30 Steps in Sha‘baan to Prepare for Ramadan - IV
20- Perform new acts of worship that you have never done before. For example, recite 1000 verses (that is equal to Part 29 and Part 30 in the Quran) or give a large sum of money as charity, to prepare yourself and be inclined to perform greater acts of worship in Ramadan.
21- Try to attend a funeral prayer then follow it until burial, since doing so entails great reward, and the reward multiplies in Ramadan. Ibn 'Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that the Messenger of Allah, , said: “Whoever attends the funeral until the prayer has been offered will have one Qiraat (of reward).” [An-Nasaa'i] The Messenger of Allah, , was asked about the Qiraat, he replied: “It is equal to ‘Uhud” (a mountain in Al-Madeenah).” [Al-Albaani: Saheeh]
Abu Bakr ibn Ka'b may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that the Messenger of Allah, , said: “Whoever attends a funeral prayer he is rewarded with a Qiraat, and if he attends its burial he is rewarded with two Qiraats. By He whom the soul of Muhammad is in His hands, a single Qiraat is larger than mount ‘Uhud.” [Ibn Maajah, Al-Albaani: Saheeh li-ghayrih]
22- Organize your time and make a timetable to evaluate your performance and the acts of worship you schedule for yourself. This is not an innovation in the religion, but is only a practical measure to monitor your acts of worship and to attain Paradise, Allah willing, which is your chief aim.
23- Withdraw bit-by-bit from meaningless gatherings that waste your time. Boycott TV and all other distraction – even if they are permissible. Naturally, if they are forbidden then it is compulsory to abandon them completely and repent with the intention of never returning to them again.
24- Ramadan is a great chance for smokers to quit this harmful and evil habit. Accustom yourself from now on to leave it and make an intention to quit it completely for the sake of Allah The Almighty and then for the sake of your health. Ask Allah The Almighty to help you with this and rest assured that if you ask Him with sincerity He will help you.
25- From this moment on, engage your tongue to be moist with the remembrance and mention of Allah The Almighty; do not slacken in the remembrance and mention of Allah The Almighty, seeking forgiveness, glorifying Allah The Almighty and reciting Takbeer (i.e. Allahu Akbar). It is an easy form of worship with a heavy and great reward from Allah The Almighty.
26- Organize your daily work schedule beginning from Sha‘baan so that your distraction from worship may decrease in Ramadan. Prioritize your tasks and needs so that you cover most of it before Ramadan starts.
27- Revise what you have memorized of the Noble Quran or memorize some new Soorahs (chapters) in Sha‘baan so that you could recite it in your supererogatory prayers in Ramadan. How happy is the one who prays and supplicates with verses he knows by heart!
28- Malls and shops are crowded in Ramadan and unfortunately, all kinds of indecency is widespread in such places, so avoid going there during Ramadan by buying your grocery, ‘Eed clothes, and other things in Sha‘baan.
29- Try to formulate a plan for all the people around you to implement to prepare for Ramadan in your house, workplace and the Masjid. By doing so, people will feel the greatness of this beautiful month rather than being misled by the dissolute people who call towards watching serials and indecent shows. Many TV channels make it a point to broadcast their grandest and most lascivious productions during Ramadan, as opposed to ordinary days, in order to mislead people and draw them away from worship.
30- Approach children over seven years of age in your family, and motivate them to get used to fasting. Let them begin with a quarter of a day then increase to half a day and more and reward them for their efforts. Thus when Ramadan begins, fasting becomes easy for them.
This was an attempt to provide some guidelines to follow during the month of Sha'baan in preparation for the blessed month of Ramadan. However, one can custom make his own list and add to this whatever he/she sees more suitable for his/her own situation.