A Warning from Committing Any Innovations in Rajab

Shaykh Musa Shaleem Mohammed

This piece highlights the many different innovations that occur in Rajab and features brief commentary from the reliable scholars on these innovated acts of worship.
 |  Leave a Comment
Whatsapp
Telegram
Twitter
Facebook
Youtube
Instagram

The Islamic year consists of twelve months of which four are sacred.

Allāh said:

إِنَّ عِدَّةَ الشُّهُورِ عِندَ اللَّهِ اثْنَا عَشَرَ شَهْرًا فِي كِتَابِ اللَّهِ يَوْمَ خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ مِنْهَا أَرْبَعَةٌ حُرُمٌ ۚ ‎﴿٣٦﴾‏

“Indeed, there were twelve months from the beginning of time of which four are sacred.”
[al-Tawbah, 9:36]

Rajab is not simply one of these twelve months; it is actually one of the four sacred months. The Messenger (ﷺ) said: “A year consists of twelve months of which four are sacred. Dhū al-Qaʿdah, Dhū al-Ḥijjah and Muḥarram are the three consecutive sacred months, and Rajab—which comes between Jumādá al-Thānī and Shaʿbān—is [the fourth sacred month].” (Reported by al-Bukhārī (3197), (4662), (5550) and Muslim (1679)) Therefore, waging war in Rajab is prohibited.

Apart from being a sacred month, Rajab has no other virtues. Ibn Ḥajar (رحمه الله) stated: “There are no authentic reports highlighting Rajab’s virtues.” (Tabyīn al-ʿAjab, pg. 9) Therefore, we should avoid performing any specific acts of worship during this month; otherwise, we would only be committing an innovation. However, some Muslims fast, pay their Zakāh, offer supererogatory prayers and engage in other acts of worship specifically in this month thinking it is virtuous. This is not the case, as they use unreliable Aḥadīth to justify performing these acts of worship. However, when some scholars—most of whom are considered from the people of misguidance, like Abū Ṭālib al-Makkī [d. 386 AH], a renowned Ṣūfī—authenticated some of these Aḥadīth and authored books encouraging the Ummah to perform these acts of worship, other scholars authored books clarifying the reality of these Aḥadīth. One such scholar was Ibn Ḥajar (رحمه الله). He authored an entire book dedicated to the critical analysis of these Aḥadīth. He titled it: Clarifying the Strange Reports about Rajab. He concluded that these reports are all inauthentic as the title suggests. He said concludingly: “As for the reports highlighting Rajab’s virtues, then they are divided into two distinct categories: weak and fabricated.” (Tabyīn al-ʿAjab, pg. 10) This statement proves that performing any specific acts of worship based on these unreliable reports is an innovation. Furthermore, the existence of such literature proves that advising, criticising, critiquing and refuting was a practice of our predecessors, despite what some ignorant individuals may claim.

Some Muslims also venerate the twenty-seventh night of Rajab thinking that the Isrāʾ (i.e. the Messenger’s (ﷺ) journey from Makkah to Palestine) and the Miʿrāj (i.e. the Messenger’s (ﷺ) journey from Masjid al-Aqṣá to the heavens) occurred on this night, but you will see that the exact date these miraculous events occurred is actually unknown since there is no reliable Ḥadīth specifying this date. Additionally, celebrating these two occurrences and offering specific acts of worship on the twenty-seventh night of Rajab is an innovation, since there is no reliable evidence to support that, nor is there any precedent for that.

“There are no authentic reports highlighting Rajab’s virtues.”

Ibn Rajab

 

The following excerpts were taken from the works of various scholars who warned the Ummah from committing any innovations in the month of Rajab.

1) A Warning from Utilising the Unestablished Supplication “O Allāh, Bless Us in Rajab and Shaʿbān, and Allow Us to Reach Ramaḍān” upon Rajab’s Commencement

After grading this Ḥadīth inauthentic, Ibn Ḥajar (رحمه الله) said: “I found this very Ḥadīth with another chain that may be perceived to be authentic, but it is also inauthentic; rather, it appears to be fabricated. I wanted to clarify this so this chain would not mislead anyone.” (Tabyīn al-ʿAjab, pg. 13)

Also, al-Nawawī (رحمه الله) stated: “We have narrated in Ḥilyah al-Awliyāʾ with a weak chain that when the month of Rajab commenced, the Messenger (ﷺ) said: ‘O Allāh, bless us in Rajab and Shaʿbān, and allow us to reach Ramaḍān.’” (Al-Adhkār, pg. 189)

Additionally, when Abū Ismāʿīl al-Anṣārī authenticated this Ḥadīth, Ibn Rajab (رحمه الله) said: “This is incorrect because this chain is weak.” (Laṭāʾif al-Maʿārif, pg. 121)

2) A Warning from Performing the Raghāʾib Prayer

Al-Nawawī (رحمه الله) said:

The renowned raghāʾib prayer which comprises of twelve units and is performed between Maghrib and ʿIshāʾ on Rajab’s first Friday and the one hundred unit prayer which is performed in the middle of the month of Shaʿbān are despicable innovations. Do not allow Abū Ṭālib al-Makkī’s speech in the book Qūt al-Qulūb and Abū Ḥāmid al-Gazālī’s [d. 505 AH] speech in Iḥyāʾ ʿUlūm al-Dīn to fool you, for their speech is false. Furthermore, do not allow the speech of a few confused scholars to fool you, like the one who wrote Waraqāt explaining the permissibility of performing these two prayers. He was wrong. Imām Muḥammad ʿAbd al-Raḥmān ibn Ismāʿīl al-Maqdisī wrote an extremely beneficial book explaining the invalidity of these two prayers. (Al-Majmūʿ, vol. 3, pg. 548)

Al-Nawawī (رحمه الله) also said: “May Allāh wage war against the person who innovated this prayer, for it is a despicable innovation, and the evidence for this is numerous. Indeed, some scholars authored beneficial books explaining the repulsiveness of this prayer and the misguided nature of the one who performs it and innovated it.” (Ṣharḥ Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim, vol. 8, pg. 20)

Ibn Rajab (رحمه الله) said: “The reported Aḥadīth highlighting the virtues of performing the raghāʾib prayer on Rajab’s first Friday night are all tales. They are inauthentic. The majority of the scholars deem this prayer an innovation.” (Laṭāʾif al-Maʿārif, pg. 118)

Shaykh Muḥammad ibn Ṣāliḥ al-ʿUthaymīn (رحمه الله) said: “As for the raghāʾib prayer which comprises of one thousand units and is performed on Rajab’s first night or on Rajab’s first Friday night, then the Sharīʿah did not legislate its performance.” (Liqāʾ al-Bāb al-Maftūḥ, 217)

3) A Warning from Performing Supererogatory Prayers during Specific Nights in Rajab

Ibn Ḥajar (رحمه الله) mentioned: “There are no authentic Ḥadīth highlighting the virtue of the month of Rajab, nor fasting either the entire month or fasting specific days of this month, nor performing any prayers on any specific night.” (Tabyīn al-ʿAjab, pg. 9)

Ibn Rajab (رحمه الله) said: “As for supererogatory prayers, then there are no authentic reports specifying this for the month of Rajab.” (Laṭāʾif al-Maʿārif, pg. 118)

Ibn al-Qayyim (رحمه الله) reported that Ibn Taymiyyah (رحمه الله) said:

There are no known authentic reports specifying which month, or which ten day period, or which exact night the Isrāʾ occurred; rather, the reports concerning this are contradictory and weak. They are inconclusive. Therefore, the Muslims should refrain from performing any specific prayers or performing any other acts of worship on this night based on the assumption that the Isrāʾ occurred on this night. (Zād al-Maʿād, vol. 1, pg. 58)

4) A Warning from Fasting Specifically in Rajab

Ibn Ḥajar (رحمه الله) mentioned: “As for the reports highlighting Rajab’s virtues or the virtue of fasting either the entire month or fasting some days of this month, then they are divided into two distinct categories: weak and fabricated.” (Tabyīn al-ʿAjab, pg. 10)

Shaykh al-Islām Ibn Taymiyyah (رحمه الله) said:

As for choosing to fasts specifically in Rajab, then all of the reports about that are weak; rather, they are fabricated, and the people of knowledge do not rely on any of them. However, it was authentically narrated that ʿUmar ibn al-Khaṭṭāb (رضي الله عنه) would strike the people’s hands so as to force them to eat in Rajab. He would say: “Do not make Rajab resemble Ramaḍān.” (Majmūʿ al-Fatāwá, vol. 25, pg. 290)

Ibn Rajab (رحمه الله) said: “There are no authentic reports stating that either the Prophet (ﷺ) or his Companions fasted specifically in Rajab.” (Laṭāʾif al-Maʿārif, pg. 118)

Because choosing to fast specifically in Rajab is venerating this month which is exactly what the polytheists did during the time of pre-Islamic ignorance, fasting specifically in Rajab is disliked.

Shaykh al-Islām Ibn Taymiyyah (رحمه الله) explains: “Venerating ʿĀshūrāʾ is disliked because the people of the book [i.e: the Jews] venerated it, and venerating Rajab is disliked because the polytheists venerated it.” (Iqtiḍāʾ al-Ṣirāṭ al-Mustaqīm, pg. 265)

He (رحمه الله) also said: “The Sunnah established that fasting specifically on a Friday and fasting specifically in Rajab is disliked. Even though fasting itself is a good deed, the Salaf disliked fasting on the days that the disbelievers held their festivals, since the Salaf avoided imitating the disbelievers and avoided venerating any illegitimate Islamic occasions.” (Al-Fatāwá al-Kubrá, vol. 6, pg. 180)

5) A Warning from Choosing to Pay Your Zakāh Specifically in Rajab

Ibn Rajab (رحمه الله) said: “As for paying Zakāh, then the people of this country made paying it customary in the month of Rajab which is not only baseless but is also not a practice of the Salaf.” (Laṭāʾif al-Maʿārif, pg. 120)

6) A Warning from Offering al-ʿAṭīrah

Ibn ʿAbd al-Barr (رحمه الله) mentioned: “All of the scholars say that the ruling of al-auḍḥiyah [i.e. the sacrifice done on ʿĪd al-Aḍḥá] abrogated al-ʿaṭīrah’s ruling. Al-ʿaṭīrah was a sacrifice that was done [by the polytheist] in the month of Rajab during the time of pre-Islamic ignorance. It was legislated in the early stages of Islām then abrogated.” (Al-Istidhkār, vol. 5, pg. 242)

Shaykh Muḥammad ibn Ṣāliḥ al-ʿUthaymīn (رحمه الله) said: “As for al-ʿaṭīrah which was a sacrifice that was done in the month of Rajab, then it was legislated in the early stages of Islām then abrogated; therefore, this sacrifice is outlawed.” (Liqāʾ al-Bāb al-Maftūḥ, 217)

7) A Warning from Perform ʿUmrah Specifically in Rajab

Shaykh Muḥammad ibn Ṣāliḥ al-ʿUthaymīn (رحمه الله) said:

Some of the Salaf said performing ʿUmrah in Rajab is a Sunnah. Others said doing so is not because if performing ʿUmrah in Rajab was a Sunnah, the Messenger (ﷺ) would have clarified that [which is not the case]. Performing ʿUmrah during the months of Ḥajj is better that performing ʿUmrah in Rajab because the Messenger (ﷺ) performed ʿUmrah in the months of Ḥajj. Regardless, I am unaware of a single clear proof that proves performing ʿUmrah [specifically] in Rajab is recommended. (Liqāʾ al-Bāb al-Maftūḥ, 217)

8) Visiting the Prophet’s (ﷺ) Masjid Specifically in Rajab

Shaykh Muḥammad ibn Ṣāliḥ al-ʿUthaymīn (رحمه الله) said: “Some people believe that visiting the Prophet’s (ﷺ) masjid specifically in Rajab is very virtuous; consequently, they flock from every part of the world towards it. They call this visit al-ziyārah al-rajabiyyah. This is an innovation. The early scholars were silent about this because it was introduced recently.” (Fatāwá Fī-al-Ḥajj, 660)

9) A Warning from Celebrating the Isrāʾ and the Miʿrāj and from Performing Specific Acts of Worship on the Twenty-Seventh Night of Rajab

There are only two Islamic celebrations. They occur on ʿĪd al-Fiṭr and ʿĪd al-Aḍḥá. Therefore, celebrating other occasions is an innovation.

Anas ibn Mālik (رضي الله عنه) reported:

When Allāh’s Messenger (ﷺ) came to Madīnah, the people played games on two days. He asked: “What is the significance of these two days?” They responded: “We would play games [on these two days] during the time of pre-Islamic ignorance.” Allāh’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: “Allāh has substituted these two days with two better days. They are the Day of Aḍḥá and the Day of Fiṭr.” (Reported by Ibn Mājah (1134), and Shaykh al-Albānī authenticated it.)

Shaykh al-Islām Ibn Taymiyyah (رحمه الله) said:

Celebrating any illegitimate occasions—such as celebrating the Prophet’s (ﷺ) birthday in Rabīʿ al-Awwal, or celebrating some of Rajab’s nights, or celebrating Rajab’s first Friday, or celebrating the eighteenth day of Dhū al-Ḥijjah, or celebrating the eighth day of Shawwāl which ignorant people have dubbed ʿĪd al-Abrār—is an innovation that not only did the Salaf dislike but never celebrated themselves. (Majmū‘ al-Fatāwá, vol. 25, pg. 298)

Ibn al-Ḥāj [d. 737 AH] stated: “From the innovations introduced in the month of Rajab is celebrating the twenty-seventh night which is [presumed to be] the night the Miʿrāj occurred.” (Al-Madkhal, vol. 1, pg. 194)

Ibn al-Naḥḥās [d. 814 AH] mentioned: “Celebrating this night is an innovation. The Shayāṭīn innovated this celebration.” (Tanbīh al-Ghafilīn, pg. 379)

Shaykh Ibn Bāz (رحمه الله) said: “Celebrating the twenty-seventh night of Rajab which many people believed to be the night that the Isrāʾ and the Miʿrāj occurred is an innovation. [Also,] performing any specific acts of worship on that night is impermissible.” (Al-Taḥdhīr min al-Bidaʿ, pg. 45)

Shaykh Muḥammad ibn Ṣāliḥ al-ʿUthaymīn (رحمه الله) said: “Having celebrations on the twenty-seventh night of Rajab is an innovation.” (Liqāʾ al-Bāb al-Maftūḥ, 217)

The exact date the Isrāʾ and the Miʿrāj occurred is unknown, so how can one celebrate these events or perform specific acts of worship on that night if we assume that is allowed in the first place?!

Ibn Ḥajar (رحمه الله) said: “Some storytellers mentioned that the Isrāʾ occured in Rajab. This is a lie.” (Tabyīn al-ʿAjab, pg. 9)

Ibn al-Qayyim (رحمه الله) reported that Ibn Taymiyyah (رحمه الله) said:

There are no known authentic reports specifying which month, or which ten day period, or which exact night the Isrāʾ occurred; rather, the reports concerning this are contradictory and weak. They are inconclusive. Therefore, the Muslims should refrain from perform any specific prayers or perform any other acts of worship on this night based on the assumption that the Isrāʾ occurred on this night.” (Zād al-Maʿād, vol. 1, pg. 58)

Ibn Rajab (رحمه الله) said: “It was reported in a weak Ḥadīth that the Isrāʾ occured on the twenty-seventh of Rajab.” (Laṭāʾif al-Maʿārif, pg. 121)

Shaykh Muḥammad ibn Ṣāliḥ al-ʿUthaymīn (رحمه الله) said: “As for the Isrāʾ and the Miʿrāj which most people believe occurred on the twenty-seventh night of Rajab, then this date is baseless. The most correct opinion is that the Isrāʾ and the Miʿrāj occurred in Rabīʿ al-Awwal [i.e. the third month of the Islamic calendar].” (Liqāʾ al-Bāb al-Maftūḥ, 217)

Therefore, performing specific acts of worship during Rajab and venerating some of its nights is an innovation, and innovation causes misguidance, and misguidance leads to the Fire. Allāh’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: “Newly invented affairs are the worst of affairs, and every newly invented affair is an innovation, and every innovation causes misguidance, and misguidance leads to the Fire.” (Reported by al-Nasāʾī (1578) with this exact wording, and Shaykh al-Albānī authenticated it.)

Finally, there are numerous strange inauthentic reports, as Ibn Ḥajar (رحمه الله) described them, mentioning specific events that allegedly occurred in the month of Rajab. Ibn Rajab (رحمه الله), summarising some of these reports, said: “There are numerous reports all of which are inauthentic mentioning specific significant events that occurred in Rajab. It was reported that:

  1. The Prophet (ﷺ) was born on Rajab’s first night
  2. The Prophet (ﷺ) became a Prophet in Rajab
  3. The Isrāʾ occurred in Rajab
  4. Rajab’s tenth night is the Night of Decree
  5. The disbelievers would supplicate against their oppressors in Rajab
    (Laṭāʾif al-Maʿārif, pg. 121)

Therefore, not only must we avoid committing any innovations in Rajab, but we must also be aware of these false claims.

Published: February 13, 2022
Edited: February 13, 2022

Comments

Subscribe
Notify of
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Most Popular: Last 30 Days

wp-content/uploads/2022/05/benefit_hajjumrahselfies-intro.jpg

Ḥajj and ʿUmrah Selfies

Al-ʿAllāmah ʿAbdullāh al-B…
wp-content/uploads/2007/07/dates_lantern.jpg

Means of Sustenance

Al-ʿAllāmah Muḥammad ibn ʿ…
wp-content/uploads/2017/01/man_flower.jpg

The Importance of Clinging to the Qurʾān …

Al-ʿAllāmah Rabīʿ ibn Hādī…
wp-content/uploads/2014/09/islam_window.jpg

Cling to the Sunnah and the Ṣahabah

Al-ʿAllāmah Muḥammad ibn ʿ…
wp-content/uploads/2014/10/basmala.jpg

ʿAqīdah First

Al-ʿAllāmah Muḥammad Amān …

Ḥajj and ʿUmrah Selfies

Al-ʿAllāmah ʿAbdullāh al-B…

Means of Sustenance

Al-ʿAllāmah Muḥammad ibn ʿ…

The Importance of Clinging to the Qurʾān …

Al-ʿAllāmah Rabīʿ ibn Hādī…


© TROID. All rights reserved.

Back to Top