The month of Rajab


The Spirit Of Islam

Mufti Taqi Usmani

RAJAB is the seventh month in the Islamic lunar calendar. This month was regarded as one of the sacred months in which battles were prohibited in the days of the Holy Prophet (PBUH). It is also a prelude to the month of Ramazan, because Ramazan follows it after the intervening month of Shaban. Therefore, when the Holy Prophet (PBUH) sighted the moon of Rajab, he used to pray to Allah in the following words: “O Allah, make the months of Rajab and Shaban blessed for us, and let us reach month of Ramazan (ie prolong our life up to Ramazan, so that we may benefit from its merits and blessings).”
Yet no specific way of worship has been prescribed by the Shari’ah in this month. However, some people have invented some special rituals or practices in this month, which are not supported by reliable resources of the Shari’ah or are based on some unauthentic traditions. It is generally believed that the great event of Miraj (ascension of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) to the heavens) took place in the night of 27th of Rajab. Therefore, some people celebrate the night as “Lailatul- Miraj” (the night of ascension to heavens).
Indeed, the event of mi’raj was one of the most remarkable episodes in the life of our beloved Holy Prophet (PBUH). He was called by Almighty Allah. He travelled from Makkah to Baitul-Maqdis and from there he ascended the heavens through the miraculous power of Allah. He was honoured with a direct contact with his Creator at a place where even the angels had no access. This was the unique honour conferred by Allah to the Holy Prophet (PBUH) alone. It was the climax of the spiritual progress, which is not attained by anybody except him. No doubt the night in which he was blessed with this unparalleled honour was one of the greatest nights in the history of this world.
But, Islam has its own principles with regard to the historic and religious events. Its approach about observing festivals and celebrating days and nights is totally different from the approach of other religions. The Holy Qur’an and the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) did not prescribe any festival or any celebration to commemorate an event from the past, however remarkable it might have been. Instead, Islam has prescribed two annual celebrations only. One is Eid-ul-Fitr and the other is Eid ul-Azha. Both of these festivals have been fixed at a date on which the Muslims accomplish a great ibadat (worship) every year. Eid-ul-Fitr has been prescribed after the fasts of Ramazan, while Eid-ul-Azha has been fixed when the Muslims perform the Hajj annually. None of these two Eids is designed to commemorate a particular event of the past which has happened in these dates. Instead, the practical life of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) must be remembered every day in our life by observing Prophet’s teachings and following great examples He set for us.
Shariah has not prescribed any specific way to observe the month of Rajab or to perform a specific mode of worship or a ritual in any one of its dates. However, being a prologue to the month of Ramazan, it should be availed of for preparing oneself for Ramazan and one should pray Allah to make him reach the blessed month and to benefit from its unique merits.
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