Explaining his understanding of the concept of the Quran to a Catholic audience, Yusuf Estes says:
Well, when you hold it like that and say “Quran”, its not really a oxymoron, but it doesn’t make sense, I’m gonna tell you why. Because what you have in your hand is a kitab, that’s a book, OK? It’s not Quran. You can’t hold Quran in your hand. Why? “Quran” means that which is being recited. So, its like holding up a hymnal, and saying, “This is music.” No its not! It represents music when you put it down and start playing it. But as long as you hold it in your hand its just a book of paper… But in fact, it’s the same problem we have when people say, “This is Quran,” and its not.
Source: “Forum for a Better Understanding” (TV program), hosted by Jim Grant, 165th weekly edition, re-titled “A Catholic TV Interview with Sheikh Yusuf Estes Talking about the Quran” (part 1) on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQpu1FAnbWA (beginning at the 10:40 point), uploaded on Dec. 18, 2010.
This is what Yusuf Estes chooses to say when invited on to a Catholic TV show to present his religion to a Christian audience. He uses this opportunity to compare the Book of Allah with Christian hymnals, which are the books of sheet music used in their formal prayer services.
The Quran is the Eternal Speech of Allah, the Almighty. It is one of His perfect Attributes, which must never be considered similar to the attributes of anything else. To say that Allah’s Speech is like such-and-such is called tashbeeh, and it is a form of kufr (disbelief).
Nu’aym ibn Hammaad, one of al-Bukhaaree’s teachers (may Allah have Mercy on both of them), said:
“Whoever likens Allah to anything in His Creation has disbelieved.”
And Is-haaq ibn Raahawayh (may Allah have Mercy on him) said:
“Whoever describes Allah by likening His Attributes to the attributes of any of the Creation of Allah is a disbeliever in Allah, the Great.”
Ibn Abil-‘Izz al-Hanafee (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
“Ahlus-Sunnah are united upon the fact that there is nothing like Allah, not regarding His Actual Presence, nor regarding His Attributes or Actions… Whoever likens the Attributes of the Creator to the attributes of the creation is a Mushab-bih (someone who makes tashbeeh), a blameworthy person of falsehood.”
For the sources of these three important quotes, refer to pp.21-22 of the following free e-book on this subject: