This sermon has been narrated by al-Sadooq in his book, “Al Amali” relying on the authority of Imam al-Rida, who quotes his forefathers, peace be upon them, until Imam ‘Ali, peace be upon him, who in turn quotes Prophet Muhammad saying: 

“O people! A month has approached you laden with blessing, mercy and forgiveness; it is a month which Almighty Allah regards as the best of all months. Its days, in the sight of Almighty Allah, are the best of days, its nights are the best of nights, its hours are the best of hours. It is a month in which you are invited to be the guests of Almighty Allah and you are regarded during it as worthy of enjoying Almighty Allah’s generosity. Your breathing in it is regarded as praising Almighty Allah and your sleep as adoration, and your voluntary acts of worship are accepted, and your pleas are answered.
Therefore, ask Almighty Allah your Lord, in sincere intentions and pure hearts to enable you to fast during it and to recite His Book, for only a wretch is the one who is deprived of Almighty Allah’s forgiveness during this great month. And let your hunger and thirst during it remind you of the hunger and thirst of the day of resurrection.

Give alms to the poor and indigent ones among you; surround your elderly with respect, and be kind to your youngsters. Visit your kin and safeguard your tongues and do not look at what Allah has decreed as prohibitive for you to look at, and do not listen to anything your ears are forbidden from hearing. Be kind to the orphans of others, so that your own orphans will equally receive kindness. Repent your sins to Almighty Allah and raise your hands to Him in supplication during the times of your prayers, for they are the best times during which Almighty Allah looks with mercy to His servants and answers their pleas when they plead Him.

This is a place in the Prophet’s Mosque (Masjid Al Nabawi) called “Rawdhatul Jannah” which means a garden of Paradise. It’s between the Prophet’s minbar (prayer pulpit) from where he used to give the kutbah (sermon) and his house. His house is now included in the larger part of the current Mosque complex.

O people! Your souls are pawned by your deeds; therefore, release them by seeking Almighty Allah’s forgiveness. Your backs are over-burdened by the weight of your sins; therefore, lighten their burden by prolonging your prostration. Be informed that the Exalted and Almighty Allah has sworn by His Dignity not to torture those who say their prayers and prostrate to Him, and not to terrify them by the sight of the fire when people are resurrected for judgment.

O people! Whoever among you breaks the fast of a believer during this month will receive a reward equal to one who set a slave free, and he will receive forgiveness for all his past sins.”

The people then said, “O Messenger of Allah! Not all of us can do that!” He said, “Shun the fire of hell even by a date! Shun the fire of hell even by a drink of water!”

“O People! Whoever among you improves his conduct during this month will have a safe passage on the right path when many feet will slip away, and whoever among you decreases the burdens on his servant, will be rewarded by Almighty Allah decreasing his reckoning.

Whoever among you abstains from harming others will be spared the Wrath of Almighty Allah when he meets Him. Whoever among you affords generosity to an orphan will be rewarded by Almighty Allah being generous to him on the day of judgment.

Whoever among you improves his ties with his kin will be rewarded by Almighty Allah including him in His mercy, and whoever among you severs his ties with his kin, Almighty Allah will withhold His mercy from him when he meets Him.

Whoever among you offers voluntary prayers, Allah will decree a clearance for him from the torture of the Fire. Whoever among you performs an obligation will receive the reward of one who has performed seventy obligations in other months.

Whoever among you increase the sending of blessings unto me, Almighty Allah will make the balance of his good deeds heavy when balances will be light.

Whoever among you recites one verse of the Holy Qur’an will receive the blessing of one who recited the entire Qur’an in another month.

O people! The gates of heaven in this month are kept open; so, pray Almighty, your Lord not to close them against you, and the gates of the fire kept closed; so, pray Almighty Allah your Lord not to open them for you; and the devils are kept chained; therefore, pray Almighty Allah your Lord not to unleash them against you.”

Extract of the Abu Hamzeh al-Thumali prayer, read by Sayed Hassan Nasrallah

O’ my Lord! This is the posture of the one who sought refuge through You, and (tried to) get closer to Your generosity, and became accustomed to Your forbearance and favors.

And You are the most Benevolent, whose forgiveness is never strained, neither are Your bounties ever decreasing, nor is Your mercy ever lacking. And we have known with certainty about Your ancient pardon, your great bountifulness and your vast mercy.

Would You, O’ my God, ever disappoint our (good) thoughts (about you) or let down our hopes? No never, O’ Most Generous! For it is not what we expect of You, nor is it what we aspire for.

O’ God, we have a greater and ever lasting hope in You, We have great hope in You, and place great desire in You. (Woe to us), We disobeyed You! We disobeyed You, and now we hope that You’ll conceal our (secret) sins. And we prayed to You and we hope You’ll answer our prayers. So fulfill our aspiration, O’ Master, for (without Your mercy), we fully realize (the punishment) we deserve as a result of our (worthless or bad) deeds.

But Your awareness of our conduct and our knowledge that You indeed won’t send us away from You, has motivated us to seek You, even though we are not worthy of Your mercy. But You are worthy of bestowing Your generosity on us and on all the sinners due to Your vast compassion, so, award us with what You are worthy of (and not with what we are worthy of), and grant us for we are in need of Your bounty. O’ Most Forgiving!

With Your light we were guided, and with Your bounties we became richer, and Your favors are poured on us every morning and evening. Our sins are before You. We ask You, O’ Master, for forgiveness, and we hereby repent.

You show us love with Your gifts but we reward You by our sins. Your bounty to us is ever descending, but our mischief to You is (ever) ascending. Every now and then, Your honored angel brings You the news of our ugly deeds, but that does not prevent You from continuing to surround us with Your grace, and kindly provide us with Your holy features. 

So, I glorify and praise You for the extent of Your patience, greatness and generosity as a Beginner (of creation) and eventual Claimer of this world. Holiest are Your names, and glorified is Your praise, and honored are Your favors and deeds.

O’ My Lord! You are more vast in bountifulness and greater in patience than to judge me according to my deeds or mistakes. (I beg for) your forgiveness! Your forgiveness! Your forgiveness! My Master! My Master! My Master!

And who am I, my Lord, and what am I worth? Award me Your benevolence, O’ Master! And render me Your pardon, and cover me with the protection of my secrets, and pardon me from Your chastisement with Your benevolent face.

O’ Master! I am the young one whom You raised, I am the ignorant whom You educated, I am the misled whom You guided, I am the humiliated one whom You elevated, I am the frightened one whom You safeguarded, the hungry one whom You fed, the thirsty whose thirst You quenched, the naked whom You dressed, the poor whom You made wealthy, the weak whom You strengthened, the insignificant whom You honored, the sick whom You cured, the beggar whom You provided charity to, the sinner whose secret You have protected, the wrong doer whom You aided. I am the little (creature) You made more significant, and the oppressed whom You made victorious. I am the escapee whom You gave refuge to. I am the one, O’ God, who did not revere You (when I committed sins) in my seclusion, nor observed Your (commands) in public. I am the possessor of the great craftiness (bad intentions), I am the one who dared His Master, I am the one who disobeyed the Commander of the skies. I am the one who bribed my way to the way of disobeying of the Magnificent (God). I am the one who, when I was forewarned about (sins), I hastily raced to commit them. I am the one to whom You gave a delay (to repent) but I did not heed, and You veiled my secret (sins) but I wasn’t ashamed (to keep being a sinner), and I disobeyed You until I belligerently (transgressed all bounds), and then (at last) You disregarded me but I did not care.

But with Your benevolence, You postponed my punishment, and with Your veil, You safeguarded my (secret) sins, as if You had overlooked me, and You shielded me from the punishment called upon me by my sins, to the extent that it appeared as if You were shy in front of me. (All our sins, God covers them with His Veil, His Forgiveness, His Mercy, His Blessings…)

O’ my Lord! When I disobeyed You, it wasn’t because I rejected Your divinity, nor because I belittled Your commands, nor was I daringly challenging Your punishment, nor was unheeding Your forewarning (willingly). The truth is that I was tempted by a sin and my (evil) self misled me, and my sinful desires won over me, and my misery helped me to it, and Your protective veil over my sins lured me, for I have disobeyed You and opposed You with my own will.

And now, from Your retribution, who would rescue me? And from the hands of Your angels of punishment tomorrow (in the hereafter), who would redeem me? And to whose rope will I hold on to if You cut off Your rope from me? So what a pity! What a pity for (all the sinful deeds) Your book has recorded on me. Indeed, if it was not for my anticipation of Your generosity and vast mercifulness as well as Your ordering me not to lose hope (in Your infinite forgiveness), I would have despaired whenever I remembered it (my sin).

O’ the Best a worshiper has ever prayed to, and the Foremost anyone has ever wished benefits from! My God, forgive us by the sanctity of Your Book, of Your Prophet, of the Family of Your Prophet, of your blessed month (of Ramadan) and of your blessed night (of Destiny). My God, grant our wishes as well as those of believers, Muslim men and women, and of all the oppressed, the tortured, the afflicted, give them what they need for this world and for the other, by Your vast Mercy, O’ the most Merciful of the Merciful.

May God forgive me and forgive you my brothers and sisters, and as I said last year, I hope you will not forget me, the humble servant, for I need your invocations, so I ask you to remember me in your invocations if God wills, and I will not forget you in my invocations on this blessed night. 

“Any amount counts, because a little money here and there, it’s like drops of water that can become rivers, seas or oceans…” Hassan Nasrallah 

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