By: Mufti Musa Furber
It is recommended to complete the Quran during Ramadan. The following excerpt from Imam al-Nawawi’s Etiquette With the Quran touches on many of the legal issues and etiquette related to completing the Quran.
The Etiquette of Completing the Quran
There are several issues concerning completing the recitation of the Quran [khatma].
when to complete: The first etiquette concerns its timing. As previously mentioned, it is preferable for someone reciting the Quran on his own that [he complete it] during Prayer. Another opinion is that it is preferable for it to occur in the two rak‘a of the obligatory Morning Prayer, and in the two sunna rak‘as of the Sunset Prayer, and the two rak‘as of the Morning Prayer is better. In another opinion, it is preferable for the completion [khatma] in the beginning of the day for one turn [of recitation], and at the end of the day for next turn.
When someone completes the recitation outside of Prayer or a group completes while assembled together, it is recommended that it be at the beginning of the day or in the beginning of the night, as we previously mentioned. According to some scholars, though, the beginning of the day is better.
fasting the day of the khatma: It is recommended to fast the very day of the khatma unless it falls on a day in which it is forbidden to fast according to the Sharī‘a. Ibn Abī Dāwūd related with his rigorously authenticated chain of narrators that Ṭalḥa ibn Muṣarrif, Ḥabīb ibn Abī Thābit, and al-Musayib ibn Rāfi‘ī—all well known Kūfan Successors [God be well pleased with them]—would awaken fasting on the mornings in which they would complete the Quran.
attending the khatma: It is emphatically recommended to attend gatherings in which thekhatma takes place. It has been established in the rigorously authenticated hadiths of Bukhārī and Muslim that the Messenger of God (God bless him and give him peace) ordered women during their menses to go out on Eid to participate in the goodness and the supplications of the Muslims.1
Dārimī and Ibn Abī Dāwūd related with their chains of narration that Ibn ‘Abbās (God be pleased with them both) would make a person watch over someone finishing the Quran, and when he wanted to finish he would inform Ibn ‘Abbās so he could participate in it.2
Ibn Abī Dāwūd related with two rigorously authenticated chains of narration that Qatāda, the illustrious Successor and companion of Anas (God be pleased with him), said, “When Anas ibn Mālik (God be pleased with him) would complete [the Quran], he would gather his family and supplicate [to God].”
He [also] related with his rigorously authenticated chain of narration that al-Ḥakam ibn ‘Utaybah, the illustrious Successor, said, “Mujāhid and ‘Abdata Ibn Lubāba sent for me and said, ‘We sent for you because we want to finish the Quran, and supplication when finishing the Quran is answered.’” In some of the authenticate narrations he would say, “Indeed, mercy descends when completing the Quran.” [And] he related with his rigorously authenticated chain of narration from Mujāhid that he said, “They would gather when completing the Quran, saying that the Mercy now descends.”
the supplication: It is emphatically desirable to supplicate immediately after a khatma because of what we have just mentioned in the previous issue. Dārimī related with his chain of transmitters that Ḥumayd al-A‘raj said, “Whoever recites the Quran and then supplicates, four thousand angels say “Amīn!” to his supplication.”3
One should be persistent in his supplication and ask for important matters. He should [supplicate] much for the well-being of the Muslims, their leadership, and all others who attend to their affairs. Al-Ḥakim Abū ‘Abdallāh al-Nīsābūrī has related with his chain of narration that when ‘Abdallāh ibn al-Mubārak (God be pleased with him) would finish the Quran, he would make a great deal of his supplication for the Muslims and believers, male and female.” Others have said similar to this.
The one supplicating should choose all-encompassing supplications, such as the following: