by Bela Khan
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) said, The one who was devoted to the the Qur’an will be told on the Day of Resurrection: ‘Recite and ascend (in ranks) as you used to recite when you were in the world. Your rank will be at the last Ayah you recite.’ [Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi]
Last year, when my daughter was born (two months before Ramadan), the first gift my husband and I gave her was a Digital Quran. I used to play it by her side in a very low volume so that only she could hear it. I wanted to familiarize her with the words of Allah from the beginning so that her bond with Allah (swt) would become strong and unshakable.
By the mercy of Allah, that Digital Quran ended up being a source of immense kher for both mother and daughter. I ended up memorizing 1/4th of the last Juzz and a portion of Surah Yaseen in the last Ramadan. Some people might say this isn’t a very impressive quantity. True, but the most interesting part is that this memorization didn’t take any great effort from my side. I did it almost effortlessly.
Why the Digital Quran?
I know there are many gadgets available out there; I could have played it on my mobile, TV, or even the laptop. If you want to do it, it’s absolutely okay. But I chose Digital Quran for two reasons.
- No distraction! Subhan Allah, when you have a Digital Quran, there will be nothing to distract you. No instant message will land on it. No “ping” to notify you of the latest post on Facebook. This is a superb gadget, as it won’t remind you of an email that you have to answer or “Angry Birds” or anything else. It will just remind you of the word of Allah (swt) as you hear and look at it.
- Less danger. I bought it for my baby in the first place, so I had to make sure that I wasn’t putting a gadget by her side that would emit harmful radiations. Digital Quran is definitely safer, if not the safest gadget.
Let’s Get Started!
Everything starts with a plan. What do you plan to memorize? This depends on your zeal and enthusiasm as well as what you know about your ability to memorize. Remember, your goals should be realistic, achievable, and trackable. I had two goals for last Ramadan: the last 20 Surahs and Surah Yaseen. I felt this was good enough to challenge me in a healthy yet realistic way.
Write it Down
I’m a huge fan of writing down my goals. I don’t do everything in my head. It’s a sacred place for the love of Allah (swt). So, I love brain dumping. What I did was just that – I took a piece of paper, jotted down all my goals and pasted it right in front of my bed. This was the first thing I saw as I woke up in the morning (healthy reminder) and the last thing I did before sleeping was filling it in. I divided the above-mentioned portion into 30 parts (for 30 days of Ramadan) and wrote it down with the dates. This helped me live one day at a time, kept me on track, and gave me a sense of achievement.
How to Do it?
1). Use this secret technique.
Have you ever noticed that the songs you heard a long time ago, if you hear them again, are sometimes still fresh in your mind? You didn’t put any effort into memorizing those songs, did you? Did you write down the lyrics and read them aloud 10 times? No! You just heard them over and over again until they got imprinted in your neurons. The trick is the same for effortlessly memorizing the Quran. Every day morning I’d set the Digital Quran on repeat for the targeted portion and start my chores (cleaning, taking care of baby, etc.) while keeping my attention on the surah being played.
2). Create an image.
When you’re done with your chores and some portion of the surah has entered your head, open the Mus’haf (your paper copy of the Quran). Recite it from the Mus’haf just to create the image in your mind. For the purpose of memorization, it’s extremely important to always memorize from the same Mus’haf. This helps to create a visual memory of the surah in your mind. I believe, every Muslim must have his or her own personal Mus’haf the way we have our personal cell phones and laptops. Close the Mus’haf and try to recall the first two ayahs (or more if you have learned it already). I’m sure at least two ayahs are ready! Move on to the next step.
3). Recite these ayahs in the salah.
The relationship we have with Quran is reflected in salah. Reciting new ayahs in salah will help you to:
- i. Strengthen your relationship with Allah (swt), and
- ii. Maintain khushu’ in salah
You’ll not only enjoy your salah by reciting new verses, you’ll also start to embed these ayahs deep in your memory. In this way, you get the opportunity to revise your daily memorization several times a day without disturbing your normal routine. Read the translation of these ayahs and think about them as you go about your day. This will make the journey all the more meaningful inshaAllah.
4). Repetition is key.
I’d keep repeating the same activity the entire day. Play the Digital Quran and go on with my activities (preparing iftar, etc.), keep my ears on the recitation and then open the mus’haf and create the image in my mind. And finally, recite the same ayahs in Salah!
Alhamdulillah, for people who can’t dedicate large chunks of time to it, memorization in this way is not only easy but also a means of getting closer to Allah (swt). It’s a very simple process to gradually learn the words of Allah (swt). Just remember to make realistic and achievable goals, write them down, and follow the steps mentioned above. Keep on steadily going further along the road in Ramadan and even after that. You’ll be well on your way to learning the Holy Quran, in shaa Allah! Happy learning, and Ramadan mubarak!