Q. Could you please give me the breakdown of the three sections of Ramadhaan – what happens, who is forgiven, who is not, Night of Power – Laylatul Qadr, etc.?
A. Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said that the first part of Ramadhaan – the first ten days – are Days of Allah Ta’ala’s Rahmah. In other words the Rahmat of Allah Ta’ala descends in profusion during these ten opening days and for this reason we find that abstaining from food and drink and standing for long periods in Taraaweeh Salaat are akin to habitual practices for us, whereas prior to Ramadhaan going without food and drink and standing for Twenty Rakaats Salaat after Isha were inconceivable. The lesson for us to learn from these first ten days is to resign ourselves to the Will of Allah Ta’ala and inculcate Rahmat (mercy, pity and compassion) and distribute this Rahmat to everyone.
The Second Ten Days are described as Days of Maghfirah as Allah Ta’ala forgives in abundance during these Ten Days. The middle ten days are the most difficult. If the bandah (servant of Allah) remains resolute and continues his/her Ramadhaan Ibaadaat with sincerity and constancy then Allah Ta’ala forgives the sins of these devoted servants of His. Just as Allah Ta’ala is forgiving during these middle days of Ramadhaan, we too, should be forgiving, accommodating and overlooking the mistakes and wrongs of others.
The Last Ten Days are described in the Hadeeth of Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) as Freedom from Hellfire. It is the ultimate glad tiding. With happiness and joy we should engage in Allah Ta’ala’s Ibaadat and Taa’at with Salaat, Tilaawat, Saum, Sadaqah and virtuous character knowing and believing that Allah Ta’ala has announced our freedom from the awful abode of the Fire.