Does it really matter which Pharaoh it was that opposed Moses and ended up being drowned? Does it really matter how the waters parted to let Moses through, or, indeed, whether the waters parted at all in the literal sense of the word?

We shouldn’t trap ourselves in trivia; we shouldn’t become obsessed with technicalities. We need to understand the meaning of Pharaoh and the meaning of Moses. We need to understand the meaning of the sea, and what it means to drown in it; we need to understand the meaning of waves parting and allowing Moses through. What does the story mean? What does Pharaoh represent? What significance does the Moses/Pharaoh story have for our lives, at this very moment, in the here and now? When do I act like Pharaoh and why should I be like Moses? What does their struggle mean for me personally?

We need to stop busying ourselves with unimportant detail, much of which is impossible to know anyway. Why should I waste my time trying to understand how big Noah’s boat must have been in order to take two pairs of every animal on it? When am *I* Noah and when am *I* Noah’s son? When do I run to the mountain, thinking that it will save me from the flood? What does that mountain mean, and what does a flood signify? The Quran addresses us personally, each and every one of us, and it addresses us in the here and now. Unfortunately, too many of us treat these narratives as though they were just historical stories, included in the Quran for our amusement.

There is an English saying: “The Devil is in the detail.” It means that details can be tricky, and that we should pay careful attention to them. However, I understand completely the opposite from it. I believe it means that if we pay *too* much attention to detail, the Devil will have us by the throat.

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