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In South Asia, Juz is also called "Para". The Qur'an was equally divided into thirty parts, perhaps based on the number of pages disregarding content or Surah. This was done for the convenience of reciting the whole Qur'an in thirty days or one month. Each Juz is also divided into four quarters or four "ruba". The Qur'an copies printed anywhere in the world have Juz and quarter markings as ruba' (first quarter), nusf (one-half) and al-thulatha (three-quarter). This gives 120 quarter-parts of the Qur'an giving the flexibility of reciting the whole Qur'an in equal parts in 30, 60 or 120 days. This type of partitioning of the Qur'an is used very much in South Asia whereas the Arab world does not make much use of it. Even referring to Qur'anic verses South Asians would talk in terms of "Para" number as they carry numbers from 1 to 30 for each Juz. This kind of referring to the Qur'an verses is very unscientific because it does not provide precise location of the verse. If someone says that a verse is in 15th Para, it is not precise enough to find it easily.
According to this system each Juz is further divided into two Hizbs and each Hizb is further divided into four quarters. It means that a Juz has two Hizbs and eight Hizb-quarters or each Juz-quarter has two Hizb-quarters. The whole Qur'an is divided into 240 Hizb-quarters. This allows a person to recite the Qur'an in small groups of verses and complete the recitation in one-month to eight-month period. In addition, Hizb partitioning of the Qur'an allows a Muqri (Qur'an reciter) to recite one Hizb in each Raka'ah of Salat at-Traweeh and finish one Juz every night in eight Raka'hs thereby completing the whole Qur'an in 30 nights of Ramadan. Partitioning of the Qur'an in Hizb is not found in the copies printed in South Asia.
Some Muslims prefer to do 20 raka'ah every night for Salat At-Taraweeh during the month of Ramadan, that is, recite a section and go to ruku' (bowing). They had to find markers to recite a portion of the Qur'an in each Raka'ah while completing a topic. In South Asia the tradition is to complete recitation of the whole Qur'an in 27 nights. This required partitioning of the Qur'an in 27 x 20 = 540 sections excepting the Surah al-Fatiha. When such partitioning was done they ended up with 556 (+1 for Surat al-Fatiha) sections. Evidently, they did not go back to redo the partitioning to come with 540 sections. The Qur'an copies printed in South Asia have Ruku' or Section markings showing number of the ruku' within the Surah, within the Juz and ayah number within the ruku'. Traditionally, South Asian Muslims may give reference of a ayahs from the Qur'an by referring to the ruku' number and Juz number but such system is unscientific and it is not universally acceptable. Qur'an copies printed in the Arab world do not include ruku' markings.
Some Qur'an scholars talk in terms of groups of Surah or complementary couples of Surahs. These complementary groups or couples are based on the themes and like contents. For example, there is a group of Musabbihat, five Surahs that begin with glorification of Allah (Sabbah lillahi or Yusabbihu lillahi). There are many other groups of Surahs that have been suggested. Also, there are twins or complementary couples, such as Surahs 2 and 3 make a couple, Surahs 91 and 92 is another couple. According to such scholars most of the Qur'an consists of complementary couples.
Research by Muhammad Amir Ali
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