The Prophet took 23 years to digest the Qur’an

Summary of Maulana Shaykh Nazim’s Daily Suhbah

7thFebruary 2010, Sunday

The Prophet took 23 years to digest the Qur’an

A’uzubillah himinsh shaitan nirrajeem

Bismillahir Rahman-nir Raheem

Assalamu’alaikum wrh wbkt

  • Man is distinguished from animals, by his faculty of understanding. Man has the capacity to advance in understanding, to delve deeper and deeper into the mysterious spiritual realms approaching the Divine, a gift that no animal possesses. Yet when Man lives in this world without understanding his mission, destination and purpose, he is at the level of animals, for they too are creatures without understanding.
  • It is this Divine gift of understanding, that makes humans the highest of creation, so strive to understand more and more, for the Prophet (saw) said, “Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave.” Seeking knowledge is the door to the treasures of understanding, and understanding is the door to spiritual elevation and honour, without which, we simply stagnate at the level of animals.
  • So we must be in a constant state of seeking knowledge and understanding, there is no limit to how much a Man may understand. Each new level that you climb to is a new horizon with endless honours, stations, enlightenment and power. And this is only achieved by those who seek and strive for knowledge. The Prophet (saw) himself was taught to pray, “Oh Allah, bestow upon me, knowledge!” The greater your knowledge about Allah, the greater your honour!
  • Unfortunately, today, despite studying, many Muslims are devoid of understanding. Why? They seek knowledge, but they belittle the Prophet (saw), rejecting that he is the Door to understanding, the Door to Allah. They say that the Prophet (saw) merely brought the knowledge, and now that he is dead, he is no longer a part of the equation. After all, the Qur’an is already with us, they say, why would we need to keep honouring the Prophet (saw)? These are the followers of shaitan, they are sorely mistaken if they think they can understand the Qur’an, without Rasulullah (saw).
  • If the Prophet (saw) had no importance in the teaching of religion, Allah could have brought the Qur’an down at a Holy Site, and said to Mankind, “This book contains the final message for Mankind! Read it and understand it!” and that would have been sufficient for Man to read, to practice and to save himself. But Allah sent the final message via the Final Messenger (saw), so we must acknowledge the role that Rasulullah (saw) plays. A person may read the Qur’an, but the understanding contained within it can only be understood, via Rasulullah (saw).
  • The Prophet (saw) was taught the Qur’an by Allah, and the Prophet (saw) then taught the Qur’an to the Ummah. How is it that some Muslims have the gall to discard the Prophet (saw), and to belittle his position as the One who was taught by the Most Gracious?

(Allah) Most Gracious! It is He Who has taught the Qur’an. (Quran 55:1-2)

  • Without Rasulullah (saw), we will understand nothing!
  • For a period of 23 years, Allah taught Rasulullah (saw) the knowledge of the Qur’an. Rasulullah (saw) was given, in stages, the understanding of the Holy Qur’an. Why did it take 23 years for the best of creation to learn the Qur’an? After all, Allah has the power to bestow that knowledge and understanding in an instant! Maulana asks, why do we eat a few small meals daily, why not eat a hundred tonnes of food at one go? It is because we need time to digest small amounts of food at a time, so as to yield energy. Similarly, we need time to digest small amounts of knowledge at a time, in order to yield understanding! The Prophet (saw) himself, under the tutelage of Allah Almighty, took 23 years to gradually digest the entire Qur’an, to yield a comprehensive understanding of the Qur’an. How can any of us hope to reach even a minute understanding, without patience and guidance? It is only a foolhardy one who tries to rush through this journey, without a guide!
  • Do not try to digest a hundred tonnes of food at one go – it is impossible. Be patient, follow a heavenly guide, and as you seek knowledge, understanding will grow within you, and Allah will bless you with heavenly lights in your soul, and each time you advance in understanding, more light will be given to you. Each time you reach a new horizon, a new one emerges! Maulana says that you can see these lights on the faces of those endowed with deep understanding. Do not seek a long life simply to eat and drink, for that is for animals. Seek a long life so as to advance in understanding, for each level that you climb, Allah will open a new ocean of light and honour for you. It is sad that people of this generation are merely dreamers, they do not take their religion seriously, they think they can understand Islam without a guide.
  • Allah says in a Hadees Qudsi, “I was a Hidden/Secret Treasure.” Who understood that secret? Allah says in the Qur’an,

And when thy Lord said unto the angels: Lo! I am about to place a Khalifa on the earth (Quran 2:30)

  • Maulana says that Allah mentioned Khalifa in a singular term in this Ayat, so the Chosen Representative referred to here, is Rasulullah (saw), the Beloved of Allah, who was the only One whom Allah taught the Qur’an to, and who was the only One given a glimpse into the Hidden Treasure. Allah is Ahadun Ahad, he is One and Unique, and there is only one Chosen Khalifa, never a second one.
  • Iblis thought that he was able to be that Chosen Khalifa, yet his understanding compared to Rasulullah’s (saw), is like that of a pinhead compared to an ocean! The recipient of the title of Khalifa had been chosen and bestowed by Allah before the creation was even created, it was not a station that could be achieved by effort – it was a Divine decree, that will stand eternally! But Iblis did not understand this – he was devoid of understanding.
  • So do not be like shaitan in rejecting Rasulullah (saw). Stop spreading this deviant belief, that one can understand the Qur’an by one’s self, without following Rasulullah (saw), and without a Divinely sent guide. So many doctors of Islam with PhDs, study Islam from non-Islamic Universities, from ordinary lecturers, and after writing a thick thesis on Islam, they believe that they have reached the pinnacle of knowledge. In reality, they, like iblis, are devoid of any knowledge or understanding. How pitiful.
  • The ocean of Islam is deep, to dive in without allegiance to the Prophet (saw), without following a guide who has taken this journey before, is fatal. You will sink into that ocean and you may never rise again. So never say that you can go it alone, no, say humbly, “Robbi zidni ilma – Oh My Lord, grant me increase in knowledge!”


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