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VoiceOfRa 16 July 2015 07:20 PM
56%


"The earth is flat" is a sentence that only has 1 interpretation.


That's because there hasn't been a movement that has motivation to reconcile professing to believe the truth of the sentence "The earth is flat", with believing that it isn't.


Do you mean an that we should just take a completely literal reading of everything that's in the Koran, and this and only this can be called "true Islam"?


Something like that, with possibly the Hadith. Basically take the Koran the way it was meant to be interpreted.


In this case we'll probably reach a conclusion that there is no such thing as a "true Muslim".


I'm not sure about that, granted I haven't read the Koran, but I'm guessing you haven't either. In any case, it should certainly be possible to figure out who is more or less a true Muslim.


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melian 17 July 2015 04:27 AM
71%

Basically take the Koran the way it was meant to be interpreted.

It took Muhammad over 20 years to write all the Koran verses. Since the tactical situation was constantly changing during this period, there are many contradictions between the early and late verses. There is no single interpretation that would be logically consistent with all of them.


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Fwiffo 17 July 2015 08:37 AM
56%

an interpretation can take into account the context of utterance. So I think such interpretations are possible even if they are not popular.

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Alice 17 July 2015 05:00 PM
68%

My understanding is that, like with other religious text, Koran contains a number of contradictory rules. It is probably part of the success of these religions, and their survival through so many years, that you can cherry-pick and adapt to your current situation. E.g. if you do one thing, you'll have one verse to cite it, and if you do the opposite there will be another verse you can cite. This is why I said that under the literal interpretation criterion, there is no such thing as a true Muslim (or Jew or Christian, for that matter). It is impossible to completely follow such religious texts, because of the contradictions in them (which may have been seen as a feature and not a bug). Also, some texts are written intentionally vaguely and allegorically, so it is not at all clear what literal interpretation means for them.

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petergast 30 October 2015 10:16 PM
67%

> I haven't read the Koran, but I'm guessing you haven't either

I have read the Koran twice, and various books about Islam. It is by no means obvious to me whether there is one true interpretation and what it might be.

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VoiceOfRa 31 October 2015 10:34 AM
62%

> I have read the Koran twice, and various books about Islam.

I'm guessing most of those books are largely devoted to rationalizing why the Koran says X, when just reading the Koran alone, it's clear that it doesn't.


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Fwiffo 17 July 2015 08:35 AM
59%

Bible literalists are often viewed as not reading it quite as it was supposed to. Sometimes such fundamentalists are seen as a divertion of the contemporary view on christianity. The principles should remain the same when we change the book tobe Koran and the religion to be Islam.

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VoiceOfRa 17 July 2015 07:43 PM
62%

That's why I explicitly said to read it the way it was meant to be read.


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Fwiffo 18 July 2015 01:33 AM
59%

The standard interpretation of the bible isn't that much based on the book itself but its surrounding culture. It doesn't contain a "how to read" section (atleast not that explictly). The parent posts seem like you are trying to emphasise the text over the interpretation culture and here doing the reverse. I have trouble reconciling how both descriptions apply to a single stance on the issue or whether the issue is that your stance is inconsistent.

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VoiceOfRa 18 July 2015 11:27 AM
58%

My point is to avoid stupid straw positions like attempting to take the parables literally.


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Fwiffo 18 July 2015 11:33 AM
56%

Well if there is an argument on what is the proper way to take a parabel is there an objective way to resolve it? That is, is it possible to determine what a parabel "says"? If significant amount of content is problematic in this way then recourse to book is a useless standard (as it leaves a significant portion of the content hanging).

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VoiceOfRa 19 July 2015 11:29 PM
62%

Well, look at the parable and see if either of the interpretations would sound reasonable to someone who wasn't desperately trying to rationalize the parable with whatever other beliefs you want to make it consistent with? Also, look at it from the point of view of the author, would an author who had your supposed interpretation in mind have written the parable that way (or written it at all)?

While I'm not saying that it's always possible to find a unique right interpretation, there are many potential interpretations that are clearly wrong. Including ones that I've seen cited by religious authorities.


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Fwiffo 28 July 2015 08:45 AM
55%

For those that others find extreme the meaning might perfectly natural to the one that is making it. Usually if a person is rationalizing something they are not aware that they are rationalizing.

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VoiceOfRa 28 July 2015 08:40 PM
63%


For those that others find extreme the meaning might perfectly natural to the one that is making it.


Well in a lot of cases the "extreme" meaning is in fact the natural true meaning. For example, from my limited knowledge of the Koran, ISIS does appear to be closest to the true interpretation.


Usually if a person is rationalizing something they are not aware that they are rationalizing.


This applies to everything, yet in most domains you wouldn't use this argue that it's impossible to find the truth.


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