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Rectifying Quranic Recitation Mistakes of the Elders

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

Answered by: Maulana Mohammed Dilwar Hussain


I am a 14-year-old boy (who has hit maturity). I have an issue in my local masjid where the elders read the Quran with mistakes to the extent that sometimes the meaning is changed into kufr meanings. My question is that am I allowed to correct them when I hear the mistake, knowing that it changed the meaning into a kufr meaning?

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful


I pray that Allāh Ta’ālā grants you even more understanding and love for the noble Qur’ān. Ameen. The concern you are showing is definitely reward-worthy and the fact that you are able to recognise and differentiate between mistakes is even more so amazing for someone as young as you.

The Prophet ﷺ said, “Such a person who recites the Qur’ān and memorises it, will be with the noble righteous scribes (in Heaven) (i.e., the angels). And such a person who exerts himself to learn the Qur’ān by heart, and recites it with great difficulty, will be given double the rewards.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari; Hadith 4937] [1]

He ﷺ has also said, ” He who finds it hard (to recite the Qur’ān) will be given double the rewards.” [Sahih Al-Muslim; Hadith 798] [2]

From these two narrations, we see the great importance of attempting to recite the noble Qur’ān. Some of us are fortunate enough that we are able to recite with ease, whereas others will spend a lifetime trying to recite correctly but always reciting with difficulty. Such people should not become despondent as Allāh Ta’ālā has prescribed double the reward for them. Hence, we must not discourage them from trying. Their reward is in their efforts.

The Prophet ﷺ also said, “The best among you (Muslims) are those who learn the Qur’ān and teach it.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari; Hadith 5027] [3]

So, with this said, it is also paramount that we recite correctly and free from errors. Thus, as the above Hadith states, there is great reward in teaching people the noble Qur’ān. If you are able to correct them, then you should attempt to correct them. While doing this, it is important to consider the following Hadith;

The Prophet ﷺ said: “He is not one of us, who does not have mercy on our young and does not respect our elders.” [Sunan At-Tirmizi; Hadith 1919] [4]

Whenever we address our elders, we must do so with respect and humility. We must be careful not to address them in a manner that could be deemed disrespectful or rude. Whenever trying to correct an elder, it is normally more appropriate to not correct them directly but using Hikmah (wisdom). This way their honour will be left intact and they will not feel disrespected by a youngster.

A possible method you could apply when trying to correct them is to say, “uncle, can you please listen to me reciting the verse and check if I make a mistake.” Then, when you recite correctly, they should be able to pick up on their own mistake. If they still do not pick up on the mistake, you will now have an opportunity to point out the mistake without them feeling disrespected. After this has happened once, their guard should be lowered towards you and any subsequent attempts to correct them should go down easier as a level of rapport has now been built.

Only Allāh Ta’ālā knows best.

Written by Maulana Mohammed Dilwar Hussain

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

[1]حَدَّثَنَا آدَمُ، حَدَّثَنَا شُعْبَةُ، حَدَّثَنَا قَتَادَةُ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ زُرَارَةَ بْنَ أَوْفَى، يُحَدِّثُ عَنْ سَعْدِ بْنِ هِشَامٍ، عَنْ عَائِشَةَ، عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ مَثَلُ الَّذِي يَقْرَأُ الْقُرْآنَ وَهْوَ حَافِظٌ لَهُ مَعَ السَّفَرَةِ الْكِرَامِ الْبَرَرَةِ، وَمَثَلُ الَّذِي يَقْرَأُ الْقُرْآنَ وَهْوَ يَتَعَاهَدُهُ وَهْوَ عَلَيْهِ شَدِيدٌ، فَلَهُ أَجْرَانِ ‏”‏‏.‏

[2]وَحَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ الْمُثَنَّى، حَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ أَبِي عَدِيٍّ، عَنْ سَعِيدٍ، ح وَحَدَّثَنَا أَبُو بَكْرِ، بْنُ أَبِي شَيْبَةَ حَدَّثَنَا وَكِيعٌ، عَنْ هِشَامٍ الدَّسْتَوَائِيِّ، كِلاَهُمَا عَنْ قَتَادَةَ، بِهَذَا الإِسْنَادِ ‏.‏ وَقَالَ فِي حَدِيثِ وَكِيعٍ ‏ “‏ وَالَّذِي يَقْرَأُ وَهُوَ يَشْتَدُّ عَلَيْهِ لَهُ أَجْرَانِ ‏”‏ ‏.‏

[3] حَجَّاجُ بْنُ مِنْهَالٍ، حَدَّثَنَا شُعْبَةُ، قَالَ أَخْبَرَنِي عَلْقَمَةُ بْنُ مَرْثَدٍ، سَمِعْتُ سَعْدَ بْنَ عُبَيْدَةَ، عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ السُّلَمِيِّ، عَنْ عُثْمَانَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ خَيْرُكُمْ مَنْ تَعَلَّمَ الْقُرْآنَ وَعَلَّمَهُ ‏”‏‏.‏ قَالَ وَأَقْرَأَ أَبُو عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ فِي إِمْرَةِ عُثْمَانَ حَتَّى كَانَ الْحَجَّاجُ، قَالَ وَذَاكَ الَّذِي أَقْعَدَنِي مَقْعَدِي هَذَا‏.‏

[4]حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ مَرْزُوقٍ الْبَصْرِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا عُبَيْدُ بْنُ وَاقِدٍ، عَنْ زَرْبِيٍّ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ أَنَسَ بْنَ مَالِكٍ، يَقُولُ جَاءَ شَيْخٌ يُرِيدُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَأَبْطَأَ الْقَوْمُ عَنْهُ أَنْ يُوَسِّعُوا لَهُ فَقَالَ النَّبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ “‏ لَيْسَ مِنَّا مَنْ لَمْ يَرْحَمْ صَغِيرَنَا وَيُوَقِّرْ كَبِيرَنَا ‏”‏ ‏.‏ قَالَ وَفِي الْبَابِ عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ عَمْرٍو وَأَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ وَابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ وَأَبِي أُمَامَةَ ‏.‏ قَالَ أَبُو عِيسَى هَذَا حَدِيثٌ غَرِيبٌ ‏.‏ وَزَرْبِيٌّ لَهُ أَحَادِيثُ مَنَاكِيرُ عَنْ أَنَسِ بْنِ مَالِكٍ وَغَيْرِهِ ‏.‏

This answer was collected from DarulIftaBirmingham.co.uk, which is run under the supervision of Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah from the United Kingdom.

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