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Friday, December 26, 2008

RECITATION OF THE QUR’AN AL-KARIM

Imam-i Birgivi 'rahmatullahi 'alaih' says in his book Atfal-ul muslimin:

A hadith-i sharif [1], which is written in the explanation of Shir’at-ul islam, states, “The most valuable worship to be done by my Umma [2] is to read the Qur’an al-karim by looking at the Book.” And it is written in Kitab-ut tibyan, “The best recitation of the Qur’an al-karim is the one done in salat (prayer).” [A hadith, which exists in the ninety-third letter of the third volume of Maktubat by Hadrat [3] Muhammad Ma’thum 'rahmatullahi 'alaih', declares, “Recitation of the Qur’an done in salat is more useful than that which is done outside of salat.” This hadith-i sharif is written in Hazinat-ul esrar together with its documentaries]. Hadrat Ali 'radiy-Allahu 'anh' stated, “A hundred thawabs (rewards) are given for each letter of the recitation of the Qur’an done when standing in the salat. When it is recited (or read) with an ablution outside the salat twenty-five thawabs are given for each letter. When it is recited without an ablution ten thawabs are given. And fewer thawabs are given if it is recited when walking or doing some work.” Reading one ayat and thinking of its meaning produces much more thawab than reading the whole Qur’an and thinking about something else.

It is a very ugly bid’at [4] to read the Qur’an melodiously, which has become customary among the hafizes recently; it is very sinful. You must read the Qur’an with a mellifluous and sorrowful voice and with fear of Allah. It is written in the Fatwa of Bezzaziyya, “A person who reads the Qur’an al-karim melodiously like singing will not be given any thawab.” It is wajib to say the A’udhu when beginning to read (or recite) a sura [5] or an ayat [6]. And when beginning to read the Fatiha it is wajib also to say the Basmala. It is sunna [7] to say the Basmala when beginning other ayats.

A hadith-i sharif declares, “When you read the Qur’an al-karim observing the rules of tajwid, you will be given twenty thawabs for each letter. You will be given ten thawabs if you do not follow the rules of tajwid.” It is one of the gravest sins to forget an ayat after having memorized it. A hadith declares, “Nurs (radiance) rise up to the Arsh from a house where the Qur’an al-karim is read.” Abu Hureyra 'radiy-Allahu 'anh' said, “Baraka and goodness come to a house where the Qur’an al-karim is read; angels come together there; devils flee from there.” It produces plenty of thawab to listen to the Qur’an al-karim which is being read. A hadith-i sharif declares, “An ayat one listens to will be a nur (radiance) for one on the Day of Rising.”

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GLOSSARY
[1] hadith (sharif): a saying of the Prophet (‘alaihi ‘s-salam).
[2] Ummat: (pl. of umma) the community, body of believers, of a prophet.
[3] Hadrat: title of respect used before the names of great people like and Islamic scholars.
[4] bid’at: (pl. bida’) heresy; false, disliked belief or practice that did not exist in the four sources of Islam but which has been introduced later as an Islamic belief or ‘ibada in expectation of thawab (blessings) ; heresy.
[5] Sura(t): a Qur’anic chapter [a chapter of the Qur’an].
[6] Ayat al-karima: a verse of al-Qur’an al-karim.
[7] sunnat: act, thing that was, though not commanded by Allahu ta’ala, done and liked by the Prophet (‘alaihi ‘s-salam) as an ‘ibada.

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