The miracle of the Quran is something that we Muslim has lost, for most of us myself included we can no longer has the intellect to see the linguistic miracle of the Quran. We feel nothing when we hear the Quran being read. It is something foreign, often quoted to justify one’s point of view but rarely or almost never moves and touches our hearts.
When standing behind the Imam in prayer, we would most probably ask “when is he going to say Allah hu Akbar” instead “what surah is he reading.”
People who are connected to the Quran think differently. For many of us, our daily accomplishments are based on how many items we managed to cross out on our todo list. But for people who are connected to the Quran, it is about listening to the Quran.
I have the prilivaged to sit and discuss with someobody whom I think is connected to the Quran. The highlight of his day was standing in prayer and listening to the Imam reading the Quran.
I only discovered that he views the Quran differently from us, after an incident.
The Iman at his local mosque was a Hafiz, but the Iman had to shorten his Quran recitation during the Fajr prayer to allow for more time for religious lectures. This affected him so much that he even contemplated going to a different mosque.
I was intrigued and asked him why it affected him so much. It is a long discussion but for simplicity sake I’ll use some association so you can appreciate the message. If you are a fan of Korean Drama or Turkish serials, you’ll know how the producers are able to secure your loyalty with a cliffhanger.
Cliffhanger is basically a literary device that creates psychological triggers that compels your attention. What a cliffhanger does is create climax and suspense and then give a promise to your audience basically saying “I know something you don’t know but promise I’ll tell you if you keep watching.”
So what does this have to do with the Quran? The Quran contains the best cliffhangers of all time. You and I probably can’t really appreciate it, but for some people listening to the Quran creates a reaction, similar to somebody who is hooked on Drama Serial.
The popular belief about the Quran is that it is about do’s and don’ts or divine commands and prohibitions. Yet these do’s and don’ts only represent about 3% of the Quran, the remaining 97 % consists of ethics, morality and relationship with God. And a substantial part of these are told in the form of stories.
Modern science has discovered that good storytelling triggers the release of 3 kinds of hormones and they are, dopamine, oxytocin and endorphins.
What dopamine does is make you more focused, more motivated and remember something that you normally can’t. This is what some people are gifted with when it comes to the Quran, they wait with full anticipation for the next ayah.
So much so that these people would ask the Imam for the Surah or Ayah he is reading, They would then look it up and automatically connect it to things they are dealing with in their daily life. They would then connect the dots on how they should respond to particular challenges they are facing.
The effects of Oxytocin is it creates empathy, builds trust and creates a sense of belonging, these are just some of the positive effects of oxytocin but there are many more. But the most important of all is empathy.
Empathy transforms your social relationships because it gives you a more accurate and deeper understanding of issues and conflicts. Empathy is a key trait to becoming a better spouse, parent, teacher and friend.
In the field of counselling, showing empathetic understanding is usually more helpful to a person in distress than giving them advice. Dr. Carl Rogers, the founder of the Person-Centered Counselling Theory, did extensive research on using empathy in counselling. His research showed that empathy is a counsellor’s most powerful skill in bringing about growth in a patient, and lack of empathy actually makes the patient feel worse.
Endorphins are a miracle hormone, they take you from rock bottom to emotional high in a few seconds. Do you have that feeling that makes the back of your hair stand? Not out of fear but when you are emotionally touched.Endorphins eliminate anxiety, relieve pain and cause a heightened sense of well being and even euphoria. Simply put, it can transform you from being an emotional wreck, to a person with unwavering confidence.
I witnessed this time and time again someone with the weight of the world on their shoulders, depressed and can see no way out. Then their emotional state changes in an instant.
During the Pandemic a lot of people lost their jobs and don’t know what to do. Imagine that you are one of those people, full of anxiety and you went to pray Fajr, standing in prayer behind the imam, but lost in your own thoughts.
Suddenly, you hear the Imam read Surah Ad Dhuha and as if Allah was speaking to you, assuring you things are going to get better, and he is going to take care of everything. It automatically gives you peace of mind.
Imagine you are in the same situation but the Imam reads the same Surah but the difference is you don’t have a clue what it means. You have a firewall of ignorance that is blocking divine tranquility from entering your heart. All the benefits of hearing Allah speaks to you will be lost and incomprehensible like an encrypted message.
Therefore it is paramount, for you to understand the Quran in its own language. Just make the effort and once you show your determination and sincerity. You’ll be surprise of how Allah make it easy for you.
Shahfizal Musa is the Founder and Managing Editor of Halalop. He graduated with a Law degree from Thames Valley University London. He is an award-winning journalist covering topics such as human trafficking, Muslim research discoveries, and exceptional Muslims.
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