The Week

There is a growing trend nowadays amongst Muslims, who in their earnestness to follow the lunar calendar, deny the existence of the seven-day week. Some happen to agree on the seven-day week, but they add that it resets with the new moon. They all argue that the week, as we know it today, has no precedent in Islam and that it simply does not exist. They say that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam counted the days as the first day, second day, third day and so on up to the twenty-ninth day and then either the first day of the new month commences, or the thirtieth day of the same month is completed to pass through the day of doubt. They claim that the first salat al-jumu’ah of every lunar month is the sixth day of the month. Amongst the various theories is also one that the month is divided into three parts of ten each and these three parts contain a salat al-jumu’ah in each. Whatever is the theory that has been proposed by any one of these groups to replace the seven-day week that runs on its own course, all of them agree and argue against the existence of a seven-day week that runs on its own course separately from the lunar month. I have followed some of their arguments in proposing a substitute for the seven-day week out of curiosity to see what they have come up with, but to keep the discussion short and meaningful, we need not listen to the replacement theories, we need only to proof that there existed a seven-day week at the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam which ran in a cycle separate from the cycle of the lunar month. The proof of course should come from the Qur’ān and the sunnah.

Nevertheless, we can sometimes begin with empirical evidence. Perhaps the strongest proof present in our world today that there existed in the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam a seven day-week is a physical and historical proof. Since the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, this seven-day cycle has continued to run uninterruptedly until our day today, despite all the effort of other communities of world significance to change that seven-day cycle into a cycle consisting of a different number of days – sometimes three, sometimes five, sometimes ten, etc. That physical and historical proof is Masjid al-Nabawiy in Madīnah, Masjid al-Harām in Makkah and Masjid Qubā in Madīnah. We may add other masājid to this, perhaps Masjid al-Quds in Jerusalem and all other mosques that the companions of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam built and/or witnessed, but these three are enough for our discussion here.

The salāt al-Jumu’ah has been conducted in the premises of these physical structures ever since the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam established the congregational prayer under Divine command for about 1445 Hijri years until today, without any break in the cycle, every seven days, and it is indispensable to note that this tradition is not related to any sign in the sky. The day of al-Jumu’ah in which this obligatory salat has been conducted till today has never been defined in astronomical terms nor was the ritual commenced at the very beginning under Prophetic instruction based on astronomical signs. The prayer of the two eclipses, for example, are based on such astronomical signs in the sky but not the salat-Jumu’ah.

Anyone who argues, as it is becoming a trend nowadays, that this seven-day cycle was an innovation introduced by perhaps rulers and those who held authority or by perhaps anyone else, and that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam looked for an astronomical sign to determine the yaum al-Jumu’ah ought to proof:

1.     That there has indeed been a break in the seven-day cycle after the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, and consequently, the person is under the obligation to proof when did this break occur in history and who broke the cycle. He will have a hard time because hundreds of thousands of Muslims throughout history, and in our times, millions of Muslims, bear witness while constantly going to Makkah and Madinah for the ‘Umrah, the Hajj and to visit the Prophet’s grave and mosque, that the salat al-Jumu’ah has never been postponed or abandoned. In fact, if I count the elderly people of knowledge I have met, they bear witness to the fact that this cycle was not broken in their lifetime. Hence the evidence that must be presented to prove this physical and historical cycle wrong, must come from before a hundred years simply because in our lifetime, I have seen men in whose lifetime no such break has occurred.

2.     How this seven-day cycle was introduced in Makkah and Madinah and then imposed upon the rest of the Muslim world.

If a person cannot prove that, then it is more reasonable to accept the empirical evidence presented here and then proceed to the Qur’ān and the sunnah to try and understand why and how there exists a seven-day cycle that runs on its own course and has continued uninterruptedly from the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam till it has reached us today and we carry on to adhere to that seven-day cycle as a separate cycle from the lunar month of the Islamic tradition.

However, if a person can prove that, then he can attempt to refute what follows hereafter.

Now we can turn to the Qur’ān and the sunnah.

First of all, Allah, Most High, mentioned in the Qur’ān that He created the samāwāt and the earth in six days and then istawā ‘alal ‘arsh, yudabbirul amra. We will not enter into the translation of the phrase istawā ‘alal ‘arsh, perhaps it is for another occasion. However, that phrase indicates that the meaning is related to what follows – yudabbirul amra. We may say the two phrases refer to the completing day (the seventh) when all of creation started functioning according to what they were created for. The seventh day is when everything was set in motion and Allah knows best. Since that time, the Prophets, Nabi Ādam alayhissalām onwards, carried on a cycle of day and night, in commemoration of the seven days of creation. When the law of the Sabbath was revealed, now making a ritual obligatory upon Banī Isrā-īl to stop working and earning on the seventh day, the cycle was further established with a Divine command of a ritual to refrain from work and to worship Him and gather. Then the Christians, after Nabi Īsā alayhissalam, chose the next day for their obligatory rituals and gatherings. This cycle of commemorating the process of creation and life is now uninterrupted for more than perhaps 3000 years. At the end came our Prophet Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam who established the salat al-Jumu’ah under Divine revelation as a ritual, and the day was one day before the Sabbath, and by this further cemented the continuation of the cycle.

Now, if a person chooses to refute this seven-day cycle, he will have to refute not only the empirical evidence present in the Muslim community, but also that which is present in the world Jewish and Christian communities. This is because it is established that the sequence of these three religious obligations occur one after another for three consecutive days. The days of al-Jumu’ah, as-Sabt and al-Ahad. He now has a greater task.

We cannot define the seven-day week in astronomical terms, that is to say, we cannot look for the signs of the beginning and end of this seven-day cycle in the sky. We can do that for the beginning and end of every lunar month but not for the week. They are two different cycles. There is no evidence in the Qur’ān or the sunnah that indicates we ought to join the two into one cycle and give the seven-day week an astronomical definition. It is because it cannot be astronomically defined, that we have to relate this to the Prophetic practices of the Jumu’ah and the Sabbath. There is no other relation we can find in the Qur’ān to this seven-day cycle except the six days of creation and the seventh day of istiwā ‘ala-‘arsh. The continuation of this seven-day cycle in this earthly dimension of space and time by the three religious communities of the world, especially the law of the Sabbath mentioned in the Qur’ān, is proof that this cycle is in commemoration of that process of creation. It is also proof that there is no astronomical origin and basis to this cycle.

This cycle has a very important implication for people of religion in ākhir az-zamān, and that is, this godless world, run by Gog and Magog, has sought to remove the lunar month from us, and they have been quite successful in that by imposing a pre-determined calendar in the same way they use a pre-determined calendar in their world of Technique, but even though they have sought to remove the seven-day week from us, they have failed miserably in that. They can remove the lunar calendar from us, but they cannot remove the seven-day week from us. They attempted several times in history, but they failed. Those who try to remove this seven-day week from us, in fact are walking on the path of Gog and Magog. They are opposing the continuation of the days of Jumu’ah and Sabbath.

Yaum al-Jumu’ah and Yaum as-Sabt are mentioned in the Qur’ān. An entire sūrah of the Qur’ān was entitled al-Jumu’ah and the companions of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam referred to it by that name. The other five days of the seven-day week cycle are not mentioned in the Qur’ān. Not everything has to be mentioned in the Qur’ān. It is not we who demand, in search of answers to all our questions, that the Qur’ān must mention everything. When we study the Qur’ān, we ought to think. Since the Qur’ān has mentioned two days by name, and it is interesting to note that these two names (of two days) were also synonymous of a seven-day week at the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, it is our duty to think and seek to locate the rest of the names in other sources of our tradition. Before we do that, let me present the evidence of how the two words also referred to a seven-day week at the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam.

عن أنس بن مالك رضي الله عنه { أن رجلا دخل المسجد يوم الجمعة من باب كان نحو دار القضاء ، ورسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قائم يخطب ، فاستقبل رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قائما ، ثم قال : يا رسول الله ، هلكت الأموال ، وانقطعت السبل فادع الله تعالى يغيثنا ، قال : فرفع رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يديه ثم قال : اللهم أغثنا ، اللهم أغثنا ، اللهم أغثنا . قال أنس : فلا والله ما نرى في السماء من سحاب ولا قزعة ، وما بيننا وبين سلع من بيت ولا دار قال : فطلعت من ورائه سحابة مثل الترس . فلما توسطت السماء انتشرت ثم أمطرت ، قال : فلا والله ما رأينا الشمس سبتا ، قال : ثم دخل رجل من ذلك الباب في الجمعة المقبلة ، ورسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قائم يخطب الناس ، فاستقبله قائما ، فقال : يا رسول الله هلكت الأموال ، وانقطعت السبل ، فادع الله أن يمسكها عنا ، قال : فرفع رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يديه ثم قال : اللهم حوالينا ولا علينا ، اللهم على الآكام والظراب وبطون الأودية ومنابت الشجر ، قال : فأقلعت ، وخرجنا نمشي في الشمس . قال شريك : فسألت أنس بن مالك : أهو الرجل الأول قال : لا أدري

In the above hadith recorded by Imam Muslim in his saheeh, and I summarise, we find that a man came to the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam on al-Jumu’ah while the Prophet was standing and speaking to the people in the masjid, and he asks for rain to which the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam raised his hands and asked Allah thrice for rain. Anas ibn Malik then said, we did not see the sun for one Sabt and then on the following Jumu’ah, a man came again asking the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam to ask Allah to withhold the rain and the narration continues.

We find in this narration that Anas ibn Malik radiyallahu anhu called the duration from one Jumu’ah to the next as a Sabt, meaning the six days in between one jumu’ah and the next. In a slightly different variation of the same event recorded by al-Bukhāriy, we find the word sittan instead of sabtan, which literally means, for the next six days, he says “we did not see the sun”.

This narration is the evidence that the word Sabt can refer to the six days in between two days of Jumu’ah. One Jumu’ah to the next therefore is a cycle of seven days.

In another narration recorded in the Musannaf of Abd ar-Razzāq, in the Musnad of ‘Abd ibn Humayd and (probably in one of the sunan) of Ibn al-Mundhir, Ibn Sīrīn reported:

وأخرج عبد الرزاق وعبد بن حميد وابن المنذر عن ابن سيرين قال: جمع أهل المدينة قبل أن يقدم النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم وقبل أن تنزل الجمعة، قالت الأنصار: لليهود يوم تجمعون فيه كل سبعة أيام، والنصارى مثل ذلك، فهلم فلنجعل يوماً نجتمع فيه، فنذكر الله ونشكره، فقالوا: يوم السبت لليهود، ويوم الأحد للنصارى، فاجعلوه يوم العروبة، وكانوا يسمون الجمعة يوم العروبة، فاجتمعوا إلى أسعد بن زرارة فصلى بهم يومئذ ركعتين، وذكرهم، فسموه الجمعة حين اجتمعوا إليه فذبح لهم شاة فتغدوا وتعشوا منها، وذلك لقلتهم، فأنزل الله في ذلك بعد { يا أيها الذين آمنوا إذا نودي للصلاة من يوم الجمعة فاسعوا إلى ذكر الله } الآية.

The people of Madīnah gathered before the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam arrived there and before al-Jumu’ah was sent down. The Ansār said, “The Jews have a day in which they gather every seven days, and the Christians likewise, so let us therefore take one day to gather so that we can remember Allah and give thanks to Him.” They (those who were present) said, “As-Sabt is for the Jews, and Yaum al-Ahad is for the Christians, so make al-‘Arūbah such a day (for us).” They used to call al-Jumu’ah as al-‘Arūbah. They gathered behind As’ad ibn Zurārah on that day and prayed with him two rak’at…

The above narration is another proof that the days of as-Sabt and of al-‘arūbah, which was later renamed as al-Jumu’ah, and Yaum al-Ahad, all three of which were days in a seven recurring days in a cycle.

In the well-known lengthy hadith about Dajjāl narrated by An-Nawwās ibn Sam’ān, recorded by Imam Muslim in his Saheeh, the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa salalm said, “…he (Dajjāl) will remain on earth for forty days, one day like a year, one day like a month, one day like a Jumu’ah…” Here is evidence that one Jumu’ah as used by the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam referred to the time in between one Jumu’ah and the next. If we do not take this as the meaning, then we will have to interpret the hadith, contrary to the language of the Arabs, to mean, in his third phase, Dajjāl will remain on earth for one day the duration of which will be like one day of Jumu’ah. That will be absurd. Otherwise, we will have to prove that the Arabs had understood the usage of the word Jumu’ah to mean other than seven days, like three days or four days or ten days or any other number that should be less than one lunar month. Then in order to not complicate things further, the person will have to further define how many Jumu’ahs are there be in one lunar month.

Al-Fayyūmī in his Misbāh al-Munīr says:

وَأَمَّا الْــجُمُعَةُ بِسُكُونِ الْمِيمِ فَاسْمٌ لِأَيَّامِ الْأُسْبُوعِ

“As for the Jum’ah, pronounced with a sukūn on the meem, it is a (collective) name given to all the days of the week.” This is in Arabic rhetoric principle, using the name of a part of something to address the whole known as Tasmiyatul Kull bismil Juz.

Here is a hadith in which all seven names of the seven days were mentioned by the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam:

خَلَقَ اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ التُّرْبَةَ يَوْمَ السَّبْتِ وَخَلَقَ فِيهَا الْجِبَالَ يَوْمَ الأَحَدِ وَخَلَقَ الشَّجَرَ يَوْمَ الاِثْنَيْنِ وَخَلَقَ الْمَكْرُوهَ يَوْمَ الثُّلاَثَاءِ وَخَلَقَ النُّورَ يَوْمَ الأَرْبِعَاءِ وَبَثَّ فِيهَا الدَّوَابَّ يَوْمَ الْخَمِيسِ وَخَلَقَ آدَمَ عَلَيْهِ السَّلاَمُ بَعْدَ الْعَصْرِ مِنْ يَوْمِ الْجُمُعَةِ فِي آخِرِ الْخَلْقِ وَفِي آخِرِ سَاعَةٍ مِنْ سَاعَاتِ الْجُمُعَةِ فِيمَا بَيْنَ الْعَصْرِ إِلَى اللَّيْلِ ‏"‏ ‏.

Abū Hurayrah (radiyallāhu ‘anhu) reported that the Prophet sallallāhu alayhi wa sallam took him by his hand and said:

“Allāh, Exalted and Majestic is He, created dust on Yaum as-Sabt, and created the mountains on Yaum al-Ahad, and He created the tree on Yaum al-Ithnayn, and He created that with which one labours for one’s livelihood on Yaum al-Thulāthā, and He created light (and according to another narration – nūn – the fish, perhaps meaning everything in the sea) on Yaum al-Arbi’ā, and He dispersed all the animals on Yaum al-Khamīs, and He created Ādam, on whom be peace, after al-‘Asr (late afternoon) on Yaum al-Jumu’ah as the last creation at the last part (the word used here is sā’ah which is usually translated as ‘hour’ but here perhaps it does not mean 60 minutes in modern usage) from the remaining time of al-Jumu’ah between late afternoon and night.”

The seven days of the week are as follows:

1.     Yaum al-Ahad (Sunday of the Pagan week)

2.     Yaum al-Ithnayn (Monday of the Pagan week)

3.     Yaum ath-Thulāthā (Tuesday…)

4.     Yaum al-Arbi’ā (Wednesday…)

5.     Yaum al-Khamīs (Thursday…)

6.     Yaum al-Jumu’ah (Friday…)

7.     Yaum as-Sabt (Saturday…)

This is a hadith on the creation of what is on earth and the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam began with as-Sabt. However, the meaning of the name ‘al-Ahad’ indicates that it was Day One of the creation of the samāwāt and the earth. I may be wrong, Allah knows best.

Al-Fayyūmī writes in his al-Misbāhul Munīr after mentioning that the word ‘Jum’ah’ is used as a collective name for the days of the week continues:

أَوَّلُ الْأَيَّامِ يَوْمُ الْأَحَدِ هَكَذَا عِنْدَ الْعَرَبِ

“The first day of the days (of the week) is Yaum al-Ahad, that was how it was with the Arabs.” That is, amongst the Arabs before Islam with regards to the sequence and after Islam with regards to these names.

Before Islām, during the Jāhiliyyah, the Arabs called these seven days by different names:

1.     Awwal

2.     Ahwan or Awhad

3.     Jubār

4.     Dubār

5.     Mu’nis

6.     ‘Arūbah

7.     Shiyār

[Ibn Kathīr mentions these names in his tafseer quoting ‘Alam ad-Deen as-Sakhāwī at length from his book al-Mash-hūr fī asmā-il ayyām wash-shuhūr]

Poetry is often used as proof of culture and language, hence it is interesting to note that an Arab poet before Islam (during the Jāhiliyyah period) had sung the following lines naming all the seven days of the week persistently run in a cycle, as night and day, night and day:

[Quoted and referenced by Abd ar-Razzāq as-Sā’idiy in his book Maut al-Alfāz fil ‘Arabiyyah – Obsolete/Extinct words in the Arabic Language]

In as-Sihāh, one of the most authoritative dictionaries, al-Jawharī defines the day of al-Jumu’ah, thus:

ويومُ الــجُمْعَةِ: يومُ العَروبةِ

“Yaum al-Jumu’ah is the day (that the Arabs called) al-‘arūbah.”

When the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam came, we see names used in narrations reported from him for these seven days different from those that the Arabs used, so we deduce that these names should rightfully be termed Prophetic sunnah because the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam used them. The Arabs did not use them before him. There are some examples of these names in the ahādīth. Here is one more:

الْحِجَامَةُ عَلَى الرِّيقِ أَمْثَلُ وَفِيهِ شِفَاءٌ وَبَرَكَةٌ وَتَزِيدُ فِي الْعَقْلِ وَفِي الْحِفْظِ فَاحْتَجِمُوا عَلَى بَرَكَةِ اللَّهِ يَوْمَ الْخَمِيسِ وَاجْتَنِبُوا الْحِجَامَةَ يَوْمَ الأَرْبِعَاءِ وَالْجُمُعَةِ وَالسَّبْتِ وَيَوْمَ الأَحَدِ تَحَرِّيًا وَاحْتَجِمُوا يَوْمَ الاِثْنَيْنِ وَالثُّلاَثَاءِ فَإِنَّهُ الْيَوْمُ الَّذِي عَافَى اللَّهُ فِيهِ أَيُّوبَ مِنَ الْبَلاَءِ وَضَرَبَهُ بِالْبَلاَءِ يَوْمَ الأَرْبِعَاءِ فَإِنَّهُ لاَ يَبْدُو جُذَامٌ وَلاَ بَرَصٌ إِلاَّ يَوْمَ الأَرْبِعَاءِ أَوْ لَيْلَةَ الأَرْبِعَاءِ ‏"

Ibn Mājah in his Sunan has recorded that ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar radiyallahu ‘anhu said that he heard the Messenger of Allah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam say:

“Cupping on an empty stomach is better, and in it there is healing and blessing, and it increases one’s intellect and memory. So have yourselves cupped for the blessing of Allah on Yaum al-Khamīs, and avoid cupping on Yaum al-Arbi’ā, al-Jumu’ah, as-Sabt and al-Ahad. Have yourselves cupped on Yaum al-Ithnayn and ath-Thulāthā, for that is the day on which Allah relieved Ayyub of Calamity, and He imposed the calamity upon him on Yaum al-Arbi’ā, and leprosy and leucoderma only appear on Yaum al-Arbi’ā, or on the night of al-Arbi’ā.”

In this hadith too we find all seven names of the days of the week.

Here it would be necessary to clarify that these are names and not numbers of a count. Secondly, these are only seven names and not 29 or 30 names. Thirdly, five of them are derived from numbers but are never used in any other number related words, therefore they stand alone as specific names of these specific days. Some of those who deny that there is such a thing as a week, point out that al-Ahad actually means the first day of the month; al-Ithnayn means the second day of the month; ath-Thulāthā means the third day of the month; al-Arbi’ā means the fourth day of the month and al-Khamees, the fifth day of the month. It follows logically therefore that al-Jumu’ah should be the sixth day of the month and as-Sabt the seventh day of the month. From the eighth day onwards, it is counted as eighth, ninth, tenth and so on till the twenty ninth day of the month and thirtieth day of the month if the moon is not sighted.

Anyone who has studied a little bit of Arabic would know that there is no reason to call the first day of the month as al-Ahad while any first of anything is either called al-Awwal or al-Ūlā. The same applies to the name al-Ithnayn, why use that while there is the word ath-thānī for second. Why use the word al-thulāthā while there is in common use the word ath-thālith for third? Why should the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam use the word al-Arbi’ā to refer to the fourth day of the month, which he has never used to mean fourth in a sequence? Why do these people choose to say al-Khamīs refers to the fifth day of the month while all who know Arabic, never use it to mean the fifth day in a sequence of days? Who are these people trying to distort names and turn them into names of numbers?

In fact, by saying that the meaning of al-Ahad is Awwal, they are abandoning the sunnah and returning to the name of the day used in the times of Jahiliyyah.

Yaum al-Ahad does not mean the first day; it simply means Day One. Yaum al-Ithnayn means Day Two. The next two days, Yaum ath-Thulāthā and Yaum al-Arbi’ā cannot be translated. They are derived from ‘three’ and ‘four’ but do not mean three and four, let alone third and fourth. We simply cannot translate them. The loose translation would be Tuesday and Wednesday. Al-Khamīs literally would refer to a passive form of ‘fifth’ or an exaggerated form of ‘fifth’. That would be absurd. These are not a play of words but specific names derived from the root letters of numbers.

The Arabic word أسبوع  used today to refer to the seven-day week, was not used in the same sense at the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. At that time, it was used specifically to refer to the seven rounds of Tawāf around the ka’bah. It is also derived from the word seven from the letters س ب ع. As mentioned earlier, the word for week during that time was either Sabt or Jum’ah. Perhaps the word for the week later on emerged due to the seven days of the week and because they run in a cycle like the seven rounds around the Ka’bah.

The following narration recorded in the Saheeh of Imam Muslim indicate that after al-Jumu’ah comes as-Sabt and after as-Sabt comes al-Ahad again, not the eight day of the lunar month:

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ "‏ نَحْنُ الآخِرُونَ وَنَحْنُ السَّابِقُونَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ بَيْدَ أَنَّ كُلَّ أُمَّةٍ أُوتِيَتِ الْكِتَابَ مِنْ قَبْلِنَا وَأُوتِينَاهُ مِنْ بَعْدِهِمْ ثُمَّ هَذَا الْيَوْمُ الَّذِي كَتَبَهُ اللَّهُ عَلَيْنَا هَدَانَا اللَّهُ لَهُ فَالنَّاسُ لَنَا فِيهِ تَبَعٌ الْيَهُودُ غَدًا وَالنَّصَارَى بَعْدَ غَدٍ

Abū Hurayrah radiyallahu ‘anhu narrated that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said, “We are the last people (as an ummah) and we will be the ones who precede (every other ummah) on the Day of Qiyāmah although every ummah were given the book before us, and we were given the Book after them. It was this day (al-Jumu’ah) that was prescribed for us. Allah guided us to it and our people after us will follow us in it, while the Jews observe the next day and the Christians the day after.”

Why should anyone attempt to incorporate the cycle of the week into the cycle of the month. We have heard of Lunar Sabbatarians but only nowadays we hear of Muslims who believe in a Lunar Jumu’ah. It appears as though they are following the Lunar Sabbatarians into the lizard’s hole. Why would they want to reset the week with the coming of every new moon unless they have heard the same argument from those Lunar Sabbatarians? Banū Isrā’īl never did reset the Sabbath with every new moon.

The Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam clearly distinguished the cycle of the week from the cycle of the month and year in the following hadith:

Imam Muslim has recorded that Abū Hurayrah radiyallahu anhu narrated that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said:

الصلوات الخمس والجمعة إلى الجمعة، ورمضان إلى رمضان، مكفرات ما بينهن إذا اجتنبت الكبائر‏

“The five daily obligatory prayers, al-Jumu’ah to al-Jumu’ah and Ramadan to Ramadan are expiation of sins committed in between each of them respectively, if only the major sins are refrained from.”

This means that due to the performance of prayers, minor sins committed in between the five daily prayers are forgiven, the same applies to minor sins committed in between two days of Jumu’ah (during the six days in between) and the same applies to minor sins committed in between two Ramadans, eleven months apart.

A Muslim has his daily affair of the five daily prayers, his weekly affair of the salat al-Jumu’ah and his yearly affair of Ramadan, Zakat and Hajj.

If this is not convincing enough, then let it suffice to say one last thing that can clear the entire confusion.

If the seven names of the days of the week are referring to the days of the lunar month, then every first day of the lunar month will be called al-Ahad and cannot be called any other of the seven names. However, there were days in the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam when the day of Eid al-Fitr, which is the first day of Shawwal happened to be Yaum al-Jumu’ah. Those who argue that the Salat al-Jumu’ah is the sixth day of every lunar month, just like the Lunar Sabbatarians, will have to explain how did al-Jumu’ah fall on the first day of Shawwāl. In the case of the Eid of Hajj, the 10th day of Dhul Hijjah every year, it should be, according to their argument, Yaum al-Thulāthā or al-Yaum al-Āshir (the tenth day); it cannot be Yaum al-Jumu’ah. In their count, the next Jumu’ah after the sixth day of Dhul Hijjah should be two days after Eid. In any case, both Eids – al-Fitr and al-Adhā – can never be a Yaum al-Jumu’ah. But here are eight narrations that such an event happened in the time of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. There are more narrations as evidence to show that it also occurred in the time of the companions after the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam.

حديث زيد بن أرقم رضي الله عنه أن معاوية بن أبي سفيان رضي الله عنه سأله: هل شهدت مع رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم عيدين اجتمعا في يوم واحد؟ قال: نعم، قال: كيف صنع؟ قال: صلى العيد ثم رخص في الجمعة، فقال: (من شاء أن يصلي فليصل). رواه أحمد وأبو داود والنسائي وابن ماجه والدارمي والحاكم في "المستدرك" وقال: هذا حديث صحيح الإسناد ولم يخرجاه، وله شاهد على شرط مسلم. ووافقه الذهبي، وقال النووي في "المجموع": إسناده جيد.
حديث أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قال: (قد اجتمع في يومكم هذا عيدان، فمن شاء أجزأه من الجمعة، وإنا مجمعون). رواه الحاكم كما تقدم، ورواه أبو داود وابن ماجه وابن الجارود والبيهقي وغيرهم.
وحديث ابن عمر رضي الله عنهما قال: اجتمع عيدان على عهد رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فصلى بالناس ثم قال: (من شاء أن يأتي الجمعة فليأتها ، ومن شاء أن يتخلف فليتخلف). رواه ابن ماجه ورواه الطبراني في "المعجم الكبير" بلفظ: اجتمع عيدان على عهد رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم: يوم فطر وجمعة، فصلى بهم رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم العيد، ثم أقبل عليهم بوجهه فقال: (يا أيها الناس إنكم قد أصبتم خيراً وأجراً وإنا مجمعون، ومن أراد أن يجمع معنا فليجمع، ومن أراد أن يرجع إلى أهله فليرجع).
وحديث ابن عباس رضي الله عنهما أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قال: (اجتمع عيدان في يومكم هذا فمن شاء أجزأه من الجمعة ، وإنا مجمعون إن شاء الله). رواه ابن ماجه، وقال البوصيري: إسناده صحيح ورجاله ثقات.
ومرسل ذكوان بن صالح قال: اجتمع عيدان على عهد رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يوم جمعة ويوم عيد فصلى ثم قام، فخطب الناس، فقال: (قد أصبتم ذكراً وخيراً وإنا مجمعون، فمن أحب أن يجلس فليجلس -أي في بيته- ومن أحب أن يجمع فليجمع). رواه البيهقي في السنن الكبرى.
وعن عطاء بن أبي رباح قال: صلى بنا ابن الزبير في يوم عيد في يوم جمعة أول النهار ثم رحنا إلى الجمعة فلم يخرج إلينا، فصلينا وحداناً، وكان ابن عباس بالطائف فلما قدمنا ذكرنا ذلك له، فقال : (أصاب السنة). رواه أبو داود، وأخرجه ابن خزيمة بلفظ آخر وزاد في آخره: قال ابن الزبير: (رأيت عمر بن الخطاب إذا اجتمع عيدان صنع مثل هذا).
وفي صحيح البخاري رحمه الله تعالى وموطأ الإمام مالك رحمه الله تعالى عن أبي عبيد مولى ابن أزهر قال أبو عبيد: شهدت العيدين مع عثمان بن عفان، وكان ذلك يوم الجمعة، فصلى قبل الخطبة ثم خطب، فقال: (يا أيها الناس إن هذا يوم قد اجتمع لكم فيه عيدان، فمن أحب أن ينتظر الجمعة من أهل العوالي فلينتظر، ومن أحب أن يرجع فقد أذنت له).
وعن علي بن أبي طالب رضي الله عنه قال لما اجتمع عيدان في يوم: (من أراد أن يجمع فليجمع، ومن أراد أن يجلس فليجلس). قال سفيان: يعني : يجلس في بيته. رواه عبد الرزاق في المصنف ونحوه عند ابن أبي شيبة.

The above narrations are narrated by different companions and therefore the evidence that the truthfulness of the event of either one of the Eid falling on the day of al-Jumu’ah, both of which cases will prove those who argue in favour of a lunar Jumu’ah wrong, should rightfully be called mutawātir. To reject an evidence that is mutawātir, one has to do a lot of work. It is not as easy as to simply call these narrations fabricated. There has grown a trend nowadays to easily call such narrations fabricated.

There are more evidence in the hadīth collections, which are not as clear as the above eight narrations, but cannot be understood in any other way, such as the following one:

وَعَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ ‏- رضى الله عنه ‏- عَنِ اَلنَّبِيِّ ‏- صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏-قَالَ: { لَا تَخْتَصُّوا لَيْلَةَ اَلْجُمُعَةِ بِقِيَامٍ مِنْ بَيْنِ اَللَّيَالِي, وَلَا تَخْتَصُّوا يَوْمَ اَلْجُمُعَةِ بِصِيَامٍ مِنْ بَيْنِ اَلْأَيَّامِ, إِلَّا أَنْ يَكُونَ فِي صَوْمٍ يَصُومُهُ أَحَدُكُمْ } رَوَاهُ مُسْلِمٌ

Imam Muslim recorded in his Saheeh that Abū Hurayrah radiyallahu ‘anhu reported that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said:

“Do not single out the night of al-Jumu’ah from the rest of the nights to stand in (voluntary) worship and do not single out the day of al-Jumu’ah from the rest of the days to fast except when it falls on a day when one of you are accustomed to fast.”

What does it mean when al-Jumu’ah falls on a day you are accustomed to fast? How can al-Jumu’ah coincide with other days? It will only make sense if we are accustomed to fast on a specific day or a specific number of days every month, like the day of ‘Āshūrā and the one preceding it or succeeding it which are the ninth, tenth and eleventh days of Muharram, or if we fast every 13th, 14th and 15th days of the lunar month which are known as the white days when the moon is considered brightest, or if we are accustomed to fast all of the months of Rajab and Sha’bān every year as it is sunnah to fast, or perhaps the dark days of the month, which are the 27th, 28th, and 29th days of the month, and so on. Yaum al-Jumu’ah cannot coincide with another day in any other way. It only makes sense if al-Jumu’ah is part of a separate cycle of days and happens to coincide with the separate cycle of the days of the lunar month. Only then, would the Prophet’s instruction against it make sense.

On the other hand, of course the only way to escape all these arguments is to simply dismiss all these ahādīth as fabrications. Then the only questions for them to answer will be those related to the first empirical evidence mentioned in this essay. They will have to answer against the physical and historical proofs of the three masājid mentioned at the very beginning.