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August 24, 2011

Without making too much of it, nor indeed too little, this diagram represents a respectful and graphic understanding of the Quran at the present stage of interfaith investigation, illustrating the principle that clusters of material in the Quran can be identified as relating to God’s previous revelations to Zoroaster, shown in white. Those white portions, previously revealed to Zoroaster and recorded in the Avesta, were not “copied” into the Quran, any more than were the Hebrew Torah or Christian Gospel portions, identified in the diagram as striped and gray respectively. Such material was revealed afresh to Muhammad, though just as some verses of Hebrew and Christian Scriptures appear almost verbatim from the Bible record, the opening and closing of the Quran, Chapter 1 and Chapters 113 and 114, may have an almost literal affinity with the Avesta – a matter for Muslim scholars to adjudicate. In a more general sense, anything in the Quran that is related to Judgment Day, for example, should be correlated to earlier Zoroastrian revelations, just as references to the law given to Moses are correlated to the Hebrew revelations and allusions to Jesus as the messiah are correlated to the Christian connection. Confirmations of Hanif monotheistic oral traditions, and condemnations of Arabian idolatry, superstition and pagan practices are as obvious as the revelations rejecting Babylonian polytheism.

Posted by: Brian Arthur Brown