Every word of the Quran is a miracle in itself. The poetic construction with underlying meanings leaves the reader astounded. Its flawless composition from the first letter until the last speaks perfection and supremacy. However, there are some chapters with a stature that is distinct from the others. It is not the human taste that decides the preference of a Surah. Instead, we learn about it from the Ahadith of Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) and the narrations by his companions.
One such Surah is Surah Al-Ikhlas. It is the 112th chapter of the Quran, containing four verses. Typically, we determine the vitality of a narrative by its length. Yet, in this case, Surah Al-Ikhlas has attained a prominent position in the Quran due to its subject. This Makki Surah sheds light on the concept of Tawheed, Oneness of Allah (SWT). It provides a brief yet comprehensive illustration of how our belief in Allah’s Oneness should be constructed.
During the early days of Islam, the Jews, Christians, and pagans from Makkah used to put forth irrelevant questions before our beloved Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him). It was then when Allah (SWT) revealed this Surah, commanding the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) to address all their queries.
You May Also Want to Read: The Virtues of Reciting Surah Mulk
Besides the subject, mere recitation of this Surah tags along with multiple rewards. Here are a few to ignite your motivation for an increased recitation of Surah Al-Ikhlas:
1. Equivalent to reading the whole Quran – 3 times recitation
Abu Sa’id al-Khudri (RA) narrates that a person heard a man reciting “Qul huwa Allahu ahad (Sura al-Ikhlas).” He was repeating the same Surah back to back. When the morning arrived, this listener went to the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) and related this to him. Apparently, the listener took the recitation of Surah Al-Ikhlas to be insignificant. Nonetheless, the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) disclosed a new avenue of information upon him. He (Peace Be Upon Him) said:
I take an oath by that Being in whose control is my life; it certainly equals one-third of the Qur’an. (Bukhari)
The same narrator also provides another statement made by the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) that acknowledges the similar reward (i.e., equals one-third of the Quran). He reports that once Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) said to his companions: “Are any of you unable to recite a third of the Qur’an in a night?” It was a laborious deed for them, so they replied, “Which of us is able to do that, Messenger of Allah (Peace Be Upon Him)?” He (Peace Be Upon Him) said:
[The surah] ‘Say: He is Allah, Absolute Oneness, Allah, the Everlasting Sustainer of all’ (112) constitutes a third of the Qur’an.’
(Sahih al-Bukhari 6:61 #534)
Hence, when a person recites Surah Al-Ikhlas three times, it brings him/her the reward of reading the whole Quran.
2. A Palace booked in Jannah upon reciting Surah Ikhlas – 10 times recitation
We struggle beyond our power to expand our material properties. The more lands and wealth a person possessed, the higher his status goes among people. What if Allah (SWT) tells you that you have a beautifully designed palace awaiting you in the Eternal World? There won’t be any taxes to pay, any worries to keep it clean – just live there as you like!
The idea sounds mesmerizing. Right?
Recitation of Surah Al-Ikhlas ensures you have your palace built in Jannah. From Muadh bin Jabal (RA), a companion reported from the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) who stated that:
Whoever reads “Qul huwa Allahu ahad (Sura al-Ikhlas)” until he finishes it ten times, then Allah (SWT) builds a Palace for him in Paradise as well as additional benefits.
Upon hearing this, Hazrat Umar (RA) replied, ‘Then we will have a lot of Palaces O Messenger of Allaah!’
Our beloved Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) replied: “Allah has more and what is better.”
3. Forgiveness of sins committed in the past 50 years – 200 times recitation daily
Sometimes, we are entirely engulfed in guilt. When the realization of our past mistakes hit us hard, we feel like Our Lord will abandon us in the Hereafter. It is natural to have such feelings. However, Allah (SWT) reminds us again and again in His Book that in a state of despair, we should turn to no one but Him (SWT). Knock at His doorstep, plead, seek forgiveness, and fix your mistakes.
One measure you can take while working on it is to recite Surah Al-Ikhlas 200 times daily. Hazrat Anas (RA) has said that the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) once stated:
If anyone recites 200 times every day Surah Ikhlas 200 of his (minor) sins committed over 50 years will be blotted out of his record; but, if he has to pay loan to anyone, that will not be forgiven.
It is to note that unpaid loans do not fall under the heading. This emphasizes the importance of paying your loans. For further clarification, you must go through the discussion about debts and loans mentioned in Surah Al-Baqarah.
We spend hours chit-chatting with our friends and family about useless issues. But when it comes to proclaiming a few words of Allah’s Book, we start making excuses about our busy schedules. Sadly, we fail to realize, these are the minutes well-spent. Recitation of a single verse from the Quran may become our ultimate savior on the Day of Judgment.
It is about time we take heed and seek refuge from Allah (SWT). The virtues and rewards associated with Surah Al-Ikhlas are, indeed, empowering. Let us all infuse its regular recitation in our daily schedules. May Allah (SWT) protect us and reward us beyond measures in the Hereafter. Aameen!