in category Seerah

Why did A'isha say the prophet was like the walking Qur'an?

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What did she mean by this?
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A'isha (ra) said the Prophet was like the walking Qur'an reflecting the deep reverence and admiration she and even the sahaba had for the Prophet (saw).

One reason for her statement was the Prophet (saw) was known to personally be a living embodiment of the Qur'an's ahkaam. The Prophet's actions and behavior were in line with the principles and values of the Qur'an, a model for all Muslims. Allah stated:

"It is, in truth, the speech of an honored messenger. It is not the word of a poet—little do you believe! Nor is it the word of a soothsayer - little do you remember!" (Qur'an 75:16-17)

The Prophet (saw) himself said:

"I have been sent to perfect good manners" (Sahih Bukhari, Hadith no. 5922)

Another reason for her statement is the Prophet (saw) had a deep understanding of the Qur'an and was able to explain it in a way easily understood by all. The Prophet said:

"The best among you is the one who learns the Qur'an and teaches it" (Bukhari 5027)

As the Prophet was considered the best among the community, it is no surprise that his teachings and explanations of the Qur'an were considered highly valuable.

Additionally, the Prophet's ability to recite the Qur'an with great eloquence and emotion also contributed to A'isha's statement. The Prophet said:

"The Qur'an and those who committed themselves to it will be presented on the Day of Resurrection, preceded by Surat Al-Baqarah and Surat Al 'Imran, like two clouds or two shades, or two flocks of birds in ranks, pleading for those who committed themselves to them." (Muslim 804)

Ibn Khaldun, a classical Muslim Scholar, stated:

"The Prophet was the living Qur'an, and his actions were the practical commentary on its teachings."

Whilst Imam Ghazali stated:

"The Prophet was the ocean of knowledge, and his understanding of the Qur'an was like a pearl diver diving deep into that ocean to bring out its hidden treasures."


A'isha's statement the Prophet was like the walking Qur'an reflects the deep reverence and admiration that the early Muslim community had for the Prophet (saw), a living embodiment and deep understanding of the Qur'an, who was able to explain it in a way that was easily understood by all.


Ibn Khaldun, Muqaddimah: An Introduction to History, Translated by Franz Rosenthal

Ghazali, Ihya Ulum al-Din, Vol.1

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