Fasting in the month of Shawwal
Shawwal is the 10th month in Islamic Calendar and this month comes right after the Holy month of Ramadan. Shawwal is important for Muslims because Muslims celebrate Eid-ul-fitr on the 1st of Shawwal.
What is the meaning of Shawwal?
Shawwal comes out of the verb shāla (شَالَ) which literally means to 'lift or carry', generally to take or move things from one place to another. It has been said that this name is due to the fact of camel carrying a fetus at this time of year.
Fasting in the six days of Shawwal
Fasting in any 6 days of Shawwal is one of the Prophet Mohammad’s (P.B.U.H) Sunnah and Muslims perform deeds which have been performed by our beloved Prophet (P.B.U.H) in the love of Prophet (P.B.U.H). This is the reason of Muslims fasting in 6 days of Shawwal. To not follow this Sunnah won’t turn into any kind or sin but to follow this Sunnah would definitely lead to number of great rewards by the grace of Allah Almighty in this world and the world hereafter.
Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) promises forgiveness of past sins whoever fast during the whole month of Ramadan. After Ramadan, completing a six-day fast in the month of Shawwal is the same as fasting a whole year. As narrated by Abu Ayyub (R.A.), Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) said:
"Whoever fasts Ramadan, then follows it with six from Shawwal, then that is (equal in reward) to fasting every day." (Tirmidhi 759)
Thus, the above hadith says that fasting 6 days in the month of Ramadan would reward a Muslim as that Muslim has fasted the whole month. This reward is on the basis of only one condition that Muslim should have been completed the fasting the whole month of Ramadan because fasting in Ramadan is fard and it should be the first priority for Muslims.
Fasting in the month of Shawwal is the opportunity to show love towards Prophet (P.B.U.H)
Fasting in the month of shawwal for 6 days is the sunnah of our beloved Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H) and following Sunnah is the best way to show the love for our Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H).
As Narrated by Anas bin Malik,
"The Messenger of Allah (S.A.W) said to me: 'Whoever revives my Sunnah then he has loved me. And whoever loved me, he shall be with me in Paradise.'" (Tirmidhi 2678)
Opportunity to show Love for Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H)
Thus, following the Sunnah of Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H) is not only the opportunity to show love for beloved Prophet (P.B.U.H) but following the Sunnah has also so many rewards by the grace of Almighty Allah. Allah loves His last Prophet (P.B.U.H) and thus whosoever do anything in love of Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H), Allah benefits that person in this world and in the eternal world.
Here is one of the most important things which needs attention that Muslims should be aware of that they will be benefited by Sunnah only if they have performed their obligations (fard) which have been assigned to them by Allah. Because obligations must always be the first priority and indeed Allah is the most merciful and beneficent.