Pearls of the Qur'an
The Qur'aan and the rights due to it.
Revelation of the Qur’aan.
The sacred Book of Allaah was revealed to the last of the prophets, Hadhrat Muhammed Mustapha صلىاللهعليهوسلم . This is the last and complete code of Allaah's law, which was revealed. The tenets of Islam are based on this pure and sacred Book, in which there is no possibility of doubt whatsoever. Whoever has Imaan in it remains within the fold of Islam and whoever rejects it falls out of the fold of Islam.
When Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم reached the age of forty he was blessed with Nabuwwat (Prophethood). It was then that the revelation of the Qur’aan began, which was revealed over a span of twenty-three (23) years.
Initially the Qur’aan as a whole was revealed to the first sky, in the night of Laylatul-Qadr during the month of Ramadhaan. Allaah Ta’ala says in the Qur’aan:
شَهْرُ رَمَضَانَ الَّذِىْ اُنْزِلَ فِيْهِ الْقُرْآنُ(سوره بقره ع 23)
Translation: The month of Ramadhaan is the month in which the Qur’aan was revealed.
At another place, it is stated:
اِنَّا اَنْزَلْنَاهُ فِىْ لَيْلَةِ الْقَدْرِ (سوره قدر)
Translation: Verily, We revealed it (Qur’aan) in the night of Qadr.
Thereafter, by the order of Allaah Ta’ala, Hadhrat Jibra’eel (AS) would bring down sometimes one ayat, sometimes two ayats, sometimes ten ayats, and sometimes one whole surat, to Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم .
Before the wahi began, Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم by habit, preferred solitude. Therefore, taking provisions for a few days he would go to a cave on the outskirts of Makkah, which was known as ‘The cave of Hira’. There, Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم would spend the whole day and night in the remembrance of Allaah Ta’ala, until one day, Hadhrat Jibra’eel (AS) by the command of Allaah Ta’ala came in the presence of Rasulullaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم and delivered this message:
اِقْرَاْ بِاسْمِ رِبِّكَ الَّذِىْ خَلَقَ * خَلَقَ الْاِنْسَانَ مِنْ عَلَقٍ * اِقْرَاْ وَ رَبُّكَ الْاَكْرَمُ * اَلَّذِىْ عَلَّمَ بِالْقَلَمِ * عَلَّمَ الْاِنْسَانَ مَا لَمْ يَعْلَمْ (سوره علق)
Translation: (O Rasulullaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم ) Read in the name of your Rabb Who created (everything). He created men from a clot of blood. Read and your Rabb is most Magnanimous. Who taught (the literate ones) by the pen (through books). He taught men what he did not know.
The detail of this is mentioned in Bukhari, in which Hadhrat Aa’esha رضىاللهعنها says, “Initially, the revelation upon Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was in the form of true dreams. Whatever Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم would see in his dreams, would become reality as true as daylight." He then began preferring solitude. Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم would take provisions for a few days, and retreat to the cave of Hira. There he would engage in the Ibadat (worship) of Allaah Ta’ala. It was there one day that the archangel Jibra’eel (AS) appeared before Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم and instructed him saying, اِقْرَاْ i.e. recite. He e replied, “I am unlettered.” The angel then embraced Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم firmly, and instructed him to say اِقْرَاْ i.e. recite. Again, he e replied, “I am unlettered.” For the second time the angel embraced Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم and said اِقْرَاْ i.e. read. Again, he e replied, “I am not learned.” Then for the third time he embraced Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم firmly and said,
اِقْرَاْ بِاسْمِ رِبِّكَ الَّذِىْ خَلَقَ * خَلَقَ الْاِنْسَانَ مِنْ عَلَقٍ * اِقْرَاْ وَ رَبُّكَ الْاَكْرَمُ
Translation: (O Rasulullaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم) Read in the name of your Rabb Who created (everything). Who created men from a clot of blood. Read and your Rabb is most Magnanimous.
Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم returned home trembling. He said to Hadhrat Khadijah رضىاللهعنها, “Cover me with a sheet, cover me with a sheet”. A sheet was put over his blessed body. When calmness overcame Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم, he narrated the whole incident to Hadhrat Khadijah رضىاللهعنها, and remarked, “I fear for my life”. Hadhrat Khadijah رضىاللهعنها consoled him saying, “Do not fear, Allaah Ta’ala will not put you into any difficulty, because you keep ties with your family and relatives, you take care of the orphans and the poor, and you entertain your guests”. Thereafter, she took Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم to her paternal uncle’s son, Warqah ibn Nawfil who was very proficient and well versed in the Taurah, and asked him to listen to Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم”
He then enquired regarding the whole episode from Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم, upon which he صلىاللهعليهوسلم narrated the whole incident. Warqah then said, “This is the same archangel whom Allaah Ta’ala had sent to Hadhrat Moosa عليهالصلاةوالسلام.”
On a second occasion, the Wahi was revealed in a similar fashion. Hadhrat Jaabir ibn Abdullaah رضياللهتعالىعنه narrates that Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم said, “I was once walking when a voice came to me from the sky, When I lifted my gaze I saw the very Angel who came to the cave of Hira. He was sitting on a chair, which filled the space between the earth and the sky. Just seeing him filled my heart with awe. I returned home saying, “Cover me with a sheet, cover me with a sheet.” Hadhrat Jibra’eel (AS) then revealed the following Ayat's:
يايُّهَا الْمُدَّثِّرْ * قُمْ فَاَنْذِرْ * وَ رَبَّكَ فَكَبِّرْ * وَ ثِيَابَكَ فَطَهِّرْ * وَ الرُّجْزَ فَاهْجُرْ (سوره مدثر ع 1)
Translation: O you wrapped in a blanket. Stand up (amongst the people) and warn. Announce the greatness of your Rabb. And keep your clothing clean. And stay away from filth.
In this way, the Wahi was initially revealed. Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم became so passionate with this method of Wahi that at times while being engaged in conversation, he would gaze repeatedly towards the skies in anticipation of the Wahi.
Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم would say to Hadhrat Jibra’eel (AS), “O Jibra’eel! You should come to me more often.” Hadhrat Jibra’eel (AS) would then reply, “O Nabi of Allaah! We cannot descend from the sky without prior command from Allaah. Whenever Allaah desires, He commands us to descend.”
During the early days of Nabuwat, the Wahi was once held back for a few days. Due to this Nabi-e-Akram صلىاللهعليهوسلم became very despondent and longed for the Wahi to resume and at times even contemplated throwing himself off a mountain. When Hadhrat Jibra’eel (AS) saw the Nabi of Allaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم on the mountain, he promised him that the Wahi would soon resume and brought him down. Thereafter, the Wahi was revealed with continuity.
Description of the Wahi
Abdul Aziz ibn Abdullaah ibn Abie Salmah رضياللهتعالىعنه narrates from his uncle that Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم use to say, “The Wahi is revealed to me in two ways. In the first method Hadhrat Jibra’eel u would appear before me and teach me in the same manner as one person teaches another. In the second method the Wahi occurs to me like the sound of a bell, until it is embedded in my heart.”
It is narrated from Hadhrat Aa’esha رضىاللهعنها that Haarith ibn Hishaam رضياللهتعالىعنه once enquired from the Rasool of Allaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم, “O Messenger of Allaah! How is the Wahi revealed to you?” Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم replied, “At times it would occur to me like the sound of a bell, and this was most severe on me. It would then terminate, and I would remember the words. Sometimes the Angel would transform himself and speak to me, whatever he would say I memorised.”
Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه explains that when the revelation would be revealed, a buzzing sound like that of bees could be heard, in the proximity of Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم.
It is narrated from Hadhrat ibn Abbaas رضياللهتعالىعنه that when the revelation would take place, Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم would experience its severity, and would then memorise it. So that he does not forget, Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم would repeat the revealed verses with his lips, after which Allaah Ta’ala revealed the following ayats:
لاَ تُحَرِّكْ بِهِ لِسَانكَ لِتَعْجَلَ بِهِ * اِنَّ عَلَيْنَا جَمْعَهُ وَ قُرْآنَهُ * فَاِذَا قَرَاْنَاهُ فَاتَّبِعْ قُرْآنَهُ * ثُمَّ اِنَّ عَلَيْنَا بَيَانَهُ (سوره قيامه ع 1)
Translation: Do not move your tongue with the (words of the) Qur’aan to hasten it. Verily, it is Our responsibility to collect it and make you recite it. So when We have recited it (via Jibra’eel u), follow its recitation. Thereafter, (after We have revealed it) it is Our responsibility to make it clear.
Severity of the Wahi
At the time of Wahi, the blessed countenance of Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم would turn red. And because of the severity of the Wahi it would seem as if though Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was running out of breath, and after the revelation, perspiration would trickle from his blessed forehead like pearls. Hadhrat Ubadah ibn Saamit رضياللهتعالىعنه reports that while the Wahi was being revealed Nabi صلىاللهعليهوسلم would experience so much difficulty that the colour of his blessed face would change.
Hadhrat Ikramah رضياللهتعالىعنه relates that due to the difficulty experienced while the Wahi was revealed, it would seem as if though Nabi-e-Akram صلىاللهعليهوسلم was perplexed and shaken.Hadhrat Ubadah ibn Saamit رضياللهتعالىعنه says that when the Wahi was being revealed to Nabi-e-Akram صلىاللهعليهوسلم, he would lower his blessed head. Seeing this the Sahabah too would lower their heads. When the revelation was over, Nabi-e-Akram صلىاللهعليهوسلم would then lift his blessed head.
Ibnus-Sunni and Abu Nu’aim narrate from Hadhrat Abu Hurairah رضياللهتعالىعنه that due to the severity of the revelation Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم would experience headaches. Mehandi (henna) would be crushed into powder and placed as a relief on his blessed head. Once Hadhrat Ya’la ibn Umaiyyah رضياللهتعالىعنه requested Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه to let him know when the Wahi was being revealed as he would like to see the condition of Nabi-e-Kareemصلىاللهعليهوسلم. Hence, one day at a place called Ja’ranah, Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was sitting under a shelter, and a person came and asked a question. It was then that the signs of Wahi became apparent upon Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم. Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه called Hadhrat Ya’la رضياللهتعالىعنه. He bent down and saw that the blessed face of Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلمhad turned red, and because of the severity of the Wahi he صلىاللهعليهوسلم was experiencing great discomfort. After some time this condition changed.
Hadhrat Zaid ibn Thaabit رضياللهتعالىعنه mentions, “When the verse اُولِىالضَّرَرِ was being revealed the blessed leg of Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was resting on my leg. I felt an unbearable weight on my leg, and I felt as if though my leg would be crushed.”The severity of the Wahi was not only experienced by people, but also by animals. Hadhrat Abu Urwa Ad-Dawsi رضياللهتعالىعنه reports, “I saw the animal on which Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was riding at the time of revelation. It became very restless and began tightening its limbs. I thought its limbs would break. But it stood its ground."
In another narration Hadhrat Aa’esha رضىاللهعنها says that once when Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was riding a camel and the Wahi was being revealed, due to the weight and severity of the Wahi the camel would lower its head, and as the revelation was taking place the camel would not move its head. Hadhrat Aa’esha رضىاللهعنها then recited the following ayat:
اِنَّا سَنُلْقِىْ عَلَيْكَ قَوْلاً ثَقِيْلاً (سوره مزمل ع 1)
Translation: Verily We shall soon cast a weighty word (the Qur’aan) upon you.
At another place it is stated:
لَوْ اَنْزَلْنَا هذَا الْقُرْآنَ عَلى جَبَلٍ لَّرَئَيْتَهُ خَاشِعًا مُّتَصَدِّعًا مِّنْ خَشْيَةِ اللهِ (حشر 3)
Translation: If We have to reveal this Qur’aan to a mountain, you will see it humble itself and shatter out of fear for Allaah.
Reason why the Qur’aan was revealed portion by portion at intervals
When a person ponders deeply into the teachings of the Qur’aan, the following becomes apparent; Children in a madrasah are initially taught to recognise different alphabets. They are then taught to join letters to make up words, and construct sentences. Thereafter, as the capability of the child increases, so does his subject matter.
In the same fashion, initially, those who were astray (the kuffaar) were directed to the straight path through the teachings of the Qur’aan, and an effort was made to guide them towards Imaan. Through the teachings of the Qur’aan, a person gained the ability to differentiate between falsehood and truth. Next, the method of ibadat (worship) was taught. Thereafter, teachings on monetary dealings were instituted. Finally, morals and good character were expounded upon. In this manner man progressed from one stage to another until he reached the peak of purity and spirituality.
If the Qur’aan were revealed at once as a whole, this purpose would have been lost. Hence, as the capability of man increased so he progressed, and in a span of twenty-three years the course to reach the pinnacle of human excellence was achieved.
There are many other reasons for the Qur’aan to have been revealed gradually, portion by portion. Allaah says in the Qur’aan:
وَ قُرْآنًا فَرَقْنَاهُ لِتَقْرَأَهُ عَلَى النَّاسِ عَلَى مُكْثٍ وَّ نَزَّلْنَاهُ تَنْزِيْلاً
(بنى اسرائيل ع 12)
Translation: We have divided the Qur’aan so that you (O Muhammed صلىاللهعليهوسلم) may recite it steadily (at intervals) to the people and We have revealed it gradually.
At another place it is mentioned:
وَقَالَالَّذِيْنَكَفَرُوْالَوْلاَنُزِّلَعَلَيْهِالْقُرْآنُجُمْلَةًوَّاحِدَةً * كَذلِكَلِنُثَبِّتَبِهِفُؤَادَكَوَرَتَّلْنَاهُتَرْتِيْلاً (فرقانع 3)
Translation: Those who commit kufr say, “Why is the entire Qur’aan not revealed to him (Rasulullaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم) all at once?” We have revealed it in this manner so that your heart (O Rasulullaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم) may be strengthened by it and We have revealed it gradually.
A great scholar Allaamah Aalusi Baghdadi رحمةاللهعليه writes:
This Ummat has been honoured and blessed by Allaah Y. Therefore as a special favour, the Qur’aan has been revealed bit by bit, at stages, and the reason is that it could be memorised and understood easily. In this fashion, the Qur’aan was fortified and understood by the Ummat, and according to prevailing circumstances, appropriate guidance was given.
Compilation of the Qur’aan,
its arrangement etc.
At the time of the demise of Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم when the Wahi had terminated, the Qur’aan was not in a book form as it is today. The ayats and surats of the Qur’aan were written on pieces of paper, on the bark of date trees, on sheets of leather, on bones and soft stone. These were in the possession of various Sahabah رضياللهتعالىعنه, and many amongst them had memorised the entire Qur’aan.
During the khilafat of Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه, the mischief, which the imposter Musailamah Kazh-zhab had wreaked was getting out of hand, and the number of his followers was on the increase. Due to this, Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه dispatched an army under the leadership of Hadhrat Khalid ibn Waleed رضياللهتعالىعنه to oppose him. A fierce battle took place at a place called Yamamah in which approximately twelve hundred (1,200) Muslims were martyred and many others injured. The Muslims never experienced such great loss ever before. From amongst the martyrs were approximately seven hundred (700) Qurra and Huffaaz of the Qur’aan. Amongst the martyrs were certain prominent Sahabah, one of them was Hadhrat Zaid ibnul Khattaab رضياللهتعالىعنه the brother of Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه, the other was Hadhrat Saalim رضياللهتعالىعنه who was one of four Sahabah who had been selected by Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم to teach the Qur’aan; The other three being Hadhrat Abdullaah Ibn Mas’ud رضياللهتعالىعنه, Hadhrat Ubay ibn Ka’ab رضياللهتعالىعنه and Hadhrat Mu’aaz ibn Jabal رضياللهتعالىعنه.The group of men who were with Hadhrat Saalim رضياللهتعالىعنه were known as Ahlul-Qur’aan (the men of Qur’aan) and it seems they were all students of his, who had become martyrs with him.
The first person to contemplate the compilation of the Qur’aan was Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه. It was through him that Allaah Ta’ala fulfilled this promise:
اِنَّا نَحْنُ نَزَّلْنَا الذِّكْرَ وَ اِنَّا لَهُ لَحَافِظُوْنَ (سوره حجر ع 1)
Translation: Without doubt, only We have revealed the Reminder (the Qur’aan) and We shall certainly be its protectors.
Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه said to Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه, "Many Huffaaz of the Qur’aan are being martyred. In the battle of Yamamah alone a large number of Huffaaz were martyred. If this trend continues, it is feared a great portion of the Qur’aan will be lost to this Ummat. Therefore, my suggestion is that you pay urgent attention to this matter, and make arrangements for the Qur’aan to be compiled." Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه initially replied, “How is it possible to do something which Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم never did? Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه replied, insisting, “By Allaah! There is only good in this.
Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه kept on insisting until Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه was convinced that this was the correct thing to do. He then called for Hadhrat Zaid ibn Thaabit رضياللهتعالىعنه and explained to him the whole situation, and said to him, “Because you were a kaatib (scribe) in the time of Rasulullaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم, have I chosen you to compile the Qur’aan.” He too, put forward the same argument, which Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه himself stated. Nonetheless, he was persuaded, and accepted the responsibility. With great care and effort he began compiling the Qur’aan. This incident is mentioned in Bukhari thus:
فَتَتَبَّعْتُ الْقُرْآنَ اَجْمَعُهُ مِنَ الْعُسْبِ وَ اللُّحَافِ وَ صُدُوْرِ الرِّجَالِ
Translation: I searched for the Qur'aan, and found it on the bark of trees, pieces of leather, and the hearts of men.
Great care was taken in the compilation of the Qur’aan. Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه appointed both Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه and Hadhrat Zaid رضياللهتعالىعنه and asked them to sit at the door of the masjid. He instructed them not to accept any portion of the Qur'aan if two witnesses were not presented as well.
The compilation was done with great care and precaution. Those Sahabah رضياللهتعالىعنه who had any portion of the Qur’aan, would present it in the presence of two witnesses.
In this fashion, the Qur’aan was compiled with great effort, sacrifice and hard work of the Sahabah.
Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه made an all out effort during his khilafat that people learn and teach the Qur’aan. Those from amongst the Sahabah رضياللهتعالىعنه who were hafiz of the Qur’aan were dispatched to far-away places throughout the Muslim world to propagate and teach it.
The great service and achievement of Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه
During the khilafat of Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه, the boundaries of Islam spread far and wide. Countries such as Iran, Rome and Egypt had come into the fold of Islam, and because of the differences in the language of these countries, differences in the recitation of the Qur’aan occurred. These differences became even more apparent and widespread during the khilafat of Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه. Every tribe and people regarded their recitation correct and that of the others to be incorrect. The situation deteriorated to such an extent that they were close to drawing swords on one another. Seeing the situation worsening Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه, decided to have the Qur’aan rewritten. Hence, he acquired the Qur’aan that Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه had compiled which was at the time in the possession of Hadhrat Hafsah رضىاللهعنها. He had the Qur’aan written in one script and had it distributed throughout the Muslim world, and had the remaining copies destroyed. In this fashion, the different scripts were compiled into one and the differences in the Qur’aan was terminated forever, and the door for interpolation and distortion was closed forever.
Allaamah Suyuti رحمةاللهعليه writes that Ibn Teen and other Ulema have mentioned the differences between the compilation of Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه and that of Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه.
The compilation of Hadhrat Abu-Bakr رضياللهتعالىعنه was due to the concern that part of the Qur’aan will be lost to the Ummat, because the Sahabah were being martyred or were passing away due to natural deaths. Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه had the Qur’aan re-written in one script, because during his khilafat there were much differences in the recitation thereof between the people. Every person and tribe read the Qur’aan according to his language and dialect. The result was that the tribe of one dialect began belying the tribe of another dialect, and the matter was becoming serious. It is for reason that Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه had the Qur’aan compiled into one script. In the compilation, the Quraishi dialect was given preference over other dialects.
This incident has been mentioned in some detail in Bukhari. Hence, Hadhrat Anas رضياللهتعالىعنه reports that when Hadhrat Huzhaifah رضياللهتعالىعنه participated in the battle of Armenia and Azerbaijan and witnessed the differences in the qira’at (recitation) of the various Muslim armies. He became very perturbed. Returning to Madinah Munawwarah, he addressed Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه thus, “O! Ameerul-Mu’mineen, check on the matters regarding the Qur’aan, before this Ummat differ regarding it, as did the Jews and Christians before them.
Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه then acquired the copy of the Qur’aan which Hadhrat Zaid ibn Thaabit رضياللهتعالىعنه had compiled, from Hadhrat Hafsah رضىاللهعنها. He then instructed Hadhrat Zaid ibn Thaabit رضياللهتعالىعنه, Hadhrat Sa’eed ibnul Aas رضياللهتعالىعنه, Hadhrat Abdullaah ibn Zubair رضياللهتعالىعنه and Hadhrat Abdur-Rahmaan ibnul Haarith رضياللهتعالىعنه to compile the Qur’aan in one script. He advised them that if there was any differences among them in regards to the script, they should then adopt the script of the Quraish, because the Qur’aan was revealed in the language of the Quraish.
In this manner under the scrutiny of experts, the compilation of the Qur’aan took place, spanning a period of five years from 25 hijri to 30 hijri. The enthusiasm and dedication of the Sahabah was so great that Sahabah the likes of Ibn Mas’ud رضياللهتعالىعنه were annoyed that their services were not acquired.
After the completion of this task, various copies were sent to different regions. Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه kept one copy for the people of Madinah and one copy for himself, which was known as Imaam. Other copies were distributed in Makkah, Syria, Kufa and Basrah.
This was the achievement of Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه, which the Ummat in every era appreciated, and will continue to appreciate. In this issue, Hadhrat Ali رضياللهتعالىعنه was foremost. He said, "If I were the ruler then I would have done the same regarding the copies of the Qur’aan as Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه had done."
The Muslims now have such a statute, codified and authentic book the like of which there is none. The Taurah and Injeel are concocted and corrupt through and through. However, look at the Qur’aan, there is not even the slightest variation what so ever, it is in its pure form from the time of revelation right up to this day.
Qadhi Abu-Bakr رحمةاللهعليه says, “We have full conviction that this is the very same Qur’aan which Allaah Ta’ala has revealed, there is no distortion in it at all.”
Allaamah Baghwi رحمةاللهعليه testifies the same in the following words, “The Sahabah compiled the Qur’aan which Allaah Ta’ala had revealed upon his beloved Nabi e. The Sahabah did not distort the Qur’aan in any way.”
The sequence of the surats in the Qur’aan, their naming, the counting of the ayats and their sequence are all revelation. Man’s intelligence and logic has no inference in this matter. Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم taught the Sahabah the above. They did not interfere in any way in the naming and sequence of the surats.
Hadhrat Uthmaan ibn Abil-Aas رضياللهتعالىعنه says that Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم said, “Hadhrat Jibra’eel came to me and instructed me to place the ayat انَّاللهيامربالعدلوالاحسانوايتاءذىالقربى in a certain surat at a particular place.
Allamah Suyuti رحمةاللهعليه writes that Zarkashi in his book, Burhaan, and Abu Ja’far ibnuz Zubair رحمةاللهعليه in his book, Munasabaat have written that the sequence of the ayats in the Qur’aan has been indicated by Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم himself, there is no difference regarding this matter among the Muslims.
Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه says that at the time when the Qur’aan was revealed upon Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم, he would instruct the scribes to place the ayat in a specific surat, where such and such is mentioned, and when another ayat would be revealed the same instructions would be given to the scribes.
The scripts which Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه had written were void of dot’s and i’raab. This was formulated later. The dot’s and i’raab together with the para’s and ruku’s are not revelation as is the case with the surat’s and ayat’s. This, the Sahabah did, to facilitate the recitation of the Qur’aan. The Qurra and Ulema later divided the Qur’aan into para’s and ruku’s.
Hence, it is written in Rumuzul-Qur’aan that Hajjaaj ibn Yusuf in his era had instructed that the dot’s and i’raab be included in the script of the Qur’aan. The Qur’aan was divided equally into thirty parts, and further each part was divided into four quarters. In Hada’equl-Bayaan it is written that this division was not made in the time of Rasulullaah صلىاللهعليهوسلم or the Khulafa-e-Rashideen. When the need arose, the Sahahah divided the Qur’aan, and the Tabi’een made the divisions equal.
Allamah Zamakh’shari رحمةاللهعليه says that there are many benefits in having the Qur’aan divided into various parts. Firstly, when different aspects are mentioned in separate chapters, this is better then having them discussed in one long chapter. Secondly, when finishing one surat whilst reciting, and then starting the next creates a new vigour and freshness in a person.
It is narrated that the ruku’s were formulated in the following manner. During the month of Ramadhaan, in taraweeh, Hadhrat Uthmaan رضياللهتعالىعنه would perform twenty rakats a night, completing on the twenty seventh night making a total of five hundred and forty rakats (540), hence the same amount of ruku’s in the Qur’aan.
The Qur’aan a Miracle
Many Ambiya عليهمالسلام were sent to the world for the guidance of mankind. However, many of their people never accepted them. They were given miracles by Allaah Y to prove their authenticity. The greatest miracle of Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم is the Qur’aan.
Eloquence and rhetoric of the Qur’aan
It is an undeniable fact that Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was unlettered. He never attended any place of learning, nor did he take part in poetry-saying. Yet after a period of forty years the world heard from his blessed lips the words of Allaah whose eloquence, rhetoric, teachings and wisdom left them wonder-struck. The Qur'aan is such a complete code of life from which every individual and community got guidance. The kuffaar were of the opinion that it was possible that Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was decorating the writings of another person and presenting it to the world. But the Qur’aan refuted this claim of theirs, and put a challenge to them thus,
وَ اِنْ كُنْتُمْ فِىْ رَيْبٍ مِمَّا نَزّلْنَا عَلى عَبْدِنَا فأتُوا بِسُوْرَةٍ مِّنْ مِّثْلِه وَ ادْعُوْا شُهَدَائَكُمْ مِنْ دُوْنِ اللهِ اِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِيْنَ (بقره ع 3)
Translation: If you are in doubt about what We have revealed to Our bondsman, then produce even a single Surah like any in the Qur’aan. And call your witnesses besides Allaah if you are truthful.
The Arabs were very boastful of their eloquence and rhetoric and regarded the rest of the world to be illiterate and dumb. The world even bore testimony to this fact, notwithstanding this they could not produce any ayat in challenge to the Qur’aan.
Hadhrat Sa’eed Aamir was a well-known and proficient poet. Once, Hadhrat Umar رضياللهتعالىعنه requested him to read out some of his poetry. He began reciting Surah Baqarah and said, “O! Ameerul-Mumineen from the time Allaah blessed me with the recitation of the Qur’aan, I find no joy in reciting poetry.”
Hadhrat Khalid ibn Aqabah says, “By Allaah the Qur’aan has a unique sweetness, a soothing tranquility. Its roots are nourishment for the soul, and its branches are laden with a variety of fruit. The words of the Qur’aan are beyond the capacity of men."
Once Abu Harb ibn Khuwailid ibn Aamir ibn Aqeel came in the presence of Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم. Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم recited the Qur’aan-e-Kareem to him and invited him to the Deen of Islam. He remarked, "Most surely what you have recited is from Allaah, or that which was read to you by some person who received it from Allaah Ta’ala. Most surely you have such beautiful words which I have not heard before."
After accepting Islam, Hadhrat Qais Aslami رضياللهتعالىعنه came to his people and addressed them thus, “O! The clan of Saleem! I have heard the speeches of the people of Rome and Persia, and also to the poetry of the soothsayers and Arabs. But the speech of Muhammed (صلىاللهعليهوسلم) is different. Therefore follow me in regardstoMuhammed (صلىاللهعليهوسلم), and remember you have family ties with him.”
Hadhrat Tufail ibn Amr Dausi رضياللهتعالىعنه was a renowned and great poet. When he came to Makkah the people warned him not to listen to the talk of that magician (referring to Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم). They told him that in his speech there is such mesmerism, which split son from father and wife from husband.
Hadhrat Tufail رضياللهتعالىعنه says that the people would follow me wherever I went, lest I listen to his speech. Hence, I made I vow that I will have no contact at all with him, nor will I listen to his speech.
One morning I went to the Haram, and coincidentally Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم was performing namaaz in close proximity to the Ka’bah. I stood next to him and listened. It seemed Allaah destined that I listen to His Book. I thought to myself that I am an intellectual, intelligent and a prolific poet. I can differentiate wrong from right, after all what is there that is stopping me from listening to his speech. If it is good what he is saying then I will accept it, and if it is bad, I am not obliged to follow. I waited till Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم left for home.
I followed Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم. When he entered the house, I followed him in, and said, “O Muhammed! (صلىاللهعليهوسلم), your people are telling me so and so. However, Allaah has desired contrary to that and has given me the opportunity to listening to your recitation. It was very beautiful. Therefore, present to me what you have to say." Nabi-e-Kareem صلىاللهعليهوسلم invited him to accept Islaam and recited a few verses of the Qur’aan to him. Hadhrat Tufail رضياللهتعالىعنه remarked, “I haven’t heard a more beautiful presentation of the Qur’aan than this.”