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Archive for September, 2008

Contemplate, then, the mercy of Allah ‘azza wa jall, that one night of worship may erase a lifetime of sins:

 

 

It is reported on the authority of Abu Hurayrah, that Allah’s Messenger (sallAllahu alayhi wa sallam) said:

 

‘Whoever stood in prayer on the night of Al-Qadr, in faith and hoping for a reward from Allah, he will have all of his previous sins forgiven.’

 

(Narrated by Al-Bukhari and Muslim).

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‘Aa’ishah (radyAllahau ‘anhaa) said: “When the last ten days (of Ramadaan) would come, the Prophet (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) would spend his night in worship, wake his family (at night), exert himself and tighten his Izaar (waistcloth).” [1]

This hadeeth is proof that the last ten days of Ramadaan have a special virtue over any other (set of days), in which one should increase in obedience and acts of worship, such as prayer, making dhikr (remembrance) and reciting the Qur’aan.

‘Aa’ishah (radyAllahau ‘anhaa) has described our Prophet and role model, Muhammad (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), with four attributes:

1. He (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) would “spend his night in worship”, meaning he would not sleep during it. Thus, he (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) would remain awake throughout it in worship and he would liven his soul by spending the night in sleeplessness. This is since sleep is the brother of death. The meaning of “spend his night” is that he (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) would spend all of it in the state of qiyaam (night prayer) and performing acts of worship that are done for the sake of Allaah, Lord of the worlds. We must remember that the last ten days of Ramadaan are fixed and numbered.

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Ramadhaan is the month of mercy, the month of forgiveness, wherein we increase our ‘ibadaah and hope to gain a closer connection with Ar-Rahmaan. But for many, the sweetness of this month lies solely in the special, savory dishes they are served during iftaar. Ramadhaan then becomes a month wherein they may gather with family and eat special foods they do not eat for the rest of the year. And if Ramadhaan looms significant only for this aspect, how then are we to extract the many benefits of this blessed month?

If one spends his day fasting only thinking of the dishes and delicacies they will have after sunset, then they may only think of this month in black and white; that is, fasting as a time of hunger and thirst and the time after the fast as a time of food, drink and perhaps indulgence. Compare this to the one who doesn’t hold this simple mentality, but one who understands the reality of this month. For them, fasting during this month is not a time to dwell on the lack of food and anticipation for the special dishes that await, but rather a time to race towards good deeds, to increase in their Qur’aan recitation, to make fervent du’aa & istighfaar, to pray their salawaat with the utmost khushoo, and to strive to please ArRahmaan. As for the time after fasting, it is a time for gratitude for the food that has touched our lips, to increase the bonds with family and friends as we break our fast with one another, to make it to the masjid to pray Ishaa and Taraweeh, and to continue with the du’aa, the Qur’aan and the salaah. SubhaanAllah, and once we realize the immense value of this month, the simplistic view of it as the month of special foods shall vanish, rather the remembrance of Allah ta’ala will loom large and be of our utmost priorities.

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Race to His Pleasure

Some of the Salaf used to say:

 

 

“Indeed Allâh, the Most High, has made the month of Ramadân as a competition for His creatures, in which they may race with one another to His pleasure, by obeying Him. Thus, one group comes first and so they prosper and another group comes last and so they fail.”

 

Latâ’if-ul-Ma’ârif of Ibn Rajab: page 246

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Abandoning Ill Speech

Q. If a person speaks forbidden words during the daylight in Ramadan, does it invalidate his fast?

 

A. If we recited the Words of Allah, the Almighty, the All-Powerful:

 

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ


“O you who believe! Observing As-Saum (the fasting) is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become Al-Muttaqûn (the pious). [1]

 

we will know the wisdom behind the obligation f fasting, which is Taqwa and the worship of Allah, the Most Glorified, the Most High. Taqwa means to abandon forbidden things, and without exception, those things include doing that which is commanded and leaving that which is forbidden. For the Prophet (salAllahu ‘alayhi wa salam) said:

“Whoever does not give up untruthful speech and evil actions, Allah is not in need of him leaving his food and drink.”[2]

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`Abdullaah ibn Mas`ood radiallaahu `anhu relates that the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam would supplicate:

“O Allaah! I ask You for guidance, piety, safety and well-being, and contentment and sufficiency.” (Allaahummaa innee as’alukal-hudaa wat-tuqaa wal-`afaafa wal-ghinaa). [Related by Muslim, no 2721]

Imaam as-Sa`dee (d. 1376 AH) – rahimahullaah – said in [Bahjatul Quloobul-Abraar (p.198)]:

“This du`aa (supplication) is from the most comprehensive and beneficial du`aas (supplications), since it includes asking Allaah for well-being with regards to both the Religion and the world.

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Abu Umaamah (radyAllaahu ‘anhu) reported that the Prophet (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “Recite the Qur’aan for indeed it will come on the Day of Judgement as an intercessor for its Ashaab (those who read, memorize and implement it).” [1]

This hadeeth indicates the virtues of reciting the Qur’aan, the greatness of its reward and that it will intercede for its holders on the Day of Judgement towards their entrance into Paradise.

An-Nawaas Ibn Sama’aan (radyAllaahu ‘anhu) reported: “I heard the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) say: ‘The Qur’aan will be brought on the Day of Judgement as well as the people who used to act upon it. Surat-ul-Baqarah and Aali ‘Imraan will then approach them.’ The Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) likened them to three examples, which I have not forgotten afterwards. He (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: ‘As if they were two clouds or two dark black canopies with light between them both or like two flocks of birds stretching their wings in the air pleading for the one who recited them.'” [2]

‘Abdullaah Ibn ‘Amr (radyAllaahu ‘anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “The fast and the Qur’aan will intercede for the servant on the Day of Judgement. The fast will say: ‘My Lord, I restricted him from food and drink, so allow me to intercede for him.’ And the Qur’aan will say: ‘I prevented him from sleeping at night, so allow me to intercede for him.’ So they will be allowed to intercede.” [3]

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