A Brief Explanation of Lailatul Al Miraj
Angel Jibreel, PBUH went with 70,000 angels to take Prophet Mohammad, PBUH, to Jerusalem Mosque - Al- Quds. Prophet Mohammad, PBUH, was sleeping and Angel Gabriel, PBUH went to Prophet Mohammad, PBUH to wake him. Angel Jibreel, PBUH shook him twice to awake him up, but Prophet Mohammad kept sleeping. Then the third time Angel Jibreel shook him and our beloved Prophet woke up.
He was told to circle the kabba seven times and was told he was going to Jerusalem and then to the seven heavens. He was taken to Jerusalem on a white animal called Al-Buraq. This animal was a cross between a mule and donkey, but he had wings.
There are many important things to remember about this blessed night.
1. It has never been verified that the 27th of Rajab is when the Miraj took place. Scholars have stated it could have been in Ramadan or even during the month of Al-Hijrah. So with this knowledge and the fact that Prophet Mohammad, PBUH or his sahabah never placed importance on this night, neither shall we.
2. Fasting should not be done to celebrate or commemorate Al Miraj unless the 27th of Miraj lands on a day you regular fast like a Monday or a Thursday. It is an innovation to deviate away from the sunnah of Prophet Mohammad, PBUH and his companions.
Read more on this subject: Is Fasting on Lailatul Miraj Haram?
3. Prophet Mohammad traveled from Mecca to Al Quds in Jerusalem in seconds and from Al Quds to the heavens in seconds. The significance of going to Al Quds is so this mosque would become valued to all Muslims and would become part of the three most valued mosques in the world.
4. During this trip His Prophethood was sanctified and the institution of the 5 daily prayers were created. Although Allah originally mentioned 50 and then 10, 5 daily prayers was finally agreed upon. Imagine if you had to pray 50 times a day?
5. Prophet Mohammad besides meeting and greeting the Prophets who went before him and seeing the 7 heavens and Allah, he also saw the hellfire and who was there. He was able to come back and warn the nation of such horrible tortures in the hellfire.
Prophet Mohammad, PBUH, saw Malik, the guardian of Hell. He saw the Hell dwellers, of whom were those who unjustly eat up the property of the orphans. They have flews similar to those of camels, swallowing red-hot stones and then issuing out of their backs. He also saw the people who take usury with bellies so huge that they were unable to move around; they are trodden by the people of Pharaoh when these are admitted into Hell. In the same place he saw adulterers who were offered tasty fatty meat and rotten smelly one but they would choose the latter ones. The licentious women were also there hanging from their breasts.
6. The Prophet’s breast was opened and cleaned by Jibreel with the water of Zamzam.
7. He was questioned about which drink he preferred, wine or milk. Prophet Mohammad, PBUH, chose milk.
He (the angel) said: “You have been guided on Al-Fitrah or you have attained Al-Fitrah. Had you selected wine, your nation would have been misled.” [It is a symbolic way of saying that good and evil in the form of milk and wine were brought before the Prophet and he instinctively made a choice for the good.
“Glory be to Allah, Who carried His servant at night from Al Masjid al¬ Haram (in Makkah) to Masjid al Aqsa (in Jerusalem al Quds), the precincts of which We have blessed so that We may show him of Our Signs. Verily He is the All-Hearing, the All Seeing.” (Quran (17: 1)
“Will you then argue with him about what he saw? He certainly saw him (Archangel Gabriel, Jibra’il) during his other ascent to the Lote tree (in the seven heavens) near which is Paradise. When the tree was covered with a covering, (Muhammad’s) eyes did not deceive him, nor did they lead him to falsehood. He certainly saw the greatest (signs) of the existence of his Lord”. (Quran 53: 12 to 18)
8. The jeerers of His age found this new revelation a chance to laugh and poke so they gave him many questions about Masjid Al-Quds and to their surprise He was able to describe the mosque to a tee. As for those Muslims who did believe, they did not question, but just accepted the truth. Khadijah was the first to convert to Islam and Abu Bakr was the second. The mockers of his age went to Abu Bakr and asked if this is the truth and he said, he believed and verified this to be true and thus was named As-Siddiq (the verifier of the truth).
You can read the detailed account of Al Miraj in this article: Al Miraj
The Seven Heavens.
First Heaven: Angel Jibreel instructed the guardian angel to open the door. The guardian angel asked who was at the door and Angel Jibreel stated it was ‘Jibreel.’ It was said, ‘Who is with you?’ He said, ‘Muhammad.’ It was said, ‘Has he been sent for?’ He replied, ‘He has indeed been sent for.’ The gate was opened. There he found Adam who expressed faith in his Prophethood. He also saw martyrs to his right and the wretched on his left.
Second Heaven: There he saw John, son of Zachariya, Jesus (Issa) and both professed faith in his Prophethood.
Third Heaven: He saw Joseph (Yusuf) and he too professed faith in His Prophethood.
Fourth Heaven: He saw Prophets Idris and Enoch. They saluted him and expressed faith in his Prophethood.
Fifth Heaven: There He saw Prophet Aaron (Harun). He too professed faith in his Prophethood.
Sixth Heaven: There he saw Moses and He saluted him. When Prophet Mohammad went to leave he saw Moses crying. When he asked Moses why, "Moses answered that he was weeping because he witnessed a man sent after him as a Messenger (Muhammad) who was able to lead more of his people to the Paradise than he himself did."
Seventh Heaven: He saw Prophet Abraham and saluted him.
He then was carried to Sidrat-al-Muntaha (the remotest lote tree) and there Prophet Mohammad, PBUH was shown Al-Bait-al-Ma‘mûr [(the much frequented house) which has seventy thousand angels there daily. He was then presented to Allah and experienced the utmost thrill in His presence.
There His Lord ordained for his servants to pray 50 times a day, but Moses encouraged him to ask for less. Then Allah agreed to 10 and then to 5 daily prayers,
The Prophet then mounted the Buraq and descended with Archangel Jibreel again to Masjid Al Aqsa in Jerusalem. From there, he returned to his home in Mecca where he found his bed still warm.
What a joyous day that was. Not just for Prophet Mohammad, but for the entire nation. While there were many who did not believe this beautiful story, there were many who did. After the Prophethood for 10 years only 100 people became Muslim. His life was not easy and he lived a poor life, but he always represented the Quran exactly.
We are honored to be party to this beautiful story and we can only hope to be in his presence one day and have him tell us all about the extra parts that were left out. May Allah bestow many blessings on him and his kindred. Ameen!
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