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Posts tagged ‘Rights of the Quran’

8
May

The Rights of the Quran and some tips on how to fulfill them – Part 5

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamu Alaikum.

[Here are Parts 1, 2, 3 and 4.]

5) To call to it

It’s not enough to just apply the Quran ourselves, rather we also need to invite others to apply the Quran as well.

After all, what was the main role of the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam)? He was sent to call the people to worship Allah alone. So his primary role was dawah (calling to Islam).

Sadly, in these times, we have become very lax in fulfilling this right.

How does one do dawah?

Well, I hope to discuss that in greater detail in a future post, insha-Allah. For now, the following points should suffice:

a) Start with tawheed (worshipping Allah alone).

And no, not everyone knows about tawheed. If they did, I wouldn’t have come across as many dropped jaws as I did.

Tawheed is the most important thing and everything else is based upon it. Only the people of tawheed will exit Hell and only the people of tawheed will enter Paradise.

b) Talk about what you know

This one sounds obvious but given the amount of people who talk about matters in which they have zero knowledge, I guess it’s not that obvious….

c) Talk with proof

[Yes, I know that this particular post does not have any proof. Forgive me, it’s midnight at the moment.]

“I said”, ” I think”, “My shaikh said”, “My parents said” and “I heard someone say” are not counted as proofs, I’m afraid.

Proof = Allah said, Allah’s Messenger (sallalahu alaihi wasallam) said and the Companions of Allah’s Messenger said. This is what Islam is based on.

d) Be nice.

I repeat: Be nice.

I repeat yet again: BE NICE.

The above might sound like simple steps but they do make a lot of difference.

6) To do the above all the time

This is the last right and it entails fulfilling all the rights of the entire Quran consistently.

Failure to fulfill these rights would mean that we have abandoned the Quran. So we need to make sure that we try our best to do as much as we can.

May Allah make us of those who fulfill the rights of the Quran.

22
Apr

The Rights of the Quran and some tips on how to fulfill them – Part 4

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamu Alaikum.

[Here are Parts 1, 2 and 3.]

[A very important note: I’ve mentioned my email address on this blog so that SISTERS can contact me. I’ve said this over and over again.

I do not want any emails from any brothers and I will not reply to anyone that does so. There are plenty of brothers around to ask questions to, so why email a woman for the answers??

Also, I would advise all the brothers to only comment on the blog when necessary in order to avoid any fitnah (trials).

I would advise the sisters to do the same when they read blogs run by brothers i.e. comment only when necessary.]

4) To act upon it

One of my former teachers told us something I’ll never forget. She said: “The Quran was not revealed except to be applied.”

Subhan Allah, the reason that it stayed with me was because she was my hifdh (Quran memorisation) teacher! Many times, we tend to forget the real purpose of the Quran and just focus on memorising.

Allah revealed the Quran to inform us how we need to worship Him and the rewards that one gets for doing that. He also mentioned the people of the past who worshipped Him and the good end that they got, despite all the hardships that they endured.

The last right that I discussed was understanding the Quran. Understanding should lead to pondering which should lead to action.

Action of what, you ask?

– Action of the heart

This includes love of Allah, hoping in Him, fearing Him, and putting one’s trust (tawakkul) in Him.

Action of the tongue

This include dhikr (remembrance) and good speech.

– Action of the limbs

This includes praying, giving charity, fasting, doing Hajj, showing good manners, keeping family ties, serving guests, etc.

Allah mentions two kinds of people in the Quran: the good ones and the bad ones. He also mentions the characteristics of each.

Why? So that we can work on attaining the good characteristics and avoiding the bad ones.

Allah didn’t just reveal the Quran for us, rather He sent us someone to teach the Quran and explain it to us in detail.

Indeed, the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) showed us how to act according to the Quran.

فَقُلْتُ يَا أُمَّ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَنْبِئِينِي عَنْ خُلُقِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏.‏ قَالَتْ أَلَسْتَ تَقْرَأُ الْقُرْآنَ قُلْتُ بَلَى ‏.‏ قَالَتْ فَإِنَّ خُلُقَ نَبِيِّ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم كَانَ الْقُرْآنَ

“I (Saad ibn Hisham) said: Mother of the Believers, tell me about the character of the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). She said: Don’t you read the Quran? I said: Yes. Upon this she said: The character of the Messenger of Allah (sallalahu alaihi wasallam) was the Quran.” [Sahih Muslim, Hadeeth No. 1623]

[The above is part of a very long hadeeth.]

So, we need to know the sunnah and also read his seerah (biography) in order to be able to follow in his footsteps. This way, we’ll be applying the Quran.

Applying the Quran is not the impossible task that some people make it out to be. We might not be able to apply each and every aspect but we need to start and then proceed to improve step by step.

Let me give you two simple examples that illustrate how we tend to overlook the easy stuff:

Example No. 1:

Suppose one is reciting the Quran and  comes across this ayah (verse):

إِنَّ الْمُسْلِمِينَ وَالْمُسْلِمَاتِ وَالْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتِ وَالْقَانِتِينَ وَالْقَانِتَاتِ وَالصَّادِقِينَ وَالصَّادِقَاتِ وَالصَّابِرِ‌ينَ وَالصَّابِرَ‌اتِ وَالْخَاشِعِينَ وَالْخَاشِعَاتِ وَالْمُتَصَدِّقِينَ وَالْمُتَصَدِّقَاتِ وَالصَّائِمِينَ وَالصَّائِمَاتِ وَالْحَافِظِينَ فُرُ‌وجَهُمْ وَالْحَافِظَاتِ وَالذَّاكِرِ‌ينَ اللَّـهَ كَثِيرً‌ا وَالذَّاكِرَ‌اتِ أَعَدَّ اللَّـهُ لَهُم مَّغْفِرَ‌ةً وَأَجْرً‌ا عَظِيمًا

“Verily, the Muslim men and women, the believing men and women, the men and the women who are obedient, the men and women who are truthful, the men and the women who are patient, the men and the women who are humble (before their Lord Allah), the men and the women who give Sadaqaat (i.e. zakah, and alms, etc.), the men and the women who observe Saum (fast), the men and the women who guard their chastity (from illegal sexual acts) and the men and the women who remember Allah much, Allah has prepared for them forgiveness and a great reward (i.e. Paradise).” [Surah Al-Ahzab (33) : 35]

Here, Allah mentions ten traits of the people of Paradise. So one should strive to achieve all these traits.

Now, what’s the FIRST thing that one should do in order to achieve these traits?

That would be dua (supplication).

[This would also cause one to get closer to applying one of the above traits: remembering Allah much.]

Amazingly, most people forget this step! Yet Allah says:

وَقَالَ رَ‌بُّكُمُ ادْعُونِي أَسْتَجِبْ لَكُمْ ۚ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَسْتَكْبِرُ‌ونَ عَنْ عِبَادَتِي سَيَدْخُلُونَ جَهَنَّمَ دَاخِرِ‌ينَ

“And your Lord said: “Invoke Me, I will respond to your (invocation). Verily! Those who scorn My worship [i.e. do not invoke Me, and do not believe in My Oneness, (Islamic Monotheism)] they will surely enter Hell in humiliation!”” [Surah Ghafir (40) : 60]

So, by doing dua to Allah, we apply the above ayah and we also open the doors to applying the other ayaat (verses).

[Of course, many people, when they come across the above ayah, forget to do dua, so that’s another loss for them.]

Example No. 2:

Suppose one is reciting Surah Al-Furqan. Allah mentions some traits of His slaves:

وَعِبَادُ الرَّ‌حْمَـٰنِ الَّذِينَ يَمْشُونَ عَلَى الْأَرْ‌ضِ هَوْنًا وَإِذَا خَاطَبَهُمُ الْجَاهِلُونَ قَالُوا سَلَامًا

“And the slaves of the Most Beneficent (Allah) are those who walk on the earth in humility and sedateness, and when the foolish address them (with bad words) they reply back with mild words of gentleness.” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 63]

وَالَّذِينَ يَبِيتُونَ لِرَ‌بِّهِمْ سُجَّدًا وَقِيَامًا

“And those who spend the night before their Lord, prostrate and standing.” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 64]

وَالَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ رَ‌بَّنَا اصْرِ‌فْ عَنَّا عَذَابَ جَهَنَّمَ ۖ إِنَّ عَذَابَهَا كَانَ غَرَ‌امًا

إِنَّهَا سَاءَتْ مُسْتَقَرًّ‌ا وَمُقَامًا

“And those who say: “Our Lord! Avert from us the torment of Hell. Verily! Its torment is ever an inseparable, permanent punishment. Evil indeed it (Hell) is as an abode and as a place to dwell.”” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 65-66]

وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا أَنفَقُوا لَمْ يُسْرِ‌فُوا وَلَمْ يَقْتُرُ‌وا وَكَانَ بَيْنَ ذَٰلِكَ قَوَامًا

“And those, who, when they spend, are neither extravagant nor niggardly, but hold a medium (way) between those (extremes).” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 67]

وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَدْعُونَ مَعَ اللَّـهِ إِلَـٰهًا آخَرَ‌ وَلَا يَقْتُلُونَ النَّفْسَ الَّتِي حَرَّ‌مَ اللَّـهُ إِلَّا بِالْحَقِّ وَلَا يَزْنُونَ ۚ وَمَن يَفْعَلْ ذَٰلِكَ يَلْقَ أَثَامًا

“And those who invoke not any other ilaah (god) along with Allah, nor kill such life as Allah has forbidden, except for just cause, nor commit illegal sexual intercourse and whoever does this shall receive the punishment.” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 68]

وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَشْهَدُونَ الزُّورَ‌ وَإِذَا مَرُّ‌وا بِاللَّغْوِ مَرُّ‌وا كِرَ‌امًا

“And those who do not witness falsehood, and if they pass by some evil play or evil talk, they pass by it with dignity.” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 72]

وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا ذُكِّرُ‌وا بِآيَاتِ رَ‌بِّهِمْ لَمْ يَخِرُّ‌وا عَلَيْهَا صُمًّا وَعُمْيَانًا

“And those who, when they are reminded of the Ayaat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) of their Lord, fall not deaf and blind thereat.” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 73]

وَالَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ رَ‌بَّنَا هَبْ لَنَا مِنْ أَزْوَاجِنَا وَذُرِّ‌يَّاتِنَا قُرَّ‌ةَ أَعْيُنٍ وَاجْعَلْنَا لِلْمُتَّقِينَ إِمَامًا

“And those who say: “Our Lord! Bestow on us from our wives and our offspring who will be the comfort of our eyes, and make us leaders for the Muttaqoon (pious).”” [Surah Al-Furqan (25) : 74]

Now, obviously, we would start with dua (supplication) i.e. that we become of His slaves mentioned in this Surah. This trait is also mentioned in the above ayaat (that they don’t invoke anyone except Allah).

What next? What else can one apply RIGHT NOW?

What about the the two ayaat in red? Both of them are supplications that these slaves say, so what’s stopping us from reciting these two duas (in Arabic obviously) so that we can at least start to attain two of the traits mentioned??

Now, someone might say “Hey, what if a childless 90 year old widow is reciting the last ayah? What’s the point? She’s too old to have a husband or kids!”

The ultimate point of reciting this dua (or any other dua for that matter) is not to get the husband and kids.  The point is to worship Allah.

So, we should recite these duas no matter what our circumstances are.

Interestingly enough, one of the traits mentioned is those who when they are reminded of Allah’s ayaat, are not deaf. If one takes the above steps, one will avoid being deaf to the ayaat but if one just recites without paying attention to what they are reading, haven’t they acted contrary to this trait?

So, we should remember to interact with the Quran and try to apply whatever we can.

And we definitely shouldn’t forget the easy stuff.

To be continued…

22
Jul

The Rights of the Quran and some tips on how to fulfill them – Part 3

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamu Alaikum.

[Here are Parts 1 and 2.]

[Note: I forgot to mention one thing with regards to reciting the Quran: we are supposed to MOVE OUR LIPS.

It seems that some people think that one can recite “mentally”. They do this in the silent prayers too!

No, we need to MOVE OUR LIPS.]

In the last part, I had promised some resources for understanding the Quran so here goes:

1) Word to word translations:

If you want to buy a nice, authentic translation, then you could try out the Darussalam set. Here’s a sample page.

This one by Brother Muhammad Mohar Ali is supposed to be quite good as well, and it also gives the root words apparently (this is good for those studying grammar).

It’s available in Darussalam (in Sharjah).

Oh and here’s a nice software for mobile phones.

Some (free) online websites which provide the word to word translation are:

[Note: I haven’t checked all of them thoroughly. It’s always better to use more than one resource so as to be able to catch any errors. You can always pray Salatul Istikhara (prayer for guidance) before trying any of these out.]

http://www.allahsquran.com/learn/

http://www.emuslim.com/Quran/Translation_English.asp

http://www.quraninenglish.com/cgi-local/pages.pl?/contents

The following three sites seem to come from the same source. The last one is still new (and is still being worked on).

http://www.studyquran.co.uk/Quran_ArabicEnglish_WordforWord_Translation.htm

http://corpus.quran.com/wordbyword.jsp

http://beta.quran.com

I would advice caution with the above sites, especially the last three ones as some of the founders seem to believe in “self-studying” the Quran.

If you’re looking to learn Quranic vocabulary, you might want to use a Quranic dictionary which introduces the NEW words in a juz.

Here are two good ones:

The Easy Dictionary of the Quran

The Concise Dictionary of the Quran

Here’s a short pamphlet which goes through 80% of the words in the Quran in many languages. And here’s a nice website based on the pamphlet.

2) Various tafsirs of the Quran:

Well, I suppose this is a good time as any to advertise one of my other blogs:

http://attafsir.wordpress.com/

The aim of this blog is to gather all the authentic articles and lectures of tafsir out there, insha-Allah.

What books of tafsir are out there?

Well, there’s an abridged version of Tafsir ibn Kathir available online.

The print version is available at Darussalam.

Question:

One of my friends (who reads a LOT of Islamic literature) found Tafsir Ibn Kathir a bit “difficult” to understand. I was shocked to hear this from her (of all people).

So, my question to all of you is: How many of you feel the same way? And why?

[And no, I’m not asking just for the sake of asking. I have an idea, you see.]

Another tafsir (sort of) that you can read is the 9 volume version of Muhsin Khan’s translation. It has lots more notes than the 1 volume one. It’s also available at Darussalam.

[Question: Why is it that most people don’t know that this set exists?]

 Another tafsir that is available only for the last four juz so far (27-30) is Tafsir Minhaji. I don’t have it but I’ve heard good things about it from someone who has read it. Here’s a sample page.

Another basic tafsir that is available in English is Tafsir Ahsanul Bayan. It’s originally an Urdu work, and is quite good according to a friend of mine. The Urdu book is supposed to be just one volume but the translation is 3 volumes (and counting as they still haven’t finished the whole set)!

Why? “The font is bigger”, said the Darussalam guy.

What about other tafsirs?

Well, there are some tafsir sets which go through the whole Quran. However, they have mistakes in them. I don’t think that they are beneficial for laymen at all which is why I’m not going to mention them here.

Apart from these, there are various books which focus on just one surah like Dr. Bilal’s Tafsir Surah Al-Hujuraat. These are an excellent source of tafsir as well.

To be continued…

2
Jun

The Rights of the Quran and some tips on how to fulfill them – Part 1

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamu Alaikum.

Last year, I put up a lecture on the rights of the Quran.

Here is a summary of its rights:

1) To believe in it

2) To recite it

3) To understand it

4) To act upon it

5) To call to it

[6) To do the above all the time]

Now, how can we can actually fulfill these rights especially with the month of the Quran almost here?

Here are some tips that might be useful, insha-Allah.

1) To believe in it

Well, here is the main obstacle that this ummah (nation) faces today when trying to keep in touch with the Quran: many Muslims secretly have doubts about the Quran.

They don’t directly say it of course but one can easily understand that they do when they say things like “Polygamy is not correct” or “Capital punishment is cruel” or “Times are different now.”

These are the same people who call for “reinterpreting the Quran”. They also reject many authentic hadeeth. Why? Well, because it goes against their beliefs.

There’s a problem here, of course. Being a Muslim means we take our beliefs from the Quran and the Sunnah. It does not mean that we come in with a bunch of pre-conceived notions then try to interpret Islam in a way that suits our desires. That is not called submission.

Submission is letting Allah and His Messenger dictate what we should and should not do.

So, how can we fulfill this right of the Quran?

Well, we need to take everything that it tells us as the truth. We need to judge everything else according to it and not the other way around.

For example, suppose someone mentions a scientific “fact” that goes against the Quran. We need to accept what the Quran says and reject this scientific “fact”.

Another way would be to learn aqeedah (creed). This is one way of increasing oneself in certainty and iman (faith).

Also, there’s a nice book, called “How to Approach and Understand the Quran” by Jamal Zarabozo, that talks about the proper way to approach the Book of Allah. [No, I don’t think that it’s online.]

2) To recite it

The proper way to recite the Quran is explained in a science known as “tajweed”.

It is mandatory for a person to read the Quran with tajweed (i.e. following the rules of recitation). Why? Well, if one recites the words incorrectly, it could lead to changing the meaning.

So, how can you recite the Quran with tajweed?

1) Get a teacher ASAP. You cannot do this alone as someone has to be there to spot your mistakes.

2) Practice, practice, practice and after that, practice some more.

What if you have no teachers in your area? Well, try to get one of those online teachers. [Warning: Some of them these online Quran teachers are cheats. A relative of mine had a bad experience with one of them.]

Also, you could try to keep listening to the ayaat (verses) over and over again.

The following websites would be helpful:

http://tanzil.net/

http://www.houseofquran.com/

For tajweed rules, one may refer to the following websites:

http://www.abouttajweed.com/

http://www.tajweedinenglish.com/

http://www.readwithtajweed.com/

[Oh and I have some useful stuff on my Haafidh blog as well.]

For those who have no way of getting a teacher, the following two series may help:

Correct your recitation by Muhammad Salah

The Noble Emissaries by Yasir Qadhi

To be continued…