Alhamdulillah, it is the Greatness of Allah, Subhanahu Wa Taala (the Exalted) who has honored the Muslims with sacred days and sanctified nights throughout the Islamic year. Just about two months after Ramadan, the Holiest month, Allah SWT has chosen for us the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah, that are highly blessed and paramount days of the year. The significance of these first days of Dhul Hijjah, is emphasized by our beloved Prophet, Mohammad, Sallalahu Alaihi Wassallama (SAW): "No good deeds done on other days are superior to those done on these (first ten days of Dhul Hijjah)." Then some companions of the Prophet said, "Not even Jihad?" He replied, "Not even Jihad, except that of a man who does it by putting himself and his property in danger (for Allah's sake) and does not return with any of those things." (Bukhari)

Alhamdulillah, Allah, SWT continually showers upon us with His Blessings day and night all our lives without any end to it. Are we obligated to do anything in return? Yes, we do! We need to thank Him deeply and profoundly.

The ten best blessed days of Dhul Hijjah are upon us. During these days, the first and the foremost best deed is to perform Hajj (Pilgrimage) to Mecca and its suburbs – Mina, Mazhdalifah, and Arafat. The Hajj is an obligation upon every able and capable Muslim and Muslimah. The sunnah of the Prophets Ibrahim & Ismael, may peace and blessings be upon both, that was revived and prescribed by the Prophet Mohammad, SAW is followed during the Hajj. Upon completion of Hajj one receives the greater blessings in terms of complete forgiveness from all sins by Allah, SWT.

The second-best and highly sanctified deed, for those who cannot perform the Pilgrimage to Mecca is to fast first nine days. And if it is not possible then at least fast the ninth day, the Day of Arafat (the actual day of Hajj). The Prophet, SAW said: “Anyone who fasts for one day for Allah’s pleasure, Allah will keep his face away from the (Hell) fire for (a distance covered by a journey of) seventy years.” (Bukhari, Muslim). Additionally, he, SAW emphasized about the fast on the ninth day of Dhul-Hijjah saying: “Fasting the Day of ‘Arafat (ninth Dhul-Hijjah) is an expiation for (all the sins of) the previous year and expiation for (all the sins of) the coming year.” (Muslim)

Supplement the nine days of fasting with recitation of the following Tasbihaat as much and as often as possible: Allahu Akbar Allahu Akbar La ilaha illallah Wa Allahu Akbar Allahu Akbar Walil Lahil Hamd. The Prophet, SAW said: “There are no days on which good deeds are greater or more beloved to Allah than on these ten days, so recite much Tahleel (saying Laa ilaaha ill-Allah), Takbeer (saying Allahu Akbar) and Tahmeed (saying Alhamdu Lillaah).”

Additionally, recite al-Quran daily, repent to Allah SWT often, give charity, and thank Allah SWT regularly. Read the Words of Allah SWT, al-Quran, understand its meaning and guidance; implement in your life and support its enactment in the life of your family, and community members. Likewise, take the message to community-at-large. The continual relationship with the Quran enhances the wisdom and happiness. This then, leads to guidance and success in this life and the Hereafter.

Another deed that pleases Allah, SWT much is to return to Him after committing sins and mistakes. One should feel guilty for own missteps and blunders; commit to Allah, SWT to not ever return to them, and then seek His forgiveness sincerely. Ensure that this good deed is done on every such occasion but during these ten days to reap extra benefits. Allah, SWT says, “But as for him who repented, believed and did righteous deeds, then he will be among those who are successful.” (Quran: Al-Qasas, 28:67)

Thanking Allah, SWT deeply, sincerely, and continuously brings His pleasure closer and closer. It is He, SWT who has created us, sustains us through every moment of our lives, then He, SWT will not only Judge us on the Day of Judgement but decide our fate beyond that day. Is it not enough for us to understand and thank Him? Thank Him as much as you can during these best days of Dhul Hijjah.

Alhamdulillah, there is much to be gained in these coming days. Hasten to do good deeds and appreciate this blessing and make the most of it. “And worship your Lord until there comes unto you the certainty (death).” (Qur’an: Al-Hijr, 15:99)

The Alim Foundation Inc., NMS, July 16, 2020

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