I am supposed to defend LEGAL PETITION before an Indian Court against - sanction of four wives by Quran as interpreted. Since most of the judges are non-Muslim hence the only reference will be holy Quran (normally Yusuf Ali / Sir Sayyed version is in practice in India). My following defense before non-Muslims will be subject to scrutiny by several Quranic Scholars who may come up with Hadith/stories interspersed with Quranic verse hence would appreciate your guidance particularly of Dr. Shabbir and Bro. Juwaid. I will seek forgiveness of Allah if I have made errors in understanding. My intention was to question blind religious sanctioning for multiple marriage without even first wife aware of husband secondl/third (secrete) marriages.
THE PRESENT VOWEL , FULL STOP IN QURAN ARE NOT ORGINALLY IN PLACE BY PROPHET (SA) WHILE INSCRIBING IT.
Early Quranic Arabic lacked precision because distinguishing between consonants was impossible due to the absence of diacritical marks (a’jam). Vowelling marks (tashkil) to indicate prolongation or vowels were absent as well. Due to this there were endless possibilities for the mispronunciation of the word. The Arabic script as we know it today, the scripta plena, which has pointed texts and is fully vowelled was not perfected until the middle of the 9th century.:92 (History of Quran Wikipaedia)
Most of the fundamental reform to the manuscripts of the Quran took place under Abd al-Malik, the ﬁfth Umayyad caliph (65/685–86/705). Under Abd al-Malik’s reign, Abu’l Aswad al-Du’ali (died 688) founded the Arabic grammar and invented the system of placing large colored dots to indicate the tashkil. The Umayyad governor al-Hajjaj ibn Yusuf al-Thaqaﬁ later enforced this system. Al-Hajjaj was one of the decorated but controversial commander in faith under Caliph Umar.
Several verses in Quran needs linking carefully with either preceding or following verses otherwise it becomes impossible to derive meaning of the verse. Thus the message derived out of context leads to bizarre , unacceptable rendition and multiple interpretation by self-glorified scholars throughout Islamic History/World. It is learnt that Quran was not allowed to translate for normal human until few centuries back when some efforts were being made to translate . It appears the present vowel may be for convenience of Qiraat (eloquent recitation) which is widely popular amongst Muslim simultaneous to Hifz of Quran at all the time instead of understanding it. Alexander Ross, 1649, tried from Arabic to French followed by George Sale, 1734, Koran, Commonly called The Alcoran of Mohammed, Translated into English immediately from the Original Arabic; with Explanatory Notes, taken from the most approved Commentators. Such restriction on understanding (tadabbur) message of Allah is violation of Quranic Chapter 54/Qamar repeating that “ we have made Quran easy provided you understand its messages’’. It is difficult to grasp massages of Quran by taking verse out of context . This led to categorize Ulmas, Muhaddis, Mujtahids, Fuqhas, Sufis etc who introduced their own branches/conjectures to write huge volume of Tafseer (explanation) on verse deviating from real humane message of Quran. It is like Allah mean to say composition of water (H2+O forms water) , but ignorant will infer Hydrogen with Hydrogen bomb and Oxygen to assist burning as out of context version.
OUT OF CONTEXt LINKING CAN CREATE HUGE DEVIATION IN ALLAH'S MESSAGE
For example verse 9:5 is branded as VIOLENT verse or Verse of Sword , but if we read it from 9:1-6, it shows only defense or fight in case of breach peace treaty and even offer asylum to Prisoner of war of enemy. Similarly marrying four wives may have derived from the verse taken out of context. The relevant verse 4:3 if linked partly to 4:2 which is pertaining to protecting the property of orphan the message is clear. This verses clearly says YATEEM which means Orphan ( Orphan can be boy or girl/woman but most have translated it as girl /woman only for marriage) unlike 4:127 which is clearly specifying YATEEM- NISSA (orphan woman). Thus mixing of Orphan/YATEEM (male/femal) with YATEEM NISSA (orphan woman for marriage) caused interpretation of four wives. Thus part of 4:3 may be linked with 4:2 to clarify on YATEEM and part of verse for marriage with unspecified number. It has further indicated in 4:127 when sought clarification on woman for payment of dowry which is mandatory. YATEEM appears in Quran about 23 times and has special emphasis throughout Quran to do justice with them (4:127), not mixing up their property ( 4:2) , it is like swallowing fire into bellies if they consume Yateem property ( 4:10), and not even approach Yateem property but to use for best of intention (6:152) and to he handed over to them once they achieve maturity ( age of marriage) 17:34/4:6. With all these stringent guards to Orphan how can we interpret this verse to marry off Orphan (girl/boy up to four ) or their mothers etc etc. Here the FATWA from Allah is for the caring of weak (4:127).
Whereas our scholars insist upon following our prophet - as sunnah - ( they claim our prophet (sa) to have married 9 to 11 woman) then why restricting present Muslims to marry four, why not 9 or 11 as prophet (sa) sunnah ?
IT APPEAR MULTIPLE MARRIAGES NOT RESTRICTED TO ANY PARTICULAR NUMBER
Additional spouse has to come responsibily as
1) If difference between couple has irreconcilable it is subject to divorce as decreed in Quran (waiting period, arbitration and two revocable divorce and final irrevocable divorce). Since marriage/Nikah (agreement) is considered as solemn-pledge (4:21) and witnessed, it has to go through similar procedure of arbitration, reconciliation and witnessing as you can not break pledge which is considered Solemn by Allah abruptly. Multiple marriage is Islam has historical background as was done during Caliph Umar when Islamic army was widely spread world-wide. It was periodical relief for humanity of the time.
2) Prophet (sa) had option for multiple marriage to migrant relatives and refugees women or ( believer women migrated) during the war/-situation. Same as Germany opted reluctantly in Munich conference in 1948 for polygamy to balance sex ratio due to world war. (33:50 , 66:10 )
3) Prophet had option when wife had broken secrecy/confidentiality (66:1-5). Prophet can free his wives if they opted world life more than hereafter (33:28)
METAPHORICAL PHRASE/WORD TWO THREE FOUR
In verse No: 35:1 the phrase “two three four” is exact replica as in 4:2 for marrying up to four woman. This number is metaphor for addition of creation by Allah. Their multiplicity ("two, or three, or four") is perhaps meant to stress the countless ways in which He causes His commands to materialize within the universe created by Him (Asad) or These are Instruments of Allah’s Will and may have a few or numerous Errands entrusted to them (Yusuf Ali) . “Two three four” appears to be metaphor for multicity (unceasing) such as - in this case of creation of Allah. All Praise is due to Allah, the Originator of all Highs and their Lows, Who appoints His angels as message-bearers having wings two, three and four. (Many of the angels, the physical laws in the Universe, have more than one function). (Dr. Shabbir). Same metaphor of marrying two three four has been taken out of context to restrict marriage to four. This phrase may shows multicity.
It may not be count/number considering overall message of Quran that 4:82 Quran will certainly not contradict itself. 39:18 Anyone who listen [closely] to all that is said, and follow the BEST (meaning) of it. (39:23) Quran is best Hadith/message as its message oft repeated hence we cannot take only one verse for our interpretation. (39:55) follow the best teaching that has been revealed to you . 14:24-27 The good word/message to be like tree with firm root yielding fruit and to be steadfast in present life and hereafter.
Furthermore Quran curb multiple marriage as in 4:3 saying " if you cannot treat your wives equally then restrict one". This rationale is further elucidated in 33:51 referring to Prophet is supposed to treat his other wives as if to “cool their eyes and they should not grieve ( fully satisfied)”. However, it is further enlightened by Allah that " it is not possible to treat your second/other wives with justice however you try (4:129)" and Prophet (sa) was restrained to marry for beauty 33:52. This can be good sunna for us – to follow prophet (sa) as ordained to Quran (sa) by Allah. Whatever PHRASE TWO/THREE/FOUR mean , it cannot contradict clear message of Quran to restrict monogamy in normal case in the name of Islam.