Every Muslim knows that there are many merits of Tilawat-ul-Quran. We know there are lots of blessings and rewards for the one who do tilawah of the Quran. We know it is one of the greatest form of dhikr (remembering allaah). We also have heard lots of stories of sahabah and other pious people who used to do lots of tilawah.
But all these benefits are promised with the Real Tilawah. Tilawah as was done by Prophet SAW and his companions, tilawah which keeps you away from the eternal fire, tilawah which is a source of forgiveness, tilawah which elevates your ranks, tilawah which brings you closer to Allaah. We should know what is real tilawah!
I give you three scenarios:
- The Fog
I recite the arabic words of Quran while I do not understand them. So while I know these are Allah’s words, I do not understand them and I have no curiosity about what Allah is telling me. I finish reading, keep the mushaf and go back to my life.
- The SunriseI recite the Arabic words of Quran but I do understand them. I either know Arabic or I read the translation and tafseer alongside the recitation of Arabic words. I admire the linguistic miracle, I may feel emotional upheaval at the sound and the meaning. I finish reading, keep the mushaf and go back to my life.
- The RainI recite the Arabic words of Quran and I understand them. I interact with Allah as He is talking to me. I read an ayah which mentions Allaahs mercy and I ask Him for it and I ask refuge when I read an ayah which mentions His torment. I finish reading, I keep the mushaf but I take its message with me. I turn to my tasks and chores, my responsibilities and challenges, my temptations and my fears equipped with this new knowledge and I apply it. I think before doing and I think after doing. Allaah is constantly in my thoughts and I feel His presence.
Which of the three above scenarios is the real “Tilawat-ul-Quran”. Is number one is a bit too abrupt or does number three describes things which are not exactly part of Tilawat-ul Quran? I mean Tilawat is while we are uttering the words, right?
We find the naswer with ibn Masud (may Allaah be pleased with him)
Ibn Masud said, “By He in Whose Hand is my soul! The right Tilawah is allowing what
it makes lawful, prohibiting what it makes unlawful, reciting it as it was revealed by Allah, not changing the words from their places, and not interpreting it with other than its actual interpretation.”