Orland Park Prayer Center

The Prayer Center of Orland Park

وَالۡفَجۡرِۙ‏ ﴿89:1﴾ وَلَيَالٍ عَشۡرٍۙ‏ ﴿89:2﴾ وَّالشَّفۡعِ وَالۡوَتۡرِۙ‏ ﴿89:3﴾ وَالَّيۡلِ اِذَا يَسۡرِ

“By the dawn, and the Ten Nights of the Month of Pilgrimage! By all that is even and all that is odd, and the night as it passes!”

(Translation from Ahmad Zaki Hammad)

Indeed, the best Islamic days of the year are upon us! One may ask, “I thought the best days of the year were the last ten nights of Ramadan?” However, that is not exactly true. In fact, this is a very common misconception that many Muslims make. Ramadan is the most blessed month of the year. However, the last ten nights of Ramadan are the most blessed nights of the year, not the best days! It is said that the nights of Ramadan are the best nights in the year and the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah are the best days of the year. It is very important to recognize and make that distinction between the daytime versus the night time. Our beloved Prophet ﷺ stated, “There are no days of the year that are more beloved to Allahﷻ that a person does good in those days than the first 10 days of Dhul Hijjah.” A man asked, “Oh Messengerﷺ of Allahﷻ, even Jihad?” The Prophetﷺ responded, “Even Jihad, except if a man leaves with all of his property, all of his belongings, money, and life and he dies as a martyr in the battle.”

These first ten days of Dhul Hijjah hold a very high importance in Islam as they are the days in which the Hajj Pilgrimage is performed by millions of Muslims. All of these Muslim pilgrims come from all around the world and from all walks of life to the holy city of Makkah to perform this Islamic duty. Furthermore, Dhul Hijjah marks the very last month of the Islamic calendar. Therefore, the Prophetﷺ encourages us to perform as many acts of worship as possible and to amplify our good deeds during these first ten days of the month leading up to Eid Al-Adha. Indeed, there are no other days more beloved to Allahﷻ than these days and all acts of worship performed during this time will be elevated beyond what we can imagine in the eyes of Allahﷻ. These days are so important that Allahﷻ actually swears an oath upon them in the Quran. In the opening verses of Surat Al-Fajr, Allahﷻ swears an oath upon these ten days of Dhul Hijjah.

One of the best, if not the most important act of worship to do during these days is Dhikr. Dhikr is simply the remembrance of Allahﷻ. Dhikr is an act of worship in which we repeat words of remembrance of Allahﷻ the almighty. Such words are Tasbih (SubhanAllah), Tahmid (Alhamdulillah), Tahlil (La Illaha Illa Allah), and Takbir (AllahuAkbar). The importance of Dhikr can be seen clearly through the constant chants of the pilgrims throughout their entire Hajj journey. They are constantly repeating words of Dhikr each day, all day. This special Dhikr is called “Talbiyah.” It is a devotional prayer uttered by pilgrims during Hajj or Umrah after making the intention to enter into the state of Ihram. It is recited frequently throughout the pilgrimage. The Talbiyah translates in English to “At Your service, Allahﷻ, at Your service. At Your service, You have no partner, at Your service. Truly all praise, favor and sovereignty is Yours. You have no partner.”

It is important to mention that although Dhikr is the best form of worship to make during these days, it is not the only act of worship. Fasting is also another highly recommended and rewarded act of worship. Especially on the day of Arafah. The day of Arafah is the 9th day of Dhul Hijjah and it is the day before Eid Al-Adha. In the Quran, in Surat Al-Ma’idah, Allahﷻ states about this day, “Today I have perfected your faith for you, completed My favor upon you, and chosen Islam as your way.” For this reason, it is highly recommended to fast this day. Abu Qatadah Al-Ansari (RAA) narrated, ‘The Messengerﷺ of Allah ﷺ was asked about fasting on the day of Arafah (the 9th of the month of Dhul Hijjah). He replied, “Fasting on the day of Arafah is an expiation for the preceding year and the following year.”

As the most blessed days of the year are just coming upon us, let us not waste them my brothers and sisters! Spends these days in worship through engaging in the constant remembrance of Allahﷻ (Dhikr) and fasting as much as we can, especially the day of Arafah. No matter what you are doing, whether you are at work, school, the Masjid, etc, it is easy to engage in Dhikr. Train your tongue to constantly utter words of Dhikr and the reward will be immense in the eyes of Allahﷻ.

We ask Allahﷻ to allow us to witness these most blessed days of Dhul Hijjah. We ask Allahﷻ to accept from us our deeds and to forgive us for our sins. We ask Allahﷻ to protect the people of Gaza, to cure their wounded, have mercy upon and accept their martyrs, and to grant them peace very soon. Allahumma Ameen.

By Ahmad Salah


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