The New Islamic Year (1421 fter Hijrah)



All praise is for Allah, the Lord and Cherisher of the Universe. We praise Him and seek His help and forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allah from the evil of ourselves and the wickedness of our own deeds. Whomever Allah guides, cannot be lead astray and whomever Allah does not guide, none can guide him. I bear witness that none has the right to be worshipped except Allah, alone without associate, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His Messenger. May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, his household, his companions and all those who follow them in righteousness till the Day of Judgment.

I wish my Muslim brothers and sisters a happy new and prosperous Islamic calendar year in advance. May Allah give us long life, and make us good Muslims. The year 1420 A. H. has come and almost gone; many things have happened and are still happening to us as an individual and as a community, this will continue till the Day of Judgment. The number of years that Allah has decreed for each of us is decreasing; so, how are we preparing to meet Allah, the Exalted? Do we remember death at all or are we busy planning things we will do in years ahead? Are we doing our responsibilities to Allah and fellow human being? These are some of the questions a Muslim should ask him-/herself everyday and make adjustment accordingly.

Allah commanded our beloved prophet (PBUH) thus:

"Therefore give admonition in case the admonition profits (the hearer). The admonition will be received by those who fear (Allah): But it will be avoided by those most unfortunate ones. Who will enter the Great Fire". Q87:9-12.

I would like to remind all of us the following verses from the Holy Qur'an.

"O mankind! Worship your Lord(Allah), Who created you and those before you so that you may become pious". Q2:21

"O ye who believe! Fear Allah and let every person look to what (provision) he has sent forth for the morrow. Fear Allah: for Allah is well acquainted with (all) that ye do. And be ye not like those who forget Allah; and He made them forget their own souls! Such are the rebellious transgressors! Not equal are the Companions of the Fire and the Companions of the Paradise: it is the Companions of the Paradise that will achieve Felicity". Q59:18-20

"O ye who believe! Save yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel are Men and Stones over which are (appointed) angels stern (and) severe who flinch not (from executing) the Commands they receive from Allah but do (precisely) what they are commanded". Q66:6

"O ye who believe! Turn to Allah with sincere repentance: in the hope that your Lord will remove from you your ills and admit you to Gardens beneath which Rivers flow (Paradise)...". Q66:8

"Everyone shall taste death: and only on the Day of Judgment shall you be paid your full recompense.  And whoever is removed from the Fire and admitted to Paradise, he indeed is successful. The life of this world is only the enjoyment of deception". Q3:185

"That Day (the Day of Judgment) shall a man flee from his own brother, and from his mother and his father and from his wife and his children. Each one of them that Day will have enough concern (of his own) to make him indifferent to the others". Q80:34-37

"By (the Token of) time (through the Ages). Verily Man is in loss.  Except such as have Faith and do righteous deeds and (join together) in the mutual teaching of Truth and of Patience and Constancy". Q103:1-3

"Verily, We have warned you of a Penalty near the Day when man will see (the Deeds) which his hands have sent forth and the Unbeliever will say "Woe unto me! Would that I were (mere) dust!" Q78:40


Allah, the Exalted, says:

"The number of months in the sight of Allah is twelve (in a year) so ordained by Him the day He created the heavens and the earth; of them four are sacred; that is the straight usage.  So wrong not yourselves therein and fight the pagans all together as they fight you all together. But know that Allah is with those who restrain themselves". Q9:36

The twelve Islamic months are Muharram, Safar, Rabil-Awwal, Rabil-Thanni, Jumadal-Awwal, Jumadal-Thanni, Rajab, Shaban, Ramadan, Shawwal, Dhul-Qadah and Dhul-Hijjah. The four holy months, in which war is prohibited, are Rajab, Dhul-Qadar, Dhul- Hijjah and Muharram. Hijrah means migration. Our beloved prophet Muhammad (PBUH) emigrated from Makkah to Medinah when the persecution of Muslims by the pagans in Makkah became unbearable. The Hjrah happened around September, 622 C.E and it is important in Islamic history because the people of Madinah accepted the Prophet and the Muslims and an Islamic State was established. The Islamic calendar depends on the moon and the difference between one Islamic calendar year and one Gregorian calendar year is about 11 days.

Unfortunately, the counting of the Islamic calendar or the sighting of the moon has become a controversial issue so much that Muslims in the same country have celebrated Eid Adha on different days. Muslims should not limit the activity of sighting the moon to Ramadan alone, the activity should be a continuous exercise that should be done every month and every year because many acts of worship depend on it. It is not too much if a permanent office for sighting and monitoring the moon is established in each Muslim country. Science and sufficient recorded data from physical sighting can be studied and used to arrive at a more reliable method and guideline for sighting the moon.


Our beloved prophet Muhammad (PBUH) recommended fasting on the 9th, 10th and 11th, or only on the 10th of Muharram, the first month of the Hijrah calendar, according to the following ahadith:

Abu Hurairah (RA) reported: "I asked the Prophet: 'Which prayer is the best after the obligatory prayers?' He said: 'Prayer during the middle of the night.' I asked: 'Which fast is the best after the fast of Ramadan?' He said, 'Fast in the month of Allah that you call Muharram.'" (Muslim hadith 2611).

Aisha (RA) narrated: "Allah's Apostle ordered (the Muslims) to fast on the day of 'Ashura', and when fasting in the month of Ramadan was prescribed, it became optional for one to fast on that day ('Ashura') or not." (Bukhari 3.219).

Ibn 'Abbas reported: "The Prophet came to Madinah and found the Jews fasting on the day of 'Ashura'. He said to them: 'What is this fast?' They said: 'A great day. Allah saved Moses and the tribes of Israel from their enemies on this day and therefore, Moses fasted on this day.' The Prophet said: 'We have more of a right to Moses than you,' so he fasted on that day also and ordered the people to fast on that day". (Bukhari 5.279)

Abu Qatadah (RA) reported: "Our beloved prophet was asked about observing the fast on the tenth day of Muharram and answered, 'It atones for the sins of the preceding year". (Muslim)

Let us remember our brothers and sisters all over the world where Muslims are oppressed in our prayers. May Allah strengthen and assist them against the oppressors. The safety of the Muslims in the world now is a question that every Muslim should be concern about. Some few years back, atrocity against Muslims happened in Bosnia Herzegovina, then in Kosovo and now it is in Chechnya. Only Allah knows which country will be next. We should reflect on this and take precautions. Allah enjoins Jihad, but most of us hate it whereas Jihad is the roof that protects the five pillars of Islam and the dignity of the Muslims. We all know what will happen when the roof of a house is removed. Our beloved prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was reported to have said:

"He who dies in the defense of his property is a martyr, he who dies in his own defense is a martyr, he who dies in defense of his faith is a martyr, he who dies in defense of his family is a martyr". (Abu Dawood hadith 4754).

"Our Lord! we have wronged our own souls: if Thou forgive us not and bestow not upon us Thy mercy we shall certainly be of the losers." Q7:23

Our Lord! Pour forth on us patience, and set firm our feet and make us victorious over the disbelieving people. Q2:250

Our Lord! condemn us not if we forget or fall into error; our Lord! Lay not on us a burden like that which Thou didst lay on those before us; Our Lord! Lay not on us a burden greater than we have strength to bear.  Blot out our sins and grant us forgiveness. Have mercy on us.  Thou art our Protector; help us against those who stand against faith. Q2:286

Our Lord! Give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter and save us from the torment on the Hell Fire! Q2:201