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August 2010

1. DEAR ABE: What is the difference between Laylat al Miraj, Night of Ascension, and Laylat al Qadr, Night of Power. How are they different?  –MARAM, MAURITIUS

DEAR MARAM: The Night of Ascension and Night of Power both recognize a single event, the night that the Quran was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad.  On the 27th night of Ramadan, the soul of the prophet Muhammad was raised to the highest heaven to be given the Quran [1].  Commemorating God on that night is recommended.

Relevant Verses:  [1] 2:185, 17:1, 44:3, 53:1-18, 97:1-5.


2. DEAR ABE: My aunt has knee pain and is unable to stand during her salat (Contact Prayer). Is it acceptable if she prays on a chair? –NAJA, USA

DEAR NAJA: It is perfectly fine for her to perform her salat while sitting on a chair.  In the Quran, God refers to modifying salat under unusual circumstances [1]. The most important thing is to be sure that the Salat is dedicated to God ALONE.

Relevant Quran Verses:  [1]2:239.


3. DEAR ABE: If God is All Knowing, All Sufficient then why does he require angels to record the good and bad deeds of humans?  –JAMES, INDIA

DEAR JAMES: God is indeed omniscient and omnipotent. Our actions in life demonstrate what is inside of us, which, currently only the individual and God knows. On the Day of Judgment, each human will have no excuse as there will be witnesses to his actions. The witnesses will be the angels, other humans, and jinns [1]. The witnesses will make the "case" against or for a certain human, even though God knows everything.

Relevant Quran Verses:  [1]2:143, 4:165-6, 22:78, 34:40-1, 43:80, 50:16-29, 82:10-2.

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The answers provided by Abe and friends represent the understanding of the
writers, and should not be taken as the only acceptable approach. The reader is encouraged to research the topics further using the Quran.

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