Maulana Wahiduddin Khan| Quranic Wisdom | Al-Risala, June 1987

The Quran states that God instructed His Prophet to say to his opponents: “I stand by the clear evidence from my Lord, yet you deny it.” (6:57). This shows that a Prophet in this world stands on the bedrock of reason. His is not an idle claim: he is supported by clear evidence.

The disbelievers, on the other hand, are recorded by the Quran as saying, “Those who deny the truth say, ‘Do not listen to this Quran. Drown it out with noise, so that you may gain the upper hand.’” (41:26).

Those who wish to reject a statement but who cannot counter it with sound arguments, not infrequently fall back on derision or ad hominem. That is to say that they attempt to discredit the state­ment by shouting it down and raising false or irrelevant objections to it. In every age, this is what the Prophets have had to suffer at the hands of their opponents.

The way to deal with a statement of which one is critical is not to make personal attacks upon the speaker, or add to, or subtract from, or distort the original statement, but to counter it with some rational argument supported by an array of facts. This is sound and correct criticism, and as such is not only permissible but desirable. On the other hand, rejecting a statement outright without referring to it in its original form, and without presenting any cogent argument against it, is an unfair and reprehensible practice.

When the exponent of a fact, or facts expresses himself in a cool and reasoned way while his opponents adopt a derogatory or even defamatory tone, this difference in approach is a sure indication that the former is in the right and his opponents are in the wrong. The Quran tells us that the language of the prophets is the language of reason, while it is the men of no faith who mouth the language of disparagement.