The Qur'an is free of contradictions

Q 3: It is said that the various Qira’at (recitation styles) of the Qur’an may lead to differences in the meaning of the Qur’an, such as Ayah (Qur'anic verse) no. 13 in Surah Al-Isra’, which says: وَنُخْرِجُ لَهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ كِتَابًا يَلْقَاهُ مَنْشُورًا [And on the Day of Resurrection, We shall bring out for him a book which he will find wide open]. ?


A: It is authentically reported from the Prophet (peace be upon him) that the Qur’an was divinely revealed in seven approved ways of recitation (Ahruf, sing. Harf), i.e., seven Arab accents and dialects, with the aim of facilitating recitation, as a mercy from Allah (Exalted be He) to mankind. The recitations of the Qur’an have been transmitted by Tawatur (a significant number of narrators whose agreement upon a lie is impossible) and the reality of the Qur’an confirms this. All the Qira’at of the Qur’an were a revelation from Allah, the All-Wise, worthy of all Praise. Therefore, the diversity of Qira’at are not due to distortion, alteration, or ambiguity in the meanings of the Qur’an. They do not imply contradiction or confusion in the intended objectives. Rather, they confirm and explain one another. According to some Qira’at certain meanings may differ, yet this difference aims at achieving a goal in the Shari‘ah (Islamic law) or providing a benefit for people while remaining consistent in meaning, agreeing in objectives, forming a part of one complete, perfectly accurate legislation body, without the slightest blemish of conflict or contradiction among them. (Part No. 4; Page No. 23)  For example, according to the reported Qira’at of the Ayah cited by the questioner: وَكُلَّ إِنْسَانٍ أَلْزَمْنَاهُ طَائِرَهُ فِي عُنُقِهِ وَنُخْرِجُ لَهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ كِتَابًا يَلْقَاهُ مَنْشُورًا , First: if when reading the word (ونخرج) ["Wa nukhriju"] the letter "ن" (Nun) is pronounced with Damm (vowel point that sounds like "u") and the letter "ر" (Ra') is pronounced with Kasr (vowel point that sounds like "i") and when reading (يلقاه) ["Yalqah"] the letter "ي" (Ya') is pronounced with Fath (vowel point that sounds like "a"), with the letter "ق" (Qaf) de-emphasized, the meaning will be: on the Day of Resurrection We shall bring out for every person a record i.e. The record of their good and bad deeds, which they will receive spread open. The blessed people will take their records with their right hands while the wretched will take theirs with their left hands. Second: if when reading يَلْقَاهُ مَنْشُورًا the letter "ي" (Ya') is pronounced with Damm (vowel point that sounds like "u") with the letter "ق" (Qaf) emphasized, as "Yulaqqahu manshura", the meaning will be: on the Day of Resurrection We shall bring out for every person their record of deeds, which they will be given spread open. So, the two Qira’at convey the same meaning in the end, because in either case, received or been given, humans will take the records of their deeds.Similarly, Allah (Exalted be He) says: فِي قُلُوبِهِمْ مَرَضٌ فَزَادَهُمُ اللَّهُ مَرَضًا وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ بِمَا كَانُوا يَكْذِبُونَ [In their hearts is a disease (of doubt and hypocrisy) and Allâh has increased their disease. A painful torment is theirs because they used to tell lies] If when reading (يكذبون) ["Yakdhibun"] the letter "ي" (Ya') is pronounced with Fath ("a"), the letter "ك" (Kaf) has Sukun on it (vowelless), and the letter "ذ" (Dhal) is pronounced with Kasr ("i"), the meaning will be: Tell lies about Allah and the believers. The word (يكذبون) may also be recited "Yukadh-dhibun", where the letter "ي" (Ya') is pronounced with Damm ("u"), the letter "ك" (Kaf) with Fath ("a"), and the letter "ذ" (Dhal) with Shaddah (double consonant). In that case the meaning will be: Belie the Messengers regarding their revealed messages. (Part No. 4; Page No. 24) It is apparent that the meanings of the two Qira’at are congruous with one another, with each of them showing a characteristic of the hypocrites. The first described them as telling lies about Allah (Exalted be He), His Messengers, and people, whereas the second described them as belying the Messengers with regard to the Divine Law and the Truth that was revealed to them. So, both are true, for the hypocrites combine both telling lies about and belying Messengers.Accordingly, it becomes clear that the diversity of the Qira’at of the Qur’an is divinely meant for a Divine Wisdom. The diversity of Qira’at is not a result of human perversion or alteration, and it does not result in error, contradiction, or disorder. Rather, in all cases, the meanings of these recitations are consistent and agreeing in their conclusions.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.


Tags: