Ramadan, the most beneficial month of the Islamic calendar is going to end. The most blessed nights of the year (Laylatul Qadr) falls within the last ten nights of Ramadan. Allah (SWT) has given the night such a great status that he (SWT) revealed a complete chapter (Sura Al Qadr) of the Qur'an regarding the virtues of the night. Allah (SWT) has blessed the nation (Ummah) of the Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) with this blessed night, no previous Ummah has been given Laylatul Qadr. Anas Ibn Malik (Ra.), one of the most beloved companions of the last Messenger Muhammad (Pbuh) narrated that The Messenger of Allah (Pbiuh) said, “‘Laylatul Qadr’ has only been gifted by Allah to my Ummah (People). It was not given to any people before this.” (Kanjul Ummal).
The word Laylah means night and the word Qadr means dignity, power, destiny and honour. According to the terminology of Islam, Laylatul Qadr means the Night of Value, Night of Destiny or Night of Power. Laylatul Qadr is the holiest night of the entire year. This night is special for the Ummah of the Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) because:
2. The night is better than thousand months: Worshiping in this night (Laylatul Qadr) sincerely and expecting the reward from Allah is equivalent to worshiping Allah for a thousand months. Allah (SWT) says: ‘The Night of Power (Laylatul Qadr) is better than (worshiping) a thousand months.’ (Sura Qadr: 3). ‘Laylatul Qadr is better than a thousand months’ means standing in prayer in this blessed night is better (in reward) then fasting, praying and performing good deeds for a thousand month (equivalent to 83 years). It is narrated that The Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) mentioned before his companions about a children of Israel, who fought against the enemy for a thousand months and spent the nights in prayer. The companions developed great desire to do the same. So Allah (SWT) revealed the Ayat of Sura Al Qadr: 'The night of Al-Qadr is better than a thousand months'. By this Ayat, Allah (SWT) declared that standing in prayer on Laylatul Qard is better than the actions of that man. (Ibn Kathir).
3. Angels descend to the earth: When the Laylatul Qadr occurs, great angel Jibril comes down from the sky to earth with a group of angels and they visit the houses of believers and mosques and make supplication for every Muslim standing up or sitting down mentioning Allah. Allah (SWT) says: ‘The angels and the Spirit descend therein by permission of their Lord for every matter. Peace it is until the emergence of dawn.’ (Sura Al-Qadr: 4-5). It is narrated that a battalion of angels come down with Jibreel on Laylatul Qadr and visit and greet the believers who are in worship during that night with Salaam. Anas Ibn Malik (Ra) narrated that the Prophet (Pbuh) said, “When Laylatul Qadr comes Jibreel descends with a company of angels who invoke blessings on everyone who is standing or sitting and remembering Allah who is great and glorious.’ (Bayhaqi, Shubul Iman).
4. Laylatul Qadr is The night of destiny. The yearly decree is written down during Laylatul Qadr. Allah (SWT) says: ‘We sent it (Qur'an) down on a blessed night, for We are warning. In that night every affair is wisely decided. (Sura Dukhan : 2-3). The night referred to here is Laylatul Qadr. Because it is said here clearly that the Qur’an was revealed in this night. It is also clearly known to us that that the Qur’an was revealed in Lailatul Qadr. Allah says, “Indeed, we sent the Qur’an down during the night of Qadr (Decree).” (Sura Qadr: Ayat 1).
A Muslim who gets Lailatul Qadr should stay up and perform Nafl (voluntary) prayer on the night. Whoever establishes night prayer on the night with faith and seeking reward (from Allah), all his previous sins would be forgiven. Abu Hurayra (Ra) narrated that The Messenger of Allah (Pbuh) said, ‘Whoever observes optional night prayer on Laylatul Qadr in sincere faith and hoping for Allah's Reward, Allah (SWT) will erase his previous sins.’ (Sahih Muslim).
There is a special Duwa (supplication) that can be recited on Laylatul Qadr which the Prophet (Pbuh) taught us. Aa’ishah (Ra.) said: “I said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, if I know which night is Laylatul Qadr, what should I say on that night?’ The messenger of Allah replied, ‘Say: Allaahumma innaka ‘afuwwun tuhibbulafwa fa’affu ‘anni (O Allaah, You are forgiving and You love forgiveness, so forgive me).” (Tirmidhi).
The writer is Khatib of Baitush Shafiq Mosque and Principal of Baitul Hikmah Academy, Gazipur