Yes, more Muharram articles to whet your appetite.
Here’s a nice one about Aashoora:
[Note: The addition about this being the day that the ark of Nuh (alaihissalam) settled on Mount Judi is not authentic.]
Praise be to Allaah,
‘Aashooraa’ in History
Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: “The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) came to Madeenah and saw the Jews fasting on the day of ‘Aashooraa’. He said, ‘What is this?’ They said, ‘This is a righteous day, it is the day when Allaah saved the Children of Israel from their enemies, so Moosa fasted on this day.’ He said, ‘We have more right to Moosa than you,’ so he fasted on that day and commanded [the Muslims] to fast on that day.” (Reported by al-Bukhaari, 1865).
“This is a righteous day” – in a report narrated by Muslim, [the Jews said:] “This is a great day, on which Allaah saved Moosa and his people, and drowned Pharaoh and his people.”
“Moosa fasted on this day” – a report narrated by Muslim adds: “… in thanksgiving to Allaah, so we fast on this day.”
According to a report narrated by al-Bukhaari: “… so we fast on this day to venerate it.”
A version narrated by Imaam Ahmad adds: “This is the day on which the Ark settled on Mount Joodi, so Nooh fasted this day in thanksgiving.”
“and commanded [the Muslims] to fast on that day” – according to another report also narrated by al-Bukhaari: “He said to his Companions: ‘You have more right to Moosa than they do, so fast on that day.”
The practice of fasting on ‘Aashooraa’ was known even in the days of Jaahiliyyah, before the Prophet’s mission. It was reported that ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) said: “The people of Jaahiliyyah used to fast on that day…”
Al-Qurtubi said: “Perhaps Quraysh used to fast on that day on the basis of some past law, such as that of Ibraaheem, upon whom be peace.”
What is the first month of the Islamic New Year?
Everyone will probably say “Muharram” (I mean, it’s in the title!) which is the right answer.
Okay, next question: Who made it the first month of the Islamic New Year?
Hmmm….I can almost hear the deafening silence.
Okay, I’m not giving the answer away. To know more about this issue (and about the virtues of Muharram, of course), please read the following article:
Virtues of the Month of Muharram by Shaikh Abdullah As-Salloom
There’s also another article that you might want to read as well:
The Month of Muharram by Shaikh Ibn Uthaimeen (rahimahullah)
Aashoora is the 10th of Muharram and is a special day.
By “special day”, I mean that it has some historical significance (Musa (alaihissalam). not Karbala) and there are some legislated deeds to be done therein (fasting, not whipping yourself and your little children like some highly deviant sects do, may Allah save us from such misguidance).
Here’s a lecture that gives us an insight into Aashoora:
Day of Aashoora – Lessons, Fasting and Merits by Dr. Saleh As-Saleh (rahimahullah) (Download):
Yes, Ramadan was our 2nd chance and the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah was the 3rd.
Now, we have yet another chance: Muharram.
You might wonder why I keep pointing to specific months as being 3rd or 4th chances when, in reality, a person can make a fresh start from…NOW.
Yes, that’s true. However, the first 10 days of Dhul Hijjah and Muharram are what I call mini-goals and iman-boosting opportunities, because of their many virtues.
It is very difficult for a person to think about working hard for a lifetime. So we need to shorten that to working hard until the end of Ramadan, so that we can take it year by year. However, as Ramadan is still quite far away, we need to work towards another goal that is close by in order to keep ourselves motivated.
That’s what I’ve noticed about most people. They need deadlines. I’m like that too. I need a real tangible deadline so that I can get the adrenaline going.
So, let’s give ourselves yet another deadline to improve: Muharram.
And we’ll just keep doing this until Ramadan comes, insha-Allah.
Remember: The only way to actually “remember” Ramadan is to become our “Ramadan selves” and better in all the months.
PS. Question to all of you: Are you still asking Allah to accept your Ramadan? If not, then why not? The early generations did this for 6 months after Ramadan!
Is it Dhul Hijjah, you ask?
Nope. It’s Muharram.
And it’s coming up in less than two weeks.
As always, here’s a nice article to get us warmed up:
The Virtues of Allah’s sacred month of Muharram
Praise be to Allaah,
the Lord of the Worlds, and peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, the Seal of the Prophets and Chief of the Messengers, and upon all his family and companions.
Allah’s sacred month of Muharram is a blessed and important month. It is the first month of the Hijri calendar and is one of the four sacred months concerning which Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Verily, the number of months with Allaah is twelve months (in a year), so it was ordained by Allaah on the Day when He created the heavens and the earth; of them, four are sacred. That is the right religion, so wrong not yourselves therein…” [al-Tawbah 9:36]
Abu Bakrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The year is twelve months of which four are sacred, the three consecutive months of Dhu’l-Qa’dah, Dhu’l-Hijjah and Muharram, and Rajab Mudar which comes between Jumaada and Sha’baan.” (Reported by al-Bukhaari, 2958).
It seems people have started to prepare for Ramadan – with 15 more days to go.
Alright, here’s another lecture on how to prepare for Ramadan
Preparing for Ramadan by Yasir Qadhi (Download)
What I liked about the lecture: He made some points that I haven’t heard mentioned elsewhere.
What I did not like: He messed up on two points*. But that’s okay. I think he was jet lagged (he sounds tired in the lecture). And everyone has an off-day.
[* This is what I recall. If I made a mistake, please let me know.]
Point # 1: He states that Ramadan is one of the four sacred months.
No, it isn’t. Ramadan is the greatest month of the year (hey, that sounds like a great title for a website) but it is NOT one of the four sacred months. Proof? Here you go:
Narrated Abu Bakra: The Prophet said (salallahu alaihi wasallam): “The division of time has turned to its original form which was current when Allah created the Heavens and the Earths. The year is of twelve months, out of which four months are sacred: Three are in succession Dhul-Qa’ da, Dhul-Hijja and Muharram, and (the fourth is) Rajab of (the tribe of) Mudar which comes between Jumadi-ath-Thaniyah and Shaban.” [Saheeh Al-Bukhari, Volume No. 4, Hadeeth No. 419]