Crown Prince extols virtues of the Quran
By Azaraimy HH

Living a life befriending the Quran can be a therapeutic experience, which can cure a wounded heart or soul, and calm a troubled mind, said His Royal Highness Prince Hj Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister's Office last night during the final of the National Al-Quran Reading Competition for Adults at the International Convention Centre.

Also present was HRH Prince 'Abdul Malik.

In a sabda, HRH the Crown Prince extolled the virtues of the Quran and reminded of the many gains the Islamic holy book can provide for humanity.

The sanctity of the holy Quran, without a shadow of a doubt, provides many benefits to those who read it and listen to it, and those who study it, but above all, those who follow its teachings.

"Verily, Allah the Almighty promises good fortune and blessings to those who stay devoted to the Quran throughout their life and thereafter," HRH the Crown Prince said.

"Thus, we, as followers of Islam, must always work to find and hold on to the secrets of its (Quran) blessing," HRH the Crown Prince added.

According to the Crown Prince, benefits and blessings from the Quran will always be there for the humanity, it's only left to us to use it and embrace its teachings.

"More than just a cure to our hearts," HRH the Crown Prince said, "Al-Quran is a treasure trove of sources of education, a mind opener to all humanity through all spheres of education, reminders and essence of education that contain therein, and as guidance to life as well as an indicator towards the divine power of Allah the Almighty - the creator of all."

The Crown Prince said the reading of the Holy Quran should be part of the culture of our youths in order to gain many of its benefits.

The Crown Prince said he was happy to know that many youths are able to read the Holy Quran fluently, even though some do not know the meanings of some words. HRH said it is a praiseworthy endeavour to inculcate the value of reading the Quran among the younger generation.

The Crown Prince hoped that with these efforts, the aspiration of the country to become a Zikir nation (a country which practises Zikir in all aspects) will come to realisation as this is in line with the concept of Malay Islamic Monarchy philosophy.

Meanwhile, Pengiran Dato Seri Setia Dr Hj Mohammad bin Pengiran Hj Abdul Rahman, Minister of Religious Affairs, in his speech said, the final this year, which will be held for two days, Wednesday and Thursday, is being competed by four Qari (Male) and four Qariah (Female) participants.

The participants comprise three Qari and three Qariah, and one defending champion from respective Qari and Qariah category.

The three Qari and Qariah were selected in the semi-finals held April 14 whereas the other two qualified by virtue of being champions of last year's competition.

The minister said the competition began at mosque level, where winners competed in their respective zones and districts, but only participants who achieved 75 per cent marks and above in their respective zone and district level qualified to compete in the quarter-finals.

Pengiran Dato Seri Setia Dr Hj Mohammad said the total number of participants who competed in the quarter-finals were 85, comprising 59 Qari and 26 Qariah. It was held for four days from March 12 to 15 at Masjid Setia Ali, Pekan Muara.

According to the minister, the overall reading quality of participants has improved compared to the previous competition.

Nonetheless, the minister said, additional efforts were made by the Ministry of Religious Affairs to further enhance the quality of reading among the participants in the final round, which was by providing intensive courses to them.

He said, a further intensive course will be provided to winners, who will represent the country in the international arena. - Borneo Bulletin (12th May 2011)