THE BLESSED MONTH OF SHA’BAAN
The Virtues of the 15th of Sha’baan
By the Honour of this Manifesto!
We have revealed it on a blessed night.
Verily We are giving notice.
In this night every judicious matter is approved and circulated by Our instruction.
Verily We are the Senders, by virtue of the mercy of your Rabb.
Verily He is All-hearing and All-knowing.
These are several Aayaat at the beginning of Surah Dukhaan. In these Aayaat Allah Ta’ala has declared the virtues of one night. There is difference of opinion in regard to which night it is. One view is that the Night of Qadr is intended. Another view is that the Night of Baraa-at is intended.
In view of it being proven from other Aayaat of the Qur’aan Majeed and from the Ahadeeth that the Revelation of the Qur’aan to this world was over a period of twenty-three years, the Revelation intended here in these Aayaat, therefore, is that Revelation which came down at once from the Arsh to the heaven nearest to the earth (Samaa-e-Dunya), be it on the Night of Qadr or Night of Baraa-at.
On the Night of Sha’baan this revelation was approved and on the Night of Qadr the actual revelation took place.
Here we do not want to discuss the Tafseer of the Verses; the purpose here is to discuss the virtues of Shab-e-Baraat (Lailatul Baraa-at). Since the Aayaat recited possibly refer to the Night of Baraa-at, this Tafseer was thus mentioned. However, my bayaan is not based on this. This bayaan is based on Ahadeeth with clear import.
One such Hadeeth is: “Fast the day (15th of Sha’baan) and stand (in Salaat) the night.”
Another Hadeeth speaks even more clearly of the objective of its virtue and blessing. The Hadeeth, “Fast the day and stand the night” on the other hand suggests the virtue because prescribing standing for a special time shows that the time enjoys some speciality. Thus, any time which is selected for Ibaadat should be mubaarak (blessed) beforehand. Therefore, Shab-e-Baraat is a night which enjoys significance and thus the Ibaadat of this night enjoys significance.
On this night Allah Jalla Shaanuhu casts a special gaze upon His servants; the Angels descend on this night. By virtue of the connection of this time to these occurrences this night’s status is enhanced. Together with these occurrences the instruction of Ibaadat is given for this night.
The Hadeeth speaking of this night’s virtue and instructing: “…stand (in Salaat) the night,” suggests that there is prior virtue found in this night. On the basis of this, Ibaadat is instructed for this night.
The virtue of this night appears in other Ahadeeth as well. In those Ahadeeth this night is associated with worldly happenings and orders. In this regard one Hadeeth states that the virtue of the Night of Sha’baan is that the actions of humans are raised, in other words, accepted.
It also appears that in this night rizq (sustenance) is allocated.
Furthermore, it is stated that the Farishta (Angels) are informed of all those who are going to be born in the coming year and all those who are going to pass away. This is the content of Saheeh Ahadeeth.
In yet another Hadeeth it is stated that Allah Ta’ala manifests Himself in the Heaven above earth from evening till dawn and He calls out: “Is there anyone seeking forgiveness, for Me to forgive him; is there anyone seeking rizq, for Me to give him rizq?” and so forth.
Together with ‘seeking forgiveness’ the question of ‘seeking rizq’ is also proposed with emphasis because people labour under the impression that by engrossing oneself in Ibaadat a person gets less rizq, whereas in this Hadeeth prior-mention of ‘seeking of forgiveness’ over ‘seeking rizq’ teaches that istighfaar and being purified of sins which are elements of Ibaadat are instrumental in barkat in one’s rizq.
Together with seeking forgiveness the Hadeeth thus draws our attention to seeking sustenance owing to our weakness in temperament, which is our concern for food more than concern for forgiveness.
(Modified from a bayaan by Hazrat Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi titled: Sha’baan)