When I was taught that every Muslim must pray 5 times a day and recite the Holy Quran in their prayers in Arabic, I thought, “Wow! Muslims must be very intelligent!” For generations, many non-Arab natives have been able to read the Holy Quran, which is written in the Arabic language, without ever learning the language itself. Isn’t that remarkable? Many Muslims in non-native Arab countries are also Hafiz, a term to describe a person who has memorised the Holy Quran.
Millions of ordinary Muslims can only read and recite the Holy Quran without knowing the meaning of the surahs. If you open up this Holy book, you will not be able to read any greeting phrases that are commonly introduced in a language school. “Welcome!” That’s not how God speaks.
The Holy Quran is the only book that has the power to attract people to learn to read Arabic without force. It empowers the reader to want to memorise some of It’s verses for his prayers, discuss topics on Islam using his native tongue, sing nursery rhymes in Arabic and listen to Arabic music. If a Muslim parent wants his child to speak Arabic, the quickest way is to get the child to read, “Introduction To Reading Of The Holy Quran.” instead of “Learn To Speak Arabic For Kids”.
Learning begins with the alphabets (consonants and vowels). Then the intonation sounds of each alphabet when it is modified by using the phonetical symbols. Letters are later joined together to form short phrases that have no meaning in itself. The purpose is to practise producing pitch and intonation. Then the reader gets to progress further into longer phrases with more complex linking or running alphabets. When one has mastered reading running alphabets, he will begin the process of learning to read the Holy Quran beginning with the opening chapter called, “The Al-fatihah” or “The Opening”.
The book is called the “Muqaddam”, which contains mainly the short verses of the last chapter of the Holy Quran. Within a short period of time of reading the Muqaddam, it is possible to become familiar with the Arabic language. If one does not know how to read the short surahs independently, it means he does not have the skill the read the Holy Quran. Nonetheless, he would have mastered the basic components of reading, enough to perform his prayers but not to sustain him beyond rote memory. (Some readers prefer to use the ‘Iqra’ method which ensures faster sound recognition before learning to read Muqaddam. The latter is regarded as the traditional form of learning to read the Holy Quran, which has proven more effective in helping the reader to develop independence.)
It is apparent that reading the Holy Quran introduces Islam but not the Arabic language to readers. Readers may or may not develop an interest in learning Arabic. There are a few reasons:
1. the Holy Quran are the words of Allah, the God of Islam so it is not intended for communication between man and man, rather God and man.
2. there are rules to speaking proper Arabic, English or any language. The Holy Quran does not teach these rules; and
3. even though the Holy Quran has been translated in as many languages as there are believers, scholars are still discussing and learning the hidden meaning behind some of the Arabic phrases.
So, learning Arabic and learning the Holy Quran in Arabic are two separate matters. The former can be taught by any language teacher who may or may not be a Muslim. The latter, however, ought to be taught by a Muslim teacher.
An example of learning Arabic language can be found on this document:
Download Document here: Learn Arabic Sample Course
View the full course here:Arabic
An example of understanding Arabic in the Holy Quran can be found on this site, 80percentwords
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