How To Memorize The Quran

In this post, you’ll learn one of the most effective strategies I’ve ever come across for doing your hifz of the Quran and building a very close relationship with Allah (swt) in the process…

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So, this hifz technique was taught by the Algerian Shaykh Zakariya al-Siddiqi who teaches at the Institute of Human Sciences in France and is one of the foremost scholars of Quran today.

He memorised it by the age of 9 and dedicated his life to studying and teaching it, and he once told us the story of one of his friends. His friend was an engineering student, who was a ‘Fresher’ about to embark on a 5 year degree. Let’s call him Ahmed…

Ahmed was an intelligent student who followed one of the oft-forgotten Sunnah’s of Success…

Quran Memorization Tip 1: Wake Up Early

He woke up earlier than most people. In fact, he woke up on time to get to the Mosque to pray Fajr every day. When he got home from the mosque, instead of busying himself with the internet or watching television, he spent the first few minutes of each day memorising the Quran.

Quran Memorization Tip 2: Each Day Memorise Less Than You Think You Can

Ahmed made a firm commitment to memorise the Quran, but instead of rushing in and trying to memorise one or two pages each day (like his friends who gave up before long), he confined himself to learning 5 lines per day.

This worked out to be about 20-30 minutes per day for him.

Quran Memorization Tip 3: Get Familiar First

In order to overcome the initial unfamiliarity with the new verses, he spent the first few minutes each day actually writing out the 5 lines of that day onto a small sheet of paper.

He spent the next few minutes reciting them over and over, and then attempted to memorise them.

Quran Memorization Tip 4: Keep Today’s Verses Close At Hand

As Ahmed went about his day, he often found that he had a few chunks of time – several minutes each. During these times, such as waiting for the bus, or waiting for a teacher to turn up to a class, Ahmed would try to remember the 5 lines from that morning.

To aid his memory, he kept the sheet that he wrote out that morning folded in his pocket, and would pull it out if he was struggling.

Quran Memorization Tip 5: Use What You Memorise In Every Single Salah

To further support his memory, every prayer he prayed that day, he would recite the same 5 verses of Quran that he learned that morning. In each aka’, he would alternate between the 5 lines from that day, and the 5-10 lines he learned the previous days. And remember…

Quran Memorization Tip 6: Keep Track Of Your Goal

With the Uthmani script of the Quran, there are exactly 15 lines per page. So, by the end of the week, Ahmed had not only memorised 2 whole pages of the Quran, but he had written them out in full, too… a very blessed act if ever there was one.

Quran Memorization Tip 7: Perfect Your Tajweed As You Go

On the weekend, Ahmed would visit a local scholar of Quran recitation, and would revise with him the 2 pages he had just memorised, and have a go at the 2 pages he would be working on the following week. This way, he was certain to learn the Quran with accurate tajweed and beautiful recitation.

There was one other secret to Ahmed’s success.

The Spiritual Secrets Of Successful Memorisation… 

Once a week, on a weekend evening (usually on a Friday night), Ahmed would wake up in the middle of the night, and pray Tahajjud. During his special Tahajjud prayer, Ahmed would recite the whole two pages he had learned that week, and consolidate them.

At this point, the Shaykh mentioned that perhaps one of the reasons so few people manage to wake up and do this special prayer, which is highly recommended by the Quran and by our beloved Prophet (saw), is that we don’t have anything to recite.

We have so little Quran memorised that there’s no fun or enjoyment in the challenge of waking up for Tahajjud, and we often find even the fard prayers a ‘chore’ instead of a pleasure.

The Results…

You can imagine Ahmed’s excitement and feeling of achievement and success 3 months after he started, when he had memorised the entire 1st Juz!

It’s not just the feeling of success and empowerment that the Quran gave him, but also the deep connection with Allah (SWT) he felt every single day.

You can only imagine how proud he must have felt of himself, when upon graduation Ahmed not only received a 1st class degree in engineering (he was 3rd in his class), but he had also officially memorised the entire Quran. He was a hafidh.

Shaykh Zakariya pointed out a final lesson from this blessed brother.

The biggest achievement he made was not to memorise the Quran. The biggest achievement he made was to be deeply connected with the Quran every single day for 5 years.

That connection with Allah (SWT) is what made Ahmed so special. That deep link with the Creator is what keeps life in perspective and is what helped Ahmed to keep on track with the little weekly targets he set for himself.

One can only imagine what happened to Ahmed’s levels of personal fulfilment, Iman and taqwa, as he went back every single day to develop this ritual of ihsan (spiritual excellence). Each day he woke up for Fajr and wrote out another 5 lines of Quran, his self-esteem and self-confidence soared…

“Can the reward for excellence be anything other than excellence?” Surah Rahman (55: 60)


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