Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Studying Quran

Bism Illah wa as salaamu alaykum.

All the tahfeedth programmes here start the students with Qaidat an Nooraniyah. It a very simple and effective way to learn to read Arabic - especially Quranic Arabic - correctly and accurately. The shaykh we are told to listen to for our memorization is Sheikh Ibrahim Al Akhdar. He is the former Imam of Masjid an Nabawi and mashaa'Allah, tabarak Allah his recitation is incredibly clear and precise. You can hear every technique of tajweed, count exactly the harakat for each madd, mashaa'Allah. If you would like to listen to him, check out http://www.tanzil.net, inshaa'Allah.

The other shaykh we are told to listen to, second to Ibrahim al Akhdar, is Shaikh Al Hudhaify, the current Imam at Masjid an Nabawi. Perhaps we are told these because they are from Madinah? I don't know. However, I must stay that listening to Ibrahim Al Akhdar has improved my recitation dramatically, mashaa'Allah. May Allah reward him with lofty places in Jennah al Firdaus - ameen.

We are told that every day we should memorize something, even if it is only one ayah. Otherwise we are giving in to shaytaan's whispers. We learn the tajweed rules in the first three levels of the Arabic programme, but in levels 3 and 4, they learn the makhaarij (correct pronunciation) of the letters, mashaa'Allah. At each level, we learn more and our Quran recitation is checked for more of the tajweed rules and correct makhraj.  We work backwards in the Quran, in order. That meant that whatever suwar I knew in my hodgepodge  way had to be ordered and I had to learn any that I was missing in between as I went in order backwards for Juz Ammah.

Exams for Quran are by Juz, and the bigger exams are for 5, 10,15... Ajuz. In these, the teacher will select one or two surahs from each Juz and have the student recite a part of it from any ayah they instruct them. For this reason, it is very important to do revision of the suwar that have been memorized on a daily basis as well. These must be rotated and always kept up so that they aren't forgotten as the repertoire of suwar grows, inshaa'Allah.

There are so many excellent programs online to learn tajweed rules and the makhaarij of letters that really one can do excellent home study of the Quran. Of course, it is important for your recitation to be checked regularly by someone who is qualified to do so, but most surely you can do a lot by yourself if you are motivated. I find that even when we have a vacation now, I take time to memorize a new surah and keep my revision up, mashaa'Allah.

May we all learn the Quran so that we feel it in our hearts, implement it in our lives, and seek it for our souls - ameen.


  1. Masha Allah. It's awesome that you are able to Study at a Womens Institute. So do your children attend with you? Or, do they attend a different program?

  2. Yes, all three girls go with me, mashaa'Allah. My youngest daughter is in KG2 class mashaa'Allah. She comes home with all manner of dua' and information about the Sunnah which ties in perfectly with what we do and she's been raised with. My 8 year old daughter and 11 year old step daughter are in the Ibtidaa'ee program, which does Quran, tajweed rules, some Arabic, and various tidbits of Islamic studies. It is a wonderful set-up mashaa'Allah and the timings are from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. so it doesn't interfere with hubby's work timings or my stepson's school timings, al hamdu l'Illah.

  3. MashaAllah sis May Allah increase you in all that is good. My daughters and I are also on a journey of Quran memorisation and tajweed and life feels so beautiful and content because of that Allah accept our efforts and make them for His sake alone Aameen

  4. Mai- How much Arabic and Quran did you know prior to living in Madinah? Also, did the bulk of your islamic knowledge gained in Madinah?

  5. Umm Salwaa,

    I lived in Bahrain for 16 years so I had studied Arabic before. I knew how to read Arabic and had reached a level of being able to write and speak in present, past, and future tense well over 10 years ago, mashaa'Allah. The biggest problem was that in the 7 years of marriage after leaving Bahrain and before coming to Madinah, I didn't use the Arabic and lost much of it. As for Quran, I knew up to perhaps surat al lail in Juz Amma and also various other bits from the Quran, like Surat al Mulk, part of Ar-Rahman, certain ayaat from Al Baqarah, Al Hashr, Ar-Rum, Ghaafir, etc. The problem was that I didn't learn with tajweed rules.

    Since coming to Madinah, my studies have put my Arabic together in a proper way mashaa'Allah. I am learning to read and comprehend more than before. I have a consistent progress in Quran and have learned the rules of tajweed, so the memorization done here is inshaa'Allah, correct.

    As for the bulk of my Islamic knowledge, it was in the earlier years of my Islam. Perhaps in the second year of Islam, I read Sahih Bukhari and much of Sahih Muslim. I was blessed to be living in Bahrain and have the chance to buy the full volume sets with English translation of Bukhari, Muslim, Muwatta, The Muslim (Minhaj al Muslim), Riyaad as Saaliheen, and others. That was what established me in my deen and practice.

    When I say my Islam is based on Quran and Sunnah, I really mean it LOL! I read the Book of Prayer and the established my sunnah and nawafil prayers. I read the book of fasting and established my sunnah fasts. It went on like that, with each book of hadith influencing a different aspect of my life.

    I have a library of books, including the Prophet's Prayer Described, The Night Prayer, The Ideal Muslimah, etc. and constantly read from solid online sources and download e-books. Before coming to Madinah I already had the majority of information I have now. What has happened is that being here, with access to more detailed information and explanations of various hadith and ayaat from Quran, has refined some knowledge, increased on it, and confirmed much of what I learned before. It is an environment similar to a candy store for those of us who really want truth and correct information.

    Madinah is a very blessed place for gaining 'ilm. I hope and pray that I learn much more...and that my taqwa and emaan will increase exponentially here.

  6. Bismillaah

    as salaamu alaiki ukhti,

    Baarak Allahu feeki, your blog has been a great source of reading pleasure, ma shaa Allah.

    Ukhti, I wonder if you could advise me please. I am currently undertaking an Education degree and hope that Allah will facilitate a hijrah for me to Saudiyyah. However, I would like to work in a city where I will have access to studying both the Quran and Arabic. Because I will be working, I will need to have access to these classes either on weekends or in the afternoon/evenings during the working week. Do you know if there are any such opportunities available for working women?

    Jazaakillaahu khayraa,
    Ummul Baraa

  7. Wa alaykum as salaam wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh Ummul Baraa.

    Here in Madinah, the program we attend in the morning, also runs in the afternoon, around Asr time. In addition, tahfeedth programs are usually from Asr to Maghrib. You will find that to be the case all over Saudi Arabia. The only difference is that the smaller cities do not seem to have any Arabic programs, whereas here, in Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam, etc there are programs for both, mashaa'Allah. I can say, from talking to sisters who live in Taif, Ha'il, and Qassim, that there are no Arabic programs for them there, so far.

    Please also bear in mind that you can have private tuition. For around SAR 500 per month, you can have someone teach you 4-5 days a week and then it can be at a time convenient to you.

    Please check and double check that the qualifications you are getting will be appropriate for getting employment here, inshaa'Allah.

    I wish you every success in your studies and during this most blessed and opportune month - ameen.

    Wa iyaaki wa feeki Barak Allah wa as salaamu alaykum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh.

  8. Dearest sister Mai,

    Jazaakillaahu khayraa and I apologise for not responding sooner as I've been inundated with deadlines. *smile*

    You really have given me good news and in shaa Allah when I do attempt to apply for teaching positions I will do so with the information in mind. I too have heard that classes are not easy to come by in some of the other cities such as Ha'il.

    With regard to researching the type of degree required. I've conducted some research over the last 5 years or so and have decided to complete my current studies in a Bachelor of Education and after a final teaching internship, I will enroll in a Masters of either Tesol or Applied Linguistics in shaa Allah. I also hope to compliment those qualifications with a CELTA as I believe it would give me valuable ESL teaching experience and truly Allah is the One who facilitates and this is just my plan.

    From your experience, do you think I may be in good running for a variety of teaching position, bi ithnillaah?

    wassalaamu alaiki wa baarak Allahu feeki.

    Ummul Baraa


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