Qurbân: constantly standing before ALLÂH (SWT)

Lexical framework Qurbân in its plainest form denotes `to draw close, to be close`. The word is of the same metre as Qu

Lexical framework

Qurbân in its plainest form denotes `to draw close, to be close`. The word is of the same metre as Qur?ân, furqân, sultân. It is a metre into which falls the infinitive fu?lân being a hyperbole mood. It refers both to continuity and to its root meaning?s brimming with all the positive connotations. Lexically, it covers all the positive meanings of `getting close.` The ultimate point of drawing close to ALLÂH (SWT) is `standing before ALLÂH (SWT)`. Qurbân means `constantly standing before ALLÂH (SWT).`

 The word qurbân or `kurban` as used in Turkish is a quotation coming from the Qur?an (5:27; 3:183). In the Turkish language it is used in abstract form both in the sense of udhiyya (adhâ, adâhi, dahâya) - the sacrificial animal offered during the Festival of Sacrifices and the Hajj sacrifice (hady). `Adak kurbanı` is the Turkish equivalent for nazr and `akika kurbanı` for ?aqeeqah. Such words as nusuq, nusq, mansaq, nazr, nahr, zabh, zibh, zabîh, which are used in the Qur?an, also belong to the field of associations of the word `qurbân`.

Conceptually, qurbân converges with several Qur?anic concepts. Here belong for example tabtîl, which is a manner of devotion that was ordered to ALLÂH?s Messenger (SAWS) at the very beginning of the process of revelation of the Qur?an (`Remember thy Sustainer's name, and devote thyself unto Him with utter devotion` (73:8)), and nazr (3:35), which expresses the dedication of Maryam by her mother to be devoted to the service of ALLÂH (SWT). Both nazr, which expresses institutional dedication in the Hebrew tradition and tabtîl, which expresses individual devotion as used in the Qur?an, refer to the sacrifice of a lifetime to ALLÂH (SWT). Infaq (spending on others) and sadaqah (charitable deeds) denote the sacrifice of wealth. Waqf is the sacrifice of land or property intended for religious, educational, or charitable use. Shahadah is the sacrifice of one?s life. In fact, the words pertaining to misaq (i.e. a solemn pledge) and ahd (i.e. a bond) could also be considered as `the sacrifice of words` by virtue of being utilized in the same field of meaning as that of sacrifice.     

Qurbân: Divine warning against becoming worldly-minded

What is meant by qurbân is certainly not `the drawing close of ALLÂH (SWT)`, but rather `drawing close to ALLÂH (SWT)`. It is indicated by the particular phrase `at-taqarrub ila ALLÂH` and not `qurbu ALLÂH`, which would express reciprocality of the action of drawing close. It is so because, in fact, ALLÂH (SWT) Is Close; moreover, ALLÂH (SWT) Is Closer to His servant than his jugular vein; It is about whether or not the servant is close to ALLÂH (SWT). And qurbân or the sacrifice, like all the acts of worship, brings the servant closer first to his own personality and then to ALLÂH (SWT).

It is meaningful that the sacrifice is the offering of wealth. The message given thereby is clear: to prevent the worldly goods, which ALLÂH (SWT) Bestows upon man, from becoming a barrier between man and his Sustainer. The sacrifice is a means for using the worldly blessings, bestowed upon man by his Sustainer, so that man does not grow distant, but rather draws closer to his Sustainer. It is, in essence, an instruction, `O man, do not become worldly-minded!` The choice it points to in the dilemma of `owning - belonging?` is the first one. In other words, it teaches the right way of truly owning wealth and not belonging to it. For, when man assumes wealth to be property, he cannot give it. One cannot own that which one cannot give. One belongs to that which one cannot give. When man assumes wealth to be a trust, he can give it. Man truly owns wealth when he gives it for the sake of ALLÂH (SWT).

Like many other acts of worship, sacrifice is not an act of worship that appeared with the mission of call to Islam entrusted to the Prophet Muhammad (SAWS). We understand it from the Qur?an that the sacrifice was also ordained to earlier communities: `Unto every community [that has ever believed in Us] have We appointed [sacrifice as] an act of worship` (22:34). The word mansaq, occurring in the quoted verse, as a paradigm signifies simultaneously all the three meanings of `sacrificing an animal, the time of sacrificing an animal, and the place of sacrificing an animal.` However, as shown by the use of the word nusuq, which derives from the same root, with accent on its being `an act of worship` in 6:162, the sacrifice as an act of worship is, figuratively speaking, the `mother` of all the acts of worship  from the historical point of view.

This is confirmed by the story of the two sons of Âdam related in Sûrah Al-Ma'idah (verse 27). The two sons of Âdam known as Hâbil and Kâbil (or implicitly: "the two belonging to children of Âdam`, i.e. mankind) offered their sacrifices to ALLÂH (SWT). As we learn it from the Genesis section of the Torah (4:1-8), the offering made by Hâbil, who was engaged in raising livestock, was accepted whereas the offering made by Kâbil, who was engaged in farming, was not accepted. The reason for which Kâbil?s offering was not accepted is not the sacrifice?s being made from the agricultural produce, but its being made from the worst of the available. Neither "jealousy" nor "meanness" is the name of that emotional deviation having started this process which led to Kâbil?s becoming a fratricide. That poisonous feeling is called `the exclusive love of the life of this world.` The viciousness of this emotional deviation is expressed in the following statement of ALLÂH?s Messenger (SAWS): `The exclusive lo