Elucidating the Word: Sayyid Aḥmad Khān (1817-1898), revelation, and coherence

Ramsey, Charles Magee (2015). Elucidating the Word: Sayyid Aḥmad Khān (1817-1898), revelation, and coherence. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Sayyid Aḥmad Khān (1817-1898) was a prominent religious reformer and educationist in pre-partition India. One of his least understood works is \(Tabyīn\) \(al-kalām\) \(fī\) \(tafsīr\) \(al-taurāt\) \(wa\) \(‘i-injīl\) \(‘alā\) \(millat\) \(al-Islām\) (\(The\) \(Elucidation\) \(of\) \(the\) \(Word\) \(in\) \(Commentary\) \(of\) \(the\) \(Torah\) \(and\) \(Gospel\) \(According\) \(to\) \(the\) \(Religion\) \(of\) \(Islam\)), or as the author simply termed it: ‘The Mohomedan Commentary on the Holy Bible’ (1860-1865). In this dissertation I examine \(Tabyīn\) along with other principle works in the original Urdu to enquire: how did Sayyid Aḥmad conceptualize revelation in the Bible? I argue that he employed a systematic paradigm to categorize all prophetic revelation, the identification of which opens the way for a clearer understanding of our author’s attitude towards the Bible. In this light, \(Tabyīn\) emerges as a prototypical example intended to demonstrate that prophetic texts share greater consonance than dissonance if universal principles are applied to regulate interpretation. Sayyid Aḥmad’s view of the coherence of all revelation, natural and prophetic, allowed for a reverent but critical juxtaposition of the Bible with Islam’s primary textual sources as initiated in \(Tabyīn\), and continued in his final exegetical work, \(Tafsīr\) \(al-Qur’ān\).

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion, Department of Theology and Religion
Funders: Other
Other Funders: British Library
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BP Islam. Bahaism. Theosophy, etc
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/5914


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