The Tajweed Trap

Let me pre-face this article with a dis-claimer…

“Yes, tajweed (correct Quran recitation) is an important skill; Yes, tajweed is an essential part of your journey through the Quran; And No, you absolutely should not stop your tajweed classes…”

Good, now that’s out of the way, let me let you in on a little-know ‘trap’ many of us get caught in when it comes to studying the Quran, and especially tajweed…


This may sound familiar to you…

You want to understand what the Quran says so you can connect with Allah, and transform your life with the Quran, so….

You do the logical thing: try taking Arabic classes only to realise that you need to be able to read the Arabic script.

When you go to your masjid, Islamic centre or Arabic course the teacher tells you that the Quran is the highest level of Arabic, and in fact just by slightly mis-pronouncing a word or a letter, you can completely change the meaning of a verse (scary, but true!)

So, you follow their advice and decide to “learn tajweed correctly”, and start taking some tajweed classes.

That was 5 years ago. And you’re still in the tajweed class. And you still don’t understand a word of what you’re reciting… AND WORST OF ALL…

…the belief that Quranic Arabic takes a life-time to learn is getting stronger and stronger, whilst your resolve to do it is getting weaker and weaker.

Has this ever happened to you? Is this why you still don’t understand the Quran, even though you decided to years ago? And do you see what just happened there?

Originally the goal was to understand the Quran, but because you got ‘distracted’ with tajweed (an Islamic science which you could spend your whole life studying, like all Islamic sciences), you left your original goal.

The truth is, the original advice was correct, and incorrect at the same time. Here is…
How to reach the Tajweed Goal and avoid the TRAP

Yes, you absolutely MUST sort your tajweed out because you could be mis-pronouncing certain verses, and changing the meaning.

And No, this does not mean taking tajweed lessons for the rest of your life, and never studying Quranic Arabic.

((In fact, logically, if you knew what you were reciting and if you knew basic grammar, you would know automatically if a verse in the Quran has a major mistake in it… for example…

If you know a the subject from the object of the verb, and you know which should end in ‘aa’ versus ‘uu’, a mis-pronounciation that changes the meaning will stick out like a sore thumb!))


You need to set a tajweed goal from the beginning. It might be something like: “study tajweed to the point where I know I’m not sinning and changing the meaning when reciting the Quran.”

This would involve not mis-pronouncing letters, not stopping recitation in inappropriate places, among other requirements.

You can comfortably get to this level of tajweed with a competent teacher with just 30 hours of training. Find one in your local area, and go for it! You might do it each day for a month or two.


At that point, you can give yourself permission to just “maintain” your level of tajweed, while you do the 30 or so hours of Arabic study required to understand the vast majority (70-80%) of the Quran in Arabic. Learn exactly how in our joint FOSIS webinar, here:


Once you’ve done that, you can use the “Quran For Busy People” system to study small section of the Quran each day, from the beginning, picking out the few words (the infamous other 20-30%) of vocab, learning them, and reading that section with understanding.

(This system is also covered briefly in this webinar: )

And finally, at the end of the week, you could visit a tajweed teacher, and review the material you covered in the last week, checking your tajweed is correct.

Using this simple 3 step method, you won’t go over-the-top in one Quran goal, while completely neglecting another.

(And if your curious about “tafseer”, (understanding the Quran in depth) and memorisation, that comes a little later!)

If you found any benefit in this article, forward it on to your friends, family & other Quran fans!

If someone sent this to you, and you want the full scoop on getting great Quran tips, techniques and study methods, (as well as the quickest, easiest way
to understand the entire Quran in Arabic!), visit

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  • Hamida Doris Abdullah  On March 28, 2011 at 1:49 pm

    I like tajweed goal..

  • zubaida Khatieb  On May 21, 2011 at 7:19 pm

    very thought provoking

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