Opinion Editorials, April 2004, To see today's opinion articles, click here: ww.aljazeerah.info




News Archive

Arab Cartoons

News Photo




Opinion Editorial

letters to the editor

Human Price of the Israeli Occupation of Palestine


Israeli daily aggression on the Palestinian people 

Media Watch

Mission and meaning of Al-Jazeerah

News Photo

Peace Activists


Book reviews

Public Announcements 

   Public Activities 

Women in News

Cities, localities, and tourist attractions




Aljazeerah Info Center needs your support

Readers are the only source of support for Al-Jazeerah

Send donations by Paypal or by check to: Al-Jazeerah Info Center, P.O. Box 724, Dalton, GA 30722-0724, USA.

More Supplication as We Go to Bed

Adil Salahi

Arab News, 4/4/04

The Prophet (peace be upon him) always impressed on his companions, and his followers in future generations, the need to end the day with some glorification of God, supplication to Him and other forms of mentioning His name and reading His words. The point is that sleep is often likened to death by the Prophet (peace be upon him). The similarity is also stated in verse 42 of Surah 39 in the Qur’an. In both situations, we lose consciousness of everything around us. God gathers our souls to Him, but he returns them to us if our life is continuing, while He holds with Him the souls of those whose death He has decreed.

Since we approach a case of death when we are about to sleep, the Prophet was keen to teach us to say supplications and prayers that would be of benefit to us. Al-Bara’ ibn Azib, a companion of the Prophet, said: “When the Prophet went to bed, he would lie on his right side and say: ‘My Lord, to You I turn my face, and to You I surrender my soul, and to You I turn for protection, in hope and fear of You. With You alone safety and refuge from Your anger is sought. I believe in Your book which You have bestowed from on high, and I believe in Your Prophet whom You have entrusted with a message.’ Whoever says this supplication and dies that night, he is sure to die holding to the true faith.” (Related by Al-Bukahri, Muslim, Abu Dawood and Al-Tirmidhi)

To use the Arabic wording we say: “Allahumma wajjahtu wajhi ilayk, wa aslamtu nafsi ilayk, wa alja’tu zahri ilayk, rahbatan wa raghbatan ilayk. La manja wa la malja minka illa ilayk. Amantu bikitaabika alladhi anzalt, wa binabiyyaka alladhi arsalt.”

This is a highly authentic Hadith, which is reported in different versions with some change in the order of its phrases. But the supplication it includes is one of the most expressive of self-surrender to God in all situations.

Hence the comment that if one dies after having said this supplication, he is deemed to have died as a believer in the true faith. Needless to say, nothing ensures forgiveness of sins and admission to heaven more than sound and pure faith. To say this supplication before going to sleep is one way of ensuring that one finishes the day holding to the right faith.

Indeed the Prophet used to say several prayers and supplications before going to bed. He may change and say some of them on certain days and other prayers on other days. But the central point in them all is the same: total self-surrender to God in all situations. Let us look at this supplication which Abu Hurayrah says that the Prophet used to say as he got into bed: “My Lord, the Lord of the heavens, the earth and everything, who causes the grain and the fruit-stone to split, and who revealed the Torah, the Gospel and the Qur’an! I seek refuge with You from the evil of everything you hold by the forelock. You are the First before whom there was none, and You are the Last after whom there will be none. You are the Outward above whom there is none, and You are the Inward under whom there is none. Repay my debts and relieve my poverty.” (Related by Al-Bukhari in Al-Adab Al-Mufrad, Muslim, Al-Tirmidhi, Abu Dawood, Al-Nassaie and Ibn Majah). To give the Arabic text: “Allahumma rabba al-samaawaat wal-ard, wa rabba kulli shay’, faaliq al-habbi wal-nawa, munzil al-Tawrah wal-Injeel wal-Qur’an! A’oozu bika min kulli dhee sharrin anta aakhidhun binasiyatih. Anta al-awwal falaysa qablaka shay, wa anta al-aakhiru falyasa ba’adaka shay, wa anta al-zaahiru falaysa fawqaka shay, wa anta al-baatinu falaysa doonaka shay. Iqdi anni al-dayn wa aghnini min al-faqr.”

As this Hadith is related in all six anthologies, it is highly authentic and very inspiring. Like other supplication by the Prophet, it starts with statements of God’s glory, stressing first that God is the Lord of the universe and all it contains. It then highlights an important aspect of creation, which is the splitting of grains, seeds and fruit-stones to bring from them new shoots and trees. It also mentions divine guidance to mankind throughout history, represented in the revelation of the three main books of His guidance, the Torah, the Gospel and the Qur’an. When all this has been acknowledged, the supplicant appeals to God the Creator of all and the provider of guidance for protection from the evil caused by anyone, re-stating that all are within God’s control. Again the Prophet stresses some of the most important attributes of God before requesting Him to help him with his debt and to relieve him from poverty.

Another Hadith explains why the Prophet was so keen to stress remembering and glorifying God before going to bed and first thing in the morning. Jabir reports: “When a man enters his home or goes to bed an angel and a devil come straight to him. The angel says to him: ‘Finish with something good,’ while the devil says: ‘Finish with something evil.’ If the man praises God and glorifies Him (the devil) is driven away and the angel stays to watch over him. When he wakes up an angel and a devil come quickly to him and say something similar. If he glorifies God and says: ‘Praise be to God who has returned my soul after it was gathered and has not caused it to die while asleep. Praise be to God who upholds the celestial bodies and the earth, lest they deviate. For if they should ever deviate, there is none that could uphold them after He will have ceased to do so.

He is ever-forbearing, much forgiving. Praise be to God who holds the celestial bodies, so that they may not fall upon the earth except by His leave. Most compassionate is God, and merciful to mankind.’ If he should die, he is a martyr, and if he lives and rises to pray, he prays in an excellent way.” (Related by Al-Bukhari in Al-Adab Al-Mufrad and Al-Nassaie).

Having discussed the other Hadiths and explained why the Prophet was keen to say such supplication in the morning and evening, and before going to bed, I think this Hadith does not need further explanation, except to say that if the one who says this supplication and dies during the night receives the reward of one who sacrifices his life for the cause of Islam. That is a rich reward, because martyrs are certain to be admitted to heaven.

We also need to mention the Arabic wording of the supplication which says: “Al-hamd lillah alladhi radda ilyya nafsi ba’da mawtiha, wa lam yumitha fi manaamiha. Al-hamd lillah alladhi yumsiku al-samaawaati wal-ard an tazoola, wa la’in zaalata in amsakahuma min ahadin min ba’dih. Innahoo kana haleeman ghafoora. Al-hamd lillah alladhi yumsiku al-samaa’ an taqa’a ala al-ard illa bi’idhnih. Innahoo kana haleeman ghafoora.”


Earth, a planet hungry for peace


The Israeli apartheid (security) wall around Palestinian population centers (Ran Cohen, pmc, 5/24/03).


The Israeli apartheid (security) wall around Palestinian population centers in the West Bank, like a Python. (Alquds,10/25/03).

Opinions expressed in various sections are the sole responsibility of their authors and they may not represent Al-Jazeerah's.