10 Tips Towards a Better Understanding of the Quran

I have written  a lot about ways to understand and connect to the Quran, including a series on thematic tafsir.
Here are general tips and resources that you can use in your journey to understand the final message from God to mankind:​

1- Download Bayan Quran App on IOS or Andriod

One of the best apps in giving a word-by-word easy translation, in addition to an opportunity to dive deeper into the meaning of every single word through the Library -> “Word Root” feature.

​2- Read the Translation

My favorite English translation is that by Mohammad Abdel Haleem; here’s a link to the PDF version, although I strongly recommend ordering your own version from here.

3- Analyze

Divide the chapter into sections, based on the topic, content, stories, theme, etc…

4- Zoom in

Sometimes you may feel like “zooming in” to a specific segment, verse, or even a word, in order to analyze its roots and appreciate the depth of the meaning of the Arabic and Quranic wording.

5- Zoom out

On the other hand, you can zoom out and look at the chapter from a “macro level”. You may check the unlocking Taraweeh series here for more information on thematic tafsir.  Also you can watch Ustath Nouman Ali Khan’s excellent series on thematic tafsir Get to know Surah …”

6- Write

In order to build a personal connection with the Quran, a very unique activity is to write your own thoughts, reflections, and action items BASED on the tafsir that you read.

You are not bringing something new or innovating in the Deen by doing so (this is a very common misconception). You are simply building your own Quran-o-pedia and you are constructing your personal map of Quranic wisdom. Check this link for a handout that I use in some of my Quran understanding workshops.

7- Collect

The Hashtag table, where you can link any verse in the Quran to your own custom “hashtags”.

8- Dive into the Tafsir

The summarized version of Ibn Kathir is a very good place to start. Check it out HERE!

9- Listen

Remember that Allah’s book was not revealed in a book format, but in a speech format that was meant to be recited, heard, and transmitted in an “audio” format… While writing the book and documenting it has saved it from going into waste, scholars have always raised the issue that it should not be kept as a book.

10- Join a Quran Class in Your Local Community

It does not have to be fancy or advanced, you don’t have to look for a super-scholar or an ijaza teacher (however if you have one in your community, NEVER let go of him/her). There are lots of barakah in reading and learning the Quran in groups and it adds a lot of spirituality to the experience.

From https://mhakeem.com/

About Dr. Mohannad Hakeem
Mohannad Hakeem, Ph.D.
Research Engineer - Engine Controls
Research and Innovation Center
Ford Motor Company