Your Guide to Ramadan 2019

Are you ready to reap the blessings and Baraka of Ramadan? Here’s a checklist of ‘to do’s to help you make the most of every last hour of the holy month.

Ramadan is the month of blessings, in which the reward for our good deeds and our Sadaqah are multiplied exponentially, and our sins are forgiven. According to the hadith, related by Ibn Abbas (ra):

The Messenger of Allah, (ﷺ) was the most generous of people and he was even more generous in Ramadan […] -Bukhari

As Muslims, we strive to emulate the Prophet (ﷺ) in every aspect of our lives. The month of ramadan is an even better time to do this, since performing good deeds is made easier for the believer, and the reward for them is doubled. In another hadith, The Prophet (ﷺ) said:

“When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of the heaven are opened and the gates of Hell are closed and the devils are chained.” -Bukhari 

Our Guide to Ramadan 2019 is packed with useful tips, supplications and practices, based on the Holy Quran and Sunnah. Read on to reap the blessings of this month to the fullest.

Read the Qur’an

Not everyone can perform a khatam –complete reading of the Qur’an in the month of Ramadan. But even us slow Arabic readers can dedicate a couple of hours each night to read more than usual. If you can’t read in Arabic, read the transliteration and translation. Download it onto your smart phone or mp3 player, and listen to it on your commute to work. The Prophet () said:

“The fast and the Qur’an are two intercessors for the servant of Allah on the Day of Resurrection. The fast will say: ‘O Lord, I prevented him from his food and desires during the day. Let me intercede for him.’ The Qur’an will say: ‘I prevented him from sleeping at night. Let me intercede for him.’ And their intercession will be accepted.” –Ahmad  

Recite Salawat

Salawat is the invocation of peace and blessings upon the Prophet Muhammad (). There are numerous hadith about the benefits of reciting Salawat, while its importance is highlighted in the Holy Qur’an as follows:

Verily, God and His angels bless the Prophet: [hence,] O you who have attained to faith, bless him and give yourselves up [to his guidance] in utter self-surrender! –Holy Qur’an 33:56

Give Charity and Forgive Others

Ramadan is the month of generosity and giving –both of which come in many forms. The rewards for giving charity in the form of Sadaqah, are multiplied exponentially in this month. Meanwhile, forgiving your brother/sister and humbling yourself to extend the olive branch of reconciliation is as much an act of generosity as giving to charity. In the hadith, the Prophet () said:

“Charity does not decrease wealth, no one forgives another except that Allah increases his honor, and no one humbles himself for the sake of Allah except that Allah raises his status.” –Sahih Muslim

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Feed the Fasting

During Ramadan, don’t just invite the usual suspects for Iftar. Why not extend an invitation to someone you don’t know, like a new neighbour perhaps, or a new face at your local mosque? The Prophet () said:

“Whoever feeds a person breaking his fast will earn the same reward as him without anything being lessened from the reward of the fasting person.” – Sunan al-Tirmidhī

Another way to spread the benefits feeding others is by joining IKCA’s #BigIftar challenge. Organise a fundraising Iftar for your friends and family, and raise enough to share your food with cancer patients at Shaukat Khanum Hospital. Find out more

Give Sadaqah Jariya

This is lasting charity, from which the giver will continue to reap blessings and rewards even after he/she has passed away. There a various forms of Sadaqah Jariya, but it always involves an act of charity which will benefit beneficiaries for years and years. Educating a child; installing a well; building place that provides an ongoing public service like a mosque, school or hospital are forms of Sadaqah Jariya. The Prophet () said:

“When a man passes away, his good deeds will also come to an end except for three: Sadaqah Jariyah (ceaseless charity); a knowledge which is beneficial, or a virtuous descendant who prays for him (for the deceased)” –Sahih Muslim

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Give Zakat

Did you know that Muslim communities in the past paid their zakat before Ramadan so that the poor could spend the holy month with more ease and less to worry about? The Arabic word ‘zakat’ literally means ‘to cleanse’ or ‘that which purifies.’ The third pillar of Islam, zakat is obligatory charity for the poor. It is mandatory to all Muslims whose income and/or savings are above a set minimum amount (nisab). The Prophet () said:

“Invite the people to testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and I am Allah’s Messenger (), and if they obey you to do so, then teach them that Allah has enjoined on them five prayers in every day and night (in twenty-four hours), and if they obey you to do so, then teach them that Allah has made it obligatory for them to pay the Zakat from their property and it is to be taken from the wealthy among them and given to the poor.” –Sahih Bukhari

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Ask Forgiveness

Ramadan is a month of blessings, when the reward for our good deeds is multiplied by 70 and our sins are forgiven. It is the best time in the Islamic calendar to seek forgiveness. According to a hadith reported by Aisha (ra) the Prophet Muhammad () advised her to pray as follows on the Night of Decree (Laylat al-Qadr) in Ramadan:

Allahumma innaka `Afuwwun TuHibbul `Afwa Fa`fu `Annii.

“O Allah, you are pardoning and generous. You love to forgive, so forgive me.” –Sunan al-Tirmidhī

Give Fidyah

Fidyah is for people who have a valid reason for not fasting, (like illness, pregnancy or old-age). It involves paying to provide a person’s daily sustenance, for every fast that they miss.

Fast a certain number of days. So whoever among you is ill or on a journey [during them] – then an equal number of days [are to be made up]. And upon those who are able [to fast, but with hardship] – a ransom [as substitute] of feeding a poor person [each day]. –Holy Qur’an 2:184

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Make the Most of the Last 10 Days

One of the Prophet Muhammad’s () practices was to observe Itikaf on the last ten days of Ramadan. Though this may not be possible for everyone, we all know that the last ten days of Ramadan are the days to really up our game,  strive harder for worship, and encourage our family members to do the same. As narrated in the hadith:

“’A’isha (ra) reported that when the last ten nights began Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) kept awake at night (for prayer and devotion), wakened his family, and prepared himself to observe prayer (with more vigour).” –Sahih Muslim

Do your Night Prayers

Also known as Tahajjud – the voluntary Night Prayer is usually performed in the last third of the night, though its time extends between Isha and Fajr. There are numerous hadiths about the excellence of the Night Prayer, but performing it in the month of Ramadan comes with greater blessings. The Prophet () said:

“Whoever stands in the night prayer during Ramadan out of faith and
seeking his reward, then all of his previous sins will be forgiven.” –
Muslim; Sahih Bukhari

Give Fitrana

Zakat ul-fitr, also commonly known as ‘fitrana’, is the compulsory charity paid by every Muslim at the end of Ramadan. It is a way for Muslims to give thanks that they were able to complete the month of fasting. It is important that zakat fitrana reaches the poor in time for Eid. According to the Hadith, Ibn Umar (ra) reported:

“Allah’s Apostle made it incumbent on all the slave or free Muslims, male or female, to pay one Sa’ of dates or barley as Zakat ul-Fitr.” –Sahih Bukhari

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For over two decades, we’ve born witness to the healing power of your Zakat, through the will of Allah. Without it, Shaukat Khanum Hospital would not exist. Last year we were able to provide free cancer treatment to 75% of our patients through Zakat funds. Find out More

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