The month of Ramadhan is sacred because it is the month when the Holy Qur'an was revealed, and because it is the month containing Lailatul-Qadr. It is, therefore, appropriate to know a little about this Book, the greatest of all divine revelations, the best revelation the descendants of Adam (as) have ever received from their Lord.
The Messenger of Allah (S) is quoted on p. 261, Vol. 2, of al-Zamakhshari's Rabee’ al-Abrar as saying, "Allah Almighty read Surats Ta-Ha and Ya-Sin a thousand years before creating Adam, and when the angels heard it, they said, ‘Congratulations to those to whom such speech is revealed, and congratulations to the hearts that memorize it, and congratulations to the tongues that articulate it.'"
In the same reference, the Messenger of Allah (S) is quoted saying, "The hearts rust just as iron rusts." He (S) was asked, "O Messenger of Allah! What removes their rust?" He (S) said, "The recitation of the Qur'an and the remembrance of death." In one Qudsi hadith, the Almighty has said, "I shall give one who is too preoccupied with his recitation of the Qur'an to plead to Me the very best of what I give those who are grateful to Me."
Imam Ali (as) has said, "One who recites the Qur'an while standing during the prayers will receive a hundred good deeds for each verse he recites; if he recites it sitting during his prayers, he will receive fifty good deeds for each verse, and whoever recites it after having made his wudu will receive twenty-five good deeds for each verse, and one who recites it without wudu will receive ten good deeds for each verse he recites." One day, as al-Zamakhshari tells us on p. 264, Vol. 2, of his Rabee’ al-Abrar, the Messenger of Allah (S) was late in going back home. "What kept you so long from coming home?" Ayesha asked him.
He (S) said, "It is the recitation of a man whose voice is better (when reciting the Holy Qur'an) than anyone else I have heard." Then he (S) stood and listened to him for a good while then said, "He is Salim, a slave of Abu Huthayfah. Praise to Allah for the presence of people like him in my nation."
During the month of Ramadhan, Sufyan al-Thawri used to devote his time to the recitation of the Holy Qur'an, and Malik ibn Anas used to stop studying and researching hadith, abandon the company of scholars, and concentrate on reciting the Holy Qur'an instead, as we are told on pp. 257-258 of Vol. 2 of al-Zamakhshari's Rabi’ al-Abrar. In one of his sermons, Imam Ali (as) said the following about the Holy Qur'an:
Besides the Holy Qur'an, nobody should complain of needing anything else. One who is deprived of it cannot be described as having anything at all; so, seek in it the healing of your ailments, and solicit its assistance when you encounter a hardship, for it contains a cure for the worst of ailments: disbelief, hypocrisy, and misguidance. Plead to Allah through it instead of pleading to any of His creation. Nobody can seek Allah through anything better than it, and be admonished that it is an intercessor that will intercede on your behalf, and a speaker that speaks the truth.
For whomsoever the Holy Qur'an intercedes on the Day of Judgment, he will surely achieve intercession, and whoever seeks it to testify to his truthfulness will surely be regarded as a man of truth, for someone shall call on the Day of Judgment: "Everyone who cultivates is tried by what he cultivates except those who cultivate the Qur'an;" so be among those who cultivate and follow it, and make it the means to reach your Lord. Seek its advice regarding your souls, and compare your views with those of its own, and seek its help against yielding to your desires.1
The Imam (as) has also said, "One who recites the Qur'an then dies and enters the fire is among those who took Allah's signs lightly."
- 1. Rabee` al-Abrar fee Nusoos al-Akhbar, pp. 258-259.