The Reality and Virtue of the Days of the Month of Rajab
The month of Rajab is a sacred month
In the month of Rajab, among these four blessed months, which Allah the Almighty has bestowed with greater respect, honor, reverence, virtue, and significance since the creation of the universe, the details of which are as follows:
The virtue of Allah, the Most High, has granted greatness and sanctity to four months out of the twelve months of the year, as Allah, the Most High, mentions in Surah At-Tawbah:
إِنَّ عِدَّةَ ٱلشُّهُورِ عِندَ ٱللَّهِ ٱثْنَا عَشَرَ شَهْرًۭا فِى كِتَـٰبِ ٱللَّهِ يَوْمَ خَلَقَ ٱلسَّمَـٰوَٰتِ وَٱلْأَرْضَ مِنْهَآ أَرْبَعَةٌ حُرُمٌۭ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ ٱلدِّينُ ٱلْقَيِّمُ ۚ فَلَا تَظْلِمُوا۟ فِيهِنَّ أَنفُسَكُمْ ۚ وَقَـٰتِلُوا۟ ٱلْمُشْرِكِينَ كَآفَّةًۭ كَمَا يُقَـٰتِلُونَكُمْ كَآفَّةًۭ ۚ وَٱعْلَمُوٓا۟ أَنَّ ٱللَّهَ مَعَ ٱلْمُتَّقِينَ ٣٦
Surely, the number of months according to Allah is twelve (as written) in the Book of Allah on the day He created the heavens and the Earth, of which there are Four Sacred Months. That is the right faith. So, do not wrong yourself therein. And fight the Mushriks all together, as they fight you all together, and be sure that Allah is with the God-fearing. (9:36)
From this blessed verse, it becomes clear that Allah Almighty has Himself designated twelve months for the Islamic lunar year, thus highlighting the significance and importance of the Islamic lunar year and its months. Similarly, it is evident that out of these twelve months, four months are sacred, revered, and deserving of respect, which are
It is mentioned that this subject is found in multiple hadiths, from which the determination of these four months becomes clear. As narrated in Sahih Bukhari, Hazrat Abu Bakr (رضي الله عنه) reported that the Holy Prophet (ﷺ) said during the occasion of the Farewell Pilgrimage: ‘The time has come back in its original form and state, just as it was at the time when Allah created the heavens and the earth.’ (This guidance refers to a mistaken belief and practices of the polytheists, as mentioned in Surah At-Tawbah, verse 37.)
حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ الْمُثَنَّى، حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ الْوَهَّابِ، حَدَّثَنَا أَيُّوبُ، عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ سِيرِينَ، عَنِ ابْنِ أَبِي بَكْرَةَ، عَنْ أَبِي بَكْرَةَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ “ الزَّمَانُ قَدِ اسْتَدَارَ كَهَيْئَتِهِ يَوْمَ خَلَقَ السَّمَوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَ، السَّنَةُ اثْنَا عَشَرَ شَهْرًا، مِنْهَا أَرْبَعَةٌ حُرُمٌ، ثَلاَثَةٌ مُتَوَالِيَاتٌ ذُو الْقَعْدَةِ وَذُو الْحِجَّةِ وَالْمُحَرَّمُ، وَرَجَبُ مُضَرَ الَّذِي بَيْنَ جُمَادَى وَشَعْبَانَ ”.
Narrated Abu Bakra: The Prophet (ﷺ) said. “(The division of time has turned to its original form which was current when Allah created the Heavens and the Earths. The year is of twelve months, out of which four months are sacred: Three are in succession Dhul-Qa’ da, Dhul-Hijja and Muharram, and (the fourth is) Rajab of (the tribe of) Mudar which comes between Jumadi-ath-Thaniyah and Sha ban.” (Sahih al-Bukhari)
The Virtue of ‘Ashhur al-Hurum’ and its Requirement
In these four months (i.e., Dhul-Qa’dah, Dhul-Hijjah, Muharram, and Rajab), the honor, reverence, and respect result in an increase in the rewards of the acts of worship performed during them. Conversely, the consequences of sins also become more severe during these months. It is imperative to emphasize the performance of acts of worship and abstaining from sins during these months.
The scholars advise that one who dedicates themselves to acts of worship during these four months will find it easier to continue their devotion throughout the rest of the year. Similarly, those who strive to avoid sins during these months will find it easier to remain sin-free throughout the year. (Quranic Guidance – Surah At-Tawbah, Verse 36)
The virtue of the month of Rajab al-Murajjab (رجب المُرجَّب) demands it
In these four sacred and honorable months, including the month of Rajab, it is also required that devotion is given special attention and precautions are taken to avoid sins.
In the month of Rajab, the virtue of fasting becomes apparent due to the encouragement towards devotion.
اَشْہُرُ الْحُرُم Incentive for Fasting
The Holy Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) said to a companion, ‘Observe fasts in the month of Ramadan, and also, keep an additional fast of one day in every month.’ The companion asked, ‘Is it permissible for me to fast more than that?’ The Holy Prophet (ﷺ) replied, ‘Fast for two days in each month.’ The companion again asked, ‘Is it permissible for me to fast more?’ The Holy Prophet (ﷺ) said, ‘Fast for three days in each month.’ The companion continued to ask for more, and the Holy Prophet (ﷺ) finally said, ‘Fast on the 13th, 14th, and 15th of the lunar month.’ This advice was given three times, and each time, the Holy Prophet (ﷺ) made a gesture with his three fingers, bringing them together and then separating them, indicating that the fasting should be observed in this manner. (Sunan Abi Dawood) Some of the noble companions and righteous followers.
اَشْہُرُ الْحُرُم Proof of fasting
Hazrat Salim (رضي الله عنه) narrates that Hazrat Abdullah bin Umar (رضي الله عنه) used to observe fasts during the months of ‘Ashhur al-Hurum.’ Author Abdul Razzaq: 7856- This narration is also found in the collection of Ibn Abi Shaybah.
حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو دَاوُدَ عَنْ خَالِدِ بْنِ أَبِي عُثْمَانَ، عَنْ أَيُّوبَ، عَنْ عَبْدِ اللهِ بْنِ يَسَارٍ وَسَلِيطٍ أَخِيهِ قَالا: كَانَ ابْنُ عُمَرَ بِمَكَّةَ يَصُومُ أَشْهُرَ الْحُرُمِ.
Hazrat Yunus (رضي الله عنه) narrates that Imam Hasan Basri (رضي الله عنه) used to observe fasts during the sacred months.
The author Ibn Abi Shaybah mentioned 9315
حَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ عُلَيَّةَ عَنْ يُونُسَ، عَنِ الْحَسَنِ أَنَّهُ كَانَ يَصُومُ أَشْهُرَ الْحُرُمِ
Since ‘Ashur al-Hurum’ (the sacred months) include the month of Rajab, therefore, through these narrations, encouragement to observe fasting in the month of Rajab becomes evident.
The usual practice of the Holy Prophet (ﷺ) regarding fasting in the month of Rajab
Hazrat Abdullah bin Abbas (رضي الله عنهما) narrates that the Holy Prophet (ﷺ) used to observe fasts during the month of Rajab to the extent that we thought he would not break them, and he would not fast during the month of Rajab to the extent that we thought he would not fast at all during this month.
حَدَّثَنَا إِبْرَاهِيمُ بْنُ مُوسَى، حَدَّثَنَا عِيسَى، حَدَّثَنَا عُثْمَانُ، – يَعْنِي ابْنَ حَكِيمٍ – قَالَ سَأَلْتُ سَعِيدَ بْنَ جُبَيْرٍ عَنْ صِيَامِ رَجَبَ، فَقَالَ أَخْبَرَنِي ابْنُ عَبَّاسٍ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم كَانَ يَصُومُ حَتَّى نَقُولَ لاَ يُفْطِرُ وَيُفْطِرُ حَتَّى نَقُولَ لاَ يَصُومُ .
Narrated ‘Uthman b. Hakim: I asked Sa’id b. Jubair about fasting during Rajab. He said: Ibn ‘Abbas told me that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) used to fast to such an extent that we thought that he would never break his fast; and he would go without fasting to such an extent that we thought he would never fast.(Sunan Abi Dawud)
The following points become evident from the preceding details:
1. The month of Rajab, known as ‘Ashhur al-Hurum,’ meaning the sacred months, holds the virtue of fasting, just like other acts of worship during this month.
2. The month of Rajab is one of the ‘Ashhur al-Hurum,’ and the encouragement to fast during this sacred month is established from the practices of the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ).
3. The evidence for fasting during ‘Ashhur al-Hurum’ is also derived from some noble companions and eminent scholars.
4. The evidence for fasting in the month of Rajab is also established from the practices of the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ).
It is known that fasting during the month of Rajab is not forbidden or disliked; rather, it is recommended due to the authenticity of the narrations and the sanctity of this month. Therefore, fasting can be observed on any day throughout the entire month of Rajab. Generally, fasting on any day is virtuous, and individuals can fast as many days as they are able to, depending on their capacity. It should also be clear that fasting in Rajab is highly recommended, so it is essential to understand its significance and not exceed the limits in this matter.
The virtue of fasting on a specific date in the month of Rajab is not established
It is essential to understand that the entire month of Rajab is virtuous for observing fasts. However, there is no specific day prescribed for fasting during this month, nor is the virtue of fasting on any particular day of Rajab confirmed by authentic Hadith.
Imam Hafiz Ibn Hajar Asqalani (رضي الله عنه) wrote an excellent book titled ‘Tabyeen al-Ajab bima Wurida fi Shahri Rajab,’ in which he thoroughly examined the baseless and unverified narrations and virtues circulating among people regarding the month of Rajab. He also conducted a detailed investigation of the prevalent narrations. In this book, he specifically pointed out that there are no established virtues associated with fasting on any day of Rajab, and the virtues commonly mentioned by people are all baseless and unreliable.
Therefore, those who emphasize and promote specific virtues of fasting on the first, second, third, seventeenth, or any other date of Rajab are clearly in error. All such narrations are unauthenticated and unfounded. Consequently, understanding these narrations as accurate, observing fasts based on them, and spreading them further is entirely incorrect.
Correction of a misunderstanding related to the fasting of the month of Rajab
Here, the purpose of addressing this misconception is that some narrations imply resistance to fasting in the month of Rajab. Some noble companions even expressed disapproval of it. Therefore, it is crucial to understand that this resistance is not absolute but rather:
1. When the days of Rajab are given excessive importance and are considered obligatory.
2. When excessive reverence is shown towards Rajab, leading to fasting with the intention as was practiced in the pre-Islamic era.
3. When the virtues of fasting during Rajab or its specific days are exaggerated.
4. When these days are treated like Ramadan or Eid in terms of significance.
It is evident that all these practices are non-Islamic. Hence, fasting in Rajab based on these non-Islamic purposes, theories, and emotions is prohibited. However, if one observes voluntary fasts during Rajab while avoiding these shortcomings, they are not only permissible but also recommended (Mustahab).
The reality of the 27th of Rajab
In the month of Rajab, many people observe special attention to the 27th of Rajab by fasting. This fast is called “Rozah-e-Hazari” (the Day of a Thousand Rewards), and its virtues are also described. It should be noted that there is no authentic Hadith that establishes a specific virtue for fasting on the 27th of Rajab, so observing a fast on this day based on these unsupported virtues is not correct. However, since the 27th of Rajab is like any other ordinary day in the month of Rajab, if someone chooses to fast as a voluntary act of worship on this day, it is permissible. There is no harm in it.
The narrations regarding the 27th of Rajab that have come are weak and unreliable, and therefore, they should not be taken as a basis for fasting on this day. It is important to note that fasting on the 27th of Rajab with the belief that it carries the same merit as fasting on Ashura (the 10th of Muharram) is not allowed. This belief contradicts the teachings of Islam.
Furthermore, it is mentioned that Hazrat Umar (رضي الله عنه) used to discourage fasting on the 27th of Rajab.