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Muslim fasting month of Ramadhan enters a crucial phase

The Muslim fasting holy month of Ramadhan enters the last crucial ten days Friday in which Muslims belief it’s the period that conceals the Night of Power when the holy Koran was first revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him).

Ramadhan is one of the five pillars of Islam in which Muslims abstain from food, drinks and bodily pleasures between dawn to dusk for a 30-day period and this year the fast started on June 6 and expected to end on July 5.

“And what will explain to thee what the Night of Power is? The Night of Power is better than a thousand month,” (Koran 97:2-3).

The Night of Power is an honour and special gift to the Muslim community and the prophet’s mission began in the month of Ramadhan on that Night.

Muslims further believe that the Power implies measurement, that all the events of the year will occur in accordance to the exact measurement of what is in the knowledge of Allah as stated in the holy Koran “Verily, all things have We created in proportion and measure,” (Koran, 54:49).

Muslim faithful stream to the mosques at night in the last crucial ten days to devote themselves to special deeds and say special Ramadhan nightly prayer (Tahajjud).

The Tahajjud is a special Islamic prayer which is recommended (but not required) for all Muslims. The Tahajjud is prayed after Isha (the required nightly prayer) and before Fajr (the required Morning Prayer). If possible, it is most desirable to perform the Tahajjud between midnight and Fajr.

The exact date of the Night is however concealed thus Muslims double up their efforts in the last days but there is evidence that the night comes on the odd nights.

In a Hadith (Sayings) of the prophet quotes ”Seek it on the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadhan.” (Vol.3:1290).

The Prophet said: “Whoever prays during the night of Qadr with faith and hoping for its reward will have all of his previous sins forgiven.” (Bukhari and Muslim recorded from Abu Huraira).

The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to single these nights out for worship and the performance of good deeds.

Religious leaders who spoke to KNA in Mombasa said the last ten nights are very special and called on the faithful to strive hard in worship during these last days of Ramadhan in a way that they did not strive at any other times. The end of Ramadhan culminates in the festival of Eid-ul-Fitr which is a holiday to mark the Islamic month of fasting.

Muslims in the coastal city have appealed for enhanced security for those venturing out at night to offer the nightly special prayers in mosques.

A cross section of Mombasa residents who wish to offer the night special prayers in mosques told KNA that they want enhanced security for those venturing out at night.

Kenya National Muslim Advisory Council (KEMNAC) chairperson Sheikh Juma Ngao has called on the police to carry out night patrols to ensure faithful attend prayers without hitches.

The cleric said more police officers should be deplored to carry out night patrols to ensure faithful attend prayers unhindered.

Sheikh Ngao said during the last ten days of Ramadan, some men and women commit to itikaf (seclusion) in the mosque.

He said they detach themselves from the materialistic world and dedicate all their time to get closer to Allah through prayers and supplication.

Sheikh Ngao said during the last third of Ramadan, one should read more Qur’an and remember Allah more often, even constantly.

Itikaf can only be observed in a mosque and not in a prayer room in a house as it is not considered a mosque.

Sheikh Aboud Mohamad said for Muslims, the last ten days should be a time to perfect one’s fast and avoid anything that may break it.

He said it is a time to give more charity and to settle disputes and forgive one another adding that it is also a period for soul searching, evaluating one’s life, supplicating, and asking forgiveness.

By Hussein Abdullahi

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