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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Sharh As-Siyaam Wa Al-Qiyaam- Part 1

Khutbah by Shaykh Abdullah Azzaam (may Allah have mercy on him)

“It is, as the Lord of Glory said, a fixed number of days. Rather, it is a fixed number of hours! The month of Ramadan is either 720 hours, or 696 hours, and every minute of it has a price and a value. The Salaf and the Companions - may Allah be pleased with them - used to await these days of Ramadan from the year to year, as it has been reported in a narration that the Companions used to say, when Rajab had arrived: “O Allah, assist us in worshipping You in Rajab and Sha’ban, and allow us to witness Ramadan.”

Because Ramadan is the annual occasion of the cleansing of the soul, spirit, and body, its effect on the human spirit and body is not that profound. The acts of worship of the soul are many, and as much as the body receives its share of pain during the course of its worship, it will receive its share of light. That is why Jihad is the uppermost peak of Islam; because it is the most painful and difficult of the acts of worship. Its reward is greater, its effect on the soul deeper, and its result in building the spirit and in ingraining Tawhid in it is great.

Therefore, there are acts of worship dealing with one’s wealth. However, its effect on the soul is usually less than the effect of an act of worship dealing with the body. So, Zakah has a deep effect on the soul, as it purifies it from covetousness. However, you cannot truly sympathize with the poor person unless you feel his pain, live as he lives, and starve as he starves. If you starve, then you feel your body becoming stronger and more durable. At that time, you become joyous that you were able to sacrifice something and purify yourself from covetousness.

Jihad is the same way: Jihad with one’s wealth does not purify one’s soul in the same way as Jihad with one’s self does. And because of this, Islam did not relieve any of the Companions of the obligation of Jihad with his self, no matter what his position in society, and no matter how good his reputation, such as in the case of ‘Uthman.

The Salaf - may Allah be Pleased with them - would calculate Ramadan by the minute. They were praying behind Ubayy bin Ka’b- and ‘Umar bin al-Khattab was praying Tarawih behind him - and they would require sticks to support themselves on as a result of his long standing in the prayer, and the Companions would say: “We fear that we will miss the suhur praying behind Ubayy, and we fear that the Fajr time will come, causing us to miss the Blessed Meal - they used to refer to suhur as the Blessed Meal - so, let our children rush to prepare the meal.”

Taken from Benefit of the Day- Ramadan 1429

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