By Faaizah MK
The Noble Qur’an, as most of us know, was the final book sent by Allah to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ for guiding all of humanity until the Last Day. The Qur’an essentially calls its readers to acknowledge the truth, that there is no God but Allah, and it demonstrates how man should lead his life in accordance with this truth; it discusses man’s relationship with his Creator, his relationship with others and his relationship with himself. Thus, it covers all the aspects required to live life in a manner that pleases Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) .
Yet, one finds that most people today use the Qur’an for anything and everything except as a means of guidance. The recitation of the Qur’an has become a mindless ritual, and the main reason for this is that it is not accompanied by understanding. A man recites the Qur’an during the course of his entire life, till his death, but when he dies, he dies not having known the meaning of a single verse from the Qur’an.
No doubt the recitation of the Qur’an is an important form of worship and one that has profuse rewards, but it is not the primary purpose the Qur’an was sent down for. Allah revealed the Qur’an so that we may be guided to the straight path, and how can we be guided when we don’t even know what the Qur’an is saying?
Allah tell us in Surah A’le Imran, verse 138:
This [Qur’an] is a clear statement to [all] the people and a guidance and instruction for those conscious of Allah.
(Al- Qur’an, 3:138)
Despite such an explicit proclamation from Allah, we have abandoned the Qur’an and become indifferent to its meaning. If the Qur’an were to be likened to a treasure chest, then it is obvious that the chest will benefit a person only when he opens it, takes out its treasures and then uses it for betterment. By Allah, the Qur’an is a treasure trove full of reminders that is more valuable than any jewel, any precious stone, and any of the riches this world has to offer – because it contains the mention of Allah. Then why do we turn away from this magnanimous blessing?
It is as Allah has said in Surah Muhammad, verse 24:
Then do they not reflect upon the Qur’an, or are there locks upon [their] hearts?
(Al- Qur’an, 47:24)
Our hearts have become locked because of our neglect, and our lives have filled with darkness, because a life without Qur’an is a life without light.
How can we remove these shackles from our hearts? Repent to Allah, increase in good deeds, and most importantly, attempt to understand the Qur’an. Read the translation, ponder upon its meaning and resolve to implement every verse. Better yet, study Tafseer with a teacher. You will be amazed at the profoundness and intricacy of the Qur’an. This Book is so powerful and compelling that a few verses from it are enough to make a person see the light and change his life completely.
Though in my case, it took a little more than a few verses to make my stubborn heart finally relent – but when it did, my life did change completely. Earlier, I used to be very heedless and unconcerned about the commands of my Lord. My only goal was to enjoy, have fun and “live life to the fullest” – even if it was at the expense of my religion. I got into constant fights with my parents, disobeyed them in most matters, mistreated my sister, neglected my studies, and all in all, just did as I pleased
Although I was chasing my own desires, I wasn’t in the least satisfied. I always wanted more – and the more I got, the unhappier I became. There was this constant ache I felt within, like something significant was missing in my life. Like I had a void inside and my soul was calling out to me to fill it.
And one day, I did fill the void. Or rather, Allah filled it. Qur’an classes for girls were being held at the local mosque twice a week, and my mother urged me to join it. I gave in and did as she asked. We started with Surah Baqarah and it was the first time I was learning the Qur’an in such detail. The truth be told, I’d joined the class assuming I wasn’t going to learn anything significant, only the same things I’d been taught since childhood – that Allah is One, that Muhammad ﷺ is his last Prophet and that we shouldn’t disobey our parents.
I wasn’t prepared for what greeted me instead. I was dumbfounded during the first few classes. I was amazed at the beauty of this book and how powerful every verse was. Was this the same Qur’an I’d been heedlessly reciting my entire life? It felt like every ayah was meant for me and I was blown away. Connecting to the Qur’an reminded me of my purpose in life, gave me a newfound clarity and changed my entire outlook on life.
It’s been two years since, and I still can’t get enough of this Book. No matter what kind of situation or trial you’re going through, you’ll always find a relevant verse in the Qur’an. Whenever you feel overwhelmed by this dunya, you will have the Qur’an to fall back to. Only the words of your Creator can guide you to the light at the end of the tunnel.
I could go and on about the depth and beauty of the Qur’an, but you will know what I’m talking about only when you pick it up yourself. So go ahead, take the Qur’an down from your shelf and let it enter your heart instead.