Hereunder the translation of some noble narratives are related to complete the advantage and to have the blessings of the sayings of the [Prophet's] pure progeny:
The noble al-Kāfī on the authority of Sa'd, quotes Imām al-Bāqir ('a) to have said: “O Sa'd, learn the Qur'an, for it comes on the Resurrection Day in the best of forms,” then he added to the same effect, saying that it would pass through each rank of the masses of the believers, the martyrs, the prophets and the ranks of the angels, and all of them say: “This is brighter than us,” until the Messenger of Allah (s) introduces it… as the hadīth goes.1
Imām as-Sādiq ('a) is quoted to have said: “When Allah, the Exalted, gathers all the first and the last peoples, they suddenly see a person proceeding, having an image the better of which has never been seen before.”2
There are many other hadīths of similar content that prove the sayings of the people of knowledge to the effect that for each being in this world there is a matching image in the Hereafter.
From the hadīths of this chapter it is deduced that the deeds also have their images in that world. The noble al-Kāfī, on the authority of Imām al-Bāqir ('a), says: “The Messenger of Allah (s) said: “I, the Book of Allah and my progeny will be the first to come to the Almighty, the Omnipotent, then my ummah will come after us. Then I ask: What did you do with the Book of Allah and my Ahl al-Bayt?”3
In another hadīth, the Almighty, the Glorified, says to the Qur'an: “By My Omnipotence and Majesty, and by My High State, I will surely honor him who has honored you, and I will disdain him who has disdained you.”4
We must know that if we did not revive the precepts and the teachings of the Qur'an by putting them to practice and understanding their truth, we would not be able to reply the question of Allah's Messenger on that day. Which disdain is worse than discarding its objectives and neglecting its calls? Honoring the Qur'an and its people, who are the infallible Ahl al-Bayt, is not done only by kissing its cover or their holy shrines.
This is a weak sign of honoring and respecting, which will only be acceptable if done according to its instructions and their teachings. Otherwise they would be more like scorning and sporting. Noble hadīths strongly warn those who recite the Qur'an and then do not practically follow its teachings.
In 'Iqāb al-A'māl, by Shaykh as-Sadūq (may Allah be pleased with him), quoting the Messenger of Allah (s), it is stated that he said in a hadīth: “The one who teaches the Qur'an and does not act according to it, and loves this world and prefers worldly pleasures to it, is worthy of Allah's wrath and is placed on the same level with the Jews and the Christians who threw the Book of Allah behind their backs.
The one who recites the Qur'an with the intention of obtaining reputation [sum'ah] and mundane gains will meet Allah with a bony, fleshless face, and the Qur'an will slap his nape to push him into the fire and let him join those before him. And the one who recites the Qur'an without following its instructions, will be raised blind on the Resurrection Day. He will ask: 'O my Lord, why have You raised me blind whereas I was a seeing one?' He will reply:
'It is so because our signs came to you but you forgot them, and so you are forgotten this day'5
Then he is ordered to be thrown into the Fire. But the one who recites the Qur'an for the pleasure of Allah and for learning the features of the religion, his will be a reward, the equal of the reward given to all the angels and the prophets and Messengers ('a).
“The one who learns the Qur'an to show off, seeking reputation by way of arguing with the fools, to take pride in his knowledge against the scholars and to seek with it mundane matters, Allah, on the Resurrection Day, will separate all his bones from one another, and there will be no torture in the Fire severer than his, and there will be no sort of torment unless he is subjected to it, owing to Allah's strong anger and displeasure.
“If the one who learns the Qur'an is humble with his knowledge, teaches the servants of Allah and asks Allah for whatever reward there is with Him, there will be in Paradise no one whose reward is more than his, and there will be in Paradise no high rank and lofty state unless his share of it is higher and his state is loftier.”6
Concerning meditating on the meaning of the Qur'an, learning lessons from it and being affected by it there are many narratives, such as the hadīth in the noble al-Kāfī, on the authority of Imām as-Sādiq ('a), that he said: “It is in this Qur'an the stand of the guiding light and the torches for the dark nights. So, let the scrutinizer roam with his wide open eyes to see clearly, because thinking is the life of the discerning heart, like the enlightened one who walks with light in the dark.”7
The Imām means that as man needs common light to see his way in the dark so as not to fall over in a precipice, with the Qur'an, which is the light that guides and the torch which lights the road of gnosticism and faith, he is to advance on the dark road to the Hereafter and to Allah so as not to tumble down into devastating precipices.
In Ma'āniy 'ul-Akhbār there is a hadīth from Imām 'Alī ('a) saying: “The true jurisprudent is the one who would not leave the Qur'an reluctantly and turn to something else. Beware that there is no good in a knowledge without understanding; there is no good in the reciting without contemplation; and there is no good in a worship without deep knowledge of it.”8
In al-Khisāl and Ma'āniy 'ul-Akhbār, the Messenger of Allah (s) is quoted to have said: “The bearers of the Qur'an are the informed ones ['urafā] among the people of Paradise.”9 It is obvious what is meant by “the bearers” of the Qur'an. It means the bearers of the Qur'anic knowledge and teachings, the result of which in the Hereafter is to regard them among the learned and the people of heart. To merely bear the external form of the Qur'an, without getting its lessons and being benefited by its teachings, and to convey its knowledge and admonitions, without putting its precepts and laws into application, would be like that which is said by Allah, the Exalted:
“The likeness of those who are entrusted with the Torah, yet they apply it not, is as the likeness of the ass carrying books.”10
Noble hadīths on the Glorious Qur'an, its affairs and disciplines are too many to be contained in this small book. Peace be upon Muhammad and his progeny.