The Revelation and Compilation of Quran – History Covered

The Revelation and Compilation of Quran – History Covered

There are numerous books produced by authors all across the world, which remain prominent for a time and then come other authors who reject them and point out the flaws in the writing of earlier writers. This is the case with every book except the Quran, which by now and forever has remained free of any flaw and potential accusations.

Quran is the Holy Book of Muslims and Muslims from all over the world revere it equally and turn towards it in times when they require moral or spiritual enlightenment. Another major reason why Muslims rely on Quran in every case is the fact that firstly it is revealed by Allah Almighty and secondly that it has remained the same since its revelation and not even a single letter has changed.

discusses the very same aspect of Quran by describing its revelation and the measures taken to preserve it over the Muslim history.

Merits OF Quran:

Before moving on to the revelation and preservation of Quran it is important that a person understands the merits of Quran and what Allah Almighty has said about its preservation and divine nature in Quran. In Quran, Allah Almighty says:

Nazool e Quran History

“…..And we have sent down to thee the Book explaining all things, a guide, a mercy and glad tidings to Muslims.” (16:89)

Thus, Quran is a book of guidance, mercy and glad tidings. Moreover, besides this belief, a Muslim must also believe in Quran that it is above and free from any doubt. In Quran, Allah says:

None Book can Compete Quran

“This is the book: it is guidance sure, without doubt.” (2:2)

Thus, a Muslim must not have any doubt on whatever is said in Quran. Moreover, as  far as the authenticity of Quran in terms of its preservation is concerned, Allah Almighty says in Quran:

Protection of Quran

“We have without doubt, sent down the message; And We will assuredly guard it (from corruption).” (15:9)

Therefore, the Quran in its present form is the same as it was revealed and there can be no doubt regarding its being Divine in nature and a source of guidance without any doubt or reservation.

Revelation of Quran:

Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in the form of Wahi which was made open to Him by Allah Almighty in different forms, either during sleep, while awake, with imprint on His heart, or Gabriel brought the verses in his original or humanly form from time to time.

The process of revelation of Quran started in the month of Ramadan as Allah Almighty says about it in Quran in the following way:

Ramadan and Quran

“Ramadhan is the (month) in which we sent down the Quran…” (2:185)

Furthermore, Allah Almighty also explains the reason behind the in-parts revelation of Quran over a period of 23 years. Allah says in Quran:

Quran Revealed Historical Info

“(It is) a Quran which we have divided (into parts from time to time), in order that thou mightiest recite it to men. At intervals we have revealed it by stages.”  (17:106)

Therefore there was a gradual process of revelation where the verses were revealed at specific instances to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) making it easy to disperse and disseminate the information to the followers.

The Compilation of Quran:

When it comes to compilation of Quran, it has been divided into specific parts and eras in the history where different Muslim rulers at different times made different contributions to make the compilation of Quran better and more reliable. The lines below discuss the different phases of compilation of Quran throughout the Islamic history which has made it possible to view and read Quran in its present form.

A) During The Time Of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH):

The compilation and recording of Quran started in the time of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Whenever Prophet (PBUH) would receive a revelation, He would narrate it to the Companions present and then the Companions would memorize it and then disperse it to other people. Thus this way, the primary source of compilation of Quran was its memorization. To know how to memorize the Holy Quran, you are advised to look into this blog post entailing useful tips.

Oral memorization and recitation was the tradition of that time, therefore, Quran was primarily memorized as a means of its preservation. However, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) also paid attention towards its ascribing as well and the literate companions who knew how to write they would record the revelations on different types of materials.

The scribers would scribe the verses on leather skin, parchments of paper and even on leafs as well to ensure that the revelations were documented. Therefore, the initial compilation was started in the life of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and according to some historians, the compilation was even completed in the life of Prophet (PBUH) as well.

B) In The Reign Of Hazrat Abu Bakkar (RA):

After Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in whose life Quran was written down but still was dispersed and not in the book form, the first major development towards compilation of it in the book form took place during the reign of Hazrat Abu Bakkar’s (RA) Caliphate.

During his Caliphate, a person in the distant part of Arabia made the claim of being the prophet, in response to it, Abu Bakkar (RA) sent a Muslim army where a bloody battle was fought to bring the false claimer to justice. During the battle, in Muslim casualties there was a high number of Huffaz (person who memorize Quran). Seeing the increasing number of casualities of Huffaz, Hazrat Umar (RA) became concerned and he advised Abu Bakkar (RA) to pay heed towards the matter and work towards compilation of Quran in a book form.

Although Hazrat Abu Bakkar (RA) resisted the suggestion initially as he gave the argument that how can they compile the Quran in book form if it were not done in the life of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). However later on he had a change of heart and ordered Hazrat Zain bin Saabit (RA) to be the chief scriber and work on compiling the Quran in a book form.

After listening to various Huffaz, cross referencing it with the different written verses of Quran found on tree leafs, parches and leather skins, he compiled a final copy of Quran which was then presented to Hazrat Abu Bakkar (RA). Hence the first Book version of Quran was compiled in the life of Hazrat Abu Bakkar (RA).

C) In the Reign Of Hazrat Usman (RA):

In the reign of Hazrat Usman (RA) Islam was expanding to farfetched corners of the world starting from Arabia to the central Asia in countries like Armenia and Azerbaijan. With the spread of it, people from non-Arabic cultures also became Muslims and it was quite natural that Arabic was not their mother tongue.

Due to this difference in mother tongue and lack of exposure to Arabic, the variation in pronunciation of Arabic in general and Quran in particular was quite natural. However, the situation once surfaced was quite alarming and Hazrat Usman (RA) took notice of it, because if it were not dealt at the initial state, it would give raise to controversy.

To eliminate this issue, Hazrat Usman (RA) requested Hazrat Hafsa (RA) to provide the earlier compilation of Quran so that more copies could be made out of it. Moreover, He also formed a committee consisting of Hazrat Zain bin Haris (RA) and a few other Companions to make sure that they agree on the pronunciation of the original copy and produce more versions of that copy in the very same way.

Thus, in the reign of Hazrat Usman (RA) copies of Quran were produced with a single version and then were distributed to all the Muslim dominions across the Asia.

D) The Introduction of I’Jam:

I’jam refers to the diacritical points that are put on alphabets in order to differentiate them from other alphabets of the same shape so that proper pronunciation of the words could be produced. Although Hzrat Usman (RA) made the copies of Quran but it was without any diacritical points, thus the new convert Muslims found it hard to differentiate between pronunciation of alphabets and faced confusion.

Pertaining to this issue, in the reign of Abdal Malik, it was Al-Hajjaj who was the governor of Iraq who took the responsibility of incorporating I’jam on the alphabets of Quran. Therefore, he assigned the duty to renowned scholars of that time to put I’jam on Quran which ensured that the Tajweed rules were followed in quran recitation, and the quran that we read now with tajweed is of the same form which was produced in the time of Hajjaj.

Conclusion:

In a nutshell, although Allah Almighty Himself took the responsibility of preserving Quran, however, He had the work done by humans where different rulers in different times made efforts to make sure that Quran was preserved and it was in a form that was universal with no deviation whatsoever in terms of its textual content