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When You Fast in Ramadan, Allah Lifts Veils

Ramadan Series, Vol 11

Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

17 June 2016 Burton, Michigan

Jumu`ah Khutbah at As-Siddiq Institute & Mosque (ASIM)

O Believers, Muslims, mu’mins! Allah (swt) has blessed us with a month that there is no month like it in the year, that is Ramadan. Tooba liman maata fee Ramadan, Good tidings to the one who died in this month of Ramadan. Good tidings to those who died in this month. I know some people prayed Taraweeh with the imam, and one whose son comes here all the time went into sajda and did not come back up, he died in sajda Salaat at-Taraweeh. What do you think Allah will give to that man? He was granted the best of worshipness, to make sajda in Paradise, and Malak al-Mawt took his soul! May Allah (swt) grant us His Endless Blessings full of His Mercy and the endless blessings of Prophet (s).

`Ulama are dying with no substitutes. Yesterday a big `alim, Shaykh Rajab Deeb, passed away in Damascus. May Allah send him to Paradise. This month, as the Prophet (s) said:

رجب شهر الله، وشعبان شهري، ورمضان شهر أمتي

Rajab is Allah's month, Sha`baan is my month and Ramadan is the month of my Ummah.

(Abul-Fath ibn Abi Fawaris in his `Amalee from al-Hasan)

Rajab is the month of Allah and Sha`ban is the month of Prophet and Ramadan is the month of the Ummah, for everyone to do what they can and be rewarded: to fast, pray and listen to `ulama, to learn what we must fulfill in that month. The Prophet (s) urged the Sahaabah (r) to do the best they can in that month and Allah will reward them.

وروى أبو هريرة رضي اللَّه تعالى عنه عن النبي صلى اللَّه عليه وسلم أنه قال من صام رمضان وقامه إيمانا واحتسابا غفر له ما تقدم من ذنبه

Anyone who fasted Ramadan and didn’t try to go to forbiddens and didn’t miss any day, then Allah will forgive him all his sins. (Bukhari, Muslim)

Abu Hurayrah (r) related from the Prophet (s) that whoever fasted Ramadan, kept his sincerity and piety, and did not make any mistakes except made istaghfaar will be forgiven from whatever he has done. At the end of the month all sins will be forgiven for those fasting and for those who were sick with any illness. May Allah (swt) guide those who are not fasting to begin fasting.

To encourage the Sahaabah (r), Prophet (s) said:

شهر رمضان أوله رحمة وأوسطه مغفرة وآخـــره عـــتق من النــــار

The first (ten days) of the month is mercy, the second (ten days) is forgiveness, and the last (ten days) is salvation from the Fire.

The first ten days of Ramadan is mercy that Allah will reveal to the Prophet (s), who will dress it on the Ummah as he is Rahmatan li ’l-`Alameen, so he must be the one to dress that rahmah, as Allah said:

وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَاكَ إِلَّا رَحْمَةً لِّلْعَالَمِينَ

(O Muhammad!) We have sent you not except as a Mercy for all the Worlds. (Surat al-Anbiyaa, 21:107)

The Prophet (s) said, “The first ten days are rahmah from Allah (swt),” meaning as we fast the first, second, third day, that rahmah is continuously dressing us from Allah until you reach the next ten days, then you are ready: you fasted the first ten days so you are ready for something big. The middle part of it is awsatahu maghfirah. With the Mercy Allah granted to the Prophet (s) to purify the Ummah, to purify those who are sincere and fasting, he will prepare them for maghfirah. In the second ten days Allah will forgive all your sins, so what will you end up with in the last ten days? Freedom from Hellfire, `itqun min an-naar. Encourage the Muslims you know to fast and encourage children to fast even half days in order to acquaint them that Ramadan is a fasting month.

Allah has honored us in this month with a night that is more valuable than a thousand months! Scholars say the entire Holy Qur’an was revealed to Prophet (s) at one time in Laylat al-Qadr, about which Allah (swt) said:

إِنَّا أَنزَلْنَاهُ فِي لَيْلَةِ الْقَدْرِوَمَا أَدْرَاكَ مَا لَيْلَةُ الْقَدْر

We have sent down Holy Qur'an on the Night of Power. What do you know about the Night of Power?

(Surat al-Qadr, 97:1-2)

When the Prophet (s) was told, “Iqraa!” by Sayyidina Jibreel (a), he downloaded the entire Qur’an, which is why when Jibreel (a) said, “Iqraa!” the Prophet (s) said, “Maa anaa bi qaaree,” which many interpret as, “I cannot read.” but another meaning is, “What do you want me to read?”

اقْرَأْ بِاسْمِ رَبِّكَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ

Read in the Name of the One Who created. (Al-`Alaq, 96:1)

“Maa anaa bi qaaree” does not mean “I cannot read,” because Prophet (s) has`Uloom al-Awwaleen wa ’l-Akhireen, Knowledges of Before and After [knowledge beyond any human being], so how could he not know the meaning of what Jibreel (a) wants him to read? According to some scholars, the meaning here is, “What part of the Knowledge do I have permission to speak of?” So in that night the entire Holy Qur’an was revealed to the heart of the Prophet (s), where Allah said:

لَوْ أَنزَلْنَا هَذَا الْقُرْآنَ عَلَى جَبَلٍ لَّرَأَيْتَهُ خَاشِعًا مُّتَصَدِّعًا مِّنْ خَشْيَةِ اللَّهِ وَتِلْكَ الْأَمْثَالُ نَضْرِبُهَا لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ

Had We sent down this Qur'an on a mountain, verily you would have seen it humble itself and cleave asunder for fear of Allah. Such are the similitudes that We propound to men that they may reflect.

(Surat al-Hashr, 59:21)

The Prophet’s (s) heart was able to carry the Holy Qur’an, he relayed to the Sahaabah (r) what he was permitted, what they needed to know and he kept the rest for the Day of Judgment. The Prophet (s) said, “Anyone who stays awake, not sleeping on the Laylat al-Qadr, Allah (swt) will forgive all his sins. It is better than all nights! It is better than a thousand months of worship!”

من قام ليلة القدر إيمانا واحتسابا غفر له ما تقدم من ذنبه

Whoever stands in prayer during Laylat al-Qadr out of faith and holding himself to account will be forgiven all of his sins. (Ahmad)

That one night of Ramadan is better than a thousand months of `ibaadah! Imagine if your age is 60 or 70 years and you fasted 50 Ramadans, 50 x 1,000 - 50,000 months of `ibaadah! Imagine how much Allah is rewarding Ummat an-Nabi (s).

Imam Ghazali (q) said in his classical work, Ihya `Uloom al-Deen, “Fasting is of three levels: as-sawm al-awwaam, the fasting of common people (like us); as-sawm al-khawwaas, the fasting of the pious, sincere people (may Allah make us among them); and as-sawm khawaas al-khawaas, the fast of the highly sincere scholars.” It means zoom in to get the cream to be like those scholars who are most sincere in their worship, struggling to approach Allah’s Divine Presence, like Sayyidina Abu Yazid al-Bistami (q), who was constantly struggling and praying. He said to Allah (swt), “How can I come to You?” Everyone who fasts and prays is doing so to reach Allah’s Divine Presence in dunya and to see Him in Akhirah. Abu Yazid (q) heard a voice of inspiration in his heart, “Leave yourself and come to Me.” The khawaas al-khawaas are like that: they don't listen to their desires, they only seek Allah’s Pleasures.

As-sawm al-awwaam is kaf shahwat al-batan wa ‘l-faraj, to withhold eating and sexual desire. Don’t go eat too much when you break your fast, as then you cannot easily stand for prayer. To have desires is permitted after breaking fast, but we should not overdo it in the last ten days of Ramadan. The fast of the khawaas, the second level, is to stop sinning during the day, as people fast but unfortunately also backbite and we must remember when we do something wrong to immediately ask for forgiveness. The fast of the khawaas al-khawaas is like Sayyidina Abu Yazid al-Bistami (q), to leave our bad desires for Allah’s Sake, to leave everything that is other than Allah, ma siwa'llah. If we can do that, Allah (swt) will reward us.

Sayyidina Musa (a) said, “You honored me, bit-takleem, to speak directly to You without an intermediary of Jibreel (a). Did you give anyone else like what You have given to me?”

Allah replied, “I have servants that I will bring in the Last Days. I honored them with Ramadan and I will be nearer to them than to you.”

وَنَحْنُ أَقْرَبُ إِلَيْهِ مِنْ حَبْلِ الْوَرِيدِ

And We are nearer to you than your jugular vein. (Surat al-Qaaf, 50:16)

Allah honored them with Ramadan, because then He is near His servants, sending His Blessings and Mercy on them. “When you said, ‘O my Lord Let me see You!’ I gave you the honor to speak with Me, but there were 70,000 veils between you and Me that you were unable to remove.”

قَالَ رَبِّ أَرِنِي أَنظُرْ إِلَيْكَ قَالَ لَن تَرَانِي وَلَـكِنِ انظُرْ إِلَى الْجَبَلِ فَإِنِ اسْتَقَرَّ مَكَانَهُ فَسَوْفَ تَرَانِي فَلَمَّا تَجَلَّى رَبُّهُ لِلْجَبَلِ جَعَلَهُ دَكًّا وَخَرَّ موسَى صَعِقًا

He said, "O my Lord! Show Yourself to me that I may look upon You." Allah said, "By no means can you see Me (directly), but look upon the mountain: if it abides in its place, then you shall see Me." When his Lord manifested His glory on the mount, He made it as dust and Moses fainted. (Surat al-`Araaf, 7:143)

When Musa (a) saw how much Allah loves him, Allah (swt) said, “You cannot see Me, but when I send my Noor on the mountain, if it remains you can see Me.” He sent His Noor on that mountain and it shattered, then Sayyidina Musa (a) fainted. Many people have migraines or illness when fasting. Allah (swt) said, “When Ummat an-Nabi (s) fasts until they become sick, their lips become white, their faces become yellow, I will take away all these 70,000 veils when they break their fast! Yaa Musa, good tidings to the one who is thirsty and good tidings to the one who has bad stomach in Ramadan.” This month of Ramadan is one in which Allah will give to Ummat an-Nabi (s). [Du`a.] [End.]


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