Glad Tidings and Blessings of Ramadan

Glad Tidings and Blessings of Ramadan
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The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), used to give glad tidings to his Companions upon the arrival of Ramadan, and informed them that in this month the gates of Paradise are opened, the gates of Hell are closed, and the devils are chained. He,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said:“When the first night of Ramadan comes, the doors of Paradise will be opened and the doors of Hell will be closed, and the devils will be chained, and it will be said, 'O you who desires virtue! Come forth and O you who desires evil! Stay behind', and Allah has people whom He frees from Hell every night (in that month).” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]. 

Many narrations commend the virtue of fasting in Ramadan, praying during its nights, and fasting in general. The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), said:
  • “You have been approached by a blessed month, during which Allah shades you with His mercy, forgives your sins, responds to your supplications and looks at your competition in virtuous deeds and boasts in front of the angels (about them), so show Allah from yourselves that which is good, because the miserable one is he who is deprived from the mercy of Allah (in this month).”
  • “Whoever fasts (the month of) Ramadan out of faith, anticipating the reward of Allah, then all his sins prior to that will be forgiven; and whoever prays the Ramadan (night prayer) out of faith, anticipating the reward of Allah, then all his sins prior to that will be forgiven.” [Muslim and Bukhari].
  • “The fasting person has two times when he will rejoice, one at the time he breaks his fast, and one when he meets his Lord. I swear by the One in Whose Hand my soul is, the smell of the mouth of a fasting person is better in the sight of Allah than the smell of musk."
Special attention should be paid to the five daily prayers, because they are the greatest obligation after the two testimonies of faith (Shahaadatayn). Men should perform these obligatory prayers with the congregation, as Allah The Almighty Says (what means):
  • {“And be steadfast in prayer; practice regular charity; and bow down your heads with those who bow down (in worship)."}[Quran, 2: 43].
  • {“Guard strictly the (five obligatory) prayers especially the middle prayer (i.e. the best prayer - ‘Asr). And stand before Allah with obedience."}[Quran, 2: 238] 
The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: “The pledge between us (i.e., the believers) and them (i.e., the disbelievers) is (expressed by the performance of) prayer, whosoever abandons it has disbelieved.” [Ahmad].
The next obligation is paying the obligatory charity (Zakah). Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {“And they were commanded not, but that they should worship Allah, and worship none but Him Alone, and perform prayer and give Zakah, and that is the right religion" (Al-Bayyinah: 5)and also, “So establish regular Prayer and give regular Charity (Zakah); and obey the Messenger; that you may receive mercy."}[Quran, 24: 56]
After this comes the obligation of fasting the month of Ramadan, which is one of the five pillars mentioned in the Prophetic narration:“Islam was established on five pillars: the two testimonies (of faith), the establishment of prayer, fasting, obligatory charity and pilgrimage." [Al-Bukhari, Muslim].
A Muslim should guard his fasting and night prayers because the objective of fasting is to obey Allah The Almighty,  struggle against the soul's desires and whims by training one's self to patiently persevere, and refrain from what prohibited matters. Refraining from food, drink, and other things which nullify the fast was never the chief objective behind fasting. This is why the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said:
  • “Fasting is a protection, so when one of you fasts, let him not touch his wife (for sexual relations), and let him not badmouth anyone, and if someone fights him or upsets him, let him say, 'I am fasting, I am fasting.'”
  • “Whoever does not refrain from falsehood in sayings and deeds and acts of ignorance (whilst fasting), Allah has no need of his abstention from food and drink."[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

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