No doubt that reciting the Qur’an and contemplating over its beautiful meanings entails a great reward. Indeed, there are many Prophetic hadiths which stress that the recitation of the Qur’an is a meritorious act. `Aishah, may Allah be pleased with her, quoted the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) as saying, “Verily the one who recites the Qur’an beautifully, smoothly, and precisely, he will be in the company of the noble and obedient angels. And as for the one who recites with difficulty, stammering or stumbling through its verses (because he doesn’t know how to read it but is trying to), then he will have twice that reward.”

Ibn Mas`ud (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Whoever recites a letter from the Book of Allah, he will be credited with a good deed, and a good deed gets a ten-fold reward. I do not say that Alif-Lam-Mim is one letter, but Alif is a letter, Lam is a letter and Mim is a letter.” (Reported by At-Tirmidhi).

In addition, `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`Aas (may Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “The one who was devoted to the the Qur’an will be told on the Day of Resurrection: `Recite and ascend (in ranks) as you used to recite when you were in the world. Your rank will be at the last Ayah you recite.” (Reported by Abu-Dawud and At-Tirmidhi).

Thus, reciting the Qur’an entails a great reward, and there is also a great merit in recitation.

Dr. Rif`at Fawzi, former professor of Shari`ah at Cairo Univ., states the following: “Indeed, there is a separate thawab or reward for recitation and another one for listening to the Qur’an. There is a reference to that in the Qur’an itself. Allah Almighty says,“And when the Quran is recited, give ear to it and pay heed, that ye may obtain mercy.” (Al-A`raf : 204). He Almighty also says, “…So recite of it (i.e. the Qur’an) that which is easy (for you).” (Al-Muzammil: 20)

Muslim scholars state that reciting the Qur’an while contemplating over its meanings entails a reward that exceeds listening. However, we may see that there is a person who is contemplating over the meanings of the Qur’an while he is listening attentively to the recitation and we may find somebody who is reciting the Qur’an while not taking heed to what he is reciting.

With the above in mind, I see that it is better for the person who doesn’t know the proper recitation to listen to the Qur’an until he knows the rules of recitation and then starts the recitation.

Thus, if you have the ability to recite the Qur’an and you find no difficulty in doing so, it is better for you to recite Surat Al-Baqarah in your home. If not, you can listen to it from the Computer but I advise you to appease and please your heart and tongue with the recitation of the Ever-Glorious Qur’an.”