In Surah Al-Mutaffifin, Allah(swt) talks about a competition that the believers must partake in – the race to drink from the nectar of Jannah which is specially preserved for the most righteous - a drink which is sealed with a special musk and mixed with Tasneem, and none can drink of it except those nearest to Allah. Allah(swt) refers to the Righteous as ‘the Abraar’ – who will be in lofty places in Jannah.
February 23, 2018 will remain a very special day for our young achiever, Abraar Jamaluddin. This Friday morning, he recited the last few pages of the Holy Quran from memory to his Sheikh Abdelkarim Edghouch and attained the honorable status of a Hafidh of the Quran. It had taken him 18 months to commit the book of Allah to heart from end to end. Subhan Allah!
On this day, Abraar was 13 years, 3 months and 19 days old.
What does it take to become a Hafidh?
‘It requires a lot of focus, dedication and hard work’, says Sister Yasmeen, Abraar’ s mother. ‘Qualities that Abraar had displayed all through his school years from Goddard School where he started to his six years in the Villanova Academy of Honor Studies in PA’, she says proudly. He had always been attentive in class and very obedient to his teachers. His devotion and full commitment to his class assignments impressed them all.
Achieving his goal also required some real personal sacrifices – no weekend breaks for Quran memorization, no TV and little to no electronics. He had to memorize a minimum of 1 to 1.5 pages of the Holy Quran each day and stay on top of all that he had memorized up to that point. Passing on a day meant reciting to his Sheikh without pauses or mistakes. And this for each day of the 18-month journey!
In addition, Abraar also continued his regular school studies and passed the Texas STAAR exams for his 7th and 8th grades with A/A+ scores.
‘Winning the first prize in the Iqra Quran Competition in PA in year 2016 motivated me’ recalls Abraar. ‘I wanted to give it my full attention and memorize the entire Quran quickly. I loved reciting the Quran with proper tajweed and with a good voice’.
Abraar also received a lot of encouragement from his teachers. ‘Abraar is Masha-Allah’ says Sister Zoulaikha who taught Abraar in the initial years in VAHS and laid the foundation for his good tajweed. ‘I would love to make Abraar memorize the entire Quran’ said Sister Laila, Abraar’ s first Quran Hifdh teacher, ‘His recitation is so good, Masha-Allah’.
His other interests
Abraar loves to read and play too – computer games, soccer, cricket and basketball – cricket being his most favorite. His interest in playing extends beyond the play ground to a wealth of information about the game, the players and the playing countries. ‘I was talking to Abraar about cricket and I’m very impressed with how thorough he is with the techniques of the game, the different formats and the history of each and every player’, recalls Dr. Omer, a family friend from VAHS.
'I like to listen to Abraar’ s recitation’, says Sheikh Abdelkarim proudly. ‘He listened to me to learn and now we all love to listen to him’. Sheikh Abdelkarim is himself an internationally renowned Qari of the Holy Quran from Morocco. He is also the director of Tanzeel Academy in Irving, Texas, the full-time Hifdh school Abraar graduated from.
Abraar led the Taraweeh prayers during Ramadhan in Masjid Ar Rahman, Coatesville and enthralled the community with his recitation. He also recited in ISCC in West Chester, ISGVF in Devon and in VAHS in Villanova, PA where he went to school. ‘We are very proud of Hafidh Abraar’ says Dr. Mustafa, Director of VAHS. He is happy Abraar became the first Hafidh from his Academy.
‘But I’m not a Sheikh yet’, Abraar tells me humbly. ‘I have a long way to go. I want to properly learn all the 10 Riwayaat. And that is my next goal Insha-Allah’, he says.
May Allah(swt) protect him and make him among the Righteous people of Jannah. Aameen.
Abraar currently lives in Irving, Texas with his parents where he is pursuing his Ijaza in Hafs with Sheikh AbdelKarim. His twin sisters, Ayesha and Fatima live in PA and IL respectively with their husbands. In his spare time, Abraar loves to face-time with his one-year old niece Noor in Chicago.