Posted by: Dawud Israel | March 12, 2010

The Quran in North America: What if…


I was thinking to myself the other day about the impact of the Quran. I think after 1400 years, its time to do a little assessment and realize how vast it’s impact has been and how accommodating it truly is.

-If the Quran hadn’t mentioned the Prophets and stories of ordinary human beings…how would it affect us?

-If the Quran hadn’t mentioned the ayahs on Ahlul Kitab…what would the state of the world be?

-If the Quran didn’t mention jihad and thereby regulate warfare, leaving it to our own invention…what would we have done?

How drastically different would the world be!

Its really amazing how single verses have shifted history. In North Africa, the ayahs on ribat, lead to the building of fortresses for the protection and guarding the lands of the Muslims. The ayahs about Jannah lead to the design of Islamic architecture throughout the world. More recently, in India, the ayahs about 40 days kick start the whole global movement for the Tableeghi guys. There are countless examples of how the Quran has shaped world history. Just think of how the gradual revelation of the Quran dictated the Islamic development of early Mecca and Madina. In the same way, it has continued from then until now, to be that force of Islamic development throughout the world.

All of these things, happened in different times in history and people have different views on them. But one thing is clear: they all came from the Quran and somehow in someway, the Qur’an was appropriated and absorbed into these communities. It becomes inseparable from history (or in Islamic terminology, Qadr). It is as if there was a verse specifically in the Qur’an, much like a computer code, just waiting to manifest itself on the world in a certain, very momentous way, for certain communities.

So what ayah do you think fits North America? What ayahs will characterize Islam in the West? What ayahs will shape our destiny here?


To help you think consider: if all the Muslims in the world vanished overnight what traces would remain of their existence? If all the Muslims in North America vanished overnight, what traces of our existence would remain?

Do we really understand the power of the Quran? I say this because it seems we routinely underestimate the heavy weight of Allah’s Kitab. Many intelligent Muslims are searching for fancy solutions with modern terminology or sloganeering the ‘Quran is enough’ and leaving it at that, forgetting the inherent divine power in the words of the Quran. And then leave it for the misguided to misuse. Do we really understand the power of the Quran?

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