‘Rajab’ means ‘to respect’, which reflects the fact that it is haram to fight during this month. Rajab is one of the four sacred months, and it is believed that Allah (SWT) designated it to ensure Muslims could perform Umrah without being harmed or attacked. The other three sacred months are Muharram, Dhul Qa’dah, and Dhul Hijjah.
In 2023, Rajab will begin on 23 January and end on 20 February 2023.
Several significant events occurred during the sacred month of Rajab. During this month, Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) parents got married and the Prophet (PBUH) was conceived.
It was also during this month, on the 13th day of Rajab, that Ali (RA) was born, who was a close companion of the prophet (PBUH) and who became his son-in-law after marrying the Prophet’s (PBUH) daughter, Fatima (RA).
The Night Journey and Ascension (‘Al Isra’ Wal Mi’raj) also occurred during this month, which was an extremely significant event. This was where the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) travelled from Makkah to Jerusalem on the Buraq and, from there, ascended to heaven to meet Allah (SWT), who gave him and the Muslims 50 daily prayers to perform. When descending from heaven, the Prophet (PBUH) met Musa (AS), who was sure that the Muslims could not complete 50 prayers a day. His knowledge came from being a Prophet, so he knew what his followers could and could not handle. Musa (AS) told him to go back and ask Allah (SWT) to reduce the prayers, and they were reduced, but again, Musa (AS) told Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) to ask for the daily prayers to be reduced.
This carried on until it was reduced to five daily prayers, at which point, the Prophet (PBUH) did not want to ask for a further reduction. A voice said, “The prayers have been reduced to five, but they will be rewarded as though they were fifty.” This should encourage Muslims to pray five times a day and not rush prayers.
During Rajab, it is recommended to increase our Ibadah (worship) since it is a sacred month. We can do this by reciting more Qur’an, praying voluntary prayers, making up missed prayers and fasts, caring for the sick, and seeking forgiveness from Allah (SWT) through dua. Specific duas can be read, and your own duas hold a lot of power in this month.
Fasting in this month is also a good act of worship and helps to prepare for the coming month of Ramadan, whereby fasting is obligatory. Some Muslims fast on the 27th of Rajab, which is said to be the night of Al-Isra' Wal-Mir'aj. This is an optional fast and holds the same reward as fasting any other day in Rajab. Therefore, it is not specifically encouraged to fast on this day, but some Muslims practice this.
Giving charity throughout the year is sunnah and encouraged but giving charity during the month of Rajab is more virtuous because it is a sacred month.
Donate to UKIM during Rajab to support the needy and vulnerable around the world, from orphans and widows to refugees.
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