NOTE: Comments at bottom of this article show some people are confused about this. They attack the author on his honesty and integrity. Your comments could help. Please write clearly and make good points to these people. Ask Allah to guide them, inshallah.
"Didn't Muhammad make up and write the Quran himself?"
No. Muhammad, peace be upon him, did not write the Quran. He was not able to do so, because he was illiterate. He could neither read nor write and there are many who attested to this fact.
"So, if Muhammad did not write the Quran, then WHO DID?"
No person "made up" the Quran. The Quran came down to Muhammad, peace be upon him, from Almighty God (Allah) by way of the angel Gabriel (Jibril in Arabic) and then it was memorized by him and he then in turn, would teach it orally to his companions.
The word "Quran" actually means the "Recitation" (spoken words). How do you "write sounds" recited sounds? - You actually only write what you hear and represent it with pen and ink on paper. Actually people can only write down words they hear of the "Quran" (Recital) as Muhammad, peace be upon him, recited it to them. The actual tone, pitch and sound are not really captured on paper.
When we have the Quran in written, book form it is usually referred to as 'scripture' ('mus-haf' in Arabic), although it is still Quran to us. So, while it is of course, possible to write down in book form, what we hear in some form or another, the main point is that Muhammad, peace be upon him, did not make up, fabricated or invent the words in the Quran. And there would be no way he could, as he was illerate and unable to read or write.
So, the question would be correct to ask in this way...
Now this question is easy.
According to the Quran's teachings, it came directly to Muhammad, peace be upon him, from the angel Gabriel (Ar. Jibril), who received it from Almighty God (Allah) and then he recited it to Muhammad, peace be upon him, piece by piece, sentence by sentence, revealing small and large portions of it over a period of 23 years.
The actual assembly and order of verses was never changed by Muhammad, peace be upon him. It was Jibril, the Angel of Allah, who instructed as to what should go where every time more of the Quran was revealed.
"If Muhammad didn't know to read/write, then his friends needed to write Quran (like the Bible) -- right?
NO! Again, they didn't need to write it down to preserve it, althought they did. They all completely memorized it from what they heard.
Some of them wrote it down on animal skins, others on large stones or palm leaves, because the prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, instructed them to do so. So, they did write down what they had heard and that is Quran in written form. They all memorized the Quran for themselves and passed it down the same way they got it. The mouth to ear method of memorizing is still used the same way today for modern Muslims.
-- Could they have misinterpreted or did they possibly modify or add or delet any verses of Quran?"
NO! Allah tells us in the Quran itself, "If you are in doubt about it, bring a book like it" - So, we see that it is a book, yes. But it is not the same as an ordinary book written or made up by humans and that is our main point here.
You are most welcome to review the facts and consider for yourself.
Now here is your chance to verify these claims, as the Quran makes these claims within itself about its own authenticity:
* "This is the Book (Qur'an) wherein there is no doubt"
*"Have not the unbelievers considered that if it were from other than Allah, it would contain many contradictions?"
* "Allah shall show them the Signs within themselves and on the farthest horizons."
* "If you are in doubt about it, bring a book like it."
To date, none have been able to produce anything even close to the Quran in beauty, style, meaning and prophecies. The scientific proofs and evidences make the Quran the most talked about book in the intellectual world today.
Peace to all who seek truth and guidance, ameen.
What is the Quran?
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