious laws. But what is your take on Sahih Muslim and Sahih Bukhari? They consider the pair as the best book after the Holy Qur’an. They believe,
من كان في بيته صحيح بخاري، كأن في بيته نبي يتكلم
Anyone who has a copy of Sahih Nukhari at home, it is like a prophet keeps making speeches at his home.
A couple of months ago, they had a meeting of the whole recitation of Sahih Bukhari in Zahedan, southeast of Iran. They boasted that as many as 150,000 people attended the meeting. They have officially announced that Sahih Bukhari is so much reliable that making any research on it is just like a heresy. The announcement is accessible on the website of Zahedan’s Hawza Ilmiyya, sunninews. Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim which you regard as the most reliable books after the Qur’an do contain narratives proving the possibility of the Qur’an. What do you have to say now? I ask them to prepare one crushing and convincing response to this question instead of giving ten or twenty answers. I want them to avoid only mentioning the number of volumes or pages. It is not sufficient because these two books have been recently published in one-volume, two-volume, four-volume and eight-volume forms. The names of the related chapter and the section need to be referred to for sure. The narratives in the pair have been recently numbered too. There is a narrative from the second caliph, Omar Ibn al-Khatab, as part of one of his very last sermon which was made on return from Hajj pilgrimage to Medina, saying,
إن الله بعث محمدا (صلي الله عليه و سلم) بالحق و أنزل عليه الكتاب فكان مما أنزل الله آية الرجم، فقرأناها و عقلناها و وعيناها؛ فلذا رجم رسول الله (صلي الله عليه و سلم) و رجمنا بعده؛ فأخشي أن طال بالناس زمان أن يقول قائل والله ما نجد آية الرجم في كتاب الله فيضلوا بترك فريضة أنزلها الله و الرجم في كتاب الله حق علي من زني إذا أحصن من الرجال و النساء
One of the verses which was revealed to the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) was the verse of Rajm. We did recite it, ponder over it and abide by it. We practiced it because the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) did.
He said the verse of Rajm which used to be part of the Qur’an was,
الشيخ و الشيخة فارجموهما إذا زنيا
Stone to death any old man or old woman who committed adultery.
This is the verse he meant. Omar said that after the verse was revealed to the Prophet (PBUH), he recited it, pondered over it and abided by it. He practiced the order because the Prophet (PBUH) himself used to do so. He went on saying that there used to exist something else at the time of the Prophet (PBUH) in addition,
كنا نقرأ فيما نقرأ من كتاب الله:
أن لا ترغبوا عن آبائكم فأنه كفر بكم أن ترغبوا عن آبائكم
Muslims should not keep away from their ancestors. Growing weary of your ancestors is equal to infidelity.
The narration is so long, some two pages. In summary, Omar has claimed that such a verse was revealed to the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) but now it is not existent in the present copy of the Qur’an.
According to you, anyone who believes in the distortion of the Qur’an is in fact an infidel. Well, but Omar himself has announced that there had been such-and-such verse during the Prophet’s (PBUH) lifetime but it is now nonexistent. Where on earth has this verse gone to then? Who has erased it from the Qur’an? What do you have to say about this narrative?
The second similar Hadith is from Ayisha cited in Sahih Muslim,
قالت كان في ما أنزل من القرآن عشر رضعات معلومات يحرمن ثم نسخن بخمس معلومات فتوفي رسول الله (صلي الله عليه و سلم) و هن فيما يقرأ من القرآن
There existed a verse in the Qur’an saying that if a woman breastfed a stranger’s baby boy for ten times, she would be his foster mother. But the verse was cancelled later. Another verse replaced it saying that if a woman breastfed a stranger’s baby boy for five times, she would be his foster mother. This verse was part of the Qur’an as long as the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) was alive.
Surprisingly, we have neither عشر رضعات معلومات in the Qur’an, nor خمس رضعات معلومات.
Ok, Mr. Othman al-Khamis! Tell us where these verses have gone to? Show them to us. The quotation of Umm al-Momenin Ayisha is inside Sahih Muslim which you describe asاصح الكتب بعد القرآن (the best book after the Qur’an)
The third Hadith: Abu Mousa Ash’ari who is a distinguished scholar of yours and of whom you are so proud that nobody is allowed to find the slightest fault with him has claimed in Sahih Muslim, “Two chapters have been wholly deleted from the Qur’an”.
و إنا كنا نقرأ سورة، كنا نشبهها في الطول و الشدة ببراءة؛ فأنسيتها غير أني قد حفظت منها لو كان لإبن آدم واديان من مال لايبتغي واديا ثالثا و لا يملأ جوف إبن آدم إلا التراب؛ و كنا نقرأ سورة نشبهها بإحدي المسبحات؛ فأنسيتها غير أني حفظت منا يا أيها الذين آمنوا لم تقولون ما لا تفعلون فتكتب شهادة في أعناقكم فتسألون عنها يوم القيامة
There existed a chapter in the Qur’an which looked like the Chapter of Repentance both in length and strength. It has now slipped my mind. But the only verse of which has still remained in my memory is that if the son of Adam had two valleys filled with gold, he would strive to own a third one to multiply his possessions although nothing would eventually fill the hollowness of the son of Adam but soil (when he lies in his grave). There was another chapter which looked like Musbahat (one the five chapters beginning with words of praise for God). I can only remember one single verse of it. It says, “O believers! Why do you preach something that you cannot practice?”.
If you put these sentences beside the Quranic verses, you can easily tell that they are not by any means Quranic.
If based on the narratives in Kafi, it is claimed that one or two verses have been deleted from the Qur’an, your Sahih Muslim claims that two complete chapters, one in length of the Chapter of Repentance and the other similar to one of the Musbahat chapters were deleted. What are you going to answer about it? Whatever your answer is, it can be ours too in response to your question.
The only response and justification they make is
نسخ قرائتها و بقيت حكمها
They were some kinds of verses the recitation of which was revoked whereas its decree was held in place.
This is the only answer which Wahhabis try to teach to their children from their childhood.
With a quick look at Siyuti’s Itqan as well as Siyuti’s and Tabari’s Durr al-Manthur, you will be faced with the same very sentence. We have two answers to provide, one of which was given by Mr. Khoyi (God Bless Him). He said, “Was the recitation of such verses revoked during the Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) lifetime or after his demise? If it were at his time, why were they deleted then? You lack even one weak narrative to show that they were revoked at the Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) time. It is just the scholars’ underlying assumptions. If they were really deleted at a time when the Prophet (PBUH) was alive, you should give reasons for it. But if it occurred after his demise, then it is called the distortion of the Qur’an. This is distortion, pure and simple.” It is what Mr. Khoyi (God Bless Him) has said in al-Bayan. And the other answer which is absolutely understandable to all is,
Ayisha declares that a number of verses have been taken out of the Qur’an while Abu Mousa Ash’ari claims the entire deletion of some chapters from the holy book. Some even maintain that 200 verses were deleted from the Chapter of The Clans. And you allege that the recitation of the verses was revoked while its decree was held in place. Ok, as an example, show us a couple of verses whose recitation has been cancelled but its decree is still there. Which one of the religious laws cited in Sunni books has been already in the Qur’an with its recitation revoked but its decree still held in place?
The fourth answer: Please pay much attention to this one. Siyuti has quoted a narrative from Omar Ibn al-Khattab with a reliable chain of transmission.
بسند موثق عن عمر بن لخطاب، قالََََ: القرآن ألف ألف و سبع و عشرون حرف
The Qur’an which was revealed to the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) included a million and 27,000 letters altogether.
This narrative has been quoted in various books, the most considerable of which is Siyuti’s al-Itqan which is being taught at universities as a textbook. Now we ask Mr. Othman al-Khamis to tell us how many letters the present copy of the Qur’an which you are currently using has. Thanks to technology, you can easily count the letters by simply pressing a key button on your computer. It is 340,200 letters altogether. One of the most well-known and greatest interpreters, Imam Qurtabi, whose four sects you warmly hail, has said that Hujjaj Ibn Yusuf Thaqafi summoned all memorizers, reciters and ascribes of the Qur’an to inform them of the number of letters of the book. The narrator, Salam Abu Mohammad al-Hamani, said he was also present there. “I myself counted the letters and let Hujjaj know that the present copy compiled by Othman includes 340,740 letters”. 
Thus, the Qur’an did have 340,740 letters during Omar’s caliphate but what he himself pointed out was a million and 27,000 letters. Two thirds of the Qur’an were deleted. Where have they all gone to? You claim,
نسخ قرائتها و بقيت حكمها
Their related verses were revoked while their decrees were held in place.
Given that we accept this claim but where are the laws whose related verses were cancelled but their decrees were held in place? Show us at least one weak narrative to substantiate your claim. You do not have any, of course.
In a similar case, the second caliph has said himself,
كم تعدون سورة الأحزاب؟ قلت ثنتين أو ثلاثا و سبعين، قال إن كانت لتقارب سورة البقرة 
How many verses does the Chapter of The Clans have? I replied, “72 or 73 verses”. Omar said, the Chapter of The Clans formerly had as many verses as the Chapter of The Cow”.
It means that it included 286 verses. Where have 200 verses gone to then? Omar was not playing a joke at that moment, was he? Were they deleted during the Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) lifetime or after his demise? In case they were revoked where are their decrees then? This very narrative has various sources as many as thirty or forty.
‘Akrama who is said to have been a student of Ibn Abbas’, whom you give your full approval to, has said,
 كانت سورة الأحزاب مثل سورة البقرة أو أطول و كان فيها آية الرجم
The Chapter of The Clans was as lengthy as the Chapter of The Cow, maybe even longer. And the verse of Rajm [that we earlier discussed] was in this chapter.
Hakim Neishaburi has also quoted a similar narrative from Abi Ibn Ka’b as saying,
 قال كانت سورة الأحزاب توازي سورة البقرة
The Chapter of the Clans is parallel with the Chapter of The Cow.
Both Abi Ibn Ka’b and Ayisha are quoted by Ahmad Ibn Hanbal in Masnad, vol. 5, p. 132 to have said so.
Well, where on earth have those 200 verses of the Chapter of The Clans gone then? Your answer would be ours in response to your opposite question.
How come if a Shia claimed that ten narratives concerning Wilayat had been deleted or if there had been a narrative on the distortion of the Qur’an, he would have to prove it but you can easily justify what you have in Sahihayn!
If justification is acceptable to your eyes, so justify both your own narratives and ours. And if no, an attack is good, then you keep attacking us and we will do so too. Now, we are making our appeal in media. We warmly welcome to hold a debate with anyone who is open to negotiations and is ready to answer our questions. Of course, we are looking for a response other than what Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalani has made in Fath al-Bari, or what Mr. Nuri has said in explanation of Sahih Muslim. Imam Shafe’I and some other individuals have also given some sort of answers but they do not even seem convincing to your own educated people much less to us.
We, as Shias, are of this belief that the present copy of the Qur’an was compiled during the Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) lifetime at his behest. The Opening became the first chapter of the Qur’an and Mankind was chosen as the last chapter by order of the Holy Prophet (PBUH). There are some Makki verses in Madani Surahs (chapters revealed in Medina) while some Madani verses are in Makki Surahs (chapters revealed in Mecca). We voice our opposition to any Shia scholar who believes in the otherwise. The Qur’an which was compiled under the supervision of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) and was recited by people was the one which the Prophet (PBUH) referred to as,
إني تارك فيكم الثقلين كتاب الله و عترتي
Or based on your belief,
كتاب الله و سنتي
If this book was only held in people’s memory, or only written on leaflets, scrapes of leather, thin flat wood or clays, how could it ever be named a book? A book needs to have been compiled with a specific opening, ending and a cover in order to be called a book. When the Holy Prophet (PBUH) says كتاب الله, it clearly conveys that it was originally compiled, existed and read by people in form of a book.
If a Christian hears such a thing, he will laugh at us for sure. He would sneer at us saying that the Qur’an you possess was compiled by Sahaba (companions) rather than by your prophet himself. “So how do you dare to criticize us because the Bible and the Torah were written after Jesus and Moses while you claim the same?”, they will ask.
‘Azim Abadi has quoted a narrative in ‘Awn al-Ma’bud which has been cited in as many as 50 other Sunni books as well,
أول من جمع القرآن أبو بكر و كتبه زيد بن ثابت، وكان الناس يأتون زيد بن ثابت فكان لا يكتب آية إلا بشاهدي عدل، و إن آخر سورة براءة لم توجد إلا مع خزيمة بن ثابت فقال اكتبوها فإن رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم جعل شهادته بشهادة رجلين فكتب، و إن عمر أتى بآية الرجم فلم يكتبها لأنه كان وحده
It was at the time of Abubakr when the existing various copies of the Qur’an were being collected. Zeid Ibn Thabit was responsible to compile a new copy of the Qur’an. Every verse was approved once two witnesses testified that it was certainly revealed to the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him). Omar Ibn al-Khattab came up with a verse. He claimed that he was certain that the verse was revealed to the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him). When asked whether he had two witnesses. He replied that he had only one. Zeid Ibn Thabit, the supervising board as well as Abubakr rejected the verse and said it would be included in the Qur’an only when he brought two eyewitnesses to prove his claim. After a while, Omar returned with the verse of Rajm, again with only one witness. Some time later, he came up with a last verse of the Chapter of The Repentance. When asked who the witnesses were. He answered, “Khazimat Ibn Thabit.” The verse was rejected because he had only one eyewitness. But he said that man could stand for two witnesses when the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) was alive. He was turned away, however.
Sahih Tarmazi has confirmed the narrative above as a sound one. Mottaqi Hindi has also referred to it as هذا صحيح in Kanz al-‘Ummal, vol. 5, p. 430. Ahmad Ibn Idris Shafei has certified in his book, quoting Omar as saying,
والذي نفسي بيده لولا أن يقول الناس زاد عمر في كتاب الله، لكتبتها
I swear by God in whose control my life is. If I had not been afraid of people to blame me for adding a verse to the Qur’an, I would have definitely inserted the verse of Rajm in it.
And according to Umm al-Momenin Ayisha,
قد نزلت آية الرجم و رضاعة الكبيرة عشرا و لقد كان في صحيفة تحت سريرتي، فلما مات رسول الله (صلي الله عليه و سلم) تشاغلنا بموته، دخل داجن فأكلها
When the verse of Rajm and Rida’a Kabir was revealed to the Holy Prophet (Peace be Upon Him), we wrote it on a leaflet and put it under my bed. But right after the Holy Prophet (Peace be Upon Him) passed away and when we were busy mourning for him, a goat came in and ate it up.
A story is attributed to Ayisha as saying that in case a woman breastfed a male adult in his thirties, for example, for ten or five times, she would become Mahram (unmarriageable kin). We stop it right here and avoid carrying it on because such stories seem endless.
Many lexiconists like Ibn Athir, Ibn Fars, Taj al-‘Arus and Lisan al-‘Arab and so on have all attributed the above-mentioned Hadith to Ayisha. There is an Arabic proverb saying,
من كان بيته من زجاج، فلا يرم بيوت الناس الحجر
He who lives in a glass house shouldn 't throw stones.
How come these guys can’t see a big nail in their own eyes but magnify a tiny thorn in the Shia eye! There is much to say and much to reveal in this domain. But it is not good to spill the beans more than this.
Dr. Seyyed Mohammad Hosseini Qazvini
Name: Majid M. Ali; Date: Feb. 13, 2007
Hello. I can swear that if Mr. Othman Khamis were aware of the roasted lamb beforehand, he would confess at the very first session that Shias never ever believed in the distortion of the Qur’an.
Name: Yazdan; Date: Apr. 8, 2008
The corrupted nature of the Wahhabis has been well revealed for all Muslims, including both Shias and Sunnis. You’d be better off not paying any heed to such a politically-motivated and UK-backed sect.
That’s why a Sunni friend called on people to differentiate between Wahhabis and Sunnis as Bahaism is quite distinct from Shiism. It is absolutely true. But Wahhabis seem even more corrupt and dissolute than Bahais.
Name: Hi; Date: Jul. 18, 2008
How about the Hadiths from our Imams cited in Bihar al-Anwar and Koleini’s as well as Sheikh Abbas Qomi’s books which prove the distortion of the Qur’an and the deletion of the name of the Shia Aimma from it? Would you please explain about it?
Dear friend, the narratives you are talking about are not even one tenth of the narratives that Sunnis have about the distortion of the Qur’an. Moreover, the narratives concerning the distortion have been cited in Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim which Sunnis regard as reliable. But Shia scholars unanimously admit that the ones quoted in Shia books are weak and unreliable. For further information, see the following link,
Name: Mahsa; Date: Oct. 19, 2008
I could not agree more with Yazdan on the fact that all people are well acquainted with the Wahhabi nature. And they know well how the sect was initially formed. But in my opinion we should not forget about them and let them say and do whatever they like against Shiism. Far from emotions, we’d better encounter them through following up logic and reasoning to be able to defend our beliefs which enjoy a strong framework. By the way, I recommend all reading Ayatollah Khoyi’s al-Bayan. Thank you.
Name: Mohammad, Mahdi & Moin; Date: Apr. 27, 2009
It is awesome.
Name: A Shia; Date: Jul. 27, 2009
The answers you have given are generally suitable for negotiations with Sunnis. They do not seem so applicable for me as a Shia. For instance, given that the distortion of the Qur’an is an inalienable part of the Sunni doctrine and all Sunnis, young and old, have faith in it. It has nothing to do with me, however. I am eager to get informed of the related narratives in our own books and read the materials written in rejection of Shia scholars who believed in the burning of the Qur’an, for instance. That’s because there are a lot of quotations on the web from Sunnis and Wahhabis. They have quoted much from figures like Sheikh Mufid, Sheikh Na’mani, the writer of Kitab al-Ghayba, or even Nuri who has written Fasl al-Khitab. For example, they have quoted Muhadith Nuri as saying that two chapters of Nurayn and Wilayat as well as the names of Aimma have been deleted from the Qur’an. You might react by saying that if Nuri claims two chapters were deleted, Sunnis refer to the deletion of 10 or 20 chapters. I don’t care. I just need answers to my own questions not for debates with Sunnis.
Dear friend, Muhadith Nuri’s viewpoint was fully discussed along the lecture. Apparently, you just raised your own question and left this message before reading the text above. If you need a much more comprehensive response, you can read Ayatollah Khoyi’s al-Bayan.
Name: Behrooz; Date: Sep. 10, 2009
Hello dear friends. May God accept your worship!
I have also created a web log in order to answer questions and doubts about the Qur’an. Please see my web log and let me know of your opinions about it. Ya Ali.
Name: Tahmasibi; Date: Nov. 12, 2009
Could you please enumerate the Sunni scholars who have denied that Shias believe in the distortion of the Qur’an?
Hello. Dear friend,
Yes a number of Sunni scholars have been fair enough to admit such a reality. Sheikh Mohammad Abu Zuhre has said,
القرآن بإجماع المسلمين هو حجة الإسلام الأولي و هو مصدر له، و هو سجل شريعته، و هو الذي يشتمل علي كلها و قد حفظه الله تعلي الي يوم الدين كما وعد سبحانه اذ قال: «انا نحن نزلنا الذكر و إنا له لحافظون» و إن إخواننا الامامية علي اختلاف منازعهم يرونه كما يراه كل مؤمنين.
(Al-Imam al-Sadiq, Mohammad Abu Zohre, p. 296)
And according to Dr. Mohammad Abdullah Diraz,
و مهما يكن من أمر فإن هذا المصحف هو الوحيد المتداول في العالم الاسلامي، بما فيه فرق الشيعة، و منذ ثلاثة عشر قرناً من الزمان، و نذكر هنا رأي الشيعة الامامية ـ أهم فرق الشيعة
(Madkhal Ila al-Qur’an al-Karim, pp. 39-40)
Sheikh Rahmatullah al-Hindi has also said,
القرآن المجيد عند جمهور علماء الشيعة الامامية الاثني عشرية محفوظ من التغيير و التبديل، و من قال منهم بوقوع النقصان فيه، فقوله مردود غير مقبول عندهم
(Izhar al-Haq, Ta’liq al-Duktur Ahmad Hijazi, p. 431)
Sheikh Mohammad al-Ghazali believed,
سمعت من هؤلاء يقول في مجلس علم: إنّ للشيعة قرآنا آخر يزيد و ينقص عن قرآننال المعروف فقلت له: أين هذا القرآن ؟ و لماذا لم يطّلع الإنس و الجن علي نسخة منه خلال هذا الدهر الطويل ؟ لماذا يساق هذا الافتراء... ولماذا هذا الكتاب علي الناس و علي الوحي
(Difa’ ‘An al-‘Aqida wa al-Shari’a, pp. 253 & 264, Published in Egypt, 1975, 4th edition)
Professor Mohammad al-Madini, a faculty member of the Shari’at Faculty, in al-Azhar University is of this belief,
و أما أن الامامية يعتقدون نقص القرآن، فمعاذ الله. إنما هي روايات رويت في كتبهم، كما روي مثلها في كتبنا. و اهل التحقيق من الفريقين قد زيّفوها، و بينوا بطلانها و ليس في الشيعة الإمامية أو الزيديه من يعتقد ذلك كما أنه ليس في السنة من يعتقده
(The Journal of Risalat al-Islam, No. 4, year, 11, pp. 382-383)
And al-Bihinsawi, one of the top figures of the Muslim Brotherhood has also said,
إنّ الشيعة الجعفرية الاثني عشرية يرون كفر من حرّف القرآن الذي أجمعت عليه الأمة منذ صدر الاسلام. .. و إنّ المصحف الموجود بين أهل السنة هو نفسه الموجود في مساجد و بيوت الشيعة
(Al-Sinat al-Muftari ‘Alayha, p. 60)
And Mustafa al-Rafi’i’s view is as follows,
و القرآن الكريم هو الموجود الآن بأيدي الناس من غيز زيادة و لا نقصان. و ما ورد من أن الشيعة الامامية يقولون بأن القرآن قد اعتراه النقص. .. هذا الادّعاء أنكره مجموع علماء الشيعة الأعلام. ...
فالقرآن الكريم ـاذنـ هو عصب الدولة الاسلامية، تتفق مذاهب أهل السنة مع مذهب الشيعة الامامية علي قداسته و وجوب الأخذ به. و هو نسخة موحدة لا تختلف في حرف و لا رسم لدي السنة و الشيعة الامامية في مختلف ديارهم و أمصارهم
(Islamina, p. 75)
Dr. Ali ‘Abdul Wahid has said,
يعتقد الشيعة الجعفرية كما يعتقد أهل السنة، أن القرآن الكريم هو كلام الله عزوجل المنزل علي رسوله المنقول بالتواتر و المدوّن بين دفتي المصحف بسورة و آياته المرتبة بتوقيف من الرسول صلوات الله و سلامه عليه، و أنهالجامع لأصول الاسلام عقائده و شرايعه و أخلاقه، و الخلاف بيننا و بينهم في هذا الصدد يتمثل في أمور شكلية و جانبية لا تمس النص القرآني بزيادة و لانقص و لا تحريف و لاتبديل، و لا تثريب عليهم في اعتقادها
(Bayn al-Shi’a wa Ahl al-Sunna, p. 35)
Elsewhere in the same book he has added,
أما ما ورد في بعض مؤلفاتهم من آراء تثير شكوكاً في النص القرآني و تنسب إلي بعض أئمتهم، فإنهم لايقرونها و يعتقدون بطلان ما تذهب إليه، و بطلان نسبتها إلي أئمتهم. و لا تصح كما قلنا فيما سبق أن نحاسبهم علي آراء حكموا هم ببطلانها و بطلان نسبتها إلي أئمتهم و لا أن نعدها من مذهبهم، مهما كانت مكانة رواتها عندهم و مكانة الكتب التي وردت فيها. ..
وقد تصدى كثير من أئمة الشيعة الجعفرية أنفسهم لرد هذه الأخبار الكاذبة وبيان بطلانها وبطلان نسبتها إلى أئمتهم وأنها ليست من مذهبهم في شئ.
(Bayn al-Shi’a wa Ahl al-Sunna, pp. 37-38)
Name: Tarud; Date: Nov. 10, 2010, 13:30:16
Why didn’t God create all things in peace to let us feel at ease? What and to whom did He really want to prove?
Hello, dear friend, God intended to create a creature that is able to cope with difficult situations and pass the exams he takes. Going to the Heaven without any attempt and without taking any tests is worthless. Coming successful out of thorny time and situations and getting rewarded with the Heaven is much more worthwhile than going into theParadise without experiencing any hardships. Good Luck
Name: Ismail; Date: Mar. 5, 2010, 14:01:25
Hi, last night, I was watching the channel of ???. A Jewish-like man under the guise of a Shia was talking of different issues about the Qur’an. But very stealthily did he try to make the viewers believe that the Qur’an has been distorted. Soon I realized that the objective of the channel was nothing but to inculcate such a belief. But it was not done in dress of a foe but under the guise of a Shia friend. .And I am deeply sorry for those Shias who get deceived and ask his to pray for them.
Name: Mahdi Taqavi; Date, Feb. 7, 2007
Hello and many thanks to Professor Qazvini who brings different issues under scrutiny. The discussions inform many people on the one hand and dismiss the false and baseless beliefs of the enemies of Ahl al-Bayt on the other hand. Above all, they make the Imam of the Time (AS) pleased. I hope such dear scholars get well appreciated. At the end, I feel it necessary to thank all staff of this website.
Name: Jawad; Date, May, 5, 2008
Bravo Mr. Qazvini! Good job! Since I ran into your website, I have decided to go study in Hawza. Bravo!
Name: Farman Ali Masumi; Date, May, 12, 2008
Hello. I really appreciate your responses. It has been eight years that I was looking for answers to my questions. Now I have just uncovered hidden treasure.
Name: Hamid Reza Zade; Date: Nov. 25, 2008
Hi and many thanks to you. It is a long time that I have been doing researches on the narratives of distortion in Sunni sources. Please help me with this and send me your advice. I really appreciate it.
Hello dear friend, if the distortion which has occurred in Sunni books is what you mean, we have prepared an article and will soon publish it on the site. And if you have any examples showing the distortion inside the Sunni books, please send them to us so that we can use them in the article. In return, we will also provide you with our findings. Good Luck.
Name: A Sistani fighter; Date: Apr. 11, 2009
With best regards to the great Shia man, Hazrat Ayatollah Qazvini. May God protect you! I always pray for your health. Indeed, no sane Muslim can ever flee from the logic and reasoning behind the Shia school of thought unless he himself intentionally wants to escape due to his ignorance or to create a dispute. I kiss your hand from afar, Hazrat Ayatollah Qazvini and pray for you and all other true Shias! الله اكبر (God is the greatest)! لا اله الا الله (there is no God but Allah) and يا علي .
Name: Amir Hussein; Date: May, 22, 2009
I wish health for you and may Ali give you assistance!
گويند سنگ لعل شود در مقام صبر آري شود و ليک به خون جگر شود تعجيل در فرجش
Name: Ferdows; Date: Feb. 12, 2009
I am currently studying in Europe. I really take advantage of your discussions. May God grant you a long life! I wish you health and success. The Google translate is acting really weak. Its translation is full of mistakes. Please have the discussed issues translated into English so that we can avail ourselves of it. I thank you wholeheartedly. Peace be upon Mohammad and his family and may God hasten their appearance.
Name: Gholam Reza; Date: Sep. 14, 2010- 09:36:54
You claim that you do not believe in swearing at Sahaba. But why do you keep labeling them this much in media, on pulpits and podiums. You liken those who sowed seeds of discord in the election to them.
Name: Majid, M. Ali; Date: Sep. 14, 2010- 11:22:32
Hello Gholam Reza. We never curse the Sahaba who were believers and real Muslims. We do curse the Sahaba who were infidels and hypocrites. We are not like you unable to differentiate between believer and hypocrite; between Muslims and infidels. We respect all companions of the Holy prophet unless they were from among hypocrites or infidels.
Name: Hussein; Date: Jan. 18, 2010- 11:00:41
Hello. May the lady of the two worlds, Siddiqa Tahira (AS) award you!
. Chapter of The Criterion: 63
. Chapter of Those who drag forth: 24
. Chapter of Ta-ha: 44
. Chapter of Family of Imran: 159
. Nahj al-Balagha, Sermon 206
. Chapter of The Criterion: 63
. Chapter of The Criterion: 72
. Likebrit al-Ahmar, p. 143
. Rouh al-Ma’ani, vol. 1, p. 24
. Sahih Bukhari, p. 8, p. 26, H. 6918, Kitab al-Muharibin, Bab Rajm al-Halabi.
. Sahih Muslim, vol. 4, p. 167, H. 3487, Kitab al-Rida’, Bab Tahrim Bi Khams Rida’at
. Sahih Muslim, vol. 3, p. 100, H. 2466, Kitab al-Zakat, Bab Lo An Libn Adam wa Adeen.
. Al-Itqan al-Siyuti, vol. 1, p. 121-Majma’ al-Zawayid al-Heythami, vol. 7, p. 163- al-Durr al-Manthur, vol. 6, p. 422- al-Mu’jam al-Awsat Lil Tabarani, vol. 6, p. 361- al-Jami’ al-Saghir Lil Siyuti, vol. 2, p. 264.
. Tafsir Qurtabi, vol. 1, p. 64.
. Durr al-Manthur, vol. 5, p. 180.
. Durr al-Manthur, vol. 5, p. 180
. Mustadrak, vol. 2, p. 415.
. Mustadrak Hakim, vol. 3, pp. 109 &148- Sunan Beihi, vol. 7, p. 30- Majma’ al-Zawayid Heithami, vol. 9. p. 163- Sunan Nisai, vol. 5, p. 45- Mu’jam Awsat Tabarani, vol. 3, p. 374- Tafsir Ibn Kathir, vol. 4, p. 122- Tafsir Alusi, vol. 3, p. 156, etc.
. Mustadrak Hakim, vol. vol. 1, p. 93- Sunan Beihi, vol. 10, p. 114- Sunan Dar Qatani, vol. 4, p. 160- Jami’ al-Saghir Siyuti, vol. 1, p. 505- Mizan al-I’tidal Thahabi, vol. 2, p. 302, etc.
. ‘Awn al-Ma’bud al-‘Azim Abadi, vol. 10, p. 20- al-Itqan fi ‘Ulum al-Qur’an Siyuti, vol. 1, p. 163.
. Ikhtilaf al-Hadith Shafe’I, p. 533- Neil al-Awtar Showkani, vol. 9, p. 196- Sahih Bukhari, vol. 8, p. 113- Sunan Kubra Beihi, vol. 8, p. 213- Fath al-Bari Ibn Hajar, vol. 12, p. 127
. Sunan Dar Qatani, vol. 4, p. 105, Kitab al-Rida’- Sunan Ibn Maja, vol. 1, p. 626- al-Mahalli Ibn Hazm, vol. 11, p. 236- Mu’jam Awsat Tabarani, vol. 8, p. 12- Durr al-Manthur Siyuti, vol. 2, p. 135- Masnad Abi Ya’la, vol. 4, p. 323.