Posted by: seekerofthesacred | November 13, 2010

The Best Day

BismiLlahir-Rahmanir-Rahim

The Best Day of the Year (Authored by al-Ustadh Amin Buxton, May Allah preserve him and benefit us through him and his teachers)

For those of us have not been blessed with going on Hajj this year, the doors of Allah’s mercy are not closed.

Firstly the Messenger of Allah (sallaLlahu `alayhi wa alihi wa sallam) taught us to fast on the Day of Arafat (9th Dhu’l-Hijja) with the promise that this would wipe away the wrongdoings of the previous year and the wrongdoings of the year to come. For this reason and others it is considered by many to be the best day of the year.  What is meant by the wrongdoings of the coming year being wiped out? The scholars mention that it is either protection from falling into them in the coming year or that if we fall into them we are forgiven. The wrongdoings mentioned are “minor” sins between a person and Allah, not cases where one person has wronged another. This is an immense gift from Allah to the Umma of His Beloved (sallaLlahu `alayhi wa alihi wa sallam) and it would be ungrateful for any of us not to accept it.

Secondly it is a time to turn to Allah to ask for forgiveness and for our needs to be answered. There is nothing to stop any of us setting aside a little time in the afternoon on that day to do so. In doing so we imitate the people standing at Arafat, to whom forgiveness is guaranteed and we ask Allah to give to us what he is giving to them.  “The one who imitates a people is one of them.” Let Allah see our desire for His mercy and His forgiveness especially at that blessed time and let us have no doubt that we will be encompassed by His immense generosity.

We should divide this time between reading the Qur’an (especially Surat al-Ikhlas), spending prayers upon the Prophet (sallaLlahu `alayhi wa alihi wa sallam), and other forms of remembrance, particularly tahlil, or proclaiming the oneness of Allah. The Prophet (sallaLlahu `alayhi wa alihi wa sallam) said: “The best du‘ā’ is the du‘ā’ of the Day of Arafah. The best thing which I and the Prophets before me have said is:

لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ اللهُ وَحْدَهُ لاَ شَرِيكَ لَهُ، لَهُ الْمُلْكُ وَ لَهُ الْحَمْدُ وَ هَو عَلَى كُلِّ شَيءٍ قَدِيرٍ

“There is no god but Allah, alone, He has no partners. To Him belongs the dominion and all praise and He has power over all things.”

If it is possible to gather with a group of people at that time then the reward is greater and the chance of acceptance is higher. This was the way of Sayyiduna `Abdullah Ibn `Abbas and other Companions and it is a tradition in Tarim where hundreds gather in an open square after Asr to remember Allah and make dua until Maghrib.

Eid Takbirs

The Messenger of Allah (sallaLlahu `alayhi wa alihi wa sallam) taught us to fill these blessed days and nights with the remembrance of Allah generally and specifically with the takbir in which we express Allah’s greatness and transcendence.  We should make the takbir after every prayer (fard or nafl) from Fajr on the Day of Arafat (9th Dhu’l-Hijja) until Asr on the 13th, the final day of the three days of tashriq. This year the Day of `Arafat in Saudi Arabia is on Monday, Eid is on Tuesday and the final day of the days of tashriq is Friday.  We should also fill the night before Eid with takbir from Maghrib up until the Eid prayer. On this night only the takbir is not limited to being read after the prayer, but rather it should be read at all times in our houses and mosques and in the streets (without causing disturbance). We should read it with our hearts filled with the greatness of Allah so that we are not merely repeating words without experiencing their meaning.

It is a sunna to give life to the night before Eid, meaning spending whatever time we are able to during that night in worship and remembrance such that the night comes alive. The least we should do is to pray Maghrib, Isha and Fajr in congregation and then devote whatever time we are able to Allah. The mosques of Tarim fill in the the second half of the night with people reading the Qur’an in groups, praying and making takbir together at intervals. At the end of the night everyone comes together for a khatm and dua.

It is mentioned in the hadith that whoever gives life to the nights before the two Eids Allah will give life to his heart on the day when hearts die. What is primarily meant is safety on the Day of Judgement but even in this life the majority of people’s hearts are dead, starved of the remembrance of Allah and heedless of the return to Him. Remembering Allah on nights such as these, however, when most people are busy with other things, will give life and tranquility to our hearts.

Eid then will be a true celebration, an expression of our gratitude to Allah for the ability to worship and remember Him in the previous days and nights. How was the Messenger of Allah (sallaLlahu `alayhi wa alihi wa sallam) ordered to show his gratitude to Allah for the immense good that he was given? So pray to your Lord and slaughter (Sura al-Kawthar) which refers to the Eid Prayer and the sacrifice.

May Allah adorn our hearts and tongues with His remembrance and our bodies with acts of worship. Unite our hearts with those on Hajj, unite the hearts of this Umma and give relief to those who are suffering and help us all to return to Him whatever our state may be.

There are different forms of the takbir. Here is one of them:

اللهُ أَكبرُ اللهُ أَكبرُ اللهُ أَكبر , لا إله إلا الله , الله أكبر الله أكبر ولِلَّهِ الحَمْد (three times)

الله أكبرُ كَبيرا والحمدُ لله كثيرا وسُبْحانَ اللهِ بُكْرَةً وأَصيلاَ .

لا إله إلا الله لا نَعْبُدُ إلا إِيَّاهُ مُخْلِصِين لَهُ الدِّينَ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الكافِرون .

لا إله إلا الله  وَحْدَه صَدَقَ وَعْدَه ونَصَرَ عَبْدَه  وأَعَزَّ جُنْدَه وهَزَمَ الأَحْزَابَ وَحْدَه

لا إله إلا الله واللهُ أكبرْ ولِلَّهِ الحَمْد

“Allah is most great, there is no god but Him, all praise belongs to Him.

There is no god but Him and we worship none but Him in complete sincerity even if the disbelievers dislike it.

There is no god but Him alone. He fulfilled His promise, gave victory to His slave, made mighty His forces and He alone destroyed the Confederates. Allah is most great, there is no god but Him, all praise belongs to Him.”

The scholars say that whenever it is recommended to remember Allah it is also recommended to mention His Messenger (sallaLlahu `alayhi wa alihi wa sallam). Had it not been for him there would be no `Arafat or Eid or takbir. For this reason we should add, in honour of our Messenger, his Companions, wives and progeny:

اللهُمَّ صلِّ على سَيِّدِنا مُحمد

وعلى آلِ سَيِّدِنا مُحمد

وعلى أَصْحابِ سَيِّدِنا مُحمد

وعلى أَنْصَارِ سَيِّدِنا مُحمد

وعلى أَزْواجِ سَيِّدِنا مُحمد

وعلى ذُرِّيِّةِ سَيِّدِنا مُحمد

وسلِّمْ تَسْليماً كثيراً

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Responses

  1. […] guidelines for supplications here and here, Jazakumullahu khaira for these beneficial […]

  2. Salaam Sheikh,

    Please keep me, as well as all other Hujaaj in your esteemed duaas.

    I’m reading this posting from my bed in Makkah, merely two hours before moving to Mina, and then to ‘Arafah.

    Shukran for posting this piece, as well as for being a constant source of inspiration.

    Maa Assalaamah,
    Razeen Carelse (from Cape Town, South Africa)

    • wa `alaykum as-salam wa rahmatuLlah, dear shaykh Razeen! I am no where near a shaykh… I merely post pieces I find inspirational, and I’m glad you’ve found this inspirational likewise! Please do keep me and all the other readers in your duas, especially at `arafah! WOW! You are so blessed, ma sha Allah. Send my salams to the beloved messenger sallaLlahu `alayhi wa alihi wa sallam if you can, too! May Allah bless and reward you for this, was-salam
      Suleiman alMuslim


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