Re: Assistance please?
|From:||Roger Mills <romilly@...>|
|Date:||Sunday, November 4, 2001, 16:25|
Frank George Valoczy wrote:
>The seventh verse of the 8th Sura has me doing mental acrobatics,and>falling off the trapeze repeatedly. In English it is (roughly):
>And when Allah promised one of the two bands of the enemy to you, that it
>should become yours, and you were hoping that it will be other than the
>armed one. And Allah willed that He should cause the Truth to triumph by
>His words, and to cut the roots of the disbelievers.
>Well, here is how I've worked it out, but I don't know how right this is,
>in other words, does it make sense? >
Well, your translation is certainly accurate; but to my view the problem is
in the original, whether in the Arabic or the Engl. translation I can't say.
The first sentence makes perfect sense (moreso with a little judicious
editing-- like, get rid of the "and" before "you"-- as it stands, it's not a
complete sentence). The second sentence makes perfect sense (though that
"cut the roots" bit is a little odd-- maybe the translator didn't think of
"extirpate" ?). But what's the connection between the two? Not
immediately obvious IMO. My _guess_ would be: while we might hope for one
outcome over the other, it's not up to us. Allah knows the truth of the
outcome, and His will will prevail-- whether it's what we want, or not.
(Who then are the disbelievers? The enemy bands? Or those on our side who
presumed that Allah would do _our_ will, not His own?)
Whether a translator has the right to impose an interpretation on an unclear
passage, is of course another matter.
Now that I think about it, the whole passage becomes clearer if it's edited
to become a single sentence: "When Allah promised....., and [when] you
were hoping.....the armed one COLON OR DASH _then/but/nevertheless_ Allah
willed...... " All those sentence-initial "ands" are surely just a
rhetorical device, and need not be slavishly translated. (The KJV is guilty