Rajab is one of those sacred months, which Allaah has chosen and given a special status. Allaah says in Soorah Tawbah:
إِنَّ عِدَّةَ الشُّهُورِ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ اثْنَا عَشَرَ شَهْراً فِي كِتَابِ اللَّهِ يَوْمَ خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ مِنْهَا أَرْبَعَةٌ حُرُمٌ ذَلِكَ الدِّينُ الْقَيِّمُ فَلا تَظْلِمُوا فِيهِنَّ أَنْفُسَكُمْ
“Verily, the number of months with Allaah is twelve months (in a year), so it was ordained by Allaah on the Day when He created the heavens and the earth; of them four (Dhul-Qa3dah, Dhul-Hijjah, Muharram and Rajab) are Sacred. That is the right religion, so wrong not yourselves therein.” (1)
Allaah has commanded us to give special attention to the sanctity of these four months, and refrain from committing sins in them.
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُحِلُّوا شَعَائِرَ اللَّهِ وَلَا الشَّهْرَ الْحَرَامَ
(interpretation of meaning): “O you who believe! Violate not the sanctity of the Symbols of Allaah, nor of the Sacred Month” (2)
meaning avoid sins and do not violate the laws of Allaah for you are required to respect and honor the sacred months – This prohibition includes both sinful deeds and incorrect beliefs. However, we find numerous innovations widespread among the masses of people with regards to the month of Rajab, some of them are fasting, praying Qiyaam on the 27th of Rajab. Also included in these innovations are visiting graves, reciting specific Du3aas, frequently performing 3Umrah in Rajab, etc.
Innovation in religion is one of the serious matters which go against the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah. The Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam did not die until after the religion had been perfected. Allaah says:
الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِينَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِي وَرَضِيتُ لَكُمُ الْإِسْلَامَ دِينًا
(interpretation of the meaning): “This day, I have perfected your religion for you, completed My favor upon you, and have chosen for you Islaam as your religion…” (3)
عن عائشة رضي الله عنها قالت : قال رسول الله عليه وسلم : من أحدث في أمرنا ما ليس منه فهو رد . متفق عليه
It was reported that 3Aayesha radi Allaahu 3Anha said: the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam said: “Whoever innovates something in this matter of ours which is not a part of it, will have it rejected.” (4)
وفي رواية لمسلم : من عمل عملا ليس عليه أمرنا فهو رد
“Whoever does an action which is not a part of this matter of ours will have it rejected.” (5)
The following innovations are commonly practiced in Rajab:
1- Salaat al-Raghaa’ib: This prayer became widespread after the first and best centuries, especially in the fourth century AH. Some liars fabricated this prayer, which is done on the first night of Rajab.
Shaykh al-Islaam Ibn Tayymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
“Salaat al-Raghaa’ib is bid3ah according to the consensus of the scholars of religion, such as Maalik, al-Shaafi3ee, Abu Haneefah, al-Thawriee, al-‘Oozaa’i, al-Layth and others . The hadeeth that is narrated concerning it is a lie according to the consensus of the scholars who have knowledge of hadeeth”.
2- Major Events: It was reported that major events happened in the month of Rajab: but none of these reports are true. It was reported that the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam was born on the first night of Rajab, and that he received his Mission on the twenty-seventh, or twenty-fifth of this month. None of this is correct.
3- Celebrating Prophet’s Night Journey – It was reported with an isnaad that is not saheeh from al-Qaasim ibn Muhammad that the Prophet’s Night Journey (al-Israa’) took place on the twenty-seventh of Rajab. This was denied by Ibraaheem al-Harbi and others.
One innovation that take place during this month is the recitation of the story of the Mi3raaj, and celebrations to commemorate it on the twenty-seventh of Rajab, or singling out this night to perform extra acts of worship such as Qiyaam al-Layl or fasting during the day, or rejoicing and celebrating.
Some celebrations are accompanied by haraam things such as mixing of men and women, singing and music, all of which are not permitted on the two 3E3ds which are prescribed in Islaam, let alone innovated celebrations.
Add to that the fact that there is no proof that the Israa’ and Mi3raaj happened on this date [the date, the month & the year of Mi3raaj is not proved by authentic ahadeeth].
Even if it were proven, that is no excuse for holding celebrations on this date, because nothing of the kind has been reported from the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam or from his companions, may Allaah be pleased with them, or from any of the Salaf (early generations) of this Ummah. If it were a good thing, they would surely have done it before us.
4- Salaat Umm Dawood halfway through Rajab.
5- Specific du3aa’s which are recited during Rajab are all fabrications and innovations.
6- Visiting graves specifically in Rajab is bid3ah, because graves are to be visited at any time of the year.
7- Koonday- Distributing special type of breads: In the month of Rajab is that the people bake special types of breads and, after reciting some verses and prayers on them, distribute them among their friends and neighbors.
8- Fasting in Rajab:
There is no saheeh report from the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam or from the Sahaabah to indicate that there is any particular virtue in fasting during Rajab.
The fasting that is prescribed in Rajab is the same as that prescribed in other months, namely fasting on Mondays and Thursdays, and the three days of al-Beed, fasting alternate days.
3Umar radi Allaah 3Anhu used to forbid fasting in Rajab because it involved resemblance to the Jaahiliyyah. It was reported that Kharashah ibn al-Harr said: I saw 3Umar smacking the hands of those who fasted in Rajab until they reached out for food, and he was saying, This is a month which was venerated in the Jaahiliyyah. (6)
Imaam Ibn al-Qayyim said: the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam did not fast for three consecutive months (i.e., Rajab, Sha3baan and Ramadaan) as some people do, and he never fasted Rajab at all, nor did he encourage people to fast this month.
Al-Haafiz ibn Hajar said: “No saheeh hadeeth that may be used as evidence has been narrated concerning the virtues of the month of Rajab or fasting this month or fasting in any specific part of it, or observing Qiyaam al-Layl specifically during this month. Imaam Abu Ismaa3eel al-Harawi al-Haafiz has already stated this before me, and we have narrated this from others also.” (7)
In Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah states with regard to fasting specifically in Rajab, we do not know of any basis in Sharee3ah for doing that.
9- Frequent 3Umrah in Rajab:
There is no report from the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam – to suggest that there is any particular virtue in performing 3Umrah in the month of Rajab, or that it is encouraged. Rather it is proven that there is a particular virtue in performing 3Umrah in the month of Ramadaan, and in the months of Hajj, which are Shawwaal, Dhul-Qa3dah and Dhu’l-Hijjah.
There is no report to prove that the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam performed 3Umrah in Rajab, rather that was denied by 3Aayeshah radi Allaah 3Anha, who said:” The Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam never performed 3Umrah in Rajab” (8)
Shaykh Muhammad ibn Ibraaheem (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in his Fataawaa:
“As for singling out some of the days of Rajab for any kind of good deed, ziyaarah (visiting the House of Allaah, the Ka3bah) or anything else, there is no basis for this, because Imaam Abu Shaamah stated in his book al-Bid3a wa’l-Hawaadith: specifying acts of worship at times that were not specified by sharee3ah is wrong; no time is to be regarded as better than any other except in cases where the sharee3ah gave preference to a certain act of worship at a certain time, or stated that any good deed done at this time is better than good deeds done at other times. Hence the scholars denounced the practice of singling out the month of Rajab for doing 3Umrah frequently.”
But if a person goes for 3Umrah during Rajab without believing that this has any particular virtue and because it is just a coincidence that it is easier for him to go at this time, then there is nothing wrong with that.
We ask Allaah to protect us from all innovations, and make us amongst those who correctly follow the Sunnah of Allaah’s Messenger sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam, and venerate those things that Allaah has made sacred in the way that He has prescribed.
Summarized from the Booklet “The Month of Rajab” by Shaykh Salih Munajjid & Ahya site
Rajab & Innovations ماہ رجب كےمتعلق ( in Urdu)
Fasting In Rajab
====================================================References: (1) soorah At-Tawbah, v: 36 (2) Soorah al-Maa’idah, v:2 (3) soorah al-Maa’idah, v:3 (4) Agreed Upon (5) Saheeh Muslim (6) al-Irwaa’, 957; Shaykh Al-baanee said: it is saheeh (7) In book تبين العجب بما ورد في فضل رجب Tabayyun al-3Ajab bimaa wurida fi Fadl Rajab (8) Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 1776; Muslim, 1255