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A student of Islam

RAMADHAAN – A MONTH OF FASTING OR HUNGER??

By Mujlisul Ulama

Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:

“There are many people whose fasting is nothing but hunger.”  

Siyaam or Fasting is a wonderful exercise ordained by Allah Ta’ala for enhancing spirituality (roohaniyat) and improving moral character. However, the benefits of Siyaam are attainable only if the fast is observed with all its rules and regulations. Restricting the fast to abstention from the physical acts of eating and drinking is mere hunger bereft of the spirit which is so essential for the acquisition of the Spiritual and moral benefits of fasting.

Most people understand Siyaam to be an exercise of hunger — only abstention from lawful food. While they abstain from halaal food, they indulge in Haraam activities during the fast. The eyes, ears, tongue, mind and the limbs are excluded from the fasting whereas the physical fasting (abstention from food) has been designed to assist the process of moral fasting (abstention from evil, sin and transgression) which is imperative for development of spiritual fibre.

The physical fast in which the limbs of the body do not fast is the ‘hunger’ mentioned in the Hadith. The Saa-im (fasting person) gains no moral and spiritual benefit. He ‘fasts’ like an enclosed animal deprived of its food. A man whose eyes, tongue, etc. abstain from fasting is not dissimilar from a dog which does not gain morality and spirituality from the hunger imposed on it.

During fasting there is a greater need to abstain from haraam than from halaal. Gheebat (back-biting and gossiping) and the other evils of the tongue, the lustful and surreptitious glances of the eyes, the evil ruminations of the mind, and indulgence in haraam generally, totally ruin the fast. Sin and transgression denude it of its spirituality and reduce it to an act of hunger, not different from the hunger of animals which are deprived of food.

If after Ramadhaan, the Saa-im finds no improvement in his moral and spiritual conditions, but finds himself in the same immoral rut in which he was mired before Ramadhaan, then he should understand that his fasting was merely an act of hunger which was rejected and thrown out of the Divine Court of Acceptance (Maqbooliyat).

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IFTAAR IS AN ACT OF IBAADAT- IT IS NOT A MERRYMAKING PARTY

By Mujlisul Ulama

Complaining – with valid Shar’i justification – about the wasteful, haraam partying which is organized at the time of Iftaar in the Musjid in Tongaat, a Brother writes:

“In our masjid I found today iftaar to be like a massive party. Dastarkhans Were laid from half an hour earlier. Samoosas bajiyas haleem etc all laid. Azaan was suppose to be at 17h13. Azaan went at 17h15. people carried on eating while the azaan was being called out. Eventually jamaat started at 17h23..

Is this correct? What is the correct method to break the fast in the masjid.if the trustees wish to provide iftaar should kajoor just be provided with zam zam.

Seems very incorrect to me. And the delaying of the salaah to feast is very annoying to us who want to perform our salaah and go home to our family”

(End of letter)

This evil problem is not restricted to the Tongaat Musjid. It is a disease of epidemic proportions. It exists in most Musaajid. 

These types of wasteful parties in the Musjid to gratify the gluttonous lusts of people are not permissible. There is a Sunnah method of Iftaar which is Waajib to follow. The provision of dates and water is more than adequate. 

A very important act related to Saum (Fasting) isIftaar or to break the fast at its appropriate time. Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) emphasised the importance and the virtues of correct observance of Iftaar. Correct observance of Iftaar  means to observe it in the Sunnat way.

Although Iftaar is ostensibly a mundane act of eating some food, it is an ibaadat of much thawaab (reward) as well. However, Iftaar will be bereft of its spirituality and ibaadat dimension if it is not observed in the Masnoon manner.

THE MASNOON MANNER

It should be well understood that Iftaar is not feasting. It is not an act to discharge gluttonously or with impatience. It is a spiritually pleasurable act or should be so. Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said that the Saa-im (the fasting person) experiences two moments of happiness or pleasure. The one moment is when he makesIftaar and the other moment will be the occasion when he meets his Rabb (in the Aakhirah).

This pleasurable exercise should not be contaminated and ruined with greed and impatience when it is time to end the fast. The Masnoon method of breaking the fast is to eat some dates or to drink some water. It should not be transformed in a veritable feast with heavy foods as has become the norm in most places. Instead of the light Iftaar which was the practice of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and his Sahaabah, people have developed the greedy and impatient habit of stuffing their bellies with food of a variety of kinds while the Athaan is in progress. They are consequently deprived of the thawaab of responding to the Athaan. They suffer the loss of the Sunnat acts of responding to the Athaan and of the Masnoon light Iftaar which is not only spiritually beneficial but which is physically beneficial as well. The sudden avalanche of food which descends into the stomach which has become contracted as a result of the day-long abstention from food and water, leads to disorders in the body. The repercussion of such disorders can be severe and very harmful for even the physical health.

The excessive feasting at the time of Iftaar leads to spiritual lethargy, indigestion and delay in beginning of the Maghrib Salaat. To gain the best rewards of Iftaar, spiritual and physical, it is necessary to break the fast with only some dates or water. The Maghrib Salaat should then commence almost immediately after the Athaan, perhaps three or four minutes after the Athaan, not 10, 15 and even 20 minutes after the Athaan as has been observed in some places where people feast like gluttons. In this way, they detract from the benefits of the Saum. The best results of ibaadat can be acquired only if the proper Masnoon method is adopted.

RAMADHAAN – ITS SPECIAL BENEFITS

By Mujlisul Ulama

1) Barkat (blessings) in Rizq.
2) Increase in money.
3) Food consumed is recorded as ibaadat.
4) The reward of good deeds are multiplied manifold.
5) The Angels in the heaven and on earth supplicate for forgiveness for the fasting person.
6) The shayaateen are imprisoned. 7) The Portals of Rahmat are opened widely.
8) The Doors of Jannat are opened and the doors of Jahannam are closed.
9) Every night the release from Jahannam of 600,000 inmates is decreed.
10) Every Jumuah night the number released from Jahannam will equal the number released in  seven days.
11) On the last night of Ramadhaan the sins of all Muslims are forgiven.
12) Every day, Jannat is adorned and embellished for those who fast.
13) Duas are readily accepted.
14) The fasting person’s body is purified from all sins which he had committed.
15) The fasting person acquires the Pleasure of Allah.
16) Allah’s Tajalli (Special Presence) is on the First Sama’ (heaven) from Maghrib until Subh Saadiq.

Indeed only the most unfortunate person will be deprived of the wondrous benefits and rewards of the Blessed Month of Ramadhaan. This is the Month for considerable soul searching, abstention from futility and increase in ibaadat.

THE MAGNIFICENT BENEFITS OF SEHRI

By Jamiatul Ulama Gauteng

Hazrat Ibn Umar Radhiyallahu anhu narrated that Nabi Sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said,

“Indeed, Allah Ta’ala and His Angels send mercy upon those who eat Sehri.”

“Eat Sehri and strengthen yourself for fasting.”

“The difference in our fasting with that of the Ahl-e-Kitaab (Jews and Christians) lies in partaking of food at Sehri time, they do not.”

“Eat Sehri because in it lies great blessings.”

At times, when inviting any of his Sahaabah to join him for Sehri, Nabi Sallallahu alaihi wasallam used to say,“Come and partake of blessed food with me.”

“Even though there may be no food, then too one date should be eaten or a drink of water be taken.”

Allaamah Ibn Hajar Rahmatullahi alaih, in his commentary on Bukari Shareef, has mentioned various reasons for the blessedness of Sehri:

By partaking of Sehri, the Sunnah is followed.Through Sehri, we oppose the ways of the Ahl-e-Kitaab. They do not have Sehri.It provides strength for Ibaadat. Sehri is at a time in which Du’as are accepted.

 And many other benefits.

Time Management During Ramadan

To plan for Ramadan, we need to be clear regardung the goals (Maqasid) of Ramadan.

“Ramadan is a month whose beginning is mercy, whose middle is forgiveness and whose end is freedom from fire.” _Prophet Muhammad.

First you need to Clean-up your Time

Telephone/Mobile
Minimize your chat on the telephone. If you are used to chat with your friends on a regular basis, try to make it short. Share with them the importance of this month and tell them that you want to devote yourself for Ibadah in order to get the maximum reward in this month.

Computer & Internet
This is a personal experience and request. Spending a lot of time on the internet takes hours without notice. Try to minimize your internet timings by just checking emails/stuffs once a week.

Cooking
Try to cook something simple during Ramadan as this is a month of Ibadah and Qur’an, not the month of food.

You can prepare some items to freeze before Ramadan commences, it will save your time in Ramadan.

If you have to spend your time in the kitchen, keep a tape of Qur’an in the kitchen and listen to it while you are buzy in kitchen, or keep your tongue moist with Dhikr.

Shopping
Get all your shopping done before Ramadan. Make a list of the things/grocery/items, that is enough for one month and buy it all together.

Important: Try to do the Eid purchases NOW. The last ten days of Ramadaan when we have to be doing more Ibaadah and spend our time in doing good deeds, most of the muslims are busy in doing shopping for Eid.

Iftar “Parties”
Iftaar parties during Ramadan are getting very common now. Such “parties” are involve intermixing and other haraam factors. Indeed it’s a great reward to break someone’s fast but it should not be done in a haraam manner. One should give food to people who are needy and poor.

The Prophet (Sallalahu Alayhi wasallam) said: “Whoever gives food to a fasting person with which to break his fast, will have a reward equal to his, without it detracting in the slightest from the reward of the fasting person.” [Reported by al-Tirmidhi Saheeh al-Targheeb]

Sleeping
Cut less the time of sleep during this month. It’s a month of Ibaadah, doing good deeds. Who knows this could be our last ramadan. Reduce your sleeping hours. Its only one month and then you can get back to your normal routine.

THE IBADAH SCHEDULE

Fardh
Pray the Obligatory salaah (prayer) on time with Khushoo (great devotion). Get yourself ready as soon as the time of salaah comes in. Make duaa to Allaah to give you Khushoo & try to get rid of all the thoughts & waswaas (evil thoughts) that comes in the mind.

Sunnah & Nawafil
If you are already praying the 12 sunnah, continue them & add 4 sunnah before asar as The prophet (Sallalahu Alayhi wasallam) said: “May Allah have mercy on him who prays 4 rakaah before Asr”. [Tirmidhi]

Taraweeh
Try to pray the taraweeh in the masjid where the Imaam does long Qiyaam.

Tahajjud
Try to get up a little earlier to pray 2 rakaah before suhoor and make duaa. Its the best time for making duaa and a time of acceptance of duaa.

“And from (part of) the night, pray in it as additional (worship) for you: It is expected that your Lord will resurrect you to a Praised Station.” [Qur’an 17:79]

Qur’an
Ramadaan is the month of Qur’aan.Try to schedule it all the moments you have. If you are a student or working, keep a pocket size Qur’aan (only if you can carry it with adab) with you and read it whenever you get the time.

Read with reflection. Read slowly in a beautiful voice and reflect on its meanings (tadabbur).

Dua
Write down all the dua you want to make for yourself, your family or any duaa that you want to make for your deen or dunyah. Each day, focus on one duaa & keep on repeating it throughout the day and at times when the duaa is accepted.

Make dua to Allaah to give you Ikhlaas, khushoo, make dua that you catch laylat-ul-Qadr, make dua for the whole Ummah.

Also learn masnoon duas.

Dhikr
Select one Dhikr for a day and focus on it daily, reflecting on its meaning and thinking about its reward, while repeating it through out the day. Keep your tongue moist with dhikr.

Charity
Give as much charity as you can, as the reward gets more during the month of ramadan. Give food to the poor and needy people and help those in need.

Last 10 Days
Double and  triple the amount of Ibadah you are already doing (reading Qur’aan, nawafil, Dhikr, dua, tahajjud) in the last ten days of Ramadaan.

Sleep less and worship more.. pray as much as you can and make a lot of dua.

THE TABLIGH JAMAAT FACTIONS – WHO SHOULD I JOIN?

Cast in a dilemma by the factions of the Tabligh Jamaat, a Concerned Tablighi Brother writes: 

“Asalamualaikum.

From what I know, The Majilis advises people not to get involved in the current leadership conflict of the Tablighi Jamaat by neither supporting the Nizamuddin (Ml. Saad) group nor the Raiwind (Aalmi Shura) group. Rather, you advise us to work within the six points. 

However, what should we do when there is no option but to indirectly pick a side? What I mean by this is that there are two shab-e-guzaris going on in some countries (one by the Nizamuddin group and one by the Raiwind group). There is no third shab-e-guzari. Which shab-e-guzari should be partake in? 

Also when you want to go in Jamaat (e.g. 40 days), you have to either go through the Markaz of the Nizamuddin group or the Markaz of the Raiwind group in our local country. Through which group should we go in jamaat? Our local Ulama advise us to go through the Aalmi Shura group.   Jazakallah”  (End of letter)

OUR RESPONSE

We understand the dilemma which you and numerous others are experiencing regarding the fitnah prevailing in the Tabligh Jamaat. 

The best course is to abstain from participation in both factions. Do not side with any group. There is no Shar’i incumbency to join any one of the two mutually hostile factions. Both groups lack Ikhlaas, and without sincerity besides there being no barkatin the work, the Wrath of Allah Ta’ala settles on them. The haraam power struggle is not restricted to the leadership at the top. It has permeated right down to the rank and file juhala, hence the enormous enmity and hostility on the ground. 

The one faction is out to surpass the other one in numbers and external displays of ‘power’.  They have descended into the gutters of evil, nafsaaniyat  and  shaitaaniyat. They utilize vulgar language, real four-letter sewerage language common to drunken louts and hooligans, for each other. They have even adopted violence. They kick each other out of the Musaajid, and thereby prevent from the propagation of the Deen. 

Just imagine the villainy of the Raiwand faction here in South Africa. The junior molvis of Ta’leemuddeen Madrasah (Isipingo Beach) and Hilaal Musjid, having hijacked the one faction of the Tabligh Jamaat, have shamelessly, without a vestige of khauf for Allah Ta’ala, kicked out Mauana Tootla and banned him and his group from all the Musaajid under their so-called ‘control’. These shameless fussaaq molvis did not even attempt to utilize their brains to understand the notorious villainy which they are perpetrating in the name of the Deen. 

Maulana Tootla is over 80 years old. He is the most senior Tablighi in South Africa. He has devoted his life to the Tabligh Jamaat. He was appointed to the Shura for South Africa by the Hadhrat of the Tabligh Jamaat, Maulana Inaamul Hasan (Rahmatullah alayh). They banned him and his faction on the basis of the notorious LIE that they cause disturbances in the Musaajid. This is a blatant lie for which they will be hauled over hot coals on the Day of Qiyaamah. It is indeed an ugly LIE disgorged by molvis who portray themselves as people of Tasawwuf. They are fakes and bogus ‘sufis’. 

Just as the members of the one faction are ill-disposed and speak ill of the other faction, so does the other faction regarding its adversaries. But hitherto they have been indulging in their gheebat and buhtaan outside the Musaajid. None of them give bayaans on their mutual hooliganism. At least in the Musaajid they stick to the six point albeit with ghulu’

There is too much hatred and filth in the hearts of these chaps who project the image of pious muballigheen. They are devoid of Ikhlaas, hence their hearts are consumed by the fire of animosity, and they have daggers in their hearts for their adversaries. 

Brother, it is spiritually detrimental to join any of the factions at this stage. Stay at home and engage in ibaadat. Joining any one of the factions is like joining a street gang of hoodlums. When molvis who operate Darul Ulooms, such as the Isipingo fellows, have degenerated to the current corrupt level where they are justifying theirshaitaaniyat in the name of the Deen, then what do you expect of the rank and file juhala who think they are big buzroogs after having joined the Jamaat for a stint of stunts. 

If the leadership does not come to its senses, then the hatred and shaitaaniyat will only escalate and the Tabligh Jamaat will descend into the gutters to become another one of the 72 deviant sects mentioned in the Hadith. 

If a sufficient number of sincere Tablighis who are neutral withdraw from Tabligh Jamaat activity without siding with any faction, then perhaps the leaders who are currently under the spell of Iblees may come to their senses. May Allah Ta’ala guide them and keep us all steadfast on the Haqq.

THE CALL OF RAMADHAAN 

By Jamiatul Ulama Gauteng

Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said:

“An Angel calls out: ‘O One who desires good, come forth; O One who desires evil, hold back. And there are slaves of Allah freed from Hellfire.”

This Hadeeth is from Tirmizi Shareef. In this Hadeeth Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) has spoken of the virtue of Ramadhaan Shareef. A Farishta (Angel) calls out: “Yaa Baaghiyal Khair…” O One who desires good, come here; O One who desires evil, stop now.

General Amnesty

The third statement, “And there are slaves of Allah freed from Hellfire,” holds two possibilities. One possibility is that it is the call of the Farishta. In other words, the Farishta is saying, “There is general amnesty and freedom ordered by Allah Ta’ala on this night. O You! Make yourself eligible for this freedom.”

Look! When there is some royal celebration then prisoners attempt to gain freedom. So, now is the month of Ramadhaan. There is universal grace from Allah Ta’ala. Prisoners are being released. You, too, have many charges against you for committing crimes related to the Aakhirah. Therefore, join those prisoners who are petitioning for their release. Make an effort to gain your freedom.

Whatever I wish to say in this regard will follow, Insha-Allah. Firstly, however, understand why this Hadeeth has been selected for this bayaan.

The reason for selecting this Hadeeth is that in the previous Jumu’ah the Hadeeth: “Fasting is a shield,” was spoken about. The summary of that bayaan is that fasting is a shield for protecting oneself from sins.

Now the need is to know what should be done after leaving sins. In this regard the following is submitted.

Phases of Perfection

There are two phases to perfection. One is cleaning and the other is shining. For example, when pots are made then they are firstly cleaned out thoroughly, and then they are polished, etc.

Or consider the example of a sick person. When a physician treats a person he (the physician) removes all the putrid matter. Thereafter he prescribes such medication which strengthens the patient and brings vitality to his body.

Or consider the example of a home being furnished. Firstly the home is dusted and cleaned.

A person wears beautiful garments only after having a wash and bath to remove dirt from the body.

In short everything’s perfection is accomplished in two phases; cleaning and then shining. Generally the cleaning phase precedes the stage of shining as the shine will be poor without the cleaning process, like polishing a pot without firstly scrubbing and removing the dirt. It is obvious the shine will be imperfect.

Sometimes due to circumstances shining is done before the cleaning. For example, a house has to be furnished and there isn’t that amount of time to clean it inside out then the procedure adopted is to adorn it and as the time becomes available it is gradually cleaned out. This is due to exigency, otherwise the general rule is to clean out something first and then to adorn it.

The illustrious Soofiyah operate in the same manner; they firstly clean out the base character of the mureedeen (disciples) and then adorn their (the mureedeens’) character with praiseworthy qualities. This is exactly like the physicians who administer laxatives to purge the system of toxins and then they administer tonics. This was the methodology of the earlier Shuyookh (Masters of Tasawwuf).

The objective of this spiritual exercise of cleaning is to expunge base character. Spiritual exercise is this inculcation of humility, not merely eating less and sleeping less. In fact, this inculcation of humility is the minimum requirement and it is the pre-condition for being loved by Allah Ta’ala. When a person thinks highly of himself and he has no humility then he is disliked by Allah Ta’ala. Remember that only as long as you consider yourself to be ignoble you will be close to Allah.

This vanity is a vile curse. The Soofiyah Kiraam easily treat this sickness. For instance, they observe a mureed to be given to dressing up extravagantly. This mureed is instructed to sweep and clean the Masjid. Doing this despoils one’s looks and appearance. In this way after some time his vanity is broken.

Another example is that of a mureed who is arrogant. His moral training is to serve and attend to the Musallis. Place their shoes straight; make sure there is water available for them. His arrogance goes away.

This was the protocol of the Khaanqah of former days. Now this has been discontinued. Like this people will run away. Hardly anyone will then gain benefit. People of former times had more time available and they were strong-willed.

Even women would look for Allah Walas to get married to. There are episodes of ladies giving their daughters to Buzrugs in spite of the kings expressing their desire to get married to their daughters. One such episode is that of Shah Abdul Quddoos Saheb. His wife was the daughter of his Shaikh. People told his mother-in-law so much that, “You are getting your daughter married to a madman.” But she replied: “I prefer a madman.” Princes and noblemen sent proposals but she never marry her daughter to them.

Now people lack such determination, and lifespans are even short. In view of these exigencies the later Shuyookh operate by jointly imparting the cleansing and adorning processes. The end is realized in this way as well.

To summarize, everything requires cleaning and shining for perfection. The previous bayaan was centred on cleaning. This bayaan centres on adorning.

The perfection of Roza (fasting) is not merely by leaving sins. Positive actions are also desired when fasting. In the Hadeeth: “O One who seeks good, come forth; and O One who seeks evil, desist,” both do’s and don’ts are combined. We learn from this Hadeeth that cleaning and adorning the fast are desired as the first statement draws our attention to noble actions and the second statement tells us to stop sinning which is the cleaning process.

In the previous Jumu’ah this cleaning process was addressed to the degree of necessity. Now I will explain the process of adorning the fast.

The Question of No One Hearing the Call

Firstly, however, I wish to respond to a question from students pertaining to the Hadeeth: “O One who seeks good…” The question is: In this Hadeeth the call of the Angel is mentioned. It is furthermore mentioned that this call is sounded daily in Ramadhaan. But no one hears it. So how do we respond to it?

The answer to this question is that just as listening demands a response; similarly, by being notified a response is also required. Thus, we are obligated to practically respond to the call in view of Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) having informed us of the call. If our sense of hearing is not on that level where we can hear the call it is our own shortcoming. The call and the caller are not to be blamed.

In this regard I will relate an incident that took place in Shimlah. On one journey Moulana Anwar Shah Kashmiri travelled along with us. In a jalsah Moulana Anwar Shah delivered a lecture on the miraculous nature of the Qur’aan. The lecture was very intricate. Due to lack of comprehension the audience became disconsolate. People questioned the benefit of the bayaan.

After that when I gave a bayaan I said, “From Molvi Anwar Shah Saheb’s bayaan you can realise that the Ulama understand certain things which you cannot comprehend. This does not mean that the lecture was defective. It means and shows that you do not have the qualifications to understand certain things. The fault therefore lies with you; not with the bayaan.”

In the same way consider the call of the Angel. Not hearing it is our shortcoming; not the call’s or the caller’s shortcoming.

Secondly there is reason for the call not being heard; so that we can understand that besides this world there is another world where the inhabitants occupy another position and status.

Nevertheless, the heart perceives this call. It is for this reason that with the onset of Ramadhaanul Mubaarak almost everyone desires to engage in some noble deed. This is the effect of that call; the heart has heard it.

Adorning This Month in a Special Way

After the response to the question I now go on to explain the stage of adorning. In Ramadhaan this stage of adorning comes in two forms. The one way is a special way whilst the other is general.The Special Way  means to adorn oneself with special actions, and the general way means to adorn oneself with any good deed. Two Hadeeths are hereby cited which cover the two.

One Hadeeth is in Baihaqi. It states that the Qur’aan and Saum will intercede on behalf of a person. The Qur’aan will say: “I never allowed him to sleep. Therefore, accept my intercession and forgive him.”

This does not mean that we should stay awake the whole night. It means that in contrast to other nights the Qur’aan kept a person awake longer [as it was recited in Taraaweeh Salaat, in Tahajjud Salaat and out of Salaat].

It even appears in the Qur’aan:

“They used to sleep little at night.” (Surah Wath-thaariyaat, 17)

This explanation was related to the intercession of the Qur’aan.

Roza (fasting) will say: “I kept him away from eating and drinking during the day.”

In this manner the intercession of the Qur’aan and Roza will materialize. We learn from this that only fasting is not sufficient in Ramadhaan; read and listen to the Qur’aan as well. And the simple way to achieve this in this month is the Taraaweeh Salaat.

Despoiling the Taraaweeh

The problem is that very few people perform their Taraaweeh Salaat correctly. It is boasted that so-and-so Hafiz read so much paras (juz) in just one hour, whereas the words of the Qur’aan were not even recited properly. The Rukoo’ and Sujood were also despoiled.

If you recite the Qur’aan in this fashion

The image of Islam you ruin

Then we find the muqtadis irritated when some Hafiz wishes to recite the Qur’aan properly.

In short, when they return then instead of going home with reward they take along liability.

Some people who desire to recite the Qur’aan are troubled with the thought that they cannot master the art of reciting the Qur’aan. They falter in their recitation. Some even curtail their recitation due to this thought; thinking that such a Tilaawat is of no use. They should understand that in spite of reading with difficulty the reward is twofold.

They should not, however, think that they have superseded those who recite the Qur’aan with clarity. The one thawaab of the latter could be greater than the twofold reward of the former. Two silver coins are greater in number than one gold coin, but in value the one gold coin is greater.

Those who cannot recite the Qur’aan at all can derive thawaab by merely listening to the recitation of the Qur’aan. They are not deprived of thawaab, although they may not gain the amount of reward the reciter gets. Thus, the Qur’aan Majeed states:

“When the Qur’aan is recited then listen attentively and be quiet so that mercy descends upon you.” (Surah A’raaf, 204)

Just as the revelation of the Qur’aan is tied to this month, similarly, provision has been made for the recitation and listening of the Qur’aan by instructing Taraaweeh. In this way no one is deprived of thawaab.

This was the special way of adorning Ramadhaan.

The General Way of Adorning This Month

Regarding the general way of beautifying this month, among the virtues of this month is that discharging a nafl act is equal to a fardh and discharging a fardh act is equal to seventy fardh acts. The Hadeeth states:

“Whoever comes close (to Allah) with a nafl act in this month (of Ramadhaan) he is like one who performed a fardh act in other months.”

This covers all noble actions. This is therefore the general way to adorn this month. And these were the statements of Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) pertaining to adorning this month.

The Practice of Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) for This Month

Now look at the practice of Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) for this month. Hazrat Aishah (Radhiyallahu anha) says:

“When Ramadhaan would come then he would ready himself with determination and he would be more generous than a gusty wind.”

Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) would be very bighearted and eager to carry out Ibaadat during this month. With his words and his actions Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) showed both ways – the special and the general way of adorning the month of Ramadhaan. He practised himself and instructed others to do the same.

Conclusion

Now there are four classes of people in this regard. Some do not do good deeds and they do not leave their evil. Some leave their evil but do not carry out good deeds. Some do good deeds but also spend their time in futile and nonsensical things. Then there are those who combine abstention from evil and practice of good deeds.

If someone does not have full blown determination then at least he should leave out wrongdoings and carry out the waajib and emphasised good deeds. This is the cleaning and beautifying process of the month of Ramadhaan.

O Allah! Grant us all the taufeeq, Aameen.

[Modified from Nida-e-Ramzaan of Hazrat Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi Rahmatullahi Alaih]