Did you know that the first 10 days of Dhul Hijjah are better than the last 10 days of Ramadan? Amongst the great days of Ibadah (worship) are the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah, which Allah has favoured over other days.
Ibn Abbas (رضي الله عنه) reported that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: "There are no days during which the righteous action is so pleasing to Allah than these days (i.e., the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah)." He was asked: "O Messenger of Allah, not even Jihad in the Cause of Allah?" He (ﷺ) replied, "Not even Jihad in the Cause of Allah, except in case one goes forth with his life and his property and does not return with either of it." (Bukhari, Book 9, Hadith 259)
This year [1439H], the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah is likely to start on Monday 13th August 2018, thus Eid-ul Adha is likely to be on Wednesday the 22nd August 2018, inshaAllah.
The above hadith, along with others indicates that these ten days are better than all other days of the year, with no exception. They are even better than the last ten days of Ramadan, but the last ten nights of Ramadan are better than the first ten nights of Dhul Hijjah, because they include Laylat ul-Qadr, which is better than a thousand months (Quran 97:3)
Virtues of these ten days include:
- Allah swears by things to signify their importance, and Allah has sworn by these ten days in the Holy Qur’an in Surah Al-Fajr, where He says: “By the Fajr, And the ten nights” (Quran 89:1-2). Early scholars which include Ibn Abbaas (رضي الله عنه) have stated that these 10 nights mentioned in the Qur’an are indeed the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah.
- The Prophet (ﷺ) has said that these 10 days are the best 10 days of the year, as mentioned in the hadith above (and in others).
- They are the best days to make remembrance of Allah in. It was narrated from Abdullah ibn Umar (رضي الله عنه) that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “There are no days that are greater before Allah or in which good deeds are more beloved to Him, than these ten days, so recite a great deal of Tahleel (Laa ilaaha illallaah), Takbeer (Allaahu Akbar) and Tahmeed (Alhumdulillaah) during them.” (Reported by Ahmad 7/224)
- They include the day of Arafah (9th Dhul Hijjah), in which Allah completed this religion of Islam. Fasting this day erases the sins of the previous year and the following year (minor sins only; as major sins require repentance too). The day of Arafah is likely to fall on Tuesday 21st August 2018 so make sure to fast on that day too, InshaAllah.
- They include the day of “The big Hajj”, which is Eid-ul Adha day (10th Dhul Hijjah), and this day is the greatest day of the whole year.
So, the Muslims should start these days with sincere repentance to Allah, then he should do a lot of righteous deeds in general, and he should pay attention to doing the following deeds:
Fasting first 9 days of Dhul Hijjah
It is recommended for the Muslim to fast on the first nine days of Dhul Hijjah, because the Prophet (ﷺ) encouraged us to do righteous deeds in the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah, and fasting is one of the best of deeds as mentioned in the hadith Qudsi: The Prophet (ﷺ) said, "(Allah said), 'Every good deed of son of Adam is for him except fasting; it is for Me, and I shall reward (the fasting person) for it.’ Verily, the smell of the mouth of a fasting person is better to Allah than the smell of musk". (Bukhari, Book 77, Hadith 142)
Furthermore, fasting on the Day of Arafah caries specific rewards as stated in the following hadith: Abu Qatadah (رضي الله عنه) reported: The Prophet (ﷺ) was asked about the observance of Saum (fasting) on the day of Arafah (9th of Dhul Hijjah). He said, "It is an expiation for the sins of the preceding year and the current year." (Muslim, Book 9, Hadith 260)