Search - Decoding the Past - Secrets of the Koran (History Channel) on DVD

Decoding the Past - Secrets of the Koran (History Channel)
Decoding the Past - Secrets of the Koran
History Channel
Genres: Television, Documentary
NR     2006     1hr 31min

The Koran is one of the most important works ever written. For almost one billion people worldwide, it is the Holy Scripture, the word of God and his prophet. For others, it is a historical artifact that has left an indeli...  more »


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Movie Details

Genres: Television, Documentary
Sub-Genres: Television, Documentary
Studio: A&E Home Video
Format: DVD - Black and White,Color
DVD Release Date: 07/25/2006
Original Release Date: 01/01/2006
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2006
Release Year: 2006
Run Time: 1hr 31min
Screens: Black and White,Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Introductions to the message and Messenger of Islam
Kim Boykin | New York, NY | 01/31/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I'm very pleased with this DVD, which actually contains two programs: "Secrets of the Koran" and, as a bonus feature, "Muhammad" from A&E's "Biography" series. I've used excerpts from both of these programs in teaching world religions in college and high school. Both programs honor the Muslim tradition of not depicting Muhammad or members of his immediate family.

"SECRETS OF THE KORAN" (91 min.) is an excellent documentary on the history of the Koran and its interpretation. Topics include the religious and social milieu into which Muhammad was born; the life of Muhammad and the revelation of the verses of the Koran; the early Muslim community; the compilation of the Koran; the Koran's relationship to Jewish and Christian revelations; the Muslim understanding of the apocalypse and judgment; difficulties in the interpretation of the Koran; jihad; the Koran's emphasis on the value of knowledge; the golden age of Islam; the Crusades; Islamic fundamentalism; and violent vs. peaceful understandings of the message of the Koran.

"MUHAMMAD" (42 min.) isn't a biography precisely. Rather, it's a presentation of the traditional story of the life of Muhammad, with commentary by scholars who are Muslim or sympathetic to Islam (including two of the usual suspects, Karen Armstrong and John Esposito). This program does a good job of bringing the story of Muhammad to life, and because it's so concise, it may be more useful in my teaching than "The Message" (a three-hour movie about the life of Muhammad), which is also good.

Some other good videos on Islam:
- "Inside Islam" (History Channel);
- "Muslims" (Frontline);
- "Inside Mecca" (National Geographic)."
Customer | Washington, DC United States | 12/02/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This program is from History Channel and has two parts: Origin (revelation) of the Koran and Jihad (i.e. moral "struggle" in English) and how Muslims interpret the Koran. There is a bonus section of Prophet Muhammad's biography. Don't expect you'll see actors to perform as Pro. Muhammad and his immediate family as it is against the Muslims' beliefs. DVD quality is better than most HC's historical documentaries.

Minus one star because there's no mention of Five Pillars of Islam (the profession of faith, five prayers a day, charity, fasting during the month of Ramadan, and the pilgrimage to Mecca)."
Christopher M. Fulton | Streator, IL United States | 01/19/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Having watched it when it aired on television, I had decided I had to own this. This helped me to better understand the Koran. It is one thing to have read the Koran, it is another to have it explained (such as it were) by Muslims and scholars. All in all, this was a very informative, well presented look into the Koran and Islam; where it came from and where it may go in the future."
Basic Overview
S. B. Anderson | USA | 04/19/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

""Decoding The Past: Secrets Of The Koran" is a good documentary covering all the basics of the Holy book of Islam. Additionally, a biography of prophet Muhammad is included as a special feature, which I thought was a welcome bonus.

The Secrets Of The Koran is a well done, well researched DVD, covering most of the questions a typical Westerner might have about Islam's interpretation of this holy text. One thing I found appealing is the fact that the program addresses extremism in Islam, and explains how the fundamentalists take the verses of the Koran out of context by reading incomplete verses that suit the extremists' purposes.

The biography of Muhammad was much more tame, and exceptionally politically correct. The biography itself was rather short and covered the basics of the prophet's life, also concentrating on Islam as a whole, and reverting back to the Koran. I expected the program to be more about the prophet himself, as the original Secrets Of The Koran already covered other aspects.

I do recommend this DVD as a starting point for anyone who has no knowledge of the Koran or prophet Muhammed. Very educational and to the point, it leaves one with many questions to be answered through further research."