Whenever we recite or study the Qur’ān, it is important to do so with the utmost respect and while maintaining proper etiquette and decorum. Allah (Exalted and Sublime is He) states in the Qur’ān: “Whoever honours the symbols of Allah, it is indeed from the piety of the hearts.” (22:32)
Hereunder are some important etiquettes related to reciting the Qur’ān:
Reciting the Qur’ān is a very important and virtuous act of worship. Hence, when reciting the Qur’ān or studying it, we must do so solely for the pleasure of Allah (Mighty and Majestic is He). We must ensure that it is not done to please others, to show off or to receive any kind of worldly benefit. Allah (Exalted and Sublime is He) has emphasised in the Qur’ān the importance of worshipping Him with sincerity. (18:110)
2) Pondering Over the Meanings of the Qur’ān
We should contemplate over the meanings of the Qur’ān. This can be achieved by attending the lectures of reliable scholars on tafsīr (Qur’ānic exegesis). One may also avail themselves of a reliable written tafsīr (such as Ma‘ārif al-Qur’ān by Muftī Muḥammad Shafī‘ al-‘Uthmānī, Allāh have mercy on him) or a reliable translation of the Qur’ān (such as The Noble Quran by Muftī Muḥammad Taqī al-‘Uthmānī, Allāh preserve him).
3) Fulfilling the Rights of Reciting the Qur’ān
Allāh mentions: “Those to whom We have given the [Qur’ān as a revealed] Book – who recite it with its due recitation – it is these who [truly] believe in it.” (2:121) The noble companion ‘Abdullāh ibn Mas‘ūd (Allāh be well pleased with him) said: “The right of its recitation is to accept its ḥalāl as ḥalāl, its ḥarām as ḥarām and to recite it as it was revealed, without interpreting it incorrectly.” (Jāmi‘ al Bayān ‘an Ta’wīl Āy al-Qur’ān) Thus, an important right of the Qur’ān is that it be recited correctly, ensuring the rules of tajwīd are complied with and the letters are pronounced correctly.
4) Beautifying the Voice When Reciting
It has been reported from the noble companion, Barā’ ibn ‘Āzib (Allāh be well pleased with him), that the Prophet (Allāh bless him and grant him peace) said: “Beautify the Qur’ān with your voices.” (Sunan Abī Dāwūd)
Note: It is recommended to recite the Qur’ān with a melodious tune. However, it must not resemble singing.
5) Cleansing the Mouth with Miswāk Prior to Commencing Recitation
It is reported from the noble companion ‘Alī ibn Abī Ṭālib (Allāh be well pleased with him) that he said: “Indeed, your mouths are the means for [reciting] the Qur’ān, so cleanse them with the Siwāk.” (Sunan Ibn Mājah)
6) Wearing Clean Clothes and Being in a Respectful State
Imām Abu ‘l-‘Āliyah (Allāh have mercy on him) was a senior student of many of the prophetic companions (Allāh be well pleased with all of them). When he would sit to recite the Qur’ān, he would tie the ‘imāmah (turban), put on good clothes, wrap himself in a shawl and face the qiblah. (al-Jāmi‘ li Aḥkām al-Qur’ān)
May Allāh enable us to fulfil the rights of the Holy Qur’ān, to recite it correctly and to treat it with the utmost respect. Āmīn