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How to really read and draw benefit from the Holy Quran

It has been mentioned in the Hadith that the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said:  With me, the best form of worship is recitation of the Holy Quran.  It has also been mentioned:  On the Day of Judgment, there will be no intercessor greater than the Holy Quran before Almighty Allah.  Neither any Prophet nor any angel nor anybody else.

 

Hadhrat Imam Abu Hamid Ghazali (May Allah shower His Mercy on him) says:  The Holy Quran is not just for reciting but to act upon it.  Recitation is only to remember it and remembering is to act upon it.  If any person recites the Holy Quran but doesn’t act upon it, then it as if the Word of Allah Most High reached him, which has obligations and prohibitions and that person kissed it and recited it in a beautiful voice, but didn’t follow it.  That person certainly deserves to be punished.  For this reason, Muslims should make sure that along with reading it, they should act upon the commandments of the Holy Quran as well.

 

The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said:  The hypocrites of my Ummah will all be reciters of the Holy Quran.

 

Hadhrat Sufyan Thauri (May Allah shower His Mercy on him) said:  The angels (in charge) of hell will make haste in catching the sinful reciters of the Holy Quran.

 

Hadhrat Hasan Basri (May Allah shower His Mercy on him) said:  The earlier people understood that the Holy Quran is a letter from Almighty Allah.  In the nights, they would contemplate over it and in the day, they would act upon it and now people have made it a custom that they take great pains to recite it properly, but are lazy in acting upon it.

 

Hadhrat ‘Abdullah bin Mas’ud (May Allah be well pleased with him) says:  Recite the Holy Quran, as there are 10 virtues for every letter of the Holy Quran.  I don’t say that “Alif Laam Meem” is 1 letter but that each of them is a separate letter.  Thus, “Alif Laam Meem” is comprised of 3 letters.  Better than all good deeds is recitation of the Holy Quran.

 

The good deeds of Hadhrat Rab’ee bin Khushaim (May Allah shower His Mercy on him) would be so secret that even his family members wouldn’t be aware of them.  When he would be reciting the Holy Quran and someone would come to him, he would hide it with his sleeve and say:  That act which is not performed with the intention of seeking Almighty Allah weakens one.

 

Hadhrat ‘Ali (May Allah be well pleased with him) says: The person who recites the Holy Quran standing in Salaat will be given 100 virtues in lieu of every letter.  The person who recites the Holy Quran sitting in Salaat will be given 50 virtues.  The person who recites the Holy Quran with ablution outside of Salaat is granted 25 virtues.  The person who recites the Holy Quran from memory without ablution is given 10 virtues.

 

Hadhrat Ahmed bin Muhammad Hareeri (May Allah shower His Mercy on him) says:  The person who recites the Holy Quran out of desire of paradise is pleased with a lesser thing than the greater one.  This is because paradise is creation and the Holy Quran is not a creation.  The big benefit of reciting the Holy Quran is that the reciter realizes the relation of the Holy Quran with Allah Most High and he/she understands what Allah Most High is saying.

 

Is there anything to say of that person who recites the Holy Quran for worldly gains?  The person who recites the Holy Quran for worldly benefits, the blessings of the Holy Quran are taken away from that person.  He also says:  The whole of the Holy Quran is nothing but 2 things:  (1)  Etiquette of life. (2)  Reverence of Almighty Allah.

 

There are 6 outward and 6 inward proprieties of reading the Holy Quran.

 

The 6 outward proprieties

 

1.    To read the Holy Quran with utmost respect and reverence, which means that one should be properly clean, should be with ablution, should sit reverentially facing the Qibla and then read the Holy Quran.

 

2.    To read slowly in a low voice and as far as possible to contemplate and reflect on the meanings.  There should be no haste……..

 

3.    If the one reading the Holy Quran can’t actually cry, then at least they should make their hearts cry i.e. while reading the Holy Quran, one should keep in mind the greatness and majesty of Allah Most High.

 

4.    Fulfill the right of each verse of the Holy Quran.  When the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) would read a verse in which the punishment of the grave is mentioned, He would seek Allah’s protection.  When He would read a verse in which the mercy of Allah is mentioned, He would make a supplication and so on.  While starting to read the Holy Quran, “A’oodhubillahi……….” and “Bismillahir Rahmaan…..” should be recited and after finishing the recitation, “Allahumma Aanis …………..” which is there at the end of every copy of the Holy Quran.  If one reaches a prostration verse (Aayaat-e-Sajdah), then with all the conditions and pre-requisites of Salaat, one should stand go into prostration with “Allahu Akbar” and then again stand back.  This kind of prostration should be done at the time of recitation itself.  This is like Salaat.  If it is done later, it comes under making up lost Salaat (Qaza).

 

5.    If one is alone, if there is no chance of disturbing anyone else engaged in remembrance of Allah, no chance of ostentation, then one may recite the Holy Quran in a loud voice as well.  So that the strength of the reciter is increased, he/she feels the pleasure of recitation, sleep is driven away and the heedless are awakened.  Otherwise, the Holy Quran should be recited in a soft voice.  For those who are not reciting from memory, it is better to look into the Holy Quran as well.  They should carefully see the letters of the Holy Quran so that their sight is illuminated.

 

6.    As far as possible, one should recite the Holy Quran in a beautiful voice and the heart should remain in communion with the Lord Almighty.  The more beautiful the recitation of the Holy Quran is, the more it will affect the heart.  However, it shouldn’t be like singing, etc.

 

        Thus, when Hadhrat Dawood (May peace be upon him) would recite the Psalms in his beautiful voice, all genies, human beings, animals, birds, etc would come to him and listen with attention and even go into ecstasy.

[Excerpted from Mawaaiz-e-Hasanah, Vol. 2]

 
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