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Quran and Sunnah

How to Extract Gems from the Quran – Part 2

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This is Part #2 of a multipart post: You can find Part 1 here

Step 2: Sentence structure – Placement of Words in an Ayah:

a – Understand the main meaning of the Ayah.

b – Look for the main direct targeted object [maf’ool bihi – the one to who something is being ‘done’ to] in the Ayah’s discussion and look at the location of the words surrounding it to see their relationship with that main object.

[Part of Balaaghah – rhetoric -finding out the reasons why words are sequenced in a certain order.*]

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33_24
( Suratal Ahzab 33:24)
That Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) may reward the truthful for their truth and punish the hypocrites if He wills or accept their repentance. Indeed, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) is ever Forgiving and Merciful.

Point #1:

See how; Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) mentions His Name near the Saadiqeen [truthful], yet He does not mention His Name near the hypocrites.
This is done because Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) is close to the Saadiqeen [truthful to themselves and truthful to Allahsubḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) – so He mentions His closeness to them by mentioning His Name next to them, and is angry with the hypocrites, so He does not mention His Name near the hypocrites [i.e. He is distant from them].

Point #2:

But to give hope to those who have hypocrisy in their hearts, He mentions that the hypocrite can still reach that closeness to Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He), and that can only be reached by approaching His Forgiveness and Mercy.
He pictures this by placing His Names of Mercy (Ghafoor & Raheem) next to the Name, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He), so the hypocrite will only get closer to Allah by approaching His Forgiveness & Mercy.
Point #1 is used many times in the Qur’an, sometimes in selected ayat/verses [like above], sometimes in whole Surahs i.e. in Surah Tariq, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) does not even mention His Name once in the whole Surah, due to His Anger and distance against the rejectors/disbelievers.

Sentence Tajweed Sound Gems

Look for:
– Sound (Onamatopeia) effects
– Visual effects (i.e. low note letters like Daad give a heavy/sluggish meaning)
– Flow of the ayah’s recital
– Other sounds produced through Tajweed sounds including how they impact the Tajweed sounds

Tajweed Sounds

If we study the arts of Tajweed, we see that there are some rules you have to learn to recite the Qur’an well.

Ikhfaa:

The Ikhfaa rule is commonly called ‘the nasal sound’ rule – wherein you don’t recite the letter ‘Nun’ (you don’t touch your tongue on the top roof of your inner mouth) before certain letters, but instead you almost touch it and the sound that comes out of your nose and mouth makes a nasal sound – causing the sound of the recitation to ‘flow’ instead of abrupt pauses (which would happen if you fully pronounced the letter ‘Nun’.)

This flow in recitation will give a ‘smooth’ feeling to the listener, as if you’re flying on air or floating over water. So that when the following ayah is recited, it is recited smoothly, as if you are gliding.

Quran 14_24

Have you not considered how Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) presents an example, [making] a good word like a good tree, whose root is firmly fixed and its branches [high] in the sky? [Quran 14:24]

Comparison: On the other hand, when we see the description being mentioned of a tree representing disbelief, we see there is no Ikhfaa rule applied, and we also hear difficult to pronounce letters (like Daad) being used. This means the letter ‘Nun’ and other difficult to pronounce letters will be pronounced a lot in this ayah, which causes abrupt STOPS in the flow of the Ayah. This continuous abrupt stopping in the recitation makes you feel ‘sluggish‘, as if you are continuously falling on your face – making you feel, through hearing the recitation, that disbelief is continuously heavy and hard upon you.

14_26

And the example of a bad word is like a bad tree, uprooted from the surface of the earth, not having any stability. [Quran 14:26]

Step 3 – The Location of an Ayah within a Passage of Discussion

Ruku’: Shaykh Abdul Nasir Jangda says that the Rukoo’aat (sub sections within a surah) you find in copies of the Qur’an are divided by scholars based on the different subjects within a Surah. So take advantage of these when studying different passages within surahs’ of the Qur’an.

The location of an Ayah may be based on:

i – the context of the whole passage (Ruku’)
ii – Or even based on the theme of the entire Surah

Example:
6_151
And kill not your children out of poverty, We provide you and them.
(An’am 6:151)

17_31
And kill not your children for fear [of] poverty. We provide them and you. (Israa’ 17:31)

It seems like the same thing but it’s not.
In Surah al An’am, it is describing when poverty already exists. Who are you worried about feeding in that moment the most? Yourself. So Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) tells us that He will provide for YOU and them.

In Surah al Isra’, there is a future fear of poverty being depicted. People may be able to feed themselves, but they fear for the providing of their children.

So Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) mentions that He will Provide for THEM [the children], since that is the person’s main worry.

The Location of an Ayah and its content is important.

The following examples will explain how.

i – Surah al Baqarah has 286 ayat within it, and tells us how to be the best nation. If we divide that (286) by two, we get the number 143.

The exact MIDDLE ayah of Surat al Baqarah is 2:143. And in that ayah, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) tells us:

2_143

And like that, We have made you a MIDDLE (wasaTan) nation…

ii – Surah al Haqqah – Order of words gradually going upwards in location:

i.e. (1) Earth > (2) mountains > (3) sky > (4) > angels, (5) > Throne (‘Arsh), (6) – Our Lord Allah (see Haqqah 69: 13-16)

69_13

69_14

 

69_15

69_16

Then when the Horn is blown with one blast. And the (1) earth and the (2) mountains are lifted and leveled with one blow, then on that Day, the Resurrection will occur

And the (3) heaven/sky will split [open], for that Day it is infirm.

And the (4) angels are at its edges. And there will bear the (5) Throne of your (6) Lord above them, that Day, eight [of them (i.e. angels)].

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Gibran

    June 19, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh

    JazzakAllahu khair

  2. Avatar

    LinguisticMiracle.com

    July 9, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    Asalaamu alaykum.

    Jazakum Allahu khayran for posting this :)

    Please download the full book:

    Quran – the Linguistic Miracle, from our site (LinguisticMiracle.com).

    Baarak Allahu feekum.

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30 Khawaatir in 30 Days- A Parent’s Guide | Day 10: The Dua’ of Umm Salama

Now that we have learnt about a good word, let’s talk about the dua’ of Umm Salama.

Today I’m going to share with you a story of a very important woman in Islamic history named Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her). She was a female companion, which means she was a sahaabiya (female companion)

Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) was one of the first people to embrace Islam and she was one of the few Muslims who actually performed the hijrah twice. 

Question: Who can tell me what a hijrah is?

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A hijrah is when someone leaves a place they are in for the sake of Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He). The first hijrah was to Ethiopia, where a just Christian ruler named Najashi took in a group of Muslims and took good care of them. 

So Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) and Abu Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) went to Ethiopia. After some time living there, they really wanted to go back to Mecca so that they could be next to the Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) and learn everything about Islam. As they waited patiently, news traveled all the way to Africa saying that the Muslims were no longer getting persecuted because Umar ibn al-Khattab raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) and Hamza raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him), the uncle of the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him), had embraced Islam. 

Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) and Abu Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) decided to return back to Mecca, and when they did, they realized that it was only a rumor and that the Muslims were still being tortured by Quraysh. So, when the Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) instructed all of the Muslims of Mecca to leave to Madina for the second hijrah, they wasted no time getting ready. 

Question: Do you see how they were so active and didn’t take their Islam for granted?

As Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) was about to mount her camel, her tribe, the Banu Makhzum, came and told Abu Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) that they would not allow him to take Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) to Madina. Then Abu Salama’s tribe, the Banu Asad, takes Salama, his child, away.  Abu Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) could not defend himself against all of these men, so he sets off to Madina.

In just one day Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) lost her husband and her child, and she suffers so much because of it. She is in a lot of pain. After some time her cousin starts to feel sorry for her and speaks to the tribes on her behalf. He is then able to reunite her with her son. Then after a year of waiting, Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) is finally able to meet her husband in Madina. 

Abu Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) was known to be a very caring husband and courageous man. He fought in the Battle of Badr as well as in the Battle of Uhud. In Uhud, he received a wound that he wasn’t able to recover from. 

Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) was so sad the day Abu Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) died, but the Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) taught her to recite a beautiful dua’:

إِنَّا لله وإنا إليه راجعون اللهم أجرني في مصيبتي وأخلف لي خيرا منها 

“We belong to Allah and to Allah is our return. Oh Allah, reward me for my calamity, and replace my loss with something better.”

Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) recited this dua’, but in her mind she thought, “Who can be better than Abu Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him)?” 

After a few months passed, Umar ibn al-Khattab raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) proposed to Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her), but she said no. 

Then, Abu Bakr raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) proposed to Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her), but again she said no. 

Then, the Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) proposed to Umm Salama raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) and she accepted. So now, she was not only the mother of Salama, but the mother of all of the believers until the end of time! 

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30 Khawaatir in 30 Days- A Parent’s Guide | Day 9: A Good Word

Now that we have learnt about the life of this world, let’s talk about a good word.

I want you all to close your eyes and think of a beautiful tree. 

Question: Who can tell me what their tree looks like? Is the tree big and strong? Does it have lots of branches and leaves? Does it have fruit?

Now, I want you to think of a time when someone said something really nice to you.

Question:  What are some of the nice statements you remember people telling you?

Question: How did those statements make you feel?

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Yes, they fill us up with a warm feeling. We may have felt proud of ourselves and we may have felt loved. Do you know that Allah [wt] describes a good word to a good tree? 

In Surah Ibrahim, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) says:

أَلَمْ تَرَ كَيْفَ ضَرَبَ اللَّهُ مَثَلًا كَلِمَةً طَيِّبَةً كَشَجَرَةٍ طَيِّبَةٍ أَصْلُهَا ثَابِتٌ وَفَرْعُهَا فِي السَّمَاءِ 

تُؤْتِي أُكُلَهَا كُلَّ حِينٍ بِإِذْنِ رَبِّهَا ۗ وَيَضْرِبُ اللَّهُ الْأَمْثَالَ لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَذَكَّرُونَ 

Have you not considered how Allah presents an example, [making] a good word like a good tree, whose root is firmly fixed and its branches [high] in the sky? [Surah Ibrahim; 24]

It produces its fruit all the time, by permission of its Lord. And Allah presents examples for the people that perhaps they will be reminded. [Surah Ibrahim; 25]

Question: Now, I want you to think of a time when someone said something mean to you. How did that make you feel?

It’s not fun to remember the mean stuff right? Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) continues in Surah Ibrahim and says:

وَمَثَلُ كَلِمَةٍ خَبِيثَةٍ كَشَجَرَةٍ خَبِيثَةٍ اجْتُثَّتْ مِن فَوْقِ الْأَرْضِ مَا لَهَا مِن قَرَارٍ

And the example of a bad word is like a bad tree, uprooted from the surface of the earth, not having any stability. [Surah Ibrahim; 26] 

Question: What do you think are good words we can use to build strong, firmly rooted trees?

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30 Khawaatir in 30 Days- A Parent’s Guide | Day 8: The Life of This World

Now that we have learnt about qalbun saleem, let’s talk about the life of this world.

Question: Do you know that there is an ayah in the Qur’an that takes us through all the stages of life and tells us what we find to be the most important aspect based on our age?

This ayah is found in the chapter named Al-Hadeed. 

Question: Does anyone know what Hadeed means? 

Yes! It means iron! The verse in Surah al-Hadeed starts by saying:

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اعْلَمُوا أَنَّمَا الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا لَعِبٌ وَلَهْوٌ 

“Know that the life of this world is play and amusement.”

Question: When you were really, really young, what was something that was important to you?

Yes, playing! You would use your imagination, play with your toys, and build legos. That is what  لَعِبٌ la’bun means. Then you got a bit older and you wanted to hear stories and be entertained. 

Question: Can you tell me in what other ways you’re entertained? (Examples can include watching TV, reading books, etc)

Yes! This is what is meant by  لَهْوٌ l(ahwun). Then we get a bit older and our goals change. The ayah continues by saying, وَزِينَةٌ وَتَفَاخُرٌ بَيْنَكُمْ (wa zeenatun wa tafakhirun baynakum). All of a sudden, you become a tween and a teenager, and you really care about your looks. You want to dress in the nicest clothing and look beautiful. This is zeena

Then you get even older and you enter college. You compete with your classmates and show off your knowledge and skills to impress future employees. This is tafaakhirun baynakum , i.e. boasting with one another. 

Then what usually happens after college? Work, marriage, and children! The ayah continues by saying, وَتَكَاثُرٌ فِي الْأَمْوَالِ وَالْأَوْلَادِ (wa takathur fil amwaali wal-awlaad), i.e. and competition in increasing wealth and children.

As parents, we try to give you the best life and education, and we work hard to provide for you. But, we always have to remember that it won’t be permanent, right? 

Question: We will be so happy, like farmers watching our seeds grow into beautiful plants, but what happens in the fall when it’s no longer sunny and becomes windy and cold? 

Yes, the plants turn yellow. Remember that toy you used to love playing with as a really little kid? Is it as interesting to you anymore? Remember that TV show you could not stop watching? You even memorized all the lines in it. Do you remember the title? Are you interested in something else now?

This is the example of our whole life. Once we get something we once were so excited to have, we realize that after some time has passed, that it has “turned yellow” to us. 

Question: What do you think that means?

Yes! It’s not as interesting as it once was. So knowing that this is going to happen, how can we make sure to not get distracted by the bright and shiny and stay focused on Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He)?

We’re in luck, because Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) gives us the answer! Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) says:

 “سَابِقُوا إِلَىٰ مَغْفِرَةٍ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ وَجَنَّةٍ 

Race toward forgiveness from your Lord and Jannah! 

Question: How do you think we can race towards Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He)?

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