MISPLACING PRIORITIES IN RAMADAN(Dr. Ahmad Abubakar Mahmud Gumi)


MISPLACING PRIORITIES IN
RAMADAN
Praise be to Allah the blessed
month of Ramadan is fast
approaching, the faithful are
preparing their minds to give the
best throughout the month in
anticipation of getting deliverance
from Hell fire and admittance into
the bliss of paradise. May Allah
See us through the month in
tranquility and great spiritual
upliftment. Ameen.
A shopper with little money and
many needs has no option but to
prioritize his shopping list in an
attempt to get the best of what is
economically attainable. This
natural logic seems to be oblivious
to many worshipers especially
during the blessed month of
Ramadan.
It is never the loudest worship that
bears the greatest reward. In
Radaman, for the rich, generally
spending millions in Umra worship
amidst abject poverty and want is
at the top of their worshiping list.
For the poor, attending the loudest
and the sweetest voiced
supererogatory night pray may be
what they generally consider the
pinnacle of their devotion.
Those who get the best of
Ramadan are those who
abundantly feed the poor and give
charity to the needy, the sick and
orphans. People in prison, soldiers
and police in barracks, students in
schools are all under nourished
especially during this blessed
month. Spending in feeding them is
more rewarding than spending in
Umra. Building schools, hospitals,
roads, planting trees, assisting
teachers the backbone of
education are all greatly
rewardable worship that depends
on wealth but are serious
underfunded.
This judgment is came about from
the fact that any instruction that is
established first in the Quran, then
emphasized by the Sunnah, then
agreed upon by the Fuqaha of the
Salaf, is the supreme worship that
should be top of the list of any
genuine worshiper. Feeding the
hungry especially during starvation
or economic hardship is one of
those injunctions that enjoyed this
credit preference by Allah and His
messenger and the Scholars.
Whereas Umra in Ramadan was
stated only in the Sunnah, which
some scholars interpreted as a
peculiar reward to a specific event
during the life of the prophet –
alaihis Salam.
Allah said:
﴿ ﻭﻳﻄﻌﻤﻮﻥ ﺍﻟﻄﻌﺎﻡ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺣﺒﻪ ﻣﺴﻜﻴﻨﺎ ﻭﻳﺘﻴﻤﺎ
ﻭﺃﺳﻴﺮﺍ * ﺇﻧﻤﺎ ﻧﻄﻌﻤﻜﻢ ﻟﻮﺟﻪ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻟﺎ ﻧﺮﻳﺪ ﻣﻨﻜﻢ
ﺟﺰﺍﺀ ﻭﻟﺎ ﺷﻜﻮﺭﺍ * ﺇﻧﺎ ﻧﺨﺎﻑ ﻣﻦ ﺭﺑﻨﺎ ﻳﻮﻣﺎ ﻋﺒﻮﺳﺎ
ﻗﻤﻄﺮﻳﺮﺍ * ﻓﻮﻗﺎﻫﻢ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﺷﺮ ﺫﻟﻚ ﺍﻟﻴﻮﻡ ﻭﻟﻘﺎﻫﻢ
ﻧﻀﺮﺓ ﻭﺳﺮﻭﺭﺍ * ﻭﺟﺰﺍﻫﻢ ﺑﻤﺎ ﺻﺒﺮﻭﺍ ﺟﻨﺔ
ﻭﺣﺮﻳﺮﺍ﴾ ]ﺍﻹﻧﺴﺎﻥ12 – 8 : ]
( And They feed, for the love of
Allah, the indigent, the orphan, and
the captive,- * (Saying),”We feed
you for the sake of Allah alone: no
reward do we desire from you, nor
thanks. * “We only fear a Day of
distressful wrath from the side of
Our Lord.” * But Allah will deliver
them from the evil of that Day, and
will shed over them a light of
beauty and (blissful) joy. * And
because They were patient and
constant, He will reward them with
a Garden and (garments of) silk. )
Allah also Said:
﴿ ﺃﻟﻢ ﻧﺠﻌﻞ ﻟﻪ ﻋﻴﻨﻴﻦ (8) ﻭﻟﺴﺎﻧﺎ ﻭﺷﻔﺘﻴﻦ (9)
ﻭﻫﺪﻳﻨﺎﻩ ﺍﻟﻨﺠﺪﻳﻦ (10) ﻓﻠﺎ ﺍﻗﺘﺤﻢ ﺍﻟﻌﻘﺒﺔ (11) ﻭﻣﺎ
ﺃﺩﺭﺍﻙ ﻣﺎ ﺍﻟﻌﻘﺒﺔ (12) ﻓﻚ ﺭﻗﺒﺔ (13) ﺃﻭ ﺇﻃﻌﺎﻡ
ﻓﻲ ﻳﻮﻡ ﺫﻱ ﻣﺴﻐﺒﺔ (14) ﻳﺘﻴﻤﺎ ﺫﺍ ﻣﻘﺮﺑﺔ (15) ﺃﻭ
ﻣﺴﻜﻴﻨﺎ ﺫﺍ ﻣﺘﺮﺑﺔ﴾ ]ﺍﻟﺒﻠﺪ16 – 8 : ]
( Have we not made for Him a pair
of eyes?- * And a tongue, and a
pair of lips?- * And shown Him the
two highways? * But He hath made
no haste on the path that is steep. *
And what will explain to Thee the
path that is steep?- * (it is:) freeing
the bondman; * Or the giving of
food In a Day of privation * To the
orphan with claims of relationship,
* Or to the indigent (down) In the
dust.)
In the Hadith narrated by both Al-
bukhari and Muslim, the Prohet –
Alaihis Salatu Wa Salam- said: “the
Hour will not be established until
when one of you will roam about
with his Charity (sadaqa) without
finding who will accept it from him
(from opulence of that time) then
one of you will surely stand before
Allah without any screen between
them and without any translator
translating for him, then (Allah will
Say to him: Have I not given you
wealth? He will say: Yes! The He
(Allah) will Say: Have I not sent you
a messenger? He will say: Yes! He
will then turn to his right and see
nothing except the Hell Fire then to
his left, he will see nothing except
the Hell Fire (on this note the
prophet said:) then one of you
should shield himself from Hell fire
even with half segment of a date
fruit and if (he is so poor) he can’t
find then with a good word”
(ﻓﺈﻥ ﺍﻟﺴﺎﻋﺔ ﻻ ﺗﻘﻮﻡ ﺣﺘﻰ ﻳﻄﻮﻑ ﺃﺣﺪﻛﻢ ﺑﺼﺪﻗﺘﻪ
ﻻ ﻳﺠﺪ ﻣﻦ ﻳﻘﺒﻠﻬﺎ ﻣﻨﻪ ﺛﻢ ﻟﻴﻘﻔﻦ ﺃﺣﺪﻛﻢ ﺑﻴﻦ ﻳﺪﻱ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ
ﻟﻴﺲ ﺑﻴﻨﻪ ﻭﺑﻴﻨﻪ ﺣﺠﺎﺏ ، ﻭﻻ ﺗﺮﺟﻤﺎﻥ ﻳﺘﺮﺟﻢ ﻟﻪ ﺛﻢ
ﻟﻴﻘﻮﻟﻦ ﻟﻪ ﺃﻟﻢ ﺃﻭﺗﻚ ﻣﺎﻻ ﻓﻠﻴﻘﻮﻟﻦ ﺑﻠﻰ ﺛﻢ ﻟﻴﻘﻮﻟﻦ ﺃﻟﻢ
ﺃﺭﺳﻞ ﺇﻟﻴﻚ ﺭﺳﻮﻻ ﻓﻠﻴﻘﻮﻟﻦ ﺑﻠﻰ ﻓﻴﻨﻈﺮ ﻋﻦ ﻳﻤﻴﻨﻪ
ﻓﻼ ﻳﺮﻯ ﺇﻻ ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺭ ﺛﻢ ﻳﻨﻈﺮ ﻋﻦ ﺷﻤﺎﻟﻪ ﻓﻼ ﻳﺮﻯ ﺇﻻ
ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺭ ﻓﻠﻴﺘﻘﻴﻦ ﺃﺣﺪﻛﻢ ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺭ ﻭﻟﻮ ﺑﺸﻖ ﺗﻤﺮﺓ ﻓﺈﻥ ﻟﻢ
ﻳﺠﺪ ﻓﺒﻜﻠﻤﺔ ﻃﻴﺒﺔ).
Allah also Showed us that if a soul
will be given a chance, then the
best ibadat, that soul will aspire
given a short time with great
abundant reward is the Sadaqa.
This qualifies it for specification
among others.
Allah Said:
{ ﻭﺃﻧﻔﻘﻮﺍ ﻣﻦ ﻣﺎ ﺭﺯﻗﻨﺎﻛﻢ ﻣﻦ ﻗﺒﻞ ﺃﻥ ﻳﺄﺗﻲ ﺃﺣﺪﻛﻢ
ﺍﻟﻤﻮﺕ ﻓﻴﻘﻮﻝ ﺭﺏ ﻟﻮﻟﺎ ﺃﺧﺮﺗﻨﻲ ﺇﻟﻰ ﺃﺟﻞ ﻗﺮﻳﺐ
ﻓﺄﺻﺪﻕ ﻭﺃﻛﻦ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﺼﺎﻟﺤﻴﻦ (10) ﻭﻟﻦ ﻳﺆﺧﺮ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ
ﻧﻔﺴﺎ ﺇﺫﺍ ﺟﺎﺀ ﺃﺟﻠﻬﺎ ﻭﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﺧﺒﻴﺮ ﺑﻤﺎ ﺗﻌﻤﻠﻮﻥ {
]ﺍﻟﻤﻨﺎﻓﻘﻮﻥ10 :، 11 ]
(And spend something (in charity)
out of the substance which we
have bestowed on you, before
death should come to any of you
and He should say, “O My Lord!
why Didst Thou not give me respite
for a Little while? I should then
have given (largely) In charity, and
I should have been one of the
doers of good”. * But to no soul will
Allah grant respite when the time
appointed (for it) has come; and
Allah is well acquainted with (all)
that ye do.)
As for the night prayers:
The congregational Tarawih prayer
is supererogatory, but best prayed
in solitude except when there is
fear that people will not attend the
obligatory Isha prayer. However,
the better prayer that people
neglect is the pre-dawn nafl prayer.
When Umar – May Allah be
pleased with Him- initiated the
congregational Tarawih prayer, He
said something very important. He
said: This is a good initiative
however, that prayer they sleep
over it is better than the one they
pray i.e. in the early hours of the
night.”
The person that will attend the
early tarawih to keep the Sunnah
of the Sahaba alive in the early
hours of the night, then pray alone
or with his wife at home in the later
hours of the night before dawn –
When Allah Descends to Lower
Heaven- He only knows How- has
done the best. Because
supererogatory prayers done at
homes and not in congregations
are better rewarding and more
liable to be free of Riya. This is the
practice of the prophet – alaihis
Salam, the rightly guided caliphs
and fuqaha.
As for women, the best of the
prayers are at home, either
compulsory or supererogatory.
Never the less they are not
forbidden from mosques if the
appropriate conditions are met. If
there is no intermingling between
the two sexes in the way to the
mosque and in the mosque and the
way back home. That is why the
prophet- alaihis Salam, use to stay
put after congregational prayers so
that the female folks will return to
their homes before the men come
out of the masjid.
Al-Bukhari narrated from umm
Salama who said: “when the
messenger of Allah does the
Salam of ending prayers, the
women use stand up (to go) when
he finishes his Tasleem and he
stays put in his place for few
moments before he stands up. She
said: Allah knows better – that is
because so that the women will go
before any of the men would meet
up with them ”
In this modern times, it’s almost
impracticable, which makes the
home prayer for them the best if
not the most attainable alternative,
that is if only the face of Allah, is
the reason of the devotion.
May Allah See us through
Ramadan free of our sins and
iniquities and May Allah bring
peace, progress and prosperity to
our Nation worldwide. Ameen!

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