Islam religion: August 2010
Tuesday, 31 August 2010

The Last Ten Days of Ramadan

How to take full advantage and benefit from the last part of Ramadan ?

Though all parts of Ramadan are full of blessings and rewards, its last ten days hold a special status reflected in the recommendations and practices of the Messenger of Allah, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, and his companions. I will focus here on three major practices of the Prophet, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, and his companions during these days.

1-Praying in the last ten nights of Ramadan

Al-Bukhari and Muslim record from 'Aishah that during the last ten days of Ramadan, the Messenger of Allah would wake his wives up during the night and then remain apart from them (that is, being busy in acts of worship). A narration in Muslim states: "He would strive [to do acts of worship] during the last ten days of Ramadan more than he would at any other time."

Aisha reported that With the start of the last ten days of Ramadan, the Prophet used to tighten his waist belt (i.e. work hard) and used to pray all the night, and used to keep his family awake for the prayers. [Bukhari]

2-Performing I`tikaf in the Masjid (seclusion in the Mosque)
Before going to the essential of this last section, let us stop by one of the great Imam of ahl Assunnah wal jama`ah, one of the greatest revivers of the Da`wah and the methodology of the Salaf, Shaikhul-Islam Shamsuddeen Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah who will give us a brain storming admonition.

He says (rahimahu Allah) in Zaad al Ma`aad fi hadyi khairi al `ibaab :

"Since the hearts' rectitude and firmness upon the path towards Allah the Most High, rests upon directing it solely upon Allaah and causing it to turn and give all its attention to Allaah the Most High. Since the disorder of the heart cannot be rectified except by turning to Allaah the Most High, and its disorder will be increased by eating and drinking too much, mixing with the people excessively, speaking profusely and sleeping too much. These will cause it to wander into every valley, and cut it off from its path to Allah, weaken it, divert it or put a halt to it.

From the Mercy of the Mighty and Most Merciful is that He has prescribed for them fasting , which will cut off the excesses of eating and drinking, and empties the hear of its desires which divert it on its journey to Allah the Most High. He prescribed it in due proportion as will be appropriate and will benefit the servant, with regard to this world and the Hereafter, and does not harm him, nor damage what is beneficial for him.

He also prescribed i`tikaf for them, by which is intended that the heart is fully occupied with Allah, the Most High, concentrated upon Him alone, and cut off from preoccupation with the creation. Rather it is engrossed with Him alone, the One free of all defects, such that remembering Him, loving Him and turning to Him takes the place of all anxieties of the heart and its suggestions, such that he is able to overcome them. Thus all his concerns are for Him. His thoughts are all of remembrance of Him, and thinking of how to attain His Pleasure and what will cause nearness to Him. This leads him to feel contented with Allah instead of the people, so that prepares him for being at peace with Him alone on the day of loneliness in the grave, when there is no one else to give comfort, nor anyone to grant solace except Him. So this is the greater goal of I'tikaf"

The book Zaad al Ma`aad as well as all other books of Ibn al-Qayyim are just peaces of art that every Muslim should read. Al-hamdu liLLAH there is a great effort among the followers and revivers of the methodology of the Salaf in translating these books into English. Some of them or part of them are already available. You may want to contact the bookstore of al-Qur'an was-Sunnah Society of North America [USA] or al-Hidaya Publishing in UK.

I`tikaf is the seclusion and staying in the mosque with the intention of becoming closer to Allah. This was the practise of the Prophet, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, during the last ten days of Ramadan especially. He would do it during other months as well.

'Aisha reported that the Messenger of Allah, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, used to practice I`tikaf in the last ten nights of Ramadan and used to say, "Look for the Night of Qadr in the last ten nights of the month of Ramadan" [Bukhari]

Abu Hurairah, radiyallahu 'anhu said: "Allah's Messenger, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, used to perform i`tikaf for ten days every Ramadan, then when it was the year in which he was taken (died), he performed I`tikaf for twenty days. [Bukhari]

'Aisha reported that the Prophet,salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, used to practice I`tikaf in the last ten days of Ramadan till he died and then his wives used to practice I`tikaf after him. [Bukhari]

`Aishah radhiya Allahu `anha also reported that the Prophet, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, "Used to perform i'tikaf in the last ten days of Ramadan until Allah the Mighty and Majestic, took him. [Bukhari and Muslim]

Al-Bukhari records from Abu Said that the Prophet (S) said: "Whoever makes I`tikaf with me is to make I'tikaf during the last ten [nights]."

This Sunnah of the Prophet, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, has been abandoned by many Muslims and it is worth reviving it in this era.

Sayyid Sabiq says in Fiqhus-Sunnah :

The sunnah or preferred i`tikaf has no specific time limit. It can be fulfilled by staying in the mosque with the intention of making i`tikaf for a long or short time. The reward will be according to how long one stays in the mosque. If one leaves the mosque and then returns, he should renew his intention to perform itikaf.

Ya'la ibn Umayyah said: "I secluded myself in the mosque for some time for I`tikaf." 'Ata told him: "That is I`tikaf, as long as you secluded yourself there."

One who is performing Sunnah (like in Ramadan) i'tikaf (i.e. not the obligatory one that is made after a vow) may end his i`tikaf at any time, even if it is before the period he intended to stay.

'Aishah related that if the Prophet intended to make itikaf, he would pray the morning prayer and begin it. One time he wanted to make i`tikaf during the last ten nights of Ramadan, and he ordered his tent to be set up. Aishah reported: "When I saw that, I ordered my tent to be set up, and some of the Prophet's wives followed suit. When he [the Prophet] prayed the morning prayer, he saw all of the tents, and said: "What is this?" They said: "We are seeking obedience [to Allah and His Messenger]." Then he ordered his tent and those of his wives to be taken down, and he delayed his i`tikaf to the first ten days [of Shawwal]."[Bukhari]

The fact that the Messenger of Allah ordered [his and] his wives' tents to be struck down and [he himself left and] asked them to leave the i`tikaf after they have made the intention for it shows that they discarded the i`tikaf after they had begun it. ([] in this small paragraph are some additional comments to clarify things).

It is preferred for the one who is making I`tikaf to perform many supererogatory acts of worship and to occupy himself with prayers, reciting the Qur'an, glorifying and praising Allah, extolling His oneness and His greatness, asking His forgiveness, sending salutations on the Prophet, upon whom be peace, and supplicating Allah - that is, all actions that bring one closer to Allah. Included among these actions is studying and reading books of tafsir and hadith, books on the lives of the Prophets, upon whom be peace, books of fiqh, and so on. It is also preferred to set up a small tent in the courtyard of the mosque as the Prophet did.

Permissible Acts for the Mu`takif (the person performing I`tikaf)

The following acts are permissible for one who is making I'tikaf

(1) The Person may leave his place of I`tikaf to bid farewell to his wife and a Woman can visit her husband who is in I`tikaf}

Safiyyah, radhiya Allahu `anha said : The prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, was making i`tikaf [in the last ten nights of Ramadan], so I came to visit him at night [and his wives were with him and then departed]. I talked with him for a while, then I stood up to leave, [so he said:"Do not hurry for I will accompany you",. He stood along with me to accompany me back -and her dwelling was in the house of Usaamah Ibn Zayd [until when he came to the door of the mosque near the door of Umm Salamah], two men of the Ansaar were passing by, when they saw the Prophet, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, they hastened by, so the Prophet, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, said : "Be at your ease for she is Safiyyah bintu Huyayy." So they said:" 'SubhanAllah, O Messenger of Allah! [we did not have any doubt about you].' He said: "Indeed Shaytan circulates in the son of Adam just as blood circulates, and I feared that he would insert an evil thought" -or he said : "something - into your hearts" [Bukhari and Muslim, in [] are additional narrations from Abu Dawud]

(2) Combing and cutting one's hair, clipping one's nails, cleaning one's body, wearing nice clothes or wearing perfume are all permissible. 'Aishah reported: "The Prophet was Performing itikaf and he would put his head out through the opening to my room and I would clean [or comb in one narration] his hair. I was menstruating at the time." [al-Bukhari, Muslim, and Abu Dawud].

(3) The person may go out for some need that he must perform. 'Aishah reported: "When the Prophet Performed I`tikaf, he brought his head close to me so I could comb his hair, and he would not enter the house except to fulfill the needs a person has." [al-Bukhari, and Muslim].

Ibn al-Mundhir says: "The scholars agree that the one who performs itikaf may leave the mosque in order to answer the call of nature, for this is something that he personally must perform, and he cannot do it in the mosque. Also, if he needs to eat or drink and there is no one to bring him his food, he may leave to get it. If one needs to vomit, he may leave the mosque to do so. For anything that he must do but cannot do in the mosque, he can leave it, and such acts will not void his itikaf, even if they take a long time. Examples of these types of acts would include washing one's self from sexual defilement and cleaning his body or clothes from impurities."

(4) The person may eat, drink, and sleep in the mosque, and he should also keep it clean.

Actions that Nullify the I`tikaf

If a person performs one of the following acts, his I`tikaf will be nullified:

(1) Intentionally leaving the mosque without any need to do so, even if it is for just a short time. In such a case, one would not be staying in the mosque, which is one of the principles of I`tikaf.

(2) Abandoning belief in Islam, as this would nullify all acts of worship. If you ascribe a partner to Allah, your work will fail and you will be among the losers.

(3) Losing one's reason due to insanity or drunkenness, or the onset of menstruation or post-childbirth bleeding, all of which disqualifies a person for itikaf.

(4) Sexual intercourse. Allah says [in meaning]: "But do not associate with your wives while you are in seclusion (I`tikaf) in the mosques. Those are Limits (set by) Allah. Approach not nigh thereto. Thus does Allah make clear His Signs to men: that they may learn self-restraint. [al-Baqara; 2:187]

I`tikaf is not restricted to men only, women also can do it :

'Aisha (the wife of the Prophet) reported that the Prophet, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, used to practice I`tikaf in the last ten days of Ramadan till he died and then his wives used to practice I`tikaf after him.[Bukhari]

Dear Sister! when reading this do not forget the modesty and the Hijab of the wife of the Prophet (S) that you should observe if you intend to perform I`tikaf.

3-Seeking Laylatul-Qadr (the Night of Decree)
It is the greatest night of the year like the Day of `Arafah is the greatest day of the year. It is a night about which Allah reveled a full Surah, Suratul-Qadr [97:1-5] and the 3rd to the 6th verses of Surat ad-Dukhan [44:3-6]

It is the night when the Qur'an was reveled.

It is the night when the Message (the Final and seal of all messages) sent to Mohammad, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, started

It is the night when the light, that would illuminate mankind to the end of life, started

It is the night when every matter of ordainment is decreed

Allah says in what can be translated as :

"Verily! We have sent it (this Qur'aan) down in the Night of Decree (Lailatul-Qadr). And what will make you know what the Night of Decree is? The Night of Decree is better than a thousand months. Therein descend the angels and the Rooh (ie. Jibreel [Gabriel]) by Allaah's Permission with all Decrees, Peace! until the appearance of dawn." [97:1-5]

and in Surat ad-Dukhan :

"We sent it (this Qur'aan) down on a blessed Night. Verily, We are ever warning (mankind of Our Torment). Therein (that Night) is decreed every matter of ordainment. Amran (i.e. a command or this Qur'aan or His Decree of every matter) from Us. Verily, We are ever sending (the Messenger). (As) a Mercy from your Lord. Verily! He is the All-Hearer, the All-Knower. [44:3-6]

A person who misses Laylatul-Qadr is really a deprived person!

Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, said " The blessed month has come to you. Allah has made fasting during it obligatory upon you. During it the gates to Paradise are opened and the gates of Hellfire are locked, and the devils are chained. There is a night [during this month] which is better than a thousand months. Whoever is deprived of its good is really deprived [of something great]. [Ahmad, an-Nisa'i and al-Bayhaqi]

One who misses this blessed night then he has missed much good for no one misses it except one from whom it is withheld. Therefore it is recommended that the Muslim who is eager to be obedient to Allaah should stand in Prayer during this night out of Eemaan and hoping for the great reward, since if he does this, Allaah will forgive his previous sins (1).

What happens to the person who witnesses Laylatul-Qadr? and what should one do?

Abu Hurairah Radhiya Allahu `anhu reported that the Messenger of Allah, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, said : "Whoever stands (in prayer) in Lailatul-Qadr out of Eemaan (faith and sincerity) and seeking reward then his previous sins are forgiven". [Bukhari]

It is recommended to supplicate a lot during this night, it is reported from our mother 'Aishah radhiya Allahu `anha, that she said: "O Messenger of Allah! What if I knew which night Lailatul-Qadr was, then what should I say in it?" He said.- "Say.- (Allahumma innaka 'affuwwun tuhibbul 'afwa fa'fu 'annee.)

"O Allaah You are The One Who pardons greatly, and loves to pardon, so pardon me.". [at-Tirmithi and Ibn Majah with a Sahih Isnad]

When is Laylatul-Qadr ?

It is preferred to seek this night during the last ten odd nights of Ramadan, as the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam,, strove his best in seeking it during that time. We have already mentioned that the Prophet would stay up during the last ten nights, would wake his wives, and then would remain apart from them to worship.

Ibn Abbas reported that the Prophet,salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, said, "Look for the Night of Qadr in the last ten nights of Ramadan ,' on the night when nine or seven or five nights remain out of the last ten nights of Ramadan (i.e. 21, 23, 25, respectively)." [Bukhari]

`Aishah radhiya Allahu `anha said: "Allah's Messenger used to practice I`itikaf in the last ten nights and say: 'Seek out Lailatul-Qadr in the (odd nights) of the last ten of Ramadan." [Bukhari and Muslim]

However if the servant is too weak or unable, then he should at least not let the last seven pass him by, due to what is reported from Ibn 'Umar, who said: Allah's Messenger said: "Seek it in the last ten, and if one of you is too weak or unable then let him not allow that to make him miss the final seven.' [Bukhari and Muslim]

This explains his saying: "I see that your dreams are in agreement (that it is in the last seven) so he who wishes to seek it out then let him seek it in the last seven.' [Bukhari and Muslim]

It is known from the Sunnah, that knowledge of the exact night upon which Lailatul-Qadr falls was taken up because the people argued, 'Ubaadah ibn as- Saamit, radiyalloahu 'anhu, said: The Prophet came out intending to tell us about Lailatul-Qadr, however two men were arguing and he said: "I come out to inform you about Lailatul-Qadr but so and so, and, so and so were arguing, so it was raised up, and perhaps that is better for you, so seek it on the (twenty) ninth and the (twenty) seventh and the (twenty) fifth.'[Bukhari]

Some of the ahadeeth indicate that Lailatul-Qadr is in the last ten nights, while others indicate that it is in the odd nights of the last ten, so the first are general and the second more particular, and the particular has to be given priority over the general. Other ahadeeth state that it is in the last seven - and these are restricted by mention of one who is too weak or unable. So there is no confusion, all the ahadeeth agree and are not contradictory.

In conclusion: The Muslim should seek out Lailatui-Qadr in the odd nights of the last ten: the night of the twenty-first, the twenty-third, the twenty-fifth, the twenty-seventh and the twenty-ninth. If he is too weak or unable to seek it out in all the odd nights, then let him seek it out in the odd nights of the of seven: the night of the twenty-fifth, the twenty-seventh and the twenty-ninth And Allah knows best. (1)

What are the signs of laylatul-Qadr?

Allaah's Messenger , salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, described the morning after Lailatul-Qadr, so that the Muslim may know which day it is. From Ubayy, radhiya Allahu 'anhu, who said: that he, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, said: "On the morning following Lailatui-Qadr the sun rises not having any rays, as if it were a brass dish, until it rises up."[Muslim, Abu Dawud, Tirmithi and Ibn Majah]

Abu Hurairah, radhiya Allahu 'anhu, said : "We were discussing Lailatul-Qadr in the presence of Allah's Messenger so he said : 'Which of you remembers [the night] when the moon arose and was like half a plate?... [Muslim]

Ibn 'Abbaas, radhiya Allahu 'anhuma, said: Allaah's Messenger, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, said: "Lailatul-Qadr is calm and pleasant, neither hot nor cold, the sun arises on its morning being feeble and red." [at-Tayaalisee, Ibn Khuzaimah and al-Bazzaar with a Hasan Isnad]

We pray to Allah All Mighty Most Merciful to bless us this Ramadan by witnessing Laylatul-Qadr

Virtues of Ramadan

Description: Ramadan is a month of Worship. It is a month where all Muslims come together on one basic pillar of Islam without which a persons Islam is incomplete. In this lecture Yasir Qadhi shares with us some of the virtues of Islam.
Main Speaker: Yasir Qadhi



Key Points of This Video

Introduction [start time 00:00]

Allah facilitates acts of good in this month [start time 02:05]

Prophet climbing the three steps [start time 03:00]

What do you have to get forgiveness? [start time 05:30]

Night of Power [start time 07:35]

Special door of paradise for people that fast [start time 08:01]

Conclusion [start time 09:18]

Ramadan and Fasting

Description: An overview about fasting and the month of Ramadan.

Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar, can be 29 or 30 days long. An Islamic month begins with the sighting of the new crescent in the western horizon, immediately after sunset. Muslims look toward the western horizon for the new moon on the 29th day of Sha’ban, the eighth month. If the new moon is sighted, Ramadan has begun with the sunset but fasting begins with the next dawn. If the new moon is not sighted on this 29th day, Muslims complete 30 days of Sha’ban (the previous month) and Ramadan begins the following day.

The Significance of Ramadan and Fasting

God says in the Quran:

“O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you, even as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may attain God-consciousness.” (Quran 2:183)

“The month of Ramadan in which was revealed the Quran, a guidance for humankind and clear proofs for the guidance and the criterion. So whoever of you sights (the crescent on the first night of) the month (of Ramadan) must observe the fasts that month, and whoever is ill or on a journey, the same number from other days. God intends for you ease, and He does not want for you difficulty. (So you) must complete the same number, and that you must magnify God for having guided you so that you may be grateful to Him.” (2:185)
Accordingly, the month of Ramadan is called the month of the Quran. Therefore, Muslims recite the Quran frequently in this month.

Sawm or Fasting

Sawm (fasting) begins with dawn and ends with sunset. Muslims rise before dawn, eat Sahur (pre-dawn meal) and drink an adequate amount of liquids for the preparation of sawm. Eating and drinking stops at dawn. During the day no eating, drinking or sexual activity is allowed. In addition, a Muslim must adhere to the moral code of Islam strictly as failure can violate the requirements of fasting.
Fasting in the month of Ramadan is an act of worship required of all Muslims who have attained puberty.

Women who are having their menstrual period or who have not fully recovered from childbirth postpone the fast until they are completely out of their given conditions. In addition, those who are ill or on travel may choose to postpone their fast.
Muslims fast because God has commanded them to do so. However, they may also think about the benefits of fasting that include developing control over hunger, thirst and sexual urges, training to be a good moral person and testing sincerity to the Creator. During the fast, Muslims may conduct their business as usual.
The fast is broken immediately after sunset usually by eating dates and drinking water or juice. However, any lawful food or drink may be used to break the fast. This is followed by the Maghrib salah (after sunset prayer) which is followed by a complete meal. After a brief rest, Muslims go to the mosque to offer the ‘Isha salah (night prayer) and then a special night prayer, called taraweeh.

Taraweeh

This nightly congregational salah (prayer) is performed after the regular night prayer. Traditionally, a Hafiz of the Quran, - a person who has memorized the whole Quran (in Arabic) - leads the prayer.

He recites the Quran in small portions, in proper sequence, every night and completes the recitation of the whole Quran before the end of the month of Ramadan. Every Muslim who attends such prayers regularly gets the opportunity of listening to the recitation of the whole Quran by the end of the month.

If a Hafiz of the Quran is not available, the Muslim who has memorized the most in the group leads the prayer and recites according to his ability. Many Islamic scholars cite the Sunnah (path of the Prophet Muhammad) of the Prophet – may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him - that he always prayed during the night alone at his home whether it was Ramadan or not and same was the habit of many of his great companions.

Ramadan Generosity

The month of Ramadan brings many blessings multiplied for those who do good. During this month people are more generous, more cordial, friendlier and more ready than other times of the year to do good deeds. The poor and the needy receive food, clothing and money from the well-off in the community. Many people go to the mosque in the neighborhood for fast-breaking and meals. People in the neighborhood send fruit, food and drinks to the mosque – the atmosphere is that of a friendly dinner every evening of the month.
Well-known contributors of the Muslim community find themselves surrounded by the needy people for donations. Zakat, a wealth purifying alms, and donations are given at this time of the year since many Muslims wish to take the opportunity of multiplied rewards from God.

Laylat al-Qadr

This is the night of the Qadr. The term Al-Qadr has been frequently translated as “the power”. A better translation may be “the value” or “the decree” because God says the value of this night is greater than one thousand months, a lifetime of over eighty-three years! God sends His decrees in this night. This is the night when the Quran was first revealed at the time of Prophet Muhammad. God says in the Quran:

“We have indeed revealed this (the Quran) in the Night of Value (or Measure). And what will explain to you what the Night of Value is? The Night of Value is better than a thousand months. Therein come down angels and the Spirit (the angel Gabriel) by God’s permission with all decrees. (That night is) Peace until the rising of the dawn.” (Quran 97:1-5)

The Night of Decree is a gift to mankind from God. However, it is not clear which night is Laylat al-Qadr. Some reports by companions of the Prophet allude it to be the 27th night of the month of Ramadan, but many more sayings point to any of the odd date nights during the last third of the month of Ramadan.

According to authentic teachings of the Prophet Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him, Muslims are advised to spend the 21st, 23rd, 25th, 27th and 29th nights of Ramadan in worship and doing good works to assure finding Laylat al-Qadr. A portion of Muslims stay up all night in prayers and good works, however, the Prophet and his companions used to sleep at least one-third of the night.
In some Muslim countries, the 27th of Ramadan is a holiday to enable people to rest during the day after all night of worship.[1] Schools are closed from the 27th of Ramadan through the 2nd of Shawwal (5 to 6 days) to combine Laylat al-Qadr and Eid al-Fitr (An Islamic celebration that starts with the end of Ramadan) observances.

I’tekaf or Seclusion

The practice of the Prophet Muhammad was to spend the last ten days and nights of Ramadan in a mosque. Following his practice, it is considered, an act of worship for someone to go in seclusion in a neighborhood mosque. People in seclusion spend their time in various forms of dhikr (remembrance of God), such as performing extra prayers, recitation and study of the Quran, study of the Hadith (sayings of the Prophet Muhammad), and exhorting each other to be good through obeying God and His Messenger.

Since people in seclusion are not permitted to go outside the mosque except for emergencies, they sleep in the mosque and use available facilities at the mosque.
The food for the people in seclusion is provided either by their own families or people in the community. Seclusion ends, generally, at the declaration of sighting of the moon or at the end of the month of Ramadan. For busy people a shorter version of seclusion is allowed, such as one night, one day or a few days.

Sadaqat al-Fitr

In general, any material help extended to the poor, needy and to those who ask and deserve so is called Sadaqah. Sadaqat al-Fitr, which is also called Zakat al-Fitr, is the obligatory material help extended to the poor of the society before the Eid prayers, preferably to be given early enough for the poor to prepare for the celebration. In North America, the estimated amount of $5 to $8 worth of staple food (such as rice) is to be given on behalf of each member of the donor’s family, including infants.

Eid al-Fitr

The end of the fasting month is celebrated on the first of Shawwal, the 10th month, which follows Ramadan. On the 29th of Ramadan after sunset, people go out in the open looking for a new crescent in the western horizon where the sun sets. If the crescent is sighted, the end of Ramadan is declared. If the crescent is not sighted, Ramadan is extended by one day.
On the day of Eid, people take a bath or shower in the early morning, eat breakfast, wear their best clothes, use perfume and proceed to the place of Eid congregation while pronouncing takbeerat, saying, “God is the Greatest, there is no deity but God and all praise belongs to God.

” Muslims pronounce takbeerat in their homes, in the street and at the place of congregation while waiting for the leader, the Imam. It was the practice of the Prophet Muhammad to hold Eid prayer congregations in open grounds. Following the practice of the Prophet Muslims are advised to hold Eid prayers in open grounds. In Muslim countries with warm climate there are designated Eid prayer grounds. However, in North America Muslims rent halls at convention centers or major hotels.
The Imam leads the prayers at the appointed time, and then delivers a sermon. At the end of the sermon, people supplicate, greet, embrace and congratulate each other for the successful completion of Ramadan and ask God for the acceptance of their efforts in His obedience.
During the day, people visit each other and children receive gifts. In some countries, people go for picnics and other gatherings. Eid celebrations may be arranged at work or at any social settings. Essentially, Eid is a day of thanks to God and a day of meeting family and friends.

Umrah, or Minor Hajj, in Ramadan


There is a report from Prophet Muhammad saying that performing Umrah in the month of Ramadan is equal to performing a major or complete Hajj.

Hajj is the pilgrimage to Mecca. Hajj is the enactment of some of the trials and tribulations of Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him), his wife Hagar and his oldest son, Ishmael. Complete Hajj lasts for five days but Umrah is completed in a couple of hours. Umrah is only a small part of the Hajj. An animal sacrifice may be offered at the completion of Umrah. Umrah may be performed anytime during the year but it has special significance in the month of Ramadan.

Footnotes:

[1] In the Arabic calendar, the night of the 27th means the night following the day of the 26th day of that month.

A Month of Blessings

Description: Generosity in Ramadan.

One of the qualities of human nature embedded in Islam is generosity. The need to be generous towards family, friends, neighbours, strangers and even enemies, is mentioned repeatedly throughout the Quran and the authentic traditions of Prophet Muhammad. There is no better time to talk about generosity then in the Islamic month of Ramadan.

Consequently, Muslims are examining their lives and asking themselves if their day-to-day actions are pleasing to their Creator. The intense, devotion of Ramadan has caused the believers to examine their hearts and minds.

Well known as a month of fasting, those new to Islam have discovered that Ramadan is also a month of charity and kindness. The fasting days and prayer-filled nights have softened hearts and created ripples of compassion and generosity. This month of devotion arrived quickly, settled softly, and God’s blessings, mercy, and forgiveness descended. Ramadan’s blessings have welled into a river of generosity.

“The Prophet was the most generous amongst the people, and he used to be more so in the month of Ramadan when Gabriel (angel) visited him, and Gabriel used to meet him on every night of Ramadan till the end of the month. The Prophet used to recite the Quran to Gabriel, and when Gabriel met him, he used to be more generous than a fast wind (which causes rain and welfare).” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)

Throughout the 29/30 days of fasting, Muslims give generously. They reach into their pockets and wallets to give to charities, and those in need, both openly, and secretly. However, charity in Islam is not only giving money.

It is any act of kindness or generosity given with an open heart and a desire to please God. Charity is something as simple as a smile or as grand a gesture as building a school or a hospital; charity is also every kind or generous act in between.

Muslims are encouraged to be generous at all times, however Ramadan serves as a reminder. When the worries of the world and the trials of life are overwhelming frail human beings tend to forget that God has provided blessings too numerous to count. Ramadan reminds us that these blessings are not meant to be clutched to the chest or hoarded away. God expects us to be generous and spend out of what He has provided.

God is Al Kareem, the most generous. Everything originates from Him and everything will eventually return to Him, it therefore makes sense to consider our possessions and wealth trusts. We are obligated to preserve, protect, and ultimately share whatever we have been provided with.

“Say: “Truly, my Lord enlarges the provision for whom He wills of His slaves, and also restricts it) for him, and whatsoever you spend of anything (in God’s Cause), He will replace it. And He is the Best of providers.” (Quran 34:39)

Throughout Ramadan Muslims look to the examples of Prophet Muhammad and his companions and contemplate the true meaning of generosity. It does not mean to give away something that you no longer require. It means to give of those things that you love and desire or in many cases even need.

Aisha (the wife of the Prophet) said, “A lady, along with her two daughters came to me asking for some alms, but she found nothing with me except one date which I gave to her and she divided it between her two daughters.” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)

The men and women around Prophet Muhammad understood the true value of generosity. They recognized that kind and generous acts are an investment in the future. Our good deeds, thoughtful words, and acts of random kindness will be rewarded abundantly in the hereafter. Whatever money we spend for the sake of pleasing God will be returned to us many times over. Whatever possessions we give freely, will be replaced, if not in this life, in the paradise of the hereafter.

While generosity is a rewardable act at any time of the year, during Ramadan our good deeds and acts of kindness and generosity will be rewarded many times over. It is a month of mercy, when God allows us to reap rewards that far outweigh any sins we may have accumulated throughout the year.

Ramadan is a month filled with reminders of God’s generosity, kindness, and forgiveness. God forgives the faults and sins of humankind even though they may be as numerous as the foam on the sea,[1] and His forgiveness and mercy are not restricted to Ramadan.

However, this month, the month that contains a day better than 1000 months (Quran 97:1-5) is sign of God’s love for humankind. Ramadan is chance to set aside 30 days for special devotion and generosity.

The fasting of Ramadan reminds the believers that the world is filled with people who are unable to find enough food or drink for their needs. Ramadan is a chance for the believers to be generous with their time, their wealth, and their possessions.

Generosity and random acts of kindness truly make the heart happy. Any one, who has given from their wealth or possessions with a clear pure heart, wanting only to please God, knows just how joyful these acts can be. However, what of those who have not even one dollar to spare? God’s generosity knows no bounds therefore even in the direst circumstances human beings are able to be generous.

The people came to the Prophet Muhammad and asked, “If someone has nothing to give, what will he do?” He said, “He should work with his hands and benefit himself and also give in charity (from what he earns).” The people further asked, “If he cannot find even that?” He replied, “He should help the needy who appeal for help.” Then the people asked, “If he cannot do that?” He replied, “Then he should perform good deeds and keep away from evil deeds and this will be regarded as charitable deeds.” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)

Ramadan is known as the month of fasting, Ramadan is a gift from God, a manifestation of His mercy and reminder of human kind’s inherent goodness. Ramadan is the month of charity and generosity.

Footnotes:

[1] Saheeh Bukhari

Welcome Ramadan

















Thursday, 5 August 2010

The Proof that Islam is the Truth

1-The Proof that Islam is the Truth




2-Proof Of Islam - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green




3 -Preservation Of The Qur'an - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



4 -Oral Transmission Of The Qur'an - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



5 -The Preservation of The Sayings of The Prophet - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - A.R. Green



6 -The Miracle Of The Arabic Language - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



7-Stories of Those Who Heard The Quran - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



8 -Embryology - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green




9 - Scientific Facts in the Quran (Part 1) - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green





10- Scientific Facts in the Quran (Part 2) - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



11 - Historical Facts - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



12 - Witness of The People of The Book - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



13 - Muhammad PBUH in the Bible (Part 1) - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



14 - Muhammad PBUH in the Bible (Part 2) - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



15 - Prophecies of the Prophet PBUH - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green



16 - Signs of the Last Day - The Proof That Islam Is The Truth - Abdur-Raheem Green

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