Shab E Barat – Night of Forgiveness
In month of Shaban, Shab-E-Barat is celebrated with pomp and enthusiasm by Muslims all over the world. On the night of Shab-E-Barat Allah writes the destinies of all men for the coming year by taking into account the deeds committed by them in the past.
The festival is celebrated held either on the thirteenth or on the fourteenth day of Shaban, the eighth month of the Muslim year. This happens to be fifteen days before the beginning of Holy Month of Ramadan.
Shab-E-Barat means the night of forgiveness or Day of Atonement. People pray to Allah both in preparation for Ramadan and for the forgiveness of the sins committed by them. The festival is also known as Boraks Nigh.
In Persian language, ‘Shab’ means night and ‘Barat’ means ‘the night of commission or assignment’.
In Arabic language, however, the day is known as Lailatul Bara’at, meaning the night of emancipation.
Some though see Shab-E-Barat as the night of good fortune and a popular legend says that on this night the Prophet visits each house and relieves the pains of suffering humanity.
The night of Shab-E-Barat also commemorates the entry of Prophet Muhammad pbuh into the city of Mecca. However, Shia Muslims associate this night with the birth of their last Imam.
Skies light up on the night of Shab-E-Barat as the festival is celebrated in the night. Houses and streets are are also illuminated by candles and strands of electric bulbs to provide a joyful ambiance to the festival.
Colourful fire works keep dazzling the skies as the Muslims stay awake on the night of Shab-E-Barat. This is due to a belief that Allah writes the destinies of all living beings for the coming years in heavens during the night.
It may be noted that there is no mention of Shab-E-Barat in the Holy Quran. However, Sura Dukhan does mentions about Laila Mubaraka, which, according to the learned scholars of the Holy Quran and the Hadith, is Shab-E-Barat.