Muharram is the first month with which the Muslims begin their lunar Hijrah Calendar. It is one of the four sanctified months mentioned in the Holy Quran. Muharram is also known as “the month of Allah” in which divine blessings, dignity, and generosity increases and become abundant. Muharram is one of the months that has mentioned in the Quran as well. Related to the sacred months, Allah Almighty says in the Holy Quran: “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.” (Quran, 9:36)
The blessing of
this month in the light of above-mentioned ayah is the fact that if the month
is sacred then the ordinary good deeds or the deeds recommended by Allah
Almighty are committed in this blessed month, then their reward is also to be
greater compared to doing those deeds in other months in normal days.
Therefore, in no way should a Muslim consider leaving a small good deed in this
month, neither must he or she consider undertaking any minor sin as the rewards
and punishments are probable to increase exponentially for the respective deeds.
Fasting in the month of Muharram has greater privilege. Abu Huraira (RA) reported that: The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said, “The best of fasts after the month of Ramadan is in the Month of Allah, which you call Muharram. And the best of prayer after the obligatory prayer is the night prayer” (Muslim). The reward of voluntary fasting is surely to increase substantially when done in the month of Muharram. Therefore, if you are considering voluntary fasting after the month of Ramadan, then the best month for fasting in the month of Muharram and gather as many blessings for the deed as much possible.
The month of Muharram is also known for the Day of Ashura. The Day of Ashura, which is the tenth day of Muharram is a significant factor for the holy month of Muharram. There is a whole narration that tells about the importance of the Day of Ashura and how it is a unique opportunity for a Muslim to earn a greater reward in this day. Hazrat Abbas (RA) narrates related to the Ashura Day: “The Prophet (PBUH) came to Medina and saw the Jews fasting on the Day of Ashura. He said, ‘What is this?’ They said, ‘This is a righteous day, it is the day when Allah saved the Children of Israel from their enemies, so Moosa fasted on this day.’ He said, ‘We have more right to Moosa than you,’ so He fasted on that day and commanded (the Muslims) to fast on that day.” (Bukhari)
If Muslim wishes to achieve expiation from the minor sins of the previous year, then he/ she must consider fasting on the Day of Ashura and be free of minor sins. In a hadith, Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “This fast is a compensation for the (minor) sins of the past year” (Muslim).
Moreover, increasing the provisions for the coming year, a Muslim must consider fasting on the Day of Ashura, which very rightly is the greatest blessing brought forward by the month of Muharram. In another hadith, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “One who generously spends on his family on the Day of Ashura, Allah will increase (his provision) for the whole year.” (Baihaqi)