Quran, the Muslims Holy Book
The Quran (English pronunciation: /kɔrˈɑːn/) (Arabic: القرآن al-qur’ān), literally meaning “the recitation”. Qur’an or Quran is the last revealed word of Allah, is the primary source of every Muslim’s faith and practice. The Quran was verbally revealed by Allah to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) through the angel Gabriel, gradually over a period of 23 years. The Quran is the only revealed book that has been protected by Allah from distortion or corruption.
Allah determined a kind of miracle for each prophet and the miracle of the prophet Mohammad (pbuh) is Quran. It deals with all the subjects that concern human beings, wisdom, doctrine, worship, instructive stories, the story of the other prophets, woman, law, transactions, etc., but its basic theme is the relationship between God and His creatures. At the same time, it provides guidelines and detailed teachings for a just society, proper human conduct, and an equitable economic system. Note that the Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in Arabic only, So, any Quranic translation, either in English or any other language, is neither the original Quran, nor a version of the Quran, but rather it is only a translation of the meaning of the Quran
How the holy Quran is revealed
Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) was elected by Allah to be the last prophet. After 3 years, in Ramadan month, at the night of Qadr, when Mohammad (pbuh) was praying in Hara cave (near Mecca) while he had stayed there for several days and nights, Gabriel revealed to him and Allah revealed Quran by this great angle to Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). Quran is sent to the prophet during 23 years, gradually.
Quran is divided to Surah and Aye (verse). Each Surah consists of several Ayes. Original meaning of Aye is sign or proof but miracle, advice and lesson are the meaning which mentioned for Aye in Quran:
…اَنّى قَدْ جِئْتُكُمْ بِايَةٍ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ…
I have come to you with a sign from your creator and nurturer…
إِنَّ فِي ذَٰلِكَ لَآيَةً لَّكُمْ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ
… Surely, therein is a sign for you, if you indeed are believers.
(Surah Al-e-Imran, verse 49)
Limitation of each Surah and Aye is determined by the prophet Mohammad (pbuh) and he had put them in a row according to the date of revelation. Quran is divided into 114 Surah.
The most of interpreters say the first Aye (verse) that revealed to the prophet was the first Aye of Surah Al-Alaq:
اقْرَأْ بِاسْمِ رَبِّكَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ
[o, Messenger] recite in the name of Allah who is your creator and nurturer and who created all creatures of the universe.
and the last Aye was the Aye 281 of Surah Baqareh
وَاتَّقُوا يَوْمًا تُرْجَعُونَ فِيهِ إِلَى اللَّـهِ ۖ ثُمَّ تُوَفَّىٰ كُلُّ نَفْسٍ مَّا كَسَبَتْ وَهُمْ لَا يُظْلَمُونَ
And be afraid of the day when you shall be brought back to Allah; then every person shall be paid in full what he has earned and none shall be dealt with unjustly.
It is quoted from Ibn Abbas that this was the last Aye that revealed to the prophet and he put that after the Aye 280 of Surah Al-Baqarah by the order of Gabriel.
The first complete Surah that was revealed was Fatiha and the last complete Surah was Al-Nasr.
The shortest Aye is “مُدْهامَّتانِ” (Surah Al Rahman, verse 64) and the longest is 282 of Al-Baqarah which contains more than 30 terms.
Each Surah begins with بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم (in the name of Allah) except Surah Al-Toubeh.
Surah Al-Naml has 2 “بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم” , one of them is for the beginning and the other related to the prophet Salomon’s letter which had written for Bilqis and his letter have been began by “بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم”.
The shortest Surah is Al-Kowthar with 3 verses and the longest Surah is Al-Baqarah with 286 verses.
There are some verses In 4 Surah of Quran that are known as Sajdah (Prostration) verses:
Verse 15 of Surah Al-Sajdah, verse 37 Surah Fussilat, verse 62 Surah Al-Najm, and verse 19 Surah Al-Alaq.
These 4 Surahs are named Aza’em and if anyone read or listens to these verses, it is compulsion to prostrate after finishing the verse, right away.
“Makki” and “Madani” Surahs
verses and Surahs of Quran are divided into main category, Makki (take place in Mecca, Surahs and verses which are revealed before Hijra of the prophet Mohammad (pbuh)) and Madani (take place in Medina, Surahs and verses which are revealed after Hijra of the prophet Mohammad(pbuh)). This division helps researches more and better. As it is said before, Quran is revealed during 23 years, through about 13 years of the prophet’s life, in Mecca and the rest in Medina.
Quran is like sea. Ordinary people watch the outside of the sea and they enjoy it. Even people who cannot swim, stay in the shore and enjoy watching and listening the sea. But people, who can swim, go into the deep like divers and just divers are the people who discover unique and worth full things.
In the most Surahs, Quran wants people to think to verses and get the valuable points of them because Quran is the last guideline book that is sent to the last prophet for all people in the whole world. Also the prophet Mohammad (pbuh) is mentioned in Torah and bible. (To see more, refer to the prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in Torah and Bible).
To see Surahs of Quran, refer to (Quran, software)
Quran is a book that can be interpreted in all centuries, clearly and it is just one of the miracles of Quran. This guideline book proves its divinity by itself, so it cannot be written by a human. By looking at the section “miracles of Quran”, you will find out more and more.