In the name of Allah, the most beneficial, the most merciful:
When we wish to test the physical health of our bodies, blood samples are taken, body parts are checked, and so on. When we want to test the pressure of our tires a gauge is inserted, giving us an accurate reading. Even the non-physical can be tested— internet speed, for example, or even emotions.
The Ultimate Test
But the ultimate test is the test of the heart. Forget the pumping organ we can’t live without— I’m talking about the soul, which has infinitely more power over us. The vital mass of tissue on the left sides of our chests is inconsequential when compared with the soul that determines our eternity. And what stands as the most valuable assessment of our inner soul? The Quran.
Who Can Truly Grasp the Quran?
I often wonder how some people are unable to read the Quran without tears, while others seem capable of “reading” the most glorious book while texting, checking sports highlights on TV, and having music blasting in the next room. You don’t think it’s possible? Neither did I.
Among the other prophets, the miracles of the final Prophet (pbuh) might be seen as comparatively limited. The character of the man— the most glorious creation himself— and the transmitted words made into a book are his miracles but only for those who are guided. Surah Yaseen says, “The Qur’an was sent to remind the one who is alive”, or whose heart is alive. Allah also says: “The Quran is a guidance for the one who gives heart”. Such is the marvel of the most holy text.
What is the Variable?
Ibn al Qayyim (rah), an extremely influential and pious Muslim scholar, has stated that the variable causing such variation in reaction to the Qur’an is the heart. Our hearts are cold and hollow, unable to understand the beauty of the words we read. We are content with merely “parrot-reading”, or, even worse, understanding the words without feeling that which is in our inner being stir even remotely.
What is the Answer?
Spiritually, we are zombies, the living dead, unable to remove the veil that separates us from the greatest sign of the Lord to which we shall return. But for every condition there is a cure, for every ailment, a resolution. And Allah, infinitely merciful and understanding, has provided us with the resolution. Ibn al Qayyim (rah) has said that for one seeking to remove the screen between his or her self and the creator, there are three steps: 1). Tawbah, 2). Tawbah, and 3). Tawbah.
Repent . . .
Seek forgiveness from the Exalted, and cease and desist from sin. Sin has created the crust around our souls that prevents the penetration of the magnificent words, and we must repent if we are to achieve results.
Before this, though, there is another condition. We must truly want a bond with Allah. The Quran is a gift— the most superb of all physical gifts. Why would it be given to the unwilling or to those whose hearts are spoiled? Every single one of us has a shell encasing his or her heart, and it is necessary that we devote ourselves to breaking down the barrier that stands between us and the Lord.
. . . and Be Forgiven
On the authority of Abu Dhar, Allah’s Messenger conveyed that Allah said: “If you draw closer to Me by a hand span, I will draw closer to you by forearm’s length. If you draw closer to Me by a forearm’s length, I will draw closer to you by an arm’s length. And if you come to Me walking, I will come to you running.”
Can any of us say that we could do without He who created us?
Ibraheem Lunat is currently a student in Marietta, GA, USA.