In your article “Directives of Shariah regarding Edibles,” I read that the word “Maytah” in 2:173 is used in traditional sense and not literal sense. Shouldn’t the verse of Quran be interpreted in literal sense? What is the criterion that decides whether a verse should be understood in literal or traditional sense?
It is not in the case of the word “Maytah” only, but in the understanding of the Qur’an in general that we need to fully grasp the classical usage and the meanings of the words and phrases. It is for this reason that we believe that is extremely important to have good knowledge of the pre-Islamic Arabic language of the Quraysh to fully understand the Qur’an.
I hope this helps.
March 1, 2005