Take a good proportion out of your day simply to just read and reflect, even if it is just on one verse – only then will you benefit from its pearls and gain a spiritual connection with your Lord.
It’s that time of year again where the Qur’an is taken off the dusty bookshelf and opened in order for the beautiful words of Allah (SWT) to be recited. The Qur’an itself is a miracle. With each letter recited, Allah (SWT) promises reward; do we ever wonder about the beauty behind these words? Why do they possess such a high reward and how can we make the most of it this Ramadhan?
This is the Book about which there is no doubt, a guidance for those conscious of Allah (Al-Baqarah:2)
Often we think the Qu’ran is a book of dos, don’ts and historical references about the people that have come before us. But if we were to follow the Qur’an every step of the way in all aspects of life, it would no doubt plant a seed that will one day flourish into a garden of perpetual bliss. In order for us to begin to understand the divine words, we should take a look at our beloved Prophet (SAW). He took the words of the message, not only to be recited, but also to be practiced, in his actions, speech and direct worship to Allah (SWT). In fact, everything that the Prophet (SAW) did was in accordance with the Qu’ran – this is why he (SAW) was a messenger of God.
The magnificent beauty
Before even opening the Qu’ran, we must understand the masterpiece at hand. It is not any old ‘life’ book written by a random psychologist, but a manual, a guide, from the Creator of the heavens and the earth – Allah (SWT) – and what better guide to have than from the one who created us? Just as a mobile phone manufacturer puts together a ‘how to use’ manual so the customer not only knows how to use it, but also how to make the most out of it, the glorious Qur’an has been sent down in order to guide His creation to be the best people possible, and actually understand what it means to be a true Muslim. Once we accept this, we break down the barrier that is wedged between our hearts and what lies beneath the embellished front cover.
And I did not create the jinn and mankind except to worship Me (Adh-Dhariyat:56)
To understand the Qu’ran, people think we must learn Arabic; this is encouraged and will no doubt allow a deeper understanding, which a translation will not be able to provide. The words of Allah (SWT) are incredibly deep in their meaning, to embrace every single word, we must avoid trying to race through its 114 chapters. This year as Ramadhan falls in the summer holidays, it’s a great opportunity to just get stuck in! Take a good proportion out of your day simply to just read and reflect, even if it is just on one verse – only then will you benefit from its pearls and gain a spiritual connection with your Lord. Quality is always better than quantity.
Go out and live it
Once we have reflected and taken some lessons, it’s important that we put it into practice. Based on our willingness to sacrifice for God, and if we live in a state of taqwa (God-consciousness), our daily routine can become an act of worship, walking the walk of the Qur’an itself. This can be something really simple: Allah (SWT) mentions in the Qur’an on many occasions the status of parents, so help your mum prepare for iftar in the evening. Even though she may not look it, she is actually as hungry and tired as you are and she would no doubt appreciate the extra pair of hands.
Don’t spend your days sleeping!
The fourth pillar of Islam is charity; find out where you can become a volunteer during the holidays; there will be lots of fundraising activities going on over Ramadhan. Or perhaps even start a project with your friends in your local area where you can get creative, have fun and gain some reward. This will also be great in building on your work experience; it’s a win-win opportunity! Build on your knowledge by attending Islamic classes. The Prophet (SAW) said “Allah makes the way to Jannah easy for him who treads the path in search of knowledge.” (Muslim).
Ramadhan is a great time to develop your iman when even the atmosphere is spiritually boosting; use the time to cut out all the useless pastimes and replace it with that which is beneficial. When Ramadhan is over, you won’t want to go back.
And We send down of the Qur’an that which is healing and mercy for the believers, but it does not increase the wrongdoers except in loss. (Al-’Isra:82)
What better time to start this quest into the Qur’an and recharge our spiritual batteries than in the month of mercy? All we need to do is to lift the Qur’an from the bookshelf, open it, and with a little spark of love, determination and patience, start to understand exactly why Allah (SWT) has put us on this earth. Let’s do this!
Aaminah Taheem is 21 years old and is a student at the University of Manchester studying Psychology. She writes for sisters in the hope of inspiring and supporting young Muslims on their spiritual paths from her own experiences.