Shab-e-Mairaj: What did the Prophet(s) do?

By Asma bint Shameem

Indeed, one night the Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) was granted the Night Journey of al-Israa’ wal Mi’raaj, when he was first transported from Masjid al-Haraam to Masjid al-Aqsa and then onwards, he ascended to the Heavens and Allaah spoke to him as He willed, and enjoined the five daily prayers upon him.
This is definitely part of our Aqeedah. It says so in the Qur’aan [al-Isra':1] and there is no denying that fact.

However, the big question to ask is…….
What did the Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) do when the same day arrived the next year? Or the year after that? Or the year after that?
Did he EVER celebrate the night of al-Israa’ wal Mi’raaj, or fast the next day???
And what did he instruct the Sahaabah to do about his Night Journey?
Did he tell them to celebrate that night as a ’special night’ for worshipping Allaah?
Did he tell them to specifically fast the next day because it was ‘the day after the Journey’?
And what were the actions of the Sahaabah themselves?
Did THEY do any of the above??
The answer to all of the above is a big resounding NO!

Surely the Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) did not omit or forget anything in the deen! Surely he did not hide anything from mankind!

The Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) said, “There is nothing that brings you closer to Jannah except that I have informed you about it and there is nothing that brings you closer to the fire of Hell except that I have warned you against it.” (at-Tabaraani–Saheeh)

Then why do we not have ANY Saheeh reports of the Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) or the Sahaabah worshipping Allaah especially on this night and fasting the next day?

ANSWER: BECAUSE THAT WAS NOT THE PRACTICE OF RASUL ALLAAH (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) OR HIS SAHAABAH!

If celebrating it was something that is prescribed in Islam, the Messenger (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) would certainly have told his ummah about it, either in word or in deed. If any such thing had happened, it would have been well known, and his companions would have transmitted the information to us. They narrated from the Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) everything that we need to know, and they did not neglect any aspect of the religion, rather they were the first ones to do anything good. If celebrating this night had been prescribed in Islam, they would have been the first people to do so.

And if it wasn’t the practice of our Beloved Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) or his Sahaabah, then, why, O Muslim, do YOU insist on doing it???

Isn’t the Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) the best example to be followed?

“In the Messenger of Allah you have a fine example for he who hopes for Allah and the Last Day and remembers Allah abundantly.” (Surah al-Ahzaab: 21)

But everyone does so!!
Sure, I know, you have seen your fathers and grandfathers doing so. But, let me remind you, O Muslim, that it is NOT our forefathers that we are supposed to follow. Rather, our worship should be based on proofs from the Quraan and authentic Sunnah, and NOT culture or tradition.

“When it is said to them: ‘Follow what Allah has sent down,’ they reply: ‘We will follow that which we found our fathers upon,’ even though their fathers did not understand anything nor were they guided.” (Surah al-Baqarah: 170)

Is good intention enough??
I know beyond doubt, that in celebrating this night, your intention is good. But dear brother/sister, in order for our worship to be accepted, it also has to be prescribed in the Qur’aan and Sunnah. If it is not so, it will be rejected.

The Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) said: “Whoever introduces anything into this matter of ours that is not part of it will have it rejected.” (Bukhaari, Muslim)

Exact date unknown???
Also, do you know that even though the incidence of al-Israa’ wal Mi’raaj is an undeniable fact in history, yet the exact date or even the exact month in which this took place is not certain?

Shaykh ‘Abd al-’Azeez ibn Baaz said:
“With regard to this night on which the Isra’ and Mi’raaj took place, there is nothing in the saheeh ahaadeeth to indicate that it is in Rajab or in any other month. Everything that has been narrated concerning a specific date for these events cannot be proven to have come from the Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) according to the scholars of hadeeth….” (Islam-qa)

But, what’s the harm in it???
Now, some of you will say, “What’s the harm in it? I am just worshipping Allah!”

But, the answer to that, O noble reader, is…..
“And whosoever opposes the Messenger (Muhammad Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) after the right path has been shown clearly to him, and follows other than the believers’ way, We shall keep him in the path he has chosen, and burn him in Hell – what an evil destination!” [Surah an-Nisaa:115]

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen says: “Fasting on the twenty-seventh of Rajab and spending that night in prayer is a bid’ah (innovation), and every bid’ah is a going astray.” (Majmoo’ Fataawa , 20/440)


So, remember, my dear brothers and sisters in Islaam, DO NOT single out the 27th for your worship because it was NOT the practice of the Prophet OR his Sahaabah.

If however, you pray every single night and it is part of your routine to stay up for worship, then there is no harm. Similarly, if you are in the habit of fasting Mondays and Thursdays, or during Ayyaam Beed (the 13th, 14th, and 15th of every Islaamic month), and the 27th of Rajab falls on one of those days, then it is OK to do so.

The problem arises when one thinks that this night is special and singles out this night or day for worship, thinking they are getting extra reward for their worship. But this is contrary to the Sunnah.

Audio Lecture by Dr.Farhat Hashmi

Rajab or Shab e Mairaj Mp3-Audio

Flash Presentation in English: Rajab And Mairaj

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35 thoughts on “Shab-e-Mairaj: What did the Prophet(s) do?

  1. I apologize in advance if the truth that i m going to speak hurts someone.

    It looks like this sister is self-righteous. even if someone is performing prayers or fasting for extra rewards what is wrong with it; imagine same person watch movie or going to dinner party instead; what is better. Sister please dont try to be so assertive in matters of religion; on the one hand you say; we dont know exact month year or time, on the other you are so definitive in asking muslims to refrain from ibaadah. I am sorry it is a myopic view and you are totally out of this current time. If you want to guide muslims’ ask them not to lie, not to cheat, not to steal; dont ask them not to pray. I hope you understand what i mean. Please do not judge that those who pray on this night are gumrrah or deviant; remember they are praying not partying. As to the question of reward or extra reward; the pure worship of the Almight Allah should be without any greed for reward or without the fear of going to hell. How many of us meet this high standard?? Because of such controversies we Muslims have suffered a lot and we are still suffering. Important thing is to be good human being morally and spiritually.

    A humble Muslim

    • I fully agree in the message you are putting across, you are right in saying that it is better for people to stay at home in prayer rather than partying etc. However, do not lot the bluntness of the message portrayed by the Sister throw you off the core meaning of it. The take home message from the post is to not specifically single out this night for special prayer. Obviously, there is nothing wrong with supererogatory prayers, however, praying on this night which is purported to be Shab-e-Miraj is an act of bidah. Bidah is strange in the sense that it can seem that one is doing a great amount of good, however, innovating on the Message, which is wholly perfect sent by Prophet S.A.W is in fact a big misguidance.

      I understand your point of view fully, but I think we need to draw a clear line on what is innovation and what is pure fact.

      Salaam

    • Assalam o Alaika

      Jazak Allah Khairun

      Mr Muhamma Farooq,

      I agree with you. The optional prayers (nawafil) we offer in this night are only and only for the purpose of sawab or to Thank HIM, or to ask forgiveness, nothing more than that. Many muslims send Darood o Salam to Hazrat Muhammad SAW..I do not think there is anything wrong in that. And we all know that this is “Nafal Ibadah” means..if we offer we’re granted sawab if we don’t “no hunag” then how can we call it “bid’ah’?

      Allah knows the best.

      regards,
      Kiran Fatimah.

      • Dear Sister in Islam,

        Pray and worship on this day too, but do not single it out specially. Pray on other days as well, but if you are going to take out one or two days out of the year, which are Shab e Meraj and “Shab e Barat” then definitely there is innovation and bid’ah.

    • Assalam Alay kum.. bro Humble Muslim..

      Yes I Fully Agree with u.. but tell me… why that day… ? reply me bro…
      Why only on 27 or 28… why not 22 or 24.. ?

    • bhai i think u haven read the haith above as it says“And whosoever opposes the Messenger (Muhammad Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) after the right path has been shown clearly to him, and follows other than the believers’ way, We shall keep him in the path he has chosen, and burn him in Hell – what an evil destination!” [Surah an-Nisaa:115]
      so if are worshipping that night means u are opposing prophet (muhammad sal allaahu alaihi wassaallam).u are deviating thew path he has shown.u are doing against the right path shown by him.

    • Brother you took it wrongly. She just means to say that we shouldn’t regard it as one of the important worships which we all do. When this night arrives we indulge ourselevs in Astaghfaar and recitation of Quran including offering Nawafils don’t we? Why not choose 28th of Rajab to stay up all night and worship Allah that way?
      And i believe she never declared them deviant who worship on this night, she only persists that this shouldn’t be taken as an obligation.
      I agree with you on saying that people stay at home rather partying all night long but can you declare it an obligation? You can’t brother.
      The point is, we are not told to worship on Shab-e-Mairaj. If one wishes to do so, he can. But at least don’t make it popular as an obligation. We are passing on wrong customs to our children which will last till this world ends!

  2. JAZAKALLAH kairun,

    Inshallah may all believer muslim avoid bidah and follow the straight path of our beloved prophet huzoor sallallahu wa alayhi wassalam.

    INSHALLAH ameen.

  3. Please dont argue on this matter. If some one is not aware about the fazilah of shab e meraj they must accept that they do not know the fact instead of concluding that they are right and others are on biddah.

    May Allah bless all of us with the light of knowledge.

    Aameen

    • assalamualaikum, dear bro, you tell me what is the “fazilah” of this night? i dont seem to be knowing any “fazilah’ of this night. Did our beloved prophet Muhammad(SAW) state any fazilah regarding this night? please let us know with the reference of authentic hadith. we’ll be thankful! if praying on this night had any extra fazilah other than normal regular prayers have, prophet Muhammad( SAW) would have recommended us to perform “extra prayers” for “extra fazilah”. did he(SAW) do so?? please teach us all whom u think dont know at all in this regard. jazakallah khair.

  4. i have searching for this topic for a long time,and finally Alhumdollilah i got it.

    May Allah reward you for your good deeds sister.

  5. Looks really sad when we are so reluctant to celebrate few auspicious days we have…

    when it comes to celebrating aniversarys/bdays… alls cool

    Biddah is what we have for everything when it comes to celebrating our rasools miraj ?

    Apka imman mukamal nahi jab tak aap sab se zyada muhabbat apne khuda aur uske payre nabi se nahe karoge.

    khuda aap sab ko sacha ashik e rasool banaye…ameen

  6. I totally agree with Muhammad Farooq, i may not say that i am knowledgeable to perdict today is that night or when it was, but i am definetly sure that even if a person waste his or her time everyday, but still manages to pray on this occasion thinking he might be heard or for any cause. Then Allah knows best how to Judge him, It is for Allah to decide, we can’t be so sure that his prayer won’t be accepted or it’s better to avoid praying, it is better to pray any time on any occasion.

  7. ASkm, Dear Brother Farooq, As u have already read above
    Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen says: “Fasting on the twenty-seventh of Rajab and spending that night in prayer is a bid’ah (innovation), and every bid’ah is a going astray.” (Majmoo’ Fataawa , 20/440)

    Its a ” BID’AH ” DOnt match such relegious matters with your partying stuff, May Allah all mighty give you Hidayah & show yout the straight path.

  8. And in India i have seen many of our muslim brothers & sisters commiting such Bid’ah & above that they stay awake all night until fajar prayer just cracking jokes with one another & when it azaan’s for the Fajr prayer everyone runs of to their home to sleep, and the next day they call names to people who dont commit such bid’ah. May Allah give hidayah to all.

  9. Dear Brother farooq,

    “We Muslims have to pray 5 farz prayers every day , Wld you make it 7 & pray 7 everyday & think u wld get extra reward for the changes u made” The Answer is NO u wont get reward for such Bid’ah, you dont have any right to make changes in Islam.
    So please follow the straight path that has been mentioned in the quran.

  10. There is no specific fasting prescribed for night of Isra wal Miraaj. It is an innovation in Islam. Infact we are not even certian that 27th Rajab was really night of Miraaj.

  11. As-Salamu Alaykum

    Actions Speak louder than words. Humble people don’t carry out personal attacks so please don’t insult those who are humble.
    Again this is how Shaytan gets us. Whats the harm in singling out another night as a special night of worship or saying that comeon this maybe a Bid’ah but it is something good. Its not about our ‘Aql. Its like saying Isha has 4 rak’ahs but why don’t I do something extra and pray 8. Or lets just say I am strong I can fast till Isha and not Maghrib. Allah knows my intentions I want to please him more than other people. ‘Aql tells us this is something good but this is not how the Prophet Sallallahu Alayhi WaSallam did it.
    So doing such actions is not acceptable. If anyone prays occasionally from time to time at night without singling out special dates (other than the ones mentioned in Shariah/Sunnah) then they may do so as a part of a regular practice but again the intention should not be of doing it on that night considering it special. If anyone does that, there maybe no harm and Allah knows Best.

    Again, lets remind us of the Hadith where the Prophet Alayhis Salam said(interpretation) “The one amongst you who believes in Allah and the last day, let him say that which is good or stay quiet”

  12. AA, I am thankful to all brothers and sisters who spared their valuable time to read my comments and expressed their opinions.

    I have one question for you all. Don’t you think Night of Miraj or Shab-e-Isra is a special night in the life of our Holy Prophet( Peace be upon him), can anyone deny it? I have second question for you all. Don’t you think Night of Miraj or Shab-e-Miraj or Shab-e-Isra is important in the history of Islam?

    In my humble opinion, as to the hiyat-e-tayyaba of our Holy Prophet, this event in his life ( in contemporary language )would be called Life Time Achievement Award – though it is much more important than we humans can possibly comprehend and as to the history of Islam; this night has spiritual and political significance; this is the night when our Rasool SAW led all other prophets of Allah in prayers at the Aqsa Mosque – this is the symbolic of dominance of Islam over other divine religions for the simple reason that our Prophet SAW is the last prophet and he occupies a position higher than all other prophets – its spiritual significance is the moment when all curtains between Allah the creator and Prophet SAW were raised and it was the night five times prayers were ordained. No doubt it is a special night; had it been ordinary night our prophet would not have mentioned Shab-e=Isra and he would not provided us all the details of the events that took place night; if it would not have been special night, it would not have been mentioned in the Holy Quran. So I hope you all agree that it is a special night from all angles.

    Now those who think that there is no need of celebration / extra nawafils as it is bidah I ask them a question; ok we dont want to do any ibadaah because you say it may be innovation; and it is a special night that highlighted the greatness of our Holy Prophet so what do you suggest; how should we commemorate this special night? What should we do if we dont recite the Holy Quran or send darud or perform extra nawafil to keep night vigil, what should we do? Please tell us what alternative activity should we do. Please dont say dont do anything, We love our Holy Prohphet and it was the greatest night of his life when he was physically in presence of Allah, and we do want to remember it and we want our kids to know it. So what should we do?? I am not a scholar and i dont pretend to be one, all i am looking for is a straightforward answer.

    A humble Muslim

  13. Dear Mr Mehmood

    Nawafils (optional prayers) are not same as Faraz prayers (obligatory prayers), no one offers faraz prayers except those prescribed in the Shariat . So I do not understand the reason why you have given the example of increasing the number of faraz prayer rakats. This is not the issue.

    Dear Mr Abdullah

    You have also given a similar example so you will find your answer as above that i gave to Br. Mehmood.

    My comments do not show disrespect to anyone what to speak of insulting anyone. Rest assured I am humblest of creatures and have no good deed(s) in my account to claim mercy of Allah I just seek His mercy and forgiveness for myself and for all of us. After all we are here talking about the ways and means to earn His pleasure. I know this forum has certain constraints so i cannot go beyond what i have already said. May Allah show me the path that leads to His pleasure and I have same heart felt prayers for all of you brothers and sisters. W.Salam

  14. yes Farooq Alhamdulillah this forum has constraints and rest-assured, the innovators won’t find it pleasing by any means Inshallah. May Allah guide the innovators or destroy them.

  15. “its spiritual significance is the moment when all curtains between Allah the creator and Prophet SAW were raised ”

    This is a Super Lie mate!

    It was narrated that ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) said: “Whoever told you that Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) saw his Lord was lying. He said that no vision can grasp him [cf. al-An’aam 6:103]…”

    (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, al-Tawheed, 6832).

    It was narrated that Abu Dharr said: “I asked the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), ‘Did you see your Lord?’ He said, ‘ He is veiled by Light, how could I see Him.’” (Narrated by Muslim, al-Eeman, 261).

    And about the need to comemorate, anyone who thinks he loves the Prophet Peace be upon him and Islam more than the Companions of the Prophet is seriously deviant. Rasoolullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi WaSallam was alive for many years after the incident of Al-Israa’ Wal-Mi’raaj and he didn’t feel the need to comemorate this night nor did his Companions, the last of whom died over a 100 years after this incident, so what makes you think we need to come up and say that hey the Sahaba didn’t know better we need to comemorate it.

    Don’t make it a matter of your ego and try to accept the truth !

  16. Pingback: What is Bidah(Innovation) in Islam? « a i R e V A j

  17. All muslim follow the straight path of our beloved prophet huzoor sallallahu wa alayhi wassalam..

    Even innovating something good is also not allowed in Islam because Allah has already shown us the best way to lead life through prophet Muhammad SAW…Allah rewards only those who follow Quran and Sunnah…

  18. AA

    Any plus or minus in sunnah is not permissible; anyone breaking this rule and indulging in innovation is not following the true spirit of the religion. It is the obligation of every Muslim to guide such persons.

    Shab-e-Miraj is a night of great significance where there was direct contact between the Creator and the creature (all curtain raised) there was no intermediary (i.e. Gabriel AS) between Allah and His Messenger SAW

    I believe in my heart and mind that we should not attribute any Ibadah to this night as we dont have any reports of such Sunnah and i said in first line, any plus and minus in Sunnah is not allowed. I myself have never seen my father or my grand father to make any special arrangement for Shab-e-Miraj nor I myself do the same.

    I believe that our Holy Prohet SAW preached the religion of Islam with great humility and our preachers
    will be following the Sunnah if they try to emulate his example of humility. It is very easy to brand anyone gumrah, deviant and infidel but it does not serve the cause of preaching. I believe that those who are practicing any “plus or minus” are doing so out of lack of knowledge, education and training, and not becuase they love the Holy Prophet less than others.
    So preacher should not lose his/her patience and instead of delivering brand names and alienating them, try to befriend them and show what is right and what is wrong. I have seen it many a times that our preachers consider themselves and pose themselves as if they are over and above everyone, they should understand that whatever they are doing is for the pleausre of Allah and Allah knows better. The best every preacher that walked on earth is the Holy Prophet, SAW, learn from his example how he preached.Allah is not pleased with those human beings who demean fellow human beings; Religion can be taught and not imposed. This is the message that i want to communicate; I know it might be a cry in the wilderness; let it be.

  19. Dear admin.

    Jazakallah. Thats authentic proof for the people thinking by theirself about praying and fastening on such holy night.

    I blieave every thing in islam is black and white for all those who believe in listening more to others saying and expressing values of islam more then existing one. Hope I am not being offensive to any brother or sister. Islam is not that complicated . faith and truth can make you fallow the right path.

    Alhamdulillah

  20. @Muhammad Farooq
    You summarised it quite rightly by saying ‘NO’ plus minus is allowed in the sunnah :)…
    @SAM:
    (when it comes to celebrating aniversarys/bdays… alls cool ) u are right in saying that we celebrate these events which is also an act of satan…as we do ”ISRAAF”…
    and my dear brother….Love The PROPHET(S.AA.W) but please dont let this love take u to a path where u practice something which is not a part of the deen brought by the PROPHET(S.AA.W) as this would be counted as not trusting the PROPHET(S.AA.W) NAuzo-biLLah. stay happy and blessed :)

  21. Assalam O Alaikum, JazakaAllah kairin…..MashaAllah very nicely conveyed article that leaves no question for someone who wants to believe in what Allah and our beloved Prophet(PBUH) has taught us. Adding something to the religion, ibadah or any thing which is not told or practiced by our beloved Prophet (PBUH) or sahaba is Bidaat. Our religion is our Allah’s teaching not man made so no human can add up additional ibadah for extra reward. ALLAH KNOWS BEST. MAY ALLAH GUIDE US ÀLL TO THE RIGHT PATH. AMEEN

  22. We(pakistani. indian.bangladesh.afghan muslims) are always looking for shortcuts and we did’nt spare islam either. these kind of celebrations are shortcuts and have become the part of our lives and anyone who deny them, is called wahabi. there is no shortcut in deen neither to success.

  23. all the things which were mentioned on this page were very authentic and true to my belief…each and every extract has its authentication from where it had been taken from…i m totally satisfied about not doing any ibadah on this very particular day as it is clearly showing signs of biddah…n if we wanna really pray then we can pray every night as usual(for those who offer tahajjud every night) but our intention should be to pray the nawafil prayers and not really intending to pray nawfil prayrs on the occation of shabe baraat…. i m not a knowledgeable person though i believe that it is right not to be awake at this specified particular night…JAZAKALLAH wa KHAIR..!! i m not pinpointing any of the brother or the sister….just sharing up my views n thats it..!!

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