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Sunday, May 03, 2015

When the Quran is recited listen and remain silent




When I heard the following statement made from the pulpit it shocked me and it appeared that something had to be said. Unfortunately, it has fallen to someone like me! Anyway, it was that statement that whenever the Quran is recited one should say Subhanullah/glorified be Allah (the Exalted).

Now the verse is very clear,

وإذا قرئ القرآن فاستمعوا له وأنصتوا لعلكم ترحمون

"When the Quran is recited, listen to it and remain silent so you are shown mercy." Quran Al-Araf 7:204.

Therefore, it was said that whenever the Quran is recited one should say Subhanullah.  This ayah is clearly against anyone saying anything! Imam Al-Tabari (may Allah show him mercy) said, "Be silent and listen so you understand His passages, ponder the admonishments, be silent in order to understand and reflect, and do not converse so you will not understand it."

Imam Al-Nasafi (may Allah show him mercy) said it is wajib/necessary to remain silent when the Quran is recited in the prayer and outside. Anyone who does not perform a wajib is sinful so the statement is not correct. 

The Asab Al-Nazul/reasons for revelation of this passage was because some companions used to talk in the prayer and greet each other (see Tafsir Ibn Kathir). 

However, this is not just for the prayer, it is in all situations. Though it is better to listen quietly to recordings than talk but it is permissible to listen to a recording and speak because its a sound of an echo, in terms of fiqh. But if a reciter is in ones presence, in the masjid, then they have to remain silent and listen.

It is common in Yemen and other regions that people recite the Quran and they say Allah. Yet the verse is clear, one should be silent. If you listen to people hear the Quran, when a famous reciter comes to town, they get overly excited without taking in any of the warnings that they hear. Partly because they do not understand it and get excited when the recite over emphasises some words longer than he should. It is very sad and going against the clear ayah of the Quran.

When the Quran is recited listen and be silent; the practice of the companions was to bow ones head in respect.

The real danger is when people say Subhanullah when they hear Pharaoh say, Inna rabbuk Al-Alla/I am your lofty Lord. Would you say Subhanullah then? No, you would not!

So heed this warning and ignore personalities who go against the clear verse of the Quran. If you do not know the meaning then find out the passage numbers and find out.

The final part of the verse is lalla tahamun/so that you are shown mercy. Lalla can be translated as perhaps but here is means according to Imam Al-Khatteb Al-Sharbini (may Allah show him mercy), "You are shown mercy by your Lord for following one of His commands." (p. 628)
Do you need anything else?

Please click here to see Sheikh Yusuf Al-Nabahani's (may Allah show him mercy) forty hadith about the Quran which includes a brief commentary. 

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