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بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

 Ramadan: A Month of Victory

The blessed month of Ramadan is here. The month of Siyam and Qiyam. The month of Quran. And the month of victory.

Each year as Ramadan grows closer the Muslim Ummah grows in anticipation of it. The strong spiritual connection with Allah (swt) and the Rahma and Barakah this month promises is felt months before it arrives and we receive it with an air of preparation and hope.

Abu Huraira related that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

«مَنْ صَامَ رَمَضَانَ وَقَامَهُ إِيمَانًا وَاحْتِسَابًا غُفِرَ لَهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنْ ذَنْبِهِ وَمَنْ قَامَ لَيْلَةَ الْقَدْرِ إِيمَانًا وَاحْتِسَابًا غُفِرَ لَهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنْ ذَنْبِهِ»  ‏

"“Whoever fasts during Ramadan with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven. Whoever prays during the nights in Ramadan with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven. And he who passes Lailat al-Qadr in prayer with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven.” (Bukhari, Muslim).

However, year on year the situation of the Muslim Ummah becomes harder the veracity of which is felt during Ramadan. No one can ignore the crimes and atrocities being perpetuated upon the Muslims throughout the world and no one can ignore the blatant genocide of the Palestinians while the world looks on.

But it is not for the believers to be despondent no matter how dark the storm for Allah (swt) says:

[وَلاَ تَهِنُوا وَلاَ تَحْزَنُوا وَأَنتُمُ الأَعْلَوْنَ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ] “And do not become weak (of heart) or grieve, you will have the upper hand if you are believers.” [Aali-Imran: 139].

Allah (swt) says that the previous nations were so shaken up that the people eventually asked their messengers to call for the help of Allah.

“They pleaded (to Allah) for victory against their enemies and invoked Him for aid and deliverance from their hardships and trials.

Allah (swt) said: [أَلا إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللّهِ قَرِيبٌ] “Yes! Certainly, the help of Allah is near!” [Al-Baqara 214].

Allah (swt) said: [فَإِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا * إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا] “Verily, along with every hardship is relief. Verily, along with every hardship is relief.” [Ash-Sharh 5-6]. So just as there is hardship, its equal of relief will soon arrive.” (Tafsir Ibn Kathir)

“To follow this religion has, therefore, never been easy; it is not merely a matter of declaring one's faith and then sitting back in ease and comfort. On the contrary, the profession of faith has always demanded that one should strive to establish the religion, which one has adopted as one's faith, as a living reality and that one should spare no effort (or opportunity) in undermining the power of the Devil who seeks to resist it.” (Tafsir Imam Maududi 2:214)

It was this conviction combined with the spirit of Ramadan that enabled our righteous forefathers to face seemingly impossible challenges. It was a time of intense activity; the day spent in actively fulfilling their worldly responsibilities ordained by Allah and the night in prayer, calling upon Allah for His acceptance, mercy and forgiveness. Indeed, the Muslims of the past did not let themselves be fazed by the difficulty in their circumstances because Allah has already promised victory whenever hardship strikes and the month of Ramadan has seen many such impossible situations turn round to become victories for Islam and the Muslim Ummah.

Indeed, our forebears have left many such examples for us to draw strength from.

• On the 17th Ramadan 2 AH, the Battle of Badr won a key victory for the Muslims after years of torture and persecution. Leading an army of around 300 against 1000 Mushrikeen, the Prophet (saw) raised his hands and prayed,

«اللَّهُمَّ إِنْ تُهْلِكْ هَذِهِ الْعِصَابَةَ مِنْ أَهْلِ الْإِسْلَامِ لَا تُعْبَدْ فِي الْأَرْضِ»

O Allah! Should this group (of Muslims) be defeated today, You will no longer be worshipped.” Allah (swt) replied with,

[إِذْ تَسْتَغِيثُونَ رَبَّكُمْ فَاسْتَجَابَ لَكُمْ أَنِّي مُمِدُّكُم بِأَلْفٍ مِّنَ الْمَلآئِكَةِ مُرْدِفِينَ] “Indeed, I will reinforce you with a thousand from the angels, rank after rank.” [Al-Anfal: 9].

And He (swt) said:

[فَأَلْقَى مُوسَى عَصَاهُ فَإِذَا هِيَ تَلْقَفُ مَا يَأْفِكُونَ]

“Soon will the multitude be put to fight, and they will show their backs” [Ash-Shua’rah: 45].

• Six years later, in Ramadan 8 AH, the door of Islam widened with the Conquest of Makkah.

• Ramadan, 15 AH, Saʿd b. Abī Waqqāṣ (ra) led the Muslims to victory in the Battle of Qādisiyyah, against the indomitable Persian Empire. A defeat from which it never revived.

• Ramadan, 92 AH, Ṭāriq b. Ziyād conquered the Andalus, establishing an unbroken Muslim rule over it for nearly 800 years. 26th Ramadan, 648 AH, Saifuddin Qutz united the Muslim army and met the Mongols at Ain Jalut defeating them and bringing back the Muslim reign of authority in the region.

All these victories were pivotal moments not only in the history of Islam but the history of the world and they all were seemingly impossible. History bears witness to the ability of Ramadan to transform situations and bring light and revival in the unlikeliest of times.

Our great predecessors of the past knew that Ramadan is not a month of just feasting but a month of action. As we act on Allah’s command to fast and increase our zeal in our ibadah and good deeds to reap the barakah of this blessed month, so too should we act on the other commands of Allah (swt) which will receive the same barakah insha Allah.

My dear sisters, utilise this month as you may not see another Ramadan. Let this Ramadan renew you as a servant of Allah. The spirit of Ramadan should embolden us more and make us stand upon the conviction that Allah will indeed give us victory. Let us not only seek the victory over our nafs by only being diligent in fasting and ritual ibadah but also by doing those actions within our capacity that help in removing the shackles of the Ummah so that it may implement all the Laws of Allah (swt), so that it may rise to once again carry the flag of Islam and surely that is a great victory.

Written for the Central Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir by
Hawa Ismael


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