SRINAGAR: As Ramadan began Monday, 16-year-old Baseerat Hussain set a goal for herself. She has planned to participate in the tradition of reading the Qur’an cover to cover during the holy month.
“I learnt reading the Qur’an two years ago. But I couldn’t manage to do a revision simultaneously. I had been planning since then to do so, and Ramadan seemed perfect,” says Baseerat.
Baseerat is taking Qur’anic classes at a local madrassa near her locality in the outskirts of Srinagar. The madrassa is run by a couple of female Islamic scholars. She says she became a part of this madrassa primarily because of its ‘Ramadan theme’ which is towards ‘self betterment’.
Various madrassas in and around Srinagar have started special classes for Ramadan wherein a month long training of self-introspection and restrain is provided to the pupils.
“My parents had learnt about this madrassa and enrolled me there in order to make me complete the goal I had set for this Ramadan. In addition to this, I wanted to move a step forward towards self betterment and reflection,” Baseerat says.
Islamic scholars and preachers say that it is during Ramadan that most of the people turn to Islam and the Qur’an. The practice stems from the belief that the angel Jibreel revealed the Qur’an to the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) over the last 23 years of his life, with the first such revelation coming during Ramadan.
Arifat Jan, an Islamic scholar who runs a small madrassa in Soura area of this city, says “It is the month when we got our greatest gift from Allah. Therefore, Ramadan is the time to practice self-restrain, to cleanse the body and soul from impurities and focus more on the worship of Allah. Ramadan is more about coming closer to Allah. Learning, reciting and memorising the Qur’an is a feat particularly valued and in vogue in most of the Muslim communities.”
Mohammad Afaan, 18, of Rajbagh, says he is determined to work this Ramadan on memorising more verses from the Qur’an.
“Every Ramadan, I make sure to achieve a feat or so in the religious practices. Last Ramadan, I revised the Qur’an, and this year I am aiming to memorise it. Memorising the Qur’an makes one more involved in prayers,” says Afaan.
Like Baseerat and Afaan a number of youth mostly teens are increasingly joining madrassas and Darul Ulooms for Qur’anic teachings especially in the month of Ramadan. The reason they cite is the belief that reciting or learning the Qur’an is more significant during Ramadan.
“The rewards will be manifold for those who recite the holy book in this month. Due to this reason, a large number of youth come forward to learn and revise the Qur’an in the month of Ramadan. This Ramadan I am teaching 25 pupils in a room provided by the mosque. It is double the number of pupils I teach during other months of the year,” Abdul Qadir, an imam of a Srinagar mosque, told Kashmir Reader.