If you are reading this then first thank Allah that He has blessed you to be alive and well, ready to take the most of these best 10 nights of the year.
Now, like with any major event, we all need to make sure we use our time as effectively as possible to make the most of it noting its about quality and to a certain extent quantity.
Do not let your ‘performance’ until now affect your last 10 days. The moment of forgiveness could be today or anytime in the coming days and nights!
It is not all lost! If you sincerely wish it could have been better.
Chin up and get ready to make it your best yet! Start with a positive, sincere intention!
2. Know the night and seek knowledge
Today, take a little time to read the Tafsir of Surah al-Qadr to understand what actually happens this night! You will feel its power & greatness so much more!
On top of that, be of those who increase oneself in knowledge of Allah and everything He has given us with Islam. After all, Seeking knowledge is a doorway to Paradise.
3. Only the 27th night
Do not wait for the 27th Night to give it your “all”. The entire last 10 days should be your target.
Stay up each night if thinking it could be the night! Would you want to miss Laylatul Qadr even “by chance”?
4. Newly invented practices
Do not fall into any innovations/celebrations any masjid or culture might try to promote.
Follow the Sunnah! The Prophet (sallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) guided us simply:
“Whoever stays up and prays on Laylat al-Qadr out of faith and in the hope of reward, his previous sins will be forgiven.”
5. The special Dua
Memorize and keep asking the dua’ taught by Rasulullah (sallAllahu ‘alaihi wa sallam):
Allaahumma innaka ‘afuwwun tuhibb al-‘afwa fa’affu ‘anni
O Allaah, You are forgiving and You love forgiveness, so forgive me
Recite it before you finish salah, in sujood, hands raised or even spontaneously at any other time of the day and of course the night.
6. Have a short Dua list and do Dhikr
Remember this is as awesome as it ever gets for a servant of Allah!
The Night of Qadr, of Destiny!
Consciously pick each and everything you crucially wish for in this dunya, in your deen, family, and in your aakhirah!
Also chip in those priceless adhkar (remembrance of Allah) like Subhan’Allah Alhumdulilah La Ilaha ilallah Allahu Akbar Astaghfirullah and other adhkar from the book Hisnul Muslim (the Fortress of the Muslim).
Dont forget to also send plenty of salawat upon our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him).
For duas, don’t forget to include the brothers and sisters around the world who are suffering, in grief and in need of guidance.
7. Naps and food
Take brief naps during the day, if possible. Keep your stomach light and sleep as soon as you have prayed ‘isha.
Do not delay! After a brief nap, refresh yourself and get. ready for worship.
Remember these are the best nights of the year, so be like the bat!
Don’t neglect your family!
Rasulullah (salAllahu alayhi wasallam) made it a point to wake up his wives throughout these nights!
And yes, your children are not too young to stay up some part of the night – if they can be allowed to play video games or watch TV, they can be inspired to be up atleast for sometime!
Prepare them, make them excited, plan some activities for them to do and give them some incentives if need to be, chocolates and ice cream always work!
9. Looks matter
Look the Part: The way we dress and prepare has a big effect on our psychology.
Wear your best, perfume yourself, and feel the energy! Know Allah is beautiful and He loves beauty especially in our ibadah.
10. Itikaf in Masjid or secluded spot at home
Choose a spot, whether in the Masjid or in your home, where you can have peace and solitude.
Keep your mushaf, praying mat, and water at hand so that you are not distracted by constantly getting up for this or that.
11. Social media and idle talk
This is not the night to tweet pics or update Facebook statuses about how amazing the night is and how you are feeling & worshipping Allah.
Let that be a secret between you & your Rabb!
So switch off those phones, wifi, laptops and computers. Disconnect with the world, and connect with al-‘Afuww!
Avoid talking about things that won’t benefit your book of deeds and especially guard your tongue from gossiping, backbiting and belittling others.
12. Vary the ibadah
If you find yourself feeling sleepy, vary your acts of worship. Alternate between qiyaam, heartfelt dua’a, reading the Qur’an.
Do not spend the night listening to lectures or recitations. Or do it only for a short while when you feel the sleep coming on.
13. Patience is the key
The last 10 days might be tiring. You might still have work or school. This is the time to bear all that hardship, and keep firm sabr.
Think how Allah has blessed you with this tremendous opportunity that might NEVER come again in your life again.
If you knew for sure that this was your last Ramadan, if you knew certainly that Jannah was up for grabs, wouldn’t you sprint for it no matter what it takes?
Try to give something, anything, in charity each night.
Not just because it’s during Ramadan, in which our Prophet (peace be upon him) used to be the most generous, but also because it could be an unimaginable multiplier of hasanah due to the night of power.
Note, in Islam, charity is not only in money terms. Smile, help in chores, speak a good word and many other such acts with the intention of pleasing Allah can be recorded as acts of sweet charity for you.
15. This is most important
Keep husn adh-dhann bi Allah (good expectations from Allah).
When you ask, remember you are asking the Most Generous King. If you hope for the best, He will give you the best. Don’t hold back.
Trust in Him, pour out your heart in front of Him, and let no doubt, no barrier, no evil thoughts keep you away from ar-Rahman, ar-Raheem!
Oh Allah grant us the honour to do the most on the night of power, purify our intentions and accept our acts no matter how small they may be