Paper Title
Symbolic Language in The Stories of Bible and Quran: A Comparative Study between Song of the Songs and Chapter of Ants

Religious texts are a wide field for the use of symbolic language in general, and this language deepens in historical stories so that it carries multiple connotations. The gap between those connotations widens with theologians, to the extent that the apparent meaning that comes to mind becomes an interpretation that no one pays attention to it! In Mishnah and Midrash, Jewish exegetes understood the Song of Solomon as an allegory of the love between God and the nation of Israel, while Christian theologian, started from Hippolytus, found a story of love in this song between Christ and the church. As for the stories of the Qur’an, Muslim theologians strictly interpreted the details of the prophetic stories as historical events that do not depart from the apparent meaning except in some simple rhetorical references, but Muslim Mystics had a completely different standpoint. For them, Quranic stories were a fertile breeding ground for the mystical imagination, and Ibn Arabi, for example, drifted with his interpretations in his two books: Fusūs al-Hikam and al-Futuhat al-Makkiyyah and provided a mystical fantasy for the story of King Solomon in Chapter of Ants. Jalal al-Din al-Rumi made use of the Qur’anic stories based on dialogue - such as the dialogue of al-Khidr with the Prophet Moses, and the dialogue of Satan with the Creator - to compose other stories that have no basis in Qur’an or Hadith at all, but it served his preaching vision and his educational method. Mathnavi of Rumi is full of stories created by Rumi’s imagination about prophets, shepherds, Caliphs and ferries, which he presented in a fascinating way to extract lessons and wisdom from them, noting that his justification of this invented stories lies in interpreting them symbolically exactly as Ibn Arabi did in Fusus al-Hikam. This paper is presenting three different approaches relevant to symbolic language of sacred text and its theological or mystical interpretations. Keywords: Symbolic Language, Song of the Songs, Mishnah. Rumi, Ibn Arabi, Allegorical.