The Culmination

Tilāwah:

Qabl al-Ẓuhr: Sūrah al-Zumar Verses 53 to 75; Sūrah al-Ṭāriq

Qirāʾah: Ḥafṣ ʿan ʿĀṣim, Hishām ʿan Ibn ʿĀmir, Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ

Baʿd al-Ẓuhr: Sūrah Āl ʿImrān Verses 185 to 195; Sūrah al-ʿAṣr; Sūrah al-Kawthar

Qirāʾah: Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ

Qabl al-Ẓuhr

The tilāwah began with Shehzada Saheb (DM) opting to recite a substantial passage of verses in the most familiar narration of Ḥafṣ ʿan ʿĀṣim. The recitation in Ḥafṣ continued till Verse 69 barring one verse, the 56th, that was recited in multiple narrations. The changes in this verse are listed below:

  1. Yā ḥasratā (يا حسرتى) with fatḥah = Ḥafṣ ʿan ʿĀṣim
  2. Yā ḥasratae with taqlīl = Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ
  3. Nafsui yā ḥasratae with imālah and without idghām = Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah
  4. Yā ḥasratāya = Ibn Jammaz ʿan Abū Jaʿfar
  5. Yā ḥasratāi (with madd 6 ḥarakāt) = Ibn Wardān ʿan Abū Jaʿfar
  6. Yā ḥasratāh (يا حسرتاه) at the time of waqf only = Ruways ʿan Yāʿqūb

Click here to listen to all wujūh listed above.

Upon reaching the 69th verse of Sūrah al-Zumar, Shehzada Saheb (DM) transitioned into the narration of Hishām ʿan Ibn ʿĀmir. This narration contains an interesting phenomenon where the kasrah (zayr) on the first letter of certain words is changed into 1/3rd ḍammah (paysh) and 2/3rds kasrah (zayr). This same phenomenon also occurs in the narration of Ruways ʿan Yaʿqūb and the qirāʾah of al-Kisāʾī, however, Ruways’ narration contains qaṣr al-munfaṣil (the non application of madd munfaṣil) and al-Kisāʾi does not read the subsequent word فتحت with a tashdīd on the letter تاء (futtiḥat). Shehzada Saheb (DM) not only elongated the madd munfaṣil but also read the word فتحت as futtiḥat indicating that the narration being recited was of Hishām.

The phenomenon mentioned earlier is termed  إشمام كسر الحرف الأول ضما i.e. to provide a hint of paysh before continuing with zayr. Shehzada Saheb (DM) did so in several words which can be heard in the links provided below:

  1. Verse 69, Word: وجيئ
  2. Verse 71, Word وسيق
  3. Verse 72, Word وقيل

After completing Sūrah al-Zumar, Shehzada Saheb (DM) recited Sūrah al-Ṭāriq in the riwāyah of Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ. In this narration, the word lammā is recited without tashdīd as lamā.

Baʿd al-Ẓuhr

This soulful recitation touched many a heart and wet many an eye. It was entirely in the narration of Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ. The narration of Warsh has been transmitted through two main turuq i.e. paths. These are the tarīq of al-Azraq and the tarīq of al-Iṣbahānī. Al-Shāṭibī, who has narrated the seven mutawātir recitations, has chosen the tarīq of al-Azraq over that of al-Iṣbahānī. Therefore this narration is also referred to as the riwāyah of Warsh from the qirāʾah of Nāfiʿ from the tarīq of al-Azraq brought to us through the tarīq of al-Shāṭibīyah (رواية ورش عن نافع من طريق الأزرق من طريق الشاطبية). The path of al-Azraq is the most commonly recited narration of Warsh especially in North Africa and Sudan outside of Egypt. 

This brings us to the culmination of this series of Tajweed Explained. May Allah ta’ala forgive the errors contained herein and carry the reward of whatever is accurate, precise and beneficial to Syedna Aali Qadr Mufaddal Saifuddin TUS. May Allah ta’ala grant Shehzada Husain bhaisaheb Burhanuddin Saheb (DM) jazā-e-khayr for this opportunity bestowed on the keen followers of Qur’an-e-Majeed and its various sciences. May Allah ta’ala grant Syedna Aali Qadr Mufaddal Saifuddin a long and healthy life till the day of judgement. (Aameen). 

Cure and Mercy

Tilāwah: Sūrah al-Isrāʾ Verses 70 – 96 & Sūrah al-Ikhlāṣ

Qirāʾah: Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ and some transitions.

On the 9th of Muharram, Shehzada Saheb (DM) recited two and a half pages of fascinating tilāwah in the reading of Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ. This was followed by a recitation of Sūrah al-Ikhlāṣ in multiple readings.

As far as the tilāwah of Sūrah al-Isrāʾ is concerned, Shehzada Saheb (DM) continued in the reading of Warsh till Verse 77 (سنة من قد). He then recited this particular verse again in the qirāʾah of Abū ʿAmr. This difference was highlighted when Shehzada Saheb read the hamzah in والأرض (wal-arḍ) with taḥqeeq (wal-arḍ) instead of naql (wa-larḍ), the latter being the norm in Warsh. Furthermore, the word رسلنا was recited as ruslinā instead of rusulinā. Abū ʿAmr’s reading is the lone reading which contains this difference. 

In the very next verse, Shehzada Saheb (DM) transitioned into the reading of Ibn Kathīr which was highlighted when the word قرآن was recited as qurān instead of qurʾān

After this, Shehzada Saheb (DM) transitioned back into Warsh and continued in that reading till he reached Verse 82 (وننزل من القرآن) and changed to the reading of al-Dawrī ʿan Abū ʿAmr (and those who match him in this instance) that was highlighted through the following difference: The word ننزل was recited as nunzilu instead of nunazzilu. The recitation continued in Warsh till Verse 88. This verse was again repeated in the reading of Ibn Kathīr as mentioned in the previous paragraph and the word qurʾān was changed to qurān along with ṣilah al-mīm (صلة الميم) in the word بعضهم (baʿḍuhumū).

The next verse (ولقد صرفنا) was first recited in Warsh and then in the reading of al-Dawrī ʿan Abū ʿAmr. This was made clear when Shehzada Saheb (DM) did the idghām of the letter دال into the letter صاد in the phrase ولقد صرفنا rendering the phrase as walaqaṣ-ṣarrafnā. There was an addition of imālah in both instances of the word al-nās.

The subsequent recitation continued in Warsh till the end of Verse 96. Let us now discuss some peculiarities of the reading of Warsh which help us identify it with relative ease: 

  1. You will come across instances when the letter lām is recited with tafkhīm. Listen here.
  2. There are instances in this reading where the madd badal is elongated 2, 4 or 6 ḥarakāt. Listen here
  3. There are naql al-ḥarakah of hamzah to the silent letter (حرف ساكن) that comes before it. Listen to examples here.
  4. There are instances of imālah and taqlīl.
  5. There are instances where the mīm of plurality is elongated to the extent of a madd munfaṣil when it occurs before a hamzah. Listen here.
  6. There are instances when the letter rāʾ is recited with tarqīq. Listen here.

The second part of the tilāwah contained a mixed recitation of Sūrah al-Ikhlāṣ. The differences are listed below: 

  1. Kufuʾana-ḥad = Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ
  2. Kufuʾan aḥad = Ibn Kathīr and others
  3. Kufuwan aḥad = Hafṣ
  4. The three wujūh of Ḥamzah: Kufʾana-ḥad (naql), Kufʾan aḥad (taḥqīq of hamzah), Kufʾan aḥad (saktah and taḥqīq).

Dazzlingly Luminous

Tilāwah: Sūrah al-Nūr Verses 36 – 40; Sūrah al-Fajr

Qirāʾah: Base Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah, al-Dawrī ʿan Abū ʿAmr, Al-Kisāʾī

Today, was a luminous day for the followers of tajwīd. Shehzada Husain bhaisaheb Burhanuddin Saheb (DM) recited the dazzling verses of Sūrah al-Nūr in a luminous display of tilāwah that was replete with the various melodious maqāmāt and riwāyāt.

Today’s tilāwah was dazzlingly luminous because it contained references to almost all qirāʾāt. While Shehzada Saheb (DM) based his recitation on the narration of Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah, he carved his way through several other narrations and recitations which are listed down below in full detail. Some portions are attributed to one qirāʾah even though multiple qirāʾāt might contain those particular references. This is to make it easy and less confusing for the reader. 

Shehzada Saheb (DM) began the recitation of the āyah al-nūr in the narration of Ḥafṣ ʿan ʿĀṣim. Quickly transitioning into Khalaf, evident through the naql al-ḥarakah and saktah while doing waqf on the word والأرض (wal-arḍ), he repeated the phrase دري يوقد five times in five different recitations. All five are listed below:

  1. Durrīyun tawaqqada (with ikhfāʾ) = Qunbul ʿan Ibn Kathīr (Listen)
  2. Durrīyun tūqadu (with ikhfāʾ) = Khalaf al-ʿĀshir (Listen)
  3. Dirrī-ʾun tawaqqada (with madd and ikhfāʾ) = al-Sūsī ʿan Abū ʿAmr (Listen)
  4. Dirrī-ʾun tūqadu (with madd and ikhfāʾ) = Al-Kisāʾī (Listen)
  5. Durrī-ʾun tūqadu (with madd and ikhfāʾ) = Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah (Listen)

Shehzada Saheb (DM) continued the tilāwah in the narration of Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah until he reached the next verse, fī buyūtin (في بيوت). Here he transitioned into the recitation of Shuʿbah ʿan ʿĀṣim which is identical in this verse to the qirāʾah of Ibn ʿĀmir from both his narrators. The differences are as follows: 

  1. The word buyūt replaced with biyūt. (Click here to listen)
  2. The word yusabbiḥu replaced with yusabbaḥu
    (Click here to listen)

Interestingly, there were several instances of imālah in this recitation of Khalaf which have rarely been seen recently as a matter of coincidence. These were in Verses 39 and 40 of Sūrah al-Nūr. They are listed below:

  1. Ḥattā izā jāʾahū (جاءه)
  2. Fawaffāhu ḥisābah (فوفىه)
  3. Yaghshāhu mawjun (يغشاه)
  4. Lam yakad yarāhā (يرىها)

Click on the Arabic words to listen to their pronunciations in the form of imālah

In one of the most dazzling mornings of the year Shehzada Saheb (DM) recited the entire Sūrah al-Fajr in several interesting forms. Below is a list of the changes he incorporated in the recitation. 

  1. The word watr changed to witr = This change is narrated by Khalaf and al-Kisāʾī
  2. The word yasr changed to yasrī = This change is narrated by Ibn Kathīr, Yaʿqūb, Nāfiʿ, Abū ʿAmr and Abū Jaʿfar (latter three conditionally, former two unconditionally).

Shehzada Saheb (DM) continued to recite in the narration of Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah until he reached the 20th verse. From here, he went back to the 15th verse (فأما الإنسان) and began reciting in the narration of al-Dawrī ʿan Abū ʿAmr until the 26th verse that ends with aḥad. Some of the changes in the latter narration were as follows: 

  1. The word rabbī changed to rabbiya with a fatḥah (zabar).
  2. The word tukrimūn changed to yukrimūn.
  3. The word taḥāḍḍūna changed to yaḥuḍḍūna.
  4. The word taʾkulūna changed to yaʾkulūna.
  5. Taqlīl in the word annā and imālah in the word zikrā.

After reaching the 26th verse, Shehzada Saheb (DM) went back to the 25th verse and transitioned into the recitation of Abū al-Ḥārith ʿan al-Kisāʾī’s narration. The changes in this narration are as follows:

  1. The word yuʿḏḏibu changed to yuʿḏḏabu
  2. The word yūthiqu changed to yūthaqu
  3. The imālah of hāʾ al-thaʿnīth in al-muṭmaʾinnah and marḍīyah.

The recitation ended with a lot more to be desired (in a positive sense) even though Shehzada Saheb (DM) had given more than we, the audience, deserved. May Allah Ta’ala bestow Shehzada Saheb (DM) with a long life in the khidmat of our Maula Syedna Aali Qadr Mufaddal Saifuddin (TUS).

Worthy of Praise

Tilāwah: Sūrah Luqmān 8 – 22, Sūrah al-Ḥamd

Qirāʾah: Qālūn & Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ; Assortment of Readings

No words of praise would do justice to the tilāwah of Sūrah al-Ḥamd by Shehzada Husain bhaisaheb Burhanuddin Saheb (DM) today. The recitation contained references to the narrations of Ḥafṣ ʿan ʿĀṣim, Qunbul ʿan Ibn Kathīr, al-Sūsī ʿan Abū ʿAmr and Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah. The changes in the recitation effectively covered all ten readings even while direct references were made to the aforementioned four readings. 

  1. The two mīms of rahīm and mālik were joined in a display of idghām kabīr and a reference to the reading of Abū ʿAmr (al-raḥīm-maliki).
  2. The alif in māliki was dropped in congruence with the reading of Abū ʿAmr.
  3. The recurring word ṣirāṭ with a ṣād was changed to sirāṭ with a sīn in a reference to the reading of Qunbul.
  4. Qunbul’s reading also caused the ṣilah of the mīm of plurality (ʿalayhimū).
  5. The same word ṣirāṭ was repeated with a hint of the letter zāy while pronouncing ṣād in a reference to the reading of Khalaf.
  6. The same reading caused the letter hāʾ in the word ʿalyhim to be read as ʾalayhum.

This tilāwah served as a reminder to the famous qirāʾah of Shaikh ʿAbdul Bāsiṭ where he had delivered a similar rendition of Sūrah al-Ḥamd. Click here to listen.


While reciting Sūrah Luqmān, Shehzada Saheb (DM) brilliantly delivered the maqām of ḥijāz twice in a row. Listen to some examples of this maqām below. 

  1. From Sūrah al-Aḥzāb
  2. From Sūrah al-Ḥajj

Sūrah Luqmān was recited in the twin narrations of Qālūn and Warsh from the qirāʾah of Nāfiʿ. Find attached a page from the muṣ-ḥaf of Warsh and try to read it following the tajweed markings given in it. Then match your recitation with the audio provided below. Post your observations/questions in the comments section below after you have successfully finished the activity.

Audio of above page in the narration of Warsh.

Reciters, Narrators and a Hint of Melody – Part 3

TilāwahSūrah al-Fatḥ Verses 1 – 10 & 27 – 29, Sūrah al-Balad 

Qirāʾah: Qunbul ʿan Ibn Kathīr, al-Sūsī ʿan Abū ʿAmr, Abū al-Ḥārith ʿan al-Kisāʾī

Today Shehzada Saheb (DM) did not leave any stone unturned to keep the followers of tajweed interested. His recitation was divided into three parts and all three were delivered in different qirāʾāt and riwāyāt

The first part of Sūrah al-Fatḥ was recited in the riwāyah of Qunbul from the qirāʾah of Ibn Kathīr al-Makkī. The first indication of this riwāyah came when Shehzada Saheb (DM) recited the letter sīn in place of the letter ṣād in the word صراط. Only two readings allow for this change, one of them being of Qunbul. This reading is also characterized with the ṣilah of the mīm al-jamʿ (the mīm of plurality). One will often hear the sound of  while the Qur’an is being recited in this riwāyah. It also contains the ṣilah of the hāʾ al-ḍamīr (هاء الضمير) which led to Shehzada Saheb reciting the word تسبحوه as yusabbiḥuhū (the change of tāʾ to yāʾ is unrelated to the ḥukm of ṣilah) as can be heard here. 

The second part of the recitation in the narration of al-Sūsī introduces a new term related to the ʿilm al-qirāʾāt. This term is taqlīl (تقليل). It pertains to the pronouncement of the ḥarf al-madd alif and is one of its three stages. These stages are fatḥah, taqlīl and imālah. This alif, henceforth referred to as the alif layyinah, is either pronounced ‘normally’ for example in the word sīmāhum (سيماهم), or with a little slant towards the sound of the letter yāʾ but closer to the letter alif, the sound one would hear when the reciter reads the word sīmāhum with a smile. This is taqlīl. On the other hand, imālah is when the slanted alif layyinah is closer to the sound of the letter yāʾ than to the letter alif. In other words, an imālah is a slanted version of the taqlīl. The three examples can be heard here

The third part of the recitation in the narration of Abū al-Ḥārith from the qirāʾah of al-Kisāʾī also introduces a new term. This is the imālah of hāʾ al-taʾnīth (هاء التأنيث). Grammarians will note that there is no such thing as the “hāʾ” of taʾnīth; however, this term has become ubiquitous in the circles of the ʿilm al-qirāʾat and hence we will continue to use it in this article. Al-Kisāʾī has uniquely chosen to perform imālah on the letter occurring before a hāʾ al-taʾnīth as we heard in Sūrah al-Balad today. This is done when a reciter stops at a word that contains the hāʾ al-taʾnīth at the end of it. For example: مسغبة. Instead of reciting the final syllable of this word as bah, al-Kisāʾī chooses to slant the zabar of the second last letter, i.e. bāʾ in this case, and reads the word as masghabeh. The pronunciation of the letter bāʾ is closer to a kasrah but not entirely a kasrah (zer). Listen to the امالة هاء التأنيث here. This ḥukm is one of the unique aḥkām of tajweed and provides an interesting angle to the tilāwah.


The Maqām of Ṣabā

This is a maqām characterized with a deep emotion of sorrow and lamentation. It is a maqām, which if rendered to its greatest effect, produces tearful eyes and soulful hearts. Shehzada Saheb (DM) often incorporates the various aspects of this maqām into his recitation.
Click the following links to listen to some famous reciters performing their tilāwah in this maqām: 

  1. Shaikh Abdul Basit reciting Sūrah Ghāshiyah
  2. Shaikh Abdul Basit reciting Sūrah Al-Qiyāmah

Tajweed Answers

Q. What is the uniqueness of the riwayat of Hafs from Asim? And why was this qira’at opted by the Ahlul Bayt apart from it being easy to read and memorize? Please do share some light on this.
A. The reading of Hafs from Asim has been directly transmitted from Amirul Mumineen Maulana Ali b. Abu Talib AS. This may be one of the primary reasons why the reading was well acclaimed across all sections of the Islamic society.
 
Q. There were some places where Shehzada saheb didn’t applied any Saktah like سوء Sawinw in this ayat يااخت هارون…Question is why?
A. The ḥukm of saktah varies across the different qirāʾāt. Some reciters also allow both versions - with and without saktah - in their narrations. Such aḥkām are referred to by the phrase بخلف عنه written after the ḥukm. There are other places where reciters or their narrators allow for the naql al-ḥarakah
Q. I noticed tht Shzsaab (DM) used to take a very short pause in between aayat itself, especially when the next word’s first letter was alif in tht particular aayat itself. Can u discuss this hukum in detail? Shukran.
A. This ḥukm is the saktah. An interesting and often delightful ḥukm, it is found commonly throughout the various qirāʾāt. Hafṣ has incorporated the saktah in five instances in his narration. Here, a person reciting the qur'an is expected to take a short breathless pause before moving on to the subsequent letter. The saktah almost always happens before the hamzah mufradah but is not limited to that. Listen to an interesting use of the saktah here

Back to Basics – 1

Tilāwah: Sūrah Maryam, Verses 1 – 36

Riwāyah: Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah

Rasulullah (SAW) said concerning the Qur’an: The Qur’an has descended upon seven letters. نزل القرآن على سبعة أحرف. 

Several explanations have been provided to explain the meaning of these seven letters. The significance of the number seven is also well known to us. However, the seven letters from a ẓāhirī perspective are the differences between the various readings as listed out in the article entitled “The Readings.”

This brings us to the question of the origin of these readings. 

It is narrated that Rasulullah (SAW) used to visit the various Arabian tribes and present the Qur’an to them in their local dialect. Several scholars used to memorize and recite the Qur’an exactly as they had heard from Rasulullah (SAW). However, when the scholars multiplied and so did their readings, there arose a need to authenticate what the scholars had memorized. This led to the rise of a subsequent generation of scholars who dedicated their time and effort to research into the various readings and determine which were authentic and which were not. 

A consensus was reached upon ten readings being authentic. They were named mutawātir readings because their chain of narration was replete with authentic narrators. One of these ten authentic readings is that of Ḥafṣ from ʿĀṣim. This reading is simple and easy to read and memorize. Most people who recite the Qur’an are unaware of any other reading except this. Among the main reasons for the mass acceptance and deep outreach of this reading is that it has been directly transmitted from Amirul Mumineen Maulana Ali b. Abu Talib AS. 

There are three terms one should be aware of while discussing the different Qur’anic readings. The first term is “reading” itself. The original term in Arabic for this word is qirāʾah (قراءة). This is the actual text of the Qur’an. The second term is “narration.” In Arabic, it is riwāyah (رواية). This is the narration of the qirāʾah from the original qārī to whom the reading is attributed. There are two narrators for each qārī. For example, ʿĀṣim has two narrators, Ḥafṣ and Shuʿbah. Therefore, there are a total of 20 narrations, two for each of the ten qirāʾah. The final term is tarīq (طريق). This is the final leg in the journey of a reading’s transmission. In a practical context, the term tarīq is used to refer to the path from which the narration i.e. riwāyah has reached us. The first seven readings have reached us from the tarīq of Al-Shaṭibīyah, a name given to the composition ḥirz al-maʿānī of Abū-l-Qāsim b. Firroh al-Shāṭibī. The last three readings have come to us from the tarīq of Al-Durrah, a name given to the composition al-durrah al-muḍīʿah of Ibn al-Jazarī. These are known as Al-Qirāʾāt al-Ashr al-Sughrā (The Lesser Ten Readings). There are several more turuq and wujuh, all of which are collectively known as Al-Qirāʾāt al-ʿAshr al-Kubrā (The Greater Ten Readings) and are contained in Ibn al-Jazarī’s Tayyibah al-Nashr (طيبة النشر). 

Students of these readings often encounter two other important terms. The first of those is uṣūl or principles. The uṣūl are fixed rules that govern the various aspects of a particular reading. The aḥkām al-tajwīd that we often learn and memorize are also part of the uṣūl. The second term is furushāt. These are the individual differences in each reading which do not conform to a fixed principle. These must be memorized independently. 

Today, Shehzada Saheb (DM) recited in the oft discussed narration of Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah. The entire tilāwah of the first 36 verses of Sūrah Maryam were completed in this reading. 

Do you remember any peculiarities of this Qirāʾah from what was recited today? Do use the space below to post your comments and questions.

The Acclaimed Pearl

TilāwahSūrah al-Baqarah Verses 260 to 266 & Sūrah Ibrāhīm Verses 32 to  41

Qirāʾah: Ibn Wardān ʿan Abī Jaʿfar and Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ

Today, the 4th of Muharram was a bright day in the world of Qirāʾāt. Shehzada Husain bhaisaheb Burhanuddin Saheb (DM) chose to recite the qirāʾah of Abū Jaʿfar al-Madanī, an eminent qārī of Medina whose reading was overseen by Maulānā ʿAbdullāh b. ʿAbbās among others. This reading has reached us through the tarīq (طريق) of Durrah, a composition by Ibn al-Jazarī which contains three readings, complementing the Hirz al-Maʿānī of al-Shāṭibī (which contains seven), thereby completing the ten authentic qirāʾāt

The verses of Sūrah al-Baqarah were, in their entirety, recited in the reading of Abū Jaʿfar. This reading has several distinguishing properties some of which are discussed below:

  1. Abū Jaʿfar has completely omitted the use of imālah even from the word majrāhā (مجرىها). 
  2. Abū Jaʿfar performs ikhfāʾ of the silent (sākin) letter nūn (نون) even when there are the letters ghayn (غين) and khāʾ (خاء) after it. Today, Shehzada Saheb (DM) performed ikhfāʾ at the tanwīn of maghfiratun (مغفرة) in the phrase مغفرة خير (maghfiratun-khayr).
  3. Abū Jaʿfar elongates the mīm (ميم) of plurality for two ḥarakāt. Unlike Warsh, Abū Jaʿfar does not engage the madd al-ṣilah al-kubrā because Abū Jaʿfar does not acknowledge the madd munfaṣil. Shehzada Saheb (DM) duly elongate all such mīm
  4. He replaces the hamzah mufradah with the corresponding ḥarf al-madd when the hamzah mufradah occurs within a single word. Of note are the two words from today’s recitation: meʾat to meyat (مئة -> مية) and riʾā to riyāʾ (رئاء -> رياء).

The second part of the recitation contained verses from Sūrah Ibrāhīm. This recitation was delivered in the reading of Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ, the second most common Qur’anic reading in the world. Nāfiʿ, also a Madanī, had his reading overseen by Maulānā ʿAbdullāh b. ʿAbbās among others. Today’s differences in this reading were as follows: 

  1. The elongation of the madd munfaṣil, madd badal and the naql al-ḥarakah. (Refer to the previous article).
  2. Imālah that is optional in Warsh was engaged by Shehzada Saheb (DM) in the word wa-ʾātākum (وءاتىكم) which was recited as wa-ʿātaekum
  3. The lām in the word ṣalāh (صلوة) was recited with tafkhīm. Listen here.
  4. Madd Līn in the word shayʾ (شيئ). 

Tajweed Answers!

The previous articles in this series attracted a few questions which have been attempted to be answered below: 

Q. What is the maqām of ḥijāz?
A. Among the most perfect Arabian maqāmāt, this maqām induces its audience into emotions of spirituality and reverence. Reciters like Shaikh Abdul Basit excelled in this maqām. Here is an example
Q.  Kindly share a visual display of the differences in each qirāʾāt if possible.  
A. In order to quickly refer to the differences in the readings of the various qurrāʾ, one should consider reading from a muṣ-ḥaf that contains all the ten readings together. The commentary in the margins will immediately help distinguish between the various readings. 
Q. When Shehzada Saheb (DM) recited واذا البحار سجرت (sujirat and not sujjirat). Is it the same reading of al-Sūsī ʿan Abī ʿAmr? Can u give a brief on how many such letters the ḥarakah of tashdeed is skipped on?
A. There are certain places where a particular qārī differs from his colleagues without basing such difference on a principle. Such differences are also known as furushāt. These do not conform to a fixed rule and differ from narration to narration and reading to reading. The difference in sujirat is part of the furushāt and is not part of the uṣūl

Reciters, Narrators and a Hint of Melody – Part 2

Today’s recitation (Day 3): Sūrah al-Rūm Verses 17 to 27 & Sūrah al-Burūj (full).

Today’s tilāwah brought about a pleasant change in the base qirāʾah from Ḥafṣ ʿan Āṣim to Warsh ʿan Nāfiʿ, the second most commonly read Qur’anic reading in the world. The term “base qirāʾah” is used here in the context of a recitation where a qārī adopts a base reading and transitions from this base to other readings. Shehzada Husain bhaisaheb Burhanuddin Saheb (DM) began his tilāwah of Sūrah al-Rūm in the reading of Warsh. This reading is characterized with the naql al-ḥarakah, a phenomenon related to dialectic and accentual disposition where the ḥarakah between a lām sākinah (the letter lām with a jazm on it) and an alif mutaḥarrikah (the letter alif with a short vowel on it) succeeding it is skipped, thereby advancing the ḥarakah of alif to the lām and causing the alif to become silent. An example of this ḥukm is as follows: The phrase والأرض , under normal circumstances, would be read as wal-arḍ. However, if the ḥukm of naql al-ḥarakah is applied, then wal-arḍ would become wa-larḍ. Listen to an example of naql al-ḥarakah here.

Another feature of Warsh is the omission of the hamzah mufradah (أ and ؤ) and its replacement with either the madd letter wāw or the madd letter alif. An example for this is as follows: مؤمنون (muʾminūn) is changed to مومنون (mūminūn); يأكلون (yaʾkulūn) is changed to ياكلون (yākulūn). Click here to listen. Similarly, Warsh exclusively elongates the madd al-badal more than two ḥarakāt optionally i.e. Warsh allows for the madd al-badal to be elongated to 2, 4 or 6 ḥarakāt.

Keeping these points in mind, today’s recitation of Sūrah al-Rūm contained the aforementioned and some more features of Warsh which are mentioned below.

  1. Madd Badal in the recurring phrase ومن ءاياته was elongated till 4 ḥarakāt
  2. Naql al-Ḥarakah where applicable. 
  3. The word عالمين (ʿālimīn) was changed to (ʿālamīn).
  4. Madd Munfaṣil where the ميم الجمع (the mīm of plurality) was followed by the hamzah mufradah (أ). 
  5. Certain changes in the tarqīq of the letter rāʾ

Once more, the maqām of nahāwand reverberated throughout the masjid engulfing the souls in its intricate beauties. This maqām originates from a city of the same name located in Iran. Considered to be among the most melodious of maqāmsnahāwand comes in multiple forms. Let us have a look at some examples in the voice of famous reciters such as Shaikh Minshawi, among others. 

Follow this link to listen to a short clip of Shaikh Ahmed Nuʿaynah reciting in the initial stages of nahāwand: Reciting from Sūrah Āl ʿImrān

This is a link of Shaikh Minshawi reciting the mid-notes of nahāwand from Sūrah al-Ḥashr. 

This is a link to a near-comprehensive rendering of nahāwand by one of its finest proponents, Shaikh Mustafa Ismail (Sūrah al-Baqarah).

There was a brief transition into Sūsī during the recitation of Sūrah al-Burūj. It was an exciting moment where Shehzada Saheb (DM) offered a glimpse into a derivation of maqām ṣabā, a maqām of pure Arab origin and one which evokes the deepest emotions of sorrow and lamentation. Despite most recitations of Shehzada Saheb displaying subtle effects of ṣabā, today’s recitation, and especially the aforementioned portion stood out in that respect. 

The tilāwah ended on the maqām bayāt

Note: Detailed discussions on Warsh and his qārī Nāfiʿ will be posted subsequently. 

Reciters, Narrators and a Hint of Melody – Part 1

The first majlis of Ashara Mubaraka 1440 commenced with Shehzada Husain bhaisaheb Burhanuddin Saheb (DM) delivering a recitation containing two different readings that will be discussed briefly in this article. The recitation was adorned with a beautiful assortment of maqāmāt which too will be dealt in a brief, albeit sufficient manner.

The first of the two parts of the tilāwah (تلاوة) began from the 61st verse of Sūrah al-Furqān. The riwāyah i.e. narration was of Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah. This was quickly ascertained in the seventh word itself where Shehzada Saheb (DM) did not perform the idghām bil ghunnah (الادغام بالغنة) in the phrase: بروجا وجعل, and was further confirmed when Shehzada Saheb recited suruj (سرجا) instead of sirāj (سراجا), the latter being the narration of Ḥafṣ.

Here, the reader will recall that the previous article entitled “The Readings” contains a list of key differences which helps a listener distinguish between the various readings. The first difference mentioned in the previous paragraph pertains to the difference in accents and dialects while the second difference pertains to the changing of nouns from singular to plural.

Interestingly, the narration of Khalaf is characterized with frequent saktahs and the skipping of harakāt at instances of idghām on the letters wāw and yāʾ (الواو والياء). Khalaf also uses the imālah extensively but since there was no instance of imālah in today’s qirāʾah, its discussion can be postponed to a future article.

Shehzada Saheb (DM) transitioned beautifully between the various maqāmāt but two transitions and renderings stood out towards the end of the first part of the recitation. This was when Shehzada Saheb ended a verse on the maqām of ḥijāz and began the next verse with nahāwand. Whereas the different notes of nahāwand evoke emotions such as passion and compassion compelling the reader to contemplate, the maqām of ḥijāz excels in immersing the listener in emotions of spirituality (روحانية) and reverence (خشوع). This can be considered an ohbat for what was to come of the kalimāt nūrānīyah of Syedna Aali Qadr Mufaddal Saifuddin (TUS) which, at their very commencement, resulted in a sea of tears from the mumineen who were eagerly waiting to hear the voice of their beloved Maula while he performed the amal of bukā and ibkāʾ on Imām Husain (AS).

The second part of Shehzada Saheb (DM)’s qirāʾah contained a recitation of the entire Sūrah al-Takwīr in the narration of al-Sūsī from the reading of Abū ʿAmr al-Baṣrī. Abū ʿAmr was a famed grammarian apart from being one of the seven main reciters of the Qur’an. The historian Ibn Khallikān narrated in his magnum opus “Wafayāt al-Aʿyān” (The Obituaries of Eminent Men) that Abu ʿAmr is part of the fourth generation of grammarians descended from Amīr al-Muʿminīn Maulānā ʿAlī b. Abū Ṭālib (AS).

The reading of al-Sūsī ʿan Abū ʿAmr is famously characterized with the idghām kabīr where two similar or same mutaḥarrik letters are combined into one. For example: The phrase على الغيب بضنين (ghaybi-biḍanīn) is changed to ghayb-biḍanīn. Listen to this clip to understand idghām kabīr in a more clear way. Shehzada Saheb (DM)’s recitation infused a new life into this Qur’anic narration and the air was filled with exclamations of “Allah, Allah” from the audience.

Note: Readers are encouraged to post valuable inputs, corrections (if any errors are to be found in this article) and queries (if any) in the comments space below. 

The Victory

(This article contains links to audio files hosted on SoundCloud. Similarly, technical terms have been linked to a glossary. Kindly click on linked words to listen to the relevant audio or to read more about technical terms.)

The mumineen of Indore secured a clear victory when, on the day of ʿĪd, Syedna Aali Qadr Mufaddal Saifuddin (TUS) declared Indore as the destination for Ashara Mubaraka 1440. The fundamental essence of this victory was highlighted on the day of istiqbaal, the 26th of Dhu-l-Hijjah, when Shehzada Husain bhaisaheb Burhanuddin Saheb (DM) recited the opening verses from Sūrah al-Fatḥ in a heartrending voice that not only heralded the victory of having succeeded in achieving the zikr of Imam Husain (AS) in the city of Indore but also served as a reminder of those memorable instances when Syedna Mohammad Burhanuddin (RA) had visited Indore in 1407 and 1423 and prepared the ground for what mumineen would behold in 1440 of the zikr-e-husain through the nooraani kalimaat of Syedna Aali Qadr Mufaddal Saifuddin (TUS).

Shehzada Saheb (DM) began the tilawah with the istiʿādhah and basmalah reminiscent of Shaikh Muhammad al-Minshawi‘s supple renditions. The tilawah was entirely in the riwayah of Ḥafṣ ʿan ʿĀṣim, the most familiar of all readings especially in the subcontinent. It continued till the fifth verse of Sūrah al-Fatḥ after which Shehzada Saheb recited Sūrah al-Ḍuḥā and concluded the recitation at the end of this sūrah.

The next few paragraphs will discuss certain technicalities of the recitation which include a brief discussion on maqamaat and wuqūf.

You have already heard the short clip of Minshawi‘s opening in the previous link. That is the maqaam of bayāt. This particular maqaam is often employed by the reciters of the Qur’an – the qurrāʾ – due to its three main characteristics. Firstly, this maqaam is quite easy to learn and recite. Students of maqamaat are initially trained in this very maqaam because, and this is also its second essential characteristic, it is very easy to transition into other maqaams such as ṣabāʿajam and even nahāwand from this maqaam due to its proximity with all other maqamaat. The third characteristic is the versatility of this maqaam. A reciter who has mastered this maqaam will be able to extract numerous tones and will even be able to base his entire recitation on this single maqaam. This maqaam tends to attract the conscious towards the Qur’an and causes the listener to contemplate its verses. 

Shehzada Saheb (DM) began his recitation with bayāt quickly transitioning into several interesting intonations. Notable was the nahāwand that stretched across the first five verses of Sūrah al-Ḍuḥā, yielding a spirited response from the audience. The recitation ended with a brief return to bayāt followed by the kalimah al-taṣdīq.

Coming to the wuqūf, they play an important role in defining the quality of recitation especially in terms of the enhancement of meanings or suppression thereof. In this context, Shehzada Saheb (DM) made an unexpected waqf at the word “li-yazdādū” in the second verse of Sūrah al-Fatḥ. Stoppages like these cause the listener to pause and contemplate the words of the Qur’an. 

Another interesting element in the recitation was the joining of basmalah with the first verse of  Sūrah al-Ḍuḥā and repeating the first verse with the succeeding four verses, creating an atmosphere of anticipation and compelling the audience to maintain their attention to the recitation. Here is an example from the recitation of Shaikh Abdul Basit doing so.

Carrying forward from last year, had these verses (of Sūrah al-Fatḥ) been recited in the riwayah of Khalaf ʿan Ḥamzah, the following changes would have been noticed in the recitation:

  1. The letter ص in صراط (Verse 2) would have been recited with a hint of the letter ز like so.
  2. All the madd munfaṣil would have been elongated to six harakaat
  3. The harakah between wal and ʾarḍ in the word والأرض (Verse 4) would have been eliminated like so.
  4. There would have been a saktah (a breathless pause) before the hamzah of الأنهار (Verse 5) like so.
  5. The hamzah in سيئاتهم would have been changed to the letter ي and the word would be pronounced like so.

Technicalities apart, an oft repeated question pertaining to the basics is regarding the difference between tarteel and tajweed of the Qur’an. Perhaps the following example might serve to explain this difference in simple words: A wall that stands with exposed brick and mortar represents a recitation that is bereft of aḥkām and makhārij. Once coated and painted, it comes to represent a complete recitation that is technically sound, albeit bereft of melody and tone. Lastly, a painted wall decorated with embellishments is like a recitation with tajweed which not only includes the features of tarteel but adds to that and creates a perfect recitation in line with the hadith where Rasulullah (SAW) proclaims: “There is nothing more beloved to me than the melodious recitation of the Qur’an.”

This page will be updated daily with general discussions on Tajweed revolving around the tilawah of Shehzada Husain bhaisaheb Burhanuddin Saheb (DM). Stay tuned for updates.