Some Important Questions on the Definition of Qatee
This brief write-up is based on the comments of our respected fellow, Tauqir Hussain Sahib. He presented a definition of Qati’at on behalf of Muhtaram Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Sahib. While we do not ascribe this definition to Ghamidi Sahib academically, we would like to explain a few points with reference to this definition. Our analysis is based on Tauqir Sahib’s reference to Ghamidi Sahib. Tauqir Sahib is not alone in referring this definition to Muhtaram Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Sahib. We have heard it from many of our respected friends and teachers. Hence, we would like to address this definition.
Our view is that this definition is incorrect, flawed and has no historical and academic reference. We have analysed this definition by raising two streams of questions. One stream of question is addressed to academic scholars (Al-Mawrid Scholars). The other stream is addressed to all. These questions are structured in a manner that it will help understand why this definition is incorrect, flawed and without any historical and academic backing.
Taquir Sahib writes:
It seems a misconception understanding Ghamidi sahib’s view. Word of God could be understood differently by different people according to their “fehm” but author presented it with only one meaning from His side. His fehm is “Furqan” and ” Meezan” and “Qatee”. God knows best.
From this paragraph, we understand that Tauqir Sahib says:
Allah presented the Holy Qur’an with a single meaning. This single meaning resides in the Holy Qur’an. Different people understands the Holy Qur’an differently. But this single meaning is there in the Holy Qur’an and absolutely Qatee.
We believe that this definition is incorrect, flawed and has no historical and academic backing. Now we would the present two streams of questions to help establish our viewpoint.
First Stream of Questions: Addressed to Academic Scholars (Al-Mawrid Scholars)
1) Did Imam Razi deny Qati’at of the Holy Qur’an in this sense of the word “Qatee”?
If yes, please provide the reference. I, after more than a decade of research on this topic, am still unable to find any reference whereby Imam Razi denied such Qatiat of the Holy Qur’an. Muhtaram Javed Ahmad Ghamid criticized Imam Razi without providing any reference to this definition from any of Imam Razi’s works.
If Imam Razi did not deny Qatiat of the Holy Qur’an in this sense of the word; then why Ghamidi Sahib criticized Imam Razi and others?
2) If Imam Razi did not deny Qatiat of the Holy Qur’an in this sense of the word “Qatee”, who else denied Qatiat of the Holy Qur’an in this sense of the word?
Apart from Imam Razi, Muhtaram Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Sahib did not provide any other reference who denied Qatiat of the Holy Qur’an in this sense of the word. Who did Muhtaram Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Sahib criticize? Please provide any reference, since none is given in the writings of Ghamidi Sahib.
3) Apart from Ghamidi Sahib, who else from among the meritorious scholars of this Ummah had used the term “Qatee” in this sense of the word?
Please provide any reference, since none is given in the academic works of Muhtaram Javed Ahamed Ghamidi Sahib
4) Where in his academic works Ghamidi Sahib himself has described this definition?
Please provide any reference. I have not found this definition in his works.
5) If Ghamidi Sahib himself has not written this definition anywhere, why his associates continue to refer to this definition while defending his viewpoint?
This is not an academic approach. Either Ghamidi Sahib should write this definition in his works, or his associate should not quote this definition.
6) Is it academically correct that based on your self-conceived meaning of a term, you criticize scholars of the calibre of Imam Razi and others?
I think this is wrong not only academically but also morally.
Second Stream of Questions: Addressed to All
1) If the Holy Qur’an can be understood differently by different people, how do we know that it is supplied with one single meaning?
2) What is the benefit of supplying the Holy Qur’an with one single meaning, when believers would continue to understand it differently?
3) Of all the meanings understood by different people, which is the God’s intended meaning and hence Qatee?
4) If, for example, Ghamidi Sahib’s meaning is Qatee for him and Islahi Sahib’s meaning Qatee for him? Can we conclude that:
- i) Allah presented the Holy Qur’an with two Qatee meanings?
- ii) If two meanings can be Qatee? Then, please help me understand what is Qatee and what is Zanni?
5) When, for example, Islahi Sahib, changes his interpretation from one meaning to another meaning of a verse, both (the previous meaning and the fresh meaning) are Qatee?
If every meaning is Qatee, then let’s pack up and go somewhere where reason prevails.