This is a continuation of my previous post – how I fell in love with the Qur’an.
As time went on, I attended more circles of knowledge. They were a bit different from the ones I used to attend with my parents while I was much younger. We barely play or sing nasheeds in these new ones. It was basically about spiritual talks and moving closer to Allah.
Before each session, a short recitation or memorization of the Quran would take place and it used to be boring. Sometimes, I would stay back at home until like 30 minutes after the commencement of the program me so I’d miss out on the memorization. I had a friend close to my house who is an igbo girl -non-muslim- she loved music and I did too. So I’d go to her place and we’d play some tapes and listen up to them. Later on, she got a music book so we’d read from it after the musicians and sooner, we were little musicians of our own. We’d compete on who knew it better, me or her.
Meanwhile, something had all ways haunted me. While I was much younger, there was a girl at my Qur’an class, Khadijah, who was good at reciting the Qur’an. She was once asked to recite suratu-naba’ and the whole class went mute. It was so beautiful. still, I didn’t really see it as a big deal. But when khadijah got to the last verse, which is the longest I couldn’t help but watch her in wonder. She recited the whole of the verse in one breath and it was perfect! The ustadh commended her and in my heart, I admired her zeal, her charisma and most of all, her voice! Secretly, i would recite the last verse of suratul- naba’ just the way she did. It took me time to get it right but in the end, i did! It made me feel good.
Even after that, I always felt that the beautiful recitation of the Qur’an is not a female’s thing. I loved it when brothers recited the Qur’an like sudais or mathrud but I still didnt feel the need to practice hard to be like them. But I had a great challenge, salah, which was what really brought about my love for the Qur’an.
My salah was missing out on something. Each time I prayed, I would recite a surah from the beginning and branch into another when I get half way. I was mixing up surahs badly. It was sooo bad that there were times I wouldnt even make it to the end of a surah before going to ruku. I had memorized juuz ‘ama but I didn’t know it all the same. I never practiced on my own or memorize a surah at leisure. However, this challenge really got me. I started feeling bad.
Sometimes, I would try to listen to tapes at home or observe my salah with short surahs but I still felt like a jerk. Like an incomplete muslim. Then one day, i heard of an hadith that says that whoever memorizes the Qur’an and forgets it would be purnished by Allah. I got scared then.
When I got into the university, I met new people. I had a friend who was much younger than me but was memorizing the Qur’an. He would always ask me to join an hifdh class at the school masjid and offer to help me memorize new suwar. I read books too. My intereest got fueled gradually. I started debating on joining a class.
During a session break, I tràvelled to my uncle’s place in the eastern part of the country. He always had a book in hand for me to read. He gave me a book on funerals one day and I took my time read it. While i was reading, I stumbled on lots of hadith about memorization of the Qur’an and how it would help elevate the status of a Muslim on the day of judgement. I enjoyed the book. The big chill came when i saw a story of how some sahabahs who died on a battlefield were to be buried. The rasul instructed that those who had memorized the Qur’an completely should be bûried first, as the grave for their mass burial wasnt big enough. I stopped and reflected on it. That story was a pointer. A lesson. A message. I felt so different after reading it. It was more like the rasul was telling me to ensure i memorize the Qur’an inorder to become more bèloved to him. To become a better muslim.
That year I moved closer to the Qur’an. I read the translation very often and the footnotes which contained stôries and tafsîrs even more often. I had foûnd a new love. When I got back to school I read some articlès from Sisters magazine about sisters from different parts of the world struggling to memorize the Qur’an. I cried so hard. I read a story, then another, then more. it was so incredible! Then i started making more efforts. I had jôined an hifdh class and the articles gave me a push, a reason to never stop.
I held on to a verse in suratul- Qamar verse 17 where Allah said: And we have indeed made the Qur’an easy to understand and remember; then is there any who will remember (or receive admonition). Till date, I am a huge lover of the Qur’an and i wish to in sha Allah take an exclusive memorization class some day soon. I know Allah would help me get better, and my dream would come true soon. Did i mention that i want my jids to leatn the Qur’an from my laps? Well, that’s my dream too. Please keep me in your duaa.
While i’m yet to get the chance of being an haafidhah, I memorize in bits and the following are what have helped.
Give up music(nasheeds with beats inclusive).
Make lots of duaà.
Mingle with people who have memorized the Qur’an for motivation or inspiration.
Engage in lots of good acts.
ay Allah make us all lovers of the Qur an. Ameen