Importance of the First 10 Days of Dhul-Hijjah
The last month of the Islamic calendar Dhul Hijjah is one of the most important months in Islam that carries many virtues and blessings. It is the month of Eid-ul-Adha and the month of Hajj which reminds us of the sacrifice of Prophet Ibrahim (AS) and his son Prophet Ismael (AS). Every year on this month, Muslims from all over the world travel to Saudi Arabia to perform Hajj for the sake of Allah (SWT) and also celebrate Eid ul Adha by sacrificing an animal. This year too, many Muslims have embarked on this spiritual journey of a lifetime.
However, do not be disheartened if you are not amongst those lucky ones who are going for Hajj this year. There are some special deeds and supplications that you can do during these blessed ten days of Dhul Hijjah and earn the rewards manifold. Virtues of the ten days of Dhul Hijjah are many and it is important that we take advantage of them if we are not able to go for pilgrimage. The sacredness of these ten days/nights could be known by a verse of the Quran where Allah (SWT) says,
“By the Dawn; By the ten nights” [Surah Al-Fajr: 1-2]
Allah (SWT) also attaches great importance and value to these blessed nights. There is also a significant Hadith about the ten days of Dhul Hijjah where our beloved Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) expressed its tremendous blessings:
“There are no days in which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days.” The people asked, “Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah?” He said, “Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah, except in the case of a man who went out, giving himself and his wealth up for the cause (of Allah), and came back with nothing.”
Therefore, we should spend as much time as we can in the remembrance of Allah during these blessed days. Spend your days and nights in intensive worship and virtuous acts to make the most of this period because one has no guarantee if one would live to see the next Dhul Hijjah.
Here is the list of virtuous deeds to do in the blessed 10 Days of Dhul Hijjah that will help you gain multiple rewards and the pleasure of Allah, the Almighty:
1. Perform Hajj and Umrah:
Hajj and Umrah, undoubtedly, are the best things to do if you want to get the maximum blessings of the first 10 days of Dhul Hijjah. Every year Hajj is performed from 8th to 12th Dhul Hijjah and millions of pilgrims gather to fulfill their obligation. However, if you are not lucky enough to be called to Baitullah (The House of Allah), there are many more ways to earn the pleasure of Allah.
[ Read Also: How to Perform Hajj ]
2. Fast in the 9 Days of Dhul Hijjah especially on the Day of Arafah:
Rewards of fasting in the first 9 days of Dhul Hijjah are many as these are significant days for fasting. You should try to fast all the nine days but if you are unable to do so, you must fast on the Day of Arafah. The Prophet (pbuh) encouraged us to do good deeds in the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah and fasting is counted among one of the best deeds.
Almighty Allah says, “All the deeds of the son of Adam are for him, except fasting, which is for Me and I shall reward for it.”’
However, it is prohibited to fast on the 10th of Dhul Hijjah which is the day of Eid ul Adha.
“The Prophet (PBUH) used to fast on the ninth of Dhul Hajj, on the day of `Ashurah, on three days of each month, and on the first two Mondays and Thursdays of each month.”
[ Read Also: Common Mistakes to Avoid During Hajj ]
3. Do Charity:
There are great benefits of Dhul-Hijjah days, so take this opportunity to give to charity and get the maximum rewards. It does not matter how much donation you give away but what matters the most is a good intention. Always remember that whoever gives in the way of Allah, He multiplies it and returns it back. Make the most of this blessed month by giving charity to the underprivileged no matter how small the charity is.
[ Read Also: How to Prepare for Hajj? ]
4. Perform Dhikr (Takbeer, Tahleel, and Tahmeed):
It is recommended to recite Takbeer (Allahu Akbar), Tahleel (Laa ilaaha illa Allah), Tahmeed (Alhamdu Lillaah) and Tasbeeh (Subhan Allah) on the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah. These should be recited abundantly in homes, streets, mosques or any other place where it is permitted to remember and glorify Allah (SWT).
The Prophet (pbuh) said: “There are no days on which good deeds are greater or more beloved to Allah than on these ten days, so recite much Tahleel (saying Laa ilaaha ill-Allah), Takbeer (saying Allahu Akbar) and Tahmeed (saying Alhamdu Lillaah).”
[ Read Also: Good Things to Do During Hajj ]
5. Make Sincere Repentance:
Allah (SWT) loves those who repent to him sincerely in complete submission. The act of sincere repentance with an intention to never return back to the disobedience is extremely dear to Him. So, in the last ten days of Dhul Hijjah, return to Allah by repenting on your past sins and giving up all the deeds that Allah dislikes. Be regretful about your sins, resolve never to return to the old path and adhere firmly to the path that Allah (SWT) likes.
[ Read Also: Rulings for Muslim Women to go on Hajj ]
6. Spend the Night in Prayers:
It is a great time to seek forgiveness and blessings from Allah (SWT). To humble oneself in supplication and worship during the latter part of the night is very beloved to Allah. He calls out to His servants in the latter part of the night saying,
“Is there anyone to invoke Me, so that I may respond to his invocation? Is there anyone to ask Me, so that I may grant him his request? Is there anyone seeking My forgiveness, so that I may forgive him?”
We should seize this opportunity and ask for His mercy and blessings by supplicating to Him as taught by our Prophet (pbuh),
“Our Lord, bless us with the best of this world and the best of the hereafter and save us from the fire of Hell.”
7. Return to the Book of Allah:
It is time to return to the source of knowledge, the Quran and establish a close relationship with the book. Recite the verses, understand its meaning and try to implement the message in your life. Many of us don’t understand the significance of this occasion and the importance of the first 10 days of Dhul-Hijjah. Read the story of Prophet Ibrahim (AS) to remind yourself about his sacrifice. Try to understand the importance of this sacrifice and why we slaughter animals on Eid-ul-Adha.
[ Read Also: How to Assume the State of Ihram? ]
8. Increase in Doing Good Deeds:
If you are not able to perform Hajj this year, it is important you spend these blessed days in doing good deeds to earn the pleasure of Allah (SWT). Every good deed performed with the intention to gain the rewards from the Almighty will bring closer to Him.
9. Sacrifice an Animal and Distribute the Meat:
Offering a Qurbani (sacrifice) of a livestock animal is the Sunnah of Prophet Ibrahim (AS). It is a way to get closer to Allah (SWT). It is obligatory on every Muslim who can afford to offer a sacrifice (wealth equal to or more than Nisab) on the days of sacrifice i.e. 10th, 11th, and 12th Dhul Hijjah. It is the sacred act that can only be performed on these days of Dhul Hijjah regarding which Allah (SWT) says,
“It is not their meat, nor their blood, that reaches Allah, It is their piety that reaches Allah.”
10. Attend Eid Prayers:
Attending Eid prayers at the Eidgaah is a Sunnah from the Prophet (PBUH) and we should follow this Sunnah, performing it in accordance with the teaching of the Prophet (PBUH). It is a time of joy and we should share this happiness with not only our loved ones but also those who are not fortunate enough to celebrate this occasion. Remember to distribute the meat to the unprivileged and poor people.
[ Read Also: How to Live Your Life After Hajj ]