One Friday, when I was around seventeen years old, I had gone to the Carrahpasha Mosque opposite our house in Carrahpasha, Istanbul. I was newly taking up interest in such topics… Somebody tapped my shoulder and said “The master is calling you.” This was a man whom I heard was 104 years old and was generally referred to as the Friday Sheikh… I later found out he was a sheikh of the Naqshibandi order. I don’t know how he saw me from such a distance that day, given he had very poor sight. Anyway, I went next to him and kissed his hands. He asked me, “If I were to give you a task, will you do it?” Full of the vigor and enthusiasm of my age, I aptly responded, “Yes, of course!” But I had no idea about anything at that time. Then he said, “Recite the chapter al-Ikhlas 100 thousand times, however long it may take you, and then come back to me.”
Unfortunately, he passed away a week after this incident. But I kept my word and finished the recital of 100 thousand al-Ikhlas in twenty days. I pray and hope that Allah will forgive me and enable me to reach the secrets of this chapter for the sake of these recitals.
This is why I recommend all my believing brethren to recite this chapter as much as they can. May Allah ease it!
The Rasul of Allah (saw) told his companions:
“Gather you all, I’m going to recite to you one-third of the Quran.” So all the companions gathered. Then the Rasul of Allah (saw) came to his house, recited the chapter al-Ikhlas and then went back inside. The companions all looked at each other and said, “He must have received a revelation to have gone back inside;” they thought was receiving a new revelation… Then the Rasul of Allah (saw) came out again and said, “I told you I was going to recite one-third of the Quran to you and I did… The chapter al-Ikhlas is equivalent to one-third of the Quran!”
Abu Hurairah (ra) narrates:
“We came somewhere with the Rasul of Allah (saw) and saw a man reciting Kul huwallahu ahad allahus samad lam yalid wa lam yulad walam yakun lahu kufuwan ahad… The Rasul of Allah (saw) said, ‘It has become a requisite.’ So, I asked, ‘What has become requisite, O Rasul of Allah?’ And he said, ‘Paradise!’ I wanted to run and give the good news to the man, but I feared losing the honorable chance of eating with the Rasul of Allah… I went later, but unfortunately the man had gone.”
Abu Darda (ra) narrates:
“The Rasul of Allah (saw) said, ‘Can any of you be lacking ability to read one-third of the Quran at night?’ Upon which his companions asked, ‘How can we read one-third of the Quran?’ and the Rasul of Allah (saw) said, ‘Allah has divided the Quran into three sections. Kulhuwallahu ahad is one of these!’”
In another hadith, the Rasul of Allah (saw) says in regards to the chapter al-Ikhlas:
“Whoever recites one thousand Ikhlas and blows it to his spirit, Allah will emancipate him from Hell.”
Thus, if we make it a habit to recite a thousand Ihklas on special nights or for our kin who have passed away, both them and us will benefit immensely.