Ep. 46 The Forties – The Merits of the Month of Ramadan

Al-Salam ‘Alaykum, this is Syed Ali Imran – and you are listening to the Forties podcast, brought to you by Mizan Institute.

This is episode 46 – The Merits of the Month of Ramadan

أَبِي جَعْفَرٍ ع قَالَ: خَطَبَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ص فِي آخِرِ جُمُعَةٍ مِنْ شَعْبَانَ فَحَمِدَ اللَّهَ وَ أَثْنَى عَلَيْهِ ثُمَّ قَالَ أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ قَدْ أَظَلَّكُمْ شَهْرٌ فِيهِ لَيْلَةٌ خَيْرٌ مِنْ‏ أَلْفِ‏ شَهْرٍ وَ هُوَ شَهْرُ رَمَضَانَ‏ فَرَضَ اللَّهُ صِيَامَهُ وَ جَعَلَ قِيَامَ لَيْلَةٍ فِيهِ بِتَطَوُّعِ صَلَاةٍ كَمَنْ تَطَوَّعَ بِصَلَاةِ سَبْعِينَ لَيْلَةً فِيمَا سِوَاهُ مِنَ الشُّهُورِ وَ جَعَلَ لِمَنْ تَطَوَّعَ فِيهِ بِخَصْلَةٍ مِنْ خِصَالِ الْخَيْرِ وَ الْبِرِّ كَأَجْرِ مَنْ أَدَّى فَرِيضَةً مِنْ فَرَائِضِ اللَّهِ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ كَمَنْ أَدَّى سَبْعِينَ فَرِيضَةً مِنْ فَرَائِضِ اللَّهِ فِيمَا سِوَاهُ مِنَ الشُّهُورِ وَ هُوَ شَهْرُ الصَّبْرِ وَ إِنَّ الصَّبْرَ ثَوَابُهُ الْجَنَّة

In Hadith #5 Imam Baqir (a) says: The Messenger of Allah (p) gave a sermon on the last Friday of the month of Sha’bān in which he praised and glorified Allah, then said: O people, a month is about to shade you in which a night which is better than a thousand months occurs, and that is the month of Ramaḍan. Allah has made fasting in it obligatory, and one who rises up in the night to pray in it voluntarily, Allah deems their prayers like of a person who prayers for seventy nights in other months. One who voluntarily does a good and charitable deed, Allah deems their good deed similar to someone who performs one of the obligations of Allah, and one who performs an obligatory act, Allah deems their act similar to someone who performs seventy obligatory acts in the rest of the month – this is the month of patience, and the reward for patience is paradise…

The reason why this month is called the month of patience is because the month of Ramaḍān obligates fasting upon all of us, and hence there is a greater extent of effort that we all need to put in, to fast for a whole month. It’s a month where we have to refrain from eating, drinking, other carnal desires, and have to control them with more effort than usual. Such an act of worship requires patience, and it is through this patience that we are rewarded with paradise. As for the rest of the rewards mentioned in this narration, it is very clear that the month of Ramaḍān is one of the greatest months of the year, in fact, it contains the greatest night of the year, which is the night of Qadr. A night which is better than a thousand months, and it is a night that we simply can’t afford to lose it as an opportunity – if Allah (swt) is giving us such a great opportunity, why would we not seek it and make excuses to not benefit from it?

Some people do always wonder about the night of Qadr, how do we know which night it actually is? Is it the 21st, the 23rd or some other night during the last 10 nights? If we don’t know what night it is then how can we prepare ourselves for it? In the next narration, we’ll see the wisdom behind why the exact date has not been told to us.

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