Thursday, August 21, 2008


My tarannum training had taught me that form was nothing without substance – tajwid was more important than the soulful tunes to which the Qur’an is recited. Tajwid determines the proper pronunciation and even the meaning of the Holy Book.

So I had tried my best to learn from a variety of Ustazes on tajwid rules. Unfortunately, I only managed to learn bits and pieces – the major rules. The “exceptions” or ghaarib I did not know, let alone think it was important. The same applied to my wife, who also strove to perfect her tajwid more than her tarannum. However, we both wanted to learn and teach tajwid, and in this certification-crazed milieu that we reside in, we wanted some certification to gain some credibility in the community.

By chance, my wife began to attend this new intermediate-level tajwid class at Al-Falah mosque, taught by an experienced and recognized Ustaz in the field of tajwid. He saw that she had as much or more knowledge than the rest in the class, and so invited her to his special training programme for teachers wishing to teach tajwid to others. It so happened that the training programme included a tajwid certification test that was conducted by an Ustaz from Malaysia, and this happened only once every 2 or 3 years.

My wife (bless her heart) asked if her husband could join, whose credentials included a few failed attempts at “musabakahs”. The Ustaz agreed, and very soon, my wife and I found ourselves learning more intricacies and nuances of tajwid in 2 sessions than we had ever learned in the past few years! We also found ourselves preparing hurriedly for a test we would probably not pass.

The day came, and the test happened. I made a major mistake on one of the rules (although I knew the essence of it). The tester explained the folly of my ways, and asked me to recite a few more verses. After we finished, as I told myself to try harder to pass at the next attempt, the tester shocked me with a soft whisper: “pass”. I praised God, thanked him and left the room. My wife too passed, much to our relief.

Now the challenge has been put to us – to spread the knowledge we’ve gained, to the rest of my community. Acceptance, willingness to change, and credibility are issues I have to grapple with. But we will try our best.

1 comment:

the seeker said...


With new credentials, comes more responsibility.