The Holiest Day: Your Guide to the Day of Arafat
It doesn’t get much better than today! The Day of Arafat (Yawm Al-Arafat) is the holiest day in the Islamic lunar calendar, just as the Night of Power (Laylat Al -Qadr) is the holiest night.
The Day of Arafat is celebrated on the 9th day of Dhul-Hijjah, the 12th and final month in the Islamic calendar, and is also known as The Day of Standing (Yawm Al-Waqf), which refers to the pilgrims performing Hajj in Mecca standing in worship before Allah (SWT) when reaching Mount Arafat.
The spiritual blessings contained in this day are immense, and good deeds performed are rewarded abundantly. The day is so great that fasting expiates the sins from the past and coming year. Don’t let today slip by without maximising every precious second!
What is the significance of Arafat?
The Day of Arafat is a day on which:
- Islam was perfected [Qur’an 5:3].
- Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) delivered his farewell sermon at Mount Arafat (see below).
- Millions fast to wipe out the sins of the previous and coming year.
- Allah (SWT) descends to the skies, looks mercifully at the millions of pilgrims on Mount Arafat and forgives them.
Arafat + Jummah = Double the Rewards!
This year, Arafat is extra special as it has fallen on a Friday. This is known as Hajj-e-Akbar, The Greatest Hajj. As our brothers and sisters on Mount of Arafat call sincerely to Allah (SWT), and beg for His forgiveness and guidance, we too can reap the blessings of this special day through worship, good deeds and charity.
‘I heard the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) say, “Whoever revives a Sunnah of mine that dies out after I am gone, he will have a reward equivalent to that of those among the people who act upon it, without that detracting from their reward in the slightest…”’ (Ibn Majah)
Fasting and Praying on the holiest day of the year
The Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) said: "Fasting on the Day of Arafat absolves the sins for two years: the previous year and the coming year.” [Muslim]
Fasting on the Day of Arafat has numerous benefits and is mustahabb (recommended/favoured) for those who are not performing Hajj. It is a practice that redeems the sins of two years.
Allah (SWT) is forgiving and merciful on the Day of Arafat. It is a day for us to pray for forgiveness, and to ask Allah (SWT) for guidance and for His blessing in our lives. The importance of additional prayer is clear from the sheer extent of mercy and forgiveness available on this day!
You can offer the following Arafat dua today:
“Lailaha illalahu wahadahu lasharikalahu lahulmulku walahu hamdu wahuva alakulli shayin kadir”
(“There is no God but Allah alone Who has no partner, to whom dominion belongs, to whom praise is due, and who has power over anything”)
Make sure to make the most of this day by taking moments of reflection and asking for forgiveness from Allah (SWT). On this day, let us remember our blessings and remember those less fortunate than ourselves. May Allah (SWT) bless us all on this special day.
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The Prophet Muhammad's (ﷺ) Final Sermon
After praising, and thanking Allah (SWT) he said:
“O People, lend me an attentive ear, for I know not whether after this year, I shall ever be amongst you again. Therefore listen to what I am saying to you very carefully and take these words to those who could not be present here today.
"O people, just as you regard this month, this day, this city as Sacred, so regard the life and property of every Muslim as a sacred trust. Return the goods entrusted to you to their rightful owners. Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you. Remember that you will indeed meet your Lord, and that He will indeed reckon your deeds. Allah has forbidden you to take usury (interest), therefore all interest obligation shall henceforth be waived. Your capital, however, is yours to keep. You will neither inflict nor suffer any inequity. Allah has Judged that there shall be no interest and that all the interest due to Abbas ibn Abd Al-Muttalib shall henceforth be waived...
"Beware of Satan, for the safety of your religion. He has lost all hope that he will ever be able to lead you astray in big things, so beware of following him in small things.
"O people, it is true that you have certain rights with regard to your women, but they also have rights over you. Remember that you have taken them as your wives only under Allah’s trust and with His permission. If they abide by your right then to them belongs the right to be fed and clothed in kindness. Do treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers. And it is your right that they do not make friends with any one of whom you do not approve, as well as never to be unchaste.
"O people, listen to me in earnest, worship Allah, say your five daily prayers (Salah), fast during the month of Ramadan, and give your wealth in Zakat. Perform Hajj if you can afford to.
"All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety (taqwa) and good action. Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Nothing shall be legitimate to a Muslim which belongs to a fellow Muslim unless it was given freely and willingly. Do not, therefore, do injustice to yourselves.
"Remember, one day you will appear before Allah and answer your deeds. So beware, do not stray from the path of righteousness after I am gone.
"O people, no prophet or apostle will come after me and no new faith will be born.
"Reason well, therefore, O people, and understand the words which I convey to you. I leave behind me two things, the Qu'ran and my example, the Sunnah and if you follow these you will never go astray.
"All those who listen to me shall pass on my words to others and those to others again; and may the last ones understand my words better than those who listen to me directly. Be my witness, O Allah, that I have conveyed your message to your people.”
(Sources: See Al-Bukhari, Hadith 1623, 1626, 6361) Muslim Hadith number 98. Al-TirmidhHadith nos. 1628, 2046, 2085)
FRIDAY 8 JUL 2022