The blessed month of Ramadan is observed by Muslims worldwide as an act of fasting to commemorate the revelation of the Quran on Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) as per Islamic dogmas. The ritual of fasting among Muslims redirects the heart away from worldly activities to purify the soul by freeing it from negative and harmful activities. Ramadan is the best practice for self-improvement, self-control, discipline, and empathy to encourage charity towards the less fortunate ones.
The rewards that a Muslim can reap in the blessed month of Ramadan are diversified and the chance to commit a sin decreased because no barriers can exist between man and his Lord in the holy month of Ramadan. The blessings of this holy month are countless and it is divided into three stages i.e. Ashra (ten days each). The word Ashra is an Arabic word which means “ten”. Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said: “It (Ramadan) is the month, whose beginning is mercy, its middle, forgiveness, and its end, release from the fire of hell.” Below we will discuss the importance of each Ashra with their Duas related to them.
Three Ashra’s of Ramadan
Ramadan has three parts and each part is for ten days, making it a month of three Ashra’s.
1. First Ashra (Mercy): First, ten days of Ramadan are the days of Mercy. Every Muslim must seek the mercy of Almighty Allah in these days. There is a special verse that usually recites Muslims in the first ten days. The Dua for the first Ashra is, Translation: “O! My Lord forgive and have Mercy and You are the Best of Merciful.” The objective of first Ashra is practising being merciful to other fellow beings by giving charity; the act that Allah loves the most. Treat fellow Muslims well by controlling your temper.
2. Second Ashra (Forgiveness): Second Ashra of Ramadan consists of the next ten days; it is the time of forgiveness. These are the days of forgiveness and a Muslim must seek forgiveness from Almighty Allah and repent for all his sins. There is a special verse that usually recites Muslims in the next ten days. The Dua for the second Ashra is,
Translation: “ I ask forgiveness of my sins from Allah who is my Lord and I turn towards Him.” It’s the time where the forgiveness of Almighty Allah is at its peak, and this is the best time for asking about forgiveness for all the sins from Almighty Allah. Always ask for forgiveness from Almighty Allah in all these days. Do make sure to not repeat the sins after you seek forgiveness.
3. Third Ashra (Nijat): Third Ashra of Ramadan starts from 21st and ends on 29th or 30th of Ramadan according to the moon. Third Ashra is known as Safety from the Hell which means Nijat. At the end of Ramadan is about seeking in Allah Almighty from Hellfire. Every Muslim must pray for the safety of Hellfire. Last Ashra is very important and superior. In this Ashra Lailatul Qadar also falls which is better than the nights of thousand months. Many Muslims also practice Aitkaf in and try to maximize their prayers. Allah Almighty stated in the Holy Quran about Lailatul Qadar: “We sent it (Quran) down on a blessed Night. Verily, We are ever warning. Therein (in that Night) is decreed every matter of ordainment. Amran (i.e. a command or this Quran or His Decree of every matter) from Us. Verily, We are ever sending (the Messenger) (As) a Mercy from your Lord” (Quran, 44: 3-6). Dua for third Ashra is, Translation: “O Allah! Save me from Hell – Fire.”
May Allah Almighty give us the strength to seek Allah’s mercy, forgiveness, and Nijat from Hellfire in this Ramadan! Ameen