As we were eating our suhoor meal today morning, I realized how fast time flies. We’re on the 22nd day of Ramadan already. Subhaanallah.
Anyway, I hope the Ramadan mood is still alive and strong in our homes and among our families, inshaAllah :).
With all the hype and excitement about the Eid celebration and preparation, it’s easy to overlook the importance of these last days of Ramadan. If you find that you and your family are caught in the “Eid hype” too, don’t worry, there is more than a week left of Ramadan for us to cherish! And in these last 10 days, there’s one very, very special night that you really don’t want to miss.
It’s the Night of Qadr, or Laylatul Qadr.
“Verily, We have sent it (the Quran) down in the Night of Decree. And what will make you know what the Night of Decree is? The Night of Decree is better than a thousand months. Therein descend the angels and the Ruh (Jibreel) by Allah’s Permission with all Decrees. Peace! Until the appearance of dawn.” (Al-Qadr: 1-5)
A night that is better than a thousand months (yes, that’s more than 83 years!). What does this mean? Well, imagine, if we are blessed to perform ‘ibaadah on this night, the value is as if we’ve been engaged in that ‘ibaadah for 83 years!
If last Ramadan (and the previous ones, perhaps), we focused mainly on our own good deeds and ‘ibaadah (which is awesome mashaAllah) why not make it a little different this year? Why not, in addition to increasing our ‘ibaadah and good deeds, we invite our kids to share the excitement about Laylatul Qadr too?
I have explained Laylatul Qadr to my son since the beginning of Ramadan, so that he’s aware of how special it is, and that there’s something that we all look forward to every time Ramadan comes (in fact, just knowing how special Laylatul Qadr is, I wish my 2-year-old daughter understands it too!). Just as children are often excited that Eid is coming up, wouldn’t it be even better if they’re excited about this particular night too?
Just because our children can’t stay up all night doing ‘ibaadah (and realistically, we can’t expect them to), it doesn’t mean that we can’t make them understand the significance of this night and why Laylatul Qadr is something nobody would want to miss.
They’ll be thrilled just knowing that the angels are all around!
So, how do we know when is Laylatul Qadr?
Aisha r.a narrated: “Rasulullah SAW used to practice I’tikaaf in the last ten nights and say ‘Seek out Laylatul Qadr in the (odd nights) of the last ten days of Ramadhan’.” (Bukhari & Muslim)
Tell your kids that Laylatul Qadr is a really cool mystery! But we have a little clue on when it’s going to happen, based on what Rasulullah SAW told us in the above hadith. However, the most important thing is to make sure that we increase our good deeds every night of these last ten nights.
Build up the excitement around Laylatul Qadr during these last ten nights of Ramadan with the following activities:
- Teach our children the following du’a: “Allaahumma innaka afuwwun, tuhibbul ‘afwa, fa’fu ‘annee” (Translation: Ya Allah, You are Forgiving and You love forgiveness, so forgive me). This is the supplication that Rasulullah SAW taught us to recite on Laylatul Qadr. Therefore we should recite this du’a especially during the last ten nights of Ramadan.
- Memorize and read the tafseer of Surah Al-Qadr
- Du’a List – Ask your children to make their own du’a list for these last 10 nights. Also, encourage them to make du’a for others. Let them list down the people that they want to make du’a for. Remember, one of the greatest things we can do is making sincere du’a for other people in their absence, and when we do, the angel will say “Ameen, may it be for you too.” How AWESOME is that!
- I’tikaf@Home – Put up an indoor tent for the kids to “camp” in. This is a good way to introduce the concept of i’tikaf to our children. You can let them read the Quran and also keep books, their du’a list, blankets and snacks in the tent. Make it something exciting! InshaAllah, they will remember this experience when they grow up and are old enough to perform actual i’tikaf :).
May we all find this precious night of al-Qadr, may Allah grant us the opportunity to perform ‘ibaadah to our best capacity on this special night and may He forgive all of our sins, past and present. Ameen!