What is Muharram?
The blessed month of Muharram is the first month of the Hijri calendar and is one of the four sacred months concerning which Allah Almighty says
Indeed, the number of months with Allah is twelve [lunar] months in the register of Allah [from] the day He created the heavens and the earth; of these, four are sacred. That is the correct religion, so do not wrong yourselves during them…} [Surah At-Tawbah]
Ibn Abbaas said that this phrase (so do not wrong yourselves during them… ) referred to all the months, then these four were singled out and made sacred, so that sin in these months is more serious and good deeds bring a greater reward.
Just like when it’s the time for a sale or let’s take into account the latest launch of Apple’s iPhone, people went absolutely crazy. Standing in line for hours at an end, spending enough money on a single mobile that could feed so many poor families as a whole. Now we don’t say that this is wrong and we shouldn’t enjoy the blessings that Allah has bestowed us with.
The point that I am trying to get across here is that this month of Muharram is a blessing from Allah to us. It is in this month that we should rake in as many rewards as we can. Take full advantage of Allah’s rewards and mercy which get doubled and tripled by His will in this blessed month. When we increase the degree of our worship Allah will increase his “promotions” for us. No, this is one plus I can confidently say that we won’t be duped by the Before-After sale scam. If we go in this month wanting to please Allah, the rewards will be magnified to numbers we can only imagine. This right here is one promotional offer we cannot afford to miss out. The awesome part being if you tell others about this promotion and they come to it, then whatever good they do, you also get a reward for it as if you did it yourself. I mean how cool is that? At the same time we must avoid sinning also, because the degree of punishment increases or intensifies as well.
We see the wisdom of Allah by selecting these months in the words of Al-Izz ibn Abdus-Salaam who said that Allah makes certain times and placed sacred or blessed in order to encourage his servants for righteous deeds and bestow a greater reward for them. [Qawaa’id Al-Ahkaam]. Such is our Rabb, The Most Merciful, The Most High.
So What Can We Do?
The Messenger of Allah, صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم said, “The best of fasting after Ramadan is fasting Allah’s month of Muharram.” [Muslim]
Fasting is one of those acts which are very dear to Allah. This is an act about which Allah doesn’t specify any reward but just says that he will take care of it as it is done solely for him We can let our imagination run amok and still fail to fathom just how brilliantly Allah will bless the one who fasts to please Allah.
- Give Charity
Giving charity is one of the best things we can do. As we know everything we do is being multiplied by Allah in our accounts. So why pass on such an offer. This is an investment which will surely reap tons and tons of good. So go ahead, don’t hold back and give charity like mad.
We already know how by doing Dhikr we get so many rewards. By doing dhikr in this month just makes the math a lot more complicated and the rewards way more easier and abundant. Just keep in mind the multiplication part and you will be boosted to do it. This has got to be the easiest way to earn rewards. We can literally do it anywhere and everywhere. Let’s have a quick look at some amazing deals.
“SubhanAllah” x 100 times = 1000 Rewards Added/1000 sins removed [Muslim]
“SubhanAllahilAzim WabiHamdihi” = A date palm is planted for him/her in Paradise [Tirmidhi] (So much for farmville huh?)
“SubhanAllaahiWabiHamdihi” x 100 = Sins forgiven even if they were like the foam in the sea. [Bukhari]
“Laa ilaaha illallaah wahdahuu laa shareekalahu, lahu-l-mulk wa lahu-l-hamd wa huwa ‘alaa kulli shai’in qadeer,” = Reward as given for manumitting ten slaves + 100 Good Deeds + 100 Sins Deducted + Shield for him from Satan on that day till night [Bukhari]
- Visit The Sick/Orphans
This will be a huge Iman booster and will make you realize and thank Allah for his blessings on you.
- Uphold Family Ties
Might be tough for some but hey you get rewarded for talking to that uncle so why not. Take this time to be very good and dutiful to your parents and ask them to make dua for you. Allah loves those who are dutiful to their parents.
While you are out there meeting them might as well smile. Just a small smile from you could liven up the day of your brother and change their mood for the better. Plus with all the stuff happening around us we need a lot more smiles.
- Reading the Quran
Mathematically speaking from a rewards perspective, reading the Quran is the best thing we can do. For every letter of a word in the Quran we get 10 rewards. Just imagine finishing the Quran and then Allah multiplies it for us out of his bounty. Get a calculator if you can’t calculate.
Verses: 6236 verses
Words: 77439 words
Letters: 320015 letters x 10 = 3200150
Try fulfilling as many Sunnah acts as possible. This is highly pleasing to Allah as we imitate and copy the acts done by our Prophet Muhammad صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم to please Allah.
The Day of Ashurah
Although the month of Muharram is a sanctified month as a whole, yet, the 10th day of Muharram is the most sacred among all its days. The day is named Ashurah. So what is so special about this day?
Ibn Abbas narrates, “The Prophet صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم came to Madinah and saw the Jews fasting on the day of Ashurha. He said, “What is this?” They said, “This is a righteous day, it is the day when Allah saved the Children of Israel from their enemies, so Musa fasted on this day” He said, “We have more right to Musa than you”, so he fasted on that day and commanded (the Muslims) to fast on that day.” [Al-Bukhari]
After this we see another narration from Ibn Abbaas who said, “I never saw the Messenger of Allah so keen to fast any day and give it priority over any other time than the day of ‘Ashurah’ and the month of Ramadan.” [Al-Bukhari]
The Prophet صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم said, “For fasting the day of Ashurah I hope that Allah will accept it as expiation for the past year.” [Muslim]
Things just seem to get better and better now doesn’t it. Till now our good deeds were getting multiplied. Allah being The Most Generous told us that fasting on this day would erase a WHOLE years worth of minor sins.
It is recommended to fast the ninth in addition to the tenth of Muharram to mark a difference from the Jews as we see narrated by Abdullaah ibn Abbaas who said, “When the Messenger of Allah,صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم fasted on Ashurah and commanded the Muslims to fast as well, they said, `O Messenger of Allah, it is a day that is venerated by the Jews and Christians.’ The Messenger of Allah صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم said, `If I live to see the next year, InshaAllah, we will fast on the ninth day too.’ But it so happened that the Messenger of Allah, صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم, passed away before the next year came.” [Muslim]
The Shia dampen the mood of the Blessed Month of Muharram and instead of celebrating the mercy of Allah, they take it as a month of mourning on the martyrdom of Hussain. The pages of Islamic History are filled with the blood of the martyrs. Should we begin to mourn the martyrdom of the sahabah alone, every other day would be a day of mourning.
Thus, to attribute the significance of Ashurah to the martyrdom of Hussain is baseless. In fact it was a blessing of Allah upon him that he was granted martyrdom is this blessed month. Therefore, the host of baseless customs with regard to his martyrdom must be discarded.
Being that start of the Hijri Calendar, people get a bit too excited and start celebrating it just like the others celebrate the New Year of the Gregorian Calendar. We need to calm down. like seriously. Instead of spamming social media we can spend this time actually multiplying our deeds like a good businessman and not fighting online wars if saying it is permissible.
Many of our brothers have fallen into superstition and bidah and attribute things to this month like bad luck, abstaining from marriage and what not. We should be aware of such things and try clarifying the matter and show them the love and mercy of Allah.
Know that this is the month in which Allah gave victory to Musa عليه السلام and his followers, despite the fact that they were vastly outnumbered, over the tyrant Pharaoh. Let us make constant and sincere dua from the heart that Allah elevates us like he elevated Musa عليه السلام and His People and not humiliate us any further and forgive us for being so weak in our duty towards him. We should be assured that while we are performing our prayers, fasting and rushing to perform all other types of righteous deeds that Allah will support us and that He will protect us. Whenever we are involved in an act of worship, Allah will love us due to this and will give a magnificent reward. This is because Allah only enables those whom He loves to perform righteous deeds and He only guides those who repent to Him.
May Allah accept this from us and multiply for us our good and divide our bad and replace it with even more good from his immense bounty.