Is Rashad’s Translation of the Quran Error-free?

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Edip Yuksel

Rashad and Edip (Tucson, 1988)

For those who claim the infallibility of Dr. Khalifa, I would like to give a sample of verses in his translation that I think carry some minor or important translational problems: 2:114; 2:233; 2:275*; 2:282*; 4:34&*; 4:79*; 7:157; 7:193; 8:64; 10:34!; 11:54; 11:87; 12:37; 14:4; 16:75*; 18:16*; 19:26!; 20:96&*; 20:114; 21:96*; 21:90* x 21:73; 25:30*; 29:12 x 29:13; 32:5!; 34:41; 35:24 x 25:51; 43:11 x 41:12*; 43:36*; 47:11 x 42:15; 49:1 x 38:26&7:3;  56:83-85; 65:12* x 42:29; 73:15!; 75:27; 75:31?; 87:6 (Asterisks are for footnotes and/or subtitles, exclamation marks for missing phrases, and “x” for contradictions.)

Despite clear and numerous evidence to the contrary, some so-called Submitters who left the ranks of Sunni, Shiite, Christian, Hindu polytheism continue their idolization of Rashad by claiming the third revision of his translation to be infallible. In fact, some of them have devolved further and now they claim mathematical miracles for the English translation. Of course the re-re-revised version! I have discussed this issue in length with those who replaced Muhammed’s, Ali’s or Jesus’ idol with of Rashad.

In the last section of this book, you will see some of Rashad’s communication and articles published in various magazines and newspapers, both in Arabic and English. In one of the publications, Rashad answers the question regarding the meaning of “Authorized Translation.” Those who follow the May 19, 1990 “Doomsday Prophets” who could not wait to fabricate a hadith to promote their delusional prophecy, are refuted one more time, with an authentic hadith of their own idol. They will soon come up with the so-called “science of hadith” of Rashad in order to reconcile the internal contradictions among the three revised, yet “authorized” versions; articles in the Submitter’s Perspective; footnotes, subtitles and Appendices in his translation. In order to explain the contradictions of their “infallible messenger,” they will even employ the diabolic Sunni idea of abrogation. They are repeating the history of the past communities who idolized their messengers, in an incredible speed and success.   My previous predictions regarding the backward mutation and devolution of this group have been proven to be true. As it seems, they will continue taking the regressive path of the previous generations.

Rashad never claimed to be infallible, nor did he claim that his translation, with parentheses, footnotes and appendices to be a revelation. He never doubted that the Quran is the last book revealed to the last prophet. However, I agree with him that his translation was authorized by God through discovery of the code and for its clear emphasis on serving God alone and not adding any other sources (including Rashad’s) to God’s word, which is perfect and fully detailed. Rashad was a student of the Quran, trying to purify his mind from the atmospherics of his traditional past that prevented him from receiving the clear broadcast of the divine message. During my years of mail and face-to-face conversation with him, I found him to be usually humble in acknowledging his errors. For instance, he encouraged us to edit and discuss the second revision of his translation verse by verse. During this intense consultation we had numerous discussions.

We continuously learned from each other according to God’s will. During that period, I persuaded him to correct some of the mistakes of the first edition. For example: 2.106; 3:97*; 7.75; 11.87; 11.88; 12.88; 18.83; 21.96; 21.112; 24.35; 27.42; 37.63; 38.44; 39.6; 43.61; 56.79; 72.7; 72.18; 74.31; 96.2. He acknowledged my substantial contribution in the first pages of his translation. Later, when he re-revised his translation, he continued correcting his errors. For example, 4.176; 6.74*; 12.88; 18.83; 30.3; 38.59; 95.5! etc.

Not surprisingly, the gang managed to delete the section where Rashad acknowledged some people, including me for their editorial assistance (My assistance was categorically different, since it was mostly related to the substance rather than grammar or spelling, which was worse during my early years in the USA). The gang wished to purge one of the many evidences indicating that Rashad’s translation was not dictated by an angel, but he was consulting and receiving some help from his friends. Of course, the gang also did not wish to see my substantial contribution to Rashad’s translation to be known by new comers. Upon protests from first generation of Submitters, the gang’s scheme did not last; the acknowledgement section was restored in the following editions of the translation.

Briefly stated, he never claimed to be infallible, as the new idol-carvers among the Submitters claim. The three revised editions of his translations are blatant witnesses to the fact that he was in a continual learning process and that he was open-minded to reasonable criticism. If he were alive, he would surely make many corrections to his third revision. In fact, it is the experience and fate of all translators. Every time I edit my Turkish and English translations of the Quran, I find errors caused by insufficient information, imperfect attention, shortcomings, linguistic problems and unintentional mistakes. Nevertheless, I still believe that both of my translations or Rashad’s are good in delivering the message, inshaAllah.

The message, however, will be missed by those who have prejudice and by those who would consider Rashad’s or my translation to be infallible. If you have bad intentions or you have tendency to set up idols besides God, the Quran will only increase your deviation from truth. Thank God, we have the original Quran that we can refer to anytime we have a question. In 1995, I warned Submitters that it would be an unfortunate repetition of history if one day some of them would claim that Rashad’s translation, Quran the Final Testament, is “equivalent to the original” or “a revelation from God” in itself. But they since then, a growing number of Submitters responded to my warning with bigotry and ignorance. They are passionately adhering to this constant human tendency invoked by the master hypnotist: hero-worship.