Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Words of Peace from the Land of Peace

Eid Mubarak to you all from the Masjid al-Haram
Words of Peace from the Land of Peace
Dr. Mozammel Haque
Makkah al-Mukarramah: I wish all of you a happy Eid Mubarak from the Masjid-al-Haram in the Balad al-Ameen.

The Saudi Royal Court announced that Sunday has been declared as the first day of Eid-ul-Fitr, a celebration marking the end of fasting in Ramadan. The declaration was made by the Supreme Court of Saudi Arabia. Thus, the joyous Islamic festival Eid-ul-Fitr comes at the end of the month of Ramadan and it came this year 2012 on Sunday, the 19th of August, throughout most of the countries. Muslim brothers and sisters are enjoying and celebrating their Eid on the same day in Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom and other places.

It’s my pleasure to extend my Eid Mubarak and good wishes to all my Muslim brothers and sisters all over the world on the occasion of the celebration of the Eid after the conclusion of full 30 days of fasting in the blessed month of Ramadan. I pray to Almighty Allah for all the benefits and the rewards. I am in the Haram and I would like to pray to Allah the Almighty for myself and for you all, May Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala accept our fasting, our prayers, our worship and all our good deeds done in the blessed month of Ramadan.

Comfort for the Pilgrims
After a month-long fasting comes the most auspicious and happy occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr when Eid messages are sent all over the world from the leaders and heads of states of the Muslim world as well as the Muslim minority countries, especially from the Asian, European, American and the African continents.

When Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) received revelation from Allah the Almighty, at the very first day only two members from his family, one woman, his wife Khadijah and a young boy, Ali, believed him and immediately embraced the religion, Islam and now there are more than 1.6 billion Muslims throughout the world and all over the continents believed in the Oneness of God (Tawheed) and followed Islam. This year, there were 5.2 million Muslim worshippers at the Masjid al-Haram in Makkah during the last ten days and nights of Ramadan praying together for world peace and prosperity, Muslim unity and joyous life.

Though this year Ramadan was during the hottest months of the year in Saudi Arabia, July-August, the arrangement was made to keep both the Masjid al-Haram and its courtyard and the surroundings cooler. Worshippers enjoyed the coolness through the water cooler spraying cool waters.

The pilgrims felt the necessity and understood the demands of the expansion of the area of the Haramain in order to accommodate the ever increasing number of worshippers. I also personally felt how important it is to expand and develop the praying area of the Haramain with the rising numbers of the visitors. 20/25 years ago the Haramain expansion programme taken by the former King Fahd that requires now another expansion.

The present head of the Presidency of the Two Holy Mosques is Imam Abdul Rahman al-Sudais who has taken special care for the arrangement of the Haramain during this Ramadan. Lot of special Ramadan plan in place to ensure millions of worshippers and Umrah pilgrims was made for the comfort and welfare of the pilgrims; such as considering the increase in space thanks to the ongoing expansion Grand Mosque Expansion project of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah, allowing over 200,000 people to pray on the ground floor where water coolers were installed; the Mosque’s open areas were cooled by water and basements air-conditioned. There were 150 air-conditioners at the basement of the Haram. Wheelchairs were provided for free and electric ones were available to rent. Below the Muqabbarah (below the Azam area) was also air-conditioned where pilgrims who were in Itikaf spending their nights in Zikr and recitation and Ibadah.

Eid Messages from all over the continent
After the month-long fasting come the Eid-ul-Fitr and leaders and heads of states from all over the continents sent Eid Messages, the messages of peace and happiness and prosperity.

Eid Messages from the Haramain
King Abdullah, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and Crown Prince Salman bin Abdul Aziz, Deputy Premier and Minister of Defence, made a joint statement greeting Muslims all over the world on the occasion of Eid Al-Fitr. They expressed hope that the Eid will be an occasion to forget sorrows and bring hope, peace and prosperity to the entire world. The statement was read out to the media by Dr. Abdulaziz Khoja, Minister of Culture and Information of Saudi Arabia.

“It is a great occasion when there should be smiles on the faces of the young and old. It is an occasion to thank Allah for His bounties and congratulate one another with words of love and fraternity, spreading happiness and hope in people’s hearts. During these blessed days, the old is kind to the young and the rich to the poor and the universe is full of compassion and kindness,” the King and Crown Prince said in their message.

“During the last days of the sacred month of Ramadan and in the vicinity of the Holy Mosque in Makkah, where people worship Allah and glorify Him day and night, the Almighty facilitated the holding of the Islamic Solidarity Conference by Muslim leaders which was meant to protect the unity of the Ummah, ward off division and safeguard lives that are inviolable,” the leaders said in their message.

Eid Messages from the American continent
US President Barack Obama has issued a message on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr congratulating all Muslims around the world. In a statement posted on the website of the White House, the US President Obama said: “"Michelle and I extend our warmest wishes to Muslim communities in the United States and around the world as they celebrate Eid-Al-Fitr.

"For Muslims, Ramadan has been a time of fasting, prayer and spiritual renewal. These past four weeks have also been a time to serve the less fortunate - a reminder of the obligations that people of all faiths have to each other.

"In the United States, Eid-al-Fitr speaks to the truth that communities of faith, including Muslim Americans, enrich our national life, strengthen our democracy and uphold our freedoms, including the freedom of religion.

"That is why the we stand with people of all faiths, in the United States and around the world, in protecting and advancing this universal human right.

"On behalf of the American people, we congratulate Muslim Americans and Muslims around the world on this joyous day. Eid Mubarak."

Eid Messages from the European continent
British Prime Minister David Cameron issued an Eid Message on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr wishing the Muslim communities all over the world a very happy and peaceful Eid. In his Eid Message, British Prime Minister said: “Eid is a time for families and friends. A time for joy and happiness. As families and friends come together in celebration, I want to recognise the immense contribution that British Muslims make to our country.”

British Prime Minister also said, “Peace and unity are the spirit of Eid and I am proud of the way Britain has demonstrated these values to the world during the Olympics. So to Muslims around the world on this very important day of celebration, I wish you all a very happy and peaceful Eid.”

Nick Clegg’s message for Eid-ul-Fitr
British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg also issued Eid Message saying, "This year, as you may have noticed, the Holy Month of Ramadan coincided with the London Olympics. The contributions of Muslims in the United Kingdom to London 2012 were striking, from medal-winning athletes like Mo Farah and Mohammad Sbihi, to the many volunteers and supporters who made the atmosphere so welcoming and friendly.”

Mr. Clegg also said, “Modern Britain, in all its glory, home to every faith, every colour, every background. Opening its arms to the rest of the world and coming together to make these Games such a success. That seems to me to have been a very fitting setting for Eid ul-Fitr -A time when Muslims celebrate unity, community, friendship.

“Those are the values liberals hold dearly - Values we should all do our utmost to defend, at all times. So I'd like to send all Muslims my very best wishes for the festival. I hope you enjoy the holiday, and I wish you all a sincere Eid saeed," said British deputy Prime Minister.

British Foreign Secretary's Eid message
British Foreign Secretary William Hague sends warmest wishes to Muslims across the world ahead of the Eid-ul-Fitr. He said, “I would like to convey my best wishes to all Muslims across the globe as you and your families gather to celebrate the festival of Eid.”

Mr. Hague also said, “British Muslims will join millions around the world in celebrating Eid at the end of this special period of reflection, contemplation and consideration of others. This year we are also celebrating the London Olympic Games which have been a great source of inspiration for so many people. I am very grateful for the important contribution of British Muslims in making the London Games such a success.”

“During this special time of reflection, my thoughts are with the victims of the terrible earthquakes in Iran. I continue to hope for peace, security and stability to be restored in Syria,” said British Foreign Secretary and added, “With these reflections, on this very important day of celebration, I send my very best and wish you Eid Mubarak.”

Eid Messages from the African continent
As soon as the authorities declared after the Maghreb prayer on Saturday evening that the Eid-ul-Fitr will be celebrated on Sunday, the 19th of August, I met some of the African dignitaries with whom I have been performing fasting, prayers, Iftars, Taraweeeh and Qiyam al-Lail behind the Imam at the Masjid al-Haram for the month of Ramadan, particularly the last ten days, I enquired about their Eid Messages for the Muslim brothers and sisters throughout the world.

I interviewed former Governor of the Sokoto State of Nigeria, Attahiru Bafarawa, who said, “First of all, I want to convey our Muslim brothers and sisters the happy Eid for the year 2012 and my appeal to all Muslim brothers and sisters all over the world to unite ourselves, cooperate and work together for the peace and stability of the world. Without our cooperation and understanding of the teachings of Islam we cannot be able to move the world forward.”

“Therefore, we Muslims, we know the importance of peace that is Islam means peace and therefore we should not just put in our mouth; rather it is better to put it into practice. That’s my appeal to all Muslims in this world.”

Eid Messages from Dr. Abdullah Omar Naseef
I had also the opportunity to interview the great Dawah worker, the scientist, the educationalist, the leading player of social welfare and interfaith dialogue, Dr. Abdullah Omar Naseef, the former President of the Jeddah-based King Abdulaziz University and the present Secretary General of the Cairo-based International Islamic Council for Dawah and Relief (IICDR). He wants to convey his Eid Message to the Muslims all over the world. Dr. Naseef said in his message: “The Ummah is still in a very miserable situation and we hope that in every Ramadan change will come through people spend their time worshipping Allah Subhanahu wa Taa’la with concentration but we don’t lose hope we should belief more to Allah the Almighty.”

“At one time He (Allah the Almighty) will give the people and they will come out from their misery and difficulties. But usually during this time of the year I advice people to keep in mind that Ramadan has gone but Allah is there and we have to be the same; i.e. we should worship Him with the same intensity and concentration as we did in Ramadan. So the number of people who will do that will increase; will be more than usual and I hope that the Ummah will face a huge new life style after Ramadan,” said Dr. Naseef and added, “This is our hope and Allah Subhanahu wa Taa’la is Great. He will grant us the guidance; sustenance, patience and also strong will to continue, Insha Allah, towards His Orders and Commandments and the Traditions of the Prophet (peace be upon him).”
Picture caption1: Worshippers are waiting for the Eid-ul-Fitr prayers at the Masjid al-Haram, Makkah, on Sunday early morning @Dr.M.Haque.

Picture caption 2: Pilgrims were performing Tawaf (circumbulation) on the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan at the Masjid al-Haram, Makkah, around midday of Friday @Dr.M.Haque
Makkah al-Mukarramah
20th of August 2012

Friday, 10 August 2012

Seek the Greatest Night of the Year in Ramadan

Seek the Greatest Night of the Year
in Ramadan
Dr. Mozammel Haque
I still remember my childhood when an old man of 70 years, Abdul Jabbar, used to come from the district of Faridpur (now in Bangladesh) took the silent alleys of our village in the night, chanting and calling, to wake up Muslims for the last meal before another day of Ramadan fasting begins. Abdul Jabbar reminds one of a character from the book The Thousands and One Nights. He is a strange person who comes out from the depth of the night to disturb the quietness by a shrill cry calling, Suhuoor…Suhoor.

Now that person is replaced in a big city like London by Muslim Community Radio (MCR) – Ramadan Radio – in East London, Kismat Radio and Islam TV Channel calling Muslims to wake up for their breakfast. In Ramadan, all Muslims who want to fast should eat before starting to fast.

The Month of Mercy, the blessed month came and is passing away very fast. Today, Wednesday, is the 20th of Ramadan. More than two-third of the blessed month has passed; still there is time to get our sins cleared, still there is time to ask for forgiveness from Allah the Almighty who is ready to forgive our sins. The remaining days and nights of the blessed month is full of Allah’s mercy and blessing. In this part of the month, specially during the last 10 days and nights, a night which is the greatest night of the year, the Lailatul Qadr. During these ten days and nights, Muslims spend in the Mosque for I’tikaf.

I’tikaf means seclusion and staying in the Mosque with the intention of becoming closer to Allah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) would perform I’tikaf for last 10 days every Ramadan. In the year that he died, he performed it for twenty days. (Related by Al-Bukhari, Abu Dawud, and Ibn-Majah). The next Friday on 10 of August (22 Ramadan) or after next Friday 17 of August (30 Ramadan, if not Eid day) will be the Jumatul-Widah, the last Friday of the Blessed Month of Ramadan.

As the month of blessings and mercy is coming to the end, similarly the recitation of the complete Qur’an is also coming to the Khatam which might be on the 29th night of Ramadan. The last ten nights are very important nights. Ayesha (may Allah be pleased with her) said that the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to exert himself in night prayer especially during the last 10 days of Ramadan.

Lailatul Qadr (The Night of Decree)
Lailatul-Qadr is the greatest night of the year like the Day of Arafah is the greatest day of the year. It is a night about which Allah revealed a full Surah, Suratul-Qadr (97:1-5) and the 3rd to the 6th verses of the Surat ad-Dukhan (44:3-6). Allah the Almighty said in the Qur’an, “Indeed We have revealed it (Qur’an) in the Night of Decree. And what will explain to you what the Night of Decree is? The Night of Decree is better than a thousand months. Therein descends the Angels and the Spirit (Jibreel) by Allah’s permission, on every errand: (they say) “Peace” (continuously) till the rise of morning!” (97:1-5). A person who misses Lailatul Qadr is really a deprived person!

Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The blessed month has come to you. Allah has made fasting during it obligatory upon you. During it the gates to Paradise are opened and the gates of Hellfire are locked, and the devils are chained. There is a night (during this month) which is better than a thousand months. Whoever is deprived of its good is really deprived (of something great). (Ahmad, an-Nisai and al-Bayhaqi).

Aishah said, “Allah’s Messenger used to practice I’tikaf in the last ten nights and say: ‘Seek out Lailatul-Qadr in the (odd nights) of the last ten days of Ramadan.” (Bukhari and Muslim).

The word Zakat in Arabic means purification. The giving of Zakat (obligatory charity) is the third pillar of Islam. There are two types of Zakat: Zakat-ul-Fitr (charity of Eid-ul-Fitr, given to the poor before Eid prayer) and Zakat Al-Maal (purifying charity, paid on one’s wealth).

It is to be noted that Zakat-ul-Fitr was declared by the Prophet (peace be upon him) as a prerequisite for the acceptance of fasting. But when and whom to pay Zakat-ul-Fitr? First of all, who has to pay? Each and every Muslim, regardless of his social status, is required to give a certain amount of charity usually in the form of food grains, barley, raisin etc. called Zakat-ul-Fitr at the end of Ramadan and before the Eid-ul-Fitr so that every member of the Muslim community, especially the poor, have something to eat on the day of Eid. It is meant to cement the relationship between the members of the Muslim society, to alleviate the pain of the poor, to cultivate the sense of brotherhood and solidarity in the hearts of the Muslims, etc., said Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi.

Dr. Qaradawi also said, “If a person dies before Maghrib on the last day of Ramadan, Zakat-ul-Fitr would not be obligatory upon him even if he fasted all the other days of the month. Conversely, if a child is born after Maghrib on the last day of Ramadan, i.e. the first night of Shawwal, it would be obligatory to pay Zakat: Zakat-ul-Fitr on his or her behalf. This view is unanimously agreed upon by Muslim scholars.” The head of the household must pay for every member of the family, even for the newborn. The Muslim is supposed to pay Zakat-ul-Fitr (i.e., Zakah of breaking the fast) in the country where he or she spends the first night of the month of Shawwal.

So far as the Zakat-ul-Maal is concerned, it is also obligatory for a Muslim, who possesses the minimum wealth on which Zakat is applicable, to give out Zakat. In his Friday sermon at the Grand Mosque in Makkah al-Mukarramah, Imam and Khateeb Sheikh Dr. Saleh Bin Mohammad Aal-Talib, urged Muslims to be God-Conscious and give charity to the poor and the needy. He said Zakat removes miserliness and cleans the heart from cruelty.

Allah has stressed on payment of Zakat, which appears in the Holy Qur’an more than 30 times. There are many verses of the Holy Qur’an and sayings of the Prophet (peace be upon him) that urge Muslim to give charity for the sake of Allah. Sheikh Aal-Talib said charity is an act that attracts Allah’s mercy. He said giving charity secretly extinguishes God’s anger and it is a blessing for the person’s wealth. A person who does not give in charity will be punished by removal of the blessing (barakah) from his wealth.

Zakat-ul-Fitr is associated with the Eid and is meant to create happiness in such a way that includes the poor and the needy. That is why the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Make them (i.e., the poor) rich on this day (i.e. the day of Eid)”.

Charity in Ramadan
About charity and spending from the wealth in the Way of Allah or for the Cause of Allah, Allah the Almighty said in the Qur’an, “The likeness of those who spend their wealth in the Way of Allah, is as the likeness of a grain (of corn); it grows seven ears, and each ear has a hundred grains. Allah gives manifold increase to whom He wills. And Allah is Al-Sufficient for His creatures’ needs, All-Knower.” (Al-Qur’an, 2:261).

Allah also said, “Those who spend their wealth in the Cause of Allah, and do not follow up their gifts with reminders of their generosity or with injury, their reward is with their Lord. On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.” (Al-Qur’an: 2: 262)

Ramadan is also the month of charity. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “...Whoever draws nearer (to Allah) by performing any of the (optional) good deeds in (this month), shall receive the same reward as performing an obligatory deed at any other time; and whoever performs an obligatory deed in (this month), shall receive the reward of performing seventy obligations at any other time. It is the month of patience, and the reward of patience is Paradise. It is the month of charity, and a month in which a believer’s sustenance is increased. Whoever gives food to a fasting person to break his fast shall have his sins forgiven, and he will be saved from the Hell-Fire, and he shall have the same reward as the fasting person, without his reward being diminished at all.” (Reported by Ibn Khuzaymah)

Spend more time with the Qur’an. Read the Qur’an every day. Try to finish at least one time the whole Qur’an during this month by your own personal reading. Pray on time and observe all the prayers. Do not ignore the Tarawih. Make more extra and voluntary prayers. Do as much worship as you can. Do more dhikr (remembering Allah) and du’a (supplication) for yourself and for others. Repent and seek forgiveness for yourself and for others as much as you can. This is the best time for devotion and seeking Allah’s forgiveness. Seek the Night of Qadr by special devotion during the last 10 nights of this month.

The month of blessing and forgiveness is passing away very quickly. Do not miss the remaining last ten days and nights. Let us clear our sins. Let us seek the Night of Qadr.

Makkah al-Mukarramah
08 August 2012

Friday, 3 August 2012

Ramadan The Month of the Qur'an

Ramadan: The Month of the Qur’an

Dr. Mozammel Haque
The Noble Qur’an was revealed in the month of Ramadan (Al-Qur’an, 97:1-3.). The Qur’an was sent down in the month of Ramadan on the Night of Power Lailatul Qadr. (Al-Qur’an, 91:1-3.). It is the month of Ramadan that Allah has honoured by revealing the Qur’an. Because of this strong relation between the Qur’an and the month of Ramadan, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) used to read the Qur’an to Archangel Jibreel every Ramadan. I think this is the right place to discuss the purpose and objective of the revelation of the Qur’an, its importance, the campaigns against it and the do’s and don’ts of the Qur’an.

First of all, Allah the Most High, created mankind and gave him the gift of expression. For the guidance of mankind Allah sent Prophets (peace be upon them all) to every single community. In the words of the Qur’an, "There has been no community to which God’s messengers have not come" and "Muslims should make no distinctions between them." So it is the duty of a Muslim to honour all the prophets equally.

The Qur’an represents the culmination of all other earlier Revealed Books. The Qur’an is the last of the Revealed Books. The Qur’an is the first religious book in the world, which requires the belief in other revelations, a part of its Faith. This Sacred Book was revealed to the last Messenger, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in the month of Ramadan. Allah Himself said in the Qur’an: “Ramadan is the (month) in which was sent down the Qur’an, as a guide to Mankind, also clear (Signs) for guidance and judgment (between right and wrong).” (2:185). Allah the Most High has especially mentioned the exact date and month of the revelation: “We have indeed revealed This (Message) in the Night of Power.” (97:1) So the purpose of the revelation of the Qur’an was for guidance of Mankind.

The Qur’an is emphatic in proclaiming that Islam is the religion of Jesus, Moses, Abraham and the Prophets Jesus and Moses were not Jews but Muslims. "Surely those who believe (in that which is revealed to Muhammad Peace be upon him) and those who are Jews, and the Christians, and the Sabaeans – whoever believes in Allah, and the Last Day and does good, surely their reward is with their Lord, and there is no fear for them nor shall they grieve." (2:62). "A Guidance for mankind and clear proofs for the guidance and judgement (between right and wrong)." This is the most important characteristic of the Qur’an, the Book that Allah has revealed in the month of Ramadan. It is guidance for mankind. It is clear proof, clear proof of guidance and of judgement.

Before the revelation of the Qur’an, it was preserved and guarded from corruption in the "Mother of the Book". Allah Himself said: "Nay this is a Glorious Qur’an (inscribed) in a Tablet Preserved" (85:21-22). When Allah wanted to give this Trust to someone, the Heavens, the Earth, and the Mountains, i.e. other creatures of Allah, besides man, refused to undertake this Trust or responsibility. They preferred to submit their will entirely to Allah’s Will, which is All-Wise and Perfect, and which would give them far more happiness than a faculty of choice, with their imperfect knowledge. Allah says in the Qur’an: "We did indeed offer the Trust to the Heavens and the Earth and the Mountains; but they refused to undertake it, being afraid thereof: but man undertook it: He was indeed unjust and foolish." (33-72).

So it is the human beings who took the responsibility of the Trust without realising its importance. This Sacred Book was revealed to the last Messenger Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in the month of Ramadan. The Qur’an is the revealed book of God which has been in existence for more than four hundred years and the Word of Allah is available in its original form. There has not been an iota of change in this unique historic record. Its originality and authenticity has been guaranteed by no other than Allah the Almighty who challenges in the Qur’an itself.

Allah said, "This Qur’an is not such as can be produced by other than Allah: on the contrary it is a confirmation of (revelation) that went before it, and a fuller explanation of the Book - wherein there is no doubt – from the Lord of the Worlds." (10:37). In another verse of the Qur’an Allah challenges, "Or do they say, "He forged it?" Say: "Bring then a Surah like unto it; and call (to your aid) anyone who can, beside Allah if it be you speak the truth!" (10:38). "Or they may say, "He forged it." Say, "Bring you then ten Suras forged, like unto it, and call (to your aid) whomsoever you can, other than Allah! – if you speak the truth!" (11:13).

Allah said in the Qur’an, "And if you are in doubt as to what We have revealed from time to time to Our servant then produce a Sura like thereunto, and call your witness and helpers (if there are any) besides Allah, if you are truthful." (2:23) Allah places many verses before you. Can you produce one like it?

The world is challenged to produce a Book like it and has not produced one. It is the only Revealed Book whose text stands pure and uncorrupted today. Allah said, "Say: "if the whole of mankind and jinns were to gather together to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they backed up each other with help and support." (17:88)

Since the revelation of the Qur’an, the adversaries of Islam have been trying to distort it. Firstly, they said, it is not revelation, it is written by Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Then they started attacking its authenticity and originality. Recently, attempts have been made to denigrate Muslims by burning copies of the Muslim Holy Book, The Qur’an.

Pastor Jones and members of his Dove Outreach Church in Gainesville, Florida, had intended to throw200 copies of the Islamic holy book on a bonfire on 11 September 2010, reported in the Daily Mail on 11 September 2010. Jones burned a Qur’an on the grounds of his church in Florida in March last year, 2011. On 24 April 2012, Al-Arabiya News reported that US Pastor Terry Jones, a self-professed scourge of Islam, has threatened to ‘burn Qur’ans and images of Prophet Mohammad’ if a Christian religious leader in Iran is not released from jail. The Guardian London reported on 23 February 2012 the burning of copies of the Qur’an by American soldiers in Afghanistan on Monday, the 20th of February, 2012. In spite of their conspiracy, the Qur’an has been preserved in its original form.

The Qur’an is the only Book in the world which has remained more than fourteen centuries pure without any interpolation or change and will remain so till the Last Day as Allah has guaranteed its purity. (15:9).

The purity, preservation and propagation of the Qur’an were maintained by two methods: memorization of Qur’an in Qur’anic schools and the recitation of the complete Qur’an in Ramadan. In the month of Ramadan every year the Noble Prophet (peace be upon him) was asked by Archangel Jibreel to recite the whole of it twice. It was a Muzakira between the two. Abu Huraira reported that Jibreel used to repeat the recitation of the Qur’an with the Prophet once a year, but he repeated it twice with him in the year the Prophet (peace be upon him) passed away. The Qur’an was recited in the Taraweeh for the first time during the era of Caliph Omar.

So far as the memorization of the Qur’an in Qur’anic schools is concerned, many Huffaz and Islamic scholars have been killed in different parts of the world at different times. But still there is no dearth of Islamic scholars who can recite the complete Qur’an from memory. Severe campaigns have been launched against the Qur’anic schools, which teach the study, recitation and memorization of the Qur’an. The Qur’an is the main Book of the Muslims; it is the duty of the Muslims to learn Qur’an, which contains their code of life and ethical values whose benefits have been experienced by mankind throughout the ages.

I have already mentioned the objective and importance of the Qur’an and how its originality and purity have been maintained. Our Prophet (pbuh) and his Companions dedicated their days and nights for worship. Their lives revolved completely around the Book of Allah, the Qur’an, reciting it in and out of Salah.

The Qur’an is the basis of the religion of Islam, and on the preservation and propagation of the Qur’an depends the very existence of this Faith. Hence the virtue of learning and teaching the Qur’an is self-evident and does not need further elucidation. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The best amongst you is he who learns the Qur’an and teaches it.” (Bukhari, Daud and Tirmidhi).

A great Islamic scholar wrote in his book entitled Toward Understanding of the Qur’an: “The present arrangement of the Qur'an is not the work of later generations, but was made by the Prophet under God's direction. Whenever a surah was revealed, the Prophet summoned his scribes, to whom he carefully dictated its contents, and instructed them where to place it in relation to the other surahs. The Prophet followed the same order of surahs and verses when reciting during ritual Prayer as on other occasions, and his Companions followed the same practice in memorizing the Qur'an. It is therefore a historical fact that the collection of the Qur'an came to an end on the very day that its revelation ceased. The One who was responsible for its revelation was also the One who fixed its arrangement. The one whose heart was the receptacle of the Qur'an was also respon¬sible for arranging its sequence. This was far too important and too delicate a matter for anyone else to dare to become involved in.”

“Not even the most skeptical person has any reason to doubt that the Qur'an as we know it today is identical with the Qur'an which Muhammad (peace be on him) set before the world; this is an unquestionable, objective, historical fact, and there is nothing in human history on which the evidence is so overwhelmingly strong and conclusive. To doubt the authenticity of the Qur'an is like doubting the existence of the Roman Empire, the Mughals of India, or Napoleon! To doubt historical facts like these is a sign of stark ignorance, not a mark of erudition and scholarships,” he added.