Ruling on learning the Qur’an without teaching it

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As-Salaamu-Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
I memorised the Qur’an eight years ago, but I have not taught it to people, because I did not find anyone who called me to teach the Qur’an. Am I sinning because of that? What are the duties of the hafiz who has memorised the Qur’an?
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Praise be to Allah.


Learning and teaching the Qur’an are among the noblest and best of good deeds, because the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “The best of you are those who learn the Qur’an and teach it.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari (5027) 

It was narrated from Abu Umaamah al-Baahili from the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) that he said: “The virtue of the learned man over the worshipper is like my virtue over the least of you. Verily Allah and His Angels and the inhabitants of the heavens and the earths, even the ant in its hole and even the fish send blessings upon the one who teaches the people good.”

Narrated by at-Tirmidhi (2685); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh at-Tirmidhi. 

Undoubtedly the one who teaches the people Qur’an is teaching the people good, and in fact he opens to them the greatest doors of goodness. 


Teaching the Qur’an is a communal obligation (fard kifaayah). If there is someone in your city who is teaching people the Qur’an, then there is no sin on you, but you are missing out on a great deal of virtue. 

If there is no one who can teach the people Qur’an except you, then it is obligatory for you to teach them, and if you do not do that then you are sinning and you must repent. 

An-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said: 

Teaching learners is a communal obligation; if there is no one who is qualified to do it except one, then it becomes an individual obligation. If there are a number of people who could do that, then teaching may be done by some of them, but if they all refuse they are all sinning; however if some of them undertake to do it, the rest are absolved of blame. If one of them is asked to do that and he refuses, then the more correct view is that he is not sinning, but it is makrooh for him to do that, unless he has an excuse.

End quote from at-Tibyaan fi Adaab Hamalat al-Qur’an (p. 41-42). 

If you want to do that type of good, then do not sit and wait for people to come to you so that they can learn from you; rather you should go to them yourself and call them to learn and memorise, and encourage them to do that by explaining to them the virtue and honour thereof. For that is good for you and for them, and it will help you not to forget, even if you cannot find anyone but small children. You can also look for memorisation schools (dar at-tahfeez) or memorisation circles in the mosques, and join them. 


The hafiz who has memorised the Qur’an should stand out from other people. The one whom Allah has enabled to attain this virtue must ascend thereby, otherwise there would be no difference between him and other people. We will quote here some of the etiquette that the hafiz who has memorised the Book of Allah should follow, which includes the following: 

·His intention should be only for the sake of Allah when he memorises, recites and teaches.

·He should frequently review and revise the Qur’an so that he does not forget it or forget any part of it.

·He should not intend thereby to attain any worldly goal of wealth or leadership or status, or to think of himself as being above his peers, or to earn praise from people or to attract people to him and the like.

·He should strive hard to make his character be the Qur’an, following the example of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him.

·He should be keen to teach it to people, call people to it, helps them memorise it and guide them to the morals and manners that it promotes.

·He should be kind to the one who is learning it from him; he should welcome him and treat him nicely.

·He should act in accordance with the Qur’an and not go against its rulings or teachings; he should not be one of those who memorise its words but overstep its limits. The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “The Qur’an may be evidence for you or against you.” Narrated by Muslim (223).

It was narrated in a saheeh report that Ibn Mas‘ood said: If one of us learned ten verses, he would not move on from them until he understood their meanings and acted upon them. End quote from Tafseer at-Tabari (1/80). 

Abu ‘Abd ar-Rahmaan as-Sulami said: Those who used to teach us Qur’an told us that they used to learn it from the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), and when they learned ten verses, they would not move on from them until they acted upon what they contained of deeds. So we learned the Qur’an and how to act upon it at the same time. End quote from Tafseer at-Tabari (1/80) 

·His nights should be different from the nights of other people. He should get up at night to offer the night prayers (qiyaam), as much as Allah enables him to do. For the people of the Qur’an among the early generations were the people of qiyaam al-layl (night prayers) and those who conversed with Allah in the time before dawn.

We advise you to acquire two great and important books concerning this matter. The first is Akhlaaq Hamalat al-Qur’an by Imam al-Aajurri (may Allah have mercy on him), and the second is at-Tibyaan fi Adaab Hamalat al-Qur’an by Imam an-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him). You should be keen to acquire them, study them and benefit from their contents. 

For more information, please see the answer to question no. 127146

And Allah knows best.

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah's Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

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