Ep. 47 The Forties – Benefiting from the Night of Qadr

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 47 – Benefiting from the Night of Qadr

أَبِي جَعْفَرٍ ع قَالَ: إِنَّ النَّبِيَّ ص لَمَّا انْصَرَفَ‏ مِنْ‏ عَرَفَاتٍ‏ وَ سَارَ إِلَى مِنًى دَخَلَ الْمَسْجِدَ فَاجْتَمَعَ إِلَيْهِ النَّاسُ يَسْأَلُونَهُ عَنْ لَيْلَةِ الْقَدْرِ فَقَامَ خَطِيباً فَقَالَ بَعْدَ الثَّنَاءِ عَلَى اللَّهِ أَمَّا بَعْدُ فَأَيُّكُمْ سَأَلْتُمُونِي عَنْ لَيْلَةِ الْقِدْرِ فَلَمْ أَطْوِهَا عَنْكُمْ لِأَنِّي لَمْ أَكُنْ بِهَا عَالِماً اعْلَمُوا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ أَنَّهُ مَنْ‏ وَرَدَ عَلَيْهِ شَهْرُ رَمَضَانَ وَ هُوَ صَحِيحٌ سَوِيٌّ فَصَامَ نَهَارَهُ وَ قَامَ وِرْداً مِنْ لَيْلِهِ وَ وَاظَبَ عَلَى صَلَاتِهِ وَ هَاجَرَ إِلَى جُمُعَتِهِ وَ غَدَا إِلَى عِيدِهِ فَقَدْ أَدْرَكَ لَيْلَةَ الْقَدْرِ وَ فَازَ بِجَائِزَةِ الرَّبِّ قَالَ فَقَالَ أَبُو عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع فَازَ وَ اللَّهِ بِجَوَائِزَ لَيْسَتْ كَجَوَائِزِ الْعِبَادِ.

In Hadith #6 Imam Baqir (a) says: When the Prophet (p) left Arafat and went towards Mina, he entered a masjid and people gathered around him and asked him about the Night of Qadr. So he stood up addressing them and after he praised Allah (swt) he said: Whoever amongst you asks me about the night of Qadr, know that I am not hiding information regarding it because I am not aware of it. O people! Know that, a person who enters the month of Ramadan while they are hale and healthy, they should fast during the day and spend a part of night in Allah’s worship, they guard their prayers, and offer the Friday and Eid prayers, then they have surely encountered the night of Qadr and have become a receiver of the bounties of their Lord’.”

The narrator says that Imam Ja’far Sadiq (a) said, “That person has received such bounties, which are not at all comparable to the bounties of human beings.”

In this narration, we learn that the Prophet (p) is not hiding the exact night on which the night of Qadr occurs because he doesn’t know, no – rather he’s concealing this information because he doesn’t want people to restrict their acts of worship to just that one night. He wants them to benefit from the whole month, and benefit from the nights, especially the last 10 nights as much as they can, assuming that it might be the night of Qadr. In other words, the Prophet has not been ordered to tell us what night Qadr exactly is, and because he was not ordered by Allah (swt), he himself also chose not to do so, because of the benefit he saw in it.

If people knew the night with certainty, they would just engage in worship on that night, receive the rewards for it, and then become deprived of the rewards that are also promised and given for the remaining nights of the month. Also, note that the Prophet (p) gives a pretty lengthy timeline in this narration, he says that if you are healthy and can fast the whole month, and you do so, and then you also ensure you don’t miss your prayers, you offer the Friday prayers, and you offer the Eid prayers then you would have surely reaped the benefits of the night of Qadr. In other words, the Prophet (p) was telling his companions to make sure they benefit from the entire month, not even just the last 10 nights. This is a highly motivating tradition, it shows the care and love the Prophet (p) actually had for his followers, he wants us to benefit from the month, he doesn’t want us to be deprived of even a little bit of the blessings Allah (swt) bestows upon us during this month, he doesn’t want us to just limit ourselves to one night. The decision to not inform us is something the Prophet (p) had done for our own good and by this we should also try and comprehend the general significance for the entire month of Ramadhan, for if it was not so significant, the Prophet would have not have gone to such an extent to hide the exact date for the night of Qadr.

In the next episode, we’ll read a tradition from Imam ‘Alī (a) in which he explains how you can fast in a way where you will get the reward for having fasted for your entire life.

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