As the first month of the Islamic calendar, the importance of Muharram is profound. The Hijri calendar is lunar and consists of 12 months. Four of these twelve months are sacred: Dhul Qaeda, Dhul Hijjah, Muharram, and Rajab.
“Indeed, the number of months ordained by Allah is twelve—in Allah’s Record since the day He created the heavens and the earth—of which four are sacred.” [Qur’an 9:36]
Importance of Muharram: The Month Of Allah
The month of Muharram is among the four sacred months in Islam, but it is more than that. This month is “the month of Allah” and contains a special day that marks the most known importance of Muharram. On the 10th of Muharram is the Day of Ashura, and this day was obligatory to fast before fasting in Ramadan was ordered.
“Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) ordered (the Muslims) to fast on the day of ‘Ashura, and when fasting in the month of Ramadan was prescribed, it became optional for one to fast on that day (Ashura) or not. [Sahih Al Bukhari 1892]
In the month of Muharram, we are encouraged to increase worship, especially fasting. Fasting is the only action we do that keeps us in a constant state of worship from sunrise to sunset.
Abu Hurairah narrated that: the Messenger of Allah said: “The most virtuous fasting after the month of Ramadan is Allah’s month Al-Muharram.” [Jami` at-Tirmidhi 740]
Events The Occured On The Day Of Ashura
The Day of Ashura is significant to Muslims for many reasons. It was a day of rejoicing when Allah saved our Prophets from their hardships. It is a day of reward after conviction in Allah was tested.
The day Musa (as) said, “Truly my Lord is with me, He will guide me through.”[Quran 26:62]
Here are some of the notable historic Islamic events that occured on the day of Ashura:
- The Day of Ashura was the day that Imam Hussain (ra) was martyred for standing strong in his moral beliefs against Yazid. Imam Hussain (ra) was killed in The Battle of Karbala defending his people against an army of 30,000 soldiers
- Allah withdrew punishment from Prophet Yunus (as)
- Allah accepted the repentance of Prophet Adam (as)
- Prophet Ayyub (as) recovered from his illness
- Allah accepted the repentance of Prophet Yusuf (as) brother
- Bani Israel (people of Musa as) crossed the sea, and Allah saved them from Pharaoh (the day Pharaoh drowned)
- Allah saved Prophet Nuh’s Ark from the flood.
Rewards of Fasting On 9th, 10th and 11th Muharram
Abu Qatadah (RA) reported on the importance of Muharram, saying: The Messenger of Allah (saw) responded to observing As-Saum (the fast) on the tenth day of Muharram, saying, “It is an expiation for the sins of the preceding year.” [Sahih Muslim 1162b]
Ibn Abbas (ra) said, “I never saw Allah’s Messenger (saw) so keen to fast any day and give it priority over any other than this day, the day of Ashura, and this month, meaning Ramadan” (Bukhari).
To-Do List During The Month Of Muharram
- Fast as much as possible
- Signup for a Quran recitation class
- Make a point of fasting on the 10th of Muharram (and 9th or 11th to distinguish between the Jews)
- Wake up in the last part of the night and pray Tahajjud salat
- Give charity often
A Hijri year is about to end, and a new one is about to begin. It’s Time to increase our ibadah in this sacred month and raise our hands in dua. Ask Allah (SWT) for the best in this life and the next. Ameen.