The Significance of Nisfu Sha’ban

The Significance of Nisfu Sha'baanPhoto Credit: iStockPhoto

Alhamdulillah.. Praises and thanks are due to Allah. May His Peace and Blessings be upon Rasulillah, his family members and all his Sahabah.

This article, The Significance of Nisfu Sha’ban, comes in response to two similar questions, which I was asked today, by two different persons, regarding the significance of the mid of Sha’bān (Nisfu Sha’bān).

I seize this opportunity to share what I know regarding the mid of Sha’bān, so I can have reference for myself, and for my beloved readers of GSalam.Net. I’m sure there’re many people out there, who also have the same questions, or are unclear with regards to the subject matter.

Sha’bān is one of the blessed months, indeed. Rasulullah, salla Allahu ‘alaihi wasallam, would fast most of the days of Sha’bān, and would refrain (or advise his Sahabah to refrain) from fasting in the second half of Sha’bān. Find out more in my article, “A Pre-Ramadhan Visit to Rasulillah, s.a.w.

That’s with regard to the month of Sha’bān as a whole.

As for the night of the mid of Sha’bān specifically, It’s narrated by Abu Musa Al-Ash’ari, r.a., and reported by Ibnu Majah that Rasulullah has said:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَيَطَّلِعُ فِي لَيْلَةِ النِّصْفِ مِنْ شَعْبَانَ فَيَغْفِرُ لِجَمِيعِ خَلْقِهِ إِلاَّ لِمُشْرِكٍ أَوْ مُشَاحِنٍ

“Allah looks in the night of the mid of Sha’bān, and forgives all His servants (slaves), except for the one who associates others with Him (‘Mushrik’), or the one with hatred against others.”

This Hadīth, however, is not an invitation for a special celebration or ‘ibadah in the night of the mid of Sha’bān, or fasting on the day of the mid of Sha’bān. Otherwise Rasulullah would have done it, or would have instructed for it accordingly.

An evidence that Rasulullah would have been the first to do it, should there be any ‘call for action’ is how he made use of Lailatul-Qadr, and encouraged the Ummah to hunt for Lailatul-Qadr and the blessings that it brings along. To the extent that he said:

منْ قَامَ لَيْلَةَ القَدْرِ إِيمَاناً وَاحْتِسَاباً، غُفِرَ لَهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنْ ذَنْبِهِ

“Whosoever performs (coincides) Qiyam during the Lailatul-Qadr, out of faith and in the hope of reward [from Allah], his previous sins will be forgiven.”

Remember that Lailatul-Qadr is a night in Ramadhan, just like Nisfu-Sha’bān is a night in Sha’bān.

In other words, the amount of authentic Hadīths (Ahaadīth) said by Rasulillah, salla Allahu ‘alaihi wasallam, regarding Sha’bān is sufficient to indicate to us, that if any extra acts of worship (‘ibadah) were required, Rasulullah would have stated it clearly, done it or instructed the Sahabah to do it.

Other than the above mentioned Hadīth (of Abu Musa), scholars of different eras agree that, there’s no one authentic Hadīth that authorizes special ‘ibadah or celebration in the night of the mid of Sha’bān or fasting on the day of Nisfu Sha’bān.

This article comes to provide answer(s) to our Muslim brother and sisters who are not sure of what we are supposed to do, on this ‘special night and day’. It’s also meant to ensure the authentic teaching of Rasulullah, salla Allahu ‘alaihi wasallam, is conveyed.

Whether or not you agree with what I’ve outlined above, please share with us your views and opinions. Please comment your views and opinion below. At the end of the day, differences in opinions (especially in non-fundamental issues) should not separate the Ummah.

If you find this article useful, please consider sharing it with your loved ones. Don’t let the benefit stop at your desk.

Allah knows best.
Allahu Hafiz 🙂

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