“ O ye who believe, fasting has been prescribed upon you as it was prescribed upon those before you, so that ye may learn self-restraint”. (2:183)
Ramadan is the month of Allah full of worship, forgiveness, training and blessings. This is the month which Lailat-ul-Qadar falls, which Allah says “it is better than thousand months”. The most admirable and beneficial aspect of this month is the training and preparation part, as it prepares all Muslims in such a way that they can live their lives according to the Sharia for the rest of the year. To maximize the blessings of Ramadan, we need to prepare for the month and chalk out a plan for how to spend the month.
Things which are emphasized to do during Ramadan are Fasting, Zikr, Salat, helping the poor, reciting Quran and so on. Allah’s messenger (s.a.w.) said, “Search for the night of Qadr in the odd nights of the last ten nights of Ramadan”. Aisha narrated, “I asked what should I do if I find the night of Qadr”. He answered, “Pray to Allah”
There are more things to do in Ramadan including Umrah, and offer every prayer with Jamat as according to Ahadith, praying in congregation is much more rewarding than offering it alone. The Prophet Muhammad PBUH once said, ‘He who performs Fajr Salat with Jamaat and remains seated in the same place while engaging in Dhikr (remembrance of Allah) until after sunrise and thereafter performs two Rakaats Nafl Salat (Ishraaq), he will obtain the Thawaab (reward) of one Hajj and one ‘Umrah.’ (Tirmidhi)
Charity during Ramadan has tremendous rewards while giving it generously is Sunnah, as once our beloved Prophet PBUH said that “Charity is due on every joint bone of the body of every one. Every utterance of Allah’s Glorification (i.e., saying Subhan Allah) is an act of charity, and every utterance of His Praise (i.e., saying Al-hamdu lillah) is an act of charity and every utterance of declaration of His Greatness (i.e., saying La ilaha illAllah) is an act of charity; and enjoining Ma’roof (good) is an act of charity, and forbidding Munkar (evil) is an act of charity, and two Rak`ah Duha prayers which one performs in the forenoon is equal to all this (in reward).”
This does not mean sharing and helping other is not charity, but these are also forms of charity and if one cannot help others with money and wealth then he has other options so that he is not left behind from obtaining the benefits of this holy month.
Itekaf is also a special form of worship mostly offered during the month of Ramadan. Our Prophet PBUH used to practice during the last ten days of Ramazan. Taraweeh can be offer alone or in congregation as both of them are Sunnah. Muhammad PBUH sometimes used to offer it in congregation and sometimes alone at home. However, the night prayers have countless rewards during the nights of Ramadan. These prayers are easy to offer during Ramadan as everyone wake up for the Meal at dawn and if one can manage to rise one hour earlier then he or she can comfortably offer these prayers.
However, never forget “Dua”. God commands us for Dua and says that it is his duty to accept Dua. Dua is the key to success, forgiveness and blessings. Keep on asking Allah and never focus on the results as the result is Allah’s duty. May be it was not fulfilled because it is not in our favor, Allah knows what is better for us. Dua itself is a blessing weather fulfilled or not.
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