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10 Tips for the First 10 Days of Dhul Hijjah
We are eagerly awaiting the month of Dhul Hijjah, ready to embrace the best 10 days of the year. Many of us miss the “spiritual high” of Ramadan, so this holy month is a wonderful opportunity to re-energise our worship.
This time is a celebration of our faith in Allah (swt), reminding us that no matter how hard the times, our Maker (swt) always has a plan for us.
It’s also an opportunity for us to perform lots of good deeds that will be generously rewarded:
“There are no days on which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days” [Bukhari].
And, even though physical Hajj may yet again not be an option this year because we have to protect our health, which Islam teaches us to prioritise above all, there are still many opportunities for us to reap the benefits of these blessed days. Here are 10 tips for the first 10 days:
One significant blessing of this month is the precious sacrifice of cattle in the name of Allah (swt). The word “Qurbani” means “to approach” in Arabic – through animal sacrifice, we approach Allah (swt) by reaffirming our faith in Him. Qurbani is Fard (obligatory) for every Zakat-eligible Muslim.
This year, choose both quantity and quality. Why not follow the Sunnah of the Prophet and sacrifice an extra animal for those who can’t afford to perform Qurbani?
‘The Prophet (saw) used to sacrifice two rams, and I also sacrifice two rams’ (Bukhari).
By donating your Qurbani through Aryana Aid (link to order page), you ensure your sacrifice will be performed in line with the Sunnah.
2. Make time for reading the Quran
There is no greater gift than reading the word of God.
“The one who is proficient in the recitation of the Qur’an will be with the honourable and obedient scribes (angels) and he who recites the Qur’an and finds it difficult to recite, doing his best to recite it in the best way possible, will have a double reward” [Bukhari & Muslim].
This Dhul Hijjah is a great opportunity to take more time to recite more Quran, read Tafsir (commentary), and join online classes to deepen your Islamic knowledge.
Fasting is a way of purification. It is Sunnah for us to fast during the first nine days of Dhul Hijjah, especially on the holy Day of Arafah. It is reported that Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) made fasting on this day a lifelong practice.
“Fasting the day of Arafah expiates the sins of two years: the past one and the coming one” [Muslim].
4. Recite tasbeeh, tahmeed, tahleel and takbeer abundantly
This month is a chance for us to glorify the name of Allah (swt) at any place and any time. Are you at work, on the street in your car? There is no wrong time to praise the name of our Creator, even if we have to whisper it.
“That they may witness things that are of benefit to them (reward of Hajj in the Hereafter and also some worldly gain from trade), and mention the Name of Allah on appointed days, over the beast of cattle that He has provided for them (for sacrifice)” [Surah Al-Haj:28].
5. Perform Istighfar – Ask Allah (swt) for forgiveness
This is the second holiest time after Ramadan, so if not now, then when? We have all sinned, but Allah (swt) always gives us a chance to repent for our faulty actions and replenish ourselves with goodness.
A beautiful Hadith says: “O son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you.”
6. Up your Sadaqah game
These first ten days of Dhul Hijjah are a wonderful opportunity for Sadaqah and we can expect multiplied rewards for our good deeds. This year, our acts of kindness are more needed than ever, so this is a good time to up our Sadaqah game and focus on helping the community.
“There are no days in which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days.” The people asked, ‘Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah?’ He said, ‘Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah, except in the case of a man who went out, giving himself and his wealth up for the cause (of Allah), and came back with nothing’” [Sahih Al-Bukhari]
7. Let go of your Nafs (Ego)
Have you fallen back into negative habits after Ramadan? This is the time to get rid of them completely.
Let yourself be inspired by Prophet Ibrahim (AS) and renounce your ego for your number One – Allah.Trust that Allah (swt) is helping you overcome any shortcomings, showing you the way to purification. Use this powerful month to create better habits. Get rid of small negative behaviours every day.
8. Honour the Day or Arafah
The 9th day of Dhul Hijjah, this is the most important day of this blessed month. People are encouraged to fast, say their prayers and give Sadaqah on this day as it holds more rewards for such good habits than any other day.
Our Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said: “There is no day on which Allah (swt) frees people from the Fire more so than on the day of ‘Arafah’” [Muslim].
Do you want millions of your sins to be forgiven? Make sure you don’t miss out on the benefits of this day.
9. Renew your Taqwa (God-consciousness) after Ramadan
We have all tried to maintain our high levels of Taqwa (God-consciousness) after Ramadan, but daily life has certainly distracted us from time to time. Have you been affected by the recent events around the world?
Allah (swt) is the only one we can turn to in such times of distress. And this is the perfect time to consolidate our relationship with Him and revitalise our Taqwa.
Allah’s Messenger ﷺ pointed to his heart and said: “Taqwa is here!” [Muslim].
10. Share your experiences with your ummah
As important as learning the word of Allah (swt) is sharing your experiences with other people. This year, why not share your positive stories about this month with your children, friends, and family?
“Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward” [Muslim].
Book your Qurbani with Aryana Aid and feed some of the poorest people in the world.