The grand night and the light of Qura'n

Ramadhan is a blessed and unique month because during this month Muslims all over the world observe fasting. It was in this month that the Holy Quran was revealed to Prophet (SAW) and this month is also special because in this month during the last ten nights, there is a night called Lailat al- Qadr which is better than one thousand months. The word Lail or Lailah means  night and Qadr means originally, measuring. But Lailat al- Qadr is also translated as meaning the night of grandeur or majesty. The angels and the inspiration (al-Ruh) descend in it by the permission of their Lord for every decree. Also this Night is spoken of as the Night in which   Quran was revealed. The Quran says that this night is better than the nights of a thousand months. This makes explicitly clear that there is something special and great about this Night. In Surah  Ad- Dukhan, Allah says , “ By the Quran that makes things clear. We sent this Quran down on a  blessed night. Verily, We are ever-warning. There (in that night) it is cleared every matter of occurrences.”  Allah speaks more clearly about this night in Surah, AL-Qadr   where He says:

“Lo! He revealed It on the Night of Power

Ah, What will convey thee what the Night of Power is!

The Night of Power is better than a thousand months

The Angels and Spirit descend therein, by the permission

Of their Lord, with all decrees

(That night is) Peace   until the rising of the dawn.”

Both the Surahas Ad-Dukhan and Al- Qadr   reveal that this night is very indispensable for all the Muslims because on this night angels tread down on the earth on the commandment of Allah and make note of their destiny. A Hadith narrated by Hazrat Annas bin Malik reveals about the descending of angels on the occasion of this night,  “Allah’s Messenger (SAW) said that when Lailatul Qadr occurs, Gabriel (AS) descends with a company of angels who invoke blessings on every one who is standing or sitting and remembering Allah, who is Great and Glorious. Then when their festival day comes, i.e., the day when they break their fast, Allah speaks proudly of them to His angels saying, “My angels, what is the reward of a hired servant who has fully accomplished his work? They reply, “Our Lord, his reward is that he should be paid his wage in full.” He says, “My  angels, My male and female servants have fulfilled what I have made mandatory for them, and then have come out raising their voices in prayer. By My might, glory, honour, high dignity and lofted place, I shall certainly answer them.” Then He says, “Return, for I have forgiven you and changed your evil deeds into good deeds.”  He said that they then return having received forgiveness.”

The Quran is the word of Allah, dictated through the Holy Spirit or Gabriel (AS) to Mohammad (SAW). “None touch it but the purified” (Surah: 56: Verse:  78). It was revealed in the month of Ramadhan on a certain night which afterwards received the name of Lailat al- Qadr  or the Grand Night. It is generally believed and accepted that on 27th night of Ramadhan, the Quran was revealed. It was revealed in Arabia and in Arabic language.  “So we have made it easy in their tongue that they may be mindful.”  The word ‘Quran’ is derived from the root or Qara’a which signifies ‘he read’ or ‘recited’, because in reciting, letters and words are joined to each other in a certain order. “The Book is so called both, because it is a collection of all the best religious teachings and because it is a Book that is or should be read.” The Quran speaks of itself under various names. It is called al- Kitab, a writing which is complete in itself:  al- Furqan, or the Distinguisher between right and wrong or the  Revelation from on High: ‘al-Hukam’ or the Wisdom: ‘al- Shifa’ or Healing; ‘ al- Rahmat’ or the Mercy: ‘ al- Khair’ or the Goodness: ‘al- Ruh’ or the Spirit: ‘al- Bayan’ or the Explanation:  ‘ al- Burhan’ or the Argument;  ‘al-Nur’ or the Light: ‘ al- Haqaq’ or the Truth: ‘ Ahsan- al-Hadith’ or the Best Saying, etc.

The Book of Quran is the heart of the religion, the guide to the Kingdom of Heaven, a compendium of knowledge and guidance in all spheres of life, embodying a code of laws for a kingdom on earth. It was revealed in portions being written and committed to memory as soon as it was revealed. It was spread over 23 years of the Holy Prophet’s (SAW) life.  As the Quran was revealed piecemeal, its verses and chapters were preserved on palm leaves, leather, and shoulder bones of goats and on parchments of papers, as they were dictated by the Prophet to his companions, especially Zaid bin Thabit. The chapters were arranged under the personal direction of the Holy Prophet(SAW). The Quran is divided into 114 chapters, each of which is called Suraha. It is also divided into thirty equal parts or parah.

It is pertinent to deliberate that the night represents the bleakness of ignorance, crudity, callousness that had entangled the entire Arab before the coming of Islam and it was this very Quran revealed on Prophet (SAW) to illuminate the whole region of Arab in particular and the world in general. The Arabs were living a life of violence, confusion and disorder in which there was total absence of ethical or moral values and as a result of which human life and dignity had no place. The Arabs were involved in feuds and wrangles and they would also bury their daughter alive due to inhuman instinct and total ignorance. The Quran came amidst this darkness and showed light to the people who then became the most civilized people of the world under the inspiration of the beloved Prophet (SAW). Keeping these facts in view, the Quran and the Night on which it was revealed, should be taken as a gift from Allah to mankind because after studying it the impious hearts turn into pious hearts and the dark and murky hearts turn into illuminated hearts.

It is necessary that we receive the Night of Power or the Grand Night sincerely and seriously on 27th night of the month of Ramadhan. There are certain standing Hadiths also that the Night should be sought during the odd nights of the last ten nights of the month of Ramadhan. Let us pray to Allah on this Night and seek penance of our sins and receive the full blessings of this Grand Night.