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The Day of Arafah is on the 9th of Dhul Hijjah. This day takes place during the Hajj. On this day, the pilgrims performing Hajj go to the plains of Arafat. There, they pray to Allah, combining their Dhuhr and Asr prayers. Then, they make dua for the whole day. They stand facing the Qiblah until sunset, asking for forgiveness for their sins. The gathering at Arafat is the greatest Hajj ritual. Indeed, the Prophet (PBUH) declared in a hadith in Sunan Abu Dawud that Hajj is Arafah.
The Day of Arafah is the day on which Islam was Perfected
According to a hadith in Sahih Al-Bukhari, a Jewish man, addressing Umar (RA), mentioned the Quranic verse from Surah Al-Ma’idah in which Allah informs the believers that He has perfected their religion for them and selected Islam for them as their faith. The Jew said that if this verse had been revealed to the Jews, they would have taken the day of its revelation as an Eid (festival).
Umar (RA) responded by saying that he knew the day of the verse’s revelation. Its revelation took place on the Day of Arafah, on a Friday. Thus, we know that Allah perfected the religion of Islam on this day. Allah chose this day to reveal the verse that confirmed the perfection of Islam and the completion of His favor.
Allah swore an oath by the Day of Arafah
Our Lord only swears by things that are mighty. The Day of Arafah is the witnessed day by which Allah swears in Surah Al-Buruj. In a hadith in Sunan At-Tirmidhi, we find out that the witnessed day by which Allah swears in Surah Al-Buruj is the Day of Arafah. Moreover, the Day of Arafah is the odd by which Allah swore in Surah Al-Fajr. The even is the day of Eid Al-Adha, while the odd is the Day of Arafah, according to Ibn Abbas (RA).
Fasting on the Day of Arafah is an expiation for two years
As we see in Sahih Muslim, a person questioned the Prophet (PBUH) about fasting on the Day of Arafah. In reply, he stated that it expiates for the evil deeds of the past year and the following year. Believers who are not performing the Hajj pilgrimage should fast on the Day of Arafah in order to have their sins of the past and coming year expiated.
However, fasting on this day is not Sunnah for those who are performing Hajj. The reason for this is that the Prophet (PBUH) did not fast on this day while in Arafah. Moreover, the Prophet (PBUH) prohibited fasting on the Day of Arafah while in Arafah. Hence, those who are on Hajj should not fast on this day.
Allah took the covenant from Adam’s descendants on the Day of Arafah
In a hadith in Musnad Ahmad, Muhammad (PBUH) stated that Allah took the covenant from Adam’s descendants in Arafah.
Allah brought forth all of Adam’s progeny and had them all testify that He is their Lord. This covenant ensures that one cannot rightfully claim not to know about Allah’s Lordship on the Day of Reckoning. It shall also make sure that people cannot blame their fathers for polytheism in order to absolve themselves. This is the greatest of all covenants, and it took place on the great Day of Arafah.
Allah frees the largest amount of people from Hell on the Day of Arafah
There is a hadith in Sahih Muslim that confirms that Allah frees the largest amount of people from the Hellfire on the Day of Arafah. No other day sees as many people released from the unbearable torture of Hell. Therefore, this is a day of forgiveness and mercy. Also, on this day, Allah expresses pride in the people of Arafah to His angels, telling the angels to look at His servants who have come untidy and dusty. It is essential for believers to turn to Allah and ask for His forgiveness on this day of mercy.
Muslims should make dua on the Day of Arafah
In a Hadith in Sunan At-Tirmidhi, the Prophet (PBUH) said that the most outstanding dua is the supplication on the Day of Arafah, and the most exceptional of what he and the Prophets that preceded him have said is: “La ilaha ill-Allah wahdahu la sharika lahu lahul-mulku wa lahul-hamdu wa huwa ‘ala kulli shai’in qadir” (affirming that Allah is the only One who has the right to be worshipped, without the association of any partner). Sovereignty and all praise belong to Allah, and He has omnipotence over all things.
We should recite the Tahleel, Takbeer, Tahmeed, and Tasbeeh
Muslims should recite the Tahleel, Takbeer, Tahmeed, and Tasbeeh as much as we are able to on the Day of Arafah, as well as on the 11th, 12th, and 13th of Dhul Hijjah, which are the days of Tashreeq. Tahleel is to say “Laa ilaaha il-lal-laah”. Takbeer is to say “Allahu Akbar”. Tahmeed is to say “Alhamdulillah”. Tasbeeh is to say “Subhanallah”.
Believers should seek Allah’s forgiveness
In Muwatta Malik, we learn that there is no day on which Satan is more humiliated, cast out, loathsome, or furious than on the Day of Arafah. The reason for his terrible state on the Day of Arafah is that he witnesses Allah’s supreme Mercy, and His disregard for immensely bad deeds. The only exception to this is what Satan was shown on the Day of Badr.
As the Day of Arafah is one where Allah showers us with His Mercy and forgiveness, we should make the most of it by repenting as much as possible and asking Him for forgiveness repeatedly. On the Day of Arafah, every believer should remember that Allah is the Most Merciful and seek forgiveness for his sins, no matter how evil or plentiful they may be.