Fasting on the last day of the year
25 Aug 2011 11:22 GMT
I received an SMS telling me that to a fast on the last day of the year, since the records of our deeds for the previous year are raised up to Allah on that day. Therefore, a Muslim should have this record end on a good note of fasting. Is this correct?

Answered by

Sheikh Sâmî al-Mâjid

There is no textual evidence – neither from the Qur'ân nor the authentic Sunnah – to support such a claim. We should also realize that the determination of "the end of the year" – whether we are using the Hijri or the solar calendar – is a man-made determination. It is not something established by the sacred texts.

What we find in the Sunnah is that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Our deeds are presented to Allah on Mondays and Thursdays, and Allah forgives on those days everyone who does not associate with Him partners in worship, except for two people who harbor a grudge against each other. It is declared: Leave those two until they reconcile." [Sahîh Muslim]

We also find where the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Our deeds are presented on Mondays and Thursdays, and I like to have my deeds presented when I am fasting." [Sunan al-Tirmidhî]

There is a hadîth that says our deeds are "raised up" to Allah in the month of Sha`bân; however, its chain of transmission is weak. It is related that Usâmah b. Zayd asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) why he fasted so much in the month of Sha`bân, and he replied: "This is a month between Rajab and Ramadân that people are heedless of, and it is a month in which our deeds are raised up to the Lord of All the Worlds. I love to have my deed raised up while I am fasting." [Sunan al-Nasâ'î and Musnad Ahmad]

In the Qur'ân, we read that all of the affairs of the year are decreed on Laylah al-Qadr, matters like life and death, providence and all other matters. This night is in the month of Ramadân, and is certainly not construed by anybody as being the "end of the year". Moreover, the verse says nothing about our deeds being raised up on that night.

Allah says: " We sent it (the Qur'ân) down during a Blessed Night: for We (ever) wish to warn (against Evil). In this night) is made distinct every affair of wisdom, a command from Us; surely We are the senders." [Sûrah al-Dukhkhân: 3-5]

We can see that there is no basis to claim that special prayers or fasts are to be observed on the last day of the year – whether on the Hijri calendar or the solar calendar.

And Allah knows best.

This message that you received is a good example for why we as Muslims should take care never forward SMS messages that we receive without our first verifying the truth of what they claim, especially when those messages specify certain days for particular acts of worship.

Source: Islam Today

-- Al Arabiya Digital