MUSLIM SERMON - THE DISEASE OF LATE NIGHTS
1) The Great favour of Allaah of the days and nights.
2) How nights were spent by the early Muslims compared to those in present times.
3) The problem of late nights during the summer vacation.
4) The harms and evil consequences of late nights.
5) An example of a night in the house of the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam.
6) The warnings of the Salaf against entertainment and late nights.
7) The virtues of the hours preceding dawn.
8) The spread of the devils from among Jinn and mankind at sunset.
9) The sins committed during weddings.
O Muslims! The favours of Allaah upon
His slaves cannot be enumerated. Among these favours is that He has created
sleep, and He has created the night so that we may rest in it. Allaah, the
Bestower of Favours, says that which translates as: “And [We] made your sleep
[a means for] rest, And made the night as clothing.” (An-Naba’: 9-10) And also: “[He is] the cleaver of daybreak and
has made the night for rest and the sun and moon for calculation. That is the
determination of the Exalted in Might, the Knowing.” (Al-An’aam: 96) During the night, people are calm and
their bodies and minds are relaxed, which results in the required rest. Allaah
created this time for people to unwind, calm down and rest in, and this is from
His mercy. Allaah says that which translates as: “And out of His mercy He made for
you the night and day that you may rest therein and [by day] seek from His
bounty and [that] perhaps you will be grateful.” (Al-Qasas: 73).
O Muslims! In the past, the nights were a field of competition and hard work; during them one would only see people praying, crying, supplicating or reciting the Qur’aan. Our Salaf, may Allaah have mercy upon them, used to view the nights as the best means that lead one to Paradise. However, the Muslims of today take their nights as a means of entertainment and frivolity. Satan dispatches his followers and spreads his evil ideas, and this has led to late nights being a source of immorality, corrupt behaviour, and a path that leads to ones destruction, as well as a period in which the evilest of prohibited television programs are broadcast.
Late nights ruin the bodies; they enter upon us as a terrifying intruding stranger and are a shelter for every sinful and sick-hearted person. They are the source of all evil and any objective person will testify to this. They earn the wrath of Allaah and His punishment and cause the hearts to become sick as well as encouraging wrong doing.
All of these evils are a direct result of the Muslim nation feeding in western ideology and its associated lifestyle. The Muslims have fed from the fruits of this bitter tree (i.e., the western ideology) which promotes a lifestyle which is by its nature far away from the religion of Allaah and rebellious against all spiritual morals. It encourages the following of ones lusts and desires, just like as animals do. This is nothing but poison which the disbelieving and evil ideas of secularism have fed us. It is mandatory upon the Muslims from all walks of life, and especially the leaders and those in authority, to protect the younger generation from this destructive volcano of secularism which destroys everything that it comes across.
O Muslims! During vacations and holidays, late nights become a serious problem which is widespread, and most people who practice this habit forego sleep and all other important activities in their lives and immerse themselves in wrongdoing and sinful acts. They seem to forget that the days of summer are temporary, just like a guest, and that these days and nights will quickly come to an end.
Successful are those who ponder upon the heat of summer and the hot water it produces and reflect thereby on the Hereafter and the Hellfire. This is a preventive remembrance which would stop them from spending their nights sinfully; wasting time by indulging in prohibitions; and killing hours whilst partaking in immorality and corruption - which destroys families and the next generation. Glad tidings are due for the slaves who restrain themselves from straying, and spend their time beneficially in matters such as, Qur’aan circles, lectures, courses, developing their mental abilities and permitted wholesome entertainment which is free from any prohibitions.
Staying up until the last hours of the night and resisting sleep when the body is in desperate need of it, or consuming prohibited medication that keeps one awake, results in serious problems such as health diseases, psychological disturbances, bad tempers and loss of enthusiasm; one would thereby become physically weak, lazy and apathetic to the extent that one can no longer shoulder any responsibilities nor fulfil any duties which one has during the day, because staying up late is tiring and burdensome. Thawbaan, may Allaah be pleased with him, narrated that the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam said: “Staying up late is tiring and burdensome.”(Daarimi, Tabaraani and others). A person may resist sleep to stay up for an extra hour and lose as a result many hours if not days.
Slaves of Allaah! Staying up late is a major reason behind many of the moral crimes, community problems, car accidents and instability in national security that currently exists.
O Muslims! Let us look at the household of the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam to see the Prophetic methodology and guidance, so that we can follow in his footsteps and protect ourselves with his Sunnah from the finely decorated evil of Satan and the sweet words of the corrupt. ‘Aa’ishah, may Allaah be pleased with her, said: "The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, never slept before the ‘Ishaa’ prayer and never stayed up after it." (Ibn Maajah) And when she heard ‘Urwah, may Allaah be pleased with him, talking after the ‘Ishaa’ prayer she remarked: "What is this talk after dark? I have never seen the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam sleeping before this prayer or talking after it. He was either praying and gaining (reward) or sleeping and saved (from evil)" (Abdur-Razzaaq). Al-Aswad, may Allaah have mercy upon him, said: "I asked ‘Aa’ishah, how was the (night) prayer of the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam?" She, may Allaah be pleased with her, replied: "He slept for the first part of the night and prayed at the end of it." (Bukhaari & Muslim).
O Muslims! Sleeping in the first part of the night has many benefits. Those who follow the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam in doing this find that their body has been properly rested. Abdullaah Ibn ‘Abbaas, may Allaah be pleased with him, said: "Once I spent the night at the house of my aunt Maymoonah, the wife of the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam. I put my head on a pillow while laying down sideways while the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam and his wife lay down lengthways. The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam slept until midnight, or just before or right after it. Then he woke up and wiped the sleep from his face by rubbing his face with his hands and then he recited the last ten verses from Soorah Aal ‘Imraan. Then he performed a perfect Wudhoo’ and stood up for prayer." (Bukhaari & Muslim). This is how his night was, but where are those who imitate him?
O Muslims! You have two angels accompanying you all your lives and they record all the deeds that you perform. ‘Urwah, may Allaah be pleased with him, said "I was talking once after the ‘Ishaa’ prayer and ‘Aaishah heard me, so she said: 'Why don’t you give your record keepers a rest? The Prophet never slept before this prayer nor did he stay up after it’" (Ibn Hibbaan). Imaam Maalik, may Allaah have mercy upon him, reported that ‘Aa’ishah, may Allaah be pleased with her, used to send some of her family members after ‘Ishaa’ prayer to say to the people: "Why don't you give your record keepers a rest?" Az-Zarqaani, may Allaah have mercy upon him, reported that Abu ‘Abdul Malik, may Allaah have mercy upon him, commented on this by saying: "She meant the one who records evil deeds, and if people refrain from evil then he will rest and not record anything, and this was because of the hatred that she had for the evil that people did."
The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, dispraised staying up late and warned against it as Ibn Mas’ood, may Allaah be pleased with him, said: "The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, used to dispraise and warn against staying up after ‘Ishaa" (Ahmad).
The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam said: “Beware of staying up after people’s movements settle” and in another narration: “Beware of staying up after the night has settled, because you do not know what spreads out on the earth from the creatures of Allaah” (Al-Haakim). Abu Barzah Al-Aslami, may Allaah be pleased with him, said: "The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam used to like to delay the ‘Ishaa’ prayer and he hated to sleep before it or talk after it". Imaam Ibn Hajar, may Allaah have mercy upon him, commented on this by saying: "This is because sleeping before it might make a person pray it after its due time, and staying up late might cause one to miss the Fajr prayer, or make a person miss out on the (optional) night prayer. ‘Umar, may Allaah be pleased with him, used to punish people the people who did this and say: 'You stay up for the first part of the night, then sleep for the last part of it?’". Ibn Hajar, may Allaah have mercy upon him, continued by saying: "Some people may differentiate between the seasons where the nights are long and those whose nights are short, but in order to settle this issue, we must realise that the advice of the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam was general and applicable at all times". Imaam An-Nawawi, may Allaah have mercy upon him, said: "The scholars have agreed that staying up after ‘Ishaa’ is dispraised, unless it is for the purpose of doing something (religiously) beneficial".
The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam did stay up late on some occasions in order to fulfil some needs or accomplish some tasks for the benefit of the Muslims, as ‘Umar, may Allaah be pleased with him, said: "The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam and I used to stay up late at night at the house of Abu Bakr, may Allaah be pleased with him, discussing the affairs of the Muslims." (Ahmad & Tirmidhi). Ibn Mas’ood, may Allaah be pleased with him, narrated that the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam“Staying up late is permitted for one of two categories of people; either those travelling, or those praying.” (Ahmad). ‘Aa’ishah, may Allaah be pleased with her, narrated that the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam said: “Staying up late is for one of three categories of people; those travelling, those praying the night prayers, or those on their wedding night.” (Abu Ya’laa). Imaam Bukhaari, may Allaah have mercy upon him, gave the title of one of the chapters on his famous book as: "Staying up late with the wife, the guest, for learning or being benevolent". said:
Therefore, the summary of the ruling regarding staying up late is that staying up after the ‘Ishaa’ prayer is dispraised unless it is due to necessity or for a religiously beneficial purpose. If it is the case that staying up late results in abandoning or missing out on an obligatory act of worship then it becomes prohibited, even if the reason for staying up was to perform a religiously beneficial deed or act in obedience to Allaah; anything that leads one to commit a prohibition is itself prohibited. As a consequence, we know that staying up late doing religiously beneficial acts is praised only if none of the above mentioned prohibitions take place.
O Muslims! Many people slight the prohibited type of staying up late, which leads many of them to miss their Fajr prayer, and this has become such a chronic problem that those who attend this prayer in congregation are very few in number. This phenomenon has became very natural, so much so that people do not feel any resentment towards it, despite the fact that the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam said: “The most burdensome prayers for a hypocrite are ‘Ishaa’ and Fajr, and if only they (i.e., the hypocrites) knew what virtues they have, then they would have attended them, even if they would have had to crawl to the mosque.” (Bukhaari & Muslim). Ibn Mas’ood, may Allaah be pleased with him, said: "Only a known hypocrite would miss out on these two prayers." (Muslim).
Slaves of Allaah! Fear Allaah and do not practice such a dispraised deed which has very evil consequences. If you have forgotten or become absent minded, then remember that Allaah says that which translates as: “…And if Satan should cause you to forget, then do not remain after the reminder with the wrongdoing people.” (Al-An’aam: 68). Beware that the nights of your life will pass you by whilst you are heedless and becoming more and more astray. Know that during every second of your life, your every word, thought and deed are recorded and exposed to Allaah; nothing can be concealed from Him. Just ponder over the saying of Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam: “Any People who sit in a gathering during which they do not mention the name of Allaah, it will be as if they ate from a dead donkey, and they will bitterly regret it.” (Abu Daawood) The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, also said: “Any People who sit in a gathering during which they do not mention the name of Allaah nor exalt the mention of His Prophet will regret it, then it is up to Allaah to punish them for it or forgive them.” (Ahmad).
O Muslims! The time that precedes dawn
is the time for supplicating and seeking forgiveness and repentance, as the
Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam said: “Our Lord
descends (in a way which befits His Majesty) every night to the heavens when
there is only one third of the night remaining and says: Who is supplicating to
me so that I can respond to him? Who is asking Me for something so that I can
grant him that which he is asking for? Who is seeking My forgiveness so that I
can forgive him” (Bukhaari & Muslim) and the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa
sallam, also said:
“The closest Allaah is to His slave is during
the last part of the night, so if you can be amongst those who mention Allaahs
name during this time, then do so.” (Tirmidhi).
O Muslims! Is it befitting to a Muslim
to spend these honourable and virtuous times with music and lusts?
O fathers and guardians! You are commanded to prevent your children from going out whenever darkness falls, as the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Prevent your children from going outside after dark, because this is the time during which Satan emerges.” (Al-Haakim) The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, also said: “When it is getting dark then prevent your children from going outside, because the devils spread out at that time. After this time, you may set them (i.e., your children) loose.” (Bukhaari & Muslim) In addition to this, the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, also said: “Do not allow your children to go outside from sunset until it becomes dark, because devils are sent from the time the sun sets until darkness falls.” in another narration: “Because Jinns spread out and possess people.”
O Muslims! If it is a must that children are prevented from going outside due to devils being widespread during this time, then we must also know that the devils from amongst mankind also spread themselves out throughout the night, aiming to attract and corrupt our youth, and the temptations are countless, which necessitates that we be alert and cautious, for only he who is cautious will survive. Protect your children from becoming misguided and lost due to the fact that they are young and easily tempted inexperienced in life; be trustworthy guardians, faithful, wise and alert. Do not be negligent because that this is harmful and yields bitter results. Allaah says that which translates as: “Indeed this is a reminder, so whoever wills may take to his Lord a way.” (Al-Muzzammil: 19).
O Muslims! Something which breaks ones
heart due to sorrow and pain is that fact that many people have transgressed the
boundaries of what is lawful and unlawful during weddings. They are not
satisfied by what Allaah has legislated and made permissible, such as announcing
the wedding in order to differentiate between it and an illicit relationship, or
allowing women only to beat tambourines and sing songs which are not immoral.
They have transgressed these boundaries to the extent that people stay up all
night uselessly during wedding parties; they hire male and female singers to
sing lustful songs and use musical instruments; they spend excessively; they
harm others by loud music and unnecessary noise; they compete with each other in
an evil manner by paying very high prices for wedding dresses; the women appear
uncovered or covered but with tight see-through dresses, which leaves the body
almost nude; the dancers in such gatherings behave like prostitutes and
disbelievers; and there is free mixing between men and women; All these are
disgraceful practices which has transferred to the Muslim masses from the west
by blind imitation.
Slaves of Allaah! Fear Allaah and refrain from what you were prohibited to do. Adhere to that which your Salaf did; make up for what has passed by weeping over your sins which you have repented for and Allaah will change your sins into rewards and forgive you.
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