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September 23, 2010

Article: Farewell Ramadan

by Umm Muawiyah

Assalamu Alaikum.

Another day, another article.

[The Learning Arabic Post will be continued tomorrow, insha-Allah.]

You know what makes me sad? Let me tell you.

This blog got a whole lot more visitors during Ramadan.

Am I sad because my blog traffic went down? No,  because ultimately  blog popularity is not at all important.

I’m sad because people seemed to have lost their enthusiasm for Ramadan a mere two weeks after it has ended. If this is what happens a few weeks after Ramadan, then what will happen after a few months??? Subhan Allah, it’s really sad.

What’s also sad is that we do things the wrong way around. We start advertising Ramadan a few weeks before it starts (rather than a few months ahead as it should be done) and then after the last day of Ramadan, we hear one or two lectures on steadfastness and that’s it.

The early generations prayer for Ramadan for 6 months in advance and prayed to get Ramadan 6 months after it ended.

[Actually, it should be 5.5 months if you do the math, but anyway…]

Here’s another Adios Ramadan article:

[This lecture seems to have been right at the end of one of the previous Ramadans, hence he mentions zakaatul fitr, etc.]

[Note: I has some issues formatting the article so it looks a bit strange in some places. My apologies.]

____________________________________________________________

http://www.alminbar.com/khutbaheng/2260.htm

Farewell Ramadan

Abdur Rahman As-Sudais

Summary

1)     The course of life.

2)     The anguish at the end of Ramadaan.

3)     Those who rejoice during Ramadaan.

4)     Acceptance of good deeds was the greatest concern of the salaf.

5)     Acts of worship performed during Ramadaan.

6)     The wonderful opportunity that Ramadaan represents

7)     Persistence on obedience.

8)     The effects of Ramadaan upon the soul.

9)     The painful predicament of our Ummah.

10)      Propaganda against Islaam and Muslims.

11)       Salvation is achieved through sound faith.

12)       Good deeds at the end of Ramadaan.

13)       Zakaatul-Fitr (charity paid at the conclusion of Ramadaan).

All praise is due to Allaah, Lord of all the worlds. May peace and blessings be upon the Messenger of Allaah, his household and companions.

Fellow Muslims! Fear Allaah, for that is the most trustworthy handhold that will never break. It is the best provision for the Abode of Peace and whoever possesses it will prosper and be saved from all evils.

Fellow Muslims! When one ponders over the history of nations, they will realise that all are in the process of constant change. This is the course destined for them by Allaah and nothing can change that.

Brothers in Islaam! Tell me, if an honourable guest visits you in your dwellings, showers you with goodness and loves you – which you reciprocate; then the time for his departure arrives, how are you going to bid him farewell and how are you going to feel? What separation is then greater and more emotional than that from the beloved guest of the Muslims, the blessed month of Ramadaan?

Ramadaan is the month righteousness and generosity, the month of forgiveness and liberation from Hell. It is all but gone now and nothing remains of it but a few moments. Yesterday, we were congratulating each other on the arrival of the month; today we are consoling one another over its departure and invoking Allaah to accept all our acts of worship.

In this noble month, many have done good deeds while others have done the opposite. These are going to testify for or against us on the Day of Reckoning. We do not know whether we are going to live to witness this glorious month again or not. Therefore, the fortunate Muslim during this month was the one who was able to perfect their acts of worship with sincerity and self-examination and end it with sincere repentance, for acts are judged according to their ends.

Brothers in faith! Our righteous predecessors used to exert maximum effort in perfecting their acts of worship and had grave concerns regarding their acceptance or rejection. ‘Ali Ibn Abi Taalib warned: “Have a greater concern for the acceptance of your deeds than you do for the amount of deeds you have performed. Do not you hear the saying of Allaah: ‘Indeed, Allaah accepts only from the righteous” (Al Maa’idah: 27).

Fudhaalah ibn ‘Ubayd said, “To know that Allaah has accepted a single act of righteousness from me would be dearer to me than this world all that it contains.” This is how our diligent predecessors were. O Allaah! Forgive our negligence and have mercy on us all.

May the peace of Allaah be upon the month of fasting and night prayers! May the peace of Allaah be upon the month of the Qur’aan and the remembrance of Allaah! It has now passed like the twinkling of an eye, yet while it was here it was an arena for those who race to do good deeds. Endeavour then, to utilise the remaining hours of it by performing good deeds for Ramadaan can never be substituted by any other any month. It is a month in which hearts are refined and sins are forgiven. It is a month of security and peace for the frightened. In this great month, many hands have been raised in supplication, many a tear has been shed and many a heart has been struck with the fear of Allaah. Allaah has showered His Mercy and Favour on many of His slaves in this month – particularly in the last ten days of it.

Brothers in faith! When will one who has not been forgiven his sins in this month ever be forgiven? When will the one whose supplication is rejected in Lailatul Qadr (the Night of Power) ever have it accepted? Ibn Rajab narrated that ‘Ali bin Abi Taalib used to proclaim in the last night of Ramadaan: ‘How I wish I knew those whose acts of worship have been accepted so that I could congratulate them; and how I wish I knew those whose acts of worship have been rejected so that I could commiserate with  them!’

Whose loss is greater than he who missed the blessings of Ramadaan? When will the one who did not reform himself during the month of Ramadaan ever do so? When will the one who was not cured from the sickness of ignorance and heedlessness in this month ever get cured?

O you who have committed great sins! These few remaining blessed days are an opportunity for you to repent, for whoever is librated from Hell has indeed won a great reward. As for you, who have been liberated from Hell by your Lord; do not shackle yourself in sins again. Is it rational to be moving closer to Hell after your Lord has pardoned you from it? Hasten therefore, dear brothers to do more good deeds, for some of you may not live to see the end of this year. Let the negligent ones among you seize the opportunity of this outgoing month in doing righteous deeds before it is too late. Let the heedless ones wake up and remember the terrible fate that awaits them; let them try to spend the rest of their lives doing good deeds.

Fellow Muslims! Let us look at our present condition in light of the effects Ramadaan had on us. Let us compare our condition at the start of Ramadaan to our condition now: Was the advent of Ramadaan something that made us become pious? Did it reform our actions and conduct? Did it unify our ranks against our enemies? Did it remove the hatred and rancour between us? Did it eliminate the evil deeds committed by our communities?

Brothers in faith! You have responded to the call of your Lord by fasting so respond to His command in all other matters and at all times. Humble your hearts for the remembrance of Allaah and be united in adherence to the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam so that the Muslim nation may be saved from calamities.

Brothers in Islaam! It is appropriate for us, while we are bidding farewell to this blessed month, to also try to bid farewell to all the calamities that have come to characterise the very essence of this nation. We must take serious steps to put an immediate end to the shedding of Muslim blood that is taking place in the blessed land of Palestine, Kashmir and Chechnya with impunity. Is it credible that the Muslims who are more than a billion in number can be so powerless in failing to protect the blood of their brothers and win them back their security and glory? Will the Muslims, while bidding farewell to Ramadaan, spurn the weakness and disunity that characterises their position on the issue of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) and the Al-Aqsaa Mosque – which are under the occupation of the Zionist devils?!

With regard to the Afghan issue, let the different Afghan groups bury their differences and lend their support to those who will govern them by the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam in order to protect the lives of the Muslims, the security of their land and the safety of the Afghan people. Let us do more to alleviate the pain and suffering of the Muslim minorities throughout the world. Let the leaders of the Muslim countries and their scholars champion this cause by exerting more efforts to exalt the religion of Allaah and help the cause of Islaam everywhere. This is especially important given the current global situation that is having adverse effects on the lives of the Muslims worldwide. Will the Muslims not put an end to the vicious campaign of the mass media against Islaam, the Muslims, and their lands – particularly the land of the two Holy Mosques? Has the time not come for the Muslims to make positive use of all the intellectual Da’wah capabilities and modern information technology at their disposal? Why don’t they use these to propagate the beauty of Islaam, its provision for human rights, its firm establishment upon the real concepts of truth, justice and peace and its abhorrence of violence and terrorism – especially in this time of vicious globalization and the so-called clash of civilizations? Will the meaning of terrorism be based on the whims of the Zionists who themselves are known terrorists, O world leaders?

O Ummah of Muhammad sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam! We are a nation known by our outstanding history of glory and strength. We must desert the degradation and humiliation which has now become our lot and assume our divine role by liberating the oppressed from error, misery, materialism and anarchy to the truth, justice and peace. In fact this is our duty, for this is from our obligation toward the correct faith, truth and piety. It is our duty to nurture the youth on moderation and lay down a strategy for elevating Islamic propagation and protecting the Muslim communities from the scourge of petty disagreements, – which have plagued us for ages.

It is time for the Muslims to realise that their present condition will never improve unless they hold on to the correct Islamic belief, in an age where atheism and paganism are the order of the day. I swear by Allaah! Degenerated nations and communities did not become so except as a result of their religious and moral decline and their abandonment of the divine teachings. Will the Muslims now recognise the value of their belief and unite on the path of their righteous predecessors in order to attain blessings for the whole world and its inhabitants?

Fellow Muslims! Bid farewell to the month of Ramadaan with good deeds that will testify in your favour on the day of Resurrection.

Brothers in faith! Allaah has prescribed for you at the end of Ramadaan a great deed with which you can make amends for your deficiencies within that month. By doing this, you can also gain immense rewards; Allaah says that which translates to: “He wants for you to complete the period and to magnify Allaah for that (to) which He has guided you; and perhaps you will be grateful.” (Al-Baqarah: 185).

Therefore, Allaah also prescribed the Zakaatul-Fitr [end of Ramadaan alms-giving] for you as a sign of gratitude to Him for facilitating fasting and night prayers for you, to purify you from any obscenity you may have uttered and as a feeding for the poor and the needy in order to promote the brotherhood and unity among the Muslims. The amount to be given is one Saa’ [approximately 3 kg.] of wheat, rice or any other staple food of the land. It is to be given by every Muslim, be they young, old, male or female. It is also rewardable if it is given on behalf of the unborn foetus. It is best given between the Fajr and ‘Eid prayers (on the day of ‘Eid) but there is no harm if it is given a day of two before ‘Eid.

The Sunnah is to give it out in foodstuff as it has been explicitly explained in the Hadeeth and in accordance with the practice of our righteous predecessors. So give this charity out, for Allaah has only asked you to give a negligible amount of the huge bounty that He has bestowed upon you.

Brothers in Islaam! Continue in your good deeds even after Ramadaan. Be constant in observing the five obligatory prayers and other acts of worship. Know that, among the signs of the acceptance of a good deed is to continue and be steadfast in performing that deed. Know also that it is only the evil people who know and worship Allaah in Ramadaan only.

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