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Which are the Two Gifts of Ramadhan?
English Bayan, 16 mins
13th April, 2021

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Which are the two gifts of Ramadhan?

​First and foremost, we should be grateful a million times over that after quite some time, we are back in this Masjid. We always used to have this Majlis in this very Masjid, and Allah ta’ala, with His Fadhl and Karam, has given us the opportunity to hold the Majlis of Dhikr here at the beginning of Ramadhan. This is all the Fadhl and Karam of Allah ta’ala. We see the situation in the world at the moment, especially in India where the Masjids are closed and Tarawih cannot take place and even congregational Salah cannot be performed. And though the illness is here as well, and we have to be cautious, yet through the Karam of Allah ta’ala, we are gathered here for Dhikr.

​Dhikr is a very important thing. It is a great action and this is always the case; there is no doubt about this, for Allah ta’ala has said {وَلَذِكۡرُ ٱللَّهِ أَڪۡبَرُ} – it is always great. But it has a particularly close connection to this month – the Holy Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam has said this from his blessed tongue in a unique way. As we have mentioned many times, there is a famous Hadith about Dhikr and Ramadhan, where it is said that in Sha’ban, the Holy Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam announced the greatness of this month. Now, for example, because it rains very often and the wind blows every day, we regard these as very normal, routine occurrences. However, if it was announced that very heavy rain was due to fall, or that a very powerful wind was coming, then a different attitude to these would arise, and people would start thinking that the rain and wind will become intense. Wind and rain happen regularly, but when there is an announcement about possible danger or hazard or distress, then a person reflects on this. This gives these events particular importance.​

​If we look at the months, they are all similar, and they are all great and close to Allah; but when Allah’s Nabi sallallahu alayhi wasallam made this announcement in Sha’ban, then the particular importance of this month was highlighted. Just like the Ambiya alayhimu-s-Salam, all the months are great and close to Allah, but when Allah’s Nabi sallallahu alayi wasallam announced in Sha’ban, the month before, he gave a special emphasis by referring to this as a ‘Shahrun Adheem.’ He was saying ‘The other months are there, but be careful because Allah ta’ala is about to send you a great month, a very great month.’ We can see from this that the greatness of this month must be very special. If an announcement in the weather forecast said that a very strong wind was coming, then people would start to become cautious. Allah’s Nabi sallallahu alayhi wa sallam is saying ‘All the months are great and they all have Barakaat, but be very careful about this month because you need to be very alert in respect of this very great month that Allah ta’ala is bestowing upon you.’

​So from this, the people who have consciousness and awareness and wisdom and Aql realise that this announcement has come from this great personality whose utterances were all directed by Allah subhana wa ta’ala. So we shouldn’t say ‘Oh, Rajab has gone, Shawwal has gone.’ Rather, we should think about why this month has been defined as Adheem. What are the great things that are in this month? How many Barakaat are there? How many treasures has Allah ta’ala gathered together and sent to us in this month? This month is Adheem, but Allah’s Nabi sallallahu alayhi wasallam said ‘I will tell you something: What is within this month? There are four very brilliant things that Allah ta’ala has given to you.’ This is what is Adheem about this month, but we walk around thinking ‘What is Adheem in this month? What should we do? How great is it? How should we attain its greatness? What should we do?’ So the Prophet sallallahu alayhin wa sallam has given us a shortcut in highlighting these four things. Everything that we do in this month is worship, alhamdulillah – everything is there. But four things are mentioned specifically by the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam which we should be especially alert about, and beyond this, the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam has given an even more direct shortcut. In the words of this Hadith, the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam said that from those four, two of those deeds are so brilliant and excellent that by doing just those two actions, the Pleasure of Allah ta’ala will be attained thereby.

What else do we need? Tell me. This is such a great and excellent month that Allah ta’ala has told of the glory of this month in the Qur’an. The verses of the Qur’an are attesting to it, the Qur’an is attesting, and the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam is explaining the importance of Ramadhan to us. My brothers, the Pleasure of Allah is the most important need for which we have come to this world. We have come to this world to please Allah – every deed of ours should be to please Allah. We should never have intention to do any action that doesn’t please Allah. No matter how many great deeds there are externally, they are nothing but dust, zero beyond zero, if there is no intention to attain the Pleasure of Allah in that action. If I stand to pray Salah and pray Nawafil after Nawafil, but my Niyyah is not to attain Allah’s Pleasure, then the people can say ‘Oh, he is a Namazi who does lots of prostrations – he is this, he is that’ – but my intention is not to please Allah. The pious predecessors have said that whenever you want to do an action, even a small deed – and people think that only the great actions please Allah, but actually the small deeds also please Allah – then whatever you do, even moving an obstacle like a branch from the path, for example, before you do so, connect it to Allah. Say ‘Oh Allah, I have no need to remove this twig that is in the way, but I am doing so to earn Your Pleasure because it is an obstacle in the way of your Makhluq. Oh Allah, I seek Your Pleasure in removing this obstacle.’ Allah says ‘Did you do this for Me? This is a great action that you have done!’ In the Hereafter, Allah will say ‘This individual did this action for Me!’ SubhanAllah.

Today, our situation is that we do a lot of deeds and worship, and there are rewards for these in the Akhirah, except that our Niyyah is not pure. There is Riya, showing off and wanting people to know what we are doing, or there is greed or some other secondary objective for doing that action. Why? Because Nafs and shaytan are within us and we don’t control them. These two factors are within us and we don’t realise this driving force behind our deeds. We hear the praise from others, but we don’t realise that we are unaware of these two key factors within us. People may praise you in the world for your big deeds, but you are not pleasing Allah. So it is very important for us that our Niyyah, our intention, should be for Allah’s Pleasure.

So Allah’s Nabi sallallahu alayhi wasallam said that in this month, certain great actions have been given to you and these are the most important actions through which Allah ta’ala will become happy with you. SubhanAllah. This is why it is stated that when a person goes through Ramadhan, then he comes out at the other end and the Pleasure of Allah is given to him at that time. Allah ta’ala says ‘This is the good news which I have given to you about this month.’ So what do we need to do? We see people doing a lot in Ramadhan, but we don’t think about those two actions that Allah’s Nabi sallallahu alayhi wasallam has said that will bring Allah’s Pleasure. We should run after those actions - we should run after those actions and never leave them. We should grab those actions without question. We should think ‘Maybe I won’t get this month again, so I will not leave these actions in this month because they will bring about the objective of my life, which is that Allah will become pleased with me.’ Should we do these actions, my brothers? Yes – for this is our objective.

So what are those two actions? The Prophet salallahu alayhi wasallam has defined them for us, so we need to do these two great deeds. What are they? Dhikrullah and Astaghfirullah – that’s it, SubhanAllah! We recite Qur’an – ten Qur’ans or fifteen Qur’ans – and this is Ibadah. Do Nawafil and whatever Katheer Ibadah you want to do – there is no prohibition in this – but do not leave those two actions which have been mentioned here, for which Allah ta’ala has given a specific guarantee of His Pleasure. These two actions are such that they are connected to the correct Niyyah of the human being because he does them for Allah. And after this, we will do the rest of the A’maal; we will recite Qur’an, we will listen to Qur’an, for the Qur’an is the glory of this month, the Noor of this month, but we must also do these pure actions for the sake of Allah. First, do Astaghfar continuously for your sins, and secondly, do Allah’s remembrance in abundance. And then Allah ta’ala will accept all of your other Ibadadaat and they will also be a means to the Pleasure of Allah.

So my brothers, we should be grateful to Allah for bringing us to this first Majlis of Ramadhan after Asr. I know that your time is precious and that you have other pressures and commitments in life, to family, to home and to work. But alhamdulillah, this is not for one or two days – Allah ta’ala has given us thirty days for this work, so we need to make an effort. We should limit our worldly activities in this month; in keeping with this month, ensure that your other tasks and issues and actions are kept within limits. This is not a common activity happening here – the whole world is listening to this at the moment. Wherever people are listening, reflect upon your locality and your region and your country. We are not doing a common deed here – it is amazing that Allah’s Majalis are even existing at this moment. We don’t realise that this is not common – rather, this a very special opportunity to enjoy Allah’s Rahmah that we are getting at this time. It is not me who is saying this – these are words that came on the tongues of the pious predecessors. This is a source of amazing, tremendous Pleasure of Allah that we can attend such a Majlis in Ramadhan.

To be in an assembly of Allah’s remembrance in Ramadhan should be considered a brilliant, Adheem, fantastic benefit from Allah. We attain our objective by saying ‘Allah, Allah’, but here, the Majalis of Allah are taking place. This is not individual Dhikr – it is a Majlis! My brothers, turning away from such a gathering should be considered as a very weird thing to do. So we make Dua: ‘Oh Allah, give me health and give me the determination to arrive at the Majalis that are taking place somehow or other.’ Then we will be grateful to Allah for the Ni’mah of Allah if we manage to attend physically. This is your choice. We have read the Hadith and you have heard the Hadith, so try to be regular. This is the first of Ramadhan, and we don’t know what will happen tomorrow, but let us make the Niyyah to attend every day, so even if it doesn’t happen tomorrow, then Allah ta’ala will give the reward of attending the Majlis for the whole month of Ramadhan due to that Niyyah. If, due to some tragedy or other occurrence, this Majlis should not take place, then Allah ta’ala will say ‘These are My servants, and they attended the first Majlis, so even if it didn’t take place thereafter, I will give them the reward for all thirty days.’

So first and foremost, make this Niyyah today: ‘Oh Allah, make this Masjid full and occupied with Your Dhikr.’ In this Masjid, Dhikr is done with Sukoon and with peace and it should not be considered a small Masjid. We should do Shukr to Allah whenever these Majalis take place. Some people get tired after Fajr and run home, but we become alive with the Dhikr of Allah after Fajr – what a great point! So don’t leave that first Majlis, and then this one will be the second of the day, and then another comes after Isha and Tarawih. Others get tired, but we do not get tired – we repeat the Dhikr of Allah. So whose Fadhl and Karam is this? It is Allah’s mercy beyond mercy – it is His Grace and His bounty; it is His treasure.

What great rewards Allah ta’ala has given to us! One is the action itself, for if we are hungry and Allah ta’ala places delicious, tasty food in front of us, would we say that we don’t want to eat it? Imagine how ungrateful such a person would be if he didn’t partake of that food – think about it yourself. How rude a person is if he is desperately hungry and then he rejects the food that Allah ta’ala presents to him, saying, ‘I am not going to eat that food.’ People would say that such a person is very rude and a wasteful human being. What a weird person who is dying and struggling all year long, wondering what will happen to himself in the Hereafter and in the grave, and he then rejects the dishes of the Akhirah that Allah ta’ala has prepared, Majalis which people can partake of in their homes, Majalis that they can join easily, that women folk can join and get the whole reward from in just the same way. Imagine!

How many days is this for? Allah says {أَيَّامً۬ا مَّعۡدُودَٲتٍ۬} – just a few days, only four weeks. Four weeks is nothing for such a massive reward, and we ask Allah ta’ala for eighty years or one hundred years of life. Ask those poor souls who did not live to see this month, who have departed from this world – they have left, haven’t they? They departed prior to Ramadhan. Allah ta’ala has given this to us so let us appreciate this, and make effort to obtain the Tawfeeq to attend as many Majalis as we can. Keep coming, keep attending.

May Allah ta’ala give us the Tawfeeq and the ability to do this. Ameen
14th Apr, 2021
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