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Choosing the Proper Time for Reciting the Qur'aan

5th October 2015

The person should choose a time for reciting the Qur'aan during which he would be most inclined to receiving the blessings and guidance of the Qur'aan. This should be a time in which his mind is free of distractions. From the Qur'aan and different ahaadeeth it seems clear that two of the best times for reciting the Qur'aan are the last third of the night and Fajr time. Khurram Murad رحمه الله writes, 

"Yet there are some specific times which are more desirable as they are recommended by the Qur'aan and the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم; those moments are more rewarding and fruitful... The most excellent time to read is at night... Reading the Qur'aan during the night-prayers enables your heart to remain with your reading and stregnthens your will in surrendering yourself to Allaah's guidance سبحانه و تعالى and fulfilling the mission He has entrusted you... The great need and immense benefits of reading the Qur'aan in prayer during the night however remain. Hence you should assign at least some time, however little, even a few minutes with some regular frequency, however long, say weekly or even monthly, for this purpose." [1] 

Related to this concept is the suggestion that the person free his mind from all other preoccupations. If there is something on somebody's mind while he is reading the Qur'aan and he is easily able to take care of that matter, he should tend to it first and then return to read the Qur'aan. If, for example, someone needs to relieve himself, make an important phone call or something similar to that which he will always have on his mind while reciting the Qur'aan, he should tend to those simple things first and then continue his recital. [2] 

However, it is difficult to determine how often and how much one should read the Qur'aan on a regular basis. [3] 

It is clear from the sunnah of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم and the actions of the Companions رضي الله عنهم that they would not let any day pass without reading at least some portion of the Qur'aan. Imaam an-Nawawi records that some of the Companions رضي الله عنهم would regularly complete the entire Qur'aan every two months, while others would do so monthly; still some completed it once a week or every six days and so on. [4] [5] 

How much and how often one reads the Qur'aan, therefore, will depend upon individual capabilities and limitations that differ from person to person. The important aspect is to want to read the Qur'aan as often as possible, to understand it properly and to apply it to the best of one's ability. 

In addition, one should not try to read the entire Qur'aan too quickly. The purpose of reading the Qur'aan is to understand it and benefit from its guidance. When one reads it too quickly, it is not possible for him to comprehend or ponder over its meaning. This was pointed out by the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم when he said, "The one who reads the Qur'aan in less than three days will not comprehend it." [6] 

In fact, even when reading individual soorahs (suwar), the person's goal should not simply be the completion of the soorah. Ibn Mas'ood once said, "[Do not read it] in the manner that one throws out dates or in the quick manner that one reads poetry. Instead, stop at every one of its magnificent points and allow your heart to be moved by it. None of you should be thinking just about reaching the end of the soorah." [7] [8] 


[1] Way to the Quran, pp. 61-62 

[2] This is analogous to the case of the person who needs to relieve himself before the prayer begins but goes ahead and performs the prayer first. This action is considered makrooh (disliked). 

[3] According to Imaam al-Maqdisi رحمه الله, if a person has a copy of the Qur'aan in his house, he must read at least a few verses from it daily in order not to treat it as something mahjoor (abandoned, avoided). [Mukhtasar Minhaaj al-Qaasideen, p.53] 

It has been narrated of a number of Companions رضي الله عنهم, including 'Uthmaan Ibn 'Affaan and 'Umar Ibn al-Khattaab, that they would dislike to have a day go by in which they did not look at and read from their copy of the Qur'aan. [Ithaafus-Saadatul-Muttaqeen bi Sharh Ihyaa' 'Uloomud-Deen, volume 5, pp. 70-71] 

[4] At-Tibyaan fee Adab Hamlatil-Qur'aan, p. 30 

[5] See also: Daily 1 (or more) finishing of the Qur'aan by the Salaf - Is it Haraam to complete the Qur'aan in less than 3 days? - 

[6] Recorded by Imaam Abo Daawood رحمه الله, Imaam at-Tirmidhi رحمه الله and Imaam al-Baihaqi رحمه الله. According to Shaykh al-Albaani رحمه الله, it is saheeh. [Saheeh al-Jaami', vol. 2, p. 1279] 

It has been narrated from many of the early Muslims, including the Companion 'Uthmaan Ibn 'Affaan, that they would recite the entire Qur'aan in much less than three days, perhaps nightly or even in a shorter period. The majority of the scholars, as Imaam az-Zarkashi رحمه الله stated, are of the opinion that this depends on the person's own ability to read, understand and comprehend. One may read it in less than three days if he has the ability to understand it in a shorter period. [Al-Burhaan fee 'Uloom al-Qur'aan, vol. 1, p. 471] 

Imaam al-'Iraaqi رحمه الله notes that the hadeeth above does not state that if someone reads the Qur'aan in less than three days that he is doing something forbidden; it simply states that he will not be able to understand it. [Quoted by Imaam az-Zabeedi رحمه الله in Ithaafus-Saadatul-Muttaqeen bi Sharh Ihyaa' 'Uloomud-Deen, volume 5, p. 29] 

[7] Quoted by Imaam Abu Bakr al-Aajurri رحمه الله in Akhlaaq Ahlul-Qur'aan, p. 38 

[8] How to Approach and Understand the Quran, pp. 103-106 

posted by Seifeddine-M on 5th October 2015 - 0 comments


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