Tonight is Shabi Mairaj or night of Ascension of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him ) according to most authentic Narrations.
الاسراء والمعراج The night of Ascension
بِسۡمِ ٱللَّهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
In the Surah al-Isra (Surah 17 - also known as Bani Isra'il), it is mentioned:
سُبۡحَـٰنَ ٱلَّذِىٓ أَسۡرَىٰ بِعَبۡدِهِۦ لَيۡلاً۬ مِّنَ ٱلۡمَسۡجِدِ ٱلۡحَرَامِ إِلَى ٱلۡمَسۡجِدِ ٱلۡأَقۡصَا ٱلَّذِى بَـٰرَكۡنَا حَوۡلَهُ ۥ لِنُرِيَهُ ۥ مِنۡ ءَايَـٰتِنَآۚ إِنَّهُ ۥ هُوَ ٱلسَّمِيعُ ٱلۡبَصِيرُ
"Glory be to Him Who made His servant (Prophet Muhammad) to go on a night from the Sacred Mosque (Masjid al-Haram) to the Farthest Mosque (Masjid al-Aqsa) of which We have blessed the precincts, so that We may show to him some of Our signs; surely He is the Hearing, the Seeing." (Qur'an, 17:1)
Prophet (Sal Allaahu Alaihi Wassallam) was granted the Night Journey of al-Israa’ wal Mi’raaj,on the night of Rajab 27th, he was transported by angel Gibarael on a heavenly ride Buraq from Masjid al-Haraam to Masjid al-Aqsa and then onwards he ascended to the Heavens and Allaah spoke to him as He willed, and enjoined the five daily prayers upon him.
This is definitely part of our Aqeedah (belief). It says so in the Qur’aan [al-Isra':1]
The word Isra is referred to as "walking in night" and the root word of Miraj is Arooj which means; "going to a higher place". During this blessed night, Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) journeyed to sky level to meet Allah (Glorious is He), and for this particular reason in Islamic history this journey is recognized to be as "The night of Isra and Miraj".
Most accepted saying is that Miraj happened 1 year before Migrating to Madina, Similarly the most accepted saying is that this journey occurred on the night of 27th Rajab,
This journey consist of 3 stages:
1. FROM AL HARAM TO AL AQSA MOSQUE
2. FROM AL AQSA MOSQUE TO SIDRA TUL MUNTAHA
3. FROM SIDRA TUL MUNTAHA TO QAAB O QOSAIN
1. FROM AL HARAM TO AL AQSA MOSQUE:
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon Him) was taken miraculously from al Haram to Al Aqsa in Jerusalem where he led the prayers of all prophets and then ascended to heavens. It’s a long tale and most of our sisters must know about it. The incredible aspect is that all happened in a short period of time and the human mind cannot encompass its reality and grandeur. The ride which was used by Prophet (SAW) was Burraq , which might have travelled much faster than the speed of light or It may be as the time was stopped by the orders of Alah swt . It’s all part of our belief in the unseen ( Iman Bilghaib) and trust in the words of Prophet (SAW). When Prophet (SAW) told his companions that he has visited heavens, hell and paradise, met and talked to Prophets and went quite close to Allah swt.
2. Some of this miraculous journey is described in surah Al Najam.
I am just giving a few Narrations about the last part.
The 3rd stage of the journey commenced.
3-FROM SIDRA TUL MUNTAHA TO QAAB O QOSAIN
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon Him) informed us that when the journey beyond Sidra tul Muntaha started, Jabreel (as) stopped at a place. He asked him why he stopped. He replied "If i will go beyond this place even as the distance of an ant, my wings will burn."
Al Yawakeet wal Jawahir (3:34)
According to another saying he said "Now it’s up to you and your Lord (Allah). This is my limit and i can’t go beyond this."
(53:7): "And he (Muhammad [blessings and peace be upon him]) was on the uppermost horizon (of the realm of creation during the Ascension Night i.e., on the apex of the created cosmos)."
Then he got closer in Al Najam, Quran it is said (53:8,9):
"Then He (the Lord of Honor) drew closer (to His Beloved Muhammad [blessings and peace be upon him]) and then drew even closer. Then a distance measuring only two bow-lengths was left (between Allah Unveiled and His Esteemed Beloved), or even less than that (in extreme nearness)."
At that place Allah revealed to his beloved Prophet, whatever he wanted to reveal, in Quran it is only mentioned as
(53:10): So (on that station of nearness) He (Allah) revealed to His (Beloved) servant whatever He revealed.
And Prophet Muhammad didn't say the details of that conversation either. Only few things about that are known;
Allah Said "O Prophet! Peace be upon You and mercy and blessings of Allah"
Prophet Muhammad Replied "Peace be upon Me and on righteous people of Allah"
Meeraj Al-Naboowa (3:149)
"Allah appeared to me in a very beautiful form. That moment we heard angels of skies were talking on some matter. Allah said "O Muhammad". I said " Here I am, O Allah, at Your service; here I am at Your service". Allah asked "what angles are talking about?". I said "O Allah! i don't know."
So Allah placed his hand between my shoulders and i felt its coolness in my chest. And then every thing was revealed to me." (Jamia Turmadi) This dialogue is التحیاتwhich we recite in Quda in Salaah.
Our Salaah or Five prayers a day is the gift of Mairaj which Allah (swt) made obligatory for Muslims. Those were earlier 50 prayers a day but on Prophet (SAW)’s request to Allah were reduced to five. The reward would be given as 50 prayers.
on the same night of his journey, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) returned to Makkah.
As he was a known person of Truthfulness before Prophet Hood, everyone knew that his statements are always true.
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) announced to his people from the roof of Kaaba about the wondrous night. He considered it his responsibility before God to convey the message, no matter the response or consequences;
The Prophet of Allah began to describe his journey, Allah brought forward all the details in front of his eyes. and he described what he had seen “stone by stone, brick by brick”.. (Saheeh Bukhari)
The Sweetness of Faith To those whose faith was strong and true, the Power of Allah was obvious. Abo Jahal who found the whole story difficult to believe went to see Abu Bakr, the best friend and loyal supporter of Prophet Mohammad. He asked him if he believed Prophet Muhammad traveled overnight to Jerusalem, to heavens and back to Makkah. Without hesitation Abu Bakr replied, “If the messenger of Allah said so, then it is true”. It was because of this occasion that Abu Bakr earned the title As-Siddeeq (the foremost believer).
The journey by night, from the Holy Mosque in Makkah to the furthest Mosque in Jerusalem, and the ascension through the heavens and into the presence of Almighty Allah was a miracle granted by Allah to His final slave and Prophet, Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of Allah be upon him, and one of the greatest of honors bestowed upon any human.
On that night the Muslim Ummah was bestowed upon the leader ship on all religions and Prophet (SAW) was grant leader ship over all the prophets.
This miraculous night is a special gift for Muslim Ummah.
However there are no prescribed prayers, worship, fasting or celebrations related to that particular night in the practice of Prophet (SAW) or the companions RA.
We as a Muslim praying five times a day are everyday grateful for this gift brought for us by Prophet (SAW) in the night of Ascension
ال اسراء والمعراج