Shawwal (1): The Sermon of Shawwal
Dr. Khalid ibn 'Abdullah ibn 'Abdul-'Aziz Al Qasim
The sermon of Shawwal
Praise be to Allah who granted us fasting and Qiyam, and made us catch the
months of Hajj to the Sacred House of Allah. We ask Him (Glory be to Him) to
accept from us, to win Paradise, and to save us from Hell-Fire. I bear witness
that there is no god but Allah alone who has no partner. I bear witness that
our master is Muhammad, the servant and Messenger of Allah, who was the best
to offer Salah, to fast, and to repent to Allah; may Allah send His Peace and
Blessings upon him.
O servants of Allah, fear Allah as He should be feared, and die not except in
a state of Islâm [as Muslims (with complete submission to Allâh)]. "O mankind!
Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person (Adam), and from
him (Adam) He created his wife [Hawwâ' (Eve)], and from them both He created
many men and women; and fear Allâh through Whom you demand (your mutual
rights), and (do not cut the relations of) the wombs (kinship). Surely, Allâh
is Ever an All-Watcher over you." [Surat An-Nisa': 1].
O servants of Allah, Ramadan has elapsed and some have won, whereas some were
deprived of goodness, so who among you has been accepted to congratulate and
who has been rejected to console?
It is a great season that is full of profits, gifts, offers, forgiveness,
mercies, and emancipation from Hell-Fire. We ask Allah, the Generous, to make
us from those whom He accepted by His Favor, Grace, and Generosity.
O servants of Allah, of the signs of accepting actions are: The improvement of
the conditions of good-doers and performing a good deed after another. Of the
signs of rejection and deprivation of reward is negligence after Ramadan. The
meaning is not to make Shawwal as Ramadan but to change the conditions to the
O servants of Allah, Allah did not put an end to actions except by death. "And
worship your Lord until there comes to you the certainty (i.e. death)." [Surat
Al Hijr: 99]. The lord of Ramadan is the lord of Shawwal and the lord of the
rest of months. Yes, Ramadan is a virtue and a believer increases his good
actions during Ramadan but he should not stop after Ramadan. So, do not
abandon Salah in masjids because obligatory duties have some virtues and they
are more beloved to Allah than voluntary actions even if they are performed in
Ramadan. Listen to the Prophet's saying in the divine Hadith: Allah (Glory be
to Him) says: "My servant does not draw near to Me with anything more loved by
Me than the religious duties I have imposed upon him." [Sahih Al Bukhari].
Sins are forbidden in all months and the repentance of sins is obligatory to
give up all sins. "And whosoever repents and does righteous good deeds; then
verily, he repents towards Allâh with true repentance." [Surat Al Furqan: 71].
Abandoning idle talks and false speech is required in all days, as it is one
of the qualities of righteous believers. "And those who do not bear witness to
falsehood, and if they pass by some evil play or evil talk, they pass by it
with dignity." [Surat Al Furqan: 72]. Allah (Glory be to Him) commanded His
Prophet with the following: "And say to My slaves (i.e. the true believers of
Islâmic Monotheism) that they should (only) say those words that are the
best." [Surat Al Isra': 53];
and this is in all months of the year.
Likewise, the case in spending and feeding where Allah (may He be Exalted)
described the believers by saying: "And they give food, inspite of their love
for it (or for the love of Him), to the Miskîn (the needy), the orphan, and
the captive * (Saying): "We feed you seeking Allâh's Countenance only. We wish
for no reward, nor thanks from you." * Verily, We fear from our Lord a Day,
hard and distressful, that will make the faces look horrible (from extreme
dislike to it). * So Allâh saved them from the evil of that Day, and gave them
Nadrah (a light of beauty) and joy. * And their recompense shall be Paradise,
and silken garments, because they were patient." [Surat Al Insan: 8 - 12].
Voluntary night Salah is stressed during Ramadan, but it is a Sunnah all year
long. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "O people, promote the greetings,
feed (the poor and needy) and perform Salah when others are asleep so that you
will enter Paradise safely." [Reported by Ibn Majah and Ad-Darimy].
Furthermore, the voluntary night Salah is the best in reward after the
obligatory ones as was authentically reported from the Prophet (peace be upon
him). Likewise, offering voluntary night Salah is stressed in the last ten
days of Ramadan, it is desirable all year long. The Prophet (peace be upon
him) said: "Every night when it is the last third of the night, our Lord, the
Superior, the Blessed, descends to the nearest heaven and says: Is there
anyone to invoke Me that I may respond to his invocation? Is there anyone to
ask Me so that I may grant him his request? Is there anyone asking My
forgiveness so that I may forgive him?" [Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim].
Allah described His believing servants by His Saying: "And those who pray and
beg Allâh's Pardon in the last hours of the night." [Surat Al 'Imran: 17].
They realized the greatness of this time, the virtue of seeking forgiveness,
and believed in the mercy of the Most Forbearing. Voluntary Night Salah is
easy because it may be one Rak'ah, three, or more of odd number Salah that is
performed between 'Isha' and Fajr. It is the best Salah in reward after the
obligatory Salah then the daily Sunnah Salah. It was authentically reported
that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Whoever performs twelve Rak'ahs
for the sake of Allah, Allah shall build for him a house in Paradise. They are
as follows: Two Rak'ahs before dawn, four Rak'ahs before Zhuhr, two Rak'ahs
thereafter, two Rak'ahs after Maghrib, and two after 'Isha' Salah."
O servants of Allah, do not abandon the Book of Allah after Ramadan and recite
some portions of it because it is the light, the guide, and the cure. "Verily,
those who recite the Book of Allâh (this Qur'ân), and perform As-Salât (Iqâmat-as-Salât),
and spend (in charity) out of what We have provided for them, secretly and
openly, they hope for a (sure) trade-gain that will never perish. *That He may
pay them their wages in full, and give them (even) more, out of His Grace.
Verily, He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Ready to appreciate (good deeds and to
recompense)." [Surat Fatir: 29 - 30].
It was authentically reported from the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him)
that he said: "Whoever keeps to these obligatory Salah shall not be written
among the heedless. And whoever recites one hundred Ayah during a night, he
shall be written as one of the obedient." [Reported by Ibn Khuzaymah and Ibn
Keep to reciting the Glorious Qur'an, for it is the profitable trade and the
booty. These rewards shall not be granted except for those about whom Allah
said: "And the Messenger (Muhammad peace be upon him) will say: O my Lord!
Verily, my people deserted this Qur'ân (neither listened to it, nor acted on
its laws and teachings)." [Surat Al Furqan: 30].
O servants of Allah, Qur'an is a proof for or against you, as it intercedes to
its reciters. Fasting is obligatory during Ramadan and desirable all year
long, so do not miss the six days of Shawwal. The Prophet (peace be upon him)
said: "He who observes As-Saum (the fasts) in the month of Ramadan, and also
observes As-Sawm for six days in the month of Shawwal, it is as if he has
observed As-Saum for the whole year." [Reported by Imam Muslim].
Fasting for three days of each month because of the Prophet's saying: "Fasting
three days of each month and Ramadan to the next Ramadan makes it as if a
person fasts perpetually." [Reported by Muslim]. It is permissible to fast the
13th, 14th, and the 15th of each Arabic Month because of the Prophet's saying:
"O Abu Dhar, if you are to observe fasting for three days of each month, then
fast, the 13th, 14th, and 15th." [Reported by At-Tirmidhy and Al Bayhaqy].
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) was asked about the best fasting
after Ramadan and he said: "The best month for observing Sawm (fasting) after
Ramadan Fasting the month of Al Muharram." [Reported by Muslim]. It was
reported in Sahih Al Bukhari and Sahih Muslim on the authority of the Mother
of believers 'A'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) that the Prophet (peace
be upon him) used to fast on Monday and Thursday. [Reported by An-Nasa'y Ibn
When the Prophet (peace be upon him) was asked, he said: "Deeds are presented
(before Allah) on Mondays and Thursdays and I prefer that my deeds should be
presented when I am fasting." [Reported by An-Nasa'y and At-Tirmidhy].
Listen to the commandment of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to Abu Hurayrah
(may Allah be pleased with him) when he said:
"My friend (the Prophet (peace be upon him)) advised me to do three things and
I shall not leave them till I die, these are: To fast three days every month,
to offer the Forenoon Salah (Duha), and to offer Witr before sleeping."
[Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim].
The Forenoon Salah contains a great reward as was authentically reported from
the Prophet (peace be upon him) who said:
"Allah (may He be Exalted) says: O son of Adam, do not be helpless in
performing four Rak'ahs for Me at the beginning of the day: I will supply what
you need till the end of it." [Reported by Ibn Hibban and Al Bayhaqy]. Its
prescribed time is ample from the sunrise until Zhuhr Salah.
O servants of Allah, keep to performing righteous deeds as the Prophet (peace
be upon him) said: "The acts most pleasing to Allah are those which are done
most continuously, even if they amount to little." [Reported by Muslim].
So, you have to be straight all year long to attain the great honor which
Allah promised you: "Verily, those who say: Our Lord is Allâh (Alone), and
then they stand firm, on them the angels will descend (at the time of their
death) (saying): Fear not, nor grieve! But receive the glad tidings of
Paradise which you have been promised! *We have been your friends in the life
of this world and are (so) in the Hereafter. Therein you shall have (all) that
your inner-selves desire, and therein you shall have (all) for which you ask.
* An entertainment from (Allâh), the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." [Surat
Fussilat: 30 - 32].
May Allah make you and me benefit from the Glorious Qur'an! This is my speech
to you and I seek Allah's forgiveness for you and for me, for He is the Most
Merciful The all-Forgiving.