The transformative power of the Quran
The month of the Quran is Ramadan.
Though the Quran is not exclusive to Ramadan.
However we do increase our recitation during this month.
Here are some of my reflections on The effect of the Quran on us and why we should make the effort to discover it more.
Allah Almighty says:
الَّذينَ ءامَنوا وَتَطمَئِنُّ قُلوبُهُم بِذِكرِ اللَّهِ ۗ أَلا بِذِكرِ اللَّهِ تَطمَئِنُّ القُلوبُ
Those who believe, and whose hearts find comfort in the remembrance of God. Surely, it is in the remembrance of God that hearts find comfort. (13:28)
Do our hearts find tranquillity when we recite Quran? If they don’t, then we have to fix our hearts to attain tranquility.
In another ayah in Surah Qaf, Allah Almighty says:
إِنَّ فى ذٰلِكَ لَذِكرىٰ لِمَن كانَ لَهُ قَلبٌ أَو أَلقَى السَّمعَ وَهُوَ شَهيدٌ.سورة ق.
In that is a reminder for whoever possesses a heart, or cares to listen and witness attentively. (50:37)
How to fix the heart
This ayah shows us that the way to achieve a tranquil heart, a heart with khushoo’ is by listening attentively. We have to reflect on the meaning. So it is through sama’ (listening attentively) through the ears of the heart, that the heart can feel tranquility, be engaged and become soft.
Listen, understand and reflect on the Quran to get the sweetness, the barakah and mercy of the revelation.
Allah Almighty mentioned the effect of listening to the Quran:
أُولٰئِكَ الَّذينَ أَنعَمَ اللَّهُ عَلَيهِم مِنَ النَّبِيّۦنَ مِن ذُرِّيَّةِ ءادَمَ وَمِمَّن حَمَلنا مَعَ نوحٍ وَمِن ذُرِّيَّةِ إِبرٰهيمَ وَإِسرٰءيلَ وَمِمَّن هَدَينا وَاجتَبَينا ۚ إِذا تُتلىٰ عَلَيهِم ءايٰتُ الرَّحمٰنِ خَرّوا سُجَّدًا وَبُكِيًّا ۩
These are some of the prophets God has blessed, from the descendants of Adam, and from those We carried with Noah, and from the descendants of Abraham and Israel, and from those We guided and selected. Whenever the revelations of the Most Gracious are recited to them, they would fall down, prostrating and weeping. (19:58)
This is the sign of believers. They feel the urge to be more connected to Allah. They feel humility.
This is reflected in one of my favourite Hadith.
عن ابن مسعود، رضي الله عنه ، قال: قال لي النبي، صلى الله عليه وسلم، “اقرأ علي القرآن” قلت: يا رسول الله أقرأ عليك وعليك أنزل ؟! قال:”إنى أحب أن أسمعه من غيري” فقرأت عليه سورة النساء، حتى جئت إلى هذه الآية (فكيف إذا جئنا من كل أمة بشهيد وجئنا بك على هؤلاء شهيداً} ((النساء:41)) قال: ”حسبك الآن” فالتفت إليه، فإذا عيناه تذرفان. ((متفق عليه)) .
Ibn Mas’ud (may Allah be pleased with him) reported, the Prophet (ﷺ) said to me: ‘Recite the Qur’an to me’. I said, ‘O Messenger of Allah! Shall I recite the Qur’an to you, when it has been revealed to you?’ He (ﷺ) replied, ‘I love to hear it recited by others’. So I recited to him a portion from Surat An-Nisa’. When I reached the Ayah:
‘How (will it be) then, when We bring from each nation a witness and We bring you (O Muhammad ﷺ) as a witness against these people?’ (4:41)
He (ﷺ) said, ‘Enough for now’. When I looked at him I saw his eyes were shedding tears.
(Bukhari and Muslim)
The effect of the Quran thus impacts the heart, body and mind as well as actions.
Beautify your recitation
We know that Ibn Mas’ud had a lovely voice and his recitation was beautiful.
عَنِ الْبَرَاءِ بْنِ عَازِبٍ، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم “ زَيِّنُوا الْقُرْآنَ بِأَصْوَاتِكُمْ ” . رواه أبو داود
On another occasion, narrated by Al-Bara’ ibn Azib, the Prophet (ﷺ) said:
Beautify the Qur’an with your voices. (Abu Dawoud)
When you recite the words of Allah Almighty with a beautiful recitation it penetrates the heart more. The Prophet (peace be on him) had a beautiful voice and this projected the divine message beyond the ears. There were many companions who had beautiful voices and when we beautify our recitation, it increases our khushoo’ and connectivity with the Quran.
The effect on non believers
Among the reflections on the Quran, Allah mentioned a beautiful ayah:
وَإِذا سَمِعوا ما أُنزِلَ إِلَى الرَّسولِ تَرىٰ أَعيُنَهُم تَفيضُ مِنَ الدَّمعِ مِمّا عَرَفوا مِنَ الحَقِّ ۖ يَقولونَ رَبَّنا ءامَنّا فَاكتُبنا مَعَ الشّٰهِدينَ
And when they hear what was revealed to the Messenger, you see their eyes overflowing with tears, as they recognize the truth in it. They say, ‘Our Lord, we have believed, so count us among the witnesses.’ (5:83)
Here we see that even those who are not Muslim can see the light of the previous books shining through it and they recognise the truth.
Even non-believers will believe it when they hear it.
When we recite we need to recognise that these are the words of Allah Almighty addressing every single one of us, coming into our lives and addressing our needs and our issues. It envelopes us with its mercy and blessings.
Connect with the Quran
Now we need Allah’s mercy and support even more than before.
Let’s look after our heart more and prepare ourselves to recite with a pure and open heart.
To honour and glorify Allah’s words we need to improve our tajweed so we can recite it properly as it was revealed. The more sincerity we have, the more we benefit.
Some people saying that they can’t understand the Arabic but you don’t need to be an Arab to understand the Quran. If you are, it’s a bonus. But if you are not you can still understand more than 80% with a good translation, this will help you connect with it.
Divine words still have blessings in them, so even if you don’t understand them but you have sincerity and attentiveness, it penetrates the heart.
The Prophet (peace be on him) would recite to his companions. They would listen and he would also ask them to recite to him. And this is what we should be doing. This is the right time.
The sequence for connectivity
Listen and recite the Quran more in Ramadan. And then reflect on what you read. And the final step is implementing it.
We need this sequence. Step by step.
May Allah enable us this Ramadan to have more connection, attentiveness, tranquility and application of the Quran in our lives. Ameen.
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