QUESTION: I am always hearing people recommend the recitation of various chapters verses of the Quran as a prescription for attaining certain goals or for the relief from various problems and afflictions. Should I act upon all of these recommendations?
ANSWER: Please. be aware that most of what people claim about reciting particular chapters and verses of the Quran on particular occasions is completely unsubstantiated by the hadeeth. Besides those completely unsubstantiated claims, there are a large number of fabricated and spurious hadeeth that recommend the recitation of certain verses for certain objectives. What is authentic in this regard is quite limited by comparison.
Widespread But Fabricated
As an illustrative example of how this fabrication became so wide spread, Imaam al-Iraqi (RAH) relates in his book Sharh Muqaddimah Ibn ai-Salah the following story from Muammal:
"A shaykh related to me this hadeeth (meaning a hadeeth listing the virtues of the Quran chapter by chapter) and I asked the shaykh: "Who related this to you?" He said:
"A man in Madain related it to me and he is still living."
So I travelled to see him and asked him:
"Who related this to you?"
"A shaykh in Wasit narrated it to me and he is still living.
So I travelled there to see him and was told:
"A shaykh in Basra related it to me.
"Then I travelled there to him and he said:
"A shaykh in Abbadan related it to me."
I travelled there (to Abbadan) to see him and he took me by the hand and led me into a house. Thereupon I saw a group of Sufis in the company of a shaykh. He said:
"This is the shaykh who related it to me."
I then asked him:
"Oh shaykh! And who related it to you? "
"No one related it to me. However, I saw that the people have become neglectful of the Quran, so I fabricated for them this hadeeth to draw their hearts back to the Quran."
After relating this story, al- lraqilhen says:
"It is likely that this man spent around three months traveling in order to verify the narration of this sing!e hadeeth."
This story is related by Ibn Hibban in al-Majruhin (1/29), Ibn Abd al-Barr in al-Tamhid (1/48-49), al-Khatib al-Baghdad in al-Rihlah (59), and many others. This story shows us just how concerned the scholars of the past were to verify the reports that people attributed to the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam).
Our sincerest advice to you is not to pay any heed to such claims that people make unless they are willing to substantiate their claims with their evidence. If they cannot even cite their sources from the hadeeth literature, then it is very difficult for you to go back and verify where these people are coming from. If they at least cite the text of the hadeeth and in which books it is to be found, it becomes possible to check up on the hadeeths authenticity. Otherwise, these claims are endless and trying to verify them all is extremely time consuming. As for some of what is authentic, we have the following (among others):
Surah al-Baqarah: 255 (Ayah al-Kursi) For this, we have the hadeeth of Abu Hurayrah, which reads in part: I said: "He said to me, When you go to bed, recite Ayah al-Kursi to the end. He said to me: You will have someone guarding over you from Allah and the devils will not come near you until the morning." The Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) said:
"He told you the truth even though he is a liar. Do you know whom you were speaking with on these three days, Abu Hurayrah?! I said: "No." The Prophet said: "It was Satan." [Sahih al-Bukhari(3275)]
Surah a-Baqarah: 285-286 The Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) said: "The last two verses of Surah al-Baqarah, whoever reads them at night, they shall suffice him." (Bukhaari)
Surah al-lkhlas, Surah al-Falaq, and Surah al-Nas. The Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) advised us to read these three chapters of the Quran thrice when going to sleep at night and thrice when waking up in the morning. He said: "They will suffice you from all afflictions." (Abu Daawuud) And Allah knows best.
This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited