Many people misunderstand the true nature of fasting, and they make it an occasion for eating and drinking, making special delicacies and using their daylight watching shows on satellite TV. They make preparations for that long before Ramadaan, lest they miss out on some food or prices go up. They prepare by buying food, preparing drinks and looking at the satellite TV guide so they can choose which shows to follow and which to ignore during Ramadan. They are truly unaware of the real nature of fasting the month of Ramadaan; they take worship and piety out of the month and make it just for their bellies and their eyes.
Others are aware of the real nature of fasting in the month of Ramadaan, so they start to prepare from Sha’baan, and some of them even start before that. If you are not one of them you have opportunity to reload your spirituality within the remaining short periods. Among the best ways of reloading the month of Ramadaan are:
01 –Sincere repentance
This is obligatory at all times, but because of the mercy of the great and blessed month, it is even more important to hasten to repent from sins between you and your Lord, and between you and other people by giving them their rights, so that when the blessed month ends you may be peaceful with acts of worship and have a clean heart and. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And all of you beg Allaah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful”
It was narrated from al-Agharr ibn Yasaar (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “O people, repent to Allaah for I repent to Him one hundred times each day.” Narrated by Muslim (2702).
02 –Du’aa’ (supplication)
It was narrated from some of the salaf that they used to pray to Allah for six months that they would live until Ramadaan, then they would pray for five months afterwards that He would accept it from them.
The Muslim should ask his Lord to let him live until Ramadaan with a strong religious commitment and good physical health, and he should ask Him to help him obey Him during the month, and ask Him to accept his good deeds from Him.
03 – Rejoicing during the blessed month and not to show weakness.
The arrival of Ramadaan is one of the great blessings that Allah bestows upon His Muslim slave, because Ramadaan is one of the occasions of good in which the gates of Paradise are opened and the gates of Hell are closed. It is the month of the Qur’aan and of decisive battles in the history of our religion.
Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Say: ‘In the Bounty of Allaah, and in His Mercy (i.e. Islam and the Qur’aan); —therein let them rejoice.’ That is better than what (the wealth) they amass”
04 – Seeking knowledge in order to be able to follow the rulings on fasting and to understand the virtues of Ramadaan.
05 – Hastening to complete any tasks that may distract the Muslim from doing acts of worship.
06 – Sitting with one’s family members – wife and children – to tell them of the rulings on fasting and encourage the young ones to fast.
07 – Preparing some books which can be read at home or given to the imam of the mosque to read to the people during Ramadaan.
08 – Reading Qur’aan
Salamah ibn Kuhayl said: It was said that Sha’baan was the month of the Qur’aan readers.
When Sha’baan began, ‘Amr ibn Qays would close his shop and free his time for reading Qur’aan.
Abu Bakr al-Balkhi said: The month of Rajab is the month for planting, the month of Sha’baan is the month of irrigating the crops, and the month of Ramadaan is the month of harvesting the crops.
He also said: The likeness of the month of Rajab is that of the wind, the likeness of Sha’baan is that of the clouds and the likeness of Ramadaan is that of the rain; whoever does not plant and sow in Rajab, and does not irrigate in Sha’baan, how can he reap in Ramadaan? Now Rajab has passed, so what will you do in this month of Ramadan, if you are seeking Ramadan blessings? This is how your Prophet and the early generations of the ummah were in this blessed month, so what will you do?
09 – Charity
Muslim should give charity even from the small you have. Narrated Abu Huraira
The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Allah will give shade, to seven, on the Day when there will be no shade but His. (These seven persons are) a just ruler, a youth who has been brought up in the worship of Allah (i.e. worships Allah sincerely from childhood), a man whose heart is attached to the mosques (i.e. to pray the compulsory prayers in the mosque in congregation), two persons who love each other only for Allah’s sake and they meet and part in Allah’s cause only, a man who refuses the call of a charming woman of noble birth for illicit intercourse with her and says: I am afraid of Allah, a man who gives charitable gifts so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given (i.e. nobody knows how much he has given in charity), and a person who remembers Allah in seclusion and his eyes are then flooded with tears.”
May Allah ease our affairs both in this world and hereafter. Aameen.
And Allah knows best.