Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Names of Nisfu Sha'ban

(continued from the book, Nisfu Syaaban : Kelebihan dan Amalan, by Syed Hassan bin Muhammad Alattas, Masjid Baalwi. Translated by me, so all errors are mine)

The Names of the Eve of Nisfu Sha'ban

Abul Khair al Talaqaani (God have mercy on him) counted the names of the eve of nisfu Sha'ban as many as twenty-two. Amongst them that are well known are -

The Night of Granting of Prayers
The eve of nisfu Sha'ban is the night wherein God the Exalted grants requests. There are so many hadeeth from the Prophet (prayer and peace of God on him) that explain this. Amongst them is a hadith from Imam al-Sayuti from Ibnu Asaakir from Abi Umamah (God have mercy on him) - the Prophet (prayer and peace of God on him) said, on five nights no prayer is rejected. The first night of Rajab and the even of nisfu Sha'ban, and the eve of Friday, and the eve of Eidul Fitr, and the eve of Eidul Adha.
Ibn Omar (God have mercy on him) narrated - on five nights no prayer is rejected. The eve of Friday and the first night of the month of Rajab and the eve of nisfu Sha'ban and the night of Lailatul Qadr and the two eves of Eid.

The Night of Allocation of Fate
The eve of nisfu Sha'ban is also called the night of determination, allocation and fate. On this night God the Exalted determines the fate of a person as to whether his/her provisions are increased or decreased. Whether his/her age will be extended or shortened. Whether there will be any decree of God the Exalted that will be handed down.
Imam an-Naablusi related that the Prophet (prayer and peace of God be on him) ever said - Indeed the prayer on this night will not be rejected.
Therefore the learned of the past recited the famous prayer of nisfu Sha'ban that contains - the eve of nisfu Sha'ban in the blessed month of Sha'ban completes every mater that contains wisdom and determination.
Clearly God the Exalted may amend fate that is predetermined if He wishes to, as stated by Him in the Qur'an in surah al-Hadid verse 2 - And He is Most Powerful over all things.
Imam as-Shafi'e (God have mercy on him) often prayed with the famous prayer - Oh God, Oh the Sublime, we beseech from You gentleness in the fate that You decree.
So also in a hadith where the Prophet (prayer and peace of God be on him) said - the decree of God cannot be moved except by prayer.

The Night of Mercy
The eve of nisfu Sha'ban is the night where God the Exalted sends down mercy. In a hadith, the Prophet (God bless him and grant him peace) said - Indeed God is merciful to my ummat (my people) on this night as numerous as the strands of wool on the sheep of Bani Kalb.
Bani Kalb was a tribe in Yemen.
The similitude of what is said by the Prophet (God bless him and grant him peace) illustrates how much the mercy of God is sent down on that night. There is not a single person from the past to this day who will be able to count the strands of wool on one sheep, let alone of a tribe.
Therefore, would it not be a great loss to those who pass the opportunity to receive this great mercy? When God the Exalted gives mercy to us, it means God gives ease, happiness, peace, joy, pleasure, enjoyment and tranquility. This is mercy. And mercy is sent by God the Exalted so much to those who worship and keep alive the eve of Nisfu Sha'ban.

The Night of Blessing
A person who has blessings will have a joyful life. Even if his earnings are little, his spending will be sufficient. No borrowings. No worries even though others may perceive him as poor.
Food that contains blessing will be sufficient, even if not much in amount. Crops that contain blessing will provide greater yield and be of use. Blessing means a lot of goodness.
Our Mistress Aishah (may God be pleased with her) narrated a hadith from the Prophet (prayer and peace of God be on him) - God the Exalted pours forth goodness on four nights of pouring, the even of Eidul Adha, the eve of Eidul Fitri, the eve of Nisfu Sha'ban and the eve of Arafah.

The Night of Forgiveness
For the people who have sinned, this night is the one to ask for forgiveness from God the Exalted, because this is the great night of forgiveness.
Imam al-Tirmizi and Ibn Maajah narrated a hadith from Our Mistress Aishah (may God be pleased with her) that the Prophet (prayer and peace of God be on him) in this matter said - God the Exalted gives forgiveness more than the strands of wool on the sheep of Bani Kalb.
Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (may God have mercy on him) brings a hadith in his Musnad - Indeed God the Exalted has come on the eve of Nisfu Sha'ban to his slaves and forgives men on earth except for the mushrik (idolators) and mushahin (schismatics).
In another hadith from our Mistress Aishah (may God be pleased with her), the Prophet (prayer and peace of God be on him) said - Oh Humairah (Aishah's pet name), do you know what is this night? This is the eve of Nisfu Sha'ban. Indeed God the Exalted on this night releases from hellfire as many as the strands of wool on the sheep of Bani Kalb. I asked, O Prophet of God, what is the connection with the sheep of Bani Kalb? He (prayer and peace of God be on him) answered, there is no tribe amongst the Arabs that has more sheep than they do. However, I say that it does not include six types of people : those who persevere to drink alcohol, those who persevere in usury and fornication, those who sever ties between people, the makers of idols and those who spread lies.
Al Allamah As Sheikh Abdul Hamid Quds, the scholar of the sacred mosque of Makkah, in his book Kanzun Najaah, added to this the collectors of taxes that are forbidden by Islam, people who are arrogant, and oppressive traders (or those who lie on oath).
There is narration that add sorcerers, idolators, fortune tellers, murderers and those who kill themselves.
Sins such as these require repentance before God the Exalted sends down forgiveness of them.

Repentance
Repentance has three cautions -
First - to know truly that what was done was wrong in the eyes of religion.
Second - to feel sorry for what was done.
Third - to vow to oneself with utmost sincerity that one will never do it again.

The Night of Redemption
The eve of Nisfu Sha'ban is said to be the night of redemption. This can be seen in several hadith wherein the Prophet of God (prayers and peace of God be on him) fasted very much in the month of Sha'ban. Whenever asked, the Prophet (prayers and peace of God be on him) said that it was to redeem sins of a year.

The Night of Intercession
Abu Mansur Mohammaed Ibn Abdullah Al-Hakim An-Naisaaburi (may God have mercy on him) named it the night of intercession. He based this on a hadith wherein the Prophet (prayers and peace of God be on him) said that Jibril (may God grant him peace) had come to him and said, indeed God the Exalted has released from hell fire half of your people and some of them received full intercession (on the eve of Nisfu Sha'ban).

(to be continued, insha Allah... )

2 comments:

blue said...

Salam,

Alhamdulillah.

May Allah swt guide you to beneficial knowledge for yourself and for others.

Thank you for sharing.

MudPie said...

Subhanallah, thanks for the support.