بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـنِ الرَّحِيمِ

Assalaamu ‘alaykum wa Rahmatullah,

In the course of memorising alQur’aan, many hifdh students realise the need to ‘brush up’ on their theoretical knowledge of tajweed and, more importantly, begin the process of practical application of rules and principles.

In general, many students find that once on the journey of hifdh, revision (dhor) of the oldest hifdh may require tajweed improvement and an actual re-learning of the surah. 

Re-learning, really? Isn’t that drastic?!

This would depend on the present quality of tajweed employed in the surah. In some instances it may require a student to re-learn, verse by verse, one word at a time. In cases where pronunciation is weak or tajweed application is virtually non-existent, some words may have been memorised incorrectly or, as another word completely!

This may be the case for those who have –

  • subconsciously learnt from audio or others around them (as growing children) and which then resulted in mispronunciation of letters,
  • memorised alQur’aan while reciting too fast and neglecting correct letter formation
  • memorised alQur’aan without having first studied & practised Tajweed application

For some students the hifdh that requires improvement is the last juzz , or the last 10 suwar. For some, it may even necessitate the re-learning of all hifdh, depending on the difference of tajweed quality between ‘older’ and ‘newer’ hifdh and the individual’s tajweed timeline in relation to her hifdh journey.

So, how does one correct or re-learn this hifdh with the intention of tajweed improvement?

  • Begin by identifying the specific tajweed errors in each surah, eg: surah ‘Asr, with your teacher. Make brief notes & stipulate goals for the coming week and month.
  • Now record (and save) your audio recitation of Surah ‘Asr. Play back on the Surah recording whilst having your notes at hand. Listen carefully once. Observe your errors & inconsistencies.
  • Open your mus-haf to Surah ‘Asr and listen to the audio recitation of one distinguished Qaari. Please ensure that you listen to the same reciter continuously; do not alternate with other reciters. For this exercise, my recommendations are as follows: Shaykh Hudayfi  / Shaykh Husary. As you listen to the recitation, please follow along in your mus-haf.
  • Initially, it is best to follow along and listen carefully, taking note of the correct manner of recitation, pronunciation, nasalisation, elongation of letter, etc. Complete this exercise twice.
  • Thereafter, recite along once WITH the audio.
  • Repeat this exercise for two days.
  •  On the third day, incorporate Surah ‘Asr in one unit of your salaah. Initially, you may find it challenging, as the mind sets out to decipher the differences and of course, the correct version of tajweed! Do not be disheartened: the application of Tajweed may slow down the pace of your recitation (which is a wonderful stepping stone to applying Tarteel !), during which you may unsure of your recitation or feel as though you are making additional errors. Again, do not be disheartened. Remember, these are errors that have built up over months, years and perhaps, even decades – it will take time and perseverance, but it is well worth it! After all, what is tahfeedh without Tajweed, yes?
  • Now record (and save) your audio recitation.
  • Remember the initial recording? Play back and listen to both recordings one after the other. Do you notice the marked difference?
  • By the end of the week, your confidence in the hifdh of this surah should be restored: recite to your teacher and gain her valuable feedback, ma shaa Allah!
  • The time spent in re-learning will differ from surah to surah, depending on its current tajweed foundation. This method can be applied to complete suwar or independent verses, too.
  • Continue incorporating regularly in salaah, practise the surah out aloud, and listen to it often, so as to keep old errors at bay and reinforce the clearer, more accurate and correct recitation of the surah.

Whilst at times disillusioning or overwhelming, remember that this period too, shall pass. As with all other elements of your hifdh journey, it is how you respond to the learning challenges and grow spiritually from these bounties.

My final advise, to all reading this post: Please, please, do not neglect your tajweed in lieu of hifdh progress. It is never too late, wether you are in the advanced stages of hifdh or even if you have completed memorisation.Tajweed is Waajib and it is our Islamic responsibility and duty to recite alQur’aan clearly & correctly. Never dismiss Tajweed as ‘elementary’ nor procrastinate this necessary step: it is your stepping stone to an enjoyable and fulfilling hifdh journey, in shaa Allah.

Learning resources: http://www.l2rq.com/ with Ustadh Wisam Sherrief

Stay Inspired!

Rayhaanah

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