For those interested in the Seven Qira’aat, here’s a treat for you: Qari Suhaib Ahmed Meer Muhammadi’s recitation of ayah 9 of Surah Ibraheem in different qira’aat.
Listen and identify the differences. Enjoy! :)
Volume 3, Book 48, Number 823:
Narrated ‘Aisha (radiallaahu `anhaa):
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) heard a man (reciting Quran) in the Mosque, and he said, “May Allah bestow His Mercy upon him. No doubt, he made me remember such-and such Verses of such-and-such Sura which I dropped (from my memory).
Narrated Aisha (radiallaahu `anhaa): The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) performed the Tahajjud prayer in my house, and then he heard the voice of ‘Abbad who was praying in the Mosque, and said, “O ‘Aisha! Is this ‘Abbad’s voice?” I said, “Yes.” He said, “O Allah! Be merciful to ‘Abbad!”
It is said that ‘Abbad (radiallaahu`anhu) was known for his love of Quran and his beautiful recitation. And see how even the Prophet of Allah (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) is praising him and praying for him.
There are accounts of his life but I haven’t been able to identify the sources. Read up on him for true inspiration here.
Volume 3, Book 41, Number 593:
Narrated ‘Abdullah (radiallaahu `anhu):
I heard a man reciting a verse (of the Holy Qur’an) but I had heard the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) reciting it differently. So, I caught hold of the man by the hand and took him to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) who said, “Both of you are right.” Shu’ba, the sub-narrator said, “I think he said to them, “Don’t differ, for the nations before you differed and perished (because of their differences). “
The Qur’aan was revealed in one style at the beginning, but the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) kept asking Jibreel until he taught him seven styles, all of which were complete. The evidence for that is the hadeeth of Ibn ‘Abbaas who narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
Jibreel taught me one style and I reviewed it until he taught me more, and I kept asking him for more and he gave me more until finally there were seven styles.
(narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3047; Muslim, 819)
What is meant by styles (ahruf, sing. harf)?
The best of the scholarly opinions concerning what is meant is that there are seven ways of reciting the Qur’aan, where the wording may differ but the meaning is the same; if there is a different meaning then it is by way of variations on a theme, not opposing and contradiction.
Bilal Philips writes that the Qur’an continued to be read according to the seven ahruf until midway through Caliph ‘Uthman’s rule when some confusion arose in the outlying provinces concerning the Qur’an’s recitation. Some Arab tribes had begun to boast about the superiority of their ahruf and a rivalry began to develop. At the same time, some new Muslims also began mixing the various forms of recitation out of ignorance. Caliph ‘Uthman decided to make official copies of the Qur’an according to the writing conventions of the Quraysh and send them along with the Qur’anic reciters to the major centres of Islam. This decision was approved by Sahaabah and all unofficial copies of the Qur’an were destroyed. Uthman burned the unofficial copies of the Quran. Following the distribution of the official copies, all the other ahruf were dropped and the Qur’an began to be read in only one harf. Thus, the Qur’an which is available throughout the world today is written and recited only according to the harf of Quraysh. [Taken from Wikipedia]
The Seven Recitations:
With regard to the seven recitations (al-qiraa’aat al-saba’), this number is not based on the Qur’aan and Sunnah, rather it is the ijtihaad of Ibn Mujaahid (may Allaah have mercy on him). People thought that al-ahruf al-saba’ (the seven styles) were al-qiraa’aat al-saba’ (the seven recitations) because they happened to be the same number. But this number may have come about coincidentally, or it may have been done deliberately by Ibn Mujaahid to match what was narrated about the number of styles (ahruf) being seven. Some people thought that the styles (ahruf) were the recitations, but this is a mistake. No such comment is known among the scholars. The seven recitations are one of the seven styles, and this is the style that ‘Uthmaan chose for all the Muslims.
Read more here.
Still confused? Go through this article as it explains the whole thing in very easy language. :)
Narrated Abu Salma:
I saw Abu Huraira reciting Idha-Sama’ un-Shaqqat and he prostrated during its recitation. I asked Abu Huraira, “Didn’t I see you prostrating?” Abu Huraira said, “Had I not seen the Prophet prostrating, I would not have prostrated.”
The ayah of Surah al-Inshiqaq where Abu Hurayrah prostrated:
“And when the Qur’an is recited to them, they fall not prostrate.” [Al-Inshiqaq 84: 21]
Narrated Ibn Umar:
When the Prophet recited a Sura that contained the prostration he would prostrate and we would do the same and some of us (because of the heavy rush) could not find a place for prostration.
Narrated Ibn ‘Umar,
When the Prophet recited Surat As-Sajda and we were with him, he would prostrate and we also would prostrate with him and some of us (because of the heavy rush) would not find a place (for our foreheads) to prostrate on.
‘Umar bin Al-Khattab recited Surat-an-Nahl on a Friday on the pulpit and when he reached the verse of Sajda he got down from the pulpit and prostrated and the people also prostrated. The next Friday ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab recited the same Sura and when he reached the verse of Sajda he said, “O people! When we recite the verses of Sajda (during the sermon) whoever prostrates does the right thing, yet it is no sin for the one who does not prostrate.” And ‘Umar did not prostrate (that day). Added Ibn ‘Umar “Allah has not made the prostration of recitation compulsory but if we wish we can do it.”
The ayah of Surah an-Nahl where Umar (RA) prostrated:
“They fear their Lord above them, and they do what they are commanded.” [An-Nahl 16: 50]
Volume 2, Book 19, Number 184:
Narrated Abu Rafi:
I offered the ‘Isha’ prayer behind Abu Huraira and he recited Idhas-Sama’ Un-Shaqqat, and prostrated. I said, “What is this?” Abu Huraira said, “I prostrated behind Abu-l-Qasim and I will do the same till I meet him.”
Narrated Ibn ‘Umar.
Whenever the Prophet recited the Sura which contained the prostration of recitation he used to prostrate and then, we, too, would prostrate and some of us did not find a place for prostration.
Narrated ‘Abdullah bin Masud:
The Prophet recited Surat-an-Najm (53) and prostrated while reciting it and all the people prostrated and a man amongst the people took a handful of stones or earth and raised it to his face and said, “This is sufficient for me.” Later on I saw him killed as a non-believer.
Hadith covered before, here.
Narrated Ibn Abbas:
The Prophet (SAW) prostrated while reciting An-Najm and with him prostrated the Muslims, the pagans, the jinns, and all human beings.
The ayah of Surah an-Najm where Sajdah of Tilawat was performed:
“So fall you down in prostration to Allah and worship Him (Alone).” [An-Najm: 62]
Narrated ‘Ata’ bin Yasar:
I asked Zaid bin Thabit about prostration on which he said that he had recited An-Najm before the Prophet, yet he (the Prophet) had not performed a prostration.
Narrated Zaid bin Thabit:
I recited An-Najm before the Prophet, yet he did not perform a prostration.
Note that in the above two Ahadith, Zayd ibn Thabit is reciting and Prophet (SAW) is listening. Hence, Prophet (SAW) did not prostrate (perform Sajdah of Tilawat). But in the Ahadith above these two, Prophet (SAW) was reciting it himself, and he did perform the sajdah.
We mentioned before that performing Sajdah of Tilawat is not mandatory.
Sujood al-tilaawah, whether during prayer or outside of it, is Sunnah, not obligatory, because evidence to that effect was narrated from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), in the hadeeth of Zayd ibn Thaabit and in the hadeeth of ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him).
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