Yusuf Aslam, a 7-year-old boy from Luton, England has finished memorising the Qur’an aged 7. He follows in the footsteps of his older sister Maariya who also memorised the Qur’an two years ago at the same age. It took him just over two years to memorise all 114 chapters of the book of Allah.
IlmFeed got in touch with his mother who shared a few insights into Yusuf’s journey. How did it feel when he completed memorising the Qur’an? (It felt) like being in a dream. I never ever dreamt I could achieve this. Allah (swt) has truly blessed us to be able to go through this journey. Allah says I will make it easy for you if you try, and He did. It’s a feeling of contentment knowing you’ve done the best you can for your akhirah – InShaAllah. Did Maariya Help? Maariya has stepped in at times when I’m busy. Maariya’s hifz ability is exceptional and she has been a constant source of support whenever required. They like to test one another which is always fun to watch. Maariya had many other commitments during Yusuf’s hifz which have only recently diminished, so she hasn’t been heavily involved; but has still assisted along the way. The plan is for them is be ‘revision buddies’. I’m sure I’ll be heavily supervising before they finally grasp the level it needs to get to. Yusuf is very lucky to have Hafiza Maariya as a sister. Did you face any difficulties? The whole journey wasn’t without it’s challenges. Hifz, in my opinion, is a lifestyle changer. For about 2 years you hardly have a social life. I literally live, breathe, discuss hifz with most people I end up meeting because, quite simply, it’s been my focus for so long now. Alhamdulillah, Yusuf transitioned easily into the hifz routine as he had seen his sister follow that path and he always loved listening to Qur’an at bedtime. I knew he was keen to learn it, even though he didn’t know how much commitment it really requires. I’ve given up my career to educate my children; both in the Islamic upbringing and educationally. As a parent I’m blessed to have children who cooperate and have a good work ethic/ free time balance. I found it easier second time around. How did you motivate your son to become a hafiz? Alhamdulillah, there hasn’t been a day where he has said that he just doesn’t want to do it. He wanted to become a Hafiz. After just knowing a small section of the Qur’an, he wanted to know why he wasn’t called hafiz like his sister. I explained he had to know all of it first. Also, he was gifted regular rewards. He has been promised a large party and he knows he can ask for anything and he will be gifted it at some point. His main prize will be a trip to Umrah InShaAllah, in the coming December holidays – hopefully it’s not too late to book! Do you have any advice for other parents? Lots of parents are worried how their children will cope. Children adapt very easily, so after a month at the most, your child will be used to a hifz routine. All parents should learn or know tajweed enough to help their children. This is an absolute must if you want to be involved. There’s a great sense of satisfaction listening to your child recite the words of Allah swt, but the whole learning for your child will take a more positive stance and even though it’s not a race, you will see results a lot quicker, than if you weren’t involved. Qur’an teachers at a mosque/maktab can only give your child about 5 mins in a class, so they can’t move your child forward until they are satisfied with each line and page – practise with them daily at home before they go back the next day. Also, I have comfort knowing that if Yusuf can memorise the Qur’an, he will InShaAllah sail through most exams as has been the case with his sister. Parents often worry about the academic effect hifz has. My children were both between the ages of 5 to 7 when they were taught hifz. I took the view that school work wasn’t going to suffer immensely whilst we went on this journey. I’m 100% of the opinion that hifz only improves the child’s ability to learn and recollect facts. Maariya has proven herself academically by being in the ‘highly superior’ IQ group and has gone on to pass grammar school exams. She has gained the highest band possible at England’s number one grammar school. Allah (swt) blesses these children and in return they must maintain and live by the Qur’an. I don’t doubt that Yusuf will excel academically also and he will go on to do public speeches and InShaAllah also be a world-renowned scholar, but with a profession also. Finally, make the intention and some changes. I’ll say this again, if I can do this, then anyone can. Yusuf’s mother has helped hundreds of parents who message her for advice on her Facebook page. Follow the page here.