READING: Fasting, The Fourt Pillar Of Islam (Edisi 49/ V/ Desember / 2006)
Islam has been from the beginning much more than what is usually meant by general concept “religion” Islam, meaning in Arabic submission to Allah’, is indeed at the same time a religious tradition, a civilization and a total way of life. Islam proclaims a religious faith and sets forth certain rituals, but it also prescribes patterns of order for society in such matters as family life, civil and criminal law, business, etiquette, food, dress, and even personal hygiene. For Islamic followers there are few if any aspects of individual and social life that are not considered to be expression of Islam, which is seen as a complete, complex civilization in which individuals, societies and governments should all reflect the will of Allah, the almighty God.
The prescribed Islamic practices include what so called five pillars of Islam. One of the pillars is fasting, which is our present topic. The rests are: the profession of faith, prayer, almsgiving, and pilgrimage to Mecca. Once each year Islam prescribes a rigorous, month-long fast during the moth of Ramadan, the ninth moth of the Islamic calendar. From sunrise to sunset, all adults Muslims whose health, permits are completely abstain from food, drink, and sexual activity. Ramadan is a time for reflection and spiritual discipline, for expressing gratitude for Allah’s guidance and atoning for past sins, for awareness of human frailty and dependence of Allah.
Concerning fasting quality, Al-Ghazaly, in his Ihya Ulum al Din (Bringing Religious Knowledge to Live), classified fasting into three grades: ordinary, special, and extra special. Ordinary fasting means abstaining from food, drink, and sexual satisfaction. Whereas special fasting means keeping one’s ears, eyes, tongue, hands, and feet – and all other organs – free from sin. Meanwhile, extra – special fasting means fasting of the heart from unworthy concerns and worldly thoughts, in total disregard, of everything but Allah, Great and Glorious is he. This kind of highest quality of fasting is broken by thinkinjg anything other than Allah and the hereafter.
Abstain – Menahan, Menantang
Prescribe – Menentukan
Civilization – Peradaban
Reflection – Cerminan
Disregard – Pengabaian
Religion – Agama
Fast – Puasa
Set Forth – Mengajukan
Hereafter – Akhirat
Submission – Kepasrahan
Guidance – Pedoman
Sunrise – Matahari terbit
Hygiene – Kebersihan
Sunset – Matahari terbenam
Is Broken – Batal
Unworthy – Tidak bernilai
Keep – Menjaga
Way of life – Filsafat hidup
Pillar of Islam – Rukun Islam
Will of Allah
Questions to Answer:
1. Is Islam similar to the general concept of religion?
2. Could you mention all of the five pillars of Islam consecutively?
3. Is the fast of Ramadan annually prescribed?
4. How long should adult Muslims abstain from food and drink during the fasting month?
5. Could you explain the Ghazalian typology of Fasting?
READING: The Great Pilgrimage to Mecca or Hajj: The Fifth Pillar of Islam (Edisi 50/VI/Januari 2007)
The last of five pillars of Islam is the great pilgrimage or hajj to the sacred monuments in and near Mecca, performed during the twelfth month, Dzual-Hijjah, of the Muslim lunar calendar. It is required of adult Muslims at least once in a lifetime if they are physically able to make the trip and can afford it. The great pilgrimage, like prayers, also requires ritual purification, symbolized by wearing of the white garments, the ihram. Men should don two seamless, white sheets. Meanwhile Women may don a long white dress and head covering or veil. Neither jewelry nor perfume is permitted; sexual activity, hunting and the other bad deeds are prohibited as well.
In addition to the hajj, there is devotional ritual, the ‘umrah’, means visitation generally called the lesser pilgrimage, which we, Muslims, may perform when visiting the holy sites at other time of the years. Those who are on the hajj often perform the ‘umrah rituals before, during, or, after the hajj. However, performance of the’umrah’ only does not replace the hajj obligation.
Islamic law or Islamic jurisprudence stipulates three methods of performing the hajj ceremonies: a) ifrad, means one by one, a preferred method, completing the hajj ceremonies first and then the ‘umrah ones; b) tamattu’, means enjoyment, performing the ‘umrah first and then breaking the state of ritual purity or sanctification to enjoy the pleasures of Mecca for a few days before resuming the ihram for the hajj; and c) qiran, means conjunction, beginning the ‘umrah and the hajj, and the completing both at the same time.
The focus of the great pilgrimage is the Ka’bah, the cube-shaped house of Allah, in which the sacred black stone is embedded. The Ka’bah was originally built by the prophet Ibrahim and his son Ismail. The black stone was given to Ibrahim by the angel Gabriel and thus is a symbol of Allah’s covenant with Ismail and, by extension, the Muslim community in general.
Sacred – Suci
Pilgrimage – Ziarah
Pilgrim – Peziarah
Lunar – Bulan
Adult – Baligh/ Dewasa
Lifetime – Seumur hidup
Required – Diwajibkan
Replace – Mengantikan
Obligation – Kewajiban
Purification – Pensucian
Can afford – Mampu (secara finansial)
Black stone – Hajar aswad (batu hitam)
Angel – malaikat
Question to answer
1. When is the great pilgrimage performed by the Islamic followers?
2. How many times should a Muslim perform the pilgrimage?
3. Mention the three alternatives of doing hajj according the text?
4. Who were the early builders of Ka’bah?
5. What Is the meaning of ‘the cube-shaped House of Allah?
READING: The Essence of Hijrah (Edisi 51 /VI/ Februari 2007)
Hijrah, as Ismail Raji al-Faruqi explains in his the Hijrah: The Necessity of its iqamat or Vergenwartigug (1981), literally means “emigration,” or self-separation from one’s fellow or country. Technically, i.e., as an Islamic term, it means the departure of the prophet Muhammad, peace be upon Makkah al-Mukarramah to Yathrib, from that time to be known as Madinat al-Nabiyy or Madinah al Munnawwarah, and his arrival there on September 24, 622 A.C. under the Caliphate of ‘Umar ibn Khattab, the Hijrah – in the technical sense was resolved to be the most crucial event in the history of Islam and its date was declared the beginning of Islamic history.
Hijrah is indeed not restricted to those historical events to which it applies both a linguistic and as technical terms. The term has acquired several figurative meanings having religious and moral content. The holy Qur’an has used conjugations of the term Hijrah in the command to avoid evil, to turn away from the disobedient wife, to lend no ear to and hence, to flout the Qur’an, to leave the unbelieving parent with becoming dignity and decorum rather than offence, to return to Allah in expectation of receiving His guidance, to leave one’s place or condition for sake Allah. All these are new meanings invested to the root term of ‘h-j-r’ and its derivatives by Islam. In Muslim minds, thus, the eticoreligious meanings have overshadowed the linguistic lateral meaning of the verb ‘hajara’, to emigrate.
Hijrah became the greatest religious exercises, namely, forsake the piety pursuits of this world for disciplines of piety, the commitment one’s energies to self-purification and ennoblement, to the study of the science of the faith, to a life of service to Allah, knowledge and mankind. In any one of these meanings, one chould ‘hijrah’ or ‘emigrate’ without ever leaving his own house.
Emigration – Imigrasi
Fellow – Teman, Saudara
Departure – Keberangkatan
For the sake of – Demi untuk Allah
Arrival – Kedatangan
Caliphate – Kekhalifahan
Turn away – Berpaling
Caliph – Khalifah
Peity – Kesalehan
Sense – Pengertian, makna
Peace be upon him (P.B.U.H) – Shallahu ‘Alaihi Wa Sallam’ (SAW)
Restricted – Terbatas
Dinity – Martabat
Overshadow – Dibayangi
Acquired – Memperoleh
Content – Kandungan, Isi
Question to Answer?
1. What is the technical meaning of hijrah?
2. When did the Prophet Muhammad pbuh arrieve at Madinah al Munawarah?
3. Could you give one or figurative meaning of hijrah?
4. Does one have to leave his/her own village to do hijrah?
5. What is the Arabic root of hijrah?
READING: The Witness to Faith: The First Pillar of Islam (Edisi 52/VI/Maret 2007)
The witness to faith or profession pf faith, which is generally called in Arabic Shahada and in Indonesian language Kalimat Syhadat, consists of pronouncing the two phrases “There is no god but Allah” and “Muhammad is the Messenger of God.” Reciting this simple statement in Arabic constitutes the beginning and essence of being Muslim. The theologian al-baghadi(d.1037), however, states that the person who utters the Shahada (confession) must know the meaning and the truth of statement and must repeat it out of understanding and with heartfelt sincerity. The Shahada is repeated as part of the Muslim prayers, and thus gains more of a sense of being an oft-repeated ritual than simply a once in a lifetime statement.
The term in the Shahada translated above as ‘God’ is Allah, The Arabic proper name of God used by Muslims. This name probably comes from al-ilah, ’the god’ the common Arabic noun for deity, with definite article the. The first Shahhada phrase ‘la ilaha illallah’ affirms Islam’s absolute monotheism, an unshakeable and uncompromising faith in the oneness (tawhid) of God. As such, also serves as a reminder to the faithful that polytheism, the association of anything else with divinity, is forbidden and is the one unforgivable sin.
The second Shahada phrase ‘Muhammadar-rasulullah’ is the affirmation that Muhammad as the messenger of Allah, the last and final prophet, who serves as a model for the Muslims community. Molding individuals into an Islamic society requires activities that recall, reinforce, and realize the word of God and the example of the prophet.
I short, belief in the one God and acceptance of His word as revealed to Muhammad p.b.u.h. requires acceptance of the body of duties and obligations recorded in that message. These duties are both spiritual and legal, both societal and devotional, regulating each individual’s relationship with God, with his fellowmen and with His other creatures. The first duty is this profession of faith.
Who says that a person who recites the Shahada should not only know its true meaning but also utter it with heartfelt sincerity?
Witness – Saksi Affirmation – Penegasan
Witness – Mempersaksikan Affirms – Menegaskan
Confession – Pengakuan Unshakeable – Tak tergoyahkan
Consist of – Terdiri atas Reminder – Pengingat
Messanger – Rasul Divinity – Tuhan
Prophet – Nabi Forbidden – Dilarang
Essence – Hakikat Unforgivable – Tak terampuni
New convert – Mualaf Sin – Dosa
Theologian – Teolog Muslim Community – Umat Muslim
Recite – Mengucapkan Word of God – Firman Tuhan
Utters – Mengucapkan Example- Contoh/Tauladan
Pronounce – Mengucapkan Recall – Mengingat
Heartfelt – Sepenuh hati Reinforce – Melaksanakan
Sincerity – ketulusan Realize – Menyadari
As well as – Dan Acceptance – Penerimaan
Deity – Tuhan Hisword – Firman-Nya
Prayer – Salat Revealed – Diwahyukan
God – Tuhan, Dutie – Tugas
God – Dewa Obligation – Kewajiban Good – Baik Devotional – Ibadah
Goods – Barang Creature – Makhluk
Question to Answer:
1. What does the first of the two statements of the faith confession mean?
2. What is the meaning of God in Arabic?
3. Which part of the Shahada indicates the absolute monotheism Islam?
4. Where can the duties and the obligation of Muslims be found?
5. What is the first duty of a Muslim according the above reading text?
6. What is forbidden and even considered as unforgivable sin in Islam?
7. Who does the final prophet refer to?
8. When is the Shahada always repeated by a Muslim?
9. What do p.b.u.h stand for?
PRAYER: The Second Pillar of Islam (Edisi 53/VI/April 2007)
Having proclaimed wholeheartedly that there is no god but allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, a Muslim should offer prayer (salat) five time each day. Thus the second pillar of Islam. Although times for player and ritual actions are not specified in the Qur’an, they were indeed established by the prophet Muhammad, e upon him, Shubuh is offered during day break or at dawn, dhuhur prayer is offered at noon, ashar prayer is offered at mid-afternoon, magrib prayer is offered at sunset, and ’isha prayer is offered in the evening. In line with this, we can simply namethe five prayers respectively as dawn prayer, noon prayer, mid-afternoon prayer, sunset prayer, and evening prayer. In the holy Qur’an, Allah states that “Perform regular prayers. Verily, the prayers are joined on the believers at fixed hours or times,” (QS. An-Nisa : 103). Ritually, each of his regular prayer is preceded ablution that cleanse the body (such as hands, mouth, face, ear, forehead, and feet), and spirit bestow the ritual purity necessary for divine worship.
These five prayers can be performed individually or in a group wherever they may be – in mosque, at home, at work, or even on the road. The beginning of the period for performing each of prescribed daily prayers and the time to go to the mosque on Friday prayers are announced by a public call to prayer called adhan, given by mu’adhin, ‘caller’ from the mosque minaret. The call to prayer consists of seven short statements whose English translation go as follow:
God is the most great.
I testify that there is not god but Allah.
I testify that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.
Come to prayer
Come to salvation
Prayer is better than sleep (this is recited for the after dawn prayer only)
God is most great,
“Prayer is to the believer,”according to Abdul Hasan Nadwi, “what water is to the fish.” Of course, it is unceasing shower which cleans up one bodies, hearts, and spirits from dirt, defects, and all unjust deeds. The prophet Muhammad p.b.u.h. confirms this ideas by his sayings and actions according to following sound hadith:
“See you: If there is river by a house of one of you and washes himself five times a day, can anything of his dirt remain? They said: that does not leave anything of his dirt He said: That is similar to the five prayers by which Allah annuls (minor) sin.” (HN Bukhari Muslim)
The Almighty God himself in the holy Qur’an states that “…establish regular prayer: for prayer restrains from shameful and unjust deeds.” (QS Al Ankabut : 45)
Congregational salat – Salat jamaah
Dawn Prayer – Salat subuh
Prescribed prayer – Shalat wajib
Noon Prayer – Sholat dhuhur
Worship – Menyembah, Beribadah
Afternoon Prayer – Salat Ashar
The Assembly – Salat Jum’at
Sunset Prayer – Salat magrib
Public call to prayer – Adzan
Evening Prayer – Salat Isya
Cycle – Rakaat
Establish _ Mendirikan
Intention – Niat
Cleans Up – Membersihkan
Minor ablution – Wudhu
Soun Hadith – Hadis Sahih
Major ablution – Mandi wajib
Restrain – Mencegah
Essential – Rukun
Annul – Menghapuskan
Preceded – Didahului
Dirt – Kotor
Salutation of peace – Salam (diakhir salat)
Preacher – Khatib, Salam (dalam salat)
Pulpit – Mimbar
Niche – Mihrab
Leader – Imam
Customary (vouluntary) prayer – salat sunah
Bowing – Ruku
Prostration – Sujud
Prescribed daily prayer – Salat lima waktu
Mosque – Masjid
Direction of prayer – Kiblat
Sin – Dosa
Questions to answer:
1. How many times should a Muslim offer prayer?
2. Is ablution necessary for a Muslim before performing Friday prayer?
3. Are all the rituals of prayers described in detail in holy Qur’an?
4. How are the five prescribed prayer performed?
5. Where should any prayer be established?
6. Who announces the beginning of each prayer period?
7. What is the English Translation “hayya ‘alas-shalah!”
8. When is statement of ‘prayer is better than sleep” recited?
9. Who likens the relationship of a Muslim and prayer with that of water and dish?
10. Can you write the original partial Qur’anic verse of “prayer restrains from shameful
and unjust deeds”
READING : SHARI’AH : The Path of Allah (Edisi 54/VI/Mei 2007)
Shari’ah literally means the road to a watering place, hence the path of Allah. It is the body of revealed laws primarily found both in the Holly Qur’an and in the Sunnah. The aim of the Shari’ah is to make people happier in this world and the hereafter. In line with this, a Muslim’s life is ruled in its entirely by the Shari’ah, which spells out the precise rules and regulations governing individual relations with Allah as well as with fellow Muslims and non-Muslims. Thus, it embraces ideally both the religious and non-religious activities of the Muslims. Bearing in mind the unique character of Islam as a religion and complete code of life, Shari’ah is the law according which Allah wants a Muslim to live. Shari’ah has a comprehensive public law that covers both constitution and international affairs. Likewise, it has a private law that covers both criminal and civil matters. It is fundamentally a doctrine of acts and obligation based entirely on revealed sources-namely the Holly Qur’an and the Sunnah. It has a complete way of life towards which the individual and society must strive.
The sources of Shari’ah, as generally believed, fall into two main categories: the primary sources, as already mentoned, the Holly Qur’an, and the Sunnah, about which no schools of Islam disagree upon, the secondary sources are Ijma or consensus and Ijtihad or reasoning. The primacy of the Holly Qur’an and the Sunnah, over all other sources, can be inferred, among other things,in one of the Prophet’s tradition. When Muadh Ibn Jabal was appointed as the governor and judge of Yaman, the Prophet is reported to have asked him as to how he would decide matters coming up before him. “I will judge matters according to the Book of Allah,” said Muadh. “But if the Book of Allah contains nothing to guide you?” ”Then I will act upon the precedents of the Prophet of Allah:.” “But if the precedents of the Prophet of Allah fail?” “Then I will exert to form of our own judgment.”
Since the Shari’ah is believed to be Allah’s law for the entire community, indeed for all humankind. In the final analysis Allah is sovereign ruler of the world and its sole legislator. Since the Shari’ah is concerned with what a Muslim ought to do or ought not to do, all acts are ethically categorized as: obligatory, recommended, in different or permissible, reprehensive, but not forbidden, and forbidden. To break the Shari’ah is transgression against both society and Allah; a crime and a sin; the guilty are subject to punishment in this world and the hereafter.
|Important Vocabularies :|
Bring in mind – Mempertimbangkan
Disagree – Tidak setuju hukum yang diwahyukan
School – Madzhab
Spell out – Menerangkan
Judge – Hakim
Character – Sifat
Exert – Menggunakan
Rule – Aturan, mengatur
Sovereign – Berdaulat
Entirely – Secara keseluruhan
Obligatory – Wajib
Govern – Mengatur
Recommended – sunah
Code of life – Aturan hidup
Permissible – Mubah
Way of life – Filsafat hidup, cara hidup
Reprehensive nut not forbidden – Makruh
Cover – Mencakup
Forbidden – Dilarang, haram
Literally – Secara harfiah
Hereafter – Akhirat
Path of God – Jalan atau agama Allah
Embraces – Meliputi
Strive – Berusaha keras
Transgression – Pelanggar, orang yang berdosa
Break the rule – Melanggar hukam, aturan
Guilty – Bersalah
Fellow – Muslim, saudara sesama muslim
Punishment – Hukuman
Question to Answer:
1. What is the literal meaning of Shari’ah?
2. What is the principal meaning of Shari’ah?
3. Mention one out of the two aims of the Shari’ah?
4. How should a Muslim live a life?
5. Could mention all the sources of the Shari’ah in Islam?
6. Which are the sources of the Shari’ah held by all school of Islamic law?
7. Who appointed Muadh Ibn Jabal as the governor?
8. Mention al-ahkam al-khamsah is the Shari’ah?
9. Who is the sovereign over this world?
10. Could write in Arabic the Prophet tradition mentioned in the text?
Mufassir Bahasa Inggris dan Potensi Dakwah Global (Edisi 55/VI/Juni 2007)
Oleh Ilzamudin Ma’mur
iantara cabang tafsir yang dimusabaqahkan di tingkat Privinsi Banten yang diselengarakan pada tanggal 30 April s/d 15 Mei 2007 di Serang, tafsir bahasa Arab, dan tafsir bahasa Inggris, tafsir yang diebut terakhir merupakn sub cabang tafsir yang paling belakangan diperkenalkan, yakni dalam MTQ Provinsi Banten ke III yang diselengrakan di kota Cilegon pada 12-16 Mei tahun 2004. Pada tingkat nasional tafsir al Qur’an dalam bahasa Inggris bahkan baru diperkenalkan pada tahun 2006, yakni dalam MTQ ke XXI di Kendari ibu kota Provinsi Sulawesi tenggara. Ini berarti bahwa tafsir al-Qur’an dalam bahasa Inggris memerlukan waktu selama selama kurang lebih 38 tahun untuk menduduki posisinya yang sekarang ini sejak MTQ Nasional pertama kalinya di Indonesia tepatnya di Makasar pada tahun 2968. Apapun alasanya, ini merupakan keputusan strategis, keputusan yang berhak dihargai dan disambut baik oleh semua pihak. Kenyataanya bahasa Inggris sekarang ini, suka tidak suka, termasuk bahasa Internasional atau bahasa global yang menurut futurolog kenamaan John Niasbiit dan Patricia Aburdence, dalam Megatrend 2000, menjadi bahasa papan atas dalam millenium ketiga, millenium yang baru kita masuki sejak beberapa tahun yang lalu.
Arti Penting Tafsir al-Qur’an Bahasa Inggris
Banyak pertimbangan yang menjadi pendorong mengapa tafsir al-Qur’an bahasa Inggris pada akhirnya dimasukan sebagai salah satu cabang yang dimusabaqahkan dalam MTQ. Diantara pertimbangan tersebut, barangkali adalah : Pertama, umat Muslim yang jumlahnya lebih dari satu miliar orang , tersebar diseluruh pelosok lima benua mulai Asia, Afrika, Amerika, Australia, hingga Eropa. Mereka memiliki budaya dan bahasa yang beragam dan bahasa yang umumnya mereka kuasai barangkali adalah bahasa Inggris. Yang pasti, dapat diestimasikan bahwa, walaupun tidaka dapat menujuk data statistik pastinya, jumlah umat Islam penutur nahasa non-Arab melampaui jumlah umat Islam penutur bahasa Arab yang pada uymumnya bermukim di nnegara-negara Arab di Timur Tengah, sehingga memerlukan bahasa yang menjembatani pemahaman terhadap isi kanandungan al-Qur’an yang berbahas Arab. Bahasa jembatan tersebut diantaranya dalam hal ini, adalah bahas Inggris.
Kedua, jumlah penutur bahasa inggris di dunia ini melampaui jumlahn pengguna bahasa-bahasa internasional lainya. Sedangkan pesan Allah yang tekandung dalam al-Qur’an harus disampaikan kepada seluruh umat manusia, baik Muslim maupun non-Muslim, terlepas apakah mereka pada akhirnya menerima atau menolak pesan tersebut. Kewajiban umat Islam adalah memperkenalkannya dengan wajahnya yang tepat dan benar.
Ketiga, di tingkat internasional ummat Islam itu sendiri mereka menggunakan bahasa Inggris dalam pertemuan-pertemuan serta konferensi-konferensi yang diselenggarakannya, sebagaimana disinyalir oleh Akbar S Ahmad, antropolog penggiat Islamisasipengetahuan yang berbasis di Inggris. Ia menyatakan bahwa ”Dalam kegiatan konferensi Islaminternasional apakah diselengarakan di Kuala Lumpur ataupun New York, bahasa utama yang digunakan adalah bahasa Inggris, Menyadari arti penting bahasa Inggris ini pula dan dalam mengurangi missunderstanding dunia terhadap konsep-konsep dasa Islam. Almarhum Ismail Raji al-Faruqi, seorang guru besar di Madison University, Amerika serikat, dan penulis Cultural Atlas of Islam bernama Lois Lamya Al-Faruqi, juga menulis buku berjudul Toward Islamic English (Menuju ke Arah Bahasa Inggris Islami).
Keempat, dalam konteks Indonesia, bahasa Inggris sejak sajak tahun 1958-an sudah diwajibkan memasukannya dalam kurikulum sebagai salah satu mata pelajaran yang harus diajarakan mulai dari sekolah tingkat menegah pertama, bahkan sekarang di tingkat sekolah dasar juga dianjurkan, hingga pendidikan tinggi. Di pesanteren-pesanteren, terutama pesanteren Khalaf atau pesantren modern, bahasa Inggris sudah sejak lama diwajibkan tidak saja mempelajarinya tetapi juga menggunakannya sabagai alat komunikasin sehari-hari berdampingan dengan bahasa arab.
Kelima, terjemahan al-Qur’an dan tafsir al-Qur’an dalam bahasa Inggris baik yang konvensional maupun yanng digital sudah banyak tersedia dan dengan mudah dapat diakses di Indonesia. Misalnya, terjemhan al-Qur’an dalam bahasa Inggris, diantaranya, adalah The meaning of the Glorious Koran karya Muhammad Marmaduke Pitchall; The Holly Qur’an karya S.V Mir Ahmed Ali (1988). The Qur’an : Arabic Text with Corresponding English Meanings karya Team Saheeh Internasional (1997); The Holy Qur’an : Text Translation and Commentary karya Abdullah Yusuf Ali (1989) Translation of the Glorious Qur’an karya Ahmad Zidan dan Dinha Zidan (1991); The Qur’an : The First American Version karya Thomas Ballantine Irving (1986); Al-Qur’an a Contemporary Translation karya ahmad Ali 91963);, Qur’an Translation: Discourse, Texture, and exegesis karya Abdur-Raof (2001);. The Holy Qur’an: English Translation of Commentary karya Ghulam Farid Malik (1969); The Holy Qur’an: Arabic Text, Translation and Commentary karya Maulana Muhammad Ali (1951); The Noble Qur’an: English Translation on Meanings and Commentary karya Muhammad Muhsin Khan and Muhammad Taqi-ud-Din Al-Hilali (1999); dan The Message of the Qur’an Translated and Explained, karya Muhammad As’ad (1984). Sedangkan diantara kitab-kitab tafsir dalam bahasa Inngris adalah : Abdul A’la Al Mawdudi, The Meaning of the qur’an, jilid (1984); syed Anwer Ali, Qur’an the Fundamental Law of Human Life, (16Jilid); Muhammad Muhsin Khan and Muhammad Taqi-ud-Din Al-Hilali, Interpretation of the Meanings of The Noble Qur’an in the english Language, 9 jilid (1999); dan abu al-Fida ’Imad Ad-Din Ismail bin’Umar bin Kathir Al-Quraeshi, Tafsir Ibn Kathir, 10 jilid (2003);
Terakhir, umat Islam Indonesia yang jumlahnya merupakan yang terbesar di dunia Muslim, dengan menguasai al-Qur’an, bahasa Arab dan bahasa Inggris sekaligus diharapkan dapat berperan lebih aktif lagi dalam pecaturan peradaban global, terutama dalam bingkai dakwah global kepada warga global dengan menggunkan bahasa global, bahasa Inggris.
Mufassir Sebagai Dai dan Mubaligh Global
Kendatipun masih terbilang baru, cabang tafsir al-Qur’an dalam bahasa Inggris nampaknya semakin diminati dan mendapatkan tempat di hati para generasi muda Muslim Banten. Hal ini diindikasikan oleh terus meningkatnya jumlah peserta yang mendaftarkan diri dan mengikuti musabaqah cabang tafsir al-qur’an dalam bahasa inggris dari waktu ke waktu dalam setiap penyelengaraanya baik dalam tingkat kabupaten maupun tingkat privinsi. Misalnya, saat tafsir pertama kali diperkenalkan di MTQ ke III Provinsi Banten yang diselengarakan di kota Cilegon pada tahun 2004, peserta mufassir dan mufassirah yang tercatat hanya 12 orang, sedangkan pada MTQ ke VI Privinsi Banten yang sekarang diselenggarakan di kota Serang, peserta yang tercata tidak kurang dari 24 orang. Dengan demikian ada peningkatan sebanyak 100%. Tren peningkatan yang sama juga terjadi pada MTQ tingkat kabupaten, MTQ kabupaten serang misalnya, pada penyelenggaraan MTQ yang diselengarakan di kecamatan Cinangka pada tahun 2004, peserta kurang lebih 12 orang, sedangkan pada penyelenggaraan tahun 2007 di kecamatan serang, peserta mufassir dan mufassirah yang tercatat sebanyak 33 orang, peningkatan sebanyak lebih dari 150%. Kalau trend peningktan di kecmatan serang tersebut dapat dijadikan representasi karena Serang juga dipandang sebagai ’gudang’nya Qori dan Qari’ah, maka trend yang sama kemungkinan besar juga terjadi dalam penyelenggaraan MTQ di semua kota dan kabupaten diwilayah provinsi Banten. Suatu trend yang mengembirakan dan perlu mendpatkan perhatian, sambutan, dan dukungan serius dari semua pihak. Ini merupakan potensi luar biasa tidak saja bagi kepentinmgan pribadi para peserta yang bersangkutan, tetapi pemerintah daerah, LPTQ, Depag, dan juga bangsa Indonesia seacar keseluruhan yang sebagian besarnya juga beragama Islam.
Dengan al-Qur’an diluar kepalanya, tafsir terkuasai dalam fikiranya, kepiawaian retotika dalam bibirnya, antusiasme berdakwah yang mengelora dalam dadanya, para mufassir dan mufassirah bidang tafsir al-Qur’an dalam bahasa Inggris memiliki potensi besar sebagai dai-dai’yah dan mubaligh-mubalighah yang sangat kompeten dan mumpuni di masa depan. Mereka memiliki keistimewaan berupa kemungkinan jangkauan khlayaknya pada masyarakat global daram era globalisasi. Mereka dapat melakukan dakwah global, baik dengan lisan mupun tulisan, yang menjangkau umat Muslim dan Non-Muslim yang menggunakan bahasa Inggris sebagai native speaker, sebgai bahasa pertama, bahasa kedua, dan bahkan bahasa asing sekalipun. Mereka memiliki potensi dan peluang besar untuk dapat mengajak kepada kebaikan dan sekailgus menjelaskan dengan benar apa itu Islam dan apa maknanya menjadi Muslim. Islam seperti tersirat dalam namanya adalah agama pencinta dan penganjur kedamaian, bukan pendukung apalagi pelaku terorisme seperti yang coba dikesankan dan dicitrakan oleh ”dunia luar” melalui berbgai masmedia internasional akhir-akhir ini. Wallahu a’lam!
READING: Belief In Allah’s Books: The Third Article of Faith (Edisi 56/VI/Juli 2007)
The true Muslim believes should also believe in all the books and revelations of the almighty Allah.
They were guiding light which the messengers of Allah received to show their respective people the right path of Allah, Islam. In the Holy Qur’an a special reference is made to the books of Ibrahim, Dawud, Musa, and Isa. Their respective scriptural names are Sukhuf, Zabur, Taurat [Torah], Injil [Gospel]. However, long before the revelation of the Qur’an to Muhammad, p.b.u.h., according to Hammudah Abdallati, some of those books and revelations had been either lost or corrupted, others forgotten, neglected or concealed. In line with this, Muslims believe that the only authentic and complete book of Allah in existence today is the Qur’an. The authenticity of the Qur’an and its comparison to the Old and New Testament are explained in great detail by Dr. M>M Al Azami, an emeritus professor of Islamic Studies at king Sa’ud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in his book The History of The Qur’anic Text from revelaton to compilation (2005). Now the Indonesian edition of the book is also available.
The holy Qur’an, which is divided into thirty parts (juz), consist of 144 chgapters (surah) of varying length, from a few lines to several pages. According to Ibn Kathir, one of the most well knownj interpretes (mufasir) in Indonesia, there are 6.000 verses in the holy Qur’an, 77.439 wors, and not less than 321.180 letters. It was revealed in the Arabic language by Almighty Allah to the Prophet Muhammad, p.b.u.h, with angel Gabriel as intermediary.
The Prophet Muhammad was then only forty years old when Allah advised him of his mission. The angel Gabriel visited him on Sunday night, then on Sunday night, and on Monday he revealed to him that he had been chosen by Allah to be prophet to receive a risalah, the revealed message. This was in 610 C.E. at the cave of Hira, a place of retreat near Mecca where Muhammad used to go to meditate. The five first verses revealed to him were an order to be informed and to learn. The meaning of the verses, based on Hilali’s and Khan’s Interpretation of the meanings of the Noble Qur’an (1996), are as follows:
1. Read! In the Name of your Lord who has created (all that exists)
2. He has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood).
3. Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous.
4. Who has taught (the writing) by the pen.
5. He has taught man that which he knew not. (Chapter 96, verses 1-5)
Allah revelation to Muhammad succeeded one another from time to time over a period of more than twenty years, from 610 to 632 C.E., the date of the Prophet’s death.
Guiding light – Obor pemandu
People – Kaum
Scripture – Kitab suci
Forgotten – Terlupakan
Lost – Hilang
Compilation – Kompilasi
Not less than – Tidak kurang dari
Intermediary – Perantara
In existence – Maujud, ada
Cave – Gua
Mediate – Meditasi
Had been chosen – Telah terpilih
Show – menunjukan
Referenced – acuan
Neglected – Terabaikan
Concealed – Tersembunyi
Corrupt – Rusak
Authentic – Otentik, Asli
Gabriel – Malaikat Jibril
Well known – Termasyhur
Varying – Beragam
Used to – Biasanya
Order – Perintah
Advised – Menganjurkan, Memerintahkan
Emiretus Professor – Guru Besar puma
Right path of Allah – Jalan yang benar menuju jalan Allah
Question to answers:
1. Why should Muslim believe to all Allah’s book?
2. Could you mention to other sacred scriptures mentioned in the holy Qur’an?
3. What is the name of the scripture of Prophet David?
4. Who believes that the Qur’an today is the only authentic Allah’s book?
5. Is the authentic holy scriptures of Zabur available today?
6. How old was the Prophet when he received Allah’s first revelation?
7. Where were the first five verses of the Qur’an revealed?
8. Who is M.M. Azami?
9. How long had the holy Qur’an revealed to the Prophet Muhammad?
10. When did the klast Messenger of allah pass away?
READING: Zakat the Third Pillar of Islam (Edisi 57/VI/Agustus 2007)
Although ‘zakat’ is one of Islamic concepts which has no equivalent in English, some books on Islam in English render it with different words or phrases such as “alms giving”, “alms-tax”, ”charity”, and “annual tax”. The literal and simple meaning of Zakat is purity. The technical meaning of the word indeed designates a kind of mandatory donation to charity. More over, it is more of the nature of a public welfare tax, with specific amount. Its payment is religiously and publicly obligatory for all Muslims without exception, and it is levied on all inheritances before distribution. The Holy Qur’an defines the righteous as those who “attend to their players, pay alms-tax and firmly believe in the life to come”(31:4).
Zakat, as the third pillar of Islam, is due upon the value of all goods, chattels, profits, trade, and mercantile business. The public welfare tax is not due unless the property amounts to a certain value and has been in the possession of a person for a whole year. In modern time zakat can also be applied to shares, securities, insurance policies, and provident funds as well. The most common measure of this kind of wealth is 2.5 percent. In addition, at the end of the month of Ramadan, each head of a rich Muslim household is also required to give away in alms for every member of his household a measure of rice, wheat, raisins, barley or other grain, or the value of the same. For this kind of Zakat, the measure is 2.5 kilograms or the value of the same per person. Thus, Zakat can be classified into two kinds: zakat fitrah and zakat mal (wealth).
According to Hammudah Abdallati, as stated in Islam in focus (1975:97), there are at least five far-reaching effects of Zakat. It purifies the property of the people with means and clears it from the shares which do not belong to it anymore, the shares which must distributed among the due beneficiaries. Second, it does not only purify the property of the contributor but all purifies his heart from selfishness and greed for wealth. Third, it mitigates to a minimum the sufferings of the needy and poor members of society. Fourth, it is healthy form of internal security against selfish greed and social dissension, against the intrusion and penetration of subversive ideologies. Fifth, it is a vivid manifestation of the spiritual and humanitarian spirit of responsive interactions between the individual and society.
Finally, the due recipients of zakat are as follows: the poor Muslims, the needy Muslims, the new Muslim converts, the Muslim prisoner of war, the Muslim in debt, the Muslim in charge of the zakat collection, the Muslims in service of the cause of God by means of research or study or propagation of Islam, and the Muslim wayfarers who are stranded in a foreign land and in need for help.
Equivalent – Padanan
Vivid – Jelas, Gamblang
Purity – Kesucian
Mitigate – Mengurangi
Purify – Mensucikan, Membersihkan
Greed – Ketamakan
Trade – Perdagangan
Selfish – Mementingkan diri sendiri
Render – Mengalihkan
Mercantile – Perdagangan
Define – Mendefinisikan
Measure – Ukuran
Life to come – Akhirat
Wheat – Gandum
Raisin – Kismis
In need for help – Perlu bantuan
Value – Nilai
Barley – Sejenis gandum
Goods – Barang
Grain – Padi
Amounts – Berjumlah
Far-reaching – Berjangkauan luas
In the possession – Dimiliki
Means – Cara
Shares – Saham
Research – Riset, Penelitian
Securities – Sekuriti
Poor – Miskin
Insurance Policies – Polis asuransi
Needy – Fakir
Fund – Dana
Propagation – Penyiaran, Dakwah
Give away – Menyerahkan
In debt – Berhutang
Household – Rumah tangga
Due recipients – Mustahik
Converts – Mualaf
Questions to Answer:
1. What is the literal meaning of Zakat?
2. What is the technical meaning of Zakat?
3. Is the concept of Zakat the same as the concept of charity?
4. How many kinds of Zakat are there discussed in the text?
5. Who should pay for the Zakat?
6. Whom should zakat be distributed to?
7. Could you mention some advantages that Zakat possibly contributor gets?
8. Could you mention what kind of property that a Muslim should its Zakat?
9. How much should you as aMuslim pay for the zakat at the end of Ramadan?
10. Who is the writer of Islam in focus?
READING: BELIEF IN ALLAH: The First article of Faith in Islam (Edisi 58/VI/September 2007)
Traditionally it is strongly held that there are six fundamental articles of faith in Islam, these articles of believe include: belief in Allah, belief in Angels, belief in His Messengers, belief in His books, belief in the last Day of Judgment, and belief in Qada and Qadar. The six articles of belief care based on Allah’s own words, as stated in Interpretation of Meanings of the Noble Qur’an in the English Language that go bas follows: “O you believe! Believe in Allah, and His Messenger, and the scripture which He has sent down to His Messenger, and the Scripture which He has sent down to those before; and whosoever disbelieves in Allah, His Angels, His Books, His messenger, and the last Day, then indeed he has stayed for away. (QS 4:136). In addition, one of the prophetic traditions to support this belief is the one narrated by Abu Hurairah r.a. in sahih Al-Bukhari. One day, while Allah’s Messenger p.b.u.h. wassitting with the people, a man came to him walking and said, “O allah’s Messenger! What is Faith? The Prophet p.b.u.h. said. “Faith is to believe in allah, His Angels, His Books, His Messengers, and the meeting with Him, and to believe in the resurrection.”
In line with the chosen title of reading, the present reading passage is primarily focused on the first article of Faith, i.e. the belief in Allah. As Muslim one has to believe in One and the Only God as the following Surah Al-Ikhlas clearly implies:
Say (O Muhammad p.b.u.h.): “He is Allah, the One. Allah is the self-Sufficient Master, whom all creatures need.
He begets not, nor was he begotten
And there is none co-equal or comparable unto Him.
The Principle of Oneness of God is reffered to as the principle of tawhid, and henceforth this surah is also sometimes called Surah al-Tawhid. Tawhid indeed signifies a relationship with the Only One that excludes a similar relationship with anyone else. Tawhid is man’s commitment to Allah, the focus of all his reverence and gratitude, the only source of value. What Allah desires of man becomes value of him, the end of human endeavor. Man, ho commit himself to the will of Allah, recognizes no authority except His and accepts no guidance other than His. In order to be more effective, as suggested by Hammudah Abdallati in his Islam in focus, this belief requires complete trust and hope in God, submission to His Will and reliance on His aid. It secures man’s dignity and saves him from fear and despair, from guilt and confusion.
Articles of faith – Rukun iman
Scripture – Kitab suci
Disbeliever – Oramg kafir
Noble – Mulia
Commitment – Komitmen
Source of Value – Sumber nilai
Authority – Otoritas
Reverence – Rasa takdzim
Gratitude – Rasa syukur
Submission – Memasrahkan
Guidance – Petunjuk, Pedoman
As Suggested – Sebagaimana dianjurkan
Will of Allah – Perintah Allah
Recognize – Mengenal
Trust – Kepercayaan
Will – Perintah
Dignity – Martabat
Despair – Keputusasaan
Guilt – Rasa salah
Confusion – Kebingungan
Reliance on – Mengantungkan, Mengandalkan
The end – Tujuan
Endeavor – Usaha (upaya)
Questions to Answer:
1. How many articles of faith are in Islam?
2. What are the fundamental sources of the formulation of the articles of faith?
3. Mention the first three articles of faith?
4. Could you translate the above surah al-Tawhid into Indonesia well? Do it!
5. According to the text, is there any authority other than Allah’s?
6. Translate the above Hadits narrated by Abu Hurairah ra into Indonesian!
7. Do you know the man who met the messenger of God asking what the faith is?
8. What is the forth chapter (surah) of the holy Qur’an named?
9. What is the title of the Qur’an translation quoted in this reading text?
10. What is the meaning of the title of this text?
READING: BELIEVE IN THE ANGELS OF ALLAH: The Second Article of Faith (Edisi 59/VI/Oktober 2007)
We, Muslims, should believe in angles of Allah. They are purely spiritual and splendid beings whose nature requires neither food nor drink nor sleep. They neither have physical desires of any kind nor material needs. They spend their days and night in the service of Allah. There are many of them, and each one is charged with a certain duty. If we cannot see the angels with our naked eyes, it does not necessarily deny their actual existence, in fact, there are many things in the world that are invisible to the eye or inaccessible to the senses, and yet we do believe in their existence. There are places we have never directly either seen or visited like the North Pole or the moon surface, but we do still believe them. There are other things like gas and either that we could not see with our naked eyes, smell or touch or taste or hear; yet we do acknowledge their existence. Therefore, there is no ground at all for not believing in the angels of Allah.
Belief in the angels of Allah originates from the Islamic principle that knowledge or sensory truths are not entirely confined to sensory knowledge or sensory perception alone. In the Qur’an chapter An-Nahl, verses 49-50 Allah states that:
049. And unto Allah make the prostration whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth of living creatures and the angels (also) and they are not proud. 050. They fear their Lord above them, and do what they are bidden. (Picthall, nd: 198).
The numbers of Allah’s Angels is perhaps unlimited and even it is only Allay who knows their exact number. However, there are ten of them whose names and duties are generally mentioned in the book on Islamic tauhid or Islamic theology. Their names and respective duties are as follows: Jibril or Gabriel is the angel whose position is the highest among Allah’s angels. His duty is to deliver or inform revelation from Allah to Muhammad and other messenger of Allah; Mikail or Michael is the angel whose duty is to distribute things (rizq) needed by all Allah’s creatures in this world; Israfil is the angel whose duty is to blow the first Trumpet. When he blows the trumpet for the first time this world and all creatures between the earth and sky will be destroyed altogether. On the contrary, when he blows the last trumpet for the second time then all dead creatures will be alive, Izrail who is also known as the death angel has a special duty, i.e., to pull out the soul of every living creatures. He does it based on Allah’s order to do so. Qur’an states that “And He is the subjugator over his servants and his send over you guardians-angels until, when the death comes to one of you. Our angels of death take him, and they do not fail in their duties.” (Al-An’am, 61); Munkar and Nakir are two angels whose duties are to examine and question human-beings in what so called”alam barzakh”, Raqib is the angel of Allah whose main duty is to record all of the good deed of His creatures; ‘Atid is the angels of Allah whose main duty is to record every single bad deeds of His creatures; Malik is the angel whose duty is to safe-guard the gate of hell-fire. He is strong in character and cruel to the dweller ‘candidate’ of the hell-fire; Ridwan is the angel whose duty is to safe-guard the gate of heaven.
Sense – Indera
Invisible – Tidak dapat dilihat
Splendid being – Makhluk yang baik sekali
Spiritual-being – Makhluk halus
Inaccessible – Tidak dapat diakses
North Pole – Kutub utara
Sensory truth – Kebenaran inderawi
Be charger with – Dibebankan
Surface – Permukaan
Smell – Membaui, Mencium
Touch – Menyentuh
Taste – Merasakan (dengan lidah)
Acknowledge – Mengakui
Spend – Menghabiskan
Naked eyes – Mata telanjang
Originate – Berasal
Deny – Mengingkari
There is no ground – Tidak ada alasan
Creature – Makhluk
Death – Kematian
Desire – Hasrat
Trumpet – Sangkakala
Fail – Gagal
Angel – Maikat
Duty – Tugas
Gate – Pintu gerbang
Cruel – Kejam
Deeds – Amal perbuatan
Self-guard – Menjaga
Dweller – Penghuni
Questions to Answer:
1. Should a Muslim believe in the invisible angels of Allah?
2. Do All Allah’s angels feel hungry and thirsty?
3. Do you know how many angels in the service to Allah?
4. Could you know what will happen in this world when Israfil blows the Trumpet the
5. Could name the angels who deliver revelation to Prophet Muhammad?
6. Have you been the North Pole? Do you believe its existence?
7. Name the angels whose duty to question the dead man in ‘alam barzakh’?
8. Who is called the angel of death?
9. What is the main duty of angel Gabriel?
10. How many angels are there mentioned in the above passage?
11. Could you written down the verse 61 of Al-An’am chapter?
READING: BELIEF IN THE LAST DAY OF JUDGMENT: The Fifth Article of Faith (Edisi 60/VI/November 2007)
Every Muslims should believe in the last Day of Judgment. This world will come to an end some day, and the dead will rise to stand for their final and fair trial. Qur’an refers to this day with different terms among of which are yaum al-akhir (al-Baqarah: 8), yaum al-Qiyamah (al-baqarah: 85), yaum al-Hasrah (Maryam: 39), and yaum al-Hisab (Shad: 16, 26 and 35).
In the last Day of Judgment, it is believed that everything we do in this world, every intention we have, every move we make, every action we perform, every thoughts we entertain, and every word we say and write, all are counted and kept in accurate records. One the day of Judgment they will brought up before us. People with good record will be generously rewarded and warmly welcomed to the heaven of Allah, and those with bad records will be punished and cast into hellfire. The real nature of heaven and hellfire and the exact description of them are known to the Almighty Allah only. There descriptions of heaven and hellfire in the Qur’an and tradition of Prophet Muhammad. p.b.u.h. , there are things which no eye has ever seen, no ear has ever heard, and no mind has ever conceived. However, the Muslim believes that there definitely will be compensation and reward for the good deeds, and punishment for the evil ones. That is the day of justice and final settlement of all accounts.
Belief in the Day of Judgment is the final relieving answer to many complicated problems of our world. There are people who commit sins, neglect Allah, and indulge in immoral activities yet they seem to be ‘superficially’ successful in business and prosperous in life. There are also virtuous and God-Minded people, yet they seem to be getting less reward for their present world: there is puzzling and incompatible with the justice of Allah. If the guilty people can escape the mundane law unharmed and, in addition, be more prosperous, what is, then, left for the virtuous people? What will promote the cause of morality and goodness? There must be some ways to reward goodness and arrest evil. If this not done here on this earth – and we know that it is not done regularly or immediately – if has to be done some day, and that is the so called Day of Judgment.
Last day of judgment – Hari akhir
The day of justice – Hari keadilan
Come to end – Berakhir
Rise – Bangkit
The dead – Orang yang telah meninggal
Fair trial – Pengadilan yang jujur
Intention – Niat
Be counted – Dihitung
Be kept – Disimpan
Before – Sebelum
Accurate record – Catatan yang akurat
Generously – Dengan murah hati
Rewarded – Diberi pahala/ Diganjar
Good record – Catatan baik
Bad record – Catatan buruk, Amal buruk
Heaven – Surga
Warmly welcomed – Disambut dengan ramah
Hellfire – Neraka
Nature – hakikat
Definitely – Secara pasti
Punishment – Hukuman
Good dead – Amal baik
Final relieving answer – Jawaban pemungkas
Evil dead – Amal buruk
Complicated – Rumit
Commit – Melakukan
Sin – Dosa
Neglect – Mengabaikan
Indulge – Menurutkan hati
Yet – Namun
Prosperous – Makmur
Virtuous – Bajik
God-minded – Selalu ingat akan Allah
Sincere effort – Usaha yang tulus
Suffer – Menderita
Present – Sekarang
Puzzling – membingungkan
Incompatible – Tidak sejalan
Guilty – Bersalah
Escape – Melarikan diri
Mundane law – Hukum duniawi
What is left – Apa yang tesisa
Promote – Mengajukan
Goodness – Kebaikan
Arrest – Menundukan
Evil – Kejahatan
Questions to answer:
1. When will this world come to an end?
2. What will every man do on the day of justice?
3. Will every man who commits sin in t5his world be directly punished by Allah?
4. Could you mention three other terms used in the Qur’an for the final Day of Judgment?
5. Who will be warmly welcomed in the heaven?
6. Who will be punished in the hellfire?
7. “On the day of judgment they will be brought up before us,” What does the word they
in this sentence refer to?
8. Can a guilty man escape from the law of Allah?
9. Why is the Day of judgment called the final settlement of all accounts?
10. How will any goodness be awarded and all evils arrested?