Friday, June 7, 2024

Don't miss out on the 10 blessed days!

Don't miss out on the 10 blessed days

Ten Blessed Days: Don't Miss Out!

By His wisdom, Allah Ta'ala gave preference to some places and times over others. For Muslims, Friday is the best day of the week, Ramadan is the best month of the year, "Laylat al-Qadr" is the best night in Ramadan, the day of "Arafah" is the best day of the year. Likewise the first ten days of the month of "Dhul-Hijjah" are the blessed days for Muslims.
Allah Ta'ala says in the Quran what means: {By the daybreak, by the ten nights, by the even and the odd, by the passing night – is this oath strong enough for a rational person?} (Al-Fajr 89:1-5)
Early Muslim scholars differed on what is meant by the "ten nights". But most of them agreed that the ten nights refer to the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.
In another verse Allah Ta'ala says: {… to attain benefits and mention Allah Ta'ala's name, on specified days.} (Al-Hajj 22:28)
Most of the Quran commentators view that the specific days are the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.
What a great virtue attached to those days which pass unnoticed by many people nowadays.
On the merits of the first ten days, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: "There are no days in which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days." The people asked, "Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah?" He said: "Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah, except in the case of a man who went out to fight, giving himself and his wealth up for the cause, and came back with nothing." (Al-Bukhari)
In what follows are suggested ideas on how to make the best use of the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah:
Repent to Allah
Make a sincere repentance to Allah Ta'ala and promise Him that you will not do bad deeds again. This may be your last chance. You are not sure if you will live till next year.
Pray at the Mosque
Try to perform the five daily prayers in the mosque. If you have time after Fajr prayer, try to sit in the mosque, read a juz' (part) of the Quran, make duaa, or recite some Adhkar (remembrance of Allah). Then offer two rakahs before you go home. If you do so, you are reviving a tradition that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) used to do, a tradition which these days has been neglected by many Muslims.
Observe Fasting in the First Nine Days
Abu Sa`id al-Khudri said: I heard the Prophet saying, "Indeed, anyone who fasts for one day for Allah's Pleasure, Allah will keep his face away from the (Hell) fire for (a distance covered by a journey of) seventy years." (Muslim)
Do not observe fasting on the tenth day because it is an `Eid day and it is prohibited to fast that day.
Good deeds are rewarded abundantly in these first ten days; and as fasting is a good deed, it is recommended to fast these nine days.
Do not Miss Fasting the Day of Arafah
On the day of Arafah, non-pilgrims are highly recommended to maintain fasting. It is reported that the Prophet was asked about fasting on the day of Arafah, whereupon he said: "It expiates the sins of the preceding year and the coming year." (Muslim)
He also said: "There is no day in which Allah frees a greater number of His slaves from the Hellfire than the Day of Arafah." (Muslim)
Make a Lot of Supplications (duaa) on the Day of Arafah
The Prophet said: "The best supplication is that of the Day of `Arafah, and the best thing that I and other Prophets before me said, is: La ilaha illa allahu wahdahu la sharika lah, lahu al-mulku wa lahu al-hamdu wa huwa `ala kulli shai'in qadeer (There is no Allah Ta'ala but Allah alone. He has no partners. To Him belong the sovereignty and all praise. He has power over all things.) (Al-Tirmidhi)
Try to Do Something New this Year
If you used to recite a part of the Quran last year, try to finish reading the whole Quran this year. Try to pick some verses everyday and check the books of Tafsir (exegesis of the Quran) to reflect on their meaning in order to derive lessons from them in your daily life.
Maintain your Family Relations
Visit your relatives even for a few minutes. If they live far away, give them a call. Do not forget your parents. Be kind to them, visit them, and attend to their needs. Some new Muslims think that after their conversion, they should cut off their family members. Allah Ta'ala orders Muslims to be kind to their parents even if they are non-Muslims. This occasion might be a good opportunity to talk about Islam to your non-Muslim parents.
Give to Charity
Make it a daily habit to help the needy. Look for humanitarian organizations in your neighborhood and help them in any way you can.
Don't Miss Offering at Least Two Rakahs of "Tahajjud" at Night
Offer many extra prayers, as much as you can. Allah Ta'ala promised a great reward for offering extra acts of worship. The Prophet said: "Allah said, 'I will declare war against him who shows hostility to a pious worshipper of Mine. And the most beloved things with which My slave comes nearer to Me, is what I have enjoined upon him; and My slave keeps on coming closer to Me through performing Nawafil (praying or doing extra deeds besides what is obligatory) till I love him, so I become his sense of hearing with which he hears, and his sense of sight with which he sees, and his hand with which he grips, and his leg with which he walks; and if he asks Me, I will give him, and if he asks My protection (refuge), I will protect him; (i.e. give him My refuge) and I do not hesitate to do anything as I hesitate to take the soul of the believer, for he hates death, and I hate to disappoint him." (Al-Bukhari)
Reciting the Takbir
It is an act of Sunnah to say "Takbir" (Allah is the Greatest) in the first ten days.
The "Takbir" should be pronounced as much as possible in the mosque, at home, in the streets, etc. It is reported that: "Ibn `Umar and Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with them) used to go out in the marketplace during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, reciting Takbir, and the people would recite Takbir when they heard them." (Al-Bukhari)
There are many forms of Takbir, but the most common one is: Allahu akbaru, Allahu akbaru, Allahu akbaru, la illaha illa Allah, Allahu akbaru, Allahu akbar, wa lillahi al-Hamd.
In another version of the Hadith mentioned above on the merits of the ten days, there is this addition: "… so increase saying Tahlil (saying la-illah illa Allah), Takbir (saying Allahu akbar), and Tahmid (saying Al-hamdullilah)" (Ahmad) Therefore, these kinds of "dhikr" should be recited day and night.
The Best Good Deed in These Days is to Offer Hajj
Go to Hajj, if you are physically and financially able to perform it. If not, try to offer a sacrifice (qurbani)  if you have the means. By doing this you are commemorating the story of sacrifice of both prophet Ibrahim and his son Ismail (peace be upon them). The poor and the needy have a share in the sacrifice and feeding them is one of best deeds that can be done on the day of `Eid.
I pray to Allah to accept our good deeds in these days of Dhul-Hijjah and throughout the year. When our good deeds are accepted by Allah Ta'ala, we will be admitted to Paradise, by His Mercy.

Tuesday, June 4, 2024

Winter Tips

9 Hot Tips For Winter Souls

By Umme Ammarah

(For our readers in the Northern Hemisphere save this article for later in the year when winter creeps in!)

It is said winter is a time when people suffer from so called winter blues. But it is interesting to see how many people welcome winter because they see it in a different light. Instead of being down and in active you can be pro active revive your energy in ibadah (worship), increase your good deeds, take care of your obligations and earn the pleasure of Allah all at the same time. Here are some tips to benefit from winter:


Winter is the best season for the believer because Allah Ta'ala makes worship easy for him. This is because in winter, the believer can fast during the day with ease without suffering from hunger and thirst. The days are short and cold, and he therefore doesn't feel the hardship of fasting…

It is reported The Beloved Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said: "Fasting in the winter is the easy prize'

'Umar bin al-Khattab(RA) said: "Winter is the prize of the worshippers."

2. QADHA (missed)FASTS

We all know that making up the days of missed fasting is fardh (compulsory) on every adult Muslim man and woman and not doing so is a sin. So if we have missed a fast for a valid reason (travel, sickness etc) we need to "catch-up".

Thus, we should hasten to fast the number of days we missed and what better opportunity than this?  How much easier could it get? The days are short and the weather is cool, so you don't really get thirsty or even feel hungry.


The Noble Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) is reported to have said: "Winter is the best season for the believer. Its nights are long for him to pray in, and its days are short for him to fast in." [Hadith-Majma' az-Zawa'id' (3/203)]

As for praying at night in the winter due to its long nights, one can have his share of sleep and then get up to pray afterwards and recite all that he usually recites of the Qur'an while he has enjoyed enough rest.


The Noble Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said: "Whoever feeds a hungry believer will be fed by Allah on the Day of Judgement from the fruits of Paradise, and whoever quenches his thirst will have his thirst quenched from the Sealed Nectar, and whoever clothes him will be clothed from the green silk of Paradise."

Try and involve our own family in these activities. Buy some blankets, gloves and warm hats and take your kids along to distribute it to the needy. There is so much good we can do if we just put ourselves forward.


We can prepare some nutritious soups for our family and also hand out to the poor in and around our neighbourhood. I'm sure a hot cup of soup would definitely be appreciated on a cold winter day.

 The Noble Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said: "Worship the Most Compassionate, Feed people and spread salaam (greetings) and you will safely enter paradise."  (Hadith –TirmidhiI)


Allah says in the  Noble Qur'aan :"Oh you who believe save yourselves and families from the fire." (Quran 66:6) .So plan such activities that will bring us closer to Allah. Be innovative and have fun within the confinements of Shariah.

As it is cold, we can enjoy quality time indoors with our family which we often find difficult because we are "busy"! Plan and do such activities that will bond the family and bring us closer to Allaah. Let the kids be involved in what you plan to do for winter. Sit around the warm fire and read some stories of the Sahabah (RA) to the children and introduce them to the true heroes of the world. Mums and dads… use these long nights to re-kindle that flame of love.


Allah says in verse of Quraan: "verily, in the Remembrance of Allah hearts find peace and satisfaction." (Qur'aan 13:28)

Use this time indoors to learn duas (prayers) from the sunnah, in recitation of Qur'aan, make the Zikr of Allah etc..The Noble Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said; "everyday Allah showers kindness and charity on his slaves and no kindness is better than inspiration of His remembrance that Allah grants to his slaves.(Hadith-tabarani)

Choose a good Islaamic book and increase your Islaamic knowledge. A Believers thirst for knowledge is never quenched. He continues to hear and learn until he enters Paradise Hadith-Tirmidhi. It was narrated that Ibn Mas'ud (RA)said: "Welcome to winter! Blessings descend in it, its nights are long to pray in, and its days are short to fast in." This is why Mu'adh(RA) wept on his deathbed and said: "I weep because I will miss the thirst I felt when I fasted, praying at night during the winter, and sitting knee to knee with the scholars during the gatherings of knowledge.""



 Actually, if you think about it, winter is a big blessing from among the innumerable, uncountable blessings of Allah. He is honoring us by the bounty of His Giving, His Gracious Blessing and His Great Favour, so that we may be able to pray at night, fast during the day and worship Him


The Noble Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him)said: "Hell complained to its Lord, saying: "Parts of me have consumed the other parts." So, He allowed it two breaths of exhalation: one in winter and one in summer. As for its breath in winter, that is the bitter cold, and its breath in the summer is the extreme heat."

Among the virtues of winter is that it reminds one of the extreme cold of Hell and pushes one to seek refuge from it and to do such noble actions that will ensure one is protected from Jahannam (Hell)!

May Allaah Ta'ala, Most High enable us all to make best use of our winters. Ameen.