Thursday, May 8, 2014

A misunderstanding that prevents people from understanding the Quran

There is a very common misunderstanding that blocks people from understanding the Quran. It is the assumption that the Quran is a continuous reading.

We all know that the Quran was revealed over a period of 22 years. Five short ayas were revealed when Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was forty years old. Many months passed before the second revelation came and it is in a different sura. Afterwards revelations came when the Prophet (pbuh) needed guidance or inspiration. Each revelation has a different purpose and a different insight. And they came at irregular intervals.
But now we have the Quran as a Book and it feels natural to read it in sequence. You can open the Book and read from page 1 to page 15 in half an hour. When we re read like this we get confused because there is a different insight after every few lines.

You can overcome this difficulty by focusing on only one or two ayas and think about them. Pick ayas that appeal to you. Ask yourself “What is this aya telling me”? “How does this relate to my life”?, or “What is the benefit in this teaching”?. You may have to think like this for a long time. But in due course you will find answers to your questions and your understanding of life will grow.

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