Experiencing The Quran – Surah Ar-Rahman

Ustadha Umm Sahl guides even the very preliminary Arabic student to a genuine insight of the Quran as it is experienced in its original Arabic. Benefit from her personal commentary on the immediacy and import of the verses to our own lives. Part of Qibla’s Quran and Sunna Lectures series – lessons broadcasted straight from the Zawiya of Imam Abul Hasan Ash-Shadhili in Amman.

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  • Listen to an explanation of the tafsir and linguistic analysis of Surah Ar-Rahman
  • Benefit from Umm Sahl’s personal commentary bringing the verses to life for each of us personally
  • Listen to the Arabic recitation after covering the English meanings, to experience the Quran at a deeper level than you have before
  • Benefit from the distilled notes of Sheikh Ali Hani’s years of tafsir research
  • A sit-in lecture without any homework or assignments

About the Course

This course will look at each verse of the surah in both Arabic and its English translation. Umm Sahl’s commentary will primarily focus on two aspects:

The tafsir: Umm Sahl shall explain the purport of the verses, the larger context in which they were revealed, and bring the message home through the immediacy and personal import of the meanings to each and every single one of us today. In addition to material from traditional sources of tafsir, she brings the verses to life for the students through her own anecdotes and personal experiences from her decades of studying, practicing and serving the deen.

The Arabic: By pointing out meanings through the vocabulary, syntax, grammar, and balagha, Umm Sahl shall unpack linguistic meanings and ramifications that are not directly discernible from the outward purport of the wording.

The English explanation and commentary shall be followed by listening sessions, where the verses shall be played back for the students, so that having focused on the meanings and ramifications, they can then focus on the auditory semantics that constituted the miraculous experience of the Quran for those who heard it from our Prophet, Allah’s blessings and peace be upon him.

Course Syllabus

This term shall cover Surah Ar-Rahman, ‘The Merciful’ over 10 weeks. This will be the first time Umm Sahl is teaching a full course at Qibla!

Highlights from the themes that shall be covered in Surah Ar-Rahman: 

  • Allah’s Infinite Mercy and Generosity: Which of the favors of your Lord will ye deny?

Surah Ar-Rahman employs a potent interrogative theme, exhorting us to acknowledge the countless existential blessings we are surrounded by. It then takes us a step further, expanding our horizons beyond our worldly life to our ultimate destination: the passing away of all that we hold familiar and dear, our return to Allah, and our life to come. Hear Umm Sahl make these verses come alive by describing, in her own words, all that we have to be grateful for to Allah, Mighty and Majestic, and how we should strive to be thankful in every state and circumstance.

  • A Warning of things to come: Tidings of Judgment Day and the   outcome of the disbelievers

The rhetorical style of the surah is a calling to account: by acknowledging the blessings that have been bestowed upon us, we are lead to examine our own conduct – the enforcement of our personal responsibility. Have we used the blessing of existence for the purpose for which it was bestowed upon us? Have we rejected Allah’s Mercy of Revelation? Gratitude serves as a powerful wake-up call. Hear Umm Sahl describe the terrors of the Day of Judgment, the calling to account, and what it means for us personally.

  • Glad Tidings for the Believers: Description of Paradise

The most well known highlights of the surah describe the state of the Blessed in the Garden. Hear the tafsir commentary on the two Gardens of those Drawn Near and the two Gardens of the Companions of the Right.

  • What does this mean for you?

Umm Sahl’s commentary shall speak to you: your personal duty to make yourself worthy of nearness to Allah. This is the underlying theme of the surah. Allah Most High is holding up in front of us instance after instance of His unreckonable Mercy; the ranks of those who believe, are grateful, and attain eternal felicity; and contrasting it to the woeful outcome of the sinners, that we may ourselves rise to the occasion, prove grateful, and attain proximity by not denying any of His favors.

What does this mean for you personally? What can you do to be of those drawn nigh? Join Umm Sahl as she guides you through the tafsir of Surah Ar-Rahman. 

Course Format

This course is part of our Quran and Sunna Lectures series. Classes will be taught weekly and broadcast live from the Zawiya of Imam Abul Hasan ash-Shadhili in Amman, Jordan.

Quran and Sunna Lectures are lessons to sit in on and benefit from entirely at your own pace – no assessments, exams, grades or homework assignments. You can ask the instructor questions during the Live Sessions, and they are answered during the last ten minutes of each lesson.

Weekly Time Commitment

Not having any homework or assessments, the course does not require any weekly time-commitment.

Suggested readings

There is no required text for this course. All the material shall be presented in class.

Recommended Background

No background is required: all are welcome!


Why is Experiencing the Quran an experience not to be missed?

Umm Sahl really brings the verses to life for her students through her own connection with, love and reverence for the Book of Allah. Her personal commentary based on her years of study and service in the path of Allah, and living around and learning from the scholars and the awliya, the people of Allah, of Turkey, Syria, and Jordan serves as a real bridge in connecting her students’ hearts to the Quran.

After the explanation in English, the student will listen to the recitation of the verse in Arabic. The recitation will be repeated two or three times, so what was expounded on in English can be understood and experienced in Arabic. The Quran was revealed in Arabic, and its pure divine provenance and miraculousness is only found in its original form.

The goal of this didactic process – intellectual cognition followed by auditory repetition, is an attempt to recreate an experience: inshaAllah, the student will be able to close their eyes and envisage how the Prophet, upon him be peace, introduced the revelation of the Quran to the Companions, and the impact it must have had on their hearts when they heard the verses being revealed for the first time.

A little background on what you’re getting in this course…

The material for Umm Sahl’s tafsir commentary is based on her studies with her teacher Shaykh Ali Hani – a remarkable Jordanian scholar who is a master of the Arabic language and a veritable ‘Einstein of tafsir’. Although a prolific scholar in many disciplines, Sheikh Ali is passionately consumed by his love for the Quran and has dedicated himself completely to the Book of Allah. He is known for his encyclopedic knowledge of all sources of tafsir, and often spends weeks researching a single word of the Quran, using nearly a hundred different books from grammar, rhetoric, morphology, fiqh, hadith and other sources to get a complete tafsir picture of a single verse. With his proverbial dedication to learning and teaching, Sheikh Ali is a teacher of teachers who is rarely seen without a book in his hand.

Through her extensive notes from Sheikh Ali, and the translation of her hours of study with him, Umm Sahl has made the fruits of Sheikh Ali’s effort available to her students in English. This course really represents the distilled efforts of a level of scholarship that is seldom met-with – and inshaAllah this shall not be lost on the student.

About the Instructor

Umm Sahl


Course Code



Level: Quran & Sunna Lectures

Starting From

1 February, 2015


10 weeks

Tuition Fee

225 USD   Instant Financial Aid