#32 – The 15th of Sha’ban
Mar 14 – 20, 2022
Sha’baan 11 – 17, 1443

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The 15th of Sha'ban

What have Allah and His Messenger said about

The 15th of Sha'ban

حمٓ ۞ وَٱلْكِتَـٰبِ ٱلْمُبِينِ ۞ إِنَّآ أَنزَلْنَـٰهُ فِى لَيْلَةٍ مُّبَـٰرَكَةٍ ۚ إِنَّا كُنَّا مُنذِرِينَ ۞ فِيهَا يُفْرَقُ كُلُّ أَمْرٍ حَكِيمٍ۞
Ḥâ-Mĩm. By the clear Book! Indeed, We sent it down on a blessed night,1 for We always warn ˹against evil˺. On that night every matter of wisdom is ordained

[Surah Ad-Dukhan, Ayah 1-4]
حَدَّثَنَا رَاشِدُ بْنُ سَعِيدِ بْنِ رَاشِدٍ الرَّمْلِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا الْوَلِيدُ، عَنِ ابْنِ لَهِيعَةَ، عَنِ الضَّحَّاكِ بْنِ أَيْمَنَ، عَنِ الضَّحَّاكِ بْنِ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ بْنِ عَرْزَبٍ، عَنْ أَبِي مُوسَى الأَشْعَرِيِّ، عَنْ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ قَالَ ‏ “‏ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَيَطَّلِعُ فِي لَيْلَةِ النِّصْفِ مِنْ شَعْبَانَ فَيَغْفِرُ لِجَمِيعِ خَلْقِهِ إِلاَّ لِمُشْرِكٍ أَوْ مُشَاحِنٍ ‏”‏ ‏.‏ حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ إِسْحَاقَ، حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو الأَسْوَدِ النَّضْرُ بْنُ عَبْدِ الْجَبَّارِ، حَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ لَهِيعَةَ، عَنِ الزُّبَيْرِ بْنِ سُلَيْمٍ، عَنِ الضَّحَّاكِ بْنِ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ أَبَا مُوسَى، عَنِ النَّبِيِّ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ نَحْوَهُ ‏.‏
It was narrated from Abu Musa Al-Ash’ari that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:
“Allah looks down on the night of the middle of Sha’ban and forgives all His creation, apart from the idolater and the Mushahin.” Another chain from Abu Musa, from the Prophet (ﷺ) with similar wording.

[Sunan Ibn Majah 1390 – Grade Da’if (Darussalam)]

The 15th of Sha’ban

Because some versions of the Tradition state that births, deaths and sustenance are decreed in the night of immunity or 15th night of Sha’ban, some of the scholars have interpreted the phrase ‘ لَيْلَةٍ مُّبَـٰرَكَةٍ’ in the current verse as referring to ‘laylat-ul-bara’ah’ or ‘the Night of Immunity’. Ibn Kathir, first of all, says this Tradition is mursal and such Tradition cannot be reliable in the presence of clear/express texts. Qadi Abu Bakr Ibn ‘Arabi asserts that no authentic Tradition relating to mid-Sha’ban is available which may show that sustenance, births and deaths are determined and decreed in that night. He further rejects the idea that there is any reliable Tradition on the merit of this night. Ruh-ul-Ma’ani, however, cites a Tradition, without a chain of transmitters, narrated by Sayyidna Ibn ‘Abbas in which he says that sustenance, life and death are determined in the mid-Sha’ban night, and in the Night of Power the decrees are handed over to the angels. If this Tradition is confirmed, then the two interpretations can be reconciled and synchronized. Otherwise, the express words of Qur’an and authentic Traditions relating to (يْلَةٍ مُّبَـٰرَكَةٍ) and (فِيهَا يُفْرَقُ) in the verse of Surah Dukhan clearly show that they refer to the ‘Night of Power’

[Maarif ul Quran Vol-7 (pg 745-746), Maktabah Dar al Uloom, Translation by Prof. Muhammad Hasan Askari & Prof. Muhammad Shamim]

Amongst the days and nights of Sha‘bān, the fifteenth night is noted for its great blessings and virtues. This night is known as Laylatul-Barā’ah (the night of emancipation), as in it a large number of servants are forgiven and emancipated from the fire of Jahannam

Fortunate indeed are those who attain the full blessings and benefits of this night by spending it in performing good and refraining from evil. One must strive his utmost to attend to ‘ibādah (worship) in this auspicious night as this night indeed is a great favour of Allāh (SWT) for the believers. There are many virtues mentioned in the aḥādīth in regard to this night.

1. Sayyidunā Mu‘ādh ibn Jabal (RA) narrates that the Messenger of Allāh (SWT) said, “In the fifteenth night of Sha‘bān, Allāh (SWT) manifests and forgives all His creation except for the mushrik and the spiteful.” (Aṭ-Ṭabarānī)

2. Sayyidah ‘Ā’ishah (RA) narrates, “The Messenger of Allāh s came to me (one night) and took off his clothes, but he had hardly sat down when he got up again, put on his clothes and left. A strong ghayrah (sense of honour and selfrespect) overtook me as I thought he was going to one of his other wives. I followed him and found him in the graveyard of Baqī‘ seeking forgiveness for believing men and women and the martyrs. I said (to myself), ‘May my parents be sacrificed for you. You, (the Prophet) are in want of your Lord and I am in want of the world.’
I returned to my room (quickly) and I was breathless. The Prophet s arrived shortly and said, ‘Why are you breathless, O ‘Ā’ishah?’ I said, ‘May my parents be sacrificed for you. You came to me and took off your clothes, but you had hardly sat down when you got up and put on your clothes (and left). A strong ghayrah overtook me and I thought you were going to one of your (other) wives until I saw you in (the graveyard of) Baqī‘ doing whatever you were doing.’ He s said, ‘O ‘Ā’ishah! Did you fear that Allāh and his Messenger will treat you with injustice? Jibra’īl came to me and said, ‘This night is the fifteenth night of Sha‘bān. Allāh sets free from Hell during this night, souls equivalent to the hair (and wool) of the goats of Banī Kalb.’ (Banī Kalb possessed the largest number of goats in the Arabian peninsula.)

‘However, Allāh will not look (with mercy) even on this (auspicious) night towards mushriks, one who harbours ill will against his fellow beings, one who cuts himself off from his near relatives, one who dangles his clothes over his ankles, one disobedient to parents and a habitual drunkard.’” Sayyidah ‘Ā’ishah M says, “He took off his clothes, then said, ‘O ‘Ā’ishah! Will you permit me to spend this night in worship.’ I replied, ‘Certainly. May my parents be sacrificed for you.’ The Prophet s got up and remained in sajdah (prostration) for a very long time until I thought he had passed away. I got up to inquire and placed my hand on his feet to feel that he was alive, thus I became happy. I heard him say in his prostration:

أَعُوذُ بِعَفْوِكَ مِنْ عِقَابِكَ ، و أَعُوْذُ بِرِضَاكَ مِنْ سَخَطِكَ ، وَ أَعُوْذُ بِكَ مِنْكَ ، جَلَّ وَجْهُكَ ، لَا أُحْصِيْ ثَنَاءََ عَلَيْكَ ، أنَتَ كَمَا أَثْنَيْتَ عَلٰى نَفْسِكَ

‘I seek refuge in Your Forgiveness from Your Punishment. I seek refuge in Your Pleasure from Your Anger. I seek refuge in You from You i.e. Your Punishment. Majestic is Your Being. I am not able to praise You (as You are worthy of praise). You are exactly as You have praised Yourself.’


In the morning, I mentioned these words to him. He (SAW) said, ‘O ‘Ā’ishah! Learn them and teach them (to others) because Jibra’īl taught me and ordered me to repeat them over and over again in sajdah.’” (Al-Bayhaqī)

Note

Shaykh Muftī Taqi Usmani ḥafiẓahullāh states, “Although the chain of narrators of some of these aḥādīth suffer with some minor technical defects, yet when all these aḥādīth are combined together, it becomes clear that this night has some well founded merits, and observing this night as a sacred night is not a baseless concoction as envisaged by some modern scholars who, on the basis of these minor defects, have totally rejected giving any special importance to this night. In fact, some of these aḥādīth have been held by some scholars of ḥadīth as authentic and the defects in the chain of some others have been treated by them as minor technical defects which, according to the science of ḥadīth, are curable by the variety of their ways of narration. That is why the elders of the Ummah have constantly been observing this night as a night of special merits and have been spending it in worship and prayers.”

[Taken from “The Significance of Sha’bān”, Shaykh Muhammad Saleem Dhorat]

Spiritual Reminders

Recommended Deeds
The following practices are derived from the aḥādīth which have been mentioned above for Sha‘bān and its virtuous 15th night.

1. It is desirable that one fasts in the month of Sha‘bān as much as one can. Fasting on the Ayyāmul-Bīḍ (i.e. 13th, 14th and 15th of the Islamic month) and Mondays and Thursdays will be a means of even more reward as it is Sunnah to fast on these days. However, if fasting in Sha‘bān is going to affect the fasting of Ramaḍān then one should refrain from it. Note: The fast of the 15th of Sha‘bān can only be derived from a ḥadīth that has an extremely weak narrator in the chain of narration, due to which it cannot be relied upon in the matter of the injunctions of Sharī‘ah. Thus, the fast of the 15th of Sha‘bān cannot be termed as Sunnah or Mustaḥab.

2. Although ṣalāh should be performed in jamā‘ah (congregation) everyday, on this auspicious night, one must participate with deep and solemn care in the Maghrib, ‘Ishā and Fajr Ṣalāh.
3. Spend as much time of the night as possible in worship individually. No specific du‘ā or method of worship has been prescribed. One may engage in dhikr, recitation of the Qur’ān, ṣalāh, learning and teaching or any other form of ‘ibādah. However, one must refrain from worldly talk and wasting of time. If ‘ibādah is not possible then at least avoid all sinful and useless acts and go to bed as soon as possible.

4. In one ḥadīth it has been mentioned that Rasūlullāh (SAW) visited the graveyard of Baqī‘. However, one may not establish the practice to be Sunnah as there is no mention of Rasūlullāh (SAW) making it a general practice of this night. Hence, if one visits the graveyard once in a while it will be permissible.

One must refrain in particular from all those practices that are contrary to the Sunnah. Many of us deprive ourselves of the blessings of such auspicious moments and the Favours of Allāh (SWT) by following those customary acts which have no basis in the Qur’ān and Sunnah. May Allāh (SWT) guide us all on the straight path and enlighten us with the blessings of this sacred month and its blessed night. Āmīn.

[Taken from “The Significance of Sha’bān”, Shaykh Muhammad Saleem Dhorat]

YOUR WEEKLY DOSE OF

Sirah

The 15th Night of Sha’ban
Ummul-Mu’mineen ‘Aishah (RA) is reported to have said, “Once the Holy Prophet performed the Salah of the night (Tahajjud) and made a very long Sajdah until I feared that he has passed away. When I saw this, I rose (from my bed) and moved his thumb (to ascertain whether he is alive). The thumb moved, and I returned (to my place). Then I heard him saying in Sajdah.

أَعُوذُ بِعَفْوِكَ مِنْ عِقَابِكَ ، و أَعُوْذُ بِرِضَاكَ مِنْ سَخَطِكَ ، وَ أَعُوْذُ بِكَ مِنْكَ ، جَلَّ وَجْهُكَ ، لَا أُحْصِيْ ثَنَاءََ عَلَيْكَ ، أنَتَ كَمَا أَثْنَيْتَ عَلٰى نَفْسِكَ

‘I seek refuge in Your Forgiveness from Your Punishment. I seek refuge in Your Pleasure from Your Anger. I seek refuge in You from You i.e. Your Punishment. Majestic is Your Being. I am not able to praise You (as You are worthy of praise). You are exactly as You have praised Yourself.’

Thereafter, when he raised his head from Sajdah and finished his sa!ah, he said to me: ‘”Aishah, did you think that the Prophet has betrayed you?” I said, “No, O prophet of Allah, but I apprehended that your soul has been taken away because your Sajdah was very long.” He asked me, “Do you know which night is this?” I said, “Allah and His Messenger know best.” said, “This is the night of the half Of Sha’ban. Allah Almighty looks upon His slaves in this night and forgives those who seek forgiveness and bestows His mercy upon those who pray for mercy but keeps those who have malice (against a Muslim) as they were before,” (and does not forgive them unless they relieve themselves from malice).

[رواه البيهقي, و قال : هذا مرسل جيد (الترغيب والترهيب للمنذري ص 232 ج 2)]

Sunnah Acts

What should be done in this night?
In order to observe the Night of Bara’ah, one should remain awakened in this night as much as he can. If someone has better opportunities, he should spend the whole night in worship and prayer. However, if one cannot do so for one reason or another, he can select a considerable portion of the night, preferably of the second half of it for this purpose, and should perform the following acts of worship:

Salah

The Recitation of the Holy Quran

One should also perform dhikr (recitation of the name of Allah)

The best benefit one can draw from the blessings of this night is prayers and supplications.


[Taken from “Islamic Months”, Mufti Taqi Uthmani]

Adhkar/Dua

Dua Before The Month of Ramadan
اللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ لَنَا فِي رَجَبٍ وَشَعْبَانَ وَبَلِّغْنَا رَمَضَانَ
O Allah, bless us in Rajab and Sha’ban and bring us to Ramadan.

[Mishkat al-Masabih 1369]

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