SHAFAQNA – “O People! Indeed ahead of you is the blessed month of God, a month of blessing, mercy and forgiveness, a month that with God is the best of months.
Its days are the best of days, its nights the best of nights, and its hours the best of hours. It is the month that invites you to be the guests of God and invites you to be one of those near to Him.
Each breath you take glorifies him; your sleep is worship, your deeds are accepted and your supplications are answered. So, ask God, your Lord; to give you a sound body and an enlightened heart so you may be able to fast and recite his book, for only he is unhappy who is devoid of God’s forgiveness during this great month.
Remember the hunger and thirst of the day of Qiyamah (Judgment) with your hunger and thirst; give alms to the needy and poor, honor your old, show kindness to the young ones, maintain relations with your blood relations; guard your tongues, close your eyes to that which is not permissible for your sight, close your ears to that which is forbidden to hear, show compassion to the orphans of people so compassion may be shown to your orphans. Repent to God for your sins and raise your hands in prayer during these times, for they are the best of times and God looks towards his creatures with kindness, replying to them during the hours and granting their needs if He is asked.
O People! Indeed your souls are dependent on your deeds, free it with Istighfar (repentance); lighten its loads by long prostrations; and know that God swears by His might: That there is no punishment for the one who prays and prostrates and he shall have no fear of the fire on the day when man stands before the Lord of the worlds.
O People! One who gives Iftaar (meal) to a fasting person during this month will be like one who has freed someone and his past sins will be forgiven.”
Some of the people who were there then asked the Prophet (sawa): “Not all of us are able to invite those who are fasting?”
“One who has good morals (Akhlaq) during this month will be able to pass the ‘Siraat’ (path) on the day that feet will slip. One who covers the faults of others will benefit in that God will curb His anger on the Day of Judgment. As for one who honors an orphan God will honor him on the Day of Judgment; And for the one who spreads his kindness, God will spread His mercy over him on the Day of Judgment.
As for the one who cuts the ties of relation, God will cut His mercy from him. Whosoever performs a recommended prayer in this month God will keep the fire of Hell away from him. Whoever performs an obligatory prayer God will reward him with seventy prayers [worth] in this month; And whosoever prays a lot during this month will have his load lightened on the day of measure; He who recites one verse of the holy Quran will be given the rewards of reciting the whole Qur’an during other months.
O People! Indeed during this month the doors of heaven are open, therefore ask God not to close them for you; the doors of hell are closed, so ask God to keep them closed for you. During this month Shaytan (Satan) is imprisoned so ask your Lord not to let him have power over you.”
The Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (as) said that he got up and said, “O’ the Prophet of God, What is the best deed in this month?”
The Prophet replied, “O’ Abul Hasan! Abstaining from the matters forbidden by God, the Majestic, the Glorified, is the best deed in this month.”
Then the Prophet wept. Imam Ali asked, “O’ the Messenger of God! What makes you weep?”
He replied, “O’ Ali, I weep for what they will do with you in this month. As if I am with you, and you are offering prayers to your Lord, when the worst of the foregone, and those who are yet to come, a brother of the person who slew the camel of Thamood has come and gives you a (sword) blow on your head, which reddens your beard.”
The Commander of the Faithful asked “O’ the Prophet of God, will that be for the safety of my Faith?”
The Prophet replied, “Yes, it will be with the safety of your Faith O’ Ali whoever kills you has killed me; whoever bears enmity to you is my enemy; whoever abuses you has abused me; because, indeed you are to me like my own self; your soul is from my soul; your nature is from my nature; Indeed God the Holiest and the Greatest, created me and you too; He chose me and you too; He selected me for Prophet-hood and selected you for Imamat; whoever denies your Imama, has denied my Prophet-hood. O’ Ali you are my successor, father of my children, my son-in-law, and my Khalifa over my Umma (nation), both during my life and after my death. Your order is my order, your No is my No. I swear by Him who made me the Prophet and made me the best of the people, indeed you are the Proof of God for His creatures, His Trustee of His Secrets, and the guardian.”