by Ashley Marshall
You’re in the car, laughing and chatting with your friends, just cruising down the clear freeway, when the radio station starts playing your favorite song. You all start singing word for word, hitting all the high notes with your best karaoke skills.
How many moments like these can we remember? How many of our “all time favorite” songs have we sung, memorized and rocked out to, knowing and repeating every word from the beginning to the end?
The answer is countless. We’ve all sung along senselessly to those chart-toppers the radio refuses to stop playing. If we were asked to name all the songs we know off the top of our heads including artist, title, and a few chorus lines we could probably list several of them with ease. But if someone asked us to name various surahs (chapters) from Al-Quran and three ayats (verses) from each, how many of us would struggle to name even half the number of songs we know? And what would we say if that person who was asking us was none other than our beloved Prophet Muhammad ﷺ?
We can truly make far more beneficial use of all that memory space given to us by our One Creator. Not only are we squandering away valuable time listening to today’s music, but many of us are not even aware of the vulgarity in the music we listen to. All that’s needed is a nice beat with a catchy chorus to keep us hooked. So in essence we’re uttering empty words that creep into our daily lives, affect our hearts, and steer us away from what’s really important, the path of becoming better Muslim brothers and sisters. It may seem like only a few minutes of our lives in passing but imagine if we listened to just two four-minute songs everyday for a week straight. That’s about an hour per week that we’ve lost which we could spend at a weekly Qur’an study. And this is just two songs a day!
So take this time right now to benefit yourselves, make the Qur’an the true chorus to your soul. Our time in this life is limited and we never know when it will come to an end. None of us are truly ready for death, but we can all make the effort to prepare for it and the hereafter. Jaabir radi Allahu `anhu (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: “I heard the Prophet ﷺ saying: “Every slave will be resurrected in the state upon which he died” [Muslim]. Do we really want to leave this world and return to stand forth Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala—exalted is He— with “Rah Rah Rah” stuck in our hearts?
The benefits of learning and listening to the Qur’an are far greater than anything we could possibly gain from music in this life. Aisha radi Allahu `anha (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated that our Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said,
“Verily the one who recites the Qur’an beautifully, smoothly, and precisely, he will be in the company of the noble and obedient angels. And as for the one who recites with difficulty, stammering or stumbling through its verses, then he will have twice that reward,” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Talk about an incentive to learn! Not only will we be rewarded for reciting the beautiful words of Allah (swt) but we are rewarded for our struggle to gain knowledge and fill our hearts with Qur’an.
The years of our youth are the most valuable, so let us make the most of them by starting today. The next time you’re zoned out with your headphones in your ears, take them out and recite a surah (chapter of the Quran) or two. Read a couple hadiths (a report of the sayings or actions of the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ by his companions.), or just take the time out to say alhamdulillah (all praise is due to Allah). Remember that the smallest consistent actions are counted, so even if it’s only 5 minutes of your day that you set aside you will be making a difference in your life and benefitting yourself on the path to becoming a righteous young Muslim.