Al Qur’an: The biggest ever challenge!


The Qur’an is the ultimate and definitive Holy book revealed upon the final Prophet, Muhammad PBUH exclusively intended for the everlasting guidance and enlightenment of the entire mankind. Staunch belief in the divinity of Qur’an is a prerequisite to faith and constitutes one of the pillars of Eemaan.

Prior to the bestowing of Qur’an, Allah SWT revealed divine books – Psalms, Gospel, Torah and other holy scriptures for the betterment of the people. Instead of sanctifying, they unfortunately distorted the illustrated heavenly message beyond its reason, rendering it enormously imprecise from its authentic form. Allah SWT reprimands, “So woe to those who write the scripture with their own hands, then say, “This is from Allah,” in order to exchange it for a small price. Woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for what they earn.” [Al Baqarah; 2:79].

Quran

To counter this scandalous act, Allah SWT revealed the Holy Qur’an as an affirmation to the previous books. Allah SWT mentions, “And it was not (possible) for this Qur’an to be produced by other than Allah SWT, but (it is) a confirmation of what was before it and a detailed explanation of the (former) Scripture, about which there is no doubt from the Lord of the worlds.” [Yunus; 10:37].

Almighty Allah SWT ensures the accuracy of divine message by safeguarding Qur’an against addition. HE says, “Indeed, it is WE who sent down the message (i.e., the Qur’an), and indeed WE will be its guardian” [Al Hijr; 15:9]. Such is the purity of Qur’an that not even a single word of it has ever been altered or tampered despite countless attempts being made in past which were all defeated.

Narrated by Abu Hurairah RA that the Prophet Muhammad PBUH said, “Every Prophet was given miracles because of which people believed, but what I have been given, is Divine Inspiration which Allah has revealed to me. So I hope that my followers will outnumber the followers of the other Prophets on the Day of Resurrection.” [Bukhari and Muslim]. The Prophet PBUH was especially entrusted with the miraculous Qur’an that confronted mankind to create something akin to it.

Initially, Allah SWT challenged the disbelievers to produce at least ten chapters like that of Qur’an. The Almighty said, “Or do they say, “He invented it”? Say [O Muhammad], “Then bring ten surahs like it that have been invented and call upon (for assistance) whomever you can besides Allah, if you should be truthful”. [Hud; 11:13]. And then ALLAH SWT offered them relatively easier task to produce a single chapter like that of HIS book, The glorified Lord mentioned, “And if you are in doubt about what WE have sent down (i.e., the Qur’an) upon Our servant (i.e., Prophet Muhammad PBUH), then produce a surah (chapter) the like thereof and call upon your witnesses (i.e., supporters) other than Allah, if you should be truthful”. [Al Baqarah; 2:23]. Subsequently HE dared the skeptics to come up with one single verse. Allah SWT says, “Then let them produce a statement like it, if they should be truthful”. [At-Tur; 52:34]

The pagans, although believed to be most eloquent among all nations, developed tremendous hatred and enmity against the Prophet PBUH and his religion for being unsuccessful to withstand and respond to the challenge. Allah SWT befittingly mentions, “But if you do not, and you will never be able to…” [Al Baqarah; 2:24] signifying that they will never be able to confront the glorious Qur’an. This is indeed a miracle that ALLAH SWT has clearly stated without doubt that the noble Qur’an will never be opposed or challenged by anything alike for eternity.

The content of Qur’an has not been modified till date and shall never be amended. Every word and meaning in the Qur’an is eloquent and cannot be surpassed. The expressions in the Qur’an are perfect and its meanings are explained. The one who recites the holy Qur’an realizes that it reflects various levels of superiority through the apparent and obscured meanings that it reveals.

The Qur’an is true, just and complete with bless and guidance. It is devoid of exaggerations, myth or falsehood, unlike Arabic and other types of poems full of fabrication. As for the Qur’an, it is entirely eloquent in the most perfect manner, as those who have knowledge in such matters and understand Arabic methods of speech and expressions concord. The more frequent Quranic stories are repeated, the more beneficial and beautiful they become. The mystique of Qur’an seldom fades, nor do the scholars ever get bored with it. When the Qur’an promises, it opens the hearts and the ears, making them eager to attain the abode of peace – Paradise – and to be the neighbours of the Throne of the Most Beneficent.

It is impossible to ever produce something like the Qur’an, when the Qur’an is the Word of Allah SWT Who created everything. How can the words of the created ever be similar to the Words of the Creator? The challenge becomes audacious when Allah SWT the almighty, “Say (O Muhammad), “If mankind and the jinn gathered in order to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could not produce the like of it, even if they were to each other assistance” [Al Isra; 17:88]. It implies that speech of the Lord of all that exists incomparable to the language of the created beings, just as HIS attributes are unique. Nothing resembles HIS existence. Exalted is HE, the Most Holy, and the Sublime.

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ISLAMIC APPROACH TOWARDS VACATIONS


Students and parents expectantly anticipate vacations. They provide much needed break from hectic day-to-day schedule and form vital part of our lives. Vacations might be a boon if time is efficiently managed or could be bane if left slackly. Many a time vacations fall prey to unorganised and poor planning which reaps little or no benefit at all.

The religion of ALLAH SWT paves way for individuals’ rest and relaxes. A companion of the Prophet PBUH by the name of Handhalah Ibn ‘Aamir, RA complained ALLAH’s messenger that the intensity of his imaan diminishes when he in the company of wife and children (as opposed to the time when he was in the companionship of Prophet PBUH). ALLAH’s apostle responded by saying: “A time for this and a time for that” (Bukhari & Muslim) which means an hour of worship to enhance one’s imaan, and an hour of dedicating life for family being within the tenets of Islam to enrich imaan. ‘Ali Ibn Abu Taalib, RA used to say: “Relax your hearts and find some means of entertainment for them, because they become apathetic just as bodies get fatigued.”

One of the most exasperating habits cultivated during vacation is that of staying up for night and sleeping during the day thereby skipping dawn prayers. The widespread ill practices of vacations are gluing eyes to the television sets, surfing online, frequenting social networks, gaming addiction, so on and so forth. The content available on said media is most of times contemptible and leads to immense destruction.

Children reading QURAN

On contrary, vacations provide golden chance to unwind and analyse our lives. We should contemplate whether we are being better Muslims or the other way round. Plan your holidays such that it can provide you prospect of spiritual recharge. It presents us an ideal opportunity to boost one’s deen (religion).  Parents must ensure that their children offer all the obligatory prayers in congregation which may not be possible during school. Improve and enhance recitation of holy Quran. Initiate efforts to memorize parts of glorious Quran and learn ahadith of our beloved Prophet PBUH. Employ time in studying Seerah of prophets and sahaba. Foster the habit of implementing Sunnah in every walk of our lives. Endeavour to enlight our future generation with the awareness and beauty of Islam. It is an utter disgrace for us that our children are capable of solving complex problems pertaining to math and physics but possess little or no knowledge of our Prophet and his companions. More importantly, warrant vacations to be sin free.

In most cities there are arrangements for Islamic summer camps which provide an ideal atmosphere to learn deen (religion). Parents must try and get in touch with the organisers and enrol their wards in these camps. Most of these camps provide coaching as well as edutainment to children in order to make the course lively.

Vacations can be spiritually enriching for both parents and kids provided if engaged islamically. It is an excellent occasion for us to develop our kids’ character and uplift their Imaan! Let us pray and hope that inshALLAH these holidays are source for our salvation. Aameen

The Messenger of ALLAH PBUH said:“The best amongst you are those who have the best manners and character.” (Sahih Bukhari)

Blessings of Fasting


Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It is a very blessed month and we should strive to spend more time in prayer, reciting Quran, charity and doing good things during this month. We list out the main things that Muslims can and should strive to achieve during this blessed month:

1. Attain Taqwa

Allah SWT says: “O you who believe, fasting has been prescribed for you as it has been prescribed for people before you so that you will (learn how to) attain Taqwa,” [Al-Baqarah, 2:183]. Attainment of Taqwa (Piety) is the foremost requirement in the life of a believer. One who has attained Taqwa has attained excellence in the worship of the Lord. It is beyond doubt that fasting stands as one of the sublime means in attaining it. In many verses of the Qur’an Allah SWT says that the reward of the people of Taqwa is Paradise. “Be quick in the race for forgiveness from your Lord and for a garden whose width is that (of the whole) of the heavens and of the earth prepared for the Muttaqeen (people of Taqwa), [Al-Imran 3:133].

2. Seek Taubah

Making Taubah is a precursor to achieving Taqwa and what better time than the month of Ramadan to do this. The month of Ramadan provides a wonderful opportunity for accounting of ones’ sins and making repentance. Taubah is about reflecting on oneself and then taking note of the sins that one commits. As human beings, we are prone to making mistakes and it is incumbent upon us to repent for the mistakes that we commit. It should not become a ritualistic exercise but we should be sincere in our Taubah. In fact, the last few 10 days of Ramadan, when a lot of Muslims observe ‘Aetkaaf’ in the mosque, is one of the best times to reflect on ourselves and make Taubah.
Taubah is something that is between you and Allah SWT. Seeking Taubah is not only confined to Ramadhan, but is a continuous process. Allah SWT says: “Surely, Allah loves those people who constantly repent to Him (do Taubah to Him),” [Al-Baqarah 2:222]. One important point to take note of in this verse is that Allah SWT did not say: “Allah loves the Taa’ibeen (those who repent),” but he said ‘Tawwabeen’ which means “those who constantly, over and over, repent to Allah.”
The Messenger of Allah SWT said: “O mankind! Do Taubah (repent) to Allah and seek His forgiveness, for surely, I do so 100 times every single day.” [Saheeh Muslim]. In actuality Taubah is one of the purposes of our very creation as human beings. Human nature is submerged in sins. The month of Ramadan gives us a huge opportunity to do Taubah and draw ourselves close to Allah’s will.


3. Seek Forgiveness

None among us is perfect. We all have weaknesses and bound to indulge in wrongdoing. We commit sins out of ignorance or for fulfilment of desires and whims. Abu Hurairah narrated that Allah’s Messenger PBUH said: “Whoever observes fasts during the month of Ramadan out of sincere faith, and hoping to attain ALLAH’s rewards, and then all his past sins will be forgiven,” [Bukhari]. “Whoever establishes prayers during the nights of Ramadan (and that is called Qiyam) faithfully out of sincere faith and hoping to attain ALLAH’s rewards (not for exhibition), all his past sins will be forgiven.” [Bukhari]


4. Develop Relation with Quran

Recite Qur’an as much as you can

As this sublime truth, the glorious Quran was revealed in the month of Ramadan. It deserves more attention and thoughtfulness during this month. We should strive to come closer to Quran and it’s message during this blessed month. It is beyond doubt that whoever develops a connect with the Quran will surely attain the goal of Ramadan (i.e. attainment of self-restraint, piety and noble conduct). Allah SWT says: “And We have sent down to you the Book (the Qur’an) as an exposition of everything, a guidance, a mercy, and glad tidings for those who have submitted themselves (to Allah as Muslims),” [An-Nahl 16:89].

The days and nights of Ramadan should be spent in the recitation of the Qur’an and reflection on its meaning. The Prophet PBUH said: “Verily, Allah elevates some people with this Qur’an and humiliates others by it,” [Muslim].

Abdullah ibn `Amr reported that the Messenger of ALLAH PBUH said: “The fast and the Qur’an are two intercessors for the servant of ALLAH on the Day of Resurrection. The fast will say: ‘O Lord, I prevented him from his food and desires during the day. Let me intercede for him.’ The Qur’an will say: ‘I prevented him from asleep. Let me intercede for him.’ And their intercession will be accepted,” [Ahmad].

5. Strive to be amongst Siddeeqeen (true followers) and Shuhadaa (martyrs)

A man came to Prophet PBUH and said: “O Messenger of ALLAH PBUH, what if I testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah SWT and that you are the messenger of Allah and I observe the five daily prayers, and I pay the Zakaah, and I fast and stand in prayer in Ramadan, then amongst whom shall I be? He PBUH said, Among Siddeeqeen and the Shuhadaa,” [Ibn Hibban].

6. Cut sexual desires

Fasting also helps in restricting ones’ desires. Alqama said: ‘’While I was walking with ‘Abdullah he said, “We were in the company of the Prophet and he said, ‘He who can afford to marry should marry, because it will help him refrain from looking at other women, and save his private parts from looking at other women, and save his private parts from committing illegal sexual relation; and he who cannot afford to marry is advised to fast, as fasting will diminish his sexual power,” [Bukhari].

May Allah bless us all and help us in achieving the true virtues of Ramadan. Aameen