Title: How to Approach and Understand the Qur’an
Author: Jamaal al-Din M. Zarabozo
Publication: Al-Basheer Company 1999
Reviewed by: Safwan
More often than not there is a missing link between a Muslim and the Qur’an, and this is what the book seeks to address and re-establish. Using strong arguments from the Qur’an, al-sunnah, and reasoning, Zarabozo splendidly points and clears out some very interesting core issues concerning Muslims and the Sacred Text.
Before he could lay out his well-warranted formula in approaching the Qur’an, alluding to that, he makes it clear to readers about what al-Qur’an actually is, and with that, the responsibilities and obligations that comes with it. There are numerous examples on how this Text has been viewed, read, and practiced by the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) and his companions, which compel us to reflect on ourselves- our relation with the Qur’an. Their mere statements make a very clear and vivid picture of the role this Book played in influencing their beliefs, actions, and emotions. Their achievements stand until today as unequivocal proof on the virtue of Allah’s guidance and blessings that could be derived from the Qur’an.
Consistent with his enlightenment on the major goals of Qur’an, Zarabozo condemns what he described as the practices of most Muslims today. These include not reading the Qur’an, reading it only for the sake of blessing; cure and healing; studying scientific miracles; cultures and knowledge; and protection from evil. On top of that, he argued that the Qur’an should not be recited without its meaning being pondered, and hence acted, upon. This made clear, he then proposes a set of guidance to answer the question raised by this work’s title, including the correct manners of interpreting the Sacred Text.
In essence; the Qur’an has brought dignity and success to the earlier generations. It is the same Qur’an that we have in our hands today- except that at present, nobody can deny its ‘dormancy’. If we want to start changing the world, change first our approach and attitude toward the Qur’an.