With the fast approach of Ramadan, many of us have begun preparations for this special month. For this reason I would like to remind everyone, including myself, that one aspect of ibaada we must not neglect in our preparations is that of du’a. Unfortunately, du’a becomes lost in the midst of our busy schedules either being neglected completely or reduced to a mere recitation devoid of any feeling or sincerity.
“When Ramadan comes, the Doors of Paradise are opened, and the Doors of Hell are closed, and the Shayatin are chained up”(Ibn Maajah).
This is one of many powerful indicators that du’a made during Ramadan has a greater chance of being accepted. There is no better time than this to make a serious commitment to learning more du’as and incorporating them into our daily lives. A simple and effective way of achieving this goal is to compile a short list of the most important and relevant du’as you wish to learn. I would like to share some from my own personal list to be used as a starting point for your own inshaAllah.
1. Du’a of breaking fast
اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسأَلُكَ بِرَحْمَتِكَ الَّتِي وَسِعَتْ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ أَنْ تَغْفِرَ لِي
O Allah, I ask You by Your mercy, which encompasses all things, that You forgive me.
The fasting person has at the time of breaking fast, a supplication which is not rejected (Ibn Majah, Al Hakim).
As we can see from this hadith, we should choose the du’a we make upon breaking our fast carefully as it is guaranteed a response inshaAllah. I have chosen just one of a number of dua’s which are sunnah to say when breaking the fast however I favoured this particular one due to its focus on repentance which we are all in desperate need of.
2. Du’a for a family who invites you to break their fast with them
أفْطَرَ عِنْدَكُمُ الصَّائِمُونَ، وَ أَكَلَ طَعَامَكُمُ الأبْرَارُ، وَ صَلَّتْ عَلَيْكُم ُ الْمَلائِكَةُ
May those who are fasting break their fast in your home, and may the dutiful and pious eat your food and may the angels send prayers upon you.
This is surely the most beautiful and beneficial way to repay someone for having you at their home for iftar. Remember, any du’a you sincerely make for another, the angels will make for you also.
3. Du’a against laziness
اَللّهُمَّ إِنِّيْ أَعُوْذُ بِكَ مِنَ الْعِجْزِ ، وَالْكَسْلِ، وَالْجُبْنِ ، وَالْهَرَمِ ، وَالْبُخْلِ ، وَأَعُوْذُ بِكَ مِنْ عَذَابِ الْقَبْرِ، وَأَعُوْذُ بِكَ مِنْ فِتْنَةِ الْمَحْيَا وَالْمَمَاتِ.
O Allah, I seek refuge in You from weakness and laziness, miserliness and cowardice, anxiety and sorrow, and I seek refuge in You from the torments of grave, and I seek refuge in You from the trials and tribulations of life and death.
For many of us laziness is a big problem, whether it takes the form of missing fajr, neglecting to recite Qur’an or, as previously discussed abandoning du’a. However, to truly benefit from Ramadan we must endeavor to overcome this. This du’a is beneficial to all of us in this regard but also because it seeks refuge from anxiety, sorrow, torments of the grave and the trials and tribulations of life and death. Its comprehensiveness makes it an excellent du’a to remember and use regularly.
4. Du’a of repentance
أستغفر الله العظيم الذي لا إله إلا هو الحي القيوم وأتوب إليه
The Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) said: ‘Whoever says: ‘I seek Allah’s forgiveness, besides whom, none has the right to be worshipped except He, The Ever Living, The Self-Subsisting and Supporter of all, I turn to Him in repentance.’ …Allah would forgive him even if he was one who fled during the advance of an army.
We are all guilty of regularly committing sins, many of which we may not have repented from or did not even realise we were committing. In fact, the Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam himself said: ‘By Allaah, I seek forgiveness and repent to Allaah, more than seventy times a day.’ (Al Bukhari)
As the sunnah of our beloved Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam who was the best human being to ever live, it shows us how important it is for us to be constantly turning to Allah in repentance. We lose nothing when we do so rather we only gain benefits, including an increased closeness to Allah and a greater chance of entering jannah inshaAllah.
5. Du’a for forgiveness for the believers
رَبَّنَا اغْفِرْ لِي وَلِوَالِدَيَّ وَلِلْمُؤْمِنِينَ يَوْمَ يَقُومُ الْحِسَابُ
“Our Lord, forgive me and my parents and the believers the Day the account is established.”(14:41)
The Prophet (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam) said:
“Whoever seeks forgiveness for the believing men and women, a good deed will be written for him for every single believing man and women (that he prayed for)” (Al-Tabarani).
SubhanAllah, such a simple du’a can reap such enormous reward. However, it is important to note that, as with any du’a, sincerity is required for it to be responded to and for the aforementioned benefits to be gained. In order to find this sincerity within ourselves we must have knowledge of the akhira; what will take place on yawm al qiyamah and the realities of jannah and jahannum. We must also develop a love and sense of mercy for all the believers and a fear for what could happen to them, including ourselves and our loved ones should Allah not forgive our countless sins.
‘Indeed Allah subhaana wa ta’aala is Shy and Beneficent. He is Shy when His servant raises his hands to Him (in du’a) to return them empty’ (Ahmad, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi).
As this hadith implies, regular remembrance of Allah through du’a has countless benefits including protecting us from sin and bringing us closer to Allah. The benefits are even more so during the month of mercy when the reward of every good deed is multiplied. To achieve an optimal appreciation of and benefit from our du’as, I recommend gaining knowledge of the etiquette of du’a, an excellent resource of which is ‘Du’a: The Weapon of the Believer’ by Abu Ammar Yasir Qadhi. Most importantly, let none of us miss this incredible opportunity to earn reward from making sincere du’a a part of our everyday ibaada because none of us know if we will live to see it again.
Du’a: The Weapon of the Believer by Abu Ammar Yasir Qadhi
Fortress of the Muslim: Invocations from the Qur’an and Sunnah compiled by Sa’id bin Wahf Al-Qahtani
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