Virtue of fasting six days of Shawwaal
Eid Mubarak To all Muslim Brother & sisters.
Shawwal is the Islamic month which comes next to Ramadan in sequence. With Zakat and Fitra, it’s another golden chance for Muslims to seek pleasure of Allah. We get to know from authentic Ahadith of RasuUllah (s.a.w) that he used to fast for the six days in the month of Shawwaal. It is Mustahab and Sunnah for all the Muslims, not obligatory like fasting of Ramadan. Shawwaal’sSayyam are highly recommended because of their immense reward and height of this virtue. Abu Ayyoob (R.A) reported that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever fasts in Ramadaan and follows it with six days of Shawwaal, it will be as if he fasted for a lifetime.” (Narrated by Muslim, Abu Dawood, al-Tirmidhi, al-Nisaa’i and IbnMaajah).
Why to fast for six days only?
We ought to do it as it is Sunnah of our Prophet (s.a.w). It is not compulsory to keep six fasting consecutively after Eid. Muslims celebrate Eid on 1st of Shawwal so theseNafal fasting can be kept on any six days of Shawwaal (consecutively or separately) as per your convenience.
What is the Reward of Shawaal fasting?
In Ramadan, Allah multiplies the reward of good deeds like multiplied by ten. So fasting in Ramadan is like fasting for ten months( in reward) and the six days of Shawwaal fasting are like 2 months, so a person can get the reward of being in the state of fasting for WHOLE year just by keeping six extra fasting of Shawwaal. According to a report: “Allaah has made for each hasanah ten like it, so a month is like fasting ten months, and fasting six days completes the year.” (al-Nisaa’i and IbnMaajah. See alsoSaheeh al-Targheebwa’l-Tarheeb, 1/421).
An opportunity to make-up our shortcomings
One of the advantageous benefits of fasting of Shawwaal is that if in spite of all efforts there remain any shortcomings in a person’s obligatory fasting of Ramadan, these six fasting of Shawwaal can make up those breaches. We all are weak as a human so we are bound to make mistakes and Allah Almighty knows it very well, so out of His supreme mercy we get the chance to make-up inadequacies of our fasting through nafal fasting of Shawwal i.e. only for 6 days. This Usool or principle is derived by scholars from this Hadith which explains that our voluntary/ nafal prayer make ups the shortcoming of obligatory Ebadah. Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The first thing for which people will be brought to account on the Day of Resurrection will be their salaah (prayer). Our Lord, may He be glorified and exalted, will say to His angels – although He knows best – ‘Look at the salaah of My slave, whether it is complete or incomplete.’ If it is perfect, it will be recorded as perfect, and if something is lacking, He will say, ‘Look and see whether My slave did any voluntary (naafil) prayers.’ If he did some voluntary prayers, [Allaah] will say, Complete the obligatory actions of My slave from his voluntary actions.’ Then all his actions will be dealt with in a similar manner.” (Narrated by Abu Dawood).
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