How To Become An Exceptional Quran Hafidh In 5 Steps

There is someone who memorised one of the longest surahs of the Qur'ān while waiting at red traffic lights. That surah was Surah an-Nisā'. He memorised a verse from it every day while waiting for the traffic lights to turn green, and later he became an Imām at the gran mosque of Makkah (Masjid al-Harām).

Do you know who that was? It was Imām Sa'ūd al-Shuraim!

He memorised the Qur'ān during his last years at secondary school. He memorised by himself and it was only later on while at university that he engaged with teachers. He says, "Sometimes I memorised a whole half (hizb) in one day and other times I memorised a part of a page but the period for memorising did not exceed 6 months and it was the year 1404. Reading a lot the Qur’ān directly from the Mus'haf is among the biggest reasons to memorising it quickly and listening to it."

There's a saying in Arabic:

لا تتوقف عندما تتعب
بل توقف عندما تنتهي
Do not stop when you tire,
Rather, stop when you're done.

That's the definition of the discipline that many people that complete the memorisation of the Qur'ān display every single day. They will sit down, walk, or stand reciting the Qur'ān and the tiredness won't get to them. Rather, they will keep on going until they have complete what they set out to do for the session.

There are many of us that complain:

"I don't have any motivation, please motivate me!"

"I get tired, or distracted when sitting down to recite Qur'ān and I end up stopping completely."

There may well be many reasons behind this but discipline is what is required. The topic of days discussion is about the person who has attained the prestigious and honourable status of the Hāfiz, who recites the Qur'ān to his companions as if it were an open book, mastering its memorisation and recitation, and knows the location of each verse on the page, in which surah it appears, in which part, section, and chapter. This person, if asked to continue reciting from any verse, does not hesitate and knows the verses preceding it as well. The exceptional Hāfidh of the Qur'ān is someone who is deeply connected to the Qur'ān, so they sleep, wake, speak, pray and spend their days and nights with it.

The path to making Qur'ān memorisation solid and firm

The road to becoming an exceptional Qur'ān memoriser is being firm and steady in that one it necessitates consistent and dedicated effort. Education is essential, and experienced teachers or scholars can provide the necessary tools and techniques for effective memorisation (this is why I am here). Additionally, regular revision, repetition, and maintaining good mental and physical health can all help. Setting a specific schedules and goals, as well as holding oneself and a teacher or mentor accountable, can be beneficial. Finally, having a strong connection to the Qur'ān, as demonstrated by reading and comprehending its meaning, can help inspire and motivate one to persevere through the challenges of memorisation. This is why the Qur'ān is full of the stories of the prophets - we learn from them what it means to be disciplined and dedicated.

But there are 5 steps towards this.

Five steps that can help you achieve exceptional memorisation without missing a single verse

Memorisation of the Qur'ān, for the most part, doesn't require much from someone. It's focus, repetition and routine. Some people have memorised Surahs al-Mulk and as-Sajdah simply by reciting them every night before sleeping. Similarly, by reciting Surahs Yaseen, ar-Rahmān, or al-Wāqi'ah frequently, some people have memorised them. Some people have memorised Surah al-Kahf as a result of reciting it on Fridays on a regular basis. All of this is accomplished without even attempting to memorise these Surahs or having a plan to memorise them.

Achieving the dream of being an exceptional Qur'ān Hāfiz is not impossible, but it does require practical steps to be taken.

1. Sincere intention

The first and most important step is to have faith in Allāh and a sincere intention. Trust in Allāh and sincerity are essential components in memorising the Qur'ān and maintaining that memorisation over time. However, only a few people are able to truly fulfil these conditions with their hearts, words, and actions. It doesn't mean that if you don't, you can't memorise. You still can.

2. Persistent repetition

In order to become an exceptional Hāfiz, one must take practical steps and make repetition a habit. The first step is to begin with repeating a passage or a surah several times at the beginning, and then gradually increasing the number of repetitions over time (to hundreds). For example, when first memorising a page, one should repeat it around 100 times, but distributed over a few days. This repetition should become a constant, like a heartbeat, by practicing it regularly at home, in the car, on the street, before and after prayer, and in every place and situation.

One should make it a daily practice to recite and repeat what has been memorised so far, and set a specific schedule for it. This will help to solidify the memorisation and make it more entrenched in the mind. Furthermore, it's important to have a consistent and regular schedule for memorising and reviewing what has been memorised to be able to commit it permanently in the memory. Additionally, it's important to be patient with oneself and to not get discouraged if progress seems slow at times. Remember that this is a gradual process and it will take time and effort to achieve the goal of exceptional memorisation.

3. Connection to the Mus'haf

Another important step in is to have constant access to the physical Qur'ān or Mus'haf. Even if you have memorised a significant portion of the Qur'ān by heart, it's still important to continue referencing the physical copy. This can be done by allocating a substantial amount of time each day specifically for reading and reviewing the Qur'ān from the mus'haf.

An example of this can be seen in the example of the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) who gave priority to his daily recitation of the Qur'ān. The Prophet (ﷺ) once came late to his people and informed them that he had been reciting from the Qur'ān. It serves as a reminder that even someone as accomplished as the Prophet (ﷺ) still placed importance on consistent and regular reading of the Qur'ān from the physical book itself. This has further blessings.

Furthermore, reading the Qur'ān from the physical book is an important aspect as it helps one to gain a deeper understanding and connection to the Qur'ān, and its wording and context. It also helps in identifying any mistakes or confusion that one may have while memorising, thus it's an important step in ensuring the accuracy of one's memorisation and understanding.

4. Having patience

Another important step is being patient with the difficulties and challenges that come with the process of Qur'ān memorisation. These difficulties may include:

  • Slipping away from the memorisation and forgetting some of the verses.
  • Difficulty in distinguishing between similar verses or wordings.
  • Other obstacles that one may encounter along the way.

It's important to understand that there will be moments of struggle and setbacks, but one should remain patient and persistent. Achieving a strong and solid memorisation of the Qur'ān takes time, patience, and consistency. Without patience, it's difficult to maintain the momentum and follow through with the memorisation process.

Additionally, one should not be discouraged by difficulties and setbacks, but rather see them as opportunities to learn and grow. Continual follow-up and review is necessary to reinforce and solidify the memorisation. It's also important to seek guidance and support from teachers or mentors who can provide support and strategies for overcoming these challenges.

In short, the key to achieving exceptional Qur'ān memorisation is patience, persistence, and consistency. With these qualities and a commitment to continual follow-up and review, one can overcome any challenges that may arise and ultimately achieve their goal.

5. Not limiting yourself

The fifth and final step is not to impose limitations or restrictions on the memorisation process. One should not limit their memorisation to a specific time frame, or be preoccupied with completing the memorisation in a certain amount of time. Instead, the focus should be on perfecting the memorisation, no matter how long it takes.

One example of this is when you do not move on to the next page, section or chapter until they have repeated it multiple times, even if it takes a whole month to do so. This dedication and willingness to take the time to master the lesson is essential for achieving exceptional memorisation.

Another example is that there are those who memorise a page a day, but when they find difficulty in a particular verse, they adjust the amount of memorisation and focus on that verse until they have memorised it perfectly before moving forward. This willingness to adjust and adapt the memorisation process based on individual needs and challenges can help to ensure that the memorisation is as accurate and thorough as possible.

In summary, the key is to not impose strict time limitations, and to be willing to adjust the process and put in the time necessary to perfect the memorisation, no matter how long it takes.

With these five ingredients you can find success (and check out the other qualities).

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