The day of my shahaadah so many years ago….
I’m quietly thinking of all the years since that moment in history. I’m marveling at the fact that no matter how my living situation and family composition has changed, the guidance, the companionship, the challenge of the Qur’an has been there at every turn…
The ayats in Sura Ali Imran: “O You who have believed, Fear your Lord as He should be feared and do not die except as Muslims. And hold fast to the rope of Allah all together and do not be divided. And remember the favor of Allah upon you when you were enemies and by His grace He made you brethren. And you were on the brink of the pit of the Fire and He saved you from it…..” this hung as a decoration in the living room where I stayed my first two months as a new Muslim.
Moving through time I remember Ayatul Kursi in the Yusuf Ali Translation of Qur’an. Even in English the ayat sparkled as the gem it is. I had to learn it. By then I could make out the Arabic letters and memorize in Arabic. It was not until years later that i came to know the value of reciting this ayat. Subhan Allah.
I don’t know why these ayats from Surah al A’raf stand out but I can always remember the English translation that says “….and on the heights there are some who will recognize all by their marks. They will call out to the dwellers of Paradise salaamun alaikum. They would not have entered Paradise yet, but they will have hope to enter.”
Surah Ar Rahman: the beauty; the serenity in the perfect repetition found as i buried my head in my sewing machine to drown out the confusion of living life with people full of contradictions, but which of the favors of your Lord will you two deny? Piece by piece it came to memory…
Suratul Baqarah to Surah al- A’raf: word for word translations in Tafsir class. I lived miles away from the masjid, but just could not miss the opportunity to learn the meanings of each word sent to mankind from our Lord. I just wanted to grab them all, but didn’t get them all in memory.
What did i come back to? I came back to the ayats from Ali Imran that hung on the wall of the first house I lived in as a new Muslim, now in living color in Arabic, and with understanding and memorization. I was grateful that Allah had brought me this far and back again.
By the time our class got through Surah al A’raf I had to move too far to commute any longer, but I feel such a connection with Qur’an and with the people of the Qur’an! Allah lets me know He is near: As I’m working on Surah Waqiah, I read a post here about a lesson by Nouman Ali Khan and decided to listen to something from him. I found a lecture that was titled “When Allah Swore by the Stars” Which surah was this talking about? And where does his recitation begin? Right where I’m learning. What a blessing! My daughter was playing with my phone and when i got into the car which surah was being recited, and right at my point? I had not gone to that site before… so that’s a wonder and a blessing and a reminder. Subhan Allah.
Now I take just one new ayat per day at or before Fajr. And as I pray during the day I recite in order from the beginning of what I have until the end of Surah an Naas, then start again Alif laam meem. That way i visit each surah regularly. I’ve seen this from a couple different imams who are huffaz. I’m far from that, but still want to keep what Allah has allowed me to learn.
In sha Allah we will all continue to strive to keep Qur’an as our constant companion, and may Allah bless us with the blessings of reciting each letter, ameen.