Listening to Qur’an While Solving Math Problems

Ustadh Farid Dingle is asked about listening to the Qur’an while doing something else.

I pray this note finds you in the best of spirits insha Allah

Alhamdulillah, I love Islam and try my best to practice it in the best way possible.

In my eagerness to do more at the same time, I sometimes listen to Qur’an while solving math problems. Is that permissible or it is against the adab of Qur’an?

Please advise.

Jazak Allah khayr

It is permissible, but the proper way to listen to the Qur’an is to give it your full attention and ponder on its meanings.

Allah Most High says, “So when the Qur’an is recited, then listen to it and pay attention that you may receive mercy.” (Sura al-A‘raf 7: 204)

One of the scholars that I that asked about this was actually a mathematician and felt it farfetched that someone could ‘pay attention’ while working on something that is very mentally taxing.

Another quoted the verse of the Quran, “Never has God endowed any man with two hearts in one body.” (Sura al-Ahzab 33:4) That is to sat that one cannot focus on two things at the same time.

So, it is not the best way to listen to the Qur’an, but it is not forbidden and certainly better than listening to something inappropriate.

I pray this helps.


Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

Qur’an Application on a Smartphone: Can I Touch My Smartphone Without Ablution?

Answered by Ustadh Salman Younas
Question: Is it necessary for a person to have wudu if they want to use a Quran app on a smartphone? Does the same rule that applies to touching a mushaf apply to touching the phone while the Quran is open on the device?
Answer: assalamu `alaykum
The answer to your question has been detailed by Mufti Muhammad ibn Adam here: Qur’an Application on an iPhone: Can I Touch My iPhone Without Ablution?
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

Advising Those Who Don’t Handle the Qur’an With Proper Etiquette

Answered by Shaykh Rami Nsour

Question: I personally follow typical etiquette with the Qur’an with regards to reading, placement, etc (i.e. not leaving it on the floor, not having other objects or books of another kind above a placed Qur’an). My brother however tends to leave stuff on my Qur’an and says a little vaguely that some scholars say that the real Qur’an is with Allah, and that a mushaf is simply a mushaf, and no real etiquette of the sort I’m following is necessary.

I am personally unsure of what action should take precedence; my feeling of leaving nothing on it or his regard and actions of leaving things on it. Secondly, I’m not sure who or how many scholars are of the opinion he has taken. Thirdly, I’m not sure if I can basically say that the majority of scholars say we should treat the Qur’an with proper respect. Fourthly, if the statement aforementioned is in the positive (that is, the majority of scholars do have opinion that regards etiquette with the Qur’an), should I regard the opinion my brother follows as legitimate and possible to follow or not? Jazakallah Khair.


The Word of Allah

The statement presented by your brother, “the real Qur’an is with Allah” is not a proof to leave etiquette with the Quran. Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) said, “What is between the covers of the mushaf is the Word of Allah.” We do not believe that the mushaf is God-incarnate in the form of a book, but we do affirm that it is the Word of God.

Exalting the Sacred Books

If one was to say that the Mushaf is like anything else, this would be exactly as Qurasyh said when they said, “It is only the speech of a man” (Quran 74:25). The Books of Allah are different than other things in this world and thus we must treat them with respect. We find in a Hadith narrate in the Sunan of Abud Dawud that the Messenger of Allah took a cushion he was sitting on to place upon it the Torah when it was brought to him.

Exalting the Symbols of Allah

Allah says, “ًWhoever exalts the symbols of Allah, then that is from piety of the hearts” (Quran 22:32). The entire Hajj season is to exalt and commemorate the actions of Ibrahim and Ismael (upon them be peace). Would someone say, “The current Ka’aba is not the exact same bricks that was used by Ibrahim so we do not have a duty to honor it.”


I would ask your brother if he would be insulted if a person brought a picture of your parents and trampled it with their feet, spat on it and threw it in the garbage. What would his response be if the person said, “I did not do anything to your parents, it was just a picture of them.” I advise us all to read the books on the etiquette with the Quran such as the work Tibyan by Imam Nawawi to learn the proper method of dealing with the mushaf.

Rami Nsour

Carrying a Small Copy of the Qur’an

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Is carrying or keeping a small quran on your person permissible?


Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

I pray that you are well, insha’Allah.

The basis of dealing with the book of Allah is with reverence. Allah Most High says, “And whosoever venerates God’s waymarks, that is of the godliness of the hearts.” [Qur’an, 22:32]

Thus it is permitted to carry the Qur’an on your person, albeit in a respectful, dignified manner. As such, it would be proper to keep it raised in your shirt pocket, for example.

Moreover, if the mushaf is without a detachable cover, it would not permitted to touch it without ablution (wudu). Allah Most High says, “None but the purified shall touch” [Qur’an, 56:79]

[Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah; `Ala’ al-Din `Abidin, al-Hadiyya al-`Ala’iyya]

And Allah alone gives success.


Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Related Answers:

Treating the Qur’an and the Name of Allah With Respect

Qur’an Application on an iPhone: Can I Touch My iPhone Without Ablution?

Placing the Qur’an on the Floor: Not Permissible

Etiquette of Reading and Handling the Qur’an

Sending a Qur’an in the Mail

Ramadan Reminders (7): Observing the Inward Manners of the Qur’an by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ramadan Reminder (8): Living the Qur’an by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Reciting Qur’an Without Ritual Purity (Wudu)

The Adab of Electronic Devices – Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf – Muwasala

Qur’an Application on an iPhone: Can I Touch My iPhone Without Ablution?

Answered by Mufti Muhammad ibn Adam

Question: I recently downloaded the Quran application onto my iPhone and have the entire Qur’an saved both in audio and digital forms. I have two questions: Firstly, do I need to have Wudu in order to touch my iPhone, or is wudu required only when the app is open? Secondly, would it be impermissible to take the phone to the lavatory given that the entire Qur’an is stored in digital form on its memory?

Answer: In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful,

1) The position of all four Sunni schools of Islamic law is that it is unlawful (haram) to touch any part of a textual copy of the Qur’an (mushaf) without being in a state of minor ritual purity (wudu), as a way of honouring the book of Allah. The majority of the Imams of Qur’anic exegesis (mufassirun) state that the verses: “It is surely the Noble Qur’an, (recorded already) in a protected book (i.e. the Preserved Tablet) that is not touched except by the purified ones (the angels). A revelation from the Lord of the worlds” (Qur’an: 56/77-80) refers also to physically touching the Qur’an. Moreover, Imam Malik (Allah have mercy on him) relates in his Al-Muwatta that the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) wrote a letter to Amr ibn Hazm (Allah be pleased with him), in which he said, “None should touch the Qur’an except one who is in a state of purity.” (Al-Muwatta no: 534)

Apart from the Mushaf, if a complete verse of the Qur’an is written or inscribed on something else such as a wall, piece of paper, slate or coin [m: and by extension, if the Qur’an is stored electronically in a digital format on an iPhone, PC or some other device, since it can not be classed a Mushaf], there are two opinions of classical Hanafi jurists (fuqaha) regarding its ruling:

Some jurists are of the view that in addition to the Mushaf itself, it is not permitted to touch an item on which a complete verse of the Qur’an is inscribed. It is stated in Maraqi al-Falah:

“Likewise Wudu is mandatory in order to touch a Mushaf, and even [to touch] a verse inscribed on a coin or wall due to the statement of Allah Most High, “it is not touched except by the purified ones” whether [to touch] the inscribed part or the blank space. Some of our [Hanafi] scholars, however, stated that what is prohibitively disliked for the ritually impure is to touch the actual area where the text is written and not the blank space because one is not touching the Qur’an literally. The correct position is that touching the blank space is akin to touching the text itself [in that both are not permitted].” (See: (Maraqi al-Falah with the commentary of Tahtawi P: 82)

Acknowledging that some Hanafi jurists limit the prohibition of touching to the actual area where the Qur’anic text is inscribed, Imam Shurunbulali in the above passage explains that the correct position is that if a verse is written on anything besides the Mushaf, on a slate for example, then not only is it prohibited to touch that part of the slate where the verse is inscribed but the whole slate itself. Based on this, if the Qur’an application is activated and the verses appear on the screen of an iPhone, PC or other electronic devices, it is not permitted to touch the device without Wudu.

The second opinion within the Hanafi School is that if Qur’anic verses are inscribed on something other than a Mushaf, then it is only impermissible to touch that part of the item where the verses are inscribed and not the whole item. Imam Ibn Abidin (Allah have mercy on him), quoting Halabi and Al-Bahr al-Ra’iq, states:

“… It is not unlawful in other than a Mushaf [to touch] except the area where the verses are inscribed.” (Radd al-Muhtar ala ‘l-Durr al-Mukhtar 1/173)

This position, chosen by Imams Ibn Abidin, Ibn Nujaym and others, can be acted upon given the need and widespread usage of digital forms of the Qur’an. It is, however, superior and closer to propriety when possible to take precaution and act upon the first position. Based on this, once the verses of the Qur’an appear on the screen, it will not be permitted to touch the area where the actual text appears without Wudu. Touching other parts of the iPhone or device, however, will be permitted.

Note that if the Qur’an application is not activated and hence the verses do not appear on the screen, then it is totally permitted to touch the device including the screen without Wudu.

2) As for taking to the lavatory/toilet a phone which has Qur’anic verses, Hadiths, Prophetic supplications, etc stored on its memory, if the application is not running and the text is not visible on the screen, then it is permitted. However, taking the phone into the lavatory with the text visible on the screen is highly disrespectful and blameworthy. It is stated in Al-Fatawa al-Hindiyya:

“It is [prohibitively] disliked to enter a lavatory with a finger ring on which the name of Allah Most High or some part of the Qur’an is inscribed.” (Al-Fatawa al-Hindiyya 1/50)

And Allah Knows Best
Muhammad ibn Adam
Darul Iftaa
Leicester , UK

Placing the Qur’an on the Floor: Not Permissible

Answered by Sidi Salman Younas

Question: Regarding the Quran, are there any explicit sayings from the Quran itself, hadith, or scholars regarding placing it on the floor or low places?

Answer: assalamu `alaykum

I pray you are well.

There are many general proofs for the impermissibility of placing the Qur’an on the floor, or treating it in any way indicative of debasement or lack of respect.

Allah Most High stated, “Whoever exalts the signs of Allah, that is indeed from the piety of hearts.” [22.32] There is no doubt that the Qur’an is from among the greatest “signs” of Allah, rather His Speech to creation that serves as a guidance for all.

Tamim al-Dari narrates that the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said, “The religion is sincere counsel. We said, ‘To whom, Oh Messenger of Allah?’ He said, ‘To Allah, His book, His Messengers, the Muslim leaders, and the laity.'” [Muslim, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi] The scholars mention that sincere counsel as it relates to the Qur’an includes having immense respect for it, to believe it is the Word of Allah, to recite ir properly, to reflect on it and its lessons, to implement its guidance, and so forth. [Nawawi, Sharh Sahih Muslim]

Imam Nawawi states that there is consensus between the scholars on the obligation of respecting the Qur’an. [Ibn Muflih, Adab al-Shari`ah] Imam Qurtubi states explicitly that one should not place the Qur’an on the ground, nor should one place other books on top of it. For more, please see Etiquette of Reading and Handling the Qur’an.


Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Etiquette of Reading and Handling the Qur’an

Answered by Imam Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Qurtubi

Question: What is the etiquette of reading and handling the Qur’an?

Answer: Imam Muhammad ibn Ahmad Qurtubi says in al-Jami’ li ahkam al-Qur’an [Taken from Reliance of the Traveler]

It is the inviolability of the Qur’an:

1. not to touch the Qur’an except in the state of ritual purity in wudu, and to recite it when in a state of ritual purity;

2. to brush one’s teeth with a toothstick (siwak), remove food particles from between the them, and to freshen one’s mouth before reciting, since it is the way through which the Qur’an passes;

3. to sit up straight if not in prayer, and not lean back;

4. to dress for reciting as if intending to visit a prince, for the reciter is engaged in an intimate discourse;

5. to face the direction of prayer (qiblah) to recite;

6. to rinse the mouth out with water if one coughs up mucus or phlegm;

7. to stop reciting when one yawns, for when reciting , one is addressing one’s Lord in intimate conversation, while yawning is from the Devil;

8. when begining to recite, to take refuge from in Allah from the accursed Devil and say the Basmala, whether one has begun at the first surah or some other part one has reached;

9. once one has begun, not to interrupt one’s recital from moment to moment with human words, unless absolutely necessary;

10. to be alone when reciting it, so that no one interrupts one, forcing one to mix the words of the Qur’an with replying, for this nullifies the effectivness of having taken refuge in Allah from the Devil at the beginning;

11. to recite it leisurely and without haste, distinctly pronouncing each letter;

12. to use one’s mind and understanding in order to comprehend what is being said to one;

13. to pause at verses that promise Allah’s favour, to long for Allah Most High and ask of His bounty; and at verses that warn of His punishment to ask Him to save one from it;

14. to pause at the accounts of bygone peoples and individuals to heed and benefit from their example;

15. to find out the meanings of the Qur’an’s unusual lexical usages;

16. to give each letter its due so as to clearly and fully pronounce every word, for each letter counts as ten good deeds;

17. whenever one finishes reciting, to attest to the veracity of ones’s Lord, and that His messenger (Allah bless him and grant him peace) has delivered his message, and to testify to this, saying: “Our Lord, You have spoken the truth, Your messengers have delivered their tidings, and bear witness to this. O Allah, make us of those who bear witness to the truth and who act with justice”: after which one supplicates Allah with prayers.

18. not to select certain verses from each surah to recite, but rather the recite the whole surah;

19. if one puts down the Qur’an, not to leave it open;

20. not to place other books upon the Qur’an, which should always be higher than all other books, whether they are books of Sacred Knowledge or something else;

21. to place the Qur’an on one’s lap when reading; or on something in front of one, not on the floor;

22. not to wipe it from a slate with spittle, but rather wash it off with water; and if one washes it off with water, to avoid putting the water where there are unclean substances (najasa) or where people walk. Such water has its own inviolability, and there were those of the early Muslims before us who used water that washed away Qur’an to effect cures.

23. not to use sheets upon which it has been written as bookcovers, which is extremely rude, but rather to erase the Qur’an from them with water;

24. not to let a day go by without looking at least once at the pages of the Qur’an;

25. to give one’s eyes their share of looking at it, for the eyes lead to the soul (nafs), whereas there is a veil between the breast and the soul, and the Qur’an is in the breast.

26. not to trivially quote the Qur’an at the occurrence of everyday events, as by saying, for example, when someone comes, “You have come hither according to a decree, O Moses” [Qur’an 69:24],

or,  “Eat and drink heartily for what you have done aforetimes, in days gone by” [Qur’an 69:24], when food is brought out, and so forth;

27. not to recite it to songs tunes like those of the corrupt, or with the tremulous tones of Christians or the plaintiveness of monkery, all of which is misguidance;

28. when writing the Qur’an to do so in a clear, elegant hand;

29. not to recite it out aloud over another’s reciting of it, so as to spoil it for him or make him resent what he hears, making it as if it were some kind of competition;

30. not to recite it in marketplaces, places of clamour and frivolity, or where fools gather;

31. not to use the Qur’an as pillow, or lean upon it;

32. not to toss it when one wants to hand it to another;

33. not to miniaturize the Qur’an, mix into it what is not of it, or mingle this worldly adornment with it by embellishing or writing it with gold;

34. not to write it on the ground or on walls, as is done in some new mosques;

35. not to write an amulet with it and enter the lavatory, unless it is encased in leather, silver, or other, for then it is as if kept in the heart;

36. if one writes it and then drinks it (for cure or other purpose), one should say the Basmala at every breath and make a noble and worthy intention, for Allah only gives to one according to one’s intention;

37. and if one finishes reciting the entire Qur’an, to begin it anew, that it may not resemble something that has been abandoned.

(Taken from an excellent resource for traditional Islam)

Qur’an Software Application & Entering the Toilet

Answered by Sidi Salman Younas

Question: Would you be able to tell me about the permissibility of having iphone applications like the Quran or Tafsir on one’s phone. What if I have to visit the lavatory and I have no place to leave my phone during these times except in my trouser or jacket pocket?

Answer: assalamu `alaykum

This would be permitted. However, caution should be exercised in order maintain the inviolate nature of the Qur’an. One should not, for example, touch the actual verses on the screen without being in a state of ritual purity.

As for visiting the toilet, defined as the place where one relieves oneself, then you should turn off the application before entering the lavatory and place the phone into your pocket. The dislikedness of taking the Qur’an into the lavatory, or any other name religiously inviolable such as “Allah”, is when the object is unconcealed. [Tahtawi, Hashiya `ala Maraqi al-Falah]


Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

ثم محل الكراهة إن لم يكن مستورا فإن كان في جيبه فإنه حينئذ لا بأس به وفي القهستاني عن المنية الأفضل أن لا يدخل الخلاء وفي كمه مصحف إلا إذا اضطر ونرجو أن لا لا يأثم بلا اضطرار اهـ وأقره الحموي وفي الحلبي الخاتم المكتوب فيه شيء من ذلك إذا جعل فصه إلى باطن كفه قيل لا يكره والتحرز أولى