Below is a transcription of a lecture on how to benefit from the blessed days of Dhul-Hijjah by Umm ‘Abdur-Rahmân. May Allâh reward the sister who transcribed the lecture and sent it as a contribution to be placed on this blog:
“By the ten nights.” [Al- Fajr 89:2]
The “ten nights” which Allâh [subhâna wa ta’âlâ] is swearing by here, are the first 10 days of Dhul-Hijjah.  Allâh [subhâna wa ta’âlâ] swears an oath by them, and swearing an oath by something is indicative of its importance and great benefit.
Ibn ‘Abbâs [radi Allâhu ‘anhu] narrated that Prophet [sall-Allâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam] said: “There is no deed more precious in the sight of Allâh, or greater in reward, than a good deed done during the ten days of Sacrifice.” He was asked: “Not even jihâd for the sake of Allâh?” He said: “Not even jihâd for the sake of Allâh, except in the case of a man who went out to fight giving himself and his wealth up for the cause, and came back with nothing.” 
So, my sisters [and brothers] take note of the following:
Have the intention to spread this important information.
It is a great chance to collect uncountable hasanât [rewards].
It is a great chance to renew your relation with Allâh [subhâna wa ta’âlâ].
Prepare now so you can start from the first night/day of the month [i.e. as soon as Dhul-Hijjah is announced]. You don’t want to miss a moment of the best days in the sight of Allâh [subhâna wa ta’âlâ].
Since the Prophet [sall-Allâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam] referred to the 10 days of Dhul-Hijjah as: “…no days better than these days in the sight of Allâh.” , the scholars have said that these are better than Ramadan.  Therefore, be very vigilant and don’t waste these precious moments. Ask Allâh to help you to benefit from this period of His special Grace.
Ask yourself these questions [non-rhetorical]:
Did you intend to benefit from these days?
What have you done to prepare for these 10 days?
Did you prepare a program?
What is your plan of action?
Here is a brief guide to help you to prepare for the best days of the year [inspired by a lecture by Shaykh Muhammad Hassan Yâqûb]:
I am a subscriber to a number of Muslim mailing lists and regularly get numerous beneficial emails arrive in my inbox, the latest of which is courtesy of the Muslim Saturday Club – Here are a few extracts from the email [click the “more” link below to read the article in full]:
“The MSC issued a comprehensive questionnaire to almost 50 growing Muslimahs aged 11+. The very last question put to them read: ‘What worldly item do you think destroys your relationship with Allâh?’ 48 girls answered: ‘TV’
“…stats show that the average person watches more than 4 hours of TV each day (or 28 hours/week, or 2 months of non-stop TV-watching per year). In a 65-year life, that person will have spent 9 years of their life glued to the box.”
“As a responsible adult would you allow a child in your care to view, be subjected to or be part of any of the following:
– Would you allow your child to attend a live music concert lasting a number of hours, featuring loud blaring music (along with inappropriate lyrics), scantly dressed musicians and screaming fans?
– Would you allow your child to witness a crime, rape, robbery, shooting, murder etc?
– Would you allow your child to be in the company of those with little shame and immorality, e.g. would you allow them to free mix, witness first hand the ‘enchanting’ atmosphere in a pub, upcoming bar, night club, holiday resort etc?
– Would you allow your child to experiment with drugs, handle a gun, befriend and learn from a gangster?”
I came across this excellent reminder someplace on the internet, not too sure exactly where now, but may it be of benefit nevertheless, bi-idhnillâh:
Have you ever seen a man whose back has become hunched, his hair gray, his steps heavy and his teeth lost? He has difficulty in praying, fasting, eating and drinking. He was once a young man like you. He lived the life of young men. He walked, played and entertained himself as young men do. He thought that the days of young age will be long and the strength of youth will last forever.
Today, after he has become old and weak, afflicted with many ailments, he cries over his past. He cries over the time he wasted in vain play and worthless actions. He cries over the strength which has departed him and wishes to regain it so that he would utilise it in the obedience of Allâh. But it is too late. Every new day calls upon the son of Âdam saying: “O son of Âdam! I am a new day, and will be a witness to what you do, so take advantage of me; because once I leave I will never come back until the day of Resurrection.”
I came across the following beneficial PDF translated by sister Farhia and featured on her blog, may we be of those who benefit from it, bi-idhnillâh. Here is an extract from the PDF [click the link underneath the extract to read the article in full]:
Imâm an-Nawawî said: “The pious predecessors would never teach hadîth and fiqh except to someone who had memorised the Qur’ân”
Ibn ‘Abdul-Barr also said: “Seeking knowledge is in consecutive levels and ranks, it does not befit that they should be bypassed. Whoever bypasses them at once, then he has bypassed the path of the pious predecessors – may Allâh have mercy on them. Whoever bypasses them intentionally will go astray…”
I came across the following beneficial PDF whilst surfing the world wide web, may we be of those who benefit from it, bi-idhnillâh. Here is an extract from the PDF [click the link underneath the extract to read the article in full]:
Although ‘Uthmân took an oath that he had not written the letter, the rebels demanded that he abdicate but ‘Uthmân refused. Suyûtî states that the Prophet [sall-Allâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam] said: “Perhaps Allâh will robe you in a garment, so if the hypocrites wish to 7strip it off you, do not take it off you until you meet me.” A siege began of ‘Uthmân’s house, he was prevented from coming out of his house and eventually the water supply was cut off. A number of companions including Hasan, Husayn, Muhammad bin Talhah, ‘Abdullâh bin Zubayr [radî Allâhu ‘anhum] guarded the house and some of them were wounded in a fight with the rebels
‘Uthmân requested that those who were defending him should leave, and rejected repeated offers of assistance from various companions (including Abû Hurayrah and Zayd bin Thabbit). ‘Uthmân said: “I ask those who believe they owe me obedience to hold back their hands and their weapons… I have no need of any defence” He also said: “The Prophet [sall-Allâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam] made a covenant with me and I will be patient with it.” Ahmad narrates that during the siege ‘Uthmân said: “I saw the Messenger of Allâh [sall-Allâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam] in a dream, and I saw Abû Bakr and ‘Umar. They told me: ‘Be patient, you will break fast with us tomorrow’.” Then he called for a Qur’ân and he spread it open before him.
I received the following aptly timed beneficial reminder in my inbox, may we be of those who benefit from it, bi-idhnillâh:
Ramadân is a school of îmân and a “stop to recharge one’s spiritual batteries” – to acquire one’s provision for the rest of the year…
For when will one take a lesson and change for better if not in the month of Ramadân?
The noble month is a true school of transformation in which we change our actions, habits and manners that are in variance with the Law of Allâh [subhâna wa ta’âlâ].
“Verily, Allâh does not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves.” [Ar-Ra’d 13:11]
If you are from those who benefited from Ramadân, fulfilled the requirements of taqwâ, truly fasted the month, prayed in it with truthfulness, and strove against you soul, then praise and thank Allâh, and ask Him for steadfastness upon it until you meet your death. Be not like one who has sewn a shirt and then destroyed it. Have you seen one who sewed a shirt, so when she looked at it, she liked it. Then she destroyed it pulling out thread by thread for no reason. What would people say about such a person?! Or have you seen one who earns a fortune trading throughout the day, and then when the night comes, he throws away all he has earned. What would people say about such a person?!
This is the condition of one who returns to sinning and evildoing after Ramadân and leaves obedience and righteous actions. So after he was favoured with the blessing of obedience and enjoyment of communicating with Allâh he returned to the blaze of sins and evil actions. How evil are the people who know Allâh only in Ramadân!
I came across the following beneficial reminder by Muftî Zubair Bayat whilst surfing the world wide web, may we be of those who benefit from it, bi-idhnillâh:
Is it sheer coincidence that the Internet and WWW [World Wide Web] contain the words ‘NET’ and ‘WEB’? Read on and work it out for yourself. Now picture a person trapped in a net, battling to get out. Also try to imagine a fly caught in a web, struggling to escape. Since the crisis is visible and tangible in the above cases, sympathy is felt and help may be rendered if required. But there is another NET, a WEB, much stronger and highly invisible, which traps its hapless ‘victim’ in such an enchanting way, the poor ‘victim’, far from wanting to escape, actually begins to enjoy and relish this ‘captivity’. Yes, this sticky WEB, this unseen NET is none other than what is called the INTERNET, its WWW and its ‘chat rooms’.
What is the Cure for this ‘Addiction Virus’?
Such is the terrible addiction and attraction to the NET and the WEB; it is difficult to say whether the ‘surfer’ has been bit by a ‘bug’ or is just on some kind of heavy ‘drug’. Many are concerned about ‘viruses’ infecting their beloved PC’s but what cure is there for the user who maybe infected by the ‘addiction virus’? Once ‘on-line’ and ‘into cyber space’ the user seems to have forgotten everything in the real world and enters into a kind of trance that is described as being in a state of ‘virtual reality’ where everything is really unreal but appears to be so real! For many, once they enter this ‘cyber world’ it is as if they are on another planet. Then gone is the concern for salâh, good deeds, work, studies and other important chores in life. Now it is the sheer thrill of being ‘connected’ and ‘on line’. A Muslim must be concerned that being ‘connected’ to the Net must not ‘disconnect’ him from Allâh and being ‘on-line’ should not take him ‘off-track’ from the ‘Straight Path’.