Ramadan: The season of mercy

Ramadan: The season of mercy
  • Publish date:26/04/2021
  • Section:Fasting
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There is no better time to start making positive changes in our lives than this blessed month.

Ramadan is a Muslim's recurring opportunity for spiritual enhancement and soul redemption. It is also an annual exercise in self-control and self-restraint, but above all, it is a physical manifestation of our total submission and obedience to Allah Almighty. Because of this submission and obeying of His order, the Muslim fasts, abstaining from food, drink, and sexual intercourse during the days of Ramadan. This is the physical aspect of fasting. By nightfall, the spiritual aspects take over, because while eating, drinking, and sexual relationship between spouses are permitted during nighttime, the Muslim then engages in prayers that take him/her deep into the night. It is a well-balanced program that lifts the spirit, strengthens the resolve, and asserts Tawheed (Islamic Monotheism) as no other act of worship can.

The conduct of our Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) and his Companions  may  Allah  be  pleased  with  them in Ramadan differs a lot than the way Muslims do today. They dedicated their days and nights for worship. Their lives revolved completely around the book of Allah, the Quran. Reciting it in and out of prayers. The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) used to review the whole Quran with Jibreel (Angel Gabriel) once every Ramadan. Imam Al-Bukhari  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him narrated: "Jibreel used to repeat the recitation of the Quran with the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )   once a year (in Ramadan) but he repeated it with him twice in the year he died." The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )   used to stay in ‘I'tikaaf (seclusion in the Masjid) for ten days every year (during Ramadan) but in the year of his death, he stayed in ‘I’tikaaf for twenty days.”

Ramadan is the month of mercy and charity. The mere revelation of the Quran and the commission of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) to the Prophethood are among the greatest manifestations of Allah's mercy. Allah, The Most Exalted, asserts this in numerous verses of the Quran, such as (what means):

• {And We have sent down to you the Book (i.e. the Quran) as clarification for all things and as guidance and mercy and good tidings for the Muslims.} [Quran 16:89]

• {So there has [now] come to you clear evidence from your Lord and a guidance and mercy.} [Quran 6:157]

• {And We had certainly brought them a Book which We detailed by knowledge — as guidance and mercy to a people who believe.} [Quran 7:52]

• {And We send down of the Quran, that which is healing and mercy for the believers, but it does not increase the wrongdoers except in loss.} [Quran 17:82]

And when Allah Almighty referred to the commission of our beloved Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) He said (what means): {And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], except as a mercy to the worlds.} [Quran 21:107]

Moreover, when the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )   said describing himself and listing his attributes: "I am the Prophet of mercy." [Al-Bukhari]

There is no question that our beloved Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) possessed the highest forms of moral and human attributes. Among human beings, he  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) was the most generous, the most merciful, the most courageous, the 'most' and the 'best' of everything good in Islam, and as described by his wife 'Aa'ishah  may  Allah  be  pleased  with  her his morals were the Quran.

The question is: where does this leave us? Some people dismiss their shortcomings by saying: "I am not the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )", but where does it say that you have to be a Prophet to be merciful, or to be generous, or to be anything for that matter? Granted, that no one can be compared to the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) or even hope to partially attain his high levels and standards, but that should not be an excuse for not following his example and striving to be the best Muslims that we can be.

There are many Prophetic narrations that refer to the depravation of an individual from the very thing he deprives others from, or the rewards, in multiples, of that which he provides. Among these narrations are:

1. "Allah will not be Merciful to those who are not merciful to mankind." [Al-Bukhari]

2. "Allah does not bestow His mercy except on the merciful among His slaves." [Al-Bukhari]

3. "Every good deed will be rewarded tenfold, up to seven hundred times, and Allah multiplies to whomever he wills." [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

4. "Allah Says: Spend O son of Aadam and I shall spend upon you." [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

There is no better time to start making positive changes in our lives than this blessed month. In Ramadan, many good things occur: the rewards are multiplied, the devils are chained, the gates of Hellfire are closed, and the gates of Paradise are opened. Every night of Ramadan, Allah redeems believers from the pains of Hellfire. It is the month of mercy, repentance, and charity. Use it or loose it!

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