The renowned scholar and Sufi master, the late Dr Martin Lings (Shaykh Abu Bakr Siraj ad-Din) was working on a full translation of the Qur’an when he passed away. The Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought, who had commissioned Dr Lings to translate the Qur’an, and the Islamic Texts Society were granted access to his papers. The Publishers extracted from these previously unpublished writings, and from all his other publications, his translations of verses from the Qur’an. These are here presented as The Holy Qur’an: Translations of Selected Verses accompanied by the original Arabic text on facing pages. Among the translations are the all-important first chapter of the Qur’an (al-Fatihah); full translations of the Chapter ‘The God of Mercy’ (ar-Rahman) and ten other Chapters including the often-repeated last three; the Verse of Light (ayat an-Nur); verses from the Chapter entitled Ya Sin which is regarded as ‘the heart of the Qur’an’; and numerous other verses from seventy-six other Chapters. In addition, there is an appendix of Dr Lings’ translation of the Ninety-nine Beautiful Names of God with the original Arabic and transliteration; and a cross-referenced index which is intended to work as a minor concordance.
For all those wishing to learn about the Qur’an, for non-Arabic-speaking Muslims, for students of Arabic and translation, for scholars of Islamic studies, The Holy Qur’an: Translations of Selected Verses is a short and accessible introduction with the additional benefits of the profound learning of an eminent scholar and the beautiful language of a published poet. Dr Martin Lings is the author of among others Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources, What is Sufism? A Sufi Saint of the Twentieth Century, The Book of Certainty and Sufi Poems.
This translation conveys something of the beauty of the language of the Sacred Text as no other English translation has been able to do. It is a major addition to the corpus of Qur’anic translations.
- Prof. S. H. Nasr, George Washington University
These translations by a master of the English language who is also an eminent student of the Qur’an are of inestimable value.
- Gai Eaton, author of Islam and the Destiny of Man
In addition to his stunning classical English, Dr Martin Lings was both a master of Arabic and a brilliant scholar of Islam. This rare combination of skills made him the ideal candidate to translate the Qur’an.
- Hamza Yusuf, Zaytuna Institute.
Martin Lings (1909–2005), also known as Abu Bakr Siraj ad-Din, was an English writer, a student of Frithjof Schuon and a renowned British Shakespearean scholar, with degrees in English and Arabic from London University and Oxford University. At Oxford, he studied English under C. S. Lewis, who later became a close friend. Lings taught at several European universities and the University of Cairo and served as the keeper of Oriental manuscripts for the British Museum and the British Library. His friendship and similar beliefs with philosophers René Guénon and Frithjof Schuon inspired Lings to convert to Islam. He went on to become an influential member of Western Muslim society, participating in several international Islamic councils and conferences, including acting as a consultant to the World of Islam Festival Trust. He is the author of twelve books on religion and spirituality.