Nani completed her Fajr Salaah and made Salaam. She then looked over at Khaira and Abdur- Rahmaan sitting besides her, on their own little musallahs. It always filled her heart with joy to see her grandchildren so keen to read salah besides her.
“MashaAllah, you are such good children. Imagine, if Nani is so happy with you both, then how much happier Allah Ta’ala must be with you. I’m sure when Mummy comes back home she is going to be so proud that you’ve been such good children. Now dears, read after me the Takbeer e Tashreek.
“What’s Takbeer e Tashreek nani?” asked Khaira.
Its a takbeer we read once after every Fardh salah, starting from the Fajr of the 9th of Zul-Hijjah, which is today, until after the asr salaah of the 13th of Zul-Hijjah.”
“Come read softly after Nani:
‘Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar,
La ilaha illallahu Allahu Akbar,
Allahu Akbar wa lillahil hamd.’ This is takbeer e tashreek.”
“But naani why do we read this takbeer during the days of Haj?” asked Abdur Rahmaan.
Nani then explained to them:
“When Prophet Ibraheem (AS) was ordered by Allah Ta’ala to slaughter his beloved son Ismaeel, he had him lying on the ground, ready to be slaughtered. Ibraheem was prepared to do as Allah Taala commanded him because he was an obedient servant of Allah. It was a very difficult task for him though, for he loved his Ismaeel dearly. As he began moving the knife on the neck of his beloved son Ismaeel (A.S) to slaughter him, the knife refused to cut and seemed blunt.
Suddenly he noticed Angels in the sky carrying a ram (sheep). The angels had been sent by Allah to inform Ibraheem he had passed the test, set by Allah for him. The command for him to slaughter his son was only to test him to see how much he truly loved Allah. Now that Allah Taala could see what an obedient slave he was, Allah Taala had sent down a ram with the Angels for him to slaughter instead.
Naani continued her story:
“The Angels exclaimed,
“Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar.”
(Allah is the Greatest, Allah is the Greatest)
And Ibrahim (A.S) replied “La Illaaha Illallaahu, Wallaahu Akbar”
(There is no god besides Allah, and Allah is the greatest).
When Ismaeel (A.S) heard this conversation he understood that Allah had saved him and that he was no longer going to be slaughtered, so he replied,
“Allaahu Akbar, Wa Lillaahil Hamd.”
(Allah is the greatest, and to Allah belongs all praise).
“Wow! Ibraheem (A.S) passed such a hard test!” exclaimed wide eyed Khaira. Imagine how hard it would have been if all fathers had to slaughter their sons like Ibraheem (A.S) was ordered to. Instead we just have to slaughter a sheep, goat, cow or camel every Eid.
Abdur Rahmaan then frowned and then said about the Takbeer e Tashreek:
“But Nani! What if we forget to read it after all these salaah?”
“Hmm, how about we make a reminder for ourselves so that we don’t forget.” said Nani.
“What kind of reminder?” Abdur Rahman asked.
“How about a little card we can pin onto our musallahs?” Nani suggested.
“Yes Nani,” said the children excitedly, “that would be a good reminder.”
Nani then wrote:
“Read Takbeer e Tashreek!!!”
on 3 small cards and gave them to the children to decorate with coloured markers. Once they were done she pinned a card onto each of their musallahs with a safety pin.
Khaira then said her eyes shining: “Naani, do you know once the reminder cards come off our musallahs on Saturday, there will only be 3 days left for mummy and daddy to return from Hajj?”
Naani nodded, smiled and said: “Alhamdu Lillaahi Rabbil Aalameen.”