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Sunday, July 20, 2014

The night of Power/Decree

Laylat al-Qadr, according to the Prophet Peace be upon him is in the last ten nights of Ramadaan. He, peace be upon him told us specifically to seek it in the odd numbered nights (21, 23, 25, 27). The Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH be upon him) said: “Whoever spends the night of Laylat al-Qadr in prayer out of faith and seeking reward, all his previous sins will be forgiven.” According to another report: “Whoever spends that night in prayer, seeking Laylat al-Qadr, then he catches it, his previous and future sins will be forgiven.” 

Ibn Abbas reported that the Prophet peace be upon him said, "Look for the Night of Qadr in the last ten nights of Ramadan, on the night when nine or seven or five nights remain out of the last ten nights of Ramadan (i.e. 21, 23, 25, respectively)" (Bukhari).  A’ishah (May Allah be pleased with her) said, "Allah's Messenger peace be upon him used to practice I`tikaf (retreat in the Mosque) in the last ten nights and say: 'Seek out Laylat al-Qadr in the (odd nights) of the last ten of Ramadan" (Bukhari and Muslim). Some of the companions had certainty that it was always on a particular one of these odd nights, and some believed that it changes throughout the year. 

Laylat al-Qadr has signs that make it visible to the one who ALLAH helps to see it. The companions (may ALLAH be pleased with them) used to recognize these signs. Still, the Muslim should strive to seek it in the last ten nights of Ramadaan, as enjoined by the Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH be upon him), hoping to earn reward, because someone can always be mistaken in what they perceive. Additionally, the exact date of the night has been lost, as detailed in an authentic narration; Ubaadah Ibn as- Saamit (May Allah be pleased with him) said: "The Prophet came out intending to tell us about Laylat al-Qadr, however two men were arguing and he said: 'I come out to inform you about Laylat al-Qadr but so and so, and, so and so were arguing, so it was raised up, and perhaps that is better for you, so seek it on the (twenty) ninth and the (twenty) seventh and the (twenty) fifth'" (Bukhari).

An authentic report from the Prophet (peace and blessings of ALLAH be upon him) indicates that the signs of Laylat al-Qadr is that the sun rises on the following morning with no visible rays. Ubayy ibn Ka’b used to swear that it was the night of the twenty-seventh, citing this sign as evidence; it is narrated from him (May Allah be pleased with him) who said: that he peace be upon him said: "On the morning following Laylat al-Qadr the sun rises not having any rays, as if it were a brass dish, until it rises up" (Muslim, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah). Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said : "We were discussing Laylat al-Qadr in the presence of Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) so he said: 'Which of you remembers (the night) when the moon arose and was like half a plate?'" (Muslim) 

Ibn Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) said: Allah's Messenger (May Allah be pleased with him) said: "Laylat al-Qadr is calm and pleasant, neither hot nor cold, the sun arises on its morning being feeble and red'' (at-Tayaalisee, Ibn Khuzaimah and al-Bazzaar with a Hasan Isnad).  The other varying opinions about the exact date of the night come from well-known companions (may ALLAH be pleased with them), and they based it on what they heard of the sayings of the Prophet:
  • Abi Saeed al-Khurdri: 21
  • Abi Hurairah: 23
  • ‘Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood, A’isha, and others: 27 (it has occurred on the 27 many times in the past)


The most correct view is that it moves through all the last ten nights (Imaam Maalik), but it is most likely to be one of the odd-numbered nights. Whoever strives in worship during all of the last ten nights, praying, reading Qur’aan, making du’aa’ (supplicating for  and other kinds of good deeds will certainly find Laylat al-Qadr and attain what ALLAH has promised to those who do that out of faith and seeking reward.