Devotional Practice: Month of Dhu al-Hijjah

December 12, 2007 at 5:17 am

Devotional Practice: Month Dhu al-Hijjah
By Imam Zaid Shakir

The first ten days of Dhul-Hijja are blessed days,
which we frequently neglect. The Noble Prophet, Peace
and Blessings of God be upon him, said, “There are no
days in which righteous deeds done during them are
more beloved to God than these days,” referring to the
first ten days of Dhul-Hijja.

During these blessed days we should try to exert
ourselves in worship, for the ‘Ulama’ mention that the
virtue of these days surpass even the virtue of the
days of Ramadan. Among the indications of the
distinction of these days is the special mention made
of them as a group or individually in both the Qur’an
and the Sunnah. In the Qur’an, God says, “I swear by
the Dawn, the Ten Nights, the Even and the Odd.”

Bearing these and many other virtues of these days in
mind, we should be especially diligent in increasing
our righteous acts during them. The following acts are
especially recommended:

1. We should try to fast as many of the first nine
days as possible. We should make an extra effort to
fast the Day of ‘Arafah. It is related in Sahih Muslim
that the Noble Prophet, Peace and Blessings of God be
upon him, said, “I anticipate that Fasting the Day of
‘Arafah will atone for the sins of the previous and
coming year.”

2. We should carefully monitor our speech, what we
listen to, and what we allow our gaze to fall on
during these days, again, especially on the Day of
‘Arafah. The Noble Prophet, Peace and Blessings of God
be upon him, said, “[Concerning] the Day of ‘Arafah,
whoever controls his hearing, gaze, and speech on that
day, he will be forgiven.”

3. We should be excessive in repeating the declaration
of Tawhid, with special emphasis on the phrase, “La
ilaha ilallah, Wahdahu La Sharika lah, Lahul Mulk, wa
lahul Hamd, biyadihi Khayr, wa Huwa ‘ala kulli Shayin
Qadir: There is no God but Allah. He is alone without
partners. His is the dominion, and unto Him is all
praise. With Him is all good, and He over all things
has power.” Imam Tirmidhi relates that this was the
supplication the Prophet, Peace and Blessings of God
be upon him, repeated more than any other on the Day
of ‘Arafah.

4. We should pray for forgiveness and liberation from
the Hellfire during these days, especially the Day of
‘Arafah. Imam ‘Ali, May God be pleased with him,
related, “God liberates people from the Hellfire
everyday. And there is no day when more people are
liberated from the Hellfire than the Day of ‘Arafah.”

During this blessed season, let us all strive to renew
our commitment to our faith. May each year when these
blessed days return find you all in the very best of
states. May your life be dominated by the remembrance
of God. In all that we do, May He be glorified.