The second step in this spiritual journey is to learn the correct recitation and articulation of the Quran. The second condition (after a sincere intention) for any deed to be accepted by Allah is that it should done according to the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah sallalahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Someone who wants to memorize the Book of Allah must learn it from those who are knowledgeable; and it is never sufficient for him to rely on his own self.
This is one of the most amazingly unique aspects of the Quran- there has always been a one-on-one student-teacher interaction with regards to studying it.Jibreel ‘alayhisalam taught it to the Messenger of Allah sallalahu ‘alayhi wa sallam who in turn taught it to his companions radhiallahu ‘anhum ajma’een (may Allah be pleased with them all), and that’s how its reached us: pristine, complete, unchanged, unaltered and unadulterated.
There are various steps to take to learn the correct recitation of the Quran:
1- Use the same copy of the Quran- this will help you to get accustomed to the text, the number of verses per line, and it’ll keep your comments and corrections organized (use a pencil and mark your mistakes!); it also helps to use highlighters and sticky notes
2- Find a teacher- somebody who is well-versed in Tajweed and can accurately point out your mistakes. Its best to recite the Quran to a teacher before starting to memorize so that he/she may correct any mispronunciation. Begin to learn the basic rules of Tajweed.
3- Repeat the verses- repeating the same page at least ten times will help you to grasp a stronger hold of the difficult letters such as the Qaaf (القاف) and Raa’ (الراء). Bishr bin as-Sirri said, “Verily, each verse is like a date: the more you chew it, the more of its sweetness is released.” Abu Sulayman heard this and commented: “True. It is the case with one of you that if he begins one chapter of it, he wants to read it to the end.”
4- Use your senses- listening to an audio recitation of the Quran by a skilled reciter while reading the verses from your mus-haf (copy of the Quran) is extremely beneficial
5- Write it down- write down the verses that you find most difficult to recite; that will help you concentrate on each word separately, and this has been the way of the students of knowledge
Lastly, don’t give up! The Messenger of Allah sallalahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:
.عن عائشة عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قال: مثل الذي يقرأ القرآن وهو حافظ له مع السفرة الكرام البررة ومثل الذي يقرأ وهو يتعاهده وهو عليه شديد فله أجران
“The example of the one who recites the Quran and is fluent it is as if he is with the noble pious angels, and the example of the one who recites the Quran and stammers in it has two rewards as it is difficult for him.”
Remember to renew your intention every single time you begin reciting so that you may relish the beauty of wandering in the gardens of the remembrance of Allah.
‘Uthman bin ‘Affan said, “If our hearts were truly pure, we would never get enough of the Words of our Lord, and I hate that one day passes with me not looking in the Quran.”
-The Sahara Bloggers (Umm Saifullah)