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Monday, May 18, 2015

Arabic-a legacy carved in stone

It is a mistake to believe that Arabic is an important language for Arabs and Muslims only. It is true that the Holy Quran is in Arabic and it was also spoken by Prophet Muhammad PBUH. However, it is wrong to assume that Arabic and Islam began together.

Arabic is one of the Semitic languages and has been derived from the Aramaic script; a language spoken in Aram which is now central Syria. It is the lone surviving member of the Ancient North Arabian dialect. Some inscriptions date back to the 4th century whereas Islam arrived in the 7th century.

Today, Arabic is spoken by over 300 million people. The language that is spoken in Middle Eastern and North African countries such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt, UAE ,Turkey and Libya is not only for religious enlightenment but is a way of life that has it roots embedded in culture and tradition that prevailed in the pre- Islamic era

Arabic is accepted these days in the West as a key language of correspondence for cultural and economic exchanges. This makes Arabic the 5th most spoken language in the world.

Arabic Calligraphy has been contribution to the the world of arts and many architects throughout history have adorned their masterpieces with this beautiful art form. The heart and soul of one of the seven wonders of the world- the Taj Mahal is Arabic calligraphy carved on a magnificent marble canvas. The Persian calligrapher, Amanat Khan is said to have chosen the passages from The Quran, himself, and include four surahs. Some of this selection form the essentials of the Muslim funeral prayer.The calligraphy type chosen was Thuluth (meaning "one-third" in Arabic).

Arabic thus, is just not a sacred language for the followers of Islam but is truly a universal language and has left a legacy for mankind to cherish in all walks of life be it art,medicine,architecture, science or philosophy.When you learn Arabic you do not just learn a language, you unlock a chest of knowledge and aesthetics.


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