بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
So, it seems that most of us are in for a (full?) lunar eclipse tonight.
So, what do we do? Take out the binoculars and watch the eclipse whilst munching on Pringles?
No, this is what the people who disbelieve in Allah and the Last Day do, so we shouldn’t follow them in their misguidance.
The people who believe in Allah and the Last Day should follow the best guidance i.e that of the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam).
What did he do? Well, he prayed two really long rakaahs, each rakaah containing TWO really long rukoos. Here’s why.
How do we do it? Here’s how. Note: It says “as long as Surah Al-Baqarah” but it really depends on the length of the eclipse as Ibn Taimiyyah (rahimahullah) said.
[What if you don’t know many surahs? Well, firstly, try to pray even if you can’t make it a long prayer. A short eclipse prayer is better than no prayer. Also, perhaps you could carry a mushaf and recite from it? This fatwa (in Arabic) says it’s allowed.]
It’s not for everyone, just for those who actually have an eclipse in their land.
[Note to my fellow UAE residents: It seems that it starts tonight at 10:22pm to 2:02am, insha-Allah. I would advise peeping out of the windows to confirm that the eclipse has started before praying.]
What else can you do? Well, the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) ordered us to do dua (supplication), dhikr (remembrance of Allah), do takbeer (say Allahu Akbar), istighfar (seek forgiveness), give charity and seek refuge in the punishment of the grave. Proof? I’m too tired to post each hadeeth but all of them can be found in the Chapter of Eclipses in Sahih Al-Bukhari which you can read here.
What if you read this after the eclipse has already occured?
Well, you should remember:
1) That solar and lunar eclipses do happen quite a bit so make sure that you don’t miss it the next time (if you’re alive, of course).
2) Apart from the eclipse prayer, all the other things should be done on a regular basis not just when there is an eclipse.
3) Remember the point of the eclipse: Allah wants to frighten His slaves. Why? For us to be aware of His great power and so that we can turn back to Him in repentance.
So, remember the purpose and act accordingly.
4) Remember that we need to prepare for some of these occasions beforehand so we need to seek knowledge about our religion and inform others about these events beforehand, not just at the last minute.
For example, if we study about Islam, we’ll realise that the ten best days are the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah. Many people are unaware of this so we need to tell them and we need to tell them at least a week in advance so that they will be prepared for it.
To all those who read this before or during the eclipse, try to pray and do the above mentioned things. We don’t know if we’ll get another chance to apply this sunnah.
Yes, it’s Dhul Hijjah (at least for those of us who follow Saudia Arabia).
Tomorrow (Nov. 7th) is the first day of fasting (for those who wish to do so). Arafah will be on Monday, insha-Allah.
Insha-Allah, I’ll be taking a break from this blog for about two weeks.
Why? Because I seriously need to take advantage of these 10 days, that’s why.
My final bit of advice: Start increasing your ibaadah from NOW, and do what you can and just keep going on. Pretend that you’re the Energiser Bunny. Whatever works…
May Allah accept our deeds. Ameen.
Yes, because it’s about time.
If we don’t wake up soon, then when are we planning to do so? After death?
The best 10 days are almost here. Let’s not waste them because we’re too busy sleep walking through life and are heedless of the hereafter.
[What is “takbeer”? It means saying Allahu Akbar i.e it means to magnify Allah.]
Before I link to the articles, let me a present a simplified explanation of this topic:
The first 13 days of Dhul Hijjah have certain virtues, as does the month itself.
The 8th of Dhul Hijjah is called the Day of Tarwiyah (the rites of Hajj begin on this day).
The 9th is the Day of Arafah.
The 10th is the Day of Eid or the Day of Nahr (Sacrifice).
The 11th-13th are known as the Days of Tashreeq.
So, one should do lots of takbeer (the format is mentioned below) during these 13 days.
When do you do the takbeer?
1. Any time.
Just do as much as you can. This is for all 13 days.
2. In addition to being able to do it at any time, you should also do it after the obligatory prayers (after the adhkar that is recited).
This is for the 9th-13th of Dhul Hijjah only, not for the first 8 days. [Also, this is for those who are not doing Hajj.]
A word of advice: The last 4 days are the days that everyone is celebrating Eid, visiting family, etc. It’s easy to forget which is precisely why we should make every effort possible to remember.
Here are a few articles that provide more information:
Yes, some more….
So, here we go:
1. The Blessed Days of Dhul Hijjah by Muhammad Al-Jibaaly
2. The Three Days of Tashreeq by Muhammad Al-Jibaaly
The Days of Tashreeq are the 11th, 12th and 13th of Dhul Hijjah.
3. Virtues of and Deeds Legislated in the First Ten Days of Dhul Hijjah by Shaikh ibn Jibreen (rahimahullah)
4. Virtues of the Ten Days of Dhul Hijjah by Shaikh Muhammad Salih Al-Munajjid
5. The Final Research into the Issue of Slaughtering on the Days of Tashreeq by Shaikh Muhammad Raees Nadwee
6. The Day of Arafah Falling on a Friday by Dr. Saleh As-Saleh (rahimahullah)
Yes, Ramadan was our second chance (remember?) and Dhul Hijjah is our third.
So, why should we stick to “remembering” (i.e. dreaming about) Ramadan? Why don’t we just take advantage of the ten best days* that are coming up in order to give ourselves another little Ramadan?
[*Actually, even the days of Tashreeq (11th-13th) have some virtues so we shouldn’t forget about them. Sadly, most people do exactly that because they’re too busy partying their brains out because it’s Eid.]
What should we do?
1) Aim for a fresh start (don’t wait for Dhul Hijjah, do it NOW). Seek Allah’s Forgiveness and ask Him to make things easy for you.
2) Read about the virtues of Dhul Hijjah and write down all the specific deeds that can be done during this time (e.g. fasting, takbeer, etc).
[Note: We need to read about Eid Al-Adha and the days of Tashreeq too as they are a religious celebration, not a 4 day party.]
Rather than waiting for next Ramadan to come, we need to pretend that it is already here and that we are in the last ten days (hey, there’s even an Eid after them!).
3) Bring out all those Ramadan Resolutions papers out from the bottom of your drawers. Oh yes.
However, now we’re going to call this “Dhul Hijjah resolutions”.
Look over those resolutions and then write down your goals for these 10 days.
4) Write down all the good things that you did in Ramadan and then aim to do them in Dhul Hijjah as well.
5) Write down where (and why) you messed up in Ramadan and take steps to rectify that in Dhul Hijjah.
6) Try to get the Eid shopping done before these 10 days.
7) Encourage everybody to participate in Dhul Hijjah.
See, one of the great things about Ramadan is that everybody is trying to be good, so it’s much easier for us to be good.
8) Try to prepare a checklist for Dhul Hijjah (we have so many Ramadan checklists but not even one Dhul Hijjah checklist!).
It’s always easier to remember things when you have a checklist (we’re not elephants, remember?)
[Note: To the menstruating women, remember that even though you can’t pray or fast, you can still do a lot.]
9) Try to prepare a dua list as well (remember the wonderful day of Arafah?)
10) Remember that ultimately the purpose of Ramadan is the same as Dhul Hijjah: to get closer to Allah.
Therefore, we should once again aim to continue the good deeds even after Dhul Hijjah. If we just intend them for Dhul Hijjah and don’t want to bother doing them after that, it means we have a problem with our sincerity.
So, let’s get going, insha-Allah. We don’t want to waste our third chance, would we?
Yes, the best days of the year are about a week away.
Are we ready? Or are we going to let another opportunity slip through our hands?
We’ll be ready, insha-Allah.
So, here’s another lecture on the best days so we can continue to be motivated:
Merits of the First 10 Days of Dhul Hijjah by Mutasim Al-Hameedee (Download)
Here’s a lecture to help get you excited about The Best Days of The Year:
It’s true, you know.
Best Days of the Year = The First Ten Days of Dhul Hijjah.
And we’re still in Dhul Qaaidah.
[Oh, you thought that I meant something else? Sorry.]
So, what do we do? Well, how about if we start preparing for it? You know, so that we can squeeze these 10 days for all they are worth?
See, these 10 days are almost like a mini-Ramadan (talk about recovering Ramadan, huh?). The only reason that we don’t think that way is because they’re not as heavily advertised as Ramadan.
What’s the first thing to do? Well, we need to read about the virtues of these great days, of course.
Here’s a really nice treatise on this matter that discusses their virtues as well as the recommended deeds to be done during them (no, Hajj is not the only recommended deed that can be done in them):