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CHAPTER ON THE SLEEPING OF SAYYIDINA RASULULLAH SALLA LAHU ALAYHI WA’ALE HI WASALLAM 

Hazrat Sheikh-ul Hadeeth Maulana Muhammad Zakariyya Kandhelwi (R.A.) explains; 

In this chapter is mentioned how Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam slept, and what he recited before retiring for sleep etc.  

Six ahaadith have been compiled in this chapter.   


(242) Hadith Number 1.

Hasrat Baraa Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports: "When Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam retired, he put his blessed right hand under his blessed right cheek, and recited this du'aa:

Rabbi qini adhaa-baka yauma tub-a-thu 'ibaadaka

Translation. 'O Allah, save me from Your punishment on the day of qiyaamah", 
  

Commentary

It is stated in the Hisn Haseen that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam recited this du'aa thrice. This has also been reported by Hasrat 'Abdullah bin Mas'ud Radiyallahu 'Anhu in a narration. We find that this was the general practice of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam, which many Sahaabah Radiyallahu 'Anhum had witnessed. Although Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam was sinless, he recited these types of.du'aas (supplications) to express his humbleness and bondmanship. Subhan-Allah. It is proper that a devoted worshipper asks only his creator, or this was done simply to educate the Ummah - nation. It is clear, from this hadith that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam slept on his right side. This was his noble practice. Therefore it is mustahab – preferable to sleep on the right side. A special benefit may be derived from this. The heart is on the left side of the chest, and by sleeping on the right side, the heart remains on the top side. One will not have a deep sleep, but will sleep lightly. If one sleeps on the left side, the heart will be at the bottom, which will result in a deep slumber. Some physicians have for this reason said, that it is good to sleep on the left side, because if one has a deep sleep, the food will digest better. This is a fact. However there is a harm too, which has not be taken into consideration. If the heart is at the bottom, the weight of the whole body will be on it and this will affect it. The heart is one of the main organs of the body. Putting a little pressure on it may cause many diseases. Therefore, medically speaking, if it is good to sleep on the left, then too it is detrimental, from which one should at all times take precaution. In this respect, from the medical point of view it is important to sleep on the right side. Besides, sleeping on the right side reminds one of the grave. We have been commanded to remember death regularly. Many worldly and religious benefits are derived by constantly remembering death. One should constantly remember the breaker of all pleasures. The fact is this, how can one forget a thing that every being will experience which is sure to come and it is not known when it shall take place? 


(243) Hadith Number 2.

Hasrat Hudhayfah Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "When Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam lay down on a bed, he recited:

Allahumma bi-ith-mika a-mutu wa ahyaa

Translation: O Allah! In Thy name do I live and die'.
 When he awakened he recited this du'aa:

Alhamdulillaahil ladhi ahyaanaa ba'da rnaa amaatana wa-ilayhin nushur

Translation: 'Praise be to Allah Who restored unto us life, having caused us to die and unto Him shall be the Resurrection"'. 
 


Commentary

Sleep is synonymous with death. This is why sleep has been linked to death, and waking with life. For this reason too one should sleep on the right side, as sleeping is an example of death. As sleep is likened to death, and waking up is becoming alive again. The 'ulama have written, it is a thing that should be pondered upon, that, after dying in this manner on the day of qiyaamah one will be given life again. In reality Allah 'Ta'aala has made this world a little replica of the Hereafter. An example of everything has been made in this world, so that one may ponder and take heed of things to come. The life in this world is not more than a dream. A person is happy, affluent, possessing all types of luxuries and does not experience any sort of trouble. If this person sees in a dream that he is being taken to jail and flogged, and is experiencing all types of calamities, not realising that it is a dream, he is distressed, and crying too. Suddenly the eyes open and all the tranquillity and happiness returns. The troubles of this dream does not remain nor are its effects felt. In the same manner, this is the state of a pious person. All the difficulties that are experienced in this world, are like a dream. After opening the eyes, when all the happiness is experienced, what effect shall the dream have? Now imagine the opposite? If one is experiencing luxuries in a dream, but upon awakening one finds oneself in jail with all its punishments, what taste shall remain of a sweet dream? If a detainee that is sentenced to hard labour, sees in a dream that he has become king of the worlds, but after awakening finds himself chained in the dark dungeons, of what benefit will this kingmanship be to him? The Sahaabah Radiyallahu 'Anhum understood this, they patiently endured all hardships, remembering that this life is but like a dream. May the Almighty Allah through His Infinite Mercy also grant us this valuable treasure. His Mercy is widespread. Ameen


(244) Hadith Number 3.

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha narrates: "Every night before Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam slept on his blessed bed, he put together his blessed hands (as in the du'aa) and blew on it and recited (the Surahs of) AI-Ikhlaas (Qul huwallahu Ahad), AI-Falaq (Qul a'udhu birabbil falaq), and An-Naas (Qui a'udhu birabbin naas) and wiped those parts of the blessed body that he could (wherever the hand could reach). He began with the head, then the face and then the front part of his blessed body. This was done thrice".   


Commentary

The ahaadith state that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam recited different du'aas before he went to bed. He also recited different Surahs and Aayaat of the Noble Qur-aan. It is reported from Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam that if one recites a portion of the Noble Qur-aan before sleeping, an angel is appointed to protect one till one awakens. From the above hadith, it is found that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam himself recited the three Surahs mentioned. Besides these, it has been narrated that he recited the musabbihaat. i.e. those surahs that begin with Sabbaha, Yusabbihu, Subhaana etc. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam also regularly recited the Surahs of (Alif Laam) Sajdah and Surah Mulk (Tabaarak). The ahaadith state that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam also recited the Aayatul Kursi (2,255) and the last two Aayahs of Suratul Baqarah. A Sahaabi (Ra) reports that, Sayidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam advised him to recite Suratul Kaafirun (Qul yaa ayyuhal kaafirun) before retiring to bed. Besides these, other du'aas have been narrated that were read by Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam before sleeping. -Fathul Baari. 
  


(245) Hadith Number 4.

Hasrat Ibn 'Abbaas Radiyallahu 'Anhu reports: "Once Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam slept and began snoring. It was the blessed nature of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam that he snored, when he slept. Hasrat Bilaal Radiyallahu 'Anhu gave the call to prepare for salaah. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam awakened and performed the salaah. He did not perform the wudu". This hadith has a detailed incident. 

Commentary

It is a peculiarity of the Ambiyaa – Prophets (As) that their wudu does not become invalid by sleeping. For this reason Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam did not perform wudu. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam informed us of the reason. When the Ambiyaa (As) sleep, their hearts and minds do not sleep, only their eyes sleep. The dreams of the Ambiyaa (AS) are also Divine Revelations. They are protected from the influence of the shaytaan - devil. The incident that Imaam Tirmidhi (Rh) refers to took place at the house of the aunt of Sayyidina ibn 'Abbaas Radiyallahu 'Anhu. It will be discussed in the fifth hadith of the ensuing chapter. The subject was not relevant to this chapter, therefore the author omitted it here. 


 
(246) Hadith Number 5.

Hasrat Anas bin Maalik Radiyallahu'Anhu says: "When Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam went to bed, he recited this du'aa:
Alhamdulillaahil ladhi at'a-manaa wa-saqaanaa wa-kafaanaa wa-aa-waa-naa-fa-kam mim-mal laa kaafiya lahu wa-laa mu-wiya

Translation: 'Praise be to Allah Who gave us food and drink, provided us sufficiently, and gave us (a place for) shelter! How many there are who have neither a provider nor a shelterer!"' 
  


Commentary

The law of Allah is that when one leaves one's work to Allah, Allah Ta'aala also takes care and fulfils one's work through an unknown source.
 And whosoever put his trust in Allah, He will suffice him.  Surah Talaq, 3.  
This is certainly completed on Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam. Therefore the sufficing is of a complete nature. Thereafter, the more one relies and has trust in Allah, so much more does Allah fulfill one's needs. This has been mentioned in many Ahaadith under different headings.

It is reported in a hadith: 'To whom poverty reaches and that person asks the people for rescue from starvation, then the persons needs are not fulfilled. If one puts forward one's request to Allah Ta'aala, then soon in someway or the other, that need is fulfilled'. 
 

In another hadith it is reported that Allah Ta'aala says: "O son of man. If you free yourself (from all things) for the sake of My worship. I will fulfil your needs and fill you with richness (from all wants). Otherwise I will fill your hearts with problems and I will not let your needs be fulfilled".  

Those who wait for their material needs to be fulfilled, so that they can spend their time for religious activities, should take heed from this. The only way to fulfil religious needs is to make oneself free from material needs, and concentrate on the path of Allah (swt).  The du'aa of the above hadith has been mentioned by Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam so that one may be reminded to express gratitude to Allah (swt). It is important that everyone thank Allah (swt) according to one's capacity. The more one thanks Allah (swt), the more one receives of His blessings. Allah Ta'aala says in the Qur-aan: "If ye give thanks, 1 will give you more;.." - Surah Ebrahim, 7.

Allah Ta'aala has also commanded that one should remember those who are less fortunate, so that thanks may emit from the heart. How many people are there in the world who have no food and are starving? They do not have someone to aid them in their difficulties. How great is Allah Ta'aala's Mercy, that He has bestowed upon us such great bounties. Al Hamda lillah. Praise be to Allah (swt)


(247) Hadith Number 6.

Hasrat Abu Qataadah Radiyallahu 'Anhu relates: "If Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasallam made an early joumey-break in the last portion of the night on his travels, he slept on his blessed right side. If he was staying there till before the morning, he lifted his right arm, put his head on it and slept".  

Commentary

The reason being that if there was more time he lay flat and slept. His noble habit was to sleep on the right side. But if time was short, he lifted his arm and slept on it for a little while. In such circumstances he did not lie flat and sleep, as this might result in a deep slumber, and the time for the Salaah - prayer may pass.
 

Studying Ash-Shaam-il  

The sleeping of Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam)   

The Right Way 

Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) had the noble habit of sleeping on the right hand side, facing the Qiblah.  Preference is to sleep on the right side.

We need to avoid deep sleep as we need to wake up for Fajr salah. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam used a piece of cloth folded twice to place under his blessed head while sleeping.

The Sunnah is to read Surahs from Al Qur’an and wipe our face and body before sleeping.

Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam divided the night into six parts, in the first part would sleep on the right side. In the last part, would lift his head and place forearm underneath. This is to avoid sleeping too long. 
 The heart is on the left hand side, therefore we get exhausted if sleeping on this side.

To sleep on the back is the way of kings and to sleep on your chest, face and belly is way of Jahannam – hell.
  

When Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam sleeps, his wudu stays. This is not the case for others. When normal people sleep, you may pass wind, this is why upon waking, wudu is required. Sleep itself does not break the wudu. However Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam does not pass wind, because when the beloved Messenger salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam slept, he was in the company of Allah swt.   


The blessing of Comfort 

Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam, says that ‘He who sleeps secure in his home, fit in body, enough food for tonight has the whole world’. This is why we should be thankful and remember needy people.