11 Virtues of Mondays that Muslims Need to Know
By Yasrab Shah
Unfortunately, many of us have been brought up not liking Mondays.
In the UK and many other countries, Monday is the end of the weekend and the first day of the work week, signifying the end of our ‘free time’ and going ‘back to the grind’. We have therefore been raised on a ‘universal’ dislike of Mondays in popular culture, with songs like ‘I don’t like Mondays’, and cartoon characters like Garfield professing, ‘I hate Mondays’. It has become normal for us to talk about the ‘Monday morning blues’ and participate in this culture.
As Muslims, our perspective on time is not defined by the working week or the Gregorian calendar. Rather, we follow a lunar calendar, containing certain days which are blessed with the winds of Allah’s mercy. And in Islam, Monday is a tremendously honoured day, chosen by Allah for significant events.
In this article, we will discuss these divine connections with Monday, including momentous occasions in the life of the Prophet Muhammad (saw) which took place on Mondays.
Let’s start with four events which reveal realities from the unseen realm of Allah’s creation:
1) Allah (swt) created trees on a Monday
The following hadith gives us an extraordinary account of the sequence and order of Allah’s creation on the various days of the week:
On the authority of Abu Hurairah (ra) who said, ’The Messenger of Allah (saw) took my hand and then said, ”Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, created clay on Saturday and He created in them mountains on Sunday. And He created trees on Monday, and He created the things entailing labour on Tuesday. And He created light on Wednesday, and He caused the animals to spread on Thursday. And He created Adam (as) after ‘Asr on Friday – the last creation at the last hour of the hours of Friday, i.e. between the late afternoon and the night”’. [Muslim]
Trees are the longest-living creatures on Earth and they are vital to the life and welfare of the planet. They give us oxygen, remove pollutants from the air, and store carbon, making them especially important in the era of global warming. They also stabilise the soil and give life to the world’s wildlife, hosting complex ecosystems of birds, insects, fungi and more.
For millennia, trees have also provided us with the materials for tools and shelter. We’ve used them as flood defences and garden ornaments, as shade in summer and firewood in winter, to build our homes and create paper for our books. Trees even clean our air and improve our mental health!
This incredible creation is a beautiful blessing and an essential part of our lives – and it was given to us on a Monday.
2) The Gates of Paradise are flung open on Monday
It is well-known that the gates of Paradise are flung open when Ramadan begins. But did you know that they are also opened every single Monday and Thursday?
Monday is given such incredible importance in the heavens; it is only right that we give it equal importance here on Earth. We could fast on Mondays (as is Sunnah), increase our voluntary prayers, perform a simple charity like smiling or planting a tree, or simply take the time to reflect on our love for Allah and the ways He has blessed us.
3) Muslims are forgiven on Monday
We now discover that Mondays and Thursdays are incredible opportunities to have our sins forgiven:
On the authority of Abu Hurairah (ra) that the Prophet (saw) used to fast on Mondays and Thursdays. It was said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, you surely fast on Mondays and Thursdays’. He [saw] said, ’Indeed, on Mondays and Thursdays Allah forgives every Muslim except two who have abandoned one another, saying, “Leave them both until they reconcile”’. [Ibn Majah]
Imagine missing out on Allah’s forgiveness because you and a fellow Muslim refuse to forgive each other for a worldly slight. It is unthinkable! This Monday, take the time to reconcile your differences and resolve any ongoing conflicts you have. Reach out to your brothers/sisters for a conversation, seek forgiveness and be forgiving, and make sure you start the week with a clean slate.
Don’t miss out on the chance to gain Allah’s forgiveness on Monday!
4) Deeds are presented to Allah on Monday
As has been seen in the previous two ahadith, the gates of Paradise are opened on Mondays and Thursdays, and Allah also forgives Muslims on these days. Moreover, the Prophet (saw) was observed fasting on these two days – an act he (saw) described as having ‘nothing equal to it’. [Nasa’i]
The reason for this is because our deeds are presented and accounted for by Allah on Monday and Thursday:
The above hadith refers to the divine system of accountability:
- On a daily basis, our deeds are presented ’at the dawn (Fajr) and late afternoon (‘Asr) prayers’. [Muslim]
- On a weekly basis, they are presented on Monday and Thursday, as mentioned before.
- On an annual basis, they are presented in the eighth lunar month of Sha‘ban, ‘a month in which actions are raised to the Lord of the worlds’. [Nasa’i]
To summarise what we’ve covered so far: on Monday, Allah created trees, and every Monday, the gates of Paradise are opened, Allah forgives many Muslims, and our deeds are presented to Him.
Now, let’s turn our attention to seven momentous events from the life of the beloved Messenger of Allah (saw), all of which took place on a Monday. In chronological order:
5) The Prophet (saw) was born on Monday
The dominant opinion is that the Prophet (saw) was born on 12th Rabi’ al-Awwal in the Year of the Elephant. The following hadith also proves that it was a Monday:
It is noteworthy that, out of all the days in the week, Allah chose Mondays for the blessing of sending us His final Messenger (saw). Naturally, the Prophet (saw) also singled Mondays out: in his immense gratitude to his Creator for sending him to creation, the Prophet (saw) used to mark Mondays by fasting.
6) He (saw) raised the Black Stone to the Ka‘bah on Monday
This incident took place before the Qur’an was revealed.
When the Messenger of Allah (saw) was approximately 35 years old, the Ka‘bah was badly weakened by flooding and needed rebuilding. Once the Quraish had rebuilt it using the Halal income that they had at their disposal, they nearly came to blows over who should have the honour of replacing the blessed Black Stone in the corner of the Ka‘bah.
The Quraish consulted amongst each other and agreed that the next person to enter the sacred Haram would decide what to do. They were delighted to see this was the Prophet Muhammad (saw), who was also called Al-Amin, meaning the Trustworthy.
He (saw) placed his upper garment (rida’) on the ground and had the Black Stone placed in the middle. Thus, all the various tribes could carry the Black Stone by holding onto the garment. The Prophet (saw) then placed the Black Stone in the corner with his blessed hands.
This famous historic event took place on a Monday:
7) He (saw) received revelation on a Monday
Earlier, we mentioned the following hadith:
The Messenger of Allah (saw) was asked about fasting on Mondays, whereupon he said, ’On it, I was born, and on it, revelation was sent down to me’. [Muslim]
When the Prophet (saw) was 40 years old, he was sent the first verses of the Noble Qur’an, in the Cave of Hira on the Mountain of Light outside Makkah.
The night of the first revelation is known as the Night of Power (Laylat al-Qadr). According to the dominant opinion, this night is in the last ten nights of Ramadan.
Millions of Muslims around the world give immense importance to the last ten nights of Ramadan – and rightly so. The Night of Power is worth a thousand months of worship, after all! But it is also important and rewardable for us to acknowledge that the Qur’an was revealed on a Monday, and give Mondays their proper status.
After all, the Prophet (saw) used to fast on Mondays, thus acknowledging their significance.
Instead of thinking of Mondays as ‘back to the grind’ and dreading the ‘Monday morning blues’, why not re-frame Monday as the day on which you take the time to connect with the Qur’an?
You could memorise Qur’an during your lunch break, listen to Qur’an on your commute, or read its tafseer in the evenings. Monday could be the day you remember Allah’s favour in guiding you to His Light, as you read His Words and seek their beautiful meanings.
8) The Ascension (Mi‘raj) took place on a Monday
When the Prophet (saw) was around 52 years old, he faced the Year of Sorrow, during which he (saw) lost his beloved wife Khadijah (ra), and his uncle Abu Talib, who was his protector and ally.
During this immensely difficult time, the Prophet (saw) was taken on a beautiful and meaningful journey, known as Al-Isra Wal-Mi’raj, or The Night Journey and Ascension. During this journey, he (saw) not only met the previous prophets (as) and led them and the angels in prayer in Masjid Al-Aqsa, he also ascended into the Presence of Allah.
The strongest opinion is that this event took place on 27th Rajab. The following hadith reveals it was on a Monday:
On the authority of Jabir ibn ’Abdullah al-Ansari (ra) and ’Abdullah ibn ’Abbas (ra), who both said, ‘The Messenger of Allah (saw) was born in the Year of the Elephant, on Monday the twelfth of the month of Rabi‘ al-Awwal. On it (Monday) he received revelation, on it he was ascended to the sky, on it he migrated and on it he (saw) passed away’. [Al-Husain ibn Ibrahim al-Jawraqani]
9) The Prophet’s (saw) Hijrah began on a Monday
The Prophet (saw) was given permission to leave his beloved city of Makkah on a Monday, in order to migrate to Madinah. This migration is known as the Hijrah.
On the authority of Ibn ’Abbas (ra) who said, ‘He [saw] migrated from Makkah to al-Madinah on a Monday…’ [Ahmad]
The Prophet (saw) was nearly 53 years old at that point and he had spent most of his life in Makkah. Upon leaving Makkah, the city of his luminous birth, he turned to address it:
The Hijrah also marks the beginning of the Islamic calendar – and this momentous event took place on a Monday!
10) The Prophet (saw) arrived in Madinah on a Monday
On the authority of Ibn ’Abbas (ra) who said, ’The Prophet (saw) was born on a Monday, received revelation on a Monday, he migrated from Makkah to al-Madinah on a Monday, he arrived in al-Madinah on a Monday and raised the (Black) Stone on a Monday’. [Ahmad]
The Prophet (saw) arrived in Madinah on 12th Rabi al-Awwal, aged exactly 53 years old, on a Monday. He (saw) was to spend most of the next 10 years of his life in Madinah, where he eventually passed away.
The city was originally named ‘Yathrib’, but was re-named Madinah al-Munawarah, or the Illuminated City. For when the Prophet (saw) arrived, this city and this community truly became illuminated:
11) The Prophet (saw) passed away on Monday
Exactly 10 lunar years after arriving into Madinah, the Messenger of Allah (saw) passed away on the lap of his beloved wife ’Aishah (ra) in her house. It was a Monday.
The Companions (ra) described this last devastating and heart-wrenching day:
On the authority of Az-Zuhri (ra) that Anas ibn Malik al-Ansari (ra) (who served and accompanied the Prophet (saw)), informed me:
’That Abu Bakr [ra] used to lead the people in prayer during the fatal illness of the Prophet (saw), until it was Monday. When the people aligned in rows for the prayer, the Prophet (saw) lifted the curtain of his house and started looking at us whilst he was standing. His face was (glittering) like a page of the Qur’an and he smiled cheerfully. We were about to be put to trial for the pleasure of seeing the Prophet (saw). Abu Bakr [ra] retreated to join the row as he thought that the Prophet (saw) would lead the prayer. The Prophet (saw) beckoned us to complete the prayer and he let the curtain fall. On the same day he passed away’. [Bukhari]
Far from hating Mondays, we pray that we have a newfound love, reverence and respect for Mondays. A practical way to give Mondays their due status is to increase our good deeds on Mondays!
As we have mentioned a few times, it is Sunnah to fast on Mondays. The scholars always advise that, on the days when it is Sunnah to fast, it is also recommended to increase our other good deeds, such as voluntary prayers, remembrance of Allah (dhikr), seeking forgiveness (istighfar) and charity.
We pray that Allah (swt) grants us the ability to expose ourselves to His winds of mercy (Nafahat) on the blessed day of Monday, ameen!
We hope this article was helpful to you! Do share it with friends and family, as the Prophet (saw) said, ‘Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a reward like one who did it’. [Muslim]