Significance of the month of Muharram

There is great importance and significance given to the month of Muharram as it is one of the four sacred months in Islam.

Allah ﷻ says:

“ إِنَّ عِدَّةَ الشُّهُورِ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ اثْنَا عَشَرَ شَهْرًا فِي كِتَابِ اللَّهِ يَوْمَ خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ مِنْهَا أَرْبَعَةٌ حُرُمٌ”

“Surely, the number of months according to Allah is twelve (as written) in the Book of Allah on the day He created the heavens and the Earth, of which there are Four Sacred Months.”

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ، قَالَ: قَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: «أَفْضَلُ الصِّيَامِ، بَعْدَ رَمَضَانَ، شَهْرُ اللهِ الْمُحَرَّمُ،

It has been reported from Abu Hurairah (رضي الله عنه) he said, Rasulullah ﷺ said, “The best fast after Ramadan is the month of Allah, Muharram. (Reported in Sahih Muslim)

This hadith could possibly indicate to the fact the best month to fast completely after the month of Ramadan is the Month of Muharram.

In another narration:

، قَالَ: «إِنْ كُنْتَ صَائِمًا بَعْدَ شَهْرِ رَمَضَانَ فَصُمُ المُحَرَّمَ، فَإِنَّهُ شَهْرُ اللَّهِ، فِيهِ يَوْمٌ تَابَ فِيهِ عَلَى قَوْمٍ، وَيَتُوبُ فِيهِ عَلَى قَوْمٍ آخَرِينَ»: «هَذَا حَدِيثٌ حَسَنٌ غَرِيبٌ»

Rasulullah ﷺ said” If you will fast after the month of Ramadan, then fast Al-Muharram, for indeed it is Allah’s month in which there is a day that Allah accepted the repentance of a group of people, and in which He accepts the repentance of other people.”

Fasting on the tenth of Muharram holds great merit and virtue as it has been stated in the tradition below:

قَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: « وَصِيَامُ يَوْمِ عَاشُورَاءَ، أَحْتَسِبُ عَلَى اللهِ أَنْ يُكَفِّرَ السَّنَةَ الَّتِي قَبْلَهُ»

Rasulullah ﷺ said: “And the Fasting on the day of Aashura, I hope from Allah that fasting on the day of ‘Aashura may atone for the sins of the preceding year.” (Reported in Sahih Muslim)

However, one should bear in mind that it is preferable that one joins the tenth day either with the day before(ninth) or the day after(eleventh).

فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: «فَإِذَا كَانَ الْعَامُ الْمُقْبِلُ إِنْ شَاءَ اللهُ صُمْنَا الْيَوْمَ التَّاسِعَ» قَالَ: فَلَمْ يَأْتِ الْعَامُ الْمُقْبِلُ، حَتَّى تُوُفِّيَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ

It has been mentioned in the hadith, Rasulullah ﷺ said, “When the following year comes, if Allah wills, we will fast on the ninth day. Ibn Abbas رضي الله عنه said, the following year never came until Rasulullah ﷺ passed away.

In general circumstances, any act of ‘ibadah performed in any of the four sacred months are more rewardable in comparison to the other months.

Hafidh ibn Rajab رحمه الله has mentioned that the best part of the month of Muharram is its first ten days.

Abu ‘Uthman Al-Nahdi has mentioned, that they used to honour and give importance to three types of ten days:

  • Last ten days of Ramadan
  • First ten days of Dhul-Hijjah
  • First ten days of Muharram.

Considering the various evidence, it can be understood that any form of worship performed in the month of Muharram is considerably more rewardable. Therefore, one should honor and give due importance to the month of Muharram by engaging oneself in different forms of worship and avoid getting involved in such practices which are not in conformity to the dictates of Shariah. Other sects (like Shias, etc.) give importance to the day of Aashura for other reasons. One’s Ibaadat in the month of Muharram must not be increased due to these unestablished practices rather due to the virtues mentioned in the Ahadith.

Madāris Benefit the Nation

The madrasah not only brings our children benefits in relation to the hereafter, it also provides them goodness in this world. Parents too, receive worldly gain: a child that spent its time well at madrasah will become a means of comfort and joy for its parents. The madrasah is a boon for the country as well because it produces good citizens, regardless of whether it operates in an Islamic country or a secular state. At madrasah, children are taught to respect the rights of all people and are warned against involvement in drugs, alcohol, theft, vandalism and all types of antisocial behaviour. It contributes towards a socially cohesive society and is a great blessing for humanity as a whole.

Prophet Muhammad sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam came into this world as a mercy and all his teachings are full of mercy. What is taught in the madrasah is what the Prophet Muhammad sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam taught. His life, his character, his dealings – they all form the basis of what our children learn. Every child who attends a madrasah becomes familiar with these Prophetic teachings and is equipped to go on to embody them and serve humanity and work for its betterment.

Salah with Jamaat

“There are many who perform their Salah regularly but are not very particular about Salah with Jamaat. Shariah emphasizes on performing salah with Jamaat.

Hadhrat Abdullah ibn Umar (RA) narrates that he heard the Prophet ﷺ saying, “A Salah with Jamaat is 27 times superior to Salah performed individually.”

Hadhrat Anas bin Malik (RA) narrates that he heard Rasulullah ﷺ, “A person who in all sincerity is constant with Salah in jamaat for 40 days without missing the first Takbeer receives two rewards: one for deliverance from hell and the other for freedom from Nifaq (hypocrisy).”

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One of the wisdoms behind creating grief and happiness and making us experience both is that after spending time in this world, a person will depart for the Hereafter where there is Jannah and Jahannam. The characteristic of Jannah is eternal comfort and happiness, whilst the characteristic of Jahannam is eternal hardship and grief. This world, however, bears the characteristics of both Jannah and Jahannam. The grief and happiness experienced here is, in effect, a sample of the eternal and unimaginable grief or happiness to come in the Hereafter. When one is struck with any condition that brings grief, for example illness and poverty, one should understand that this is merely a sample of the grief of the Hereafter. Allāh ta‘ālā puts His servants in this grief as a reminder that if they are unable to bear the limited and temporary grief of this world, then how will they bear the everlasting grief of Jahannam? Similarly, Allāh ta‘ālā gives one the taste of happiness, so that one can reflect and acknowledge that if temporary bounties of this world can bring such happiness, then what about the happiness acquired through the inconceivable bounties of Jannah. They serve as reminders for us to try our utmost to safeguard ourselves from the everlasting grief and strive to acquire the everlasting happiness of the Hereafter.