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Information on the Islamic Months


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12 - Dhul- Hijjah


Zul Hijjah | Great Opportunities for Great Profits  Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Rahmatullahi 'alayh

Zul Hijjah | The 10 Sacred Days  Hazrat Maulana Abdul Hamid Is`haq Saheb Daamat Barakaatuhum

The First Ten Days of Zul-Hijjah  Shaykh Muhammad Saleem Dhorat hafizahullah

4 things to do on the blessed days of Dhul Hijjah

Sunnats & Aadaab of Dhul Hijjah

Dhikr: The Hallmark Of The Days Of Dhul Hijjah


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The Islamic Calendar 
Living in the West, we are all familiar with the Gregorian calendar, the years, the months, even the dates which are significant to people of other faiths. The real question is, how many of us are familiar with the Islamic Calendar?
Can we say that we know the significant dates in Islam or the names of the months? In fact, how many of us know which Islamic month or year we are currently in? We all know when it is Ramadaan and maybe Dhul Hijjah, but what about the other months?
Consider the following:
  • A child reaches adulthood in Islam on their 15th Islamic birthday if they haven’t experienced any of the natural signs
  • Our Zakaat is payable once every Islamic Year
  • Our obligatory fasting begins on the 1st of Ramadaan and ends on the 1st of Shawwaal
  • Our obligatory pilgrimage (Hajj) takes places between the 8th and 12th of Dhul Hijjah
Bearing the above in mind, as Muslims, it is imperative for us to familiarize ourselves with our Islamic Calendar.
The Origin of the Islamic Calendar
On one occasion, Abu Musa al-Ashari radiyallahu anhu wrote a letter to Umar radiyallahu anhu, when he was the Ameer ul-Mu’mineen. In the letter, he mentioned that the letters of Umar radiyallahu anhu reach him, but the letters were not dated.
Hence, in the 17th year of Hijrah, Umar radiyallahu anhu gathered the Sahabah radiyallahu anhum to discuss how to set a date, in other words, how to fix the Islamic calendar.
The first point of discussion was when should the Islamic calendar start, i.e., what should be the first year. Some of the opinions were as follows:
  • From the birth of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam
  • From the time Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam received Prophethood
  • From the time of the Hijrah - Migration to Madinah Munawwarah
  • From the demise of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam
Regarding setting the date from the birth of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, Umar radiyallahu anhu didn’t like this opinion as this would resemble the Christians.
Regarding setting the date from the demise of Raslullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, Umar radiyallahu anhu didn’t prefer this either, as the passing away of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam was a blow to the Ummah.
After the discussion, Umar radiyallahu anhu came to the decision that the Islamic calendar should commence from the Hijrah. The reason being that the Hijrah marked the beginning of the rise and honour of Islam. The Sahabah radiyallahu anhum unanimously agreed with his opinion.
The First month
Now that the first year had been determined i.e. After the Hijrah, which month should be the first in the Islamic calendar?
If analogical reasoning was used, the first month should be Rabi ul Awwal as this was the month in which Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam migrated to Madinah Munawwarah. However, the actual intention for migration was made by Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam in the month of Muharram.
In the 13th year of Prophethood, the Ansar (from Madinah) had taken the pledge of allegiance with Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam on the 10th of Dhul Hijjah. At the end of Dhul Hijjah, the Ansar returned to Madinah Munawwarah after completing Hajj.
A few days later, in the month of Muharram, Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam made the intention to migrate to Madinah Munawwarah and granted permission to the Sahabah t to also migrate. Therefore, it was decided that the first month of the Islamic calendar should be Muharram.
This was the opinion of both Uthman radiyallahu anhu and Ali radiyallahu anhu. Other Sahabah radiyallahu anhum suggested that the year should start with the month of Ramadan, however Umar radiyallahu anhu said it should be the month of Muharram, as this is the month in which the pilgrims return from Hajj. The Sahabah radiyallahu anhu unanimously agreed with his opinion.
(Source: The Islamic Calendar)
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