10 Ibadaat Survival Guide to Periods During Laylatul Qadr

Rabbi Zidnee Ilman
“My Lord! Increase me in knowledge.”

In Ramadān, your period isn’t just “that time of the month” anymore. Now we are in the month of all months. The month we have been anticipating to finally recharge our spiritual battery. Then it happens. And suddenly, we can no longer perform Taraweeh and regular prayers, fast with the rest of the family, and hold the Qur’an. And Allah-forbid it happens in the last 10 days!

Thinking in this way can really make you a Muslimah feeling down, and cause you to miss out on even more opportunities to build a closer relationship with Allah (Subhanahu wa ta’aala) . This is not bad luck that happened to us – Allah ordains everything, even a leaf falling from a tree. And He tells us,

“for every matter there is an appointed time given.”
{Surah Ar-Rad 13:38}

So then there must be Hekma, a divine wisdom from Allah, behind our menses and their timings. Seeing those around us going for Taraweeh and breaking their fasts doesn’t make it easy to stay positive. Perhaps you will even look at yourself and feel you are being deprived of gaining reward. Yes, prayer and fasting are now out of your plans for a few days this Ramadān – but here are 10 rewarding acts of worship that never should be. And the best part is, each has its reward with Allah.

1 – Connect with the Qur’an.
Your connection with the Qur’an does not need to come to a halt once your period starts. Actually, this connection could be what keeps you feeling close to Allah Subhanahu wa ta’aala when prayer and fasting can’t serve that purpose! There is no authentic evidence from the Qur’an or Sunnah forbidding women to memorize, listen to, study, or reflect on the Qur’an, so do not feel that you are prevented from doing so. Although there are opposing opinions of whether a menstruating woman should recite the Qur’an, the stronger evidence supports that it is permissible and that a woman should not be deprived of reciting it and earning her rewards. What is not part of the etiquette is for a menstruating woman to physically touch the mus’haf  (the original Arabic Qur’an). As Allah says,

“… which none can touch except the purified.”
{Surah al-Waaqi’ah 56: Ayaah 79}

So, you may choose to review previously memorized verses, memorize new ones, or just listen to recitations whilst letting the Qur’an enter and soften your heart. This is also a great time to hold a tafseer book, and deeply ponder on the meanings and lessons of the ayahs so they can beautifully be applied. This method may bring you much more benefit than holding the mus’haf and reading it alone, as many people may do with the intention of quickly completing it by the end of Ramadān! Just don’t abandon the Qur’an. Not in these days; in the month that Allah had sent it down to us. It is too great of a loss to let a week of Ramadān pass in which you have no connection with the Qur’an.

2 – Implement the Adhkar.
Self-check! Is your only remembrance (dhikr) of Allah in your salah? Many sisters tend to feel a sense of depression during the days of their menses, perhaps partly because they distance themselves from Allah (Subhanahu wa ta’aala). But when you implement the adhkar, you discover another source of connecting with Him that never gets cut off. Allah makes it clear to those who turn away from His remembrance,

“Indeed, he will have a depressed life, and We will gather him on the Day of Resurrection blind.”
{Surah Taha 20: Ayaah 124}

And instead, He gives glad tidings that,

“Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest.”
{Surah Ar-Rad 13: Ayaah 28}

It is then that sadness, emptiness, and inner-struggles are replaced with joy, tranquillity, and positivity. So wet your tongue with Subhan’Allah, Alhamdulillah, Allahu Akbar, and La ilaaha illa Allah! Also, get into the habit of saying adhkar al-sabaah (morning) wal-masaa (evening), as Allah says:

“O believers! Remember Allah as a frequent remembrance, and glorify Him morning and evening.”
{Surah al-Ahzaab, 33: Ayaat 41-42}

This is a strong shield of protection from any evil and negativity. Try it on a daily basis, and see its effects on your overall serenity!
Tip: Do not trust that you will remember Allah on your own without working to make it a habit. Put reminders on your phone. Make it a daily must. The morning and evening adhkar are great because their daily routine helps keep you consistent.

3 – Feed the Fasting.
You don’t need to be a great cook. Aim to serve the dates or water at iftaar time when your family, friends or guests are breaking their fast.The Prophet (SalAllahu alayhi wa Sallam) said,

“Whoever feeds a fasting person will have a reward like that of the fasting person, without any reduction in his reward.”

 Don’t forget to be sweet and sincere with your ways – take a date and put it directly in your mother’s mouth, or your spouse’s, to break her or his fast. Can you not feel the mercy of Allah in this very moment?
The Prophet also encouraged this act by expressing how even a tiny amount of food or drink given to the fasting person is great in the eyes of Allah, saying,

“Allah will give you the reward of feeding a fasting person even if you were to give him just a sip of milk, a date, or a sip of water. He who feeds a fasting person until he is full, Allah will make him drink out of my river, a sip of which will never allow him to be thirsty until he enters Jannah.”

Suggestion: Buy a box of dates and distribute them at a gathering of Muslims, such as at a masjid, for the sake of none but Allah. Receive the same reward as all those who were fasting. This is one of the easiest, almost effortless ways to gain reward, and all it takes is a self-reminder!

4 – Work to Serve Others.
Use your extra body fuel as a source of relief by taking on some extra work around your household on behalf of those fasting. Serving your parents is of highest priority. If your mother is cleaning, take on those chores to free up some of her time for ibadah and resting while she is low on energy. Allah (Subhanahu wa ta’aala) tells us that our service for humanity is what gives our Ummah its great status:

“O people of Islam, You are the best people ever raised for the good of mankind because you have been raised to serve others…”
{Surah Al-Imran 3: Ayaah 111}

“The best of people are those that bring most benefit to the rest of mankind.”

And He tells us of His great recompense for our services, promising “Whoever relieves a believer of distress in this world, Allah will relieve him of some of the distress of the Day of Resurrection. Whoever makes things easy for those who are in difficulty, Allah will make things easy for him in this world and in the next… Allah will help the slave so long as the slave helps his brother.”

5 – Make Du’a.
Allah is al-Samee’ (The All-Hearing) and wants to hear from you! There is no reason to stop making dua during menstruation. Take this time to learn His names, so when you use them to call upon Him, your duas are more effective and beloved by Him. The Prophet (salAllahu aleyhi wa Sallam) advised Aisha to say (especially important in the last 10 days of Ramadān), “Allahumma innaka ‘afuwwun, tuhibbul-‘afwa, fa’fu ‘anni (Oh Allah, You are The Pardoner, You love to pardon, so pardon me.)”
He also said,

“When Ramadān comes, the Doors of Mercy are opened…”

 Now your duas will more likely be responded to, and for the forgiveness you seek to be granted by Allah’s mercy.
If you feel unsure of what to ask for, at least hold on to this one powerful dua, as advised by the Prophet, that literally asks for everything you need in the Dunya and Akhirah:

“Our Lord! Give us in this world that which is good and in the Hereafter that which is good, and save us from the torment of the Fire!”
{Surat Al-Baqarah 2: Ayaah 201}

Remember: No believer makes du’a and it is wasted. Have full hope that they will be answered in the best of ways!

6 – Clean up your Local Masjid.
Masha’Allah. Now that the masjid in your community is flooded with Muslims and its resources are being used much more, it is probably in a messier state than ever. Stay behind to do some clean up!

The Messenger of Allah (saws) commanded that mosques should be built among the houses (i.e., in each neighbourhood), and that they should be cleaned and perfumed.”

This is a great act of ibadah to carry out during your period – it gives you a purpose to still head for the masjid, and most cleaning can be done while others are praying. If people fail to notice or appreciate your work, continue for the sake of Allah. Be the one to fulfill a great deed so discreetly that it makes a difference for the people even without their realization. And Allah is Ash-Shakur (The Most Appreciative), and always shows His appreciation with great reward.As the Prophet said,

“Whosoever removes adhaa (anything repulsive or harmful) from the masjid, Allah will make a house for him in Jannah.”

 Remember to stay sincere in your intention without complaining, but appreciate the fact that the masjid is being benefitted from. Following a deen in which cleanliness is half our faith, this is not a degrading job to look down upon. You can be the maintainer of Allah’s place of worship.
Ideas: Vacuum carpets, clean up kitchen, arrange Qur’an and bookshelves, fold prayer rugs, collect garbage, print reminders to keep the masjid clean.

7 – Visit the Sick.
A sick person may find themselves not visited as often in Ramadān. He or she would likely be feeling extreme boredom, and could really use a psychological boost and the company of caring people. So if you get the opportunity t0 visit during your few days break, take it. It will make all the difference to them!
On Judgment Day, Allah Subhanahu wata’aala will say:

“O son of Adam, I was ill and you did not visit Me.’ The man will say, ‘O Lord, how could I visit You when You are the Lord of the worlds?’ He will say, ‘Do you not know that My slave so-and-so was ill and you did not visit him? Do you not know that if you had visited him, you would have found Me with him?

This act is so important that the Prophet (SalAllahu aleyhi waSallam) said it is one of the five duties a Muslim owes to his brother (to visit him when he is sick). The virtue is that,

“When the Muslim visits his (sick) Muslim brother, he is harvesting the fruits of Paradise until he returns.”

Note: The sunnah of visiting the sick is not limited to those you know, but includes strangers and non-Muslims as well.

8 – Gain Knowledge.
“The learned are the heirs of the Prophets…”, and this is because our Prophets did not leave behind money, but rather only left behind knowledge. And whoever takes it, takes an abundant wealth. This same hadith also tells us the virtue of gaining knowledge:

“If anyone travels on a road in search of knowledge, Allah will cause him to travel on one of the roads of Paradise.”

Today’s advancing technology has made this so easy alhamdulillah! Stay productive during menstruation by listening to online lectures, reading beneficial articles, or registering for online courses (check out the great variety offered at Islamic Online University). If it’s an opportunity in your community, gain knowledge while interacting directly with other Muslims by attending halaqas, lectures and seminars, registering in local Islamic classes, or picking out a great read.

Remember: Once you’ve learned it, teach it! Afterall, one of the only two types of people we should be jealous of is “a man whom Allah has blessed with knowledge and he teaches it.”[Bukhari] The knowledge you teach will outlast your own life and remain an ongoing source of good deeds from your grave. Who says you can’t do something as great as establishing yourself a sadaqa-e-jaariyah while on your period?

9 – Give D’awah.
D’awah includes calling non-Muslims to Islam, and giving reminders and encouragement to your family and fellow Muslims. Allah (Subhanahu wa ta’aala) says,

“Invite to the Way of your Lord with wisdom and fair preaching, and argue with them in a way that is better.”
{Surah An-Nahl 16: Ayaah 125}

Guidance is just beautiful and has a special sweetness in Ramadān when the gates of Mercy are open! You don’t need to have the greatest knowledge to call others to Islam. It’s very likely that you know or remember something that someone else does not know or has forgotten.The Prophet (SalAllahu aleyhi waSallam) tells us,

“Convey (my teachings) to the people even if it were a single sentence”

Many of us feel that our imaan is too low, our good deeds too little, and our sins have strayed us from the path ourselves. But this does not exempt you from the obligation of d’awah. So call others towards good, while also working towards it yourself. It could be through your efforts that Allah guides a non-Muslim to the path, or a Muslim to become better practicing.

10 – Enjoin the Good.
Although you may be craving to pray taraweeh and fast, do not let your feelings prevent you from enjoining others to good during this time. Be aware; sometimes it happens subconsciously, that we deprive others from specific blessings because we can’t take part in them ourselves. All it takes to get back in the driver’s seat of that khair wagon is to remember that you will get the same reward as those whom you drive towards good. Now this is the right version of selfishness!
It is because of this quality that Allah (Subhanahu wa ta’aala) honors us, saying

“You are the best nation produced [as an example] for mankind. You enjoin Al-Ma’roof (what is right) and forbid Al-Munkar (what is wrong), and you believe in Allah.”
{Surah al-‘Imraan 3: Ayaah 110}

TIPS for keeping up these 10 great acts of ibaadah during your menses

♦ Stay positive. Expect reward: Allah lifted an obligation off your shoulder. Consider your menses a rahma (mercy), and a break from committing to 5 daily prayers. You now have more flexibility for other acts of ibadah! If you expect your 5-7 days of menses to be useless, they will be useless. But when you expect the best from Allah, you will find yourself performing more good deeds knowing that they carry reward.

Allah said, “Whatever My servant assumes of Me, that is how I will treat him.”

Make these expectations and enthusiasm a priority in your Ramadān spirit!

♦ Don’t belittle any good deed:

“Do not belittle any good deed, even meeting your brother with a cheerful face”

And remember, an act of ibadah in Ramadān is multiplied by 70 times – even the smallest deed becomes a great one!

♦ Stay away from prohibited matters: 
Just because you are not fasting, it does not mean you are free to commit haraam acts. When you have a desire to do something displeasing to Allah, recognize it as an opportunity to sacrifice that small and worthless wish of yours for something far better of His. As the Prophet said,

“Indeed you will not leave anything for the sake of Allah except that Allah will replace it with something better than it.”

Now is the time – the above ibadaat will help you keep busy, strengthen your taqwa, and avoid wasting precious time during your break! Renew your intentions and make sure to carry out these ibadaat for the sake of Allah. If you choose to leave ibadah all together, this is where you start to feel sad about your situation. And even worse, miss out on an immense amount of reward. Don’t let the weak whispers of shaytan or the laziness of your own self lead to such deprivation.
You are a 24/7 slave of Allah; meaning your ibadah is all about action and it encompasses your entire lifestyle. You are a Muslimah; embrace your womanhood, it is a blessing! Alhamdulillah!

Authored by ♦ Sister Ray
Edited & Drafted by ♦ Sana Abdul Samad

Republished from The Ideal Muslimah

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