Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Transformed By the Qur'an

I usually insist, when people ask me why I embraced Islam, on the importance for me of reading the Qur'an myself. While there are less relevant details I try to omit--why I felt compelled to read it in the first place, for instance--I focus on this point because it is truly what changed my heart.

Obviously, I read a translation. And even then, there's much I read which I still didn't understand. But from the first page, I read voraciously, daily, whenever I had the time. I didn't read a passage here or there, or hear random quotations fired like bullets by a preacher, but I had a personal, intimate dialogue with the Qur'an myself.

I don't think it's possible to have a similar dialogue with any other book--the miraculous nature of the Qur'an and its compelling inimitable rhetoric capture the mind and the heart of the reader. And so it's not surprising that those who hear the revelation and disbelieve in it are so scorned. At the same time, can I ever be grateful enough to have been guided by means of the Qur'an? That my heart was opened to its call?