Archive for the Ramadan Category

‘Id al-Fitr: ِHappiness and Acceptance

Posted in Ramadan on September 19, 2009 by Tarek Mehanna

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Qays bin Sa’d said:

“I see everything that we used to do during the era of Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم) except for one thing: they used to play and celebrate in front of him on the day of ‘Id al-Fitr.”

This was reported by Ibn Majah (1303), and declared authentic by Muqbil al-Wadi’i in ‘al-Jami’ as-Sahih’ (2/451) through one of its three chains.

It’s mentioned in ‘Lisan al-‘Arab’ (3/319) that Ibn al-A’rabi said:

‘Id is called ‘Id because it returns (ya’ud) every year with renewed happiness.”

Ibn ‘Abidin said in his ‘Hashiyah’ (2/165):

‘Id was given this name because Allah brings back His customary Kindness to His worshipers that they would experience everyday. For example, they can now eat after they were fasting, they receive the Sadaqat al-Fitr…etc. Also, because the custom on this day is happiness and joy, and energy and rejoicing.”

Ibn Hajar mentioned in ‘Fath al-Bari’ (2/446) that the practice of the Companions on this day was to say:

تقبل الله منا و منك

Taqabbal Allah minna wa mink

‘May Allah accept from us and you’

In the Shade of Laylat al-Qadr

Posted in Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalani, Ibn Kathir, Ramadan, Sayyid Qutb on September 13, 2009 by Tarek Mehanna

1 – The Meaning of Qadr

Ibn Hajar said in ‘Fath al-Bari’ (4/323-324):

“There are various explanations of the meaning of the qadr that this night is ascribed to.

It was said that it means veneration, as in the verse: {“…and they didn’t venerate (qadar) Allah as He deserved…”} [al-An’am; 91] This refers to it being a night of veneration due to the revelation of the Qur’an taking place in it, or due to the descent of the Angels in it, or due to the blessing and mercy and forgiveness that descend in it, or that those who stay up that night in worship are venerated.

It was also said that qadr here means constriction, as in the verse: {“…and who is constricted (qadara) in his provision…”} [at-Talaq; 7] This refers to it being a night of constriction due to the exact night being hidden, or because the Earth is constricted due to the presence of such a large number of Angels.

It was also said that it is qadar, derived from the word for judgment. This refers to the fact that all the judgments of that year are made on this night…”

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Being Generous: A Source of Relaxation

Posted in Ibn al-Qayyim, Ramadan on September 7, 2009 by Tarek Mehanna

“…The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) was the most generous person in giving away what he owned, and he would never look at something as being either too big or too insignificant to give up for the sake of Allah.

Nobody would ask him for anything except that he gave it to them, regardless of how big or small it was.  He gave things away in a way that made it seem that he never feared poverty, and generosity and charity were the most beloved things to him. His happiness and joy in giving something away was more than that felt by those who would accept his gifts. He was the most generous person, and his generosity was like the blowing wind.

If a person in need would approach him, he would always prefer that person to himself. This was sometimes in the form of food, and was sometimes in the form of clothing.

He would have variety in terms of how he would give things away:

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Recommendations for Qur’an Recitation

Posted in Hasan Ayyub, Ramadan on September 1, 2009 by Tarek Mehanna

“…It is recommended to use miswak and to clean your mouth before reciting the Qur’an, as well as to cleanse your body using some kind of pleasant scent in order to respect the time in which you are reading.

Wear the clothes that you would wear in front of others to look good, because you are in front of the Bestower despite this privacy. The one who recites someone else’s words is like one who is speaking on his behalf, and this is the pinnacle of honor from Allah.

It is recommended to be sitting and to be facing the Qiblah. Sa’id bin al-Musayyab was asked about a hadith while he was leaning back. So, he sat up and said: “I hate to relay the words of the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) while I’m leaning back,” and the Words of Allah are even more deserving of such an attitude.

And it is recommended to have ablution…”

[‘al-Hadith fi ‘Ulum al-Qur’an wal-Hadith’; p. 67]

Better than a Martyr’s Blood

Posted in Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalani, Ramadan on August 28, 2009 by Tarek Mehanna

The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said:

“By the One in Whose Hand my soul is, the breath of the fasting person is more pleasant with Allah than the smell of musk.”

In ‘Fath al-Bari’ (4/138), Ibn Hajar commented:

“What can be gained from this is that the fasting person’s breath is better than the blood of a martyr. This is because the martyr’s blood was likened to the smell of musk,* while the fasting person’s breath was described as being even better than the smell of musk. And this doesn’t necessitate that fasting is better than shahadah, for obvious reasons…”

* In a hadith reported by al-Bukhari and Muslim

Overeating During Iftar

Posted in al-Ghazzali, Ramadan on August 25, 2009 by Tarek Mehanna

“…One should not overeat while breaking the fast to the point that he fills his stomach, as there isn’t any container that Allah hates more than a full stomach. How can one benefit from fasting and subdue this enemy and break this desire if he breaks his fast by making up for it through eating everything that he missed out on during the day? In fact, some even eat more than they usually would during the day! This habit has continued to the point that so many types of food are prepared for Ramadan that more food is eaten in this month than in any other month.

It is known that the whole point of fasting is discipline and to break one’s desire in order to strengthen the soul with taqwa. So, if you prevent your digestive system from food all day long until night such that its desire and longing for food goes wild, and you then feed it what it wants until it is fully satisfied, this will only increase its desire and multiply its energy, and it will manifest a longing that wouldn’t have been there had it been left to its usual intake.

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Tarawih: Home or Masjid?

Posted in Ramadan, The Words of the Salaf on August 24, 2009 by Tarek Mehanna

al-Marwazi mentioned in ‘Mukhtasar Qiyam al-Layl’ (p. 231) that a man asked al-Hasan al-Basri:

“O Aba Sa’id! This Ramadan has come upon me while I have read (or memorized) the Qur’an. What do you think I should do: pray alone, or join a congregation of Muslims and pray with them?”

He replied:

“You should look to what benefits you most. So, look to which of the two places will make your heart more tender and your concentration better, and that is where you should go.”