It's supposed to be god talking, but you'll never know that by reading the book because it never tells you. What kind of dipshit writes an entire book and never identifies the characters ? Scene Development = F!
So you find somebody to explain that it is god talking, and you read right at the beginning that god is worshipping himself. Then in the fourth line god says "You alone WE serve" If this means anything it means there is more than one god; saying such a thing is Shirk, the muslims tell us, the worst crime there can be. So god is committing the one sin that will doom him to hell. What a dope, god.
One functioning synapse is enough to tell you that someone else is talking TO god, so why didn't the translator write that? Maybe because the muslims want it this way. They even have a name for it, iltifat, and they're fucking proud of it.
...Muhammad had created an entirely new literary form ...
...The dynamic style of the Qur'an is an obvious stylistic feature and an accepted rhetorical practice. ...
...The Qur'an is the only form of Arabic prose to have used this rhetorical device ...
Then there's this thing called 'editing', where you get on the phone and scream at a publisher if they get the sections of your manuscript out of order. The early Arabs never figured out this 'editing' thing for their koran object; I don't call it a book because books have actual beginnings, and ends, with plots, narrative structure, at least chronology for chrissake. This is 6000 verses all stuck together at random, not in sequence, not arranged by topic, just pin-the-verse-on-the-donkey order. Supposedly they're arranged from longest to shortest chapter-as if that made any sense-but they couldn't even get that right:
Well, okay, ignoring that this is supposed to be god's perfect book, why is it like that? Tradition says thatWhen Prophet Muhammad used to receive a revelation, he dictated it to a Companion, who wrote it down on anything that was available: bark, stone, bones, leaves, etc.
wait...what? leaves? They wrote on bones and leaves? Papyrus had been around for 4000 years. It was invented in the Nile delta, and was a major export on the caravans going through their back yards, driving their economy; and they wrote on leaves? I think not. Tradition paints a picture of gathering everybodys' notes, like an unlabeled shoebox full of Gramma Flo's old photos, and dumping them in a pile. What tradition doesn't say is that they started grabbing whichever one they picked up off the top of the pile and made it the next verse. But tradition is all you've got, as there's no historical records, and everyone argues about the details, which is like nailing Jello to the ceiling. Usually, to back up their version of the koran they cite sources:
The Qur'an is the only divine book that God has sentAnd how do we know this? Because it is written in Surah 5:
"To you We sent the Scripture (Book) in truth,(Surat 5:48)Ha! I'll see your proof and raise you. Here's the proof that you're wrong.
And how can we prove this? Because it is written in Annotation 2.
The whole thing is really fucking stupid, because even a good account of how it was done doesn't explain why things were done that way, in the face of some pretty fucking obvious reasons why they shouldn't. Like good writing: Is it really necessary to tell us 40 times that God is forgiving and kind? Even once would be overdoing it: It's god, isn't that in it's job description? By the 33rd time he reminds us that he is all mighty and all wise, I'm not buying it.
It garbles up entire stories, too. I counted story of Moses and the Pharoahs in there 18 times, and the details don't match up. One time the Pharaoh drowns, another time he doesn't. Which is odd since the koranophiles constantly try to devastate us with this argument:
If it had not come from God, they would have found in it many contradictions (4:82).
No shit, Sherlock. Like this one:
2:253 Of all these apostles We have favored some over the others.
2:285 We make no distinction between the apostles.
Thanks to Kafirgirl for spotting that, but if I had a nickel for every contradiction in the koran I could afford fill up my gas tank. There is in fact a miracle in the holy koran, and it is that blatant contradictions obvious to an aphasic blind illiterate are invisible to moslems. Well, wait, they're not all invisible, there's whole schools devoted to the problem of "abrogation". Whoever's passing himself off as god said,
None of Our revelations do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, but We substitute something better or similar (2:106).Well, you all-mighty and all-wise and all-plural gods, why didn't you just say something better in the first place? The expert scholars' verdict on it is this: there are between 0 and 700 abrogated verses, although no one agrees on which ones, or what order they go in, and "This is the Scripture whereof there is no doubt(2:2). Oh, and if you don't interpret it correctly you'll be tortured in hell forever,--just BTW.
How about this for an explanation? While Mohamed was alive he rode serious herd on the cult, and if he wanted your opinion he'd fucking well tell you it. When you have absolute power you don't want anybody writing shit down or recording your emails. After he died and they had to start thinking for themselves, and couldn't, they were all like "What would our Master® do? And they started arguing, and they still are, over little things like who got to be mo's successor, the shia or the sunni, which they fought over for 20 years and then had a civil war. Somewhere in that 20 years they set up a committee to standardize all the various versions of history that they they remembered, or claimed to remember in the interest of promoting their political faction. Memories got put down as Hadith (in some other book) or Surah (in the koran).
Hadith: somebody claimed to remember that Mo said something
Surah: somebody claimed to remember that Mo said god said something.
So why'd they end up with this weird ordering? Probably got sick of it and said "Fuck it! Just print the goddamned thing the way it is. I've got pussy waiting at home." It's hard to believe, but starting with Mo himself, moslems have been challenging anyone to produce verses better than the koran. It's the famous Surah Challenge:
If you are in doubt concerning that which We have sent down onto Our servant (Muhammad), then produce a chapter of the like thereof, and call your witnesses, supporters, who are apart from God, if you are truthful. (al-Baqara, 2.23)
Dude, I could eat alphabet soup and shit verses better than these.