Step 23 – Sufi Ramadhan Secrets and Gems by ~Sajad Ali~
****When is Laylatul Qadr (Night of Power) **Disclaimer ***
Laylatul Qadr is not always in Ramadan it moves around the year***
In general, it is agreed that it is most likely to be in the last ten nights of Ramadan, with the odd nights being more likely. Of the odd nights, the night of the 27th (which is the night before the 27th of Ramadan, for the Islamic day starts with nightfall) is most likely. Imam Shafi`i said that it is most likely to be the 21st, then the 23rd, then the 27th. Imam Nawawi followed the position of Imam Muzani and Imam Ibn Khuzayma that it moves around within the last ten nights. [Nawawi, al-Majmu` Sharh al-Muhadhdhab, 6.488]
However, it could be outside the last ten nights within Ramadan. It may even be outside Ramadan according to both early and late scholars. This has been transmitted from many of the Companions of the Prophet (Allah bless him & give him peace), including Ibn Mas`ud (Allah be pleased with him). It is one of the reported positions of Imam Abu Hanifa, and also of many of the great knowers of Allah, including Ibn Arabi (whose position is quoted by Ibn Abidin with support), Abu’l Hasan al-Shadhili, Sha`rani, and many others.
It has been reported that, “Once the last ten [days of Ramadan] started, the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him, his family, and companions) used to spend the nights in worship, wake his family, strive, and tighten his belt.” [Bukhari and Muslim] Tighten his belt refers to determination.
Imam al-Nafrawi al-Maliki mentions in his al-Fawakih al-Dawani fi Sharh Risalat Ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawani that the position of Imam Malik, Imam Shafi`i and Imam Ahmad, and the majority of the scholars is that Laylat al-Qadr is not a specific night. Rather, it moves around.
Imam Sarakhsi mentions in his Mabsut, a 30-volume masterpiece of Hanafi legal reasoning, proofs, and comparative fiqh that was mainly authored by dictation to students while unjustly imprisoned in a pot well, that the position of most of the Companions (Allah be pleased with him) was that it is on the night of the 27th. (3.127) This understood, others explain, to mean that its most likely night is the night of the 27th of Ramadan. [As in Ruhaybani’s Matalib Uli’n Nuha Sharh Ghayat al-Muntaha 2.225 in Hanbali fiqh]
"Most of the scholars, from the Salaf and the Khalaf agree that Laylat-ul-Qadr can occur on any night of the year, even outside the month of Ramadhan. However, the conclusion of the erudite scholars is that the exact night changes every year. Most years it is in Ramadan while on rarer occasions it occurs outside of Ramadan.
In the years that it is in Ramadan, most of the time it occurs in its last ten days, On less frequent occasions, it occurs in the middle ten days (11-20). In the years that it occurs in the middle ten days, it occurs more often on the 17th or 19th.
In the years that it occurs in the last ten days, it occurs more often in the odd nights (rather than the even nights). In the years that it occurs in the odd nights, it is more frequent that it occurs on the 27th of Ramadhan."
This has been transmitted from many of the Companions of the Prophet (Allah bless him & give him peace), including 'Abdullah Ibn Mas`ud (Allah be pleased with him). It is one of the reported positions of Imam Abu Hanifa, and also the opinion of Imam Malik, ash-Shafi'i, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Ibn Arabi (whose position is quoted by Ibn Abidin with support), Abu’l Hasan al-Shadhili, Sha`rani, and many other knowers of Allah.
Abu Hanifa said that it is not a fixed day but, rather, it moves around in the month. [Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar, from al-Bahr and al-Kafi] As for the hadiths about it being the night of the 27th, Ibn Abidin mentions that Abu Hanifa explained them as meaning a particular year.
Ibn Abidin quotes Ibn Nujaym’s Bahr al-Ra’iq that this is one transmitted position of Abu Hanifa. Another, mentioned in Qadikhan’s Fatawa al-Khaniyya, one of the most important works for fatwa in the school, is that the famous transmission from Imam Abu Hanifa is that it moves around the entire year; it could be in Ramadan, and it could be in another month. Ibn Abidin said,
“This is supported by what the Master of the Knowers of Allah Sayyidi Muhyi al-Din Ibn Arabi mentioned in his Futuhat al-Makkiyya, ‘People differed about Laylat al-Qadr. Some said it moves around the entire year. This is my position, for I have seen it in the month of Sha`ban, and in Rabi`, and in Ramadan. I have seen it most, though, in the month of Ramadan, and, specifically, in the last nights. I saw it once in the second third of Ramadan, on an even night, and once on an odd night. Therefore, I am certain that it moves around the entire year, on both odd and even nights.’
May Allah swta give us the success of following in the footsteps of the inheritors of the Prophet (Allah bless him & give him peace), outwardly and inwardly, and may He make us of those whom He loves.
As you can see no one knows exactly when the Laylatul Qadr is. Most of us practice extra ibaadat on the 27th and there is evidence to suggest that this might be the night. But no one is 100%.
**This is one of the many reasons why one should strive to establish the night vigil prayer (tahajjud), daily or at least two rakah Tawbah every Night***