Divinity of the Qur’an:
Read more and more the Qur’an
In its month of revelation
Dr. Mozammel Haque
The Noble Qur’an was revealed in the month of Ramadan (Al-Qur’an, 97:1-3.). The Qur’an was sent down in the month of Ramadan on the Night of Power Lailatul Qadr. (Al-Qur’an, 91:1-3.). It is the month of Ramadan that Allah has honoured by revealing the Qur’an. Because of this strong relation between the Qur’an and the month of Ramadan, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) used to read the Qur’an to Archangel Jibraeel every Ramadan. I think this is the right place to discuss the purpose and objective of the revelation of the Qur’an, its importance, the campaigns against it and the do’s and don’ts of the Qur’an.
First of all, Allah the Most High, created mankind and gave him the gift of expression. For the guidance of mankind Allah sent Prophets (peace be upon them all) to every single community. In the words of the Qur’an, "There has been no community to which God’s messengers have not come" and "Muslims should make no distinctions between them." So it is the duty of a Muslim to honour all the prophets equally.
The Qur’an represents the culmination of all other earlier Revealed Books. The Qur’an is the last of the Revealed Books. The Qur’an is the first religious book in the world, which requires the belief in other revelations, a part of its Faith. This Sacred Book was revealed to the last Messenger, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in the month of Ramadan. Allah Himself said in the Qur’an: “Ramadan is the (month) in which was sent down the Qur’an, as a guide to Mankind, also clear (Signs) for guidance and judgment (between right and wrong).” (2:185). Allah the Most High has especially mentioned the exact date and month of the revelation: “We have indeed revealed This (Message) in the Night of Power.” (97:1) So the purpose of the revelation of the Qur’an was for guidance of Mankind.
The Qur’an is emphatic in proclaiming that Islam is the religion of Jesus, Moses, Abraham and the Prophets Jesus and Moses were not Jews but Muslims. "Surely those who believe (in that which is revealed to Muhammad Peace be upon him) and those who are Jews, and the Christians, and the Sabaeans – whoever believes in Allah, and the Last Day and does good, surely their reward is with their Lord, and there is no fear for them nor shall they grieve." (2:62). "A Guidance for mankind and clear proofs for the guidance and judgement (between right and wrong)." This is the most important characteristic of the Qur’an, the Book that Allah has revealed in the month of Ramadan.
It is guidance for mankind. It is clear proof, clear proof of guidance and of judgement. The Qur’an is indeed a great miracle and source of blessing. The month of Ramadan, is a time that many Muslims rejuvenate their faith and take heed of the truth sent by Allah in the Qur’an unto mankind. Allah says; “This is the Book (the Quran), whereof there is no doubt, a guidance to those who are Al-Muttaqoon (the pious and righteous persons)”(Qur’an- Al-Baqarah, Verse 2)
A true miracle, manifestation of excellence, beautiful composition, wonderful coherence, accuracy in narration in both past and future events...It can only be The Qur’an- The Word of Allah and The Final Testament to Humanity. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: “Certainly there is always a thing in which people take pride and that which is glory and pride for my Ummah is the Qur’an” (Hadith- Hiyah)
The Qur’an is the masterpiece of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala Himself. The Qur'an is miraculous in a many aspects: It’s linguistic perfection and inimitability, its validation by recent historical, archaeological, and scientific discoveries, its prophecies and so on. The miracle of the Qur'an is eternal and many critics have embraced its message after carefully reading it. In fact the like of the Qur’an can never be matched. Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala Himself declares; “If mankind and the jinn were to gather together to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could never produce the like thereof, even if they backed up one another.”(Quran 17:88)
In it is a solution and guidance for all of Humanity. Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala says;
“This is the Book (the Qur’an), whereof there is no doubt, a guidance to those who are Al-Muttaqoon (the pious)”(Qur’an Al-Baqarah 2:2)
Before the revelation of the Qur’an, it was preserved and guarded from corruption in the "Mother of the Book". Allah Himself said: "Nay this is a Glorious Qur’an (inscribed) in a Tablet Preserved" (85:21-22). When Allah wanted to give this Trust to someone, the Heavens, the Earth, and the Mountains, i.e. other creatures of Allah, besides man, refused to undertake this Trust or responsibility. They preferred to submit their will entirely to Allah’s Will, which is All-Wise and Perfect, and which would give them far more happiness than a faculty of choice, with their imperfect knowledge. Allah says in the Qur’an: "We did indeed offer the Trust to the Heavens and the Earth and the Mountains; but they refused to undertake it, being afraid thereof: but man undertook it: He was indeed unjust and foolish." (33-72).
So it is the human beings who took the responsibility of the Trust without realising its importance. The Qur’an is the revealed book of God which has been in existence for more than four hundred years and the Word of Allah is available in its original form. There has not been an iota of change in this unique historic record. Its originality and authenticity has been guaranteed by no other than Allah the Almighty who challenges in the Qur’an itself.
Allah said, "This Qur’an is not such as can be produced by other than Allah: on the contrary it is a confirmation of (revelation) that went before it, and a fuller explanation of the Book - wherein there is no doubt – from the Lord of the Worlds." (10:37). In another verse of the Qur’an Allah challenges, "Or do they say, "He forged it?" Say: "Bring then a Surah like unto it; and call (to your aid) anyone who can, beside Allah if it be you speak the truth!" (10:38). "Or they may say, "He forged it." Say, "Bring you then ten Suras forged, like unto it, and call (to your aid) whomsoever you can, other than Allah! – if you speak the truth!" (11:13).
Allah said in the Qur’an, "And if you are in doubt as to what We have revealed from time to time to Our servant then produce a Sura like thereunto, and call your witness and helpers (if there are any) besides Allah, if you are truthful." (2:23) Allah places many verses before you. Can you produce one like it?
The world is challenged to produce a Book like it and has not produced one. It is the only Revealed Book whose text stands pure and uncorrupted today. Allah said, "Say: "if the whole of mankind and jinns were to gather together to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support." (17:88)
Since the revelation of the Qur’an, the enemies of Islam have been trying to distort it. Firstly, they said, it is not revelation, it is written by Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Then they started attacking its authenticity and originality. In spite of their conspiracy, the Qur’an has been preserved in its original form.
The Qur’an is the only Book in the world which has remained for the past fourteen centuries pure without any interpolation or change and will remain so till the Last Day as Allah has guaranteed its purity. (15:9).
The purity, preservation and propagation of the Qur’an were maintained by two methods: memorization of Qur’an in Qur’anic schools and the recitation of the complete Qur’an in Ramadan. In the month of Ramadan every year the Noble Prophet (peace be upon him) was asked by Archangel Jibraeel to recite the whole of it twice. It was a Muzakira between the two. Abu Huraira reported that Jibraeel used to repeat the recitation of the Qur’an with the Prophet once a year, but he repeated it twice with him in the year the Prophet (peace be upon him) passed away. The Qur’an was recited in the Taraweeh for the first time during the era of Caliph Omar.
So far as the memorization of the Qur’an in Qur’anic schools is concerned, many Huffaz and Islamic scholars have been killed in different parts of the world at different times. But still there is no dearth of Islamic scholars who can recite the complete Qur’an from memory. Severe campaigns have been launched against the Qur’anic schools, which teach the study, recitation and memorization of the Qur’an. The Qur’an is the main Book of the Muslims; it is the duty of the Muslims to learn Qur’an, which contains their code of life and ethical values whose benefits have been experienced by mankind throughout the ages.
I have already mentioned the objective and importance of the Qur’an and how its originality and purity have been maintained. Our Prophet (pbuh) and his Companions dedicated their days and nights for worship. Their lives revolved completely around the Book of Allah, the Qur’an, reciting it in and out of Salah.
The Qur’an is the basis of the religion of Islam, and on the preservation and propagation of the Qur’an depends the very existence of this Faith. Hence the virtue of learning and teaching the Qur’an is self-evident and does not need further elucidation. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The best amongst you is he who learns the Qur’an and teaches it.” (Bukhari, Daud and Tirmidhi).
A great Islamic scholar wrote in his book entitled Toward Understanding of the Qur’an: “The present arrangement of the Qur'an is not the work of later generations, but was made by the Prophet under God's direction. Whenever a surah was revealed, the Prophet summoned his scribes, to whom he carefully dictated its contents, and instructed them where to place it in relation to the other surahs. The Prophet followed the same order of surahs and verses when reciting during ritual Prayer as on other occasions, and his Companions followed the same practice in memorizing the Qur'an. It is therefore a historical fact that the collection of the Qur'an came to an end on the very day that its revelation ceased. The One who was responsible for its revelation was also the One who fixed its arrangement. The one whose heart was the receptacle of the Qur'an was also responsible for arranging its sequence. This was far too important and too delicate a matter for anyone else to dare to become involved in.”
“Not even the most sceptical person has any reason to doubt that the Qur'an as we know it today is identical with the Qur'an which Muhammad (peace be on him) set before the world; this is an unquestionable, objective, historical fact, and there is nothing in human history on which the evidence is so overwhelmingly strong and conclusive. To doubt the authenticity of the Qur'an is like doubting the existence of the Roman Empire, the Mughals of India, or Napoleon! To doubt historical facts like these is a sign of stark ignorance, not a mark of erudition and scholarships,” he added.
We see that many of the Pious Predecessors exerted themselves in the recitation of the Qur’an. Some would complete recitation of the whole Qur’an in three days. Others would recite it in seven or ten days as they realised its value.
Sometime we are so engrossed in the pursuit of our material objectives that we neglect the recitation of this great source of blessing. In its recitation there will always be benefit whether we truly comprehend the meaning of it or not.
Truly the benefits of reading the Qur’an are immense and in this month of Ramadan we should make a firm decision to make the recitation of the Qur’an a essential part of our daily diet which will Insha Allah pave our path to eternal happiness.
May Allah Ta’ala guide us to recite, appreciate and understand the true wisdom of the Qur’an and may He bless our hearts with the true noor (light) of the Qur’an. Ameen
Zikr and other forms of worship
Besides reading of the Qur’an
No doubt, reading of the Qur’an in the month of Ramadan, the month of its revelation, is the best way but besides that, one can do other way of worship, Ibadah, remembrance of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala. I have seen during the month of Ramadan, many people were doing Tawaaf in Haram or some people were performing Umrah and others were engaged in Zikr or remembrance of Allah the Almighty.
The Angels are remembering Allah the Almighty by saying the third Kalimah. Islamic scholars mentioned the beginning or the originality of the third Kalimah – “Subhanallah(i) Walhamdulillah(i) Wa La Ilaha Illallah(u) Wallahu Akbar Wala Hawla Wa La Quwwata illah Billah hil Aleyeel Azeem.” (There is no Power and Might except from Allah, The Most High, The Great) and up to this day, this kalimah (or declaration of faith) buzzes around the Arsh of Almighty Allah.
Story Behind Third Kalimah
The Third Kalimah has a unique and very interesting story behind it. It all started before Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala created Adam A.S.(peace be upon him) The Angels were trying to move the Arsh (Throne) of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala but it was too heavy and would not budge. So they asked Almighty Allah for help. Allah told them to recite “Subhanallah”. The Angels did as they were told and found that it gave them the power and strength and they were able to move the Arsh. They liked this so much that they began constantly hymning, “Subhanallah,” – (Glory be to Allah)
Then Allah created Adam A.S. When Allah blew life into Adam, the first thing he did was sneeze and say “Alhamdulillah” (All praise be to Allah). The Angels liked this act so much that they added this to their praise and glorification of Allah. Thus the kalimah became: “Subhanallah(i) Walhamdulillah”.
Hundreds of years passed and the Prophet Nooh A.S. (peace be upon him) was now on earth. For nine hundred years he proclaimed the oneness of Allah with the words: “La Ilaha Illallah”. (There is none worthy of worship). The Angels loved this act so much that they added this to the kalimah. Thus, the kalimah now became “Subhanallah(i) Walhamdulillah Wa La Ilaha illallah.”
The Angels kept repeating this kalimah day and night. Many centuries passed and the Prophet Ibrahim A.S. (peace be upon him) was asked by Almighty Allah to sacrifice his beloved son Ismaeel A.S. (peace be upon him). He was about to slaughter his son and He needed something to give him the courage he needed to do this difficult deed. So he recited: “Allahu Akbar”. (Allah is Great). The Angels loved this act so much that they added “Allahu Akbar” to the Kalimah. Thus the kalimah became: “Subhanallah (i) Walhamdulillah (i) Wa La Ilaha illah (u) Wallahu Akbar.”
More centuries passed. It was the Night of Meraj, when our Beloved Prophet Muhammad S.A.W. (peace and blessings be upon him) ascended to the Heavens with Gibraeel A.S. There Gibraeel A.S. (peace be upon him) told the Prophet S.A.W (peace and blessings be upon him) the story and the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) added the final part of the Kalimah: “Wala Hawla Wa La Quwwata illah Billah hil Aleyeel Azeem.”
Thus “Subhanallah(i) Walhamdulillah(i) Wa La Ilaha Illallah(u) Wallahu Akbar Wala Hawla Wa La Quwwata illah Billah hil Aleyeel Azeem.” (There is no Power and Might except from Allah, The Most High, The Great) and up to this day, this kalimah (or declaration of faith) buzzes around the Arsh of Almighty Allah.
Third Kalimah is Tamjeed, this is the Kalimah (the first part) that is recited 33 times after each Farz Salah (Namaaz), and is called Tasbih Fatima.
Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) says that if a person recites Ayatul Kursi after every Farz Salah Namaaz then there will be nothing between him and Heaven except “Death”.
There is another Tradition of the Prophet (PBUH) that says third Kalimah is such a great medicine that it cures every disease and the most minor disease it cures is – Sorrow (Gham)
Another Hadith says if a person recites Surah Ikhlaas 10 times a day then Allah builds a palace for him in the Heaven and the last but not the least ALLAH says spread the knowledge whatever you have; it is the duty of every Muslim.
May ALLAH accept our good deeds, especially in this blessed month of Ramadan. Ameen InshaAllah.