How to read the Holy Quran?

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته


Allah (جل جلاله، سبحانه و تعالى، عزّ وجلّ) Says:

ولو نزلنا عليك كتابا في قرطاس فلمسوه بأيديهم لقال الذين كفروا إن هذا إلا سحر مبين

[O Messenger!] Had We sent down to you a book inscribed on parchment, and had they even touched it with their own hands, the unbelievers would still have said: ‘This is nothing but plain magic.’ (Surat Al-‘An`ām 6:7)

وقال الذين كفروا لولا نزل عليه القرآن جملة واحدة كذلك لنثبت به فؤادك ورتلناه ترتيلا

And those who disbelieve say, “Why was the Qur’an not revealed to him all at once?” Thus [it is] that We may strengthen thereby your heart. And We have spaced it distinctly. (Surat Al-Furqān 25:32)

لو أنزلنا هذا القرآن على جبل لرأيته خاشعا متصدعا من خشية الله وتلك الأمثال نضربها للناس لعلهم يتفكرون

If We had sent down this Qur’an upon a mountain, you would have seen it humbled and coming apart from fear of Allah . And these examples We present to the people that perhaps they will give thought. (Surat Al-Ĥashr 59:21)

فاقرءوا ما تيسر من القرآن

So, recite you of the Qur’an as much as may be easy for you. (Surat Al-Muzzammil 73:20)

كتاب أنزل إليك فلا يكن في صدرك حرج منه لتنذر به وذكرى للمؤمنين

This is a Book revealed to you. Let there be no impediment in your heart about it. (It has been revealed to you) that you may thereby warn [the unbelievers], that it may be a reminder to the believers. (Surat Al-‘A`rāf 7:2)

ولقد يسرنا القرآن للذكر فهل من مدكر

We have made it easy to learn lessons from the Quran: will anyone take heed? (Surat Al-Qamar 54:17)

كتاب أنزلناه إليك مبارك ليدبروا آياته وليتذكر أولو الألباب

[This is] a blessed Book which We have revealed to you, [O Prophet], that they might reflect upon its verses and that those of understanding would be reminded. (Surat Şād 38:29)

لا تحرك به لسانك لتعجل به

Do not move your tongue with it [The Qur’an] to hasten on with it. (Surat Al-Qiyāmah 75:16)

ورتل القرآن ترتيلا

And recite the Qur’an slowly and distinctly. (Surat Al-Muzzammil 73:4)

أفلا يتدبرون القرآن أم على قلوب أقفالها

Then do they not reflect upon the Qur’an, or are there locks upon [their] hearts? (Surat Muĥammad 47:24)

وقرآنا فرقناه لتقرأه على الناس على مكث ونزلناه تنزيلا

And [it is] a Qur’an which We have separated [by intervals] that you might recite it to the people over a prolonged period. And We have sent it down progressively. (Surat Al-‘Isrā’ 17:106)

سنقرئك فلا تنسى

By degrees shall We teach thee to declare (the Message), so thou shalt not forget. (Surat (Al-A’ala 87:6)

Abu Hurairah (رضي الله عنه) reported: I heard the Prophet Muhammad  (صلى الله عليه وسلم)  saying, “Allah does not listen so attentively to anything as He listens to the recitation of the Qur’an by a Prophet who recites well with a melodious and audible voice.” (Muslim 793b)

Narrated `Abdullah bin `Amr (رضي الله عنه) : Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said to me, “Recite the whole Qur’an in one month’s time.” I said, “But I have power (to do more than that).” Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “Then finish the recitation of the Qur’an in seven days, and do not finish it in less than this period.” (Sahih al-Bukhari 5054)

Abdullah ibn Amr (رضي الله عنه) asked the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم): In how many days should I complete the recitation of the whole Qur’an, Messenger of Allah? He replied: In one month. He said: I am more energetic to complete it in a period less than this. He kept on repeating these words and lessening the period until he said: Complete its recitation in seven days. He again said: I am more energetic to complete it in a period less than this. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: He who finishes the recitation of the Qur’an in less than three days does not understand it (Sunan Abi Dawud 1390).

Ummi Salamah (رضي الله عنها) reports: “Rasulullah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) recited every aayah separately. He recited ﴾ الحمد لله رب العالمين ﴿ and paused, then recited ﴾ الرحمن الرحيم ﴿ and paused. Then paused after reciting ﴾ مالك يوم الدين ﴿ ” (Shama’il Muhammadiyah Book 43, Hadith 299)

Ummi Salamah (رضي الله عنها) said about the recital of Rasulullah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) : “He recited every word separately and clearly”. (Shama’il Muhammadiyah Book 43, Hadith 297)

Narrated Muhammad bin Ka’b Al-Qurazi (رضي الله عنه) : “I heard ‘Abdullah bin Mas’ud (رضي الله عنه) saying: ‘The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: “[Whoever recites a letter] from Allah’s Book, then he receives the reward from it, and the reward of ten the like of it. I do not say that ﴾ الم ﴿ is a letter, but ﴾ ا ﴿ is a letter, ﴾ ل ﴿ is a letter and ﴾ م ﴿ is a letter.” (Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 42, Hadith 2910)

Umm-ul-Mumineen Aishah (رضي الله عنها) said, “The Prophet spent the night [in prayer] with [a single verse] Ayah from the Qur’an.” (Tirmidhi 448)

The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “He who does not recite the Qur’an in a pleasant tone is not of us.”  (Riyad as-Salihin Book 9, Hadith 17)

The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) has said: “For every thing there is an embellishment (or a decoration), and the embellishment of the Qur’an is a good voice.” (Biharul Anwar)

Narrated Al-Bara’ ibn Azib (رضي الله عنه): The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: Beautify the Qur’an with your voices. (Sunan Abi Dawud 1468)

Abu Hurayrah (رضي الله عنه) narrated that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: “The superiority of the words of Allah over all other words is like the superiority of Allah over all of His creation.” (al-Laalkaa’i 557)

Narrated Al-Muttalib bin ‘Abullah bin Hantab from Anas bin Malik (رضي الله عنهما) that the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: “The rewards for my Ummah were displayed before me, even (the reward for) the dust that a man comes out of the Masjid with. The sins of my Ummah were displayed before me, and I have not seen a sin worse than a Surah or Ayah of the Qur’an which a man learned and then forgot.” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 42, Hadith 2916)

The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: When one of you recites “By the fig and the olive” (Surah 95) and comes to its end

 ﴾ أليس الله بأحكم الحاكمين ﴿

“Is not Allah the best judge?” (95:8),

he should say:

بلى وأنا على ذلك من الشاهدين

“Certainly, and I am one of those who testify to that.”

When one recites “I swear by the Day of Resurrection” (Surah 75) and comes to

 ﴾ أليس ذلك بقادر على أن يحيي الموتى ﴿

“Is not that one able to raise the dead to life? (75:40),

he should say:



And when one recites “By those that are sent” (Surah 77), and comes to

﴾ فبأي حديث بعده يؤمنون ﴿

“Then in what message after that will they believe? ” (77:50),

he should say:

آمنا بالله

“We believe in Allah.”

(Sunan Abi Dawud 887)

In describing the Prophet’s recitation of the Qur’an, one of the companions said, “He [the Prophet] would extend his voice appropriately and clearly [every letter would be pronounced properly]”.  (Abu Dawud 1465)

Qataadah (رضي الله عنه) reports: “I inquired from Anas (رضي الله عنه): ‘How was the recital of Rasulullah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) ?’ He replied: ‘He recited (The words of madd) with a madd (elongation)'”. (Shama’il Muhammadiyah Book 43, Hadith 298)

Ibn `Abbas (رضي الله عنه) said, “Preach to the people once a week, and if you won’t, then preach them twice, but if you want to preach more, then let it be three times (a week only), and do not make the people fed-up with this Qur’an. If you come to some people who are engaged in a talk, don’t start interrupting their talk by preaching, lest you should cause them to be bored. You should rather keep quiet, and if they ask you, then preach to them at the time when they are eager to hear what you say. And avoid the use of rhymed prose in invocation for I noticed that Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and his companions always avoided it.” (Sahih al-Bukhari 6337)

It was narrated that Nafi’ bin ‘Abdul-Harith (رضي الله عنه) met ‘Umar bin Khattab (رضي الله عنه) in ‘Usfan, when ‘Umar had appointed him as his governer in Makkah. ‘Umar asked: “Whom have you appointed as your deputy over the people of the valley?” He said: “I have appointed Ibn Abza (رضي الله عنه) over them.” ‘Umar said: “Who is Ibn Abza?” Nafi’ said: “One of our freed slaves.” ‘Umar said: “Have you appointed a freed slave over them?” Nafi’ said: “He has great knowledge of the Book of Allah, is well versed in the rules of inheritance (Fara’id) and is a (good) judge.” ‘Umar said: “Did not your prophet say: ‘Allah raises some people (in status) because of this book and brings others low because of it?'” (Sahih Muslim 817 a)

Abdullah ibn Masood (رضي الله عنه), the Companion said, “It was difficult for us to memorize the words of the Qur’an but easy for us to act by them. After us will be people for whom it is easy to memorise the Qur’an, but hard to act by it.”

Abu Nadrah (رضي الله عنه) related, “We used to learn from Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri (رضي الله عنه) five verses in the morning, and five in the evening, for he told us that Jibreel (عليه السلام) used to bring (on average) five verses at a time.”

It is reported that Ibn ‘Umar (رضي الله عنه) said, “We were the beginning [the heads] of this Ummah, and perhaps a man from the best of the Companions of Allah’s Messenger  (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and the most righteous amongst them could maintain only one chapter of the Qur’an or thereabouts. For the Qur’an was weighty upon them, and they were given knowledge of it or action based on it. But the last of this Ummah will find the Qur’an light [and easy] – the child and the non-Arab will recite it, without possessing any knowledge about it.” (Al-Harawî, Dhamm Al-Kalâm wa Ahlihî Vol. 5 p144).

How did the Sahabah study the Qur’an? If we take the example of Abdullah ibn Umar (رضي الله عنه), he says: ‘It took me 14 years to finish memorizing Surah al‐Baqarah.’ Fourteen years! I mean we could memorize Qur’an in a year, how come it took him 14 years to memorize just Surah al‐Baqarah? The scholars explain the length of time it took by saying: They also sought to learn the Fiqh, Tafseer, Ahkaam, and reports of the verses and there is also transmitted on authority of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) the dislike for quickly memorizing the Qur’an.

One of the Tabi’een said, ‘I met with some of the Sahabah of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and they told me that the way they would study Qur’an is that they would take ten ayaat and they would study these ten ayaat, they would study the iman, the ilm, and the halaal and haraam in the ayaat, then memorize the ayaat and then they’d move onto the next ten ayaath. They would never move onto the next ten ayaat until they applied it. Not until it became alive and a second nature to them. I was told this by many of the Sahabah, not just one.’ 

Hasan al-Basri (رحمه الله) said, “There was not revealed a [single] Ayat from the Qur’an except that it has a Dhahir [an apparent] and Batin [inner] and every letter has a value [measure] – and for every value is an ending.” (Baghawi, Sharh us Sunnah  1/214)

Imam Muhammad al‐Ghazali (رحمه الله) said, ‘I memorized (the whole) Qur’an when I was ten years old’, here he was talking about a problem we have in the modern method of education in the teaching of Qur’an, he said ‘……as a kid I memorized the whole book but I didn’t understand anything. Because of the mode I was in (of just reciting without learning and understanding), when I grew up and was attempting to learn and understand the Book of Allah, I was finding it very hard because I was programmed to just repeat the verses’. He says ‘It took me a lot of effort, struggle, and striving until I was able to break that cycle and start thinking and contemplating over the ayaat of Almighty Allah. So, we have to go through the struggle in order to understand the Book of Allah.

Shaykh ‘Abd ar-Rahman as-S’adi (رحمه الله) said: ﴾ على مكث ﴿  in 17:106 means by intervals at an easy pace, so that they might ponder it and think about its meanings, and derive knowledge from it (Tafsir as- S’adi).

Gradual change is the most effective and natural way of reform. This method is acceptable for many issues, like improving a lifestyle, giving up harmful habits and many other changes. In this blog you can download Qur’an translations and tafsir (Surah/Juz-wise) as individual PDF files in multiple styles (such as Tajwid, Word for word, Colored fonts etc). You can also read Islamic articles on different topics or ask questions.

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