Saturday, October 14, 2006

Ramadan and the Quran

I found the following article in an email.



The Holy Quran


The sacred scripture of Islam and the true word of God as revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings be Upon Him - PBUH.)

Revelation of Holy Quran

The Holy Quran was first set on a preserved tablet, as Allah Almighty says in the Holy Book: "It is a Glorious Quran, on a well-preserved tablet" (Quran 85:22). Then it was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) by the angel Gabriel (PBUH) part by part through a period of 23 years. Each revelation of the Holy Quran was written down by the Prophet's scribes under his instruction and supervision. The current order and organization of the entire revelation of Holy Quran, divided into 114 chapters (surahs), was made by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) himself. Besides, the entire Quran was committed to memory by the Prophet and his companions (sahabah). The practice of memorizing the whole Quran continued throughout centuries till date. Nowadays, there are thousands of Muslims who know the whole Quran by heart. They are called "Huffaz."
The reasons for revealing the Quran piecemeal

To stabilize the heart of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
To ease the process of the revelation of the Quran to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
To graduate the process of legitimising the divine rules.
To ease the process of memorising and understanding the Quran.
Some parts of the Quran were revealed after some events.
To make easy the process of getting rid of past bad habits for those newly converted to Islam.

Number of Quranic Chapters and Verses

Quran Chapters

Holy Quran is divided into thirty equal chapters, which are called (juz') in Arabic.

There are 114 Surahs of varying length. The longest Surah is Al-Baqarah consisting of 286 verses and the shortest Surah is Al Kawthar consisting of only three verses. The whole Quran has 6236 verses containing 77,250 words.

The first five verses of Surat Al-Alaq , were the first verses ever revealed in the Quran. It reads: "Iqra bismi rabbikalla dhi khalaq. Khalaqal insana min alaq. Iqra wa rabtukal alrram. Alladhi 'allama bil qalam. 'Allamal insana malam ya?lam " which means, "Read in the name of your Lord who created, created man from a clot. Read, for your Lord is most Generous, Who teaches by means of the pen, teaches man what he does not know." (96: 1-5)

The last verse revealed was number (281) from Surat Al-Baqara which means " Guard yourselves against a day in which you will be brought back to Allah. Then every soul will be paid in full that which it has earned, and they will not be wronged" (2:281).

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