Monday, 21 May 2007

A Brief Tazkirah On Respecting The Qur'an

Throughout the centuries since the Holy Qur'an was revealed to the Prophet of Islam till today, we as Muslims believe that the Qur'an is still intact and pure from any changes. Even though the enemies of Islam have tried to change it or distort its meanings, through the Mercy of Allah we still have a pure Qur'an. The Qur'an is the greatest miracle, which was given to the Prophet Muhammad SAW. Even amongst the miracles of previous Prophets AS this miracle has a special distinction, in that each miracle appeared and disappeared with that particular Prophet AS. The Qur'an on the other hand is a miracle, which will last till the end of time.

The Qur'an challenges those unbelievers who deny or hesitate in accepting the Qur'an as the speech of Allah, to produce a chapter like it:

"And if you are in doubt concerning that which We have sent down to Our slave, then produce a Surah (chapter) or the like there of and call your witnesses besides Allah, if you are truthful. But if you do it not, and you can never do it; then fear the Fire whose fuel is men and stones, prepared for the Disbelievers." (Surah Al Baqarah: Ayat 23-24)

This verse and many alike it in the Qur'an show that the Qur'an is the Book of Allah and was not written by an illiterate person i.e. the Prophet Muhammad SAW or by any human being.

The author of the book "The World's Religions" - Ninian Smart has wrote about the Qur'an:

"Of course, recitations or written copies of the Qur'an are all created; but as divine speech what lies behind and within the Qur'an is eternal. All this gives it a much deeper meaning and much higher status than that of the Bible."

The Qur'an's scientific accuracy has reverted many scientists from around the world into Islam.

Professor Tajasen, the former Head of the Department of Anatomy and Embryology at the College of Medicine, University of Chang-mi, Thailand said:

" Some of the signs which were revealed 1,400 years ago have recently been explained by modern science."

The professor continued in his speech, saying that the time had come to accept Islam.

Professor Tajasen accepted the signs and embraced Islam. Not only a couple of scientists have embraced Islam, but many people around the world recognise and acknowledge - the Qur'an being free from any kind of mistake.

The Prophet Muhammad SAW has said:

"The Qur'an will either be evidence in your favour or evidence against you."

As commentary, what is meant here is that if a person acts upon the Commandments in the Qur'an by following its guidance, it will benefit him/her. If he/she does not follow it's guidance then it will be against him/her.

The Companions of the Prophet Muhammad SAW used to learn one chapter at a time and would not learn another chapter until they had implemented the commandments of that particular chapter into their lives. Unfortunately, today we hear and read the Qur'an, but not once do we try to understand it, never mind acting upon it. Nevertheless to read the Qur'an without understanding its meaning is also a way of getting closer to Allah. Such is the Mercy of Allah SWT.

Once, Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal RA saw Allah in his dream.

Imam Ahmad RA enquired:

"O my Lord! What brings your servants closer to you?"

Allah SWT replied:

"That which has come from me" - i.e. referring to the Holy Qur'an.

Imam Ahmad RA then asked:

"My Lord, is this through understanding the Qur'an or without?"

Allah SWT responded in the dream:

"With or without understanding it. Both are means of becoming close."

From this narration, we may understand that by just reading the Qur'an without understanding it, we can get closer to Allah.

But is this truly enough? Does this mean that any person can open the Qur'an, then read it - with or without wudhu, indulge in unnecessary interruptions whilst reading to talk and swear, and then once finished, the can the Qur'an be placed anywhere you want - on the floor? behind somebody's back? wherever? is this okay?

With this regard, we should take heed of one Hadith from Rasulullah SAW:

" The Qur'an will either be in your favour or evidence against you."

Thus, if we were to act upon the Qur'an, it will be in our favour, but is it possible to act upon something that holds no respect or any status in our hearts?

Just look around us, in our own homes, where Qur'ans are nicely and neatly stacked up, collecting dust. Qur’ans in the same room where people watch television and listen to music. Qur'ans lying in mosques and Madrasahs which have been stacked up anyhow, pages and verses of the Qur'an which have fallen out of the Qur'an, lying on the floor, scrunched up in some corner, is this what respect the Words of Allah deserve?

Imam Bukhari RA was once invited to somebody’s orchard. When it was time for Zuhur Solat, he led those that were present in Solat and then began to perform Nawafil (optional) Solat. After finishing his prayer he lifted his shirt and said to one of his companions:

"Please have a look, is there anything in my shirt?"

He found that his back was red and swollen, as a wasp had stung him sixteen to seventeen times.

One of those present asked him:

"Why didn't you come out Solat the first time it stung you?"

Imam Bukhari RA replied:

"I was reciting a Surah and I was enjoying it so much that I didn't want to cut it short."

This is the respect our great predecessors had for the Qur'an.

Many of us in this day and age are so pathetic that we could not even sit properly when reciting the Qur'an. We talk while the Qur'an is opened in front of us; we ignorantly sit behind someone's back when reciting the Qur'an. It's not that we do these on purpose, but due to our neglectfulness, the awe and respect of the Qur'an has emptied from our hearts.

It has come to us that many people from Sudan do not have Qur'ans at all. The local teacher teaches the students, who are becoming hafiz - by writing one verse of the Holy Qur'an in sand, and then makes them learn it . This is the 21st Century and there are Muslims around the world who don't have copies of the Holy Qur'an, but gives it full respect. Better than us.

Let us take heed.

No comments: