Friday, 22 September 2023 12:10 GMT

Virtues Of The First Ten Days Of Dhul-Hijjah

(MENAFN- Gulf Times)

All praise is due to Allah, and may He render our Prophet Muhammad safe from every derogatory thing, and exalt his mention, and the mention of his household and Companions.
Ibn Abbaas, may Allah be pleased with him, reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said: There are no days during which good deeds are more beloved to Allah than these days; meaning the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah. They inquired: 'Not even Jihad in the cause of Allah?' He said:“Not even Jihad in the cause of Allah, unless one goes out for Jihad sacrificing both his life and property and returning with neither.(Al-Bukhari)
In another version, Ibn Umar (radiallahu 'anhumaa) reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam), said: There are no days during which good deeds are greater or more beloved to Allah than these ten days. So recite more often the Tahleel (Laa Ilaaha Illallah) , Takbeer (Allahu Akbar), Tahmeed (Alhamdulillah). (Imam Ahmad)
Jaabir reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said: The best day is the Day of Arafah.

Ten kinds of observances in these days
First: Performing Haj and 'Umrah, which are the best of all observances. Its excellence is signified by many Prophetic traditions. The Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said: Performing Umrah and following it with another expiates sins that are committed in between. And the perfect Haj would be requited with nothing other than Jannah. There are also many authentic traditions to that effect.
Second: Observing fasting on all or some of these days, particularly on the Day of Arafah. There is no doubt that fasting is the best of observances; for it is one of the observances which Allah relates to Himself, according to the holy tradition (Hadith Qudsi): Fasting is for Me, and I shall requite it. My slave relinquishes his desires, food, and drink for My sake.
Abu Sa'eed al-Khudri (radiallahu 'anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said: Any slave of Allah who observes fast of a day in the cause of Allah, Allah would separate between him and the Fire a distance of seventy years on account of observing that day. (Agreed upon).
Abu Qataadah (radiallahu 'anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said: Observing fasting on the Day of Arafat; I expect Allah to expiate the sins that were committed during the preceding year, and the sins that will be committed in the year after. (Imam Muslim)
Third: Reciting Takbeer, and Dhikr in these days according to the words of Allah, the Exalted: And mention the name of Allah in certain days.[Al-Baqarah 2:203] These certain days are said to be the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah. Therefore, scholars recommend Dhikr more often during these days, according to a tradition which is reported by Ibn Umar (radiallahu 'anhumaa): Therefore, recite more often, Tahleel, Takbeer, and Tahmeed.
Ibn Umar and Abu Hurairah (radiallaahu 'anhum) used to go out to the marketplaces during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah and recite out loud the Takbeer and people would repeat it after them.
Ishaaq (rahimahullah) reported that the jurists (rahimahumullah) used to recite during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah:“Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Laa Ilaaha illallah, wallahu Akbar, wa lillaahil-hamd.” It is commended to recite them out loud in marketplaces, at homes, roads, mosques and elsewhere. According to the commands of Allah: That you may exalt Allah for having guided you, and that you may be grateful to Him. [Al-Baqarah 2:185]
It is not permissible to recite the Takbeer in unison. That is, when a group of people recite the Takbeer in one voice, for it has never been reported that the Pious Predecessors did so. The proper way, according to the Sunnah, is that everyone recites the Takbeer individually. This applies to all supplications and Dhikr; unless one is ignorant, then someone may teach him and he recites after him. It is permissible to recite whatever forms of Takbeer, Tahmeed, and the rest of the legitimate supplications.
Fourth: Repentance and relinquishing acts of disobedience and all sins, in order to acquire forgiveness and mercy. Acts of disobedience are means of banishing, while acts of obedience are means of gaining favour with Allah. Abu Hurairah (radiallahu 'anhu) reported that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said: Verily Allah feels jealous, and the jealousy of Allah is aroused when man violates what Allah prohibits. (Agreed upon)
Fifth: Accomplishing more good deeds of voluntary observances, such as: salaat, charity, Jihad, Qur'anic recitation, enjoining the good and forbidding the wrong, and the like; for the rewards of such observances are multiplied during these days. Observances during these days are unsurpassed in excellence and they are better and more beloved to Allah than other excellent observances including Jihad, which is the best of deeds, unless one sacrifices both, his life and his steed.
Sixth: It is legal during these days the recitation of the Takbeer in general at all times, day or night until 'Eid prayer. The restricted Takbeer is that which is to be recited after the obligatory prayers. As for the non-pilgrims, the Takbeer begins from the Day of Arafah, and for pilgrims it begins from the noon prayer of the Day of Sacrifice and continues until Asr prayer of the last of the days of Tashreeq.
Seventh: Offering the sacrificial animal during the day of sacrifice and the Days of Tashreeq. It is the sunnah of our father Ibraheem, may Allah exalt his mention, in commemoration of the occasion when Allah ransomed Ibraheem's son with a large ram. It has been authentically confirmed that the Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) sacrificed two black and white rams with horns. He killed them with his own hand, and invoked the name of Allah upon them, recited the Takbeer, and placed his foot on their sides, when he killed them. (Agreed upon.)
Eighth: Umm Salamah, may Allah be pleased with her, said: When you see the new moon of Dhul-Hijjah, and one of you wants to sacrifice an animal let him refrain from cutting or shaving his hair or clipping his finger nails, or toenails. In another version: Let him not cut his hair or his fingernails until he has slaughtered his sacrificial animal. This perhaps is enjoined on non-pilgrims to have something in common with the pilgrims who bring along with them their sacrificial animals. Allah, the Exalted, says: And do not shave off your heads until the sacrificial animal is slaughtered. [Al-Baqarah 197] This prohibition seems to apply only to a person who is making the offering, not his dependents, unless one of them has his own sacrificial animal. There is no harm in washing the head even if some hairs fall off.
Ninth: The Muslim must make sure to observe Eid prayer in its designated place, and attend the khutbah of the Eid. He should also know the purpose of the Eid, and that it's a day of giving thanks and a chance for accomplishing good deeds. He should not turn it into a day of mischief, disobedience, or an excuse for violating the prohibited things; such as singing music, illegitimate amusements, or the like. All of these things are detestable and nullify the good deeds that one may have accomplished during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.
Tenth: After knowing all the above observances, every Muslim, male or female, must utilise these days in obedience to Allah, remembering Him, expressing gratefulness to him, fulfilling all the obligatory observances, avoiding the reprehensible things and taking advantage of this season to acquire His mercy and the pleasure. It Allah alone who grants success and guides to the right path. May He exalt the mention of Muhammad, and his household, and Companions. (By Shaykh Abdullah Ibn Abdur-Rahman al-Jibreen)

'Water the garden of so-and-so'
Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that the Prophet, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam (may Allah exalt his mention), said:“While a man was in a barren tract of land (or a desert), he heard a voice proceeding from a cloud (saying): 'Water the garden of so-and-so.' Thereupon, the cloud drifted (in a certain direction), and water poured down therefrom over a rocky area. All the streamlets flowed into one large channel. The man followed the water and came upon a man standing in his garden, changing the course of the water with his spade. He said to him: 'O Slave of Allah, what is your name?' The man said: 'So-and-so.' It was that very name which he had heard from the cloud! The man said: 'O slave of Allah, why do you ask me my name?' He said: 'I heard a voice from the clouds which poured down this water, saying:“Water the garden of so-and-so,” mentioning your name. What do you do with it (to receive such divine providence from Allah)?' The man said: 'Now that you ask me, I will tell you. I look at the produce of the garden, give one-third of it in charity, use one third for myself and my dependants to eat therefrom, and invest (the remaining) third back into the garden.'” [Muslim]

The detailed story
It may seem to those who perceive things based on their outward appearances that giving in charity to the poor and showing kindness to the needy are nothing but squandering wealth, wasting savings, and reasons for capital shortage.
This is the purely materialistic view on charity, but the Islamic preceptive on it is dramatically different. In Islam, spending in charity is a means to increase wealth and having it blessed, just as a person would sow a seed in the soil and it soon germinates and grows quickly into a tall, lush, and fruitful tree.
Allah, The Exalted, continues to shower His allies and slaves who hasten to give in charity with His kindness. He safeguards them from afflictions, increases their livelihood, blesses them with abundant good and success, and bestows upon them His grace. Could a person endowed with the help and care of his Creator ever be lost?
The best evidence of that is the Hadith under discussion. It relates the story of a righteous farmer, endowed with generosity and kindness at a time when such qualities had become rare, who subdued his human nature, which is innately inclined to miserliness and withholding wealth, and elevated himself to a refined spiritual status.
A man was walking in the desert, where water and vegetation are scarce, and he heard a voice saying:“Water the garden of so-and-so.” He marvelled at what he heard in such a deserted place, where not a soul could be seen, and then realised that the voice came from the cloud above him! He was even more amazed and determined to explore the matter.
Filled with curiosity, the man set out behind the moving cloud to know its final destination. It stopped over a stony area full of black rocks, the rain poured down, and the water ran until it reached a garden, where there was a farmer standing to channel and direct the water flow.
The man went to the farmer and asked him what his name was. To his surprise, it was the same name he had heard from the cloud! Naturally, the owner of the garden was surprised by the question, so he asked the man:“O slave of Allah, why do you ask me my name?” The man told him about the cloud and what he had heard and seen and explained to him his sincere eagerness to know the secret behind such divine help and providence he received.
The answer came to reveal the truth and solve the mystery. The owner of the garden used to divide the produce of his garden into three parts; he gave one part in charity for the poor and needy, preserved the second part to provide for himself and his dependants, and invested the third part in the garden.

Reflections on the story
This ray of light from the Prophet's Sunnah underlines the virtue of charity and its value in the sight of Allah, The Almighty. Giving in charity is a manifestation of human solidarity and a sign of a live conscience, a sense of duty, and responsibility towards others, and this contributes to the strength and cohesion of the community.
The blessings from the cloud that this righteous farmer received were glad tidings for him in the worldly life. As to the honour and blessings which Allah, The Exalted, has prepared for him in the Hereafter, they are far greater.
Among the lessons deduced from the story is that spending on the needy and relieving the distress of Muslims are profitable trade with Allah, The Exalted, in which the investor never loses. Allah, The Exalted, bestows His blessings upon His slaves who spend in charity and increases their wealth. He renders charity a means to increase provisions, as evidenced by the verse that reads (what means): {But whatever thing you spend [in His cause] – He will compensate it; and He is the best of providers.} [Qur'an 34:39] Moreover, the Qudsi Hadith reads:“Spend (on charity), O son of Adam, and I shall spend on you.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
The value of work and its position in Islam can also be inferred from the story. This farmer did not isolate himself or renounce the worldly life; rather, he worked hard, availed himself of the available means, sought after earning his livelihood, and then gave in charity. This is how an active nation should be; it builds and strives to assume its proper place among the great nations.

Article source: Relatives are more deserving of your kindness
Allah The Almighty has praised those who fulfil the needs of the poor and the needy in different places in His Noble Book. He, The Exalted, also gave great rewards for those who spend in charity. Allah The Exalted Says (what means): {And those within whose wealth is a known right. For the petitioner and the deprived.} [Qur'an 70:24-25] The Lord The Almighty has explained that the reward for such generosity and spending is great; He The Almighty Says (what means): {Believe in Allah and His Messenger and spend out of that in which He has made you successors. For those who have believed among you and spent, there will be a great reward.} [Qur'an 57:7]
As a reward for the greatness of spending in charity, Allah The Almighty has made a special gate to Paradise, and no one can pass through it other than them. In this regard the Prophet, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam (may Allah exalt his mention), said in the authentic Hadith (narration):“Whoever is one of the people of charity will be called from the gate of charity.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
The reward of charity is multiplied if it is given during the blessed time which Allah The Almighty has endowed with special advantages and virtues. Ramadan is one of such great seasons in which the Muslim should strive to spend in the different ways and avenues of good deeds and righteous acts as much as he can, following the example of the Messenger of Allah. He, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam, used to spend more in charity in the month of Ramadan than in any other month. It was proved in the two Saheehs (books of authentic narrations) that he, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam, was the most generous of people, and he would be even more so in the month of Ramadan when Jibreel (Gabriel), may Allah exalt his mention, met him to study the Qur'an with him. The Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam, would be more generous than the blowing wind, in doing good. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
This proves the virtues of spending in Ramadan. These virtues may take a higher noble rank and a more sublime position if one gives charity to his kin and those closely related to him if they are among the needy and poor – it is considered even better than spending on strangers. This can be substantiated by the Saying of Allah The Almighty (which means): {They ask you, [O Muhammad], what they should spend. Say,“Whatever you spend of good is [to be] for parents and relatives.} [Qur'an 2:215]
The most deserving and those who should be given preference are the people who have greater right over you such as parents to whom one has to be very dutiful. Amongst the greatest forms of dutifulness towards them is to spend on them, then other relatives according to the degree of closeness and need. Spending on them is a charity and a way of upholding the ties of kinship. [Tafseer As-Sa'di]
The advice of your Messenger, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam: Abu Talhah, may Allah be pleased with him, had more property than any other amongst the Ansaar (Helpers) in Al-Madinah and the most beloved of his property to him was a garden called Bayruhaa', which was in front of the Mosque of the Prophet. The Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam, used to go there and drink from its fresh water. Anas, may Allah be pleased with him, said:“When this verse was revealed: {Never will you attain the good [reward] until you spend [in the way of Allah] from that which you love.} [Qur'an 3:92]
Abu Talhah, may Allah be pleased with him, said to the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam: 
“'O Messenger of Allah! Allah The Almighty Says: {Never will you attain the good [reward] until you spend [in the way of Allah] from that which you love} and no doubt, the garden of Bayruhaa' is the most beloved of all my property to me. So I want to give it in charity in the cause of Allah. I expect its reward from Allah The Almighty. O Messenger of Allah! Spend it wherever Allah The Almighty instructs you.' On that, the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam, said: 'That is a good deal! That is a good deal! I heard what you have said (O Abu Talhah), and I recommend that you distribute it among your relatives.' Abu Talhah said, 'I will do so, O Messenger of Allah.' Then Abu Talhah distributed that garden amongst his relatives and cousins.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
Why such virtue?
You may be interested in knowing the reason behind this virtue. Read what the Prophet, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam, said:“Charity given to a poor person is charity, but charity given to a relative is two things, charity and upholding the ties of kinship.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
The eminent scholar Al-Munaawi, may Allah have mercy upon him, said:“It involves two rewards, unlike spending on strangers which has only one reward. The Hadith also includes an explicit indication that the action may combine the reward of two actions for it achieves their aims. So, its doer will receive all the rewards that are mentioned about them out of the pure generosity and kindness of Allah The Almighty.” [Faydh Al-Qadeer]
The most deserving of relatives (of one's charity)
If you would like to know more about who are the most deserving of charity among your relatives, they are divided into two categories:
First: the orphan, because Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {But he has not broken through the difficult pass. And what can make you know what is [breaking through] the difficult pass? It is the freeing of a slave. Or feeding on a day of severe hunger. An orphan of near relationship.} [Qur'an 90:11-15], meaning, an orphan who has a close relationship with you. Spending on orphan relatives takes precedence over spending on others if their need is equal because relatives are more deserving of your goodness. [Mustafa Al-'Adawi; Silsilat At-Tafseer]
As-Sayyid Murtadha, may Allah have mercy upon him, said:“This is encouragement for giving precedence to the needy among relatives over strangers.” [Mahaasin At-Ta'weel]
Second: the relative who harbours a grudge against you and dislikes you. The Prophet, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam, said:“The best charity is that given to a relative who does not like you.” [Ahmad; Al-Albaani: Saheeh]
The wisdom behind this is that it implies a way of forcing the soul to humble itself before its enemies. It is better in reward than that which is spent on a stranger for he (the relative) is the most deserving of good deeds. [Faydh Al-Qadeer]
Others who are like relatives:
1- Neighbours. Allah The Almighty has recommended observing kindness to them with His Exalted Saying: {The neighbour who is near of kin, and the neighbour who is a stranger.} [Qur'an 5:36]
2- Friends and companions for the sake of Allah The Almighty for the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam, said:“The best dinars which a man can spend are a dinar which he spends on his children, a dinar which he spends on his riding beast for the sake of Allah, and a dinar which he spends on his companions for the sake of Allah The Almighty.” [At-Tayaalisi; Al-Albaani: Saheeh]
Doing good deeds towards your relatives is in no way limited to charity as some may believe. Rather, it includes various aspects of life. The best action one can do for his relatives is calling them (to Allah The Almighty), giving them sincere advice and teaching them beneficial knowledge of the worldly life and the Hereafter. This is because religious texts have enjoined preferring and giving them precedence over others.
In conclusion:
This is a good transaction with your Lord with which you can receive the reward twice as long as the buyer in this transaction is your Lord The Almighty. Be certain that it will be profitable for you. You may, moreover, recite the saying of Allah The Almighty (which means): {Indeed, those who recite the Book of Allah and establish prayer and spend [in His cause] out of what We have provided them, secretly and publicly, [can] expect a profit that will never perish - that He may give them in full their rewards and increase for them of His bounty. Indeed, He is Forgiving and Appreciative.} [Qur'an 35:29-30]
So, hasten to take part in it and spend in charity. Mujaahid, may Allah have mercy upon him, said:“O Son of Adam! It is the most appropriate place in which you can put your efforts and earnings. Do not spend on so and so and leave your relatives and your kin.” [Ad-Durr Al-Manthoor]

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