Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Did the King James Version of the Bible change the world?

Did the King James Version of the Bible change the world?  Bill McKenzie of Dallas Morning News asks this question, here is my take:

Even if Jesus, Muhammad, Krishna, Buddha, Confucius, Moses and the others had the opportunity to print the holy books when they began their missions, the Bible and the Qur'aan would have remained the most influential books in changing the world.

Both the books inspire the followers to believe that the word of God must be spread to all corners of the world. Even though Buddhism was taken up by Asoka, one of the greatest kings of his time who sent emissaries around the world to preach the word of enlightenment, it did not add adherents as fast as the other two perhaps because it addressed the enlightenment within an individual whereas community building was the focus of Christianity and Islam. Since Hinduism does not have the conversion component, it still remains in the top slot mainly because it is one of the oldest religions.

As a pluralist who believes in the divinity of all religions as the pathways to becoming part of the larger energy called God, I believe Qur'aan seems to be the book that leads the pack in changing the world, while the Bible runs toe to toe for many reasons; the biggest of all the reasons was reliance on the book.

Prophet Muhammad was crystal clear in his last sermon, to paraphrase him, "O People, I am leaving this book and my practices to you, that is all you need to know to lead a moral life, and you cannot go wrong with it if you follow them." The responsibility to be a good human being was placed directly on shoulders of the individuals and hence reliance on the book.

Neither Jesus nor Muhammad encouraged the establishment of clergy; it was between the individual and the creator. Indeed, many Christians and Muslims refer to the book more frequently than the followers of other religions. The profession of clergy was bound to happen with a need for getting the word of God out.

The Muslim prayers require one to recite at least a few chapters during the prayers and without an exception every one of the 1.6 billion Muslims can recite at least five chapters, and about 5% of the Muslims have memorized the whole Qur'aan; word for word.

The phrase "People of the book" was indeed coined by Prophet Muhammad, meaning those who follow a book to live a moral life. The emphasis was on the book. The King James Version of the Bible certainly became available to the masses bolstered by the printing press and it will continue to be number one book in hands of the people.

A majority of Muslims, if not all, start every activity of their day by invoking the blessing of God and place themselves under the trust of God. As a result I place Qur'aan as the book that has changed most people.

Mike Ghouse
12 Opinions including mine are included in this piece at Dallas Morning News;


1 comment:

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Voice of Moderate Muslims

Voice of Moderate Muslims
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Moderate Islam Speaker

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quraan burning

Planned Muslim Response to Qur'an Burning by Pastor Jones on September 11 in Mulberry, Florida

August 19, 2013| Dallas, Texas

Mike Ghouse
Text/Talk: (214) 325-1916

Mirza A Beg
(205) 454-8797



We as Muslims plan to respond to pastor Terry Jones' planned burning of 3000 copies of Quran on September 11, 2013 in positive terms.

Our response - we will reclaim the standard of behavior practiced by the Prophet concerning “scurrilous and hostile criticism of the Qur’an” (Muhammad Asad Translation Note 31, verse 41:34). It was "To overcome evil with good is good, and to resist evil by evil is evil." It is also strongly enjoined in the Qur’an in the same verse 41:34, “Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.”

God willing Muslims will follow the divine guidance and pray for the restoration of Goodwill, and on that day many Muslim organizations will go on a “blood drive” to save lives and serve humanity with kindness.

We invite fellow Americans of all faiths, races, and ethnicities to join us to rededicate the pledge, “One nation under God”, and to build a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of fellow Americans. This event is a substitute for our 10th Annual Unity Day Celebration (www.UnitydayUSA.com) held in Dallas, but now it will be at Mulberry, Florida.

Unwittingly Pastor Jones has done us a favor by invigorating us by his decision to burn nearly 3000 copies Quran on September 11, 2013. Obviously he is not satisfied by the notoriety he garnered by burning one Qur'an last year.

As Muslims and citizens we honor the free speech guaranteed in our constitution. We have no intentions to criticize, condemn or oppose Pastor Terry Jones' freedom of expression. Instead, we will be donating blood and praying for goodness to permeate in our society.

We plan to follow Jesus Christ (pbuh), a revered prophet in Islam as well as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – that of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing good will for the common good of the society.

We hope, this event and the message will remind Muslims elsewhere in the world as well, that violence is not the way. Muslims, who react violently to senseless provocation, should realize that, violence causes more violence, and besmirches the name of the religion that we hold so dear. We believe that Prophet Muhammad was a mercy to the mankind, and we ought to practice what we believe and preach. We must not insult Islam by the negative reactions of a few.

We can only hope it will bring about a change in the attitude of the followers of Pastor Jones, and in the behavior of those Muslims who reacted violently the last time Pastor sought notoriety – We hope this small step towards a bridge to peaceful coexistence would propel us towards building a cohesive society.

Like most Americans a majority of Muslims quietly go about their own business, but it is time to speak up and take positive action instead of negative reaction. May this message of peace and goodwill reverberate and reach many shores.

Lastly, we appreciate the Citizens of Mulberry, Florida, Honorable Mayor George Hatch, City Commissioners, police and Fire Chiefs for handing this situation very well. This will add a ‘feather of peace’ in the City’s reputation. We hope Mulberry will be a catalyst in showing the way in handling conflict with dignity and peace.

We thank the Media for giving value to the work towards peace rather than conflict.

URL- http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2013/08/planned-muslim-response-to-quran_18.html

Thank you.


The people in Dallas are making an effort to understand and clean their own hearts first, when we are free from bias, it would be easy to share that with others. Islam teaches us in so many ways to "respect the otherness of others" and it is time we find simple practical ways of doing it.