ḤADĪTH OF THE DAY

Al- Ḥakam Ibnul-A'raj said, "I came to Ibn-'Abbās , who he was bolstered on his cloak at Zamzam, and said, 'Tell me which day is the Day of 'Āshūrā' (2) so that I fast it.' He replied, 'When you see the crescent (3) of [the month of] Muharram, count [the days] then begin fasting from the ninth day (4).' I asked, 'Is this how Muhammad, peace and blessings of God be upon him, used to fast ['Āshūrā']?' He confirmed, 'yes.'" Footnotes: 1. The well located in the vicinity of the Sanctified House of God, the Ka'bah, where the prophet Ishmael's mother, Hagar, found water under her son's feet. The well produces water to this day. 2. The day on which prophet Moses used to fast to give thanks to God for saving the Children of Israel from their enemy. Fasting on the Day of 'Ashūrā' is optional. However, the Prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him, said that the reward for fasting on that day is the expiation of sins committed during the year leading up to it. 3. The appearance of the crescent signals the beginning of the month. 4. The majority of scholars consider the Day of 'Āshūrā' to be the tenth of Muharram. Ibn-'Abbās also narrated another hadīth clearly identifying the tenth of Muharram as the Day of Āshūrā'. However, the Jews of Madīnah used to fast on that day long before the arrival of the Prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him. In order to distinguish the Muslims from them, the Prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him, decided to fast an extra day the following year; only he did not live long enough to do so. In which case, he would indeed have started to fast the morning of the ninth of Muharram, as indicated by Ibn-'Abbās.

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Prophet Muhammad's traditions and teachings are considered to be the second source of legislation and guidance in Islām after the Qur'ān. By resorting to the Prophet's own words, the seeker of knowledge guarantees an authentic and unbiased insight into the world of Islām. Muhammad's teachings embody what is perhaps one of the most needed messages, in a world battered by conflict, blinded by prejudices and grieved with the absence of mercy and tolerance. Despite the many ambitious attempts to preserve Muhammad's precious legacy, there are only partial translations available on the Internet.

 

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