Dhu al-Hajjah (Arabic: ذُو ٱلْحِجَّة, Ḏū al-Ḥijjah, also spelled Zu al-Hijjah, is the twelfth and final month in the Islamic calendar. It is a very sacred month in the Islamic calendar, one in which the Ḥajj (Pilgrimage) takes place as well as the Festival of the Sacrifice.
“Dhu al-Hajjah” literally means “Possessor of the Pilgrimage” or “The Month of the Pilgrimage”. During this month Muslim pilgrims from all around the world congregate at Mecca to visit the Kaaba. The Hajj is performed on the eighth, ninth and the tenth of this month. Day of Arafah takes place on the ninth of the month. Eid al-Adha, the “Festival of the Sacrifice”, begins on the tenth day and ends on sunset of the 13th.
There are no days in the year more beloved to Allah swt than the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah and the last ten nights of Ramadan, as they combine acts of worship in a way unlike any other time. The Prophet Pbuh said, “There is no deed that is better in the sight of Allah or more greatly rewarded than a good deed done in the (first) ten days of Al-Adha”. It was asked, “Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah?” The Prophet Pbuh replied, “Not even Jihad for the sake of Allah, unless a man goes out himself for Jihad taking his wealth with him and does not come back with anything.” [Al Bukhari]
Muhammad (SM) used to fast the first nine days of this month, owing to their perceived virtue:
حدثنا مسدد حدثنا أبو عوانة عن الحر بن الصباح عن هنيدة بن خالد عن امرأته عن بعض أزواج النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قالت كان رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يصوم تسع ذي الحجة ويوم عاشوراء وثلاثة أيام من كل شهر
One of the wives[vague] of Muhammad said: “Allah’s Messenger used to fast the [first] nine days of Dhul-Hijjah, the day of ‘Ashurah, and three days of each month.” (Reported by Abu Dawud)
There are certain times of year in which even small acts of worship are rewarded in abundance. These periods of the year are in reality gifts from Allah swt that he has given to us. And from those blessed times in which worship is abundantly and hugely rewarded are the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah. This is the twelfth month of the Islamic calendar during which the Muslims perform Hajj. There are no other days which are rewarded like these ten days. Sadly many Muslims do not realise the greatness and superiority and virtues of these ten days, and treat these days like any other day.
Maximizing Your Rewards
The first ten days of Dhul Hijjah are almost upon us and we don’t want to miss out on a single blessing. Even if you are not going on Hajj, there’s plenty you can do to make the most of Dhul Hijjah at home.
- Perform Dhikr & Takbeer
- Standing In Night Prayer
- Fasting all 9 days especially Day Of Arafah
- Make Sincere Repentance
- Perform The Hajj Pilgrimage
- Give A Prophetic Qurbani
- Return to Book of Allah (Quran)
- Give Sadaqah & Charity