An Infidel Reads the Quran: Surah 12: Joseph


It’s a retelling of the story of Joseph from Mohammed.

It’s mostly the same story you heard from the bible, but a bit more preachy and Mohammed is really trying to highlight a few of his existing teachings along the way.

Also, Joe is still a jerk and even more of a Mary Sue in this version.

Unrelated, on the topic of hell, someone commented that Islamic hell wasn’t eternal torment, but was based on annihilation of the soul. That didn’t seem to jibe with the fear of being set on fire and drinking boiling water in the afterlife, so I dove into the rabbit hole of teachings on Islamic hell.

And yeah, turns out there are different schools of thought on the topic. There’s even the thought that Muslim hell is more of a Purgatory where people go to suffer for their actions and when that suffering is completed, they will return to God. Yep. Universalist Muslims. Interesting, right?

So in the interests of being as fair as possible, I’ll refrain from further comments or jokes about being set on fire forever and just refer to it as ‘hell.’

Also, I was informed that there were additional sayings of Mohammed that were collected outside of the Quran. Now, I can’t promise that I will ever get to those, but I was told that most Muslims follow both the Quran and at least some of these additional sayings as the basis for their faith and that does make me a bit curious as to how those read as well as the seeming need that most religions have for addendum. But that’s a rabbit hole for a different day.

Suffice to say, the Quran, while clearly an (and perhaps even the most) important influence, on Islamic faith isn’t the only influence. And it’s kind of fun for the first time since I started reading this book to be learning about a part of the world that I knew nothing about before.

Of course, the downside is that these ‘tangents’ are far more interesting to me than the actual book itself.

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One thought on “An Infidel Reads the Quran: Surah 12: Joseph

  1. Photon

    There is another thing that might be important to know. I’m not sure if someone else has already mentioned it before. Like the epistles of Paul, the Surahs in the Quran are not ordered chronologically but mostly by length. And since Muhammed’s revelations got longer with time, the earlier Surahs are at the back of the Quran. (Reading the Quran front to back is nonetheless the order suggested by many Muslims.)

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