بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم

اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِيْن،وَالصَّلاۃ وَالسَّلامُ عَلَی النَّبِیِّ الْکَرِيم وَعَلیٰ آله وَاَصْحَابه اَجْمَعِيْن۔

AFTER THE BLESSED MONTH OF RAMADAM

Within few days, the moments of this blessed month will pass away. Then we would remember for a whole year the showering of Allah’s special mercy upon those who used to eat pre-dawn meal Sehri), the mouth’s odour of fasting person being beloved in the sight of Allah, the acceptance of supplications at the time of breaking the fast, the forgiveness of sins and elevation of ranks in the consequences of observing fasts and offering Nafl salah at night, the multiplication of reward for each good deed, the special connection of the Holy Qur’an with this sacred month, the freedom of countless slaves of Allah from the fire of Hell.

But we don’t know for how many brothers and sisters among us, this Ramadan would be the last Rmadan of their life. And, in the next year, they would neither be able to pray Taraweeh and Tahajjud nor be able to keep fasts. The fasts concerning which Allah says in Hadeeth-e-Qudsi (a hadeeth in which prophet (PBUH) quotes the words of Allah), Fasting is for me and I will reward for it. In the words of another Hadeeth, I, myself, am the reward for the fasting.

Among the signs of acceptance of good deeds which scholars of Islam wrote down, is to be helped to do good deeds one after another. The other sign is not turning towards disobedience after obedience. An important sign is consistency in good deeds.

 The Prophet (PBUH) said, “The acts most pleasing to Allah are those which are done consistently, even if they are little in number, (Bukhari & Muslim).

Ayesha (RA) was asked about the actions of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) if he (PBUH) performed some actions exclusively on some particular days. She said: No, he performed his actions regularly, who of you has the strength as much as the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) had? (Muslim)

Abdullah ibn Amr bin al-’Aas (RA) reported, the messenger of Allah (PBUH) said to me “Don’t be like so and so. He used to get up at night for optional prayer but abandon it later.” (Bukhari & Muslim).

Even after the passing of Ramadan, we should be consistent in performing good deeds and must abstain from doing bad deeds. Such a conduct is a guarantee of our success both in this world and the Hereafter.

Here I am writing some good deeds to be performed along with others.

Paying Sadqat-ul-Fitr:

The word Fitr literally means breaking a fast or not observing it. But in Shari’ah terminology it is defined as the charity paid to express thank and happiness of breaking the fast and the completion of the month of Ramadan. It also serves as a recompense for the mistakes committed during the month of Ramadan. As Abdullah ibn Abbas (RA) said “The Mesenger of Allah (PBU) enjoined Sadaqat-ul-Fitr on the one who observes fasts to purify him from any indecent act or speech and for the purpose of providing food for the needy.”, (Ibne Majah, Hadeeth No. 1872).

Sadaqat-ul-Fitr is prescribed to be paid on the day of Eid-ul-Fitr to purify those who observe fasts form the sins and make their fasts perfect and flawless. Moreover, in the houses of those who are rich different kinds of dishes are prepared and they put on good clothes whereas the poor remain hungry as they are observing fasts. That is why Allah obliged upon those who are well off to give this charity to the poor and the needy, so that they also can enjoy good clothes and food.

Numerous Ahadeeth confirmed the compulsory nature of Sadaqat-ul-Fitr. To be concise only three Ahadeeth are being given.

Ibn Umar (RA) said, “the messenger of Allah (PBUH) enjoined Sadaqat-ul-Fitr upon young and old male and female free and slave.”, (Agreed upon).

The exact time for paying Sadaqat-ul-Fitr is before going to salah on the day of Fitr. However, it can be paid any time in the last phase of Ramadan. Ibn Umar (RA) narrated that the messenger of Allah (PBUH) ordered paying Sadaqat-ul-Fitr before going to salah on the day of Fitr. [Bukhari - Hadeeth No. 1509, Muslim - Hadith Mo. 2285).

It is narrated by Nafi’ (RA) that Ibne Umar (RA) used to give Sadaqat-ul-Fitr for every young and old person. He even used to give on behalf of my children. People used to give Sadaqat-ul-Fitr even a day or two before Eid, (Bukhari).

Basically Sadqat-ul-Fitr is paid in kind through grains, but keeping in view the need of the hour all the schools of thought are of the view to give Sadaqat-ul-Fitr in cash also.

Offering Salat-ul-Fitr:

It is forbidden to observe fast on the day of Eid-ui-Fitr and it is Wajib (compulsory) to offer two Rak’ahs salah consisting as an expression of thank to Allah. The time of Salat-ui-Eid commences after the rising of the sun. Delivering the sermon by Imam (a person who leads congregation) following salah is sunnah. And after the start of sermon, it is compulsory to listen to it. Those who talk during sermon or leave it do a wrong act. Taking bath, using miswak, putting on the best available clothes, applying perfume, taking a sweet breakfast like dates or any other sweet dish before Salat-ul-Fitr, paying Sadaqat-ul-Fitr before leaving for Salat, using separate routes to and from the praying ground and saying Takbeer are among the acts of Sunnah on this day.

Six fasts of shawwal:

Abu Ayyub al-Ansari (RA) reported that the messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who observed the fasts of Ramadan and also kept six fasts in the month of Shawwal, it is as if he has observed fast for the whole year.”, (Muslim, Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi and Ibne Majah).

So the Prophet (PBUH) gave the glad tidings to his ummah that who keeps six fasts of Sahwwal after observing the fasts of Ramadan would be worthy of reward given to those who observe fasts for the whole year. According to the generous rule of Allah the Exalted the reward of one good deed is multiplied by ten times. As Allah says in the Qur’an “Whoever brings a good deed shall have ten times the like thereof.”, [Surah al-Anaam:160]. In this way, one who observes fasts of the month of Ramadan will be given the reward of observing fasts of ten months. Moreover, when he observes six fasts of Sahwwal he will get the reward of keeping the fasts of sixty days. Through this way of counting he will get the reward of observing fasts of the whole year.

These six fasts could be observed after Eid in the month of Shawwal continuously or intermittently.

If someone started observing these fasts but after one or two fasts he left them due to any reason it is not necessary for him to make up for the remaining fasts.

Being punctual in offering obligatory prayers:

After the faith, salah is the most essential element of Islam, which is obligatory upon every Muslim who reached the age of puberty and has the sound state of mind.  It is a matter of grave concern that a large number of Muslims are not concerned about offering this obligation. Though in the blessed month of Ramadan they take care of offering salah, but in days other than Ramadan they become idle and inconsistent in offering it. However both the Quran and Hadeeth laid great stress on the importance of salah. May Allah make us punctual and consistent in offering salah, both in Ramadan and other than the days of Ramadan.

Allah the exalted says “Indeed, prayer has been decreed upon the believers a decree of specified times.”, (Quran 4:103).

In the day and night, 17 Rak’ahs are obligatory for every Muslim, male or female. 2 Rak’ahs in Fajr, 4 Rak’ahs in Zuhr, 4 Rak’ahs in Asr, 3 Rak’ahs in Maghrib and 4 Rak’ahs in Isha.

Abu Hurairah (RA) reported, “The messenger of Allah (PBUH) said “The first of man’s deeds for which he will be called to account on the day of Resurrection will be salah. If it is found to be perfect, he will be safe and successful, but if it is incomplete he will be unfortunate and a loser.”, (Tirmidhi, Ibne Majah, Nasai, Abu Dawood, Musnad Ahmad).

Umar Ibn al-Khattab (RA) would write to his governors during his caliphate and say: “The most important of your affairs in my views is salah. Whoever offers salah regularly has protected his faith, but whoever neglects it, he is bound to be more negligent in other issues of faith. (Mu’atta Malik)

Being consistent in offering Salat-ul-Witr:

The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Allah has given you a prayer, which is better for you than the red camels, it is Witr which Allah has enjoined on you between Isha and Fajr salah.”, (Ibne Majah, Tirmidhi and Abu Dawood).

In every famous book of traditions, the Prophet (PBUH) ordered his Ummah to offer salat-ul-witr. And such an order has a compulsory nature. Therefore, we should be consistent in offering salat-ul-witr between Isha and the beginning of the dawn (Subh Sadiq).

In the light of Ahadeeth, Muslim Ummah has agreed on making up for the missed salat-ul-witr, in the next day any time after the rising of the sun.

Consistency in offering Sunane Mu’akkadah:

(the prayers other than the obligatory ones, but performed by the prophet persistently)

Umm Habibah (RA), the wife of the Apostle of Allah (PBUH) is reported to be saying: “if any Muslim servant of Allah prays for the sake of Allah twelve rak’ahs of (sunan) over and above the obligatory once , Allah will built for him a house in the paradise.”, (Muslim).

In Tirmidhi, this Haeeth has  been clearly stated: “whosoever prays twelve rakaat in day and night, a house will be built for him in the paradise: four rak’ahs before Zuhr, two rak’ahs after it, two rak’ahs after Maghrib, two rak’ahs after Isha and two rak’ahs before Fajr in morning salah”

Apart from these Sunane Mu’akkadah prayers one should also offer Sunan Ghair Mu’akkadah (the prayers which the Prophet (PBUH) used to leave sometimes without any reason) like Tahajjud (a night prayer), Salat uzzuha (forenoon prayer) Tahiyyatul-wudu (Nafl salah after doing the ablution) and Tahiyyatul Masjid (salah of greeting the mosque).

Consistency in reciting the Holy Qur’an:

Recite the Qur’an on a regular basis, though the recitation is less in amount.

Try to understand the text of the Qur’an while reciting it under the supervision of Islamic scholars. Act upon the rules and legislations laid down in the Holy Quran. Convey its message to others, it is the responsibility of you, me and everyone else.

We should not abandon the recitation of the Qur’an, if we are unable to understand its text because the recitation is also required.

The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Whosoever recites a letter from the Book of Allah, he will be credited with a good deed. And a good deed gets a tenfold reward. I don’t say that Alif, Laam, Meem is one letter, but Alif is a letter, Laam is a letter and Meem is a letter.”, (Tirmidhi).

Dependency on lawful earnings:

Abstain from all the unlawful resources of earning and rely only on lawful earnings, though it is less in amount.

According to Ahadeeth the feet of the slave of Allah shall not move on the Day of Judgment until he is asked about five things. Among these things is the wealth; how he earned it and where he spent it.

Therefore, every Muslim should rely only on the lawful earnings as the Prophet (PBUH) said, “There is no flesh raised sprouts from the unlawful except that the fire is more appropriate for it.”, (Tirmidhi).

The Prophet (PBUH) also said, “The flesh grows out of the unlawful sustenance will not enter the paradise. Hell is more deserving to that flesh, (Musnad Ahmad).

The Prophet (PBUH) said, “But his diet is unlawful, his drink is unlawful, his clothes are (of) unlawful (means) and his nourishment is unlawful. How could his supplication, then, be accepted?”, (Muslim)

Nowadays numerous forbidden things are popular, we must guard ourselves against them.

Messenger of Allah (PBUH) says. “What is lawful is clear and what is unlawful is clear, but between them there are certain doubtful things, so who he guards against doubtful things keeps his religion and his honor blameless, but who falls into doubtful things falls into that which is unlawful, just as a shepherd who grazes his cattle in the vicinity of a pasture declared prohibited, he is liable to stray into it.”, (Bukhari & Muslim).

Religious education and upbringing of children:

Special care should be taken to ensure that our children should live a life equipped with essential rules and legislations concerning shariah, and gain success in the Hereafter.  The failure in the exam of the Hereafter would result into a painful torment for which there is no recompense after death. And shedding the oceans of tears or the oceans of blood would be of no use. It should be noted that if we live a worldly life, keeping in perspective the life of the Hereafter, then taking care of children’s education or spending the money on it will cause to make ourselves successful in this world and the Hereafter. But nowadays, the modern education has become valuable to the extent that the children are not forced to offer prayers and observe fasts even after reaching the age of puberty, with the pretension that they have to do their homework, complete their projects, and prepare for exam and so on. Such a behavior suggests that for worldly education every sacrifice that requires time, wealth or physical labor is easier than acting upon the orders and instructions given by Allah.

Stay away from the misuse of television and internet:

The misuse of television is one of the primary causes for the spread of a number of social evils. Therefore, guard yourself and your children against watching indecent, obscene and immodest TV shows. Keep an eye on your children and household to protect them from the failure caused by such a modern media. Because you would also be asked about your dependents. Allah says in the Qur’an “O ye who believe! Save yourself and your families from a fire whose fuel is Men and stones.”, (Tahreem - 6).

May Allah the exalted accept all those deeds performed in the month of mercy and forgiveness and free us from the hell, Amen!   

Mohammad Najeeb Qasmi (www.najeebqasmi.com)