Namaz-e-Shab has more importance than others desirable prayers. It has more importance than supererogatory prayers of five times. It has 11 Rakats and its timing is from midnight to dawn. There are many Ayats about to get up early before the sun rising and perform this prayer and beg pardon of Allah. The explanation is this that one who has reached to the spiritual stage, is due to get up early in the morning.
(Allah has been granted whatever auspiciousness is because of Namaz-e-Shab and recitation of supplication) Allah says in Sura Bani Israel Ayat no 79, that
وَمِنَ اللَّيْلِ فَتَهَجَّدْ بِهِ نَافِلَةً لَّكَ عَسَى أَن يَبْعَثَكَ رَبُّكَ مَقَامًا مَّحْمُودًا
“And during the part of a night, pray Tahajjud (Namaz-e-Shab) beyond what is incumbent on you; may be your Lord will raise you to a position of great glory.”
(Surah Bani Isreal 17:79)
Certainly Namaz-e-Shab was obligatory on Paigambar-e-Islam (s.a.w.s.) and is also desirable for the followers of Hazrat (s.a.w.s.). Maqam-e-Mehmood means lofty station where the Holy Prophet’s Ascension took him, and people appreciates of it. Here Maqam-e-Mahmood for The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.s.) means it is a greatest intercession of Hazrat (s.a.w.s.).
Many facilities have been given to the followers of Muhammadi regarding Namaz-e-Shab, and if a man does not pray from midnight to morning, he will not be punished but certainly this would be deprivation for him that cannot be recompensed. He will be disappointed to reach to the greater stages that are fixed for Shias of Alae Muhammad.
Emphasize on Namaz-e-Shab
The hadith of Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) is available in ‘Baladul Amin’ written by Khafahami
“He is not from our Shia who is not performing Namaze Shab. And Imam Muhammad Baqar (a.s.) says that” Those who believe in Allah and the hereafter, he should not pass the whole night without performing Namaz-e-Shab. And our Imam-e-Zamana (a.s.) has given three emphasizes while writing a letter to Abu Babiyah (1) Pray Namaz-e-Shab as it is necessary (2) Do pray Namaz-e-Shab (3) Pray Namaz-e-Shab without fail.
One who awakes at the time of day-break
As Allah has been emphasized for Namaz-e-Shab and to be wakeful early in the morning in the Holy Quran. For example He says in Sura Sajdah Ayat no 16-17 that,
تَتَجَافَى جُنُوبُهُمْ عَنِ الْمَضَاجِعِ يَدْعُونَ رَبَّهُمْ خَوْفًا وَطَمَعًا وَمِمَّا رَزَقْنَاهُمْ يُنفِقُونَ
“Their sides draw away from (their) beds) they call upon their Lord in fear and in hope and they spend (benevolently) out of what We have given them.”
(Surah Sajadah 32:16)
فَلَا تَعْلَمُ نَفْسٌ مَّا أُخْفِيَ لَهُم مِّن قُرَّةِ أَعْيُنٍ جَزَاء بِمَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ
“So no soul knows what is hidden for them of that which will refresh the eyes, a reward for what they did.”
(Surah Sajadah 32:17)
Allah says in Sura Zumar Ayat no. 9
أَمَّنْ هُوَ قَانِتٌ آنَاء اللَّيْلِ سَاجِدًا وَقَائِمًا يَحْذَرُ الْآخِرَةَ وَيَرْجُو رَحْمَةَ رَبِّهِ قُلْ هَلْ يَسْتَوِي الَّذِينَ يَعْلَمُونَ وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ إِنَّمَا يَتَذَكَّرُ أُوْلُوا الْأَلْبَابِ
“What! He who is obedient during hours of the night, prostrating himself and standing, takes care of the hereafter and hopes for the mercy of his Lord! Say: Are those who know and those who do not know alike? Only the mean of understanding are mindful.”
(Surah Zumar 39:9)
We come to know nicely that to pray Namaz-e-Shab and beg pardon of Allah is the sign of good knowledge, recognition and wisdom and to avoid doing is ignorance and foolishness.
Allah says in Sura Zariyat, Ayat from 15 – 19 that
وَفِي أَمْوَالِهِمْ حَقٌّ لِّلسَّائِلِ وَالْمَحْرُومِ إِنَّ الْمُتَّقِينَ فِي جَنَّاتٍ وَعُيُونٍ
“Surely those who guard (against evil) shall be in gardens and fountains. Taking what their Lord gives them, surely they were before that the doers of good.
(Surah Zariyat 51:15-19)
They used to sleep but little in the night. And in the morning they asked forgiveness. And in their property was a portion due to him who begs and to him who is denied (good).”
26 Peculiarities of Namaz-e-Shab
The Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.s.) said that Namaz-e-Shab is (1) Allah’s happiness (2) is the cause of friendship with angels (3) is the Holy Prophet’s practice (4) luminosity of the knowledge of Allah (5) firm foundation of the faith (6) comforting for the bodies. (7) it is the cause of disgust from Shaitan. (8) It is the mediation of victory on enemies. (9) It is the cause of prayer’s acceptance. (10) It is worthy acceptable of deeds (11) It is the reason for increase in sustenance. (12) It is the intercession at the time of death (that angel of death would seize the soul with ease) (13) It is the light of grave. (14) It is the carpet of the grave. (15) It will answer Munkar-Nakir when they cross questioning the dead in the grave (16) It is the companion of her namazi in the grave (17) It looks after her/him till the dooms day and when the resurrection day will appear (18) then it is the shade of her namazi for protection (19) It is the crown of his head (20) It is the garment of her namazi. (21) It is the light (22) It is the curtain between him and the fire of hell. (23) It is the proof in the presence of Allah. (24) It is the cause of good deeds to be heavier (25) It is the conveyance of to pass the narrow bridge in the hereafter. (26) It is the key of the door of the heaven.
Twenty-six peculiarities have been mentioned in this Hadith. The most important from these, is that Namaz-e-Shab is the strong foundation of mystic knowledge and the faith. One should not be neglect to get up early and to pray Namaz-e-Shab, contrary it should be always perform regularly so that God willing one should achieved high reward.
Details of Namaz-e-Shab
Perform 2 – 2 rakats Namaz four times (8 Rakats) recite any suras in these 8 rakats. Then perform 2 rakats Shafa and after finish the prayer perform 1 rakat namaz-e-Vitr. If it is possible recite 70 or 100 times Astagfar or recite Al-Afwa 300 times. If invoke blessings for forty momins for their absolution in Qunut is better. Many supplications have been instructed by Ahlay-Bait (a.s.) in this prayer. Especially dua no. 32 of Sahifa-e-Kamela and supplications of Beharul-Anwaar vol. 18 should recite in Qunut is very much better. Allah may give us good guidance.
Stages of faith
Imam Ali Reza (a.s.) has stated in the chapter of hypocrisy and faith of the book Usul al-Kafi. “Faith is one stage high from Islam. Fear of God is one stage high than faith and belief is one stage high than faith and belief is one stage high than fear of God. Nothing is distributed among the believers less from belief. Due to belief many things are available. A writer of Usul al-Kafi asked Imam Ali Reza (a.s.). “What is belief?” Imam (a.s.) said belief means trust in God. Bow down the head for sake of Allah, to be happy on Allah’s will and entrust the result of our deeds to Allah. Allamah Majlisi (r.a.) has been copied out the religious dogmas of this Hadith from other scholars “Knowledge of God and worship are two precious gems that all religious books, all traditions of scholars and guidance’s of sermons that what ever you read or listen are all for these two only. ON the contrary arrival of the Prophets and revelation of the Holy books are for them only. On the other hand what ever is in between the sky and the earth have been created to obtain effectiveness from them.
Allah says in Sura Talaq, Ayat no. 12 that:
وَمَرْيَمَ ابْنَتَ عِمْرَانَ الَّتِي أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهِ مِن رُّوحِنَا وَصَدَّقَتْ بِكَلِمَاتِ رَبِّهَا وَكُتُبِهِ وَكَانَتْ مِنَ الْقَانِتِينَ
“Allah is He who created seven heavens and of the earth the like of them, the decree continues to descend among them, that your may know that Allah has power over all things and that Allah indeed encompasses all things in (His) Knowledge.”
(Surah Talaq 51:65-12)
And to know excellency of worship this ayat 56 of Sura Zariyat is sufficient
وَمَا خَلَقْتُ الْجِنَّ وَالْإِنسَ إِلَّا لِيَعْبُدُونِ
“And I have not created the Jinn and the men except that they should serve Me.”
(Surah Zariyat 51:15-56)
Knowledge or recognition and worship both are together Both the necessary for each other. If recognition is factual than worship will also necessary and if real worship is there then recognition will also with it. Recognition and worship are the cause and causer for each other. Recognition becomes the cause of worship and worship becomes the cause of recognition. For example when worship is the cause of recognition then recognition is called the causer in technical term. Causer means the other thing would be the cause of it. The standard of recognition of Allah would be as much as more, worship also would be of the same measure. If recognition would increase then there will be increment in worship also. In the same way if worship would increase, recognition would also increase.
It is clear that recognition or worship means to know Allah and have faith on His angels, as they become the support of Allah. Allah’s book means to keep faith on they Holy Quran and the Prophets, specially the last Prophet (s.a.w.s.) and his Progeny (a.s.).
Allah says in Sura Baqrah in Ayat 285,
آمَنَ الرَّسُولُ بِمَا أُنزِلَ إِلَيْهِ مِن رَّبِّهِ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ كُلٌّ آمَنَ بِاللّهِ وَمَلآئِكَتِهِ وَكُتُبِهِ وَرُسُلِهِ لاَ نُفَرِّقُ بَيْنَ أَحَدٍ مِّن رُّسُلِهِ وَقَالُواْ سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا غُفْرَانَكَ رَبَّنَا وَإِلَيْكَ الْمَصِيرُ
“The apostle believes in what has been revealed to him from his Lord, and (so do) the believers, they all believe in Allah and His angels and His books and His apostles.”
(Surah Baqarah 2:285)
Our Holy Quran says in Sura Nisa in Ayat no. 136,
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ آمِنُواْ بِاللّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ وَالْكِتَابِ الَّذِي نَزَّلَ عَلَى رَسُولِهِ وَالْكِتَابِ الَّذِيَ أَنزَلَ مِن قَبْلُ وَمَن يَكْفُرْ بِاللّهِ وَمَلاَئِكَتِهِ وَكُتُبِهِ وَرُسُلِهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ فَقَدْ ضَلَّ ضَلاَلاً بَعِيدًا
“O you who believe! Believe in Allah and His Apostle and the Book which He has revealed to His Apostle and the Book which He revealed before, and who ever disbelieves in Allah and His angels and His apostles and the last day, he indeed strays off into a remote error.”
(Surah Nisa 4:136)
Knowledge is the fountained head of belief. Belief is the verification of knowledge that would be justifiable and would be according to the fact. And first imagination is necessary verification and imagination and verification both is knowledge.
And infidelity is opposed to belief, means to hide the truth, do not believe in truth and the fountainhead of infidelity is an imperfect knowledge or fooly.
According to the religious law that belief is the name of verification of five things (1) Allah, (2) Angels, (3) Holy Books (4) Apostle and (5) the last day of resurrection.
Therefore it is obligatory to obtain knowledge and belief. Belief in Masoom Imams (a.s.) and The Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.s.) is included in the list of faith. The necessary result to bring faith on Prophet (s.a.w.s.) is that Nabi appoints any executor, faith should be bring on him. In this way justification of Allah or to know Allah as justice, recognition of Allah, and recognition of attribute of Allah come as under.
The famous Hadith of The Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.s.) is,
‘It is obligatory on male and female to be the students. Here obligatory knowledge means faith and recognition. Certainly every one try to obtain faith and knowledge according to his ability.”
Our Holy Quran says in Sura Baqarah in Ayat No. 286 that
لاَ يُكَلِّفُ اللّهُ نَفْسًا إِلاَّ وُسْعَهَا
“Allah does not impose upon any soul a duty but to the extent of its ability.”
(Surah Baqarah 2:286)
That is why there are so many stages of faith and knowledge. Faith can be strong and as well as weak. It can be less and more. Many traditions of this topic have been arrived that there are many stages in this connection. Faith is according to the quantity of knowledge and which causes the health of heart and life. Faith is like a light and because of this light the curtain removes between Allah and His believer.
Our Holy Quran says in Sura Baqarah Ayat no. 257
اللّهُ وَلِيُّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ يُخْرِجُهُم مِّنَ الظُّلُمَاتِ إِلَى النُّوُر
“Allah is the guardian of those who believe. He brings them out of the darkness into the light.”
(Surah Baqarah 2:257)
In this way Allah says in Sura An’am in Ayat no. 123
أَوَ مَن كَانَ مَيْتًا فَأَحْيَيْنَاهُ وَجَعَلْنَا لَهُ نُورًا يَمْشِي بِهِ فِي النَّاسِ كَمَن مَّثَلُهُ فِي الظُّلُمَاتِ لَيْسَ بِخَارِجٍ مِّنْهَا كَذَلِكَ زُيِّنَ لِلْكَافِرِينَ مَا كَانُواْ يَعْمَلُونَ
“Is he who was dead then We raised him to life and mad for him a light by which he walks among the people, like him whose likeness is that of one in utter darkness when he cannot come forth”?
(Surah An’am 6:123)
And Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) says that knowledge does not obtain from reading only but it is a light that Allah gives him in the heart of whom He wants to guide him certainly when Allah wants to guide and grants knowledge then a man learns and increases his knowledge.
Our Holy Quran states in Sura Anfal Ayat no. 2
وَإِذَا تُلِيَتْ عَلَيْهِمْ آيَاتُهُ زَادَتْهُمْ إِيمَانًا َ
“His communications are recited to them they increase them in faith.”
(Surah Anfal 8:2)
That is why it is commanded in Sura Taha in Ayat no. 114:
وَقُل رَّبِّ زِدْنِي عِلْمًا
“O my Lord! Increase me in knowledge.”
(Surah Taha 20:114)
As much as the curtain removes, the light of the faith increases. The faith becomes strong and powerful, up to that the heart is illuminating. Hence he gets inner light in his heart. He can understand all the facts with an open mind. An invisible affection and different materialistic and its facts come to light on him and he sees all the things according to tis facts. The light of his heart and spaciousness of heart gives all right details as Prophets showed before. Some particulars with details prove right and then desires rise up in his heart to act on Allah’s commands and he gets proficiency of good virtues because of knowledge of God.
Allah says in Surah Tahrim Ayat no. 8 and Surah Nur Ayat no. 35:???
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا تُوبُوا إِلَى اللَّهِ تَوْبَةً نَّصُوحًا عَسَى رَبُّكُمْ أَن يُكَفِّرَ عَنكُمْ سَيِّئَاتِكُمْ وَيُدْخِلَكُمْ جَنَّاتٍ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ يَوْمَ لَا يُخْزِي اللَّهُ النَّبِيَّ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَعَهُ نُورُهُمْ يَسْعَى بَيْنَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَبِأَيْمَانِهِمْ يَقُولُونَ رَبَّنَا أَتْمِمْ لَنَا نُورَنَا وَاغْفِرْ لَنَا إِنَّكَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ اللَّهُ نُورُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ مَثَلُ نُورِهِ كَمِشْكَاةٍ فِيهَا مِصْبَاحٌ الْمِصْبَاحُ فِي زُجَاجَةٍ الزُّجَاجَةُ كَأَنَّهَا كَوْكَبٌ دُرِّيٌّ يُوقَدُ مِن شَجَرَةٍ مُّبَارَكَةٍ زَيْتُونِةٍ لَّا شَرْقِيَّةٍ وَلَا غَرْبِيَّةٍ يَكَادُ زَيْتُهَا يُضِيءُ وَلَوْ لَمْ تَمْسَسْهُ نَارٌ نُّورٌ عَلَى نُورٍ يَهْدِي اللَّهُ لِنُورِهِ مَن يَشَاء وَيَضْرِبُ اللَّهُ الْأَمْثَالَ لِلنَّاسِ وَاللَّهُ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمٌ
“Their light Shall run on before them and on their right hands,” light upon light.”
(Surah Tarim 66:8, Surah Nur 24:35)
The light of worship would be increase the light of knowledge of Allah and the light of knowledge would increase in the light of worship. (Apparently the proceeding light is that light of faith and the light of right side is the light of good acts.) The first stage of the faith is in the form of verification in which doubt is mixed up. There are so many stages in it. It is possible that faith is mixed up with hypocrisy.
Our Holy Quran says in Surah Yusuf Ayat no. 6 “And most of them do not believe in Allah without associating others (with Him).
This stage of faith is not called faith contrary it is called Islam.
Surah Hujarat Ayat 14 says:
قَالَتِ الْأَعْرَابُ آمَنَّا قُل لَّمْ تُؤْمِنُوا وَلَكِن قُولُوا أَسْلَمْنَا وَلَمَّا يَدْخُلِ الْإِيمَانُ فِي قُلُوبِكُمْ
“The dwellers of the desert say, We believe. Say, You don’t believe but say, we submit, and faith has not yet entered into your hearts.”
(Surah Hujarat 49:14)
Surah Hujarat says in Ayat 15:
إِنَّمَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا بِاللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ ثُمَّ لَمْ يَرْتَابُوا
“The believers are only those who believe in Allah and His Apostles then they doubt not”
(Surah Hujarat 49:15)
One more ayat in Surah Anfal Ayat no. 2 says:
إِنَّمَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ الَّذِينَ إِذَا ذُكِرَ اللّهُ وَجِلَتْ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَإِذَا تُلِيَتْ عَلَيْهِمْ آيَاتُهُ زَادَتْهُمْ إِيمَانًا وَعَلَى رَبِّهِمْ يَتَوَكَّلُونَ
“Those only are believers whose hearts become full of fear when Allah is mentioned and when His communications are recited to them they increase them in faith and in their Lord do they trust.”
(Surah Anfal 8:2)
And another ayat of Surah Maidah Ayat no. 54 says:
وَيُحِبُّونَهُ أَذِلَّةٍ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَعِزَّةٍ عَلَى الْكَافِرِينَ يُجَاهِدُونَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ وَلاَ يَخَافُونَ لَوْمَةَ لآئِمٍ ذَلِكَ فَضْلُ اللّهِ يُؤْتِيهِ مَن يَشَاء
“He shall love them and they shall love Him, lowly before the believers, mighty against the unbelievers, they shall strive hard in Allah’s way and shall not fear the censure of any censurer, this is Allah’s grace. He gives it to whom He pleases.”
(Surah Maidah 5:54)
This high stage of the faith is called certainty faith.
Surah Baqarah Ayat no. 4 indicates that:
وَبِالآخِرَةِ هُمْ يُوقِنُونَ
“And they are sure of the hereafter.”
(Surah Baqarah 2:4)
The Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.s.) has stated in Usul al-Kafi,
“The real virtue is that you keep up worship just as you see. Him in front of you.”
This is the stage of certainty of faith. Our Holy Quran points out these three kinds of stages in one ayat “Surah Maidah Ayat no. 93 indicates.
لَيْسَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ وَعَمِلُواْ الصَّالِحَاتِ جُنَاحٌ فِيمَا طَعِمُواْ إِذَا مَا اتَّقَواْ وَّآمَنُواْ وَعَمِلُواْ الصَّالِحَاتِ ثُمَّ اتَّقَواْ وَّآمَنُواْ ثُمَّ اتَّقَواْ وَّأَحْسَنُواْ وَاللّهُ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِين
“On those who believe and do good there is no blame for what they did, when they are careful (of their duty) and believe and do good deeds, then they are careful (of their duty) and believe, then they are careful (of their duty) and do good (to others) and Allah loves those who do good (to others).
(Surah Maidah 5:93)
Allah says in Surah Maidah Ayat no. 137:
إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ ثُمَّ كَفَرُواْ ثُمَّ آمَنُواْ ثُمَّ كَفَرُواْ ثُمَّ ازْدَادُواْ كُفْرًا لَّمْ يَكُنِ اللّهُ لِيَغْفِرَ لَهُمْ وَلاَ لِيَهْدِيَهُمْ سَبِيلاً
“Surely (as for) those who believe then disbelieve, again believe and again disbelieve, then increase in disbelief, Allah will not forgive them not guide them in the (right) path.”
(Surah Maidah 5:137)
Belief is the highest stage than Islam. In this way the highest stage than belief is favour and certainty of faith. They have three stages Knowledge of faith, positive knowledge and certain truth. Allah says in Surah Takasur Ayat no 5 to 7.
كَلَّا لَوْ تَعْلَمُونَ عِلْمَ الْيَقِينِ لَتَرَوُنَّ الْجَحِيمَ ثُمَّ لَتَرَوُنَّهَا عَيْنَ الْيَقِينِ
“Nay! If you had known with a certain knowledge. You should most certainly have seen the hell, Then you shall most certainly see it with the eye of certainty.”
(Surah Takasur 2:5-6-7)
Surah Waqiah Ayat no. 95 says:
إِنَّ هَذَا لَهُوَ حَقُّ الْيَقِينِ
“Most surely this is a certain truth”
(Surah Waqiah 57:95)
Hazrat Amirul Mo-mineen says if curtains would remove then also there is no more capacity in my faith.
We can clarify the three stages of belief such as (1) knowledge of faith (seeing the smoke of fire a man ensures of fire) (2) Positive knowledge (a man be ensures by seeing with his own eyes) (3) Certain knowledge (a man can touch it and creates faith of its existence).
source : QALBE SALEEM/Shaheede Mehraab Ayatullah-ul-Uzma Al-Haaj Sayed Abdul Husain Dastghaib Shirazi (r.a.)