I was a slow learner when it comes to Quran.
I knew the hijaiyah letters but I did not know how to read a full arabic sentence. For example: بِسْمِ اللهِ
Instead of reading it as bis-mil-lah, I would read it as, bi-sa-mi-a-la-la-hi.
I did not know the function of sukun. Believe it or not, I had only started to properly learn how read the Quran with basic tajwid at the age of 16. I recalled being the only one in the madrasah class who did not know how to read. I also recalled my teacher, who would shake her head in disappointment whenever I read the iqra book 6. (IQRA is a beginner book to read the Quran. It is divided into six books according to level of difficulty) Whilst my classmate were reading iqra book 6, i was told to read iqra book 1 or 2. I was 12, i felt embarrassed, belittled and yet I did not bother to learn.
My ignorance continued till I was 15.
What sparked my interest and determination to read the Quran was watching my elder siblings. My eldest brother was gifted with the ability to recite the Quran well since young. On the other hand, my sister had enrolled herself in a tajwid class for two years after her thanawi, and every few days I would watch her read the quran or read her Qiraat book 1/2/3 to practice her tajwid from afar. Something moved in me. I wanted to be that person who is able to read Quran. I also wanted to be in the tajwid class, except, how do I do that if I was not able to read the Quran?
I was afraid to open the Quran.
I spent few weeks, or months watching my sister reading Quran before her tajwid lesson starts. Feeling inspired, I started reading my Iqra book 6 almost everyday, on my own, after maghrib or at least once a day. I did felt abit shy with my family at start. I mean, who wouldnt be shocked? I spent 15 years not wanting to learn how to read the quran and there I was reading an Iqra book?
My determination was at the brink. It was so high, that I went from Iqra book 6 and then Qiraat book 1 and I finally opened the Kalamullah! I spend months reading the Quran, feeling unsure if I recited it correctly, but I choose to believe that be it correct or wrong, at least I was making effort to read everyday and to learn on my own.
I recalled my sister teaching me some basic tajwid, and from then onwards, for the next two years, i was trying to gain confidence in my reading.
I joined tajwid class for two years (Sijil Pengajian Tajwid)
At 18, I thought being able to read with tajwid suffices my Quranic Journey, but little did I know Quranic knowledge is actually vast. Through this tajwid class, I had learned that it is equally important to also recognize tajwid before learning how to read with tajwid. Also, the reason why reading with tajwid is important:
- Keeps a person away from reciting the Quran wrongly
- Allow a person to love and gain interest in reading Quran
- Allow a person to gain confidence in reading Quran correctly
- Achieve happiness dunya & akhirah, insya’Allah
“The best among you (Muslims) are those who learn the Qur’an and teach it.” (Sahih Bukhari)
“Or add to it, and recite the Qur’an with measured recitation.” – Surah Muzzammil , Verse 4
I graduated at 20 and here is a picture of me in my Graduation Robe!
(Sorry I am not comfortable showing my face)
Quranic journey doesn’t stop anywhere, it continues.
The more you learn, the more you realize there are a lot more that you can learn about the Quran! If you feel frustrated about not getting your recitation right, and you feel like giving up, tell yourself, there is no such thing as ‘give up’ when it comes to reading the book of Allah. 🙂
Today, I am currently attending Quran Clinic weekly for 20 mins private lesson with an Ustazah who I am extremely indebted. May Allah bless her in all ways for the effort to teach me. She is nice and extremely patient with me whenever I made mistakes in my reading. She will be guiding me through my completion of reading the quran. Yes, I have not qatam yet. It has been almost two years and I am still currently in my 7th Juzuk. I read very slowly and my recitation is still not that great but to be able to know that I have come this far, is subhanAllah. No other words could describe how I am extremely thankful to Allah s.w.t for opening up my heart and allowing me to be a student of Quran.
May Allah protects all of us always and guides us to be amongst those who loves to read, memorize and practice the Quran. Amin 🙂
P/S: Just sharing you my Quran journey to light up your motivation. It takes time, effort, realization and likewise any of you who only just starting out, I was in your position and I started from zero too.