The Quranic EmphasisT
he Qur'an is a guide for every person, his teacher and mentor. Understanding it is therefore vital; otherwise it will remain no more than a sacrament. The crucial centrality of endeavors, personal endeavors, to open hearts and minds to the messages of the Qur'an is made abundantly clear by the Qur'an itself. We are confronted with the utter folly of keeping our hearts locked against our understanding of the Qur'an:
What, do they not ponder the Qur'an? Or, is it that there are locks on their hearts (Muhammad 47:24).
Therefore the invitation to bring reason and understanding to the Qur'an is spread on almost every page of it: Why you hear not? Why you see not? Why you think not? Why you reason not? Why you ponder not? Why you understand not? Why you take not to heart? To whom are these invitations addressed if not to every human being who possesses the faculties of hearing, seeing and thinking?
It is also emphatically declared that the Qur'an has been sent down to be understood:
A Book We have sent down, [it is] full of blessings, that men may ponder over its messages, and those who possess understanding may take them to heart (Sad 38: 29).
Likewise, the Qur'an praises as the true 'servants of the Most-merciful' (Ibadu 'r-Rahman).
Who, when they are reminded of the revelations of their Lord, fall not thereat deaf and blind (al-Furqan 25: 73).
Conversely, it castigates as worse than animals those who do not use their hearing, sight and hearts to listen, see and understand:
They have hearts, but they understand not with them; they have eyes, but they see not with them; they have ears but they hear not with them. They are like cattle; nay they are further astray. It is they who are the heedless (al-A'raf 7: 179).
You cannot gather the real blessings and treasures of the Qur'an unless you know its meaning, unless you understand what Allah is saying to you, unless you exert yourself personally to find that out.