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Why would Nabi (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) fast extra in Sha’ban?

Question

I heard that Nabi (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) would fast more in Sha’ban than in other months. What is the reason for this?

 

Answer

Sayyidatuna ‘Aaishah (radiyallahu’anha) reports that I never saw Nabi (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) fasting in any other month as much as he did in Sha’ban.’

(Sahih Bukhari, Hadith: 1969 and Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2714).

 

Among the reasons given for this are the following:

1. It is the best month to fast outside Ramadan.

2. Since Sha’ban is sandwiched between Rajab and Ramadan, and their virtues are well known. It is therefore, a month in which people are not as particular. Hence, Nabi (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) would display its importance in this manner.

3. It is a month in which the deeds of mankind are presented to Allah Ta’ala [for special consideration/forgiveness].

4. Just as there are nafl/sunnah salahs before and after the Fard salahs, similarly, there are optional fasts before Ramadan and after. (in Sha’ban and the 6 fasts of Shawwal).

5. Another reason for Nabi (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) increasing his optional fast in Sha’ban was to prepare for Ramadan.

6. To respectfully welcome Ramadan.

7. To make it easier for his wives to fast their qada fasts from the previous Ramadan.

(Lataiful Ma’arif, pg.249-258 & Fathul Bari, Hadith: 1969)

The first three reasons, and the last one are derived from clear Hadiths on this topic.

 

Note: One should avoid fasting after the 15th of Sha’ban, so that strength may be preserved for Ramadan.

(Sunan Nasai, Hadith: 2923)

 

See an inspirational article on this topic here.

 

 

And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,

 

Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar