[Updated 2 May 2021]
Ramadan is the most blessed month of the year for Muslims; the month where Allah has promised tremendous benefits for us to reap. And in this special month, there is one night in particular that stands out - Lailatul Qadr (the Night of Power or the Night of Decree). This night is one of such divine status and importance, but do you know why? Here are 7 things that make Lailatul Qadr special, and what you can do to make the best of this special night (including the doa to recite for Lailatul Qadr!)
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1. The reason behind Lailatul Qadr
Rasulullah (ﷺ) showed his sincere care for us in a myriad of ways. There is a hadith in the Mutawwa Malik that narrates that the
Prophet was shown the lifespans of the ummah (people) that came before him which were much longer compared to his ummah. He was saddened by the shorter time his ummah had as they would not be able to do as many good deeds as the earlier ummah that came before them. And so, Allah SWT, the Most Merciful, blessed his ummah with Lailatul Qadr, in which we can earn significant rewards.
2. The incredible rewards of this night
On the night of Lailatur Qadr, Allah rewards tremendous benefits that far outweigh any other night. The rewards of doing a deed on the night of Lailatul Qadr is better than 1000 months (that amounts to 83 years and 4 months!). As mentioned in the Quran:
"The Night of Decree is better than a thousand months." [Surah Al-Qadr, Verse 3]
To bring it into context, the average life expectancy of a person is roughly 75 - 80 years. So Lailatul Qadr is an opportunity to receive more rewards than you would earn in your entire lifetime! And given that this night happens once every Ramadan, that means you have the opportunity to multiply that even many more times over, insyaAllah ☺️
3. Visitors from the heavens
On Lailatul Qadr,
angels descend to the earth. They give greetings to the believers, pray and remember Allah with them and say “Amin” to their supplications. The Night Of Power is such an important and divine night that a whole surah in the Quran is dedicated to it (Surah Al-Qadr). In this surah, Allah SWT says:
"The Night of Decree is better than a thousand months. The angels and the Spirit descend therein by permission of their Lord for every matter. Peace it is until the emergence of dawn.” [Surah Al-Qadr, Verses 3 - 5]
As such, one of the signs of Lailatul-Qadr is said to be that on the morning after that night, the sun will be bright and clear, but the rays of the sunlight will not be as visible. This is due to the wings of the angels that are blocking the rays of sunlight? The night of Lailatul Qadr is also said to be one that's calm, neither hot nor cold.
4. Forgiveness for all past transgressions
Abu Hurairah r.a. narrates that the Prophet (ﷺ) said:
“Whoever stands (in the voluntary night of prayer in Ramadan) out of faith and in hopes of attaining reward, will have his previous sins forgiven. And whoever spends the night of Lailatul Qadr in prayer out of faith and in hopes of attaining reward, will have his previous sins forgiven.” [Sunan an-Nasa’i]
As humans, we tend to err in small and big ways. As long as we are on this earth, we tend to commit sins (just think of what we have done with our eyes throughout the day). This special night is the night where we are given the opportunity to have all our sins forgiven. How amazing is that? ?
5. The supplications you can make during this divine night
It was narrated from 'Aishah r.a.h that she once asked Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) what she should say in supplication if she encountered Lailatur Qadr. And he had replied to say the following:
اللَّهُمَّ إِنَّكَ عَفُوٌّ تُحِبُّ الْعَفْوَ فَاعْفُ عَنِّي
Allahumma innaka 'afuwwun tuhibbul-'afwa, fa'fu 'anni
Meaning: O Allah, You are Forgiving and love forgiveness, so forgive me
Besides including the dua above, you can also recite a zikir that is especially popular in our region during Ramadan. Salam Al-Farisi had narrated that Rasulullah (ﷺ) said:
"O people! When the great, blessed month (Ramadan) comes to you, do lots of these four acts in it. Two acts with which you would please your Lord and two acts with which you cannot do without. As for the two which please your Lord, they are the testimony that there is no God but Allah and the seeking of His forgiveness. As for the two acts that you cannot do without, you should seek paradise from your Lord and seek protection from hell fire."
Based on the hadith above, we can recite this zikir repeatedly throughout Ramadan:
(x3)أشْهَدُ أن لا إلهَ إلا الله أسْتَغْفِرُ الله نسأَلُكَ الجنَّةَ ونَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنْ النَّار
Ash-hadu an laa ilaha illaAllah, astaghfiruAllah, nas-alu-ka-al-jannata, wa na-u’zubika mi-nan-nar (x3)
I bear witness that there is no god but Allah and I seek forgiveness from Allah. We ask You for paradise and seek your protection from the hell fire.
(x3) اللَّهُمَّ إِنَّكَ عَفُوٌّ تُحِبُّ الْعَفْوَ فَاعْفُ عَنِّا
Allahum-ma in-naka ‘a-fuw-wun tu-hib-bul-‘af-wa fa’ fu ‘an-naa (x3)
O Allah, You are Forgiving and love forgiveness, so forgive me.
6. The exact date of Lailatul Qadr is His secret
Is it the night of 25th
? 29th ? There are differing opinions as to when Lailatul Qadr is. Most scholars predicted it will fall on an odd night during the last 10 nights of Ramadan, based on the hadith
by ‘Aishah r.a.h: Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said,
"Search for the Night of Qadr in the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan." [Bukhari]
There are many blessings behind the secret of not knowing when exactly the night is. Similar to the secret of when the end of time is, and when we will take our last breath. Making it a secret actually allows us to always give our all in doing good deeds (for example: seeking for forgiveness, supplicating, zikir, reading the Qur’an and standing up for prayers)☺️
Even our best example, Rasulullah (ﷺ) worked very hard on the last 10 days of Ramadan. As seen from the hadith by Aishah r.a.h:
"From the start of the last ten days of Ramadan, the Prophet (ﷺ) used to tighten his waist belt (i.e. work harder) and used to pray the whole night, and used to keep his family awake for the prayers." [Bukhari].
But while we seek this night, it is important to understand that the aim of Lailatul Qadr is not to search for the night but to work hard for it, whenever it may fall.
7. Chasing the night or chasing the owner of the night? At the end of the day, we have to understand that Allah SWT is the owner of the night, Master of the Universe, and affords to give anything to anyone. As we motivate ourselves to seek Lailatul Qadr, we must also
be aware that Allah SWT can give rewards beyond this night and beyond this month as He wants. At the end of the day, what matters most is for us to seek His pleasure (Mardhaatillah) in all our actions.
We hope that Allah would accept our deeds in this blessed month, and allow us to meet the special night of Lailatul Qadr. May we be among those whose doa is accepted, our sins forgiven, and our taqwa
increased. Most importantly, may we be able to be istiqamah and become better versions of ourselves this Ramadan and beyond. Amin!
This article is an opinion piece written by Uztazah Dhania Raihana.