Virtues of the Day of Arafah

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Praise be to Allah The Exalted.

The Day of Arafat is like a small gathering to a great rehearsal. It is one of the greatest mercies of Allah that He gives every pilgrim the chance to rehearse the Day of Judgement, the day of the great gathering.

The Ihram clothing removes all differences of wealth, importance or social status and then everybody is just by himself, just the way we will be buried one day.

“And every one of them will come to Him alone (without any helper, or protector or defender).” (Maryam 19:95)

Pilgrims stream to the place of gathering as all humans will do on the day of resurrection

“Then unto their Lord they all shall be gathered.” (Al-An’am 6:38)

Here, we face our Lord in silent prayer and we ask Him for forgiveness for all our sins. It is a situation where people present their lives, their good deeds and their bad deeds to their Lord. Many realize that they showed up unprepared, empty handed.

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Nothing will be placed in the balance on the day of Resurrection which will weigh more heavily than good manner and attitude.”

“I created not the jinn and mankind except to worship Me alone.” (adh-Dhariyat 51:56)

On Arafat Day, Allah gives us the chance to experience how it will be like on the Day of Judgement when we have to give account for our lives.

“And warn them O’ Muhammad of the day of grief and regrets, when the case has been decided, while now they are in a state of carelessness, and they believe not!” (Maryam 19:39)

Arafat shows us the reality of life. This worldly life is just temporary and it is not proper for any human being to be forgetful about Paradise and Hellfire. In order to save us from the hellfire, we need to accept and live by the teachings of the Glorious Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ).

Islam does not only bring the message of the Hereafter; it is intended to guide us in this life. At the end of the Day of Arafat all pilgrims leave in one direction, going towards Muzdallifa. On the day of Judgment this will be different. Some will go to Paradise, but the fast majority will go to hellfire. Arafat is the reminder to choose our destination, before it is too late.

“And we created not the heaven and the earth and all that is between them without purpose! That is the consideration of those who disbelieve! Then woe to those who disbelieve from the fire!

Shall We treat those who believe and do righteous good deeds as those who associate partners in worship with Allah and commit crimes on earth?

Or shall we treat the pious as the disbelievers?” (Sad 38:27-28)

Because the day of Arafat serves as a yearly reminder to us about the final day of Judgement, it is important to know what exactly are the virtues of this day. Why is it so important?

1. It is the day on which the religion was perfected and Allah’s Favor was completed

In Al-Saheehayn it was reported from ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) that a Jewish man said to him, “O Ameer al-Mu’mineen, there is an ayah in your Book which you recite; if it had come to us Jews, we would have taken that day as an ‘Eid (festival).” ‘Umar said, “Which aayah?” He said: This day I have perfected your religion for you, completed My favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion.” [al-Ma’idah 5:3 – interpretation of the meaning]. ‘Umar said, “We know on which day and in which place that was revealed to the Prophet (ﷺ). It was when he was standing in ‘Arafah on a Friday.”

2. It is a day of Eid for the people who are in that place

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: Yawm ‘Arafaah (the day of ‘Arafah),Yawm al-Nahr (the Day of Sacrifice) and Ayyaam al-Tashreeq (the 3 days following Yawm al-Nahr) are Eid (festival) for us, the people of Islam. These are days of eating and drinking.” This was narrated by the authors of al-Sunan. It was reported that ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab said: “It – i.e., the ayahThis day I have perfected…’ was revealed on a Friday, the Day of ‘Arafah, both of which – praise be to Allah – are Eids for us.” 

3. It is a day by which Allah swore an oath

The Almighty cannot swear by anything except that which is mighty. Yawm ‘Arafah is the “witnessed day” mentioned in the ayah (interpretation of the meaning):

“By the witnessing day [Friday] and by the witnessed day [the Day of ‘Arafah].”  [al-Burooj 85:3].

It was reported from Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “The promised day is the Day of Resurrection, the witnessed day is the Day of ‘Arafah, and the witnessing day is Friday.” (Narrated by al-Tirmidhi and classed as sahih by al-Albaani)

It is the “odd” [i.e., odd-numbered, Witr] by which Allah swore in the ayah (interpretation of the meaning):

And by the even and the odd” [al-Fajr 89:3]. Ibn ‘Abbas said: “The even is the Day of al-Adha [i.e., 10thDhoo’l-Hijjah] and the odd is the Day of ‘Arafah [i.e., 9th Dhoo’l-Hijjah].” This is also the view of ‘Ikrimah and al-Dahhaak.

4. Fasting on this day is an expiation for two years

It was reported from Abu Qutadah (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah (ﷺ) was asked about fasting on the Day of ‘Arafaah. He said, “It expiates for the sins of the previous year and of the coming year.” (Narrated by Muslim)

This (fasting) is mustahabb (recommended) for those who are not on Hajj. In the case of the one who is on Hajj, it is not Sunnah for him to fast on the Day of ‘Arafah, because the Prophet (ﷺ) did not fast on this day in ‘Arafah. It was narrated that he forbade fasting on the Day of ‘Arafah in ‘Arafah.

5. It is the day on which Allah took the covenant from the progeny of Adam

It was reported that Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: the Messenger of Allaah (ﷺ) said: “Allah took the covenant from the loins of Adam in Na’man, i.e., ‘Arafah. He brought forth from his loins all his offspring and spread them before Him, then He addressed them, and said: ‘Am I not your Lord? They said, ‘Yes, we testify,’ let you should say on the Day of Resurrection: ‘Verily, we have been unaware of this.’ Or lest you should say: ‘It was only our fathers aforetime who took others as partners in worship along with Allah, and we were (merely their) descendants after them; will You then destroy us because of the deeds of men who practised Al-Baatil (i.e., plolytheism and committing crimes and sins, invoking and worshipping others besides Allaah)?’ [al-A’raf 7:172-173 – interpretation of the meaning].” Narrated by Ahmad and classed as saheeh by al-Albaani. And there is no greater day than this and no greater covenant than this.

6. It is the day of forgiveness of sins, freedom from the Fire and pride in the people who are there:

In Sahih Muslim it was narrated from ‘A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “There is no day on which Allah frees more people from the Fire than the Day of ‘Arafah. He comes close and expresses His pride to the angels, saying, ‘What do these people want?’”

 It was reported from Ibn ‘Umar that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “Allah expresses His pride to His angels at the time of ‘Ishaa’ on the Day of ‘Arafah, about the people of ‘Arafah. He says, ‘Look at My slaves who have come unkempt and dusty.’” Narrated by Ahmad and classed as sahih by al-Albaani.

 And Allah knows best.

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Superiority of the First Ten Days of Dhul-Hijjah

superiority of 10 days

Just like the last ten nights of the holy month of Ramadan are the best ten nights out of the year, these first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah (the final month of the Islamic Calendar in which Hajj is performed) are the best days of the year and the most beloved to Allah as they combine acts of worship in a way unlike any other time.

The excellence of these ten days has been mentioned in the Qur’an and the Sunnah.

1. Allah says in the Qur’an:

“By the dawn and by the ten nights … “  [Al-Fajr 89:1-2]

Ibn Kathir said that “the ten nights” referred to here are the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, and this opinion was also held by Ibn Abbas, Ibn az-Zubair, Mujahid and others.

2. The Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, said:

“There are no deeds as excellent as those done in these ten days.” They (the companions listening) said, “Not even Jihad?” He, peace be upon him, said, “No, not even Jihad except a man who goes forth endangering his life and wealth and does not return with anything.”  [Recorded by Imam al-Bukhari]

3. Allah says:

” … and remember the name of Allah in the appointed days.” [Al-Baqarah 2:203]

Ibn Abbas and Ibn Kathir said this means in the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.

4. The Messenger of Allah, upon whom be peace, said:

“There are no other days that are as great as these in the sight of Allah, the Most Sublime. Nor are there any deeds more beloved to Allah than those that are done in these ten days. So increase in tahlil (to say la illaha illallah), takbir (to say allahu akbar), and tahmid (to say alhamdulillah).” [ Reported by at-Tabarani in al-Mu’jum al-Kabir]

5. With regards to the noble companion Sa’id bin Jubair, when the days of Dhul-Hijjah began, he would strive to increase in good actions with great intensity until he was unable to increase any more. [Reported by ad-Darimi]

6. Ibn Hajar says in Fath al-Bari:

“The most apparent reason for the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah being distinguished in excellence is due to the assembly of the greatest acts of worship in this period, i.e. salat (prayers), siyam (fasting), sadaqah (charity) and the Hajj (pilgrimage). In no other periods do these great deeds combine.”

**Note: It is recommended to fast on the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah, especially on the 9th which is the blessed day of Arafat. The 10th of Dhul Hijjah is the day of Eid al-Adha and it is prohibited to fast on that day.

Fasting on the day of Arafat expiates the sins of two years

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The first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah have been classified as the best 10 days of the year, and the Day of ‘Arafat, on which Allah perfected His religion has been classified as the best day of the year according to some scholars.

Imaam Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 728H) said: “The most excellent day of the week is the day of Jumuah (Friday), by the agreement of the Scholars. And the most excellent day of the year is the day of an-Nahr. Some of them said that it is the day of Arafat. However, the first opinion is the correct one, since it is related in the Sunan collections that the Prophet ﷺ said: “The most excellent days with Allah is the day of an-Nahr, then the day of al-Qarr (the day that the Muslims reside in Mina).”  [(Saheeh) by Shaikh al-Albanee in Irwa al-Ghaleel (no: 2018). Related by Abu Dawood no: 1765].” [Majmoo al-Fatawa vol: 25, pp. 288]

The ninth day of Dhul-Hijjah (the 12th and final month of the Islamic calendar) is the Day of ‘Arafat, since it is on this day that millions of pilgrims set out for the plains of Arafat after sunrise to attend the Khutba of Arafat and perform their Dhuhr and Asr salat combined as was the Sunnah of Rasool Allah (ﷺ). Thereafter they engage in supplication to Allah from Dhuhr to Maghrib, seeking forgiveness of their Lord before setting off for Muzdhalifah.

On this day of Arafat, Muslims all over the world who do not witness the annual Hajj should spend the day in fasting as it is mustahabb (highly recommended), in preparation for the three-day festivity following ‘Eid ul-Adha (the celebration marking the end of the Hajj commemorating the Prophet Ibrahim’s (willingness of sacrifice). When asked about the fasting on the day of ‘Arafah, the Prophet Muhammad said,

“It expiates the sins (Minor) of the past year and the coming year.”  [Muslim (no. 1162)]

Abu Hafsah, may Allah be pleased with him, reported that the Prophet (ﷺ) said:

“Fasting on the Day of ‘Arafah absolves the sins for two years: the previous year and the coming year, and fasting on ‘Ashura, (the tenth day of Muharram) atones for the sins of previous years.”  [Reported by all except al-Bukhari and at-Tirmidhi]

But, this does not mean that one can continue to commit sin in the upcoming year, rather it portrays the virtue of fasting on the day of ‘Arafat, and the blessings to be obtained therein.

In another saying the Prophet’s wife Hafsah, may Allah be pleased with her, said:

“Four things the Messenger of Allah never neglected: Observing fast on the day of ‘Ashura,‘Arafat, three days every month, and offering fajr sunnah prayers early in the morning.”  [Muslim]

These statements are proof that fasting on the ninth of Dhul-Hijjah, the day before ‘Eid ul-Adha was a lifelong practice of the Prophet (ﷺ) as his wife reported.

There are some reports that fasting is prohibited on the Day of ‘Arafah. However, it must be understood that this refers to a person performing the Hajj. If a person is on the Hajj, there is no fast for him or her on the day of ‘Arafah. That is undoubtedly a blessing for him because of the hardships of the pilgrimage. In a saying reported by Umm al-Fadl, may Allah be pleased with her, she said:

“The companions doubted whether the Prophet (ﷺ) was fasting on ‘Arafah or not. She decided to prove to them that he was not, so she said, ‘I sent to him milk, which he drank while he was delivering the khutbah (sermon) on ‘Arafah.'” [Recorded by al-Bukhari]

Prohibiting the pilgrims from fasting on these days is a great mercy for them, for fasting will exert undue hardship on the person performing the Hajj, while they are primarily concerned with their pilgrimage. Above all, the pilgrim would not be fasting anyway because he is travelling.

The fact that not all of the Muslims are required to go to Hajj every year is a mercy and source of ease from Allah to His servants. He has made Hajj binding once in a lifetime and not binding every year. However, it is a communal obligation occurring every year. This is different from fasting, which is an individually binding obligation on every Muslim, every year.

Because the month of Dhul-Hijjah is a season of worship, it bring along blessings, benefits and opportunities to correct one’s faith and make up for shortcoming. This special opportunity involves a kind of worship, which brings the slave closer to his Lord. And Allah bestows His blessings and Favours on whom He wills. The fortunate person is he who makes good use of these special months, days, and hours, while worshiping Allah. He is most likely to be touched by the blessings of Allah. Rewards of good deeds are multiplied in these days. [Ibn Rajab, al-Lataa’if pp. 8]

For non-pilgrims, it should be remembered that not only should you fast on this day, but make sure to ask Allah for all of your prayers. The Prophet (ﷺ) said: “The best dua is the dua of Arafat.” (Tirmidhi)

Respect, honor, esteem: Good manners which the Sahabah observed with Allah’s Messenger

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{ O you who believe! Make not (a decision) in advance before Allah and His Messenger, and have Taqwa of Allah. Verily, Allah is Hearing, Knowing. }  Al-Hujuraat 49:1

In these Ayat, Allah the Exalted teaches His faithful servants the good manners they should observe with the Messenger, which are: respect, honor, and esteem. Allah the Exalted and Most Honored said,

{ O you who believe! Make not (a decision) in advance before Allah and His Messenger, }  meaning, do not rush in making decisions before him, rather, follow his lead in all matters. `Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn `Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, commented:

{ Make not (a decision) in advance before Allah and His Messenger, } “Do not say anything that contradicts the Qur’an and Sunnah.” Qatadah commented, “We were told that some people used to say, `Revelation should be sent down about such and such matters,’ and, ‘such and such practices should be rendered allowed.’ Allah the Exalted disliked this attitude.”

Allah said, { and have Taqwa of Allah. } meaning, ‘in what He has ordered you;’ { Verily, Allah is Hearing, } ‘your statements,’ { Knowing. } ‘your intentions.’

{ O you who believe! Raise not your voices above the voice of the Prophet, nor speak aloud to him in talk as you speak aloud to one another, lest your deeds should be thwarted while you perceive not. }  Al-Hujuraat 49:2

Allah said, { O you who believe! Raise not your voices above the voice of the Prophet, }

This contains another kind of favorable behavior. Allah the Exalted is teaching the believers that they should not raise their voices above the voice of the Prophet. It was stated that this Ayah was revealed about Abu Bakr and `Umar.

Al-Bukhari recorded that Ibn Abi Mulaykah said, “The two righteous ones, Abu Bakr and `Umar, almost earned destruction when they raised their voices before the Prophet who was receiving the delegation of Bani Tamim. One of them recommended Al-Aqra` bin Habis the member of the Banu Mujashi` while the other recommended another man. Nafi` (a subnarrator) said: “I don’t remember his name.” Abu Bakr said to `Umar, `You only wanted to contradict me,’ while `Umar said, `I did not intend to contradict you.’ Their voices then became loud, thereupon Allah the Exalted sent down this Ayah,

{ O you who believe! Raise not your voices above the voice of the Prophet, nor speak aloud to him in talk as you speak aloud to one another, lest your deeds should be thwarted while you perceive not. }

`Abdullah bin Az-Zubayr said, “After that, `Umar’s voice was so low that the Messenger of Allah had to ask him to repeat what he said so that he could understand what he was saying to him.”

`Abdullah bin Az-Zubayr did not mention the same regarding his father, Abu Bakr, may Allah be pleased with him. Muslim did not collect this Hadith.

In another narration collected by Al-Bukhari, he said that a delegation from the tribe of Banu Tamim came to the Prophet and that Abu Bakr recommended Al-Qa`qa` bin Ma`bad to be appointed as their leader, while `Umar recommended Al-Aqra` bin Habis. Muslim did not collect this narration.

Al-Bukhari recorded that Anas bin Malik said, “The Prophet missed Thabit bin Qays and a man said, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! I will find out about his news.’ That man went to Thabit and found him sitting at home with his head lowered and asked him, ‘What is the matter?’ Thabit said, ‘An evil matter!’ And he said that he used to raise his voice above the voice of the Prophet . He feared that his good deeds would be useless and he would be among the people of the Fire. The man went back to the Prophet and conveyed Thabit’s statement and returned to Thabit with a wonderfully good news.

The Prophet said, “Go back to him and tell him this news; you are not among the people of the Fire. Rather, you are among the dwellers of Paradise.” Al-Bukhari collected this Hadith with this wording.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Anas bin Malik said, “When this Ayah was revealed, { O you who believe! Raise not your voices above the voice of the Prophet }, until, { while you perceive not }, Thabit bin Qays bin Ash-Shammas, whose voice was loud, said, ‘I was the one who raised his voice above the voice of Allah’s Messenger . I am among the dwellers of the Fire. My good deeds have been done in vain.’

He remained in his house feeling distressed, and the Messenger of Allah noticed his absence. So some men went to Thabit and said to him, ‘The Prophet noticed your absence. What is the matter with you?’ Thabit said, ‘I used to raise my voice above the voice of the Prophet and speak loudly in front of him. My deeds have been rendered useless and I am among the people of the Fire.’ They went to the Prophet and told him what Thabit said and the Prophet said, ‘Nay, he is among the dwellers of Paradise.'”

Anas commented, “We used to see Thabit walk among us knowing that he was (to be) among the dwellers of Paradise. During the battle of Yamamah, our forces suffered retreat. Suddenly, Thabit bin Qays bin Shammas came, having put on his Hanut and shrouds, and said, ‘The worst habit is the one you acquire from your enemy and do not set a bad example for your companions.’ And he went on fighting until he was martyred, may Allah be pleased with him.”

Allah then prohibited speaking to the Prophet in a loud voice, just as one speaks loudly to another in a way that offends him. Instead, they were required to speak to him in terms of respect, honor and calmness. This is why Allah the Exalted and Most Honored said, { nor speak aloud to him in talk as you speak aloud to one another, } just as He said in another Ayah,

{ Make not the calling of the Messenger among you as your calling one of another. } An-Nur 24:63

Allah’s statement, { lest your deeds should be thwarted while you perceive not. } means, ‘We ordered you to refrain from raising your voices to the Prophet, so that he will not get angry with you, because in doing so, you will also anger Allah.’ The good deeds of he who caused the Prophet’s anger will become useless without him even knowing.

In the Sahih, there is a Hadith that states,

“Verily, a man might utter a word that pleases Allah the Exalted, even though he does not recognize the significance of his word, and on its account Paradise is written for him. Verily, a man might utter a word carelessly that angers Allah the Exalted, and on its account, he is cast in the Fire farther than the distance between the heavens and earth.”

Allah then ordains lowering one’s voice before the Messenger and encourages, directs and recommends this better behavior.

{ Verily, those who lower their voices in the presence of Allah’s Messenger, they are the ones whose hearts Allah has tested for Taqwa. For them is forgiveness and a great reward. }  Al-Hujuraat 49:3

{ Verily, those who lower their voices in the presence of Allah’s Messenger, they are the ones whose hearts Allah has tested for Taqwa. } whose hearts have been purified by Allah and made as a residence and dwelling for the Taqwa, { For them is forgiveness and a great reward. }

Imam Ahmad recorded in the Book of Az-Zuhd that Mujahid said, “Someone wrote to `Umar, ‘O Leader of the faithful! Who is better, a man who does not feel the desire to commit a sin and does not commit it, or a man who feels desire to commit a sin, but does not commit it’ `Umar replied, `He who feels desire to commit a sin, but does not commit it, { they are the ones whose hearts Allah has tested for Taqwa. For them is forgiveness and a great reward. }‘”

[Tafsir ibn Kathir, Surat al-Hujuraat (49), verses 1-3]

Fasting on the Day of Ashura

[throughbitsandpcs] Ashura article

‘Ashura’ commemorates the day that Allah saved the Children of Israel from Pharaoh.

Fasting on Muharram 10, known as the Day of ‘Ashura’, expiates for the sins of the past year. When the Prophet (ﷺ) arrived in Madinah, he found that the Jews there fasted on Muharram 10 and asked them the reason for their fasting on this day. They said: “This is a blessed day. On this day, Allah saved the Children of Israel from their enemy [in Egypt] and so Prophet Musa (Moses) fasted on this day giving thanks to Allah.”

The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “We are closer to Musa than you are.”

He fasted on that day and commanded Muslims to fast on this day. (Al-Bukhari)

The following year, Allah commanded the Muslims to fast the month of Ramadan, and the fasting of ‘Ashura’ became optional. It is also reported that the Prophet (ﷺ) intended to fast on the ninth and tenth.

Ibn ‘Abbas reported: The Messenger of Allah fasted on the day of ‘Ashura’ and ordered the people to fast on it. The people said, “O Messenger of Allah, it is a day that the Jews and Christians honor.” The Prophet said, “When the following year comes, Allah willing, we shall fast on the ninth.” The death of the Prophet came before the following year. (Muslim and Abu Dawud)

Thus, according to scholars, you may choose to fast ‘Ashura’ on three days (ninth, tenth, and eleventh); two days (ninth and tenth); or one day only (the tenth). The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Fasting the day of ‘Ashura’ (is of great merits), I hope that Allah will accept it as an expiation for (the sins committed in) the previous year.” (Muslim)

But this expiation of minor sins comes only if you avoid major sins. It is a big mistake to rely on fasting a single day to “wipe your slate clean.” If you neglect your daily Prayers or the fast of Ramadan, or if you backbite, lie, commit adultery or other major sins, fasting on ‘Ashura’ alone will not atone for your sins.

The great scholar Ibn Al-Qayyim Al-Jawziyya (b. 691 AH/1292 CE) wrote: This misguided person does not know that fasting in Ramadan and praying five times a day are much more important than fasting on the Day of Arafah and the Day of ‘Ashura’, and that they expiate for the sins between one Ramadan and the next, or between one Friday and the next, so long as one avoids major sins. But they cannot expiate for minor sins unless one also avoids major sins; when the two things are put together, they have the strength to expiate for minor sins. Among those deceived people may be one who thinks that his good deeds are more than his sins, because he does not pay attention to his bad deeds or check on his sins, but if he does a good deed he remembers it and relies on it.


Note: You may hear of some customs associated with ‘Ashura’ such as cooking and eating certain foods on that day, wearing kohl or henna, or even merrymaking. Others consider this a day of mourning and wailing in honor of the Prophet’s grandson Al-Husayn, who was killed in battle on that day. The scholar Ibn Taymiyah (b. 661 AH/1263 CE) stated that all of these are bid’ahs (reprehensible innovations) that should be avoided.

Take advantage of this opportunity to bring yourself closer to Allah on ‘Ashura’ by fasting and praying for forgiveness.

The vastness of Allah’s forgiveness

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On the authority of Anas (RadiyAllahu ‘anhu) who said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) say,

“Allah the Almighty has said: ‘O Son of Adam, as long as you invoke Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O Son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and you then asked forgiveness from Me, I would forgive you. O Son of Adam, were you to come to Me with sins nearly as great as the Earth, and were you then to face Me, ascribing no partner to Me, I would bring you forgiveness nearly as great as it [too].’” 

It was related by at-Tirmidhi, who said that it was a hasan hadeeth.

Brief Commentary

  • It was from the habits of the scholars that collected 40 hadith to collect only 40, but Imam Al-Nawawi increased it by two. The 41st to remind us to adhere to the 40 before, and this as a form of seeking forgiveness
  • We see from this hadith how easy Allah made seeking His forgiveness
  • The main themes of the hadith are:
    • The extent of Allah’s forgiveness
    • How to have hope in Allah and not despair of His mercy
  • The hadith started with “O son of Adam” to remind us that we are all sinners and that our father Adam sought forgiveness after his sin, so we should emulate him in that
  • Du’a is essential in seeking forgiveness as it is the essence of worship/servitude
  • Servitude of two pillars:
    • Recognition of our weakness/need for Allah
    • Recognition that only Allah can see to our need
  • Our du’aa is weak/lacking when:
    • We have little knowledge of Allah, so don’t feel that He can see into our needs hence,
    • We feel independent and don’t need any help, thus have arrogance which is the opposite of servitude
  • From the important factors that help us in having our du’aas accepted is the presence of the heart, and hope is what supports us in achieving that
  • The prophet (ﷺ) said, “Ask Allah with certainty of Him answering your du’aa, and know that Allah does not accept the du’aa from a heedless distracted heart.” [Reported by Tirmidhi]
  • The prophet (ﷺ) said, “It (du’aa) is accepted from you so long as you are not haste, saying I asked but I was not answered.” [Reported by Bukhari & Muslim]
  • It is from the mercy of Allah to give a delayed response, as that makes the servant turn closer to Allah
  • This hadith is also a form of having hope in Allah, so we end the study of the 40 ahadith by having hope in Allah
  • Ibn Rajab said about hope, “It is comfort in waiting for what is beloved to a person”
  • Ibn Al-Qayyim said, “Hope is important for the traveller to Allah, and if the worshipper leaves from it for a moment then he will be ruined, or nearly ruined. The Muslim revolves around a sin which he hopes to have forgiven, a defect which he hopes to rectify, a righteous action which he hopes is accepted, steadfastness which he hopes to gain and hold on to, and closeness to Allah which he hopes to reach. Therefore hope is from the strongest things that aid a person in travelling to his Lord and staying firm on the religion”
  • If a believer find himself not having hope in any of the matters above, then he will live a miserable life, and it is due to this that people suffer from depression and its like
  • When du’a is coupled with hope, then it is an open door for forgiveness and acceptance. If either of these is present, then du’a will not work and it will be like a wish
  • Ibn Al-Qayyim said, “A heart in its travel to Allah glorified may He be is like a bird, love is its head, and hope and fear are its wings”
  • We seek forgiveness:
    • To remove the worldly ill-effects of sins
    • To remove the ill-effects of sins in the hereafter
    • As a form of gratitude
    • For our shortcomings in worship
    • For our shortcomings in being grateful to Allah
  • The last part of the hadith explains the 3rd contributor to forgiveness, which is pure tawheed (monotheism)
  • Tawheed is not just an academic thing, but it is very spiritual, and that is the meaning here
  • Ibn Rajab said, “Whoever sets tawheed in his heart, it will remove everything other than Allah from his heart with regards to love, veneration, respect, reverence, fear, hope, and reliance. And then all of his sins will be burned, even if they were like the foam of the sea, and it may change them into good deeds”

Benefits and Action points:

  • Always finish off anything you do whether act of worship or not, with seeking forgiveness in Allah
  • Praise Allah for the vastness of His forgiveness that he promised us
  • When making du’aa, recognize your weakness in front of Allah and your need for Him, along with His ability to see to your needs
  • Always believe in Allah’s answering of your du’aa and never give up on that, no matter how long you have been making du’aa for
  • Have hope in Allah in everything you do/want
  • Realize that tawheed is not just an academic thing, and it is something that you must feel in your heart

(Imam Nawawi’s Forty Hadith, Hadith 42)

Fate of a pilgrim who dies while performing Hajj

good-deed-before-death

If someone dies while performing an act of obedience then we hope that he will enter paradise, as the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) said: “When Allah wants good for a person, He uses him.”

The companions (may Allah be pleased with them) asked: “How does He use him, O Prophet of Allah?”

The Prophet (ﷺ) replied: “He enables him to perform a good deed before his death.” [Ahmad].

The Prophet (ﷺ) also said: “Actions are judged according to their end [i.e. if one performs actions of the dwellers of paradise and then dies, then it is hoped that he will enter paradise, and if one performs the actions of the inmates of Hell and dies, then is subject to entering Hellfire].”

Whoever dies while performing Hajj or when praying or while performing any other good deed, then we hope that he will be among the people of paradise.

However, the belief of Ahlus-Sunnah Wal-Jamaa’ah is that they do not confirm that a specific person is among the people of paradise except the ten companions whom the Prophet (ﷺ) informed that they will enter paradise, and Thabit Ibn Qays Ibn Shammaas, and ‘Ukkaashah Ibn Mihsan, and others whom the Prophet (ﷺ) mentioned by name that they are among the people of paradise. As regards other believers, we cannot be definitely sure that they are among the people of paradise.

Imaam At-Tahaawi (may Allah have mercy upon him) said: ‘It is hoped that Allah will forgive the righteous believers and make them enter paradise with His mercy, but we cannot say with absolute certainty that they are among the people of paradise.’

And Allah Knows best. ❤

The Virtues of the Day of Arafat

Praise be to Allah The Exalted.

The Day of Arafat is like a small gathering to a great rehearsal. It is one of the greatest mercies of Allah that He gives every pilgrim the chance to rehearse the Day of Judgement, the day of the great gathering.

The Ihram clothing removes all differences of wealth, importance or social status and then everybody is just by himself, just the way we will be buried one day.

“And every one of them will come to Him alone (without any helper, or protector or defender).” (Maryam 19:95)

Pilgrims stream to the place of gathering as all humans will do on the day of resurrection

“Then unto their Lord they all shall be gathered.” (Al-An’am 6:38)

Here, we face our Lord in silent prayer and we ask Him for forgiveness for all our sins. It is a situation where people present their lives, their good deeds and their bad deeds to their Lord. Many realize that they showed up unprepared, empty handed.

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Nothing will be placed in the balance on the day of Resurrection which will weigh more heavily than good manner and attitude.”

“I created not the jinn and mankind except to worship Me alone.” (adh-Dhariyat 51:56)

On Arafat Day, Allah gives us the chance to experience how it will be like on the Day of Judgement when we have to give account for our lives.

“And warn them O’ Muhammad of the day of grief and regrets, when the case has been decided, while now they are in a state of carelessness, and they believe not!” (Maryam 19:39)

Arafat shows us the reality of life. This worldly life is just temporary and it is not proper for any human being to be forgetful about Paradise and Hellfire. In order to save us from the hellfire, we need to accept and live by the teachings of the Glorious Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ).

Islam does not only bring the message of the Hereafter; it is intended to guide us in this life. At the end of the Day of Arafat all pilgrims leave in one direction, going towards Muzdallifa. On the day of Judgment this will be different. Some will go to Paradise, but the fast majority will go to hellfire. Arafat is the reminder to choose our destination, before it is too late.

“And we created not the heaven and the earth and all that is between them without purpose! That is the consideration of those who disbelieve! Then woe to those who disbelieve from the fire!

Shall We treat those who believe and do righteous good deeds as those who associate partners in worship with Allah and commit crimes on earth?

Or shall we treat the pious as the disbelievers?” (Sad 38:27-28)

Because the day of Arafat serves as a yearly reminder to us about the final day of Judgement, it is important to know what exactly are the virtues of this day. Why is it so important?

1. It is the day on which the religion was perfected and Allah’s Favor was completed

In Al-Saheehayn it was reported from ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) that a Jewish man said to him, “O Ameer al-Mu’mineen, there is an ayah in your Book which you recite; if it had come to us Jews, we would have taken that day as an ‘Eid (festival).” ‘Umar said, “Which aayah?” He said: This day I have perfected your religion for you, completed My favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion.” [al-Ma’idah 5:3 – interpretation of the meaning]. ‘Umar said, “We know on which day and in which place that was revealed to the Prophet (ﷺ). It was when he was standing in ‘Arafah on a Friday.”

2. It is a day of Eid for the people who are in that place

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: Yawm ‘Arafaah (the day of ‘Arafah),Yawm al-Nahr (the Day of Sacrifice) and Ayyaam al-Tashreeq (the 3 days following Yawm al-Nahr) are Eid (festival) for us, the people of Islam. These are days of eating and drinking.” This was narrated by the authors of al-Sunan. It was reported that ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab said: “It – i.e., the ayahThis day I have perfected…’ was revealed on a Friday, the Day of ‘Arafah, both of which – praise be to Allah – are Eids for us.” 

3. It is a day by which Allah swore an oath

The Almighty cannot swear by anything except that which is mighty. Yawm ‘Arafah is the “witnessed day” mentioned in the ayah (interpretation of the meaning):

“By the witnessing day [Friday] and by the witnessed day [the Day of ‘Arafah].”  [al-Burooj 85:3].

It was reported from Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “The promised day is the Day of Resurrection, the witnessed day is the Day of ‘Arafah, and the witnessing day is Friday.” (Narrated by al-Tirmidhi and classed as sahih by al-Albaani)

It is the “odd” [i.e., odd-numbered, Witr] by which Allah swore in the ayah (interpretation of the meaning):

And by the even and the odd” [al-Fajr 89:3]. Ibn ‘Abbas said: “The even is the Day of al-Adha [i.e., 10thDhoo’l-Hijjah] and the odd is the Day of ‘Arafah [i.e., 9th Dhoo’l-Hijjah].” This is also the view of ‘Ikrimah and al-Dahhaak.

4. Fasting on this day is an expiation for two years

It was reported from Abu Qutadah (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah (ﷺ) was asked about fasting on the Day of ‘Arafaah. He said, “It expiates for the sins of the previous year and of the coming year.” (Narrated by Muslim)

This (fasting) is mustahabb (recommended) for those who are not on Hajj. In the case of the one who is on Hajj, it is not Sunnah for him to fast on the Day of ‘Arafah, because the Prophet (ﷺ) did not fast on this day in ‘Arafah. It was narrated that he forbade fasting on the Day of ‘Arafah in ‘Arafah.

5. It is the day on which Allah took the covenant from the progeny of Adam

It was reported that Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: the Messenger of Allaah (ﷺ) said: “Allah took the covenant from the loins of Adam in Na’man, i.e., ‘Arafah. He brought forth from his loins all his offspring and spread them before Him, then He addressed them, and said: ‘Am I not your Lord? They said, ‘Yes, we testify,’ let you should say on the Day of Resurrection: ‘Verily, we have been unaware of this.’ Or lest you should say: ‘It was only our fathers aforetime who took others as partners in worship along with Allah, and we were (merely their) descendants after them; will You then destroy us because of the deeds of men who practised Al-Baatil (i.e., plolytheism and committing crimes and sins, invoking and worshipping others besides Allaah)?’ [al-A’raf 7:172-173 – interpretation of the meaning].” Narrated by Ahmad and classed as saheeh by al-Albaani. And there is no greater day than this and no greater covenant than this.

6. It is the day of forgiveness of sins, freedom from the Fire and pride in the people who are there:

In Sahih Muslim it was narrated from ‘A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “There is no day on which Allah frees more people from the Fire than the Day of ‘Arafah. He comes close and expresses His pride to the angels, saying, ‘What do these people want?’”

 It was reported from Ibn ‘Umar that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “Allah expresses His pride to His angels at the time of ‘Ishaa’ on the Day of ‘Arafah, about the people of ‘Arafah. He says, ‘Look at My slaves who have come unkempt and dusty.’” Narrated by Ahmad and classed as sahih by al-Albaani.

 And Allah knows best.