Ramadan – a time of unity, punctuality and ihsan
The first ten days of Ramadan have whizzed by and we await the next tens days and then the final ten. Alhamdulillah we have fasted and the most important thing is that Allah has accepted it from us.
Ramadan is a special month which Allah has given us and fasting was prescribed to believers before us, but they were never commanded to fast for a whole month. It is exclusive to Muslims. One of the beautiful lessons of Ramadan is unity. Despite all our divisions and factions, sects and politics and disagreements, in Ramadan we see our Ummah united in fasting. We are obliged to be united.
It is the month of the Quran, the month in which the month was revealed. The whole Ummah is busied all over the globe in reciting the Quran. Wherever you look the Ummah – young and old, men and women are reciting the words of Allah. This is the beauty of Ramadan it brings this warmth to our homes and mosques and communities.
شَهْرُ رَمَضَانَ الَّذِي أُنزِلَ فِيهِ الْقُرْآنُ هُدًى لِّلنَّاسِ وَبَيِّنَاتٍ مِّنَ الْهُدَىٰ وَالْفُرْقَانِ ۚ فَمَن شَهِدَ مِنكُمُ الشَّهْرَ فَلْيَصُمْهُ ۖ وَمَن كَانَ مَرِيضًا أَوْ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍ فَعِدَّةٌ مِّنْ أَيَّامٍ أُخَرَ ۗ يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ بِكُمُ الْيُسْرَ وَلَا يُرِيدُ بِكُمُ الْعُسْرَ وَلِتُكْمِلُوا الْعِدَّةَ وَلِتُكَبِّرُوا اللَّهَ عَلَىٰ مَا هَدَاكُمْ وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ
Ramadan is the month in which the Quran was revealed. Guidance for humanity, and clear portents of guidance, and the Criterion. Whoever of you witnesses the month, shall fast it. But whoever is sick, or on a journey, then a number of other days. God desires ease for you, and does not desire hardship for you, that you may complete the number, and celebrate God for having guided you, so that you may be thankful. [2:185]
In this verse, Allah Almighty said the Quran is guidance for mankind and at the beginning Surat al Baqarah Allah Almighty says the Quran is guidance for those who believe. In order to get direction we need to believe first and so we need to recite to get guidance. Next we need to understand what we are reciting. Then we need to apply what we recite and understand in our lives.
Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) said about the Prophet (peace be upon him):
“His character was the Quran”. [Musnad Ahmad]
When we do this, we will see the change in our lives.
Ramadan is a training course in discipline and punctuality. We have to start our fast on time and we end it punctually. For an Ummah which is lax about timings and casual about when they arrive at an event, Ramadan forces us to keep time. We cannot continue operating on GMT – generous Muslim time!
The link between fasting and excellence is that fasting is hidden – it is entirely between us and Allah. As the Prophet (peace be upon him) told Jibril when he asked what is ihsan, that it is when you worship Allah as though you can see Him.
We fast for His sake and no one but Him knows whether we are fasting and it is out of our consciousness of Him and our obedience that we refrain from eating when there is nothing but our devotion to Allah to stop us. Let’s activate this more in our life.
We pray that Allah makes us among the people of the Quran, as it is a protection. That is why God’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said:
قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: ” تَرَكْتُ فِيكُمْ أَمْرَيْنِ لَنْ تَضِلُّوا مَا تَمَسَّكْتُمْ بِهِمَا: كِتَابَ اللَّهِ وَسُنَّةَ رَسُولِهِ «. رَوَاهُ فِي الْمُوَطَّأ»
“As long as you hold fast to two things which I have left among you, you will not go astray: Allah’s Book and His Messenger’s Sunnah” [Al-Muwatta]
In this hadith the Prophet (peace be upon him) is giving the Ummah the good news that the Quran is your protection forever from going astray, but it’s conditional on your understanding and application of the Quran.
May Allah Almighty enable us to recite, reflect and apply the Quran in our lives and be blessed and protected through it.
Khutbah Shaykh Haytham Tamim 31st March 2023.
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