24 July, 2013

1434 Ramadan Mubarak 14-Ramadan and the Qur’an

Ramadan and the Qur’an

Author: By Dr. Muhammad Kamal Al-Shareef

Qur’anic revelations revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) were started in Ramadan. God says: “It was in the month of Ramadan that the Qur’an was revealed: a guidance for mankind and a self-evident proof of that guidance

But Ramadan is also a season for night worship, which includes reciting the Qur’an in prayer with attention and devotion. God commands His Messenger: “O you enwrapped one! Keep awake (in prayer) at night, all but a small part, or one half of it, or make it a little less than that, or add to it, and recite the Qur’an calmly and distinctly, with your mind attuned to its meaning.”(73: 1-4)

When a believer recites the Qur’an he or she experiences a sense of comfort and reassurance: “God lets go astray anyone who wills (to go astray) and guides to Himself those who turn to Him; those who have faith and whose hearts find comfort in the remembrance of God. It is indeed in the remembrance of God that people’s hearts find comfort.” (13: 28) In fact when anyone of us reads the Qur’an we feel that all our worries have been removed. Any feeling of distress that we might have been experiencing is dissipated and all depression is cleared as we go on reciting God’s words: “Mankind, there has come to you an admonition from your Lord, a cure for all that may be in your hearts, and guidance and mercy for the believers.” (10: 57)

This is indeed true. We find in the Qur’an a cure for all that we may experience of worry and distress, and we find in it solace and comfort.

This is certainly the case when believers read the Qur’an, because they find in it an honor bestowed on man by the Creator of heaven and Earth who has placed man in charge of this Earth. From the Qur’an man learns that everything has been made subservient to man, God’s honored creation. Moreover, the Qur’an is a message from God, the Master of the universe, addressed to us collectively and individually, delivered through the angel Gabriel to Muhammad (peace be upon him) who, in turn, conveyed it to us clearly and completely.

The Qur’an is, thus, a message addressing every one of us in person. Both Gabriel and Muhammad are bearers of this message embodied in the Divine book which explains what God has to say to every one of us in person. This is indeed a great honor.

The Almighty creator has sent us a message in the form of a book recording His words and guidance to us all. How is it, then, that some of us may entertain thoughts of their own insignificance, or that they are no more than particles floating aimlessly in the huge, limitless universe, when God has given us such a detailed message, providing clear guidance?

Muhammad Iqbal, the great Muslim poet, used to read the Qur’an in the same way as many Muslims do. His father said to him once: “Read the Qur’an as if it is being revealed to you personally.” Needless to say, his father was not encouraging him to believe that he was a prophet; he was only reminding him that the words he was reciting were a message to him personally from God, the Lord of all the universe. It is true that the same message is addressed by God to all mankind and all the jinn, but it is a personal message to everyone of them. Ever since that day, the effect of the Qur’an on Iqbal became totally different.

When a person you dearly love sends you a letter, you read it time and again without being bored. Can we ever be bored with reading a message from God, our Lord creator whom we love very dearly?

After the Prophet had passed away, Abu Bakr, his friend and successor as the ruler of the Muslim state, said to Umar ibn Al-Khattab: “Let us go and visit Umm Ayman, the Prophet’s nurse when he was young.” When they were with her, she was in tears. Thinking that she was crying because of the Prophet’s death, they said: “What are you crying for?

What God has for His Messenger is certainly better for him.” Her answer showed that her thoughts went in a different direction: “I am certainly not crying for lack of knowledge that what God’s Messenger receives from God is better for him. I am crying because revelations from on high have ceased.” They both were in tears when they heard this. (Related by Muslim, Ahmad and Al-Baihaqi)

Our Lord, we pray to You to make the Qur’an a source of happiness for our minds, and a light in our hearts that expels all our worry and distress. You are certainly the One who answers sincere prayers.


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