Month of Shaban

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Shabaan is a month of high excellence and is dedicated to the Leader of the Prophets (saaw). He used to keep fasts during this month and join it with the month of Ramadhan. He used to say, “Sha’baan is a month dedicated to me. Whoever keeps one fast during my month will definitely go to heaven”.
It has been reported from Imam Ja’far Sadiq (as) that on the commencement of this month, Imam Zainul Abideen (as) would gather his companions and address them, “O my companions, do you know which month this is? It is the month of Shabaan about which the Holy Messenger (saaw) used to say that it is dedicated to him. So keep fasts during this month in the love of your Holy Prophet (saaw) and to attain closeness to your Creator. By Allah in whose hands is my soul, I have heard from my father, Hussein ibn Ali (as), that he had heard from Commander of Faithful (as), that whoever keeps fast during Sha’baan in the love of the Holy Prophet (saw) and to attain closeness to Allah will become a friend to Allah and on the Day of Judgment will be close to Allah by His grace and Paradise will be assured to him.”
Sheikh Tusi has reported from Safwane Jammal that Imam Ja’far Sadiq (as) asked him to encourage his neighbors and friends to fast in the month of Sha’baan.
He asked the Imam if there was any special significance for it, and he replied that when the month commenced, the Holy Messenger (saw) would command his announcer to proclaim in Medina that the Holy Messenger (saaw) wished them to be aware that Sha’baan was a month dedicated to him and Allah bestows mercy on whosoever associates with him in this month by fasting. Imam Ja’far Sadiq (as) proceeded to report from Commander of Faithful (as) that since hearing the announcement, he never missed any fast during the month of Sha’baan and, Allah willing, hoped not to miss any during the remainder of his life. He added that fasting in the months of Sha’baan and Ramadhan is a means of repentance and pardon from Allah.
Keeping fast on Thursdays of the month also carried great significance. It has been reported that the heavens are decorated each Thursday in the month of Sha’baan and the angles pray to Allah to forgive all those who fast on that day and their prayers are accepted. It is stated in the reports of the narrations of the Holy prophet (saaw) that whoever fasts on Mondays and Thursdays of this month, Allah will fulfill twenty of his worldly wishes and twenty of his wishes of the Hereafter.
It is recommended to give alms in this month even if it is as small as a half date. Almsgiving in this month brings about rescue from Hellfire. In this respect, it has been narrated that when Imam al-Sadiq (a.s) was asked about the merits of observing fasting in Rajab, he answered, “Why do you not ask about the merits of observing fasting in Sha`ban.” “What is then the reward of him who observes fasting on one day in Sha`ban, Son of Allah’s Messenger?” asked the narrator. The Imam (a.s) answered, “The reward will be Paradise. I swear it by Allah.” The narrator then asked again, “What are the best deeds that should be done in Sha`ban.” The Imam (a.s) answered, “Almsgiving and seeking forgiveness are the best deeds in Sha`ban. Verily, if anyone of you gives alms in Sha`ban, Almighty Allah will breed that alms in the very same way as you breed your small camels. Hence, this alms will be as huge as Mount Uhud on the Resurrection Day.”

Hadith on excellencies
The month of Shaban is really valuable and a lot of our Ahadith point to the significance of this great month. Some of our great scholars and narrators of Ahadith like Shaikh Sadooq have gathered these Ahadith in a book and in order to remind ourselves of the high rank of this month we narrate some of them here:
Sheikh Sadooq narrates from Ibn Abbas with the chain of narration, “In the presence of Prophet Mohammad we discussed the greatness of the month of Shaban. Prophet Mohammad said, “It is an honorable month and it is my month. The carriers of the throne of Allah respect it and know its great magnitude. The blessings for the faithful increase in this month. This month is the month of performing actions, so the reward of good actions is seventy times more (than other months). The evil gets cleansed and sins get forgiven and the good deeds are accepted. Allah is proud of his servants. (In this month) Allah looks at the fast of those who fast and the worship of worshipper and boasts about it to the carriers of His throne.”[3]
At that moment Ali Ibn Abutalib stood up and asked, “May my mother and father be sacrificed before you, please tell us some of the virtues of this month so we are encouraged to pray and fast more and strive more in the way of our Beloved Lord.” Then the Prophet started with some of the rewards of fasting in this month and said, “Anyone who fasts on the first day, Allah gives him seventy rewards each equal to the reward of one year of worship….” And at the end he said, “Anyone who fasts all the thirty days of Shaban, Gabriel calls out to him from the front of Allah’s throne and says, “Start your life anew! Allah has forgiven all the sins that you had done!”[4]
In another hadith Sadooq narrates from our sixth Imam that he said, “My father told me that his father gathered all of his companions on the first of Shaban and he said, “Do you know what month is this month? This month is the month of Shaban. About this month Prophet Mohammad has said, “Shaban is my special month. Be aware and fast in this month to get closer to Allah, for the love of your Prophet.”
I swear by Allah who holds my life in His Hand, I heard from my father, Imam Hussein and he said, “I heard my father Ali Ibn Abutaleb say, “Anyone who fasts in this month for the love of the Prophet and wants to get closer to Allah, Allah will make heaven obligatory for him.”[5]
About the month of Shaban, the great scholar Ayatollah Mirza Javad Maleki Tabrizi in his book of Almoraqebat said,
“This month is extremely valuable for the seekers of Allah. One of the nights that could be the Night of Qadr is in this month. From the time that Adam came to earth, God promised all of His messengers that victory will be in the hands of the man who will be born in this night (the fifteenth night). Also God promised that He will fill the earth with justice after it will be filled with oppression and cruelty.”
About the importance of this month it is enough to know that the Prophet has said, “This month is my month and may Allah bless those who help me in this month”
Whoever hears this invitation must strive to respond to it and be included amongst the invited ones. His brother and his successor said,
“I have not missed the fasting in Shaban from the time that I heard someone calling out at the Prophet’s order (to encourage people for the fasting in Shaban) and I will not miss it until the end of my life Insha’Allah”.
By this hadith you can understand the significance of fasting over praying, donation and other good deeds.[6]
One of the Mostahabaat that are highly encouraged in this month is a Salawat that has been narrated from Imam Zein Al-Abedin. This salawat is not only a religious masterpiece or a lovely supplication with Allah, but it is also a deep sea of theology and knowledge. Its teachings are primarily about the Imamat and its high position in Islam.
In this chapter, the Imam mentions two important activities of Prophet in the month of Shaban; fasting and engaging in worships.
About fasting in this month, there are many Ahadith that encourage the wakeful heart. About the fast in the Shaban Imam Reza has said,
“Whoever fasts one day of Shaban, just for the sake of God’s reward he will enter the heaven and whoever repents to Allah seventy times, on the Day of Judgment he will be raised with the Prophet and God’s appreciation will be obligatory on him. Whoever donates in this month even by half of a date, God will forbid his body to go to hell. Whoever fasts three days of Shaban and connects these days to the month of Ramadan, God will give him the reward for the two complete months”[1].
Also Imam Sadeq (as)encourages us by a hadith that says, “Anyone who fasts the first day of Shaban, it is obligated upon him to go to heaven and anyone who fasts two days of Shaban, God will look at him every day and night in this world and he will continuously be under the observance of God’s mercy. Whoever fast three days he will visit God in the heaven in Allah’s throne”[2].
Also in another Hadith Imam Sadeq(as) is not just encouraging the narrator, but also told him to reassure his friends and family to fast in the month of Shaban. Safvan Jammal narrates that, “Imam told me to encourage whoever is around you.” I asked, “Is there any (special) reward for fasting in Shaban”. Imam replied, “Yes, whenever the Prophet saw the moon (that shows the starting) of Shaban he ordered somebody to call all the people, and he would say: O the people of Yathreb, I am the messenger of Allah to you. Be aware Shaban is my month and may Allah bless those who help me in this month” Then Imam Sadeq said, “The Commander of the Faithful has said, “From the moment I heard this, I have never missed fasting in the month of Shaban and I will not miss it InshAllah.” Then Imam Ali said, “Fasting two month continuously is the repentance to Allah.”[3]
We must also request God for success and along with Imam Sajjad(as) we must say,
“This is the month of Thy Prophet, the Messenger-in-chief, the month of Sha'ban surrounded by Thy mercy and blessings from all sides, In which the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be on him and on his children) used to exert himself willingly in the matter of fasting and praying in its days and nights, to show his humility before Thee for the respect and honor Thou bestowed on him, until his last breath.”

Observe fasting . Perform Ghusl
General Salaah for a new month

Numerous prayers have been reported in “IQBAL” with significant rewards :-
i) Two Rakat with Suraq Hamd & 3 times Sura Ikhlass in each & then say "O My God this is my covenant with you until resurrection day " Allhumma HadhaAhadi indak ila Yawmal qiyama" God will protect him from Satan& grant him rewards of the truthful ones

ii)Twelve rakaats with the recitation of Sura Ikhlas fifteen times after the recitation of the Al-Hamd. in each rakat

iii)Fast for first 3 days & in each night recite 2 Rakat with Sura Hamd & Sura Ikhlass 11 times Sayyid ibn Tawoos has reported from the Holy Messenger (saw) that a person who fasts on the first three days of this month and on their eve recites this will be greatly rewarded.

It is a day of great excellence and it has been reported from Ja’far Sadiq (as) that whoever fasts on that day is assured of Heaven.
1st Shaban - Birth Lady Zainab (as) some traditions