Assalamu alaikum (May peace be upon you all)
As human beings, relationships are a center point in our life; they provide us love, care, facilitate reproduction, help us develop and enrich our opportunities. It is even said they extend our survival. No doubt, we long for and worry about the relationships we have and even don’t have. But how do you feel about your relationship with the Qur’an?
Let’s look at eight reflection points to reignite the most rewarding, satisfying and enriching relationship in your life: your bond with the Book of Allah.
1. Long to present your Qur’an to Your Lord
When we meet a loved one after a long time, we often present them with gifts and we like to show them our achievements; the job we have, the children’s studies, the home we own etc. Do you often think about what you’ll come back to Allah, the Most High, with on the day you’ll meet Him?
The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said: You will not come back to Allah with anything better than that which came from Him (i.e. the Qur’ān). [Al-Mustadrak lil-Hakim]
Ask Allah, Al Haseeb, the Reckoner, to guide you to daily interact with the Qur’an, to come to Him with memorised, understood and acted upon Ayaat of His Book and for Him to accept your efforts with the Qur’an.
2. Make the Qur’an lead you
Money, possessions, work, relationships with others; what is it that drives your daily life choices? Not many would like to admit they’re being led by money.
However, by following them -often subconsciously- we let things or people lead us, and ironically most of these drives are not benefiting us at all in the Hereafter.
The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: “The Qur’an is an intercessor, and its intercession is accepted and its plea is believed. Whoever makes it lead him, it leads him to Paradise and whomsoever places it behind him, (the result will be that) he is dragged to the Fire.” [Shu’ab al-Iman, Bayhaqi]
Ask Allah, the Most High, to make the Qur’an your leader and forgive and protect you from placing your relationship with Allah’s Book on the bottom of your list.
3. Beg to be of the People of Allah
Every human being has a need to be belong to someone or something; a family, tribe, a culture, community or group. This sense of belonging is innate; and the Prophet ﷺ beautifully explained: “Allah has His own people among mankind.” They said, “O Messenger of Allah, who are they?” He said, “They are the people of the Qur’ān, the people of Allah and those who are closest to Him.” [Ibn Majah] And Allah, the Most High, Himself instructed us: “…Be people of the Lord because you have taught the Book and because of what you have studied.” [Qur’an, 3:79]
Beg Allah, Al Qareeb, the Near One, to make you of His people, to make you and your loved ones the people of the Qur’an and be close to Him.
4. Don’t forget about quality over quantity
Can you in all honesty say to yourself that you daily spend at least five minutes on learning the meaning and explanation (Tafseer) of an Ayah in the Qur’an? Many Muslims don’t even know the meaning of Surah Al-Fatihah!
Imam Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy on him, said: “If the people knew the sweetness, and benefits in pondering over the Qur’an when reading it, they would have kept themselves busy with nothing else but reading Qur’an.
For reading and pondering over one verse is better than a Khatmah (completion of the whole Qur’an) without contemplation nor understanding. It’s also more beneficial to the heart, attains Imaan and makes one taste the sweetness of the Qur’an. [Miftah Dar al-Saʿadah]
Ask Allah, Al Qadeer, the Capable, for the will to study and reflect on the meanings of the Ayaat. And then for the Tawfeeq (ability) to truly experience the sweetness of His Book and have this transform your worship, your character and your relationships.
5. Intend to cure your heart
When our body gets sick, we rush to the doctor, or even to the Internet searching our symptoms and after we found out our illness, we look for the right medicines or cure without delay. Are we this worried about our hearts?
Ibn Taymiyyah said in Diseases of the Hearts and their Cures: “The Quran is a cure for that which is within the heart, and for the one who has the sickness of doubt and desire in his heart, for it contains clear proofs that distinguish the truth from falsehood, and removes the sickness of false doubts to leave certain knowledge, correct perception and understanding, such that the heart sees things in accordance to their reality. It contains wisdom, goodly exhortations both encouraging good and deterring from evil, and stories which contain lessons that necessarily lead to the correction of the heart by making the heart desire what is good for it and detest what is harmful to it. Hence the heart is left desiring that which will guide it, hating that which will deviate it after it used to desire that which would deviate it and hate that which would guide it”.
Beg Allah, Ash-Shafee, the One who cures, to help you recognize your spiritual illnesses and cure your heart through a strong desire of His Book.
6. Ask for help to understand the letter of the King
Many of us say we want to understand the Qur’an, but don’t realize this takes an action plan just like any other work or household task requires planning. An idea is to commit to daily spend ten minutes learning Qur’anic vocabulary (see Understand Al-Quran Academy courses here https://understandquran.com ) and on the explanation of the Qur’an, for example by Ibn Kathir, may Allah have mercy on him.
Be motivated by this beautiful comparison: “The metaphor of those who recite the Qur’an without knowing its Tafseer (explanation) is that of some people to whom a letter comes from their king at night when they have no lamp. They are alarmed, not knowing what the letter contains. The metaphor of the one who knows the Tafseer is that of a man who brings them a lamp so that they can read what the letter says.” [Tafsir Al-Qurtubi]
Supplicate to Allah, Al Malik, the King, to help you daily spend time on understanding the language and meaning of His Book and live by its message to the best of your ability.
7. Give Da’wah using the Qur’an
Starting with the will, asking for Tawfeeq, then reciting, learning its language and its meanings, another part of your Qur’anic action plan is to call others to this Book of wonders. Abdullah bin Amr (RA) reported that the Prophet ﷺ said: “Convey (from) me even if it is one Ayah.” [Al-Bukhari] Most of all know of this narration (Hadith), but do we really act upon it in our daily lives?
Allah, the Most High, Himself instructs us: “…So remind with the Qur’an whoever fears My warning.” [Qur’an, 50:45]
Ask Allah, Al Haadi, the Guide, to help you call to and remind others of His Book, so you’ll be guided to His Pleasure.
8. Feel the beauty of the Banquet
Finally, be motivated to (re)ignite your relationship with Allah’s Book with this mind-blowing description.
Abdullah ibn Masood (RA) reported that the Prophet ﷺ said: “This Qur’an is the Banquet of Allah, so take as much as you can from His banquet. Indeed, this Qur’an is the Rope of Allah, and it is the clear Light and (is the effective) Healing. It is a protection for the one who clings to it and a rescue for the one who follows it. It is not crooked and so puts things straight. Its wonders do not cease. It does not wear out with repetition. So, recite it, for Allah will reward you for the recitation of every letter…” [Al-Mustadrak lil-Hakim]
Explaining the phrase ‘banquet of Allah’, Imam Qurtubi mentions in his Tafseer: “The Qur’an is likened to something Allah has prepared for people. They have good and benefits in it. Then He has invited them to it.”
O Allah, help us recite, understand and act upon Your Book, make the Qur’an our leader and a cure for our hearts and guide us in conveying its message, Aameen.
Praying you will benefit,
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Khawlah b. Yahya – United Kingdom
Khawlah b. Yahya founded SISTERS’ PROJECT in 2008, a United Kingdom based women’s support organization, the creative community lead in an art gallery and is a writer for different Islamic organizations and academies. She authored the renown How to Live by the Names of Allah Series, published by the Understand Qur’an Academy, as well as the internationally shared Revive a Sunnah Series. She focuses most of her work on how to translate classic Islamic Knowledge to daily life action. She recently released Personal Lessons from the Qur’an, in which daily life action points are based on Qur’anic Ayaat in a way that’s never seen before. You can purchase the E-book on: understandquran.com/product/personal-lessons-from-the-quran/