I like to keep summer goals. This way, my summers are not wasted in fun and games.
There are the typical goals….like:
1-sleeping early 2-waking at Fajr 3-praying tahajjud 4-fasting Mondays and Thursdays… And Many Others…
I have a goal this summer, though, that’s a little less general.
To blog AT LEAST once a week, inshAllah. I thought perhaps Wednesday would be the best to do it as well since it’s my least busy day. It would be another way to keep myself connected to the Quran, inshAllah.
Today I was moved to post about the Lunar Eclipse.
The urge came from witnessing a superstitious and unauthentic practice taking place in my own household after a family member was watching the news on TV about the June 15th, 2011 total lunar eclipse. (when
There are many beliefs and rituals etc. associated with the Lunar (and Solar) Eclipse which have no basis in the Quran and Sunnah.
The only practice which is well-founded is that of a voluntary prayer called Salat-ul-Kusoof.
It is referred to in the following Hadith:
Bukhari :: Book 2 :: Volume 18 :: Hadith 151-152
Narrated Abu Masud & Ibn Umar:
The Prophet (s) said, “The sun and the moon do not eclipse because of the death of someone from the people but they are two signs amongst the signs of Allah. When you see them stand up and pray.”
How do you pray it?
The prayer is described in another Hadith:-
Bukhari :: Book 2 :: Volume 18 :: Hadith 154
Narrated ‘Aisha :
In the life-time of Allah’s Apostle (p.b.u.h) the sun eclipsed, so he led the people in prayer, and >>stood up and performed a long Qiyam, then >>bowed for a long while. He >>stood up again and performed a long Qiyam but this time the period of standing was shorter than the first. He >>bowed again for a long time but shorter than the first one, then he >>prostrated and prolonged the prostration. He >>did the same in the second Raka as he did in the first and >>then finished the prayer; by then the sun (eclipse) had cleared. He delivered the Khutba (sermon) and after praising and glorifying Allah he said, “The sun and the moon are two signs against the signs of Allah; they do not eclipse on the death or life of anyone. So when you see the eclipse, remember Allah and say Takbir, pray and give Sadaqa.” The Prophet then said, “O followers of Muhammad! By Allah! There is none who has more ghaira (self-respect) than Allah as He has forbidden that His slaves, male or female commit adultery (illegal sexual intercourse). O followers of Muhammad! By Allah! If you knew that which I know you would laugh little and weep much.”
( Hadith 172 )
Sulaiman bin Kathir and Sufyan bin Husain narrated from Az-Zuhri that the prayer for the eclipse used to be offered with >>loud recitation.
Why do the moon (and sun) eclipse?
We only know of two reasons…
Firstly, as mentioned before, it’s simply a sign of Allah…
Allah says in the Quran:
“Allah is He, who created the sun, the moon, and the stars — (all) governed by laws under His commandment.” (7:54)
It is also said, though, that these occurrences are meant to instill fear in the hearts of believers:
Bukhari :: Book 2 :: Volume 18 :: Hadith 158
Narrated Abu Bakra:
Allah’s Apostle said: “The sun and the moon are two signs amongst the signs of Allah and they do not eclipse because of the death of someone but Allah frightens His devotees with them.”
It is said that the Prophet (s) had assumed that it was a sign that the Day of Judgment was to happen:-
Bukhari :: Book 2 :: Volume 18 :: Hadith 167
Narrated Abu Musa:
The sun eclipsed and the Prophet got up, being afraid that it might be the Hour (i.e. Day of Judgment). He went to the Mosque and offered the prayer with the longest Qiyam, bowing and prostration that I had ever seen him doing. Then he said, “These signs which Allah sends do not occur because of the life or death of somebody, but Allah makes His worshipers afraid by them. So when you see anything thereof, proceed to remember Allah, invoke Him and ask for His forgiveness.”
A similar situation is actually described in the Quran that is supposed to take place on that day:-
فَإِذَا بَرِقَ ٱلۡبَصَرُ (٧) وَخَسَفَ ٱلۡقَمَرُ (٨) وَجُمِعَ ٱلشَّمۡسُ وَٱلۡقَمَرُ (٩) يَقُولُ ٱلۡإِنسَـٰنُ يَوۡمَٮِٕذٍ أَيۡنَ ٱلۡمَفَرُّ (١٠
“When the sight is dazed, and the moon is buried in darkness, and the sun and moon are joined together: Man will say on that day, ‘Where is the refuge?’” (Surat al-Qiyamah, the Resurrection)
This Eclipse was not the one of the Day of Judgment, but one day it will be.
So don’t take this second chance for granted and seek forgiveness from Allah.