Friday Khutbah (26 Jan 2007): Enjoining Good and Forbidding Evil: Combining The Foundation and the Methodology

All praise is due to Allah the Lord of the worlds. Peace and blessings of Allah to His Messenger Muhammad, his family and followers until the end of the World.

The foundation

In Islam enjoining good and forbidding evil is one of the duties of a Muslim. Allah said:

You [true believers in Islamic Monotheism, and real followers of Prophet Muhammad SAW and his Sunnah (legal ways, etc.)] are the best of peoples ever raised up for mankind; you enjoin Al-Maâ??ruf (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam has ordained) and forbid Al-Munkar (polytheism, disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden), and you believe in Allah. And had the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) believed, it would have been better for them; among them are some who have faith, but most of them are Al-Fasiqun (disobedient to Allah – and rebellious against Allah’s Command).

Al Imran (3) 110[1]

In another verse,

Let there arise out of you a group of people inviting to all that is good (Islam), enjoining Al-Maâ??ruf (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do) and forbidding Al-Munkar (polytheism and disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden). And it is they who are the successful.

Al Imrân (03) Verse 104.

In his Tafsir, Ibn Kathir[2] said: Allah said, (Let there arise out of you a group of people) that calls to righteousness, enjoins all that is good and forbids evil in the manner Allah commanded, (And it is they who are the successful.) Ad-Dahhak[3] said, “They are a special group of the Companions and a special group of those after them, that is those who perform Jihad and the scholars.” The objective of this Ayah is that there should be a segment of this Muslim Ummah fulfilling this task, even though it is also an obligation on every member of this Ummah, each according to his ability Tafsir Ibn Kathir Vol 2 Page 232 (Darussalam English Translation)

The Consequences

This duty is so important such that neglecting on acting upon it is equated with the collective punishment of Allah upon the people, whether they are good or bad if those who are good amongst them neglect to implement it. Imam Bukhari collected a hadeeth narrated By Zainab bint Jahsh:

The Prophet got up from his sleep with a flushed red face and said, “None has the right to be worshipped but Allah. Woe to the Arabs, from the Great evil that is nearly approaching them. Today a gap has been made in the wall of Gog and Magog like this.” (Sufyan illustrated by this forming the number 90 or 100 with his fingers.) It was asked, “Shall we be destroyed though there are righteous people among us?” The Prophet said, “Yes, if evil increased.”

Vol 9, Book 88. Book of Afflictions and the end of the world. Hadeeth number 181[4]

And its fulfillment is connected to our safety:

O you who believe! Take care of your ownselves, [do righteous deeds, fear Allah much (abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has forbidden) and love Allah much (perform all kinds of good deeds which He has ordained)]. If you follow the right guidance and enjoin what is right (Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do) and forbid what is wrong (polytheism, disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden) no hurt can come to you from those who are in error. The return of you all is to Allah, then He will inform you about (all) that which you used to do.

Al Maaidah (5): 105

â?¦and Allah will grant us power in the land:

Those (Muslim rulers) who, if We give them power in the land, (they) order for Iqamat-as-Salat. [i.e. to perform the five compulsory congregational Salat (prayers) (the males in mosques)], to pay the Zakat and they enjoin Al-Ma’ruf (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and forbid Al-Munkar (i.e. disbelief, polytheism and all that Islam has forbidden) [i.e. they make the Qur’an as the law of their country in all the spheres of life]. And with Allah rests the end of (all) matters (of creatures).

Al Hajj (22): 41

The Methodology

The methodology of enjoining good and forbidding evil is enshrined in a hadeeth collected by Imam Muslim:

It is narrated on the authority of Tariq b. Shihab: It was Marwan who initiated (the practice) of delivering khutbah (address) before the prayer on the ‘Id day. A man stood up and said: Prayer should precede khutbah. He (Marwan) remarked, This (practice) has been done away with. Upon this Abu Sa’id remarked: This man has performed (his duty) laid on him. I heard the Messenger of Allah as saying: He who amongst you sees something abominable should modify it with the help of his hand; and if he has not strength enough to do it, then he should do it with his tongue, and if he has not strength enough to do it, (even) then he should (abhor it) from his heart, and that is the least of faith.

Book 1 Faith. Hadeeth No. 79

In another narration:

It is narrated on the authority ‘Abdullah b. Mas’ud that the Messenger of Allah (may peace and blessings be upon him) observed: Never a Prophet had been sent before me by Allah towards his nation who had not among his people (his) disciples and companions who followed his ways and obeyed his command. Then there came after them their successors who said whatever they did not practise, and practised whatever they were not commanded to do. He who strove against them with his hand was a believer: he who strove against them with his tongue was a believer, and he who strove against them with his heart was a believer and beyond that there is no faith even to the extent of a mustard seed.

Sahih Muslim. Book 1. Faith. Hadith 0081.

It is done according to position and authority

‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar had said, “I heard Allah’s Apostle saying, ‘All of you are guardians and responsible for your wards and the things under your care. The Imam (i.e. ruler) is the guardian of his subjects and is responsible for them and a man is the guardian of his family and is responsible for them. A woman is the guardian of her husband’s house and is responsible for it. A servant is the guardian of his master’s belongings and is responsible for them.’ I thought that he also said, ‘A man is the guardian of his father’s property and is responsible for it. All of you are guardians and responsible for your wards and the things under your care.”

Sahih Bukhari Vol 2, Book 13. Friday Prayer. Hadith 018

Implementing the Methodology with Wisdom

Enjoining good and forbidding evil is essentially inviting people to Allah. In this regard, Allah said in the Qurâ??an:

Invite (mankind, O Muhammad) to the Way of your Lord (i.e. Islam) with wisdom (i.e. with the Divine Inspiration and the Qur’an) and fair preaching, and argue with them in a way that is better. Truly, your Lord knows best who has gone astray from His Path, and He is the Best Aware of those who are guided.

Surah/Chapter 016 – An-Nahl. Verse 125.

Implementing with wisdom means we must make sure according to the best of our abilities that when we enjoin good or forbid evil, the end result would be beneficial. In other words a greater good should be achieved or a greater evil is prevented.

There are many circumstances when we want to do good yet the result is harm. One example is praying the Tahajjud prayer but neglecting to pray the Fajr prayer due to exhaustion. One does not do the voluntary acts of worship in lieu of the Waajib. Because of this one does not pray the Sunnah prayer once the Iqaamah has been announced.

Likewise there are also circumtances where we want to avert harm yet the result is greater harm. To illustrate this point, we will mention the hadeeth narrated by Anas bin Malik in Sahih Muslim:

A Bedouin came and passed urine in one corner of the mosque. The people shouted at him but the Prophet stopped them till he finished urinating. The Prophet ordered them to spill a bucket of water over that place and they did so.

Vol 1 Book 4 Ablutions Hadeeth no. 234

Had the Prophet sallallahu alaihi wasallam did not prevent the people from stopping the man from urinating, that man would have had splashed his urine all over the place, or in peopleâ??s clothings instead of confining it only to the place where he is urinating. Further, abruptly stopping the urination process could have other bad effects to a personâ??s health. Thus a greater harm was prevented by allowing some lesser harm to occur.

Ask Allahâ??s help

There is a Sunnah prayer called Istikhaara prayer. One is supposed to perform this prayer if he/she is going to decide on something.

Finally enjoining good and forbidding evil should be done for the sake of Allah alone. Further it should be done according to the way of the Prophet sallallahu alaihi wasallam.

We ask Allah that if we perform this obligation, we will be from those who are rewarded and be those whose scale of good deeds in the Judgment Day is heavy.

Narrated By ‘Amr bin Al-‘As: That he heard Allah’s Apostle saying, “If a judge gives a verdict according to the best of his knowledge and his verdict is correct (i.e. agrees with Allah and His Apostle’s verdict) he will receive a double reward, and if he gives a verdict according to the best of his knowledge and his verdict is wrong, (i.e. against that of Allah and His Apostle) even then he will get a reward.”

Summary Muslims are required to enjoin good and forbid evil. Its implementation and neglect are linked to our success and failure respectively. Its effectuation is done with wisdom and according to oneâ??s authority. Finally it is Allah who grants success.

[1] All Qurâ??anic quotations are taken from islamsoft solutions. Downloadable free from http://www.islamtomorrow.com/
[2] A Great Scholar of Qurâ??an interpretation. http://www.tafsir.com/
[3] A Great Scholar amongst the early generations of Muslims.
[4] All Hadeeth quotations are taken from islamsoft solutions.

Source: albangsamori

Etiquettes Of Jumu’ah

Some Etiquettes of Jumu’ah: Having a Proper Wudoo’ & Being Silent

By : Aboo Uways ‘Abdullah ‘Alee (Rahimahullah)

From the regulations regarding Jumu’ah, the Sunnah and the manners of Jumu’ah is that you :

  1. Make ghusl as it is waajib upon everyone who has reached the age of puberty.
  2. Wear the best of your clothing.
  3. Using oil
  4. Walking to the Jumua’h is better than riding if there is no difficulty in your walking.
  5. Go early to the place where Jumua’h is going to be held.
  6. Making Tahayatull Masjid
  7. Reading Suratul Kahf
  8. Sending peace and prayers upon Muhammad ibn Abdulah  sallallahu alayhe was salam
  9. Not going over the necks of people
  10. Total and complete silence while listening to the  khutbah
  11. Using the time during Jumu’ah when du’aa  is said to be answered to make du’aa

The actions of Jumu’ah are of three types :

  1. The actions you do before Jumu’ah – ghusl, wearing your best clothing, using an oil, being early
  2. The actions you do after the salaah – making du’aa at the proper time ( the last hour before the setting of the sun )
  3. The actions you do before the salaah  – reading suratul Kahf , sending prayers and peace upon the Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam and like this

The Messenger of Allah sallallahu alayhe was salaam said al Jumu’ah is the best of the days and is the greatest of the days with Allah than Eid al Adha or the day of Fitr. It had five qualities. Allah created Adam on the day of Jumu’ah and Allah made Adam come down to earth upon that day. Also Allah caused Adam to die at that time. And in this hour is that no servant asks Allah for something except that Allah will give it to him as long as he doesnt ask for that which is haraam. And on friday the hour will be established. And there is no angel that is close, there is no heaven, no earth, no wind, no mountain, no ocean except that is fearful on yawm al Jumu’ah. It is fearful on the day of friday for fear that Kiyamah will be established on that day.

The Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam said “The best of your days is yawmul Jumu’ah. On that day Adam was created. And on that day the soul was blown into him. And on that day the people will fall out before the kiyamah. Send a lot of prayers upon me because your prayers come to me. “And they said O RasoolAllah, How can our prayers come to you when you have become dust or bones? He answered “Allah has forbidden the earth from eating the Prophets of Allah.”

Abu Hurairah radiallahu anhu narrates that the Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam said “Friday prayer to Friday prayer is an expiation of ones sins he commits between those two fridays as long as he doesnt fall into the Major sins.”

Aus ibn Aus said , I heard the Prophet sallalahu alayhe was salaam say “Whoever makes Ghusl  on the day of Jumu’ah and comes early and walks to Jumu’ah , comes close to the imam , and does not take his attention from the  imam, he will have for every step he took a reward for a full year of fasting and standing in prayer. [ Abi Dawud ]

The fact of  listening and being silent during the khutbah

Abu Hurairah radiallahu anhu said that the Prophet sallallahu alayhe said “If you were to say to your companion sitting beside you on the day of Friday when the Imam is giving the Khutbah that he should be quiet , then you have done that which wipes away the reward of Jumu’ah.”

Ubay ibn Kab radiallahu anhu narrates that The Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam recited surah at Tabarak while he was standing and reminding us of the days of Allah, while Abu Darda or Abu Darr touched me , trying to get my attention. He asked a question regarding Ilm, “When was this surah revealed? I have not heard it until this time”. I pointed to him to be quiet. When the salaat was over he said , “I asked you when was this surah revealed and you didnt tell me”. I said , You will have no reward for you salaah today because you have done that which wipes it away. So he went to the Messenger of Allah sallallahu alayhe was salaam and mentioned to him what was said “Ubay has told the truth.”

Another narration that speaks about this issue is one regarding Abdullah ibn Masud radiallahu anhu and he was asking a question also. Ibn Masud sat by Ubay ibn Kab and he asked him something or talked to him about something. Ubay didnt speak to him at all. Ibn Masud thought that he had some problem with him. So when the Prophet sallalahu alayhe was salama finished the salaat , Ibn Masud said, “Ya Ubay, what stopped you from responding to me?” Ubay replied, “its as if you didnt even make Jumu’ah with us because you were talking”. Ibn Masud asked RasoolAllah sallallahu alayhe was salaam , and mentioned what was said. The Messenger of Allah said “and obey Ubay.”

So this is regarding the matter of being silent when the Imam is giving a Khutbah of Jumu’ah.

End of First Part Khutbah

Jaabir radiallahu anhu said that the Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam said , “No person makes a ghusl properly on yawm al Jumu’ah and purifies himself in the best way , uses some oil, and he leaves his home not seperating between two , then he prays what has been written for him to pray, then he is silent if the imam talks, except that it will be forgiven for him the sins that he has committed between that friday and the next friday.”

So this speaks about cleanliness, being early , and being quiet. Abu Hurairah relates from the Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam,” Allah misled away from the day of Jumu’ah those who were before us. The Yahud took Saturday and the Christians took Sunday. And there will be forever followers behind us in  this issue until the Day of Judgement. We are the last of the people of the dunyah, and the first of those to be judged before the rest  of the creation.

Jabir radiallahu anhu narrated that an individual entered into the masjid while the Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam was giving a khutbah. And the Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam stopped his Khutbah and said to him “Have you prayed?” He said no, and the Prophet sallallahu alayhe was salaam said, “Stand up and pray two rakaat.”  So this is speaking about Tahayatul Masjid, stand up and pray two rakaat.

Another hadeeth, and we have mentioned some of it, but this is in different wording. “There is no person who purifies himself on the day of Jumu’ah as he has been ordered , and he leaves his house and comes to salaatul Jumu’ah and he is quiet until salaat is finished except there is expiation for that which has preceded this jumu’ah.”

Some may say that this is an issue that we know. Some may say that this is an issue that we dont need to be reminded of. But we have been told in the Quran to remind them , for the reminder benefits the believer. And as has been shown through experience, many times people forget these hadeeth and these narrations and we forget that Jumu’ah is from the great symbols of Allah and it must have some kind of glorification in our hearts because this is from the taqwa, from the fear of Allah subhana wa ta’alaa. It is an honourable day, it is a great day, it is a day full of virtues and blessings for the one who observes it – as he should observe it , sticking to the book of Allah tabaraka wa ta’alaa and the Sunnah of the Messenger sallallahu alayhe was salaam.

Source: http://www.salafitapes.com/

The Five Pillars Of Islam

From www.islamworld.net

Shahadah

The first pillar of Islam is that a Muslim believe and declare his faith by saying the Shahadah (lit. ‘witness’), also known as the Kalimah:

La ilaha ila Allah; Muhammadur-rasul Allah. ‘There is no god but Allah; Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.’
This declaration contains two parts. The first part refers to God Almighty, the Creator of everything, the Lord of the Worlds; the second part refers to the Messenger, Muhammad (pbuh) a prophet and a human being, who received the revelation through the Archangel Gabriel, and taught it to mankind.
By sincerely uttering the Shahadah the Muslim acknowledges Allah as the sole Creator of all, and the Supreme Authority over everything and everyone in the universe. Consequently the Muslim closes his/her heart and mind to loyalty, devotion and obedience to, trust in, reliance on, and worship of anything or anyone other than Allah. This rejection is not confined merely to pagan gods and goddesses of wood and stone and created by human hands and imaginations; this rejection must extend to all other conceptions, superstitions, ideologies, ways of life, and authority figures that claim supreme devotion, loyalty, trust, love, obedience or worship. This entails, for example, the rejection of belief in such common things as astrology, palm reading, good luck charms, fortune-telling and psychic readings, in addition to praying at shrines or graves of “saints”, asking the dead souls to intercede for them with Allah. There are no intercessors in Islam, nor any class of clergy as such; a Muslim prays directly and exclusively to Allah.

Belief in the prophethood of Muhammad (pbuh) entails belief in the guidance brought by him and contained in his Sunnah (traditions of his sayings and actions), and demands of the Muslim the intention to follow his guidance faithfully. Muhammad (pbuh) was also a human being, a man with feelings and emotions, who ate, drank and slept, and was born and died, like other men. He had a pure and upright nature, extraordinary righteousness, and an unwavering faith in Allah and commitment to Islam, but he was not divine. Muslims do not pray to him, not even as an intercessor, and Muslims abhor the terms “Mohamedan” and “Mohamedanism”.

Salah

Prayer (Salah), in the sense of worship, is the second pillar of Islam. Prayer is obligatory and must be performed five times a day. These five times are dawn (Fajr), immediately after noon (Dhuhr), mid-afternoon (‘Asr), sunset (Maghrib), and early night (Isha’). Ritual cleanliness and ablution are required before prayer, as are clean clothes and location, and the removal of shoes. One may pray individually or communally, at home, outside, virtually any clean place, as well as in a mosque, though the latter is preferred. Special is the Friday noon prayer, called Jum’ah. It, too, is obligatory and is to be done in a mosque, in congregation. It is accompanied by a sermon (Khutbah), and it replaces the normal Dhuhr prayer.

There is no hierarchical clerical authority in Islam, no priests or ministers. Prayers are led by any learned person who knows the Qur’an and is chosen by the congregation. He (or she, if the congregation is all women) is called the imam. There is also no minimum number of congregants required to hold communal prayers. Prayer consists of verses from the Qur’an and other prayers, accompanied by various bodily postures – standing, bowing, prostrating and sitting. They are said in Arabic, the language of the revelation, though personal supplications (Du’ah) can be offered in one’s own language. Worshippers face the Qiblah, the direction of the Ka’bah in the city of Makkah.

The significance of prayer lies in one’s maintaining a continuous link to God five times a day, which helps the worshipper avoid misdeeds if he/she performs the prayers sincerely. In addition it promotes discipline, God-consciousness and placing one’s trust in Allah alone, and the importance of striving for the Hereafter. When performed in congregation it also provides a strong sense of community, equality and brotherhood/sisterhood.

Fasting (Sawm)

The fourth pillar of Islam is fasting. Allah prescribes daily fasting for all able, adult Muslims during the whole of the month of Ramadan, the ninth month of the lunar calendar, beginning with the sighting of the new moon. Exempted from the fast are the very old and the insane. On the physical side, fasting is from first light of dawn until sundown, abstaining from food, drink, and sexual relations. On the moral, behavioral side, one must abstain from lying, malicious gossip, quarreling and trivial nonsense.

Those who are sick, elderly, or on a journey, and women who are menstruating, pregnant, or nursing are permitted to break the fast, but must make up an equal number of days later in the year. If physically unable to do so, they must feed a needy person for each day missed. Children begin to fast (and to observe the prayers) from puberty, although many start earlier.

Although fasting is beneficial to the health, it is regarded principally as a method of self-purification. By cutting oneself off from worldly pleasures and comforts, even for a short time, the fasting person gains true sympathy for those who go hungry regularly, and achieves growth in his spiritual life, learning discipline, self-restraint, patience and flexibility.

In addition to the fast proper, one is encouraged to read the entire Qur’an. In addition, special prayers, called Tarawih, are held in the mosque every night of the month, during which a whole section of the Qur’an (Juz’) is recited, so that by the end of the month the entire Qur’an has been completed. These are done in remembrance of the fact that the revelation of the Qur’an to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was begun during Ramadan.

During the last ten days – though the exact day is never known and may not even be the same every year – occurs the Night of Power (Laylat al-Qadr). To spend that night in worship is equivalent to a thousand months of worship, i.e. Allah’s reward for it is very great.

On the first day of the following month, after another new moon has been sighted, a special celebration is made, called ‘Id al-Fitr. A quantity of staple food is donated to the poor (Zakat al-Fitr), everyone has bathed and put on their best, preferably new, clothes, and communal prayers are held in the early morning, followed by feasting and visiting relatives and friends.

There are other fast days throughout the year. Muslims are encouraged to fast six days in Shawwal, the month following Ramadan, Mondays and Thursdays, and the ninth and tenth, or tenth and eleventh of Muharram, the first month of the year. The tenth day, called Ashurah, is also a fast day for the Jews (Yom Kippur), and Allah commanded the Muslims to fast two days to distinguish themselves from the People of the Book.

While fasting per se is encouraged, constant fasting, as well as monasticism, celibacy, and otherwise retreating from the real world, are condemned in Islam. Fasting on the two festival days, ‘Id al-Fitr and ‘Id al-Adha, the feast of the Hajj, is strictly forbidden.

Zakah

The third pillar of Islam is the alms-tax (Zakah). It is a tax on wealth, payable on various categories of property, notably savings and investments, produce, inventory of goods, salable crops and cattle, and precious metals, and is to be used for the various categories of distribution specified by Islamic law. It is also an act of purification through sharing what one has with others.

The rationale behind this is that Muslims believe that everything belongs to God, and wealth is held by man as a trust. This trust must be discharged, moreover, as instructed by God, as that portion of our wealth legally belongs to other people and must be given to them. If we refuse and hoard this wealth, it is considered impure and unclean. If, for example one were to use that wealth for charity or to finance one’s pilgrimage to Makkah, those acts would also be impure, invalid, and of course unrewarded. Allah says:

“Of their wealth, take alms so you may purify and sanctify them.” [9:103]
The word Zakah means purification and growth. Our possessions are purified by setting aside that portion of it for those in need. Each Muslim calculates his or her own Zakah individually.
For most purposes this involves the payment each year of 2.5% of one’s capital, provided that this capital reaches a certain minimum amount that which is not consumed by its owner. A generous person can pay more than this amount, though it is treated and rewarded as voluntary charity (Sadaqah). This amount of money is provided to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor, and can be used in many useful projects for the welfare of the community.

Historically the pillar of Zakah became mandatory on Muslims form the second year after the Hijrah, 622 C.E. It is mentioned more than thirty times in the Qur’an, usually in the same breath as Salah. So important is this pillar that one is not considered a part of the Islamic brotherhood if one ignores this obligation.

Hajj

The fifth pillar of Islam is to make a pilgrimage (Hajj) to Makkah, in Saudi Arabia, at least once in one’s lifetime. This pillar is obligatory for every Muslim, male or female, provided that he/she is physically and financially able to do so. Prerequisites for performing the Hajj are to be a Muslim, to be free, to be an adult or mature enough, to be of sound mind, and to have the ability to afford the journey and maintain one’s dependents back home for the duration. The reward for the Hajj is nothing less than Paradise.The Hajj is the ultimate form of worship, as it involves the spirit of all the other rituals and demands of the believer great sacrifice. On this unique occasion, nearly two million Muslims from all over the globe meet one another in a given year. Regardless of the season, pilgrims wear special clothes (Ihram) – two, very simple, unsewn white garments – which strips away all distinctions of wealth, status, class and culture; all stand together and equal before Allah (God).

The rites of Hajj, which go back to the time of Prophet Abraham who built the Ka’bah, are observed over five or six days, beginning on the eighth day of the last month of the year, named Dhul-Hijjah (pilgrimage). These rites include circumambulating the Ka’bah (Tawwaf), and going between the mountains of Safa and Marwah, as Hajjar (Abraham’s wife) did during her search for water for her son Isma’il. Then the pilgrims stand together on the wide plain of Arafah and join in prayers for God’s forgiveness, in what is often thought of as a preview of the Last Judgment. The pilgrims also cast stones at a stone pillar which represents Satan. The pilgrimage ends with a festival, called ‘Id al-Adha, which is celebrated with prayers, the sacrifice of an animal, and the exchange of greetings and gifts in Muslim communities everywhere.

The Greatest Ten Days of This World…

Image of the ka'aba in Makkah.
Image via Wikipedia

What is the significance of the first ten days of Dhul Hijja?

  1. Allah honored them when he swears an oath by them in the Qur’an as well, and swearing an oath by something is indicative of its importance and great benefit.Allah says 89-1/2 (By the dawn; by the 10 nights). Ibn Abbas, Ibn al-Zubayr, Mujahid and others of the earlier and later generations said that this refers to the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah. Ibn Katheer said: “This is the correct opinion.”
  2. Allah completed our religion in our of its days, the day of Arafa, as He revealed to the Prophet peace be upon him: 5-3 (This day have I perfected your religion for you, completed My favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion.) It was a Friday and the Prophet peace be upon him was standing on mount Arafa.
  3. These ten days are the completion of the forty days that Allah appointed for Musa peace be upon him, Allah says: 7-143 (We appointed for Musa thirty nights, and completed (the period) with ten (more): thus was completed the term (of communion) with his Lord, forty nights.) Ibn kathir may Allah have mercy on him said: â??The scholars of tafseer have different opinions on the meaning of these ten days. The majority are of the opinion that the thirty days are the month of Dhul Qiada and the ten are the first of Dhul Hijja; Mujahid, Masrouq, and Ibn Jarij said this, it was also related to Ibn Abbas and others.
  4. These ten days complete the months of Hajj 2-197 (For Hajj are the months well-known. If any one undertakes that duty therein, let there be no obscenity, nor wickedness, nor wrangling in the Hajj and whatever good ye do, (be sure) Allah knoweth it.)
  5. These ten days are the appointed days that Allah prescribed for us to celebrate His name for the blessings He has bestowed upon us. Allah says: 22-28 (That they may witness the benefits (provided) for them, and celebrate the name of Allah, through the Days Appointed, over the cattle which He has provided for them.) Ibn Rajab may Allah have mercy on him said: “The majority of scholars agree that the ‘appointed days’ are the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah”.
  6. Good deeds in these ten days are more beloved to Allah than in the rest of the year. The Prophet peace be upon him said: â??There are no days during which good deeds are more beloved to Allah than these days; meaning the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah. They inquired: Not even Jihad in the cause of Allah? He said: Not even Jihad in the cause of Allah, unless one goes out for Jihad sacrificing both his life and property and returning with neither.
  7. These days are the greatest days of the year. The Prophet peace be upon him said: “The greatest days of the World are (these) ten days”  Ibn Rajab may Allah have mercy on him said: “The apparent reason for the preference of the ten days of Dhul Hijja is that it all the main form of worship are performed in it; Prayer, Fasting, Zakah, and Hajj, and this does not happen in any other days”.
  8. These ten days are in the sacred months (The sacred months are Dhul Qiada, Dhul Hijja, Muharam, and Ragab.) 9-36 (The number of months in the sight of Allah is twelve (in a year), so ordained by Him the day He created the heavens and the earth; of them four are sacred: that is the straight usage. So wrong not yourselves therein)
  9. It has the day of Arafa in it. The Messenger of Allah peace be upon him said: “There is no day when Allah sets free more servants from Hell than the Day of Arafah. He draws near, then praises them to the angels, saying: What do these seek?”
  10. It has the day of Nahr. The Prophet peace be upon him said: “This is the greatest Day (i.e. 10th of Dhul Hijjah).”

What should we do in these days?

  1. Making remembrance of Allah, this is general, all kinds of dhikr, reading Quran, making salah and salam on the Prophet peace be upon him, Allah says: 22-28 (and celebrate the name of Allah, through the Days Appointed). There is also specific dhikr which should be done in these days, the Prophet peace be upon him said: “There is no day more honorable in Allah’s sight and no acts more beloved therein to Allah than those in these ten days. So say tahlil (There is no deity worthy of worship but Allah : La ilaha illAllah ), takbir (Allah is the greatest : Allahu Akbar) and tahmid (All praise is due to Allah : alhamdulillah) a lot [on those days].” Ibn Umar and Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with them) used to go out to the marketplaces during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah and recite out loud the takbeer and people would repeat it after them. It is commended to recite them out loud (women should do it silently) in marketplaces, at homes, roads, mosques and elsewhere.
  2. Fasting the first nine days (the tenth day is the day of eid, and you are not allow to fast this day) especially the day of Arafa (the ninth day). It was related by the wives of the Prophet may Allah be pleased with them that the Prophet peace be upon him used to fast all of these nine days. The Prophet peace be upon him said: â??Any slave of Allah who observes fast of a day in the cause of Allah, Allah would separate between him and the Fire a distance of seventy years on account of observing that day. The Prophet also said about fasting the day of Arafa: “I expect Allah to expiate the sins that were committed during the preceding year, and the sins that will be committed in the year after”.
  3. Praying at night (qiyam). Saeid ibn jubair may Allah have mercy on him used to say: “do not turn out your lights during the ten night”, and he would do acts of worship until he was barely able to do any more.
  4. Sacrificing and slaughter of an animal on the 10th day of Dhul Hijjah. Some scholars say this is Wajib, but the jimhoor (vast majority) say it is Sunnah Mu’akadah (important sunnah). When you sacrifice you say “bismillah Allahu akbar Allahuma 3any wa3an ahl baity” (“In the name of Allah – Allahu akbar – oh Allah this is for me and my family.”) Reputable scholars all agree that doing the sacrifice is better than giving its equivalent, because sacrifice is a worship in and of itself. A leader of the household can sacrifice for himself and for his dependants such as children, women and men like the sahabah and salaf used to do. One planning on sacrificing should not cut his hair or nails until sacrifice is complete. This only applies to the head of the house who is paying for the sacrifice and not his dependants. It is not requested that you do it by hand however that is the best, you may oversee the sacrifice as well or if unable give the power to someone to do this for you. The sacrifice should be done after ‘Eid prayer and you have until three days after, the Prophet peace be upon him ordered those who sacrificed before prayer to do it again.
  5. The Muslim must make sure to observe Eid prayer in its designated place, and attend the khutbah of the Eid. Makhnaf ibn Seleem, who is counted as a companion, said: â??Going out to the prayer of the day Fitr is equivalent to (doing) Umrah and going out to the prayer of the day of Addha is equivalent to (doing) Hajj.
  6. One should generally try to do more good deeds and try to stop the evil deeds. Here are some examples of deeds that you can do: The Prophet peace be upon him said: “Whoever walks to a prescribed prayer in congregation it is like (doing) one Hajj” he also said “He who observed the Isha in congregation it was a if he prayed until the middle of the night and he who observes Fajr in congregation it is as if has prayed the whole night” he also said “A person can attain with his good manners the levels of the one who fasts (everyday) and stands (all night praying)”.
  7. Performing Hajj and Umrah, which are the best of all observances. Its excellence is signified by many Prophetic traditions. The Prophet peace be upon him said: “Performing Umrah and following it with another expiates sins that are committed in between. And the perfect Hajj would be rewarded with nothing other than Jannah”. He also said: “Whoever performs hajj to this Ka’ba and does not approach his wife for sexual relations nor commit sins (while performing hajj), he will come out as sinless as a new-born child, (just delivered by his mother)”.

These ten days will start on Thursday or Friday insha Allah. May Allah help us to use these days the best way we can, and may He accept from us our deeds and forgive our shortcomings.

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The Greatest Ten Days of This World…

The first ten days are a great blessing from Allah to His servants, which is appreciated properly by the righteous persons. It is the Muslimâ??s duty to appreciate this blessing and seize the opportunity, by devoting these ten days to paying more attention to striving hard in worship. Among His blessings to His servants, Allah has given us many ways in which to do good and worship Him, so that the Muslim may be constantly active and consistent in his worship of his Lord. Among the good deeds which the Muslim should strive to do during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah are:

1- Fasting: It is Sunnah to fast on the ninth day of Dhul-Hijjah, because the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) urged us to do good deeds during this time, and fasting is one of the best of deeds. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to fast on the ninth of Dhul-Hijjah. Hunaydah Ibn Khalid quoted some of the wives of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) as saying: “The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to fast on the ninth of Dhul-Hijjah, on the day of `Ashurah, on three days of each month, and on the first two Mondays and Thursdays of each month.” (Reported by An-Nisa’i, 4/205)

2- Takbir: It is Sunnah to say takbir, tahmid, tahlil, and tasbih during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, and to say it loudly in the mosque, the home, the street and every place where it is permitted to remember Allah and mention His name out loud, as an act of worship and as a proclamation of the greatness of Allah, may He be exalted. Men should recite these phrases out loud, and women should recite them quietly. Allah says: (That they might witness things that are of benefit to them (i.e., reward of Hajj in the Hereafter, and also some worldly gain from trade, etc.), and mention the name of Allah on appointed days, over the beast of cattle that He has provided for them (for sacrifice)… ) (Al-Hajj 22:28) The majority of scholars agree that the “appointed days” are the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, because of the words of Ibn `Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him and his father): “The â??appointed daysâ?? are the first ten days (of Dhul-Hijjah).”

Takbir at this time is an aspect of the Sunnah that has been forgotten, especially during the early part of this period, so much so that one hardly ever hears takbir, except from a few people. This takbir should be pronounced loudly, in order to revive the Sunnah and as a reminder to the negligent. There is sound evidence that Ibn `Umar and Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with them both) used to go out in the marketplace during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, reciting takbir, and the people would recite it after him. The idea behind reminding the people to recite this is that each one should recite it individually, not in unison, as there is no basis in Shari`ah for doing this.

3- Performing Hajj and `Umrah: One of the best deeds that one can do during these ten days is to perform Hajj to the Sacred House of Allah. The one whom Allah helps to offer Hajj to His House and to perform all the rituals properly is included in the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him): “An accepted Hajj brings no less a reward than Paradise.”

4- Doing more good deeds in general: This is because good deeds are beloved by Allah and earn one a great reward. Whoever is not able to offer Hajj should occupy himself at this blessed time with acts of worship, offering Prayers, reading the Qurâ??an, remembering Allah, making supplications, giving in charity, showing dutifulness to parents, maintaining the ties of kinship, enjoining what is good and forbidding what is evil, and other good deeds and acts of worship.

5- Sacrifice: One of the good deeds that will bring a person closer to Allah during these ten days is offering a sacrifice.

6- Sincere repentance: One of the most important things to do during these ten days is to repent sincerely to Allah and to give up all kinds of disobedience and sin.

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