Monday, 22 September 2008

Laylatul Qadr - Night of Decree

As I move into the last third of Ramadan, there are much blessing to be enjoyed in the last days. The last 10 days of Ramadan are very special, as this is where Laylatul Qadr - The Night of Decree (or Diginity/Power) is found.

This is the night when the Glorious Qur'an was first revealed (See Surah 97 -Surah Al Qadr).

In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
Lo! We revealed it on the Night of Predestination.
Ah, what will convey unto thee what the Night of Power is!
The Night of Power is better than a thousand months.
The angels and the Spirit descend therein, by the permission of their Lord, with all decrees.
(The night is) Peace until the rising of the dawn.

It is been reported by commentators of the Qur'an that on this night the whole Qur'an was transported from the preserved tablet (Lawh Al-Mahfiz) to the lowest heavens and from there the Qur'an was gradually revealed over the course of 23 years of Prohpet (SAW) life.

It is also stated in S97:3 that the virtue of this night is beyond description and it is better that a thousand months (f0r the mathematicians that is equiv. to 83 yrs and 4 mths).

There are various reports about the date of Laylatul Qadr, and there is no conclusive statement and thus the exact dat has been left undisclosed so that people will endeavor more to worship Allah (swt) throughout the 10 days rather that on one night.

In Ahadith (Buhkari and Muslim) related by Aishah (RA), we are specifically told by the Prophet "Seek Laylatul Qadr amongst the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan" i.e. 21st, 23rd, 25th, 27th and 29th.

Many scholars have siad that it is more likely to be on the 27th night of Ramadan but there again no conclusive authentication on this.

We as a family we have usually got together usually on the beginning of the 27th Night of Ramadan where we perform Salat and read important Surah from the Qur'an and perform Dhikr right through the night and especially more so to the last 1/3 of the night as the blessing then are so much more. Mum would make lots of food on this night, to provide us with energy and motivation. The odd cup of coffee also helps to keep one awake!

I have also try and perform more Ibadat on the odd nights as well as there is no guarantee that it will be on the 27th night. This is hard when one is working full time, but its only a small sacrifice, with 5 days of the 365 days of the year, really can't complain, May Allah make it easy for me and for others like myself.

Some people go as far as going into I'tikaf whereby they would go into their local Mosques for the last 10 days and shut themselves off from the Worldly matters and stay and eat there, to look out for Laylatul Qadr. I think that is brilliant, and Insh'Allah will make plans to do this in the next few years.

It has been commented by Aishah, the wife of the Prophet (SAW), that the prophet taught us to read this dua during Laylatul Qadr:

اَللَّهُمَّ اِنَّكَ عَفُوٌّ ، تُحِبُّ الْعَفْوَ فَاعْفُ عَنِّي
"Allahumma Innaka Afuwwun Tuhibbul Afwa Fa'fu Anni ( "O Allah! You are Most forgiving and You love to forgive sins, therefore forgive me") [Ahmad, Ibn Majah, and at-Tirmidhi].

Abu Hurairah quoted Allah’s Messenger as saying: “Whoever stands (in prayer) in Laylatul Qadr while nourishing his faith with self-evaluation, expecting reward from Allah, will have all of his previous sins forgiven.”
[Sahih al-Bukhari and Muslim].

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