Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Ramadan Special: Night of Reward of Lailatul Jaiza or Night Preceding Eid ul-Fitr
Eid al-Fitr is an Islamic festival. It takes place at the end of
the month of Holy Ramadan, a month of fasting when people
don't eat and drink during the day or we can say that month
of Holy Ramadan concludes with the celebration of Eid al-Fitr
and Eid-ul-Fitr is celebrated on the first day of the month of
Eid-ul-Fitr marks the end of the month of Holy Ramadan. We
say farewell to the blessed month, its beautiful days and its
fragrant nights. We leave the month of seeking nearness to
Ar-Rahmaan, the school of Imaan and an opportunity to
recharge our spiritual batteries.
Is Eid (festival) a sign of happiness that Holy Ramadan has finished?
As a matter of fact, it is quite the opposite! It is a celebration of
thanks to Allah (SWT) for giving us the chance and the strength
to carry out His commands in the blessed month of Holy Ramadan.
We are happy that we were able to fast and pray in Holy Ramadan
and have hopefully increased in Taqwa (God-consciousness).
Allah (SWT) says in Surah al-Baqarah, Ayat 185:
"You shall complete the number (of days) and you may glorify
God for His guiding you, and that you may be thankful."
Imam Ali (as) says: "Eid is for him whose fasts have been
accepted by Allah (SWT) and whose worship has been appreciated
by Allah (SWT). Everyday in which you do not disobey Allah (SWT)
is a day of Eid."
Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) and the Imams celebrated Eid and
encouraged all Muslims to do so. They told Muslims to wear good
clothes, put on perfume, and go to the mosque to recite the Eid
They also said to exchange Eid greetings, visit each other, and
generally pass the day joyfully. We should remember the poor by
taking out Fitrah before Eid, and visiting them and sending them
gifts if we can.
The day of Eid is meant for remembering Allah (SWT). Holy Prophet
Muhammad (saw) says: "Give beauty to your Eid by doing Takbir".
It is said that Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) himself used to come
out of his home on the day of Eid, reciting the Takbir and glorifying
Allah (SWT) in a loud voice.
After being absorbed in a month long exercise of vigorous worship
and spiritual enrichment, the Muslim Ummah stands on the threshold
The day of Eid is one to express sincere gratitude to Almighty Allah
(SWT) for His favours - gratitude for the opportunity to fast through
the day, stand in prayer at night, give charity and recite Holy Quran
abundantly. It is a day of celebration for the believers who have
executed their duties honorably.
Eid is the culmination of this spiritual empowerment and a festival
marking the accomplishment of all Muslims. However, it does not
signal the end of the mission. The good discipline developed in
Holy Ramadan must remain and be sustained. A true reflection of
our efforts in Holy Ramadan being accepted is continuity with
good actions post Holy Ramadan.
Whilst the day of Eid is a joyous occasion the night should be one of
contemplation and worship. It had been the practice of Holy Prophet
Muhammad (saw), that he would not sleep in the night preceding
the day of Eid-ul-Fitr. This night has been named in a Hadith as
the Night of Reward (Lailatul Jaiza).
Almighty Allah (SWT) bestows his rewards on those who have spent
the month of Holy Ramadan abiding by the dictates of Shari'ah, and
all their prayers in this night are accepted. Therefore, it is desirable
to perform Nafl prayers in this night.
Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) is reported to have said:
"Whoever stands up (in worship) in the nights preceding the two Eids
expecting rewards from his Lord, his heart will not die when the
other hearts will die." (Ibn Majah)
Holy Prophet Muhammad al-Mustafa (saw) said:
"I swear by Him Who has sent me with the truth as Prophet;
Archangel Gabriel has reported to me from Archangel Israfel who
directly reports from Almighty Allah (SWT) that one who offers
this prayer, (at the last night of Ramzan al-Mubarak) will not raise
his head from prostration before Almighty Allah (SWT) would forgive
him, accept his acts during the month of Ramzan, and overlooks
his sins ..." (Mafatih al-Jinan)
To benefit from this opportunity, one should perform as much worship
in this night as he can and should pray for all his needs and desires.
Surely for those who repented profusely in the month of Holy Ramadan
and used the auspicious month in the best possible way to gain proximity
to their Creator, the day of Eid is one of true joy and celebration.
They know well that they have seized the opportunities that availed
in Holy Ramadan, and have firm hope in the reward and pleasure of
On the other hand those who squandered the opportunities,
procrastinated in their repentance, and did not seize the blessed
moments, will be left to regret their failure.
Eid is a sweet sour occasion for such people, as they eat, meet, and
greet with a regretful heart and look back at what could have been
a life changing experience.
Our life is no different. The month of Holy Ramadan may be likened
to the entire life span of a person and the day of Eid likened to the
day a person will meet Allah (SWT).
Every day is an opportunity to run towards Allah (SWT) and those who
seize the opportunity of life and fulfill life's objective will be truly
celebrating 'tomorrow', on the day of Qiyamah, when mankind will
stand before their Lord. Holy Quran urges a believer 'to run to Allah'
and 'hasten to the forgiveness of your Lord and paradise.'
Just as Holy Ramadan comes and goes in flash, so will life. The end of
each Holy Ramadan signifies the inevitable end of our lives. Whilst
one may have some hope that if this Ramadan was squandered,
Allah (SWT) may give life until another, there is no such hope for
the journey of life, for when the 'Ramadan' of life is over then it
shall never return. So, if we have been unmindful, we have a chance
with every moment of life to repent and mend our ways. For a
believer who spent his life fruitfully, the meeting with his Creator
will be the Eid of all Eids.
We ask Allah (SWT) to bless us this Eid-ul-Fitr and give us such a bond
and relationship with him that will grant eternal happiness on the day
we return to Him.