The name or title of a book gives the first impression and is worthy of note, `for the writer usually chooses a name or title best suited to it. It should make the reader interested enough to make him want to read on. But the name should either be familiar or arresting; the reader`s attention can be picked up by giving the book a name that is nearest its concern or that has definite human interest, elucidating the subject discussed. The Veda, Torah,Gospels, Dhmmapad and Zend Avesta and other similar names of the sacred Books are most significant.We admire and honour them from the core of our heart, notwithstanding the fact that these are not revealed names.
The name Veda is derived from the root ‘vid' (to know, to think, to be) It is used frequently as a verb in RigVeda (more than 55 times). As a noun it means riches or wealth [of the enemy], as in Rigveda 3:53:14.
What do the cattle for thee among the Kikatas:they yield no milk ,they need not the vesel (for the libation) bring them to us :(bring also ) the wealth of Pramagand and give us the possessions of the low branches of the communty(of the people of low status) [Rigveda 3:53:14]
Nowhere in the Veda, it has been used as s proper name of a book.On the other hand there are so many books on art which are called Vedas as Ayur veda,Sarp Veda i.e the book: of medicine, snakes.. The term Rigveda is not to be found in the scripture itself.
The name Torah is of "Ten Commandments". The so-called Gospel as a book was never uttered by Jesus. Dhammapad is not a pencraft of Buddha. No one knows the revealed name of Zend Avesta or Avestazend, not even correct pronunciation of the name of its author.
The name al-Quran, the proper name of the sacred Book of Muslims, is not imposed on it by doctors of law. It has been given by the Lord Himself and occurs more than fifty times in the Book itself. The word Quran is an infinitive noun from the root Qara, primarily meaning "he collected things together.
Another significant meaning of the word "Quran" is a large reservoir in which collect water from all sides. A great lexicographer Raghib says:the term Quran means a reservoir to which all the surrounding waters rush, and the Book is called Qur’an because all the previous scriptures are drawn together in it.The Quran is a collection of the best religious teachings of all the sacred books. It is plainly stated in the Quran itself: "A messenger from Allah reciting purified pages containing all right scriptures. All right directions necessary for the guidance of man, whether previously revealed or not, are to be met with in the Quran .The Holy Quran thus claims to contain all the good points of other sacred books, and in addition supplies their deficiencies.
Divine Promise of Protection.
The Holy Qur’an was revealed piecemeal in a long period of twenty-three years. The art of writing was then, still in its infancy throughout the world. It was given from the Lord to an unlettered person among a most illiterate people, but it was written, collected, memorised and copied by several persons from the first to the last verse, in the lifetime of the Holy Prophet, This is a unique and unprecedented, historical fact. No other sacred scripture could maintain its original purity. It was not an accident or just a matter of chance; it was predicted beforehand as it is emphasised.
We have, without doubt, sent down the Quran ; and We will assuredly guard it (from corruption).15-9
And this is one of the most wonderful prophecies,fulfilment of which is and will ever remain a standing testimony to the truth of the Holy Qur’an. Thefulfilment of this prophecy is so evident that a great orientslist like Max Muller corroborates it and hostile writer like Muir admits:
"That there is probably in the world no other book which has remained twelve centuries(now above 14) with so pure a text.(Muir’s -Life of Muhammad). And to indorse the verdict of another Christian writer, VonHammer, " that we hold the Quran to be as sorely Muhammad word, as the mohammadan held it to be to be God words
Many other verses of the Holy Quran which contain similar promises regarding the Holy Book. Thus in the forty-first chapter Verse 41-42 of the Holy Quran we read :
Those who reject the Message when it comes to them (are not hidden from Us). And indeed it is a Book of exalted power. No falsehood can approach it from before or behind it: It is sent down by One Full of Wisdom, Worthy of all Praise .
This and such other verses Clearly show that the Holy Quran announced in the very beginning the Divine promise of its protection from all kinds of destruction, corruption or alteration i.Hence from the earliest times the Muslims have looked, upon these verses as containing a promise that the Holy Quran shall be perfectly guarded against all attacks to destroy it or to alter its text. Thus both Mujahid and Qatada, the earliest authorties on commentary, agree in this interpretation of both these verses, and state that by guarding the Quran and by not allowing falsehood to approach the holy Book from before or behind , it is meant that no word shall be added to it which is not part of the Divine revelation and no word shall be omitted from it which is part of the Divine revelation, granted to the Holy Prophet, Mohammad.
Now some people may contend that the existence of a promise does not prove its fulfilment and hence the promise itself is not an evidence. This is, no doubt, true, but there are other circumstances which, when considered in connection with the promise itself, afford a conclusive proof of its fulfilment. If the promise had not been fulfilled, and there had been any alteration in the text of the Holy Quran, one of two things must have happened, viz., either those who had witnessed these alterations would have lost their faith in the Holy Quran as the Word of God or they would have given some interpretation other than the interpretation to the verses quoted above But that neither of these things happened we know for certain. The earliest authorities like Mujahid and Qatada, as we have already shown consider these verses to contain a promise that the text of the Holy Quran shall never be tampered with, and no other meaning is mentioned by any of the earlier authorities.
Muslims of all generations have laid great stress upon this promise. Its existence combined with a few other historical circumstances of unqestionnble truth accords the strongest proof that the text of the Holy Book has never been tampered with. There is another consideration which affords indirect evidence of the fullfilment of this promise, At one and the same time two important promises of protection were made to the Holy Prophet, one a promise of protecting the Prophet against the evil designs and the attacks of his enemies, and the other a promise of protecting the text of the Holy Quran from being tempered with. The fulfilment of the first promise related to the life ·time of the Holy Prophet and that of the second to the time which followed his death. The mission of the Prophet was confronted with two great dangers, viz , that the Holy Prophet should be killed by his enemies and thus the work which he had begun and the Divine revelation which was granted to him should remain incomplete, or that after his death the Holy Book should be changed end altered as had been the case with the previous books. But the mission of the Holy Prophet was safe guarded against both these dangers by the two promises referred to above Now it is easy to see that the fullfilment of the first promise was far more diiicult than that of the second, but no one can deny that it was clearly fulfilled. Various attempts were made upon the life of the Holy Prophet both at Mecca and at Medina but they were all brought., The fulfilment of this promise in the life-time of the Holy Prophet was an assurance to his companions that the second promise would also be fulfilled, for the Mighty God who could frustrate all the designs of powerful enemies against a helpless and solitary man to fulfil the promise concerning the safety of the Holy Prophet could not fail to bring to fulfilment the equally important promise of guarding the Holy Quran against any alteration The fulfilment of these two promises clearly establishes the Divine origin of the word which contains them.
It is my objective in the upcoming articles to show that the Holy Quran as in our hands is a faithful reproduction of the text as left by the Holy Prophet and that the present arrangement of `its chapters and verses was directed by the Holy Prophet himself.
The subsequent parts of article will deal out subects like - Preservation through writing, the text of the Holy Quran was safe in memory, the arrangement of the verses in each chapter, and that of the chapters themselves, was effected in the life-time of the Holy Prophet in accordance with his directions, compilation in the time of Abu Bakr And Uthman and at last answering allegations against the Quran.