Ustadh Nouman Ali Khan
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I would like to share with you a small reflection on a very beautiful passage of Surah Al-Isra, in which Allah (swt) talks about the value of the Quran and the institution that helps us experience the Quran. One thing is to learn the language of the Quran. Another is to study its Tafseer, recite it, and memorize it. The Quran is experienced in Salah itself.
“Perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat) from mid-day till the darkness of the night (i.e. the Zuhr, Asr, Maghrib and Isha prayers) and recite the Quran in the early dawn (i.e. the morning prayer). Verily, the recitation of the Quran in the early dawn is ever witnessed (attended by the angels in charge of mankind of the day and the night).” (Al-Isra 17:78)
So establish the Salah from the time the sun starts getting “loose” and it starts sinking, meaning around Maghrib time. You know one should strive to pray the Maghrib Salah exactly on time, not when the sun is completely gone, and it is the depth of the night. Allah (swt) ordained us to establish the prayer at Maghrib and establish the prayer at Isha, when it is dark at night. However, when it came to Fajr, He (swt) did not even call it Salat Al-Fajr – He (swt) called it Quran Al-Fajr or “The Quran of Fajr”.
Hence, we should recite extra Quran at Fajr. But there is something special about me as a person, me as a Muslim developing a relation with the Quran, especially at Fajr. So the advice I give to myself and the same I share with you all is: try to make Fajr an institution in your life. Set some time aside for making a good Fajr Salah. Young men reading this, go make your Fajr Salah at the Masjid. When you do go to the Masjid, sit there and recite the Quran a little bit. If you dedicate that time to worshipping Allah (swt) and make the best of that time, then in your life you will notice a remarkable change – you will receive both spiritual and worldly benefits from your Lord soon, Insha’Allah.
Allah (swt) says: “Verily, the recitation of the Quran in the early dawn is ever witnessed.” He (swt) declares that the Quran of Fajr (in the same verse), no doubt about it, is witnessed. It is such a beautiful thing to say. The word Mashooda means ‘that which is witnessed’. Now, the question is who witnesses our actions at that time?
Fajr time is that hour of the day when most of the people are asleep. Therefore, even if somebody is walking to the prayer area or driving to the prayer area, nobody sees them. Usually, the things that are witnessed are in middle of the day: popular acts, popular places. However, a Masjid is not a popular place and Salah is not a popular act at Fajr time – not for most of us. People are mainly asleep or in heedlessness. But the angels are recording our deeds and the Almighty Allah (swt) Himself is making a note of the slaves abandoning their slumber and coming for Him and His Word. Subhan’Allah!
Thereby, this is a very powerful thing. Try to implement this advice. Make a good habit of going to sleep early, which is easy to say and so hard to do… I know! We always have things piled up and we start getting around to them in the evening. Of course, Shaitan gets a little over-active in the evening too, and, hence, our distraction comes. You know you are sitting and watching videos late in the night, being aware that you will not be able to wake up for Fajr. But you are doing everything late night and your Fajr is kind of getting out of the way! You are half-asleep, you pray a couple of Rakahs, and sometimes you even do not know what you have prayed! You know you did your Wudhu half-asleep and you performed your prayer half-asleep! Moreover, you go about your day with the delusion that you were amongst those who woke up for Fajr.
We need to abide by the rule that Allah (swt) has made the night for us to rest and the day to work. We ought to inculcate this habit in our life of going to sleep early and thus, waking up early. Only then, we can give the “Quran of Fajr” its due right!
Therefore, I pray that we all are able to take advantage of that time. Once you make a habit of this and you try to implement even a little bit, you will soon start seeing its benefits, Insha’Allah! You are going to notice your mood is different, your days are different, what you can accomplish is different, and the Barakah in your time is different. I can guarantee you a fruitful experience since I have experienced this personally in my life.
Transcription courtesy www.NAKCollection.com
Fajr Time at Wael Ibrahim’s Home!
Our house turns into a war zone. And in Hong Kong, houses are pretty small – about the size of one room of a bungalow in Karachi. We set alarms all around. One goes off followed by the next one. The idea is to keep the clocks out of reach and ringing perpetually at intervals. No one misses Fajr, believe me.
Adapted from a workshop titled ‘Intent Action” organized by Connect Institute