Connect to the Book(DW#746 )
Apr 27, 2020
Wishing you and your loved ones the blessings of the Holy Month of Ramadan. As always, we will turn our attention to verses of the Quran during this month. We will inshallah focus on a verse a day and reflect on how we can live the timeless wisdom of the Book in our modern lives.
In verse 57 of Chapter 10 (Sura Yunus/Jonah), Allah says:
O mankind! There has come unto you an advice from your Lord, and a cure for that which lies within breasts, and a guidance and a mercy for the believers. [Holy Quran 10:57]
The verse addresses all of mankind and alerts them to the four functions of the Holy Quran:
1) An advice – The word maw‘idhah is a reminder to do good, but it is a reminder which is gentle and full of loving care. An exhortation to do good which will benefit us. It is the kind of advice that touches hearts that are open and receptive. It is the kind of advice that can guide us towards excellence of thought and conduct and allow us to live up to our full potential as human beings.
2) A healing of our inner distress – There are so many thoughts and emotions that cause the human being distress and result in emotional turmoil. In Islamic spirituality, they are known as ‘diseases of the soul’. A disease of the soul stops us from connecting to the Divine, doing what is in our best interest and robs us of mental, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.
The verses of the Quran allow us to regain our perspective and remove spiritual toxins such as anger, jealousy, hypocrisy from our hearts.
3) A guidance – As Imam Ali (as) points out, No one will sit beside this Quran but that when he rises he will achieve one increase or one decrease – increase in his guidance or a decrease in his (spiritual) blindness . The Quran clearly delineates the path of Ehsan, excellence and guides us step by step on the path of our own enlightened self-interest and towards His Pleasure.
4) A mercy – The Merciful Lord sent the book of Mercy so that human beings need not wander in darkness and confusion and so that the path towards wellbeing here and success in the hereafter is crystal clear. To get this key, the blueprint to Allah forgiveness is a Bounty from Him, His Grace because It gives us the recipe for success which like any other success, has to be earned by ourselves.
These four functions and roles of the Quran beautifully lay out the blueprint for nurturing and training human beings towards their full potential.
It starts with an external reminder which is advice. Then it addresses the barriers within that stop us from heeding the advice (cure). Once our hearts our purified, we can continue the guided journey towards achieving our full potential (guidance) and mercy is the handholding on the journey as well as the eventual success on the path.
The goal is to nurture the human being such that he is worthy of being admitted to God’s presence when he returns to Him. That in essence is the role of the Quran.
So, let us befriend the Quran this month with the intention of making it our refuge throughout the year. As the Holy Prophet (saw) said: "When afflictions, like a dark and terrible night, invade you, seek refuge in the Qur’an. It is simultaneously full of preaching as well as being a remedy, a source of illumination and blessing all at the same time."
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