Shaykh Nazhim al-Haqqani (q.s.) on Why Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) Took 23 Years to Digest the Qur'an

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Shaykh Muhammad Nazhim al-Haqqani (q.s.) said, “Why did it take 23 years for the best of Creation to learn the Qur’an?  After all, Allah (s.w.t.) has the Power to Bestow that knowledge and understanding in an instant.  In the same vein, why do we eat a few small meals daily?  Why not eat a hundred tonnes of food at one go?  It is because we need time to digest small amounts of food at a time, so as to yield energy.  Similarly, we need time to digest small amounts of knowledge at a time, in order to yield understanding.  The Prophet (s.a.w.) himself, under the Tutelage of Allah (s.w.t.), took 23 years to gradually digest the entire Qur’an.  The yield was a comprehensive understanding of the Qur’an.  How can any of us hope to reach even a minute understanding, without patience and guidance?  It is only the foolhardy who try to rush through this journey without a guide.

It is impossible to digest a hundred tonnes of food at one go.  We must be patient and follow a heavenly guide.  We need to digest knowledge so that understanding will grow within us.  For the patient, Allah (s.w.t.) will Bless us with heavenly lights in our soul, and each time we advance in understanding, more light will be given to us.  Each time we reach a new horizon, a new one emerges.  We can see these lights on the faces of those Endowed with deep understanding.  We should not seek a long life simply to eat and drink, for that is for animals.  We seek a long life so as to advance in understanding, for each level that we climb, Allah (s.w.t.) will Open a new ocean of light and honour for us.  It is sad that people of this generation are merely dreamers.  They do not take their religion seriously.  They think they can understand Islam without a guide.”


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