A Successful Ramadan – Shaykh Saalih Al-Fawzaan
1. The piety and humility of the Salaf
When Ramadan came to a close, the rightly guided predecessors (As-Salaf As-Saalih) used to frequently seek forgiveness, repent to Allah – The Mighty and Majestic – and fear that their (deeds) would not be accepted. They used to exert themselves (in worship) in Ramadan and outside of Ramadan, afterwards they would be fearful that none of this will be accepted.
2. How the Salaf behaved when Ramadan was approaching and when it left
They used to seek the forgiveness of Allah and repent. So much so that it was reported that they would supplicate to Allah for six months that He would allow them to reach Ramadan. If He allowed them to reach Ramadan, they would fast, pray at night and supplicate for the next six months that He accepts the month of Ramadan from them.
3. Signs that Ramadan has been accepted
Following good deeds with good is a sign that (an act) has been accepted, whether it is pertaining to Ramadan or other than it. If the Muslim is in a good state after Ramadan, performing many good deeds and righteous actions, then this is a proof of acceptance.
4. Signs that Ramadan has not been accepted
If the opposite is true, and he follows good with evil, and as soon as Ramadan is over he follows on from this with sins, heedlessness and turning away from the obedience of Allah, then this is a proof that it has not been accepted.
Every person knows their true situation after Ramadan. So let them look, if they are in a better state, then let them thank Allah, as this shows (that it has been) accepted. If their state is worse, then let them repent to Allah and seek the forgiveness of Allah, as this is a proof that it has not been accepted and it is a proof of negligence and carelessness.
5. Do not despair of the Mercy of Allah
But the slave should not lose hope of the mercy of Allah. He should not close the door that is between him and Allah and despair of the mercy of Allah.
“Say: O my slaves who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins). Do not despair of the Mercy of Allah: verily Allah forgives all sins. He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.”
It is upon him to repent, seek the forgiveness of Alaah and return to Allah – The Mighty and Majestic.
Allah – The Mighty and Majestic – accepts repentance from those that repent.
“And He it is Who accepts repentance from His slaves, and forgives sins, and He knows what you do.”
And the peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad.
By the Shaykh, ‘Allaamah Saalih al-Fawzaan – Ithaaf Ahlil Eemaan bi Duroos Shahr Ar-Ramadan pg. 119-12 – Translated by Hassan As-Somali