Reminder upon the Conclusion of Ramadan
بسم الله الرَّحمن الرَّحيم
الحمد لله ربِّ العالمين والصَّلاة والسَّلام على نبيِّنا محمَّدٍ و آله وصحبه وسلَّم
We demonstrate our gratitude to Allah in providing us the opportunity to witness and complete Ramadan, as we ask that our deeds and actions presented within the blessed month are righteous and accepted.
We begin with a reminder to all and every one of us; indeed the conclusion of the month of Ramadan does not in any way dictate the conclusion of striving and persevering in the actualisation of worship to the Creator of the Heavens and Earth and all of that which exists. For indeed, from amongst the signs indicative of a successful Ramadan is the continuation of obedience and remembrance of Allah, the continuation of fasting on an optional basis throughout the year – such as the 6 days of Shawwal, the Day of ‘Arafat, the Day of ‘Ashoorah, 3 days of every month – to mention a few. Similarly, the continuation of standing in prayer within the silence of the night – and in particular the last third of the night due to the authentic narrations regarding the descent of Allah to the lowest heaven during that time.
Likewise, from amongst the signs indicative upon a slave’s lack of admonishment and benefit from the blessed month is that he ceases the acts of obedience he was upon, hence the prayer becomes deficient, recitation and memorisation of the Qur’an ceases as well as shortcomings in other acts of obedience Allah ul Musta’an.
Therefore we advise ourselves and others to strive to maintain the obedience and worship demonstrated during Ramadan, such that you persist upon the remembrance of Allah throughout the year; for indeed our obligation to Allah is not restricted to Ramadan, but rather it is to worship Him until death arrives upon us.
Thereafter, we remind ourselves of another affair of extreme importance; indeed it is the affair of seeking knowledge. No doubt, many of our brothers and sisters within their regions across the globe may have experienced a break in regular studies and lessons during the course of Ramadan, however now the time presents itself for a renewal of effort and enthusiasm, for a renewal of energy, resoluteness, and persistence in seeking knowledge – all of which must be encompassed by the great virtue of patience.
For indeed, as Allah mentioned in the great chapter of the Qur’an Soorat-ul-‘Asr, all of mankind is in loss except those who believe, and do righteous good deeds and recommend one another to the truth and recommend one a another to patience. The scholars have stated that in reality the first three characteristics [believing i.e. having knowledge, acting righteously and advising upon truth i.e. spreading the knowledge] are all in need of the final affair – patience.
Ponder upon the following statements in recognition of the status of knowledge
Al-Imam an-Nawawy mentioned from ‘Ali ibn abi Talib رضي الله عنه (المجموع) (1 / 41):
أنَّه قال: كفى بالعلم شرفاً أن يدَّعيه مَنْ لا يُحسنهُ، ويفرح به إذا نسبَ إليه، وكفى بالجهلِ ذمَّاً أنْ يتبرأَ منهُ مَنْ هوَ فيه
Sufficient for knowledge as an honour is that the one who is not proficient in it [still] claims it, and is pleased if he is associated to it, and sufficient for ignorance as a criticism is that the one who is upon it declares his innocence of it.
Similarly Salih bin Mahraan as-Shaibaany رحمه الله stated:
كلُّ صاحب صناعةٍ لا يقدرُ أنْ يعملَ في صناعتهِ إلاَّ بآلةٍ، و آلةُ الإسلام: العلم
(طبقات المحدثين بأصبهان) (2 / 216)
Every craftsman or professional is not able to carry out his work except with a tool; and the tool of Islam is knowledge.
Therefore, the advice directed upon us all is to rejuvenate our efforts in striving to seek the knowledge of our Religion of al-Islam. It is imperative lessons delivered by the scholars if possible, or students of knowledge upon the methodology of Salafiyyah are attended in a consistent and regular manner wherever those lessons may be in our localities across the globe. Furthermore, it is of vital importance that lessons are attended upon a mentality of focus; preparation prior to attendance, as well as concentrated note-taking the duration of the lesson, concluded with revision after it. This is a three step methodology in seeking knowledge the teachers at the University of Madinah would advise for the one desiring to solidify his/her knowledge.
We ask Allah to strengthen our resolve and energy in seeking knowledge and educating ourselves of the affairs of our Religion, and to distance us from all wasteful activities and foolishness of those opposing this blessed methodology in attempting to divert Ahlus-Sunnah into futile ways.