Dhul Hijja or the Possessor of Hajj, the twelve and final month of the year in the Islamic Calendar is here. If the month is important, its first ten days are considered sacred and even more important. These days are often referred to as the best ten days of the year because in them and according to the Holy Prophet, no good deeds are more loved by Allah than those performed during this period. It is during these days that Hajj, one of the most important pillars of Islam is performed. Among these days is also the day of Arafat which is considered by Muslims as the greatest day in the whole of the year. These first ten days are also climaxed with an important Islamic Festival known as the Eid Al - Adha where Muslims pray, visit families and sacrifice animals in honour of Prophet’s Ibrahim’s willingness and attempt to sacrifice his son Ismael to God. In Quran 89 : 2, Allah invoked these ten nights to signify its sanctity and glory.
It is reported that the Prophet during his lifetime will spend these days in solitude where he meditates, seeks forgiveness, and increases his prayers and praises of his Lord and master. For this reason, scholars of Islam have admonished that Muslims also increase their acts of worship in these ten nights in order to rip its full benefits and blessings. Luckily, we have scoured the scriptures and able to come through with these practices that will ensure we tap into the blessings of these ten days. Read to find out the things you can do during these sacred days of the calendar.
RECITE THE QURAN: Reading the Quran and reflecting on its meanings is a good deed and Allah especially loves the good deeds done in these days. Read as much as you can, even if it is a few verses each day.
OFFER MORE SALAT: Make it a habit to offer your compulsory salats in congregation and spare some time to do more non obligatory salats to increase worship and good deeds.
MAKE LOTS OF DHIKR: Prophet Muhammad said: “There are no days that are greater before Allah or in which good deeds are more beloved to Him, than these ten days, thereby spend days thanking, praising and glorifying your Lord. So during these days Muslims are advised to increase their sayings of Subhanallah, Alhamdulillah and Laa Illaha illallah.
SEEK FORGIVENESS: Use these blessed days to seek forgiveness for all our wrongdoings for the Lord said: if his slaves spend their time asking for forgiveness for their shortcomings, he will forgive them, bless them with rain, increase their yields or sustenance and bless them with beautiful children.
FASTING: It is Sunnah for the Muslim to fast on the first nine days of Dhul-Hijjah, because fasting is one of the best of deeds. In hadith Qudsi, God says: “All the deeds of the son of Adam are for him, except fasting, which is for Me and I shall reward for it.” Prophet Muhammad also said, “Fasting on the day of Arafah expiates the sins of two years: the past one and the coming one.”
GIVE IN CHARITY: Giving alms either in cash or in kind is one deed beloved to the almighty Allah. To attain the blessings and favour of the Lord beyond these ten, ensure that you increase the frequency with which you give in charity.
PRESERVE FAMILY TIES: Maintaining family ties is cherished by the Creator. If you cannot find time to do it all year around, ensure that you spend these holy days calling each member of your family to find out how they are fairing. Do not forget to pay personal visits to those in near proximity. The Prophet said: “Whoever would like his provision to be increased and his lifespan to be extended, let him maintain the ties of kinship.”
On the day of Eid, dress in your most beautiful apparel and visit your community's prayer ground to pray with your family and friends. Thereafter, maintain zhikr and offer sacrifice if you can afford to do so
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