(Q. 12:2) We have sent it down as an Arabic Qurʾān:Praying behind the Lisper

(Q. 12:2) We have sent it down as an Arabic Qurʾān:Praying behind the Lisper Muslims are required to recite the Qurʾān properly according to the complex rules of Qurʾānic recitation. This is especially the case during liturgical practices such as ritual prayers. The leader ( imām ) of congregational prayers ( ṣalāt al-jamāʿah ) is expected to be more learned in the Qurʾān than the individuals he is leading, and a better reciter. The case of the lisper ( al-althagh ) poses a challenge: An imām who lisps would be reciting the Qurʾān incorrectly and, in many cases, might change the meaning of the verses. In this article I discuss the problem of the lisper and the situations in which he is allowed to serve, or is forbidden from serving, as an imām for a group of individuals. I also discuss and analyse the positions of several jurists from different schools of law after first providing background on lisping, speech disorders and the general requirements of imāmah . http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Islamic Law and Society Brill

(Q. 12:2) We have sent it down as an Arabic Qurʾān:Praying behind the Lisper

Islamic Law and Society, Volume 23 (1-2): 23 – Mar 14, 2016

(Q. 12:2) We have sent it down as an Arabic Qurʾān:Praying behind the Lisper


imāmatu l-althaghi li’l-faṣīḥi fāsidat un fī l-rājiḥi l-ṣaḥīḥi (Al-Khayr al-Ramlī d. 1081/1671) Introduction The Successor Yaḥyā b. Waththāb (d. 103/721) was, according to al-Ṭabarī (d. 310/923), the chief reader of late-first-century Kūfah. His student al-Aʿmash (d. 148/765) is reported to have said: “Yaḥyā b. Waththāb was the most skilful in Qurʾānic recitation. When he would recite the Qurʾān in the mosque, one could not hear the slightest motion from the congregation; [it was] as if the mosque were empty.” 1 Only when Yaḥyā b. Waththāb died did people start to flock around al-Aʿmash to study the Qurʾān. 2 ʿĀṣim b. Abī al-Najūd (d. 127/745), whose Reading is among the seven canonical Readings of the Qurʾān, also testifies to Yaḥyā’s mastery of recitation: “ kāna wa-’llāhi qāriʾ an . ” 3 Yaḥyā b. Waththāb was a client ( mawlā ) of Banū Kāhil of Banū Asad b. Khuzaymah, and he was of Persian descent from Qāshān-Iṣbahān. 4 After settling in Kūfah, he became an influential Qurʾān master and reader who led the ritual prayer ceremony. 5 Indeed, he became an imām who led “his own people” ­( qawmahu ) in prayers. At some point, al-Ḥajjāj b. Yūsuf (d. 95/714), then governor of Kūfah, decreed that non-Arabs were no longer allowed to lead prayers in Kūfah. 6 When Yaḥyā’s “people” asked him to step down as their imām , al-Ḥajjāj asked: “Who is this man and why is he stepping down?” Someone answered: “This is Yaḥyā b. Waththāb. You have decreed that only Arabs may lead prayers.” 7 Al-Ḥajjāj exclaimed: “I have not forbidden the likes of him [from leading prayers]!” ( laysa ʿan mithli hādhā nahaytu ). 8 The anecdote does not end with the Kūfan governor reinstating Yaḥyā as the imām of the Persian community in Kūfah, but rather with Yaḥyā exhibiting signs of...
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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0928-9380
eISSN
1568-5195
D.O.I.
10.1163/15685195-02312p02
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Muslims are required to recite the Qurʾān properly according to the complex rules of Qurʾānic recitation. This is especially the case during liturgical practices such as ritual prayers. The leader ( imām ) of congregational prayers ( ṣalāt al-jamāʿah ) is expected to be more learned in the Qurʾān than the individuals he is leading, and a better reciter. The case of the lisper ( al-althagh ) poses a challenge: An imām who lisps would be reciting the Qurʾān incorrectly and, in many cases, might change the meaning of the verses. In this article I discuss the problem of the lisper and the situations in which he is allowed to serve, or is forbidden from serving, as an imām for a group of individuals. I also discuss and analyse the positions of several jurists from different schools of law after first providing background on lisping, speech disorders and the general requirements of imāmah .

Journal

Islamic Law and SocietyBrill

Published: Mar 14, 2016

Keywords: lisper ( althagh ) ; prayer ( ṣalāt ) ; imām ; Qurʾān ; Islamic law ; Arabic language

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