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Yaser Birjas | The Ten Days of Dhul Hijjah

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There are tons of reasons why you wouldn’t want to pass up this opportunity. Do you know which one? The first ten days of Dhul Hijjah.

It’s that time of the year again, the last month of the lunar calendar for the year 1431 after the Hijrah of the Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him). This is the time when more than two million people from all around the globe will be meeting together for at least five days in the plains of Makkah, Mina, Arafa and Muzdalifa to perform their sacred journey to Makkah, known to us as al-Hajj, the pilgrimage. What bonds them together? One thing: al-Islam.

If you are already reading this, most likely you are not going to Hajj. And if you’re there already, then what on earth are you doing wasting your time online? Go to the Haram and enjoy your tawaf.

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There are two chances in life: the one which you have already missed and the one which you don’t want to miss. What you already have is no longer a chance, its reality.

Therefore, for those of us who were unable to be there in Makkah, why should we value these special days of the year? Here are my top five reasons.

Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) valued these days so much that he swore by them in the Qur’an. And If Allah swore by something, then it is definitely profound and of the greatest value. Allah says:

والفجر وليال عشر
“by the dawn, and by ten nights” alfajr 89:1-2

Ibn Kathir rahimahullah in his tafsir referred to these ten days as the ten days of Dhul Hijjah. He also attributed this opinion to Ibn Abbas, Ibn az-Zubair and others of the righteous predecessors.

The good deeds performed during these ten days are most rewarded, more than any other time of the year. Ibn Abbas narrated the Messenger salla Allahu alayhi wa sallam said:

(مَا مِنْ أيَّامٍ العَمَلُ الصَّالِحُ فِيهِنَّ أحَبُّ إلى الله مِنْ هَذهِ الأيَّامِ العَشْرِ) ، فقالُوا يا رسولُ الله: ولا الجِهَادُ في سَبِيلِ الله؟ فقالَ رسولُ الله : ( ولا الجِهَادُ في سَبِيلِ الله، إلاّ رَجُلٌ خَرجَ بِنَفْسِهِ ومَالِهِ، فَلَمْ يَرْجِعْ من ذَلِكَ بِشَيْءٍ).

“There are no days during which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days. The companions asked: not even jihad in the cause of Allah? The Messenger of Allah replied: Not even jihad in the cause of Allah except for the one who went to fight taking himself and his wealth but did not return with either of them.” (Bukhari and Tirmidhi.)

These ten days host one special day in which there are so many blessings. It is the day of Arafa, the ninth day of Dhul Hijjah and the day preceding the Eid day. Some of the blessings of Arafa are:

  • Fasting that day expiates the sins of two years, the previous one and the coming year. (Muslim)
  • It is a day in which Allah completed the revelation of the religion, perfected this bounty bestowed upon us and was satisfied with Islam as our religion. This was mentioned in surat al-Ma’edah 5:3. (Bukhari and Muslim)
  • It is the day when Allah AlMighty descends, in a manner that suits His Majesty, to the closest heaven and shows his pride to the angels about the presence of the pilgrims. (Muslim)
  • In this day Allah promises the pilgrims to bestow his mercy on them and forgive their sins so that when they return home they return free of sins just like the day when their mothers gave birth to them. (Bukhari and Muslim)
  • It is a day when many people will be emancipated from the fire of Hell.

The season of the ten days of Dhul Hijjah is a festivity of worship. No other days of the year hold so many diverse acts of worship as done in such a short time, not even in Ramadan. And here is a list of some of what good deeds are done during these days in Makkah and elsewhere around the globe:

  • Hajj and multiple Umrahs by millions of people.
  • The sacrifice of the Dunya and this world for the sake of attending the Hajj.
  • The display of humility, humbleness, and devotion in the actual rituals of Hajj.
  • Tawaaf around the Ka’bah and Sai’ between the two hills of Safa and Marwa.
  • An abundance of Dhikr, the praise of Allah especially takbeer and tahleel and what other pilgrims say the most, Talbiyah.
  • Fasting for the non-pilgrims.
  • Being extra charitable.
  • Offering the hadi’y and udhiyah or qur’ban the sacrifice of livestock and feeding the poor.
  • The inclination towards repentance.
  • The engagement in long du’a or supplications as a sign of humility and humbleness.
  • Maintaining the prayers in the sacred sites al-Haram in Makkah and the Masjid of the Prophet in Madinah.
  • The recitation of the Qur’an.

The ten days of Dhul Hijjah also host the greatest day of the year, Yum-an-Nahr the day of the sacrifice, the 10th which is the actual day of Eid. The Messenger of Allah said:

(إنَّ أَعْظَمَ اْلأيَّامِ عِنْدَ الله تبارك وتعالى يَوْمُ النَّحْرِ ثُمَّ يَوْمُ الْقَرِّ)

“The best day with Allah is yum-an-Nahr, the day of sacrifice and then yum-al-qarr (the day that follows, when the pilgrims reside in the camps of Mina for worship).” (Ahmad, Abu Dawood, and an-Nasa’iee).

So, now that you know the significance of this season, what do you need to do? Here some suggestions for you:

  • Increase your level of worship during the day and during the night.
  • Try to achieve one khatma of the Qur’an (reading it from cover to cover).
  • Keep your tongue moist with dhikr and praise of Allah wherever you are.
  • Maintain a state of tahara and wudu at all times.
  • Make most of your dhikr Takbeer (like the one you recite on Eid day).
  • Fast a few days while the days are short and cold, particularly the 9th, the day of Arafa.
  • If you haven’t paid for the qurban (sacrificial animal) yet, make sure to do so. Perhaps you should donate one to those who are most in need of it in areas such as Pakistan and Gaza.
  • Wake up before Fajr time and pray Qiyam-ul-Layl.
  • Pray your Fard salat on time.
  • Make sure you don’t miss any of the Nafl and Sunnah prayers.
  • Give charity and help those who are less fortunate prepare for the Eid day.
  • Share the spirit of the season and be cheerful with all people.

There is so much you can do for the ten days of Dhul Hijjah, but you are the one who knows your schedule better than any one else. Make sure to make this season a priority and may Allah grant you all Jannatul Firdous.

Remember, there are two chances in life: the one you already missed, and the one you don’t want to miss. So don’t miss out on the ten days of Dhul Hijjah.

Keep supporting MuslimMatters for the sake of Allah

Alhamdulillah, we're at over 850 supporters. Help us get to 900 supporters this month. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Sh. Yaser Birjas is originally from Palestine. He received his Bachelors degree from Islamic University of Madinah in 1996 in Fiqh & Usool, graduating as the class valedictorian. After graduating, he went on to work as a youth counselor and relief program aide in war-torn Bosnia. Thereafter, he immigrated to the U.S. and currently resides in Dallas, Texas. He is also an instructor at AlMaghrib Institute, where he teaches popular seminars such as Fiqh of Love, The Code Evolved, and Heavenly Hues.

10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Yaser Birjas | The Ten Days of Dhul Hijjah | MuslimMatters.org -- Topsy.com

  2. Pingback: First Ten Days of Dhul Hijjah « it is TheVeryEry

  3. Suleiman

    November 9, 2010 at 11:54 AM

    JazakAllahu Khair.

  4. Osama Iqbal

    November 9, 2010 at 3:31 PM

    Wow, mashAllah. Jazak Allah Khayr Shaykh for these precious words of advice.

  5. Jubaid Choudhury

    November 9, 2010 at 4:05 PM

    JazakAllah Khair Shaikh for the reminder.

    Is there any specific reason why the word night is used to refer to the day?

  6. Nida

    November 9, 2010 at 5:22 PM

    Very refreshing to read. :) Thank you!

  7. Algebera

    November 9, 2010 at 6:36 PM

    Aslamu-alaikum:
    Shaykh,
    Thank you for this list here…….I have been preparing for these ten days since last Friday,getting the other household chores away, so i could start on Monday. I shared this on my facebook, and looove the list, now am going to put it on my fridge, inshAllah.
    salam

  8. umtalhah

    November 10, 2010 at 8:01 AM

    just wonderful. barikAllahu feekum wa jazakumAllahu khairan.

  9. Maila

    November 10, 2010 at 9:10 PM

    Jazakallahu Khair.

  10. Pingback: Taaleem Ul Islam

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