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Is the night of power (laylat al-qadr) fixed, year to year, or does it change? I've been reading some hadith and the only conclusion I can come to is that whenever it is revealed, to be on such-and-such a date (last ten odd nights, 27th, or the 23rd/25th/27th) it's that date for that year and then it changes.

Is that correct?

Also, related: What is the cause of the night of power? Is it the angels taking records back to heaven, or is it the mark of when the Quran was first revealed, or did the two just coincide once?

  • This appears to be two distinct questions. The last paragraph should be removed and posted separately. – goldPseudo Aug 15 '12 at 20:01
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Laylatul Qadr occurs in the last ten nights of Ramadan during an odd night (i.e. 21st, 23rd, 25th, 27th or 29th) because of the what we know from ahadeeth (which have been mention in other answers). However the scholars differ as to if it is fixed to one of these odd nights every year or if it changes every year to a different odd-numbered night.

The opinion of Imam Al-Albaani (Rahimahullah) was that it was fixed and it is on twenty-seventh according to strongest opinion since majority of the ahadeeth comply with this.

The opinion of others like Shaykh Ibn al-Uthaymeen (Rahimahullah) is that it is not fixed and it changes from year to year.

He said:

The Night of Al-Qadr is not specified to one fixed night throughout all the years. Rather, it constantly changes. So one year it could occur on the twenty-seventh night for example and on another year it could occur on the twenty-fifth night, according to Allah’s Will and Wisdom. What directs us to this is the Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saying: “Look for it (i.e. the Night of Al-Qadr) when there remain nine nights, when there remains seven nights, or when there remains five nights (i.e. 21st, 23rd, and 25th respectively without mention of 27th).”

Al-Haafidh Ibn Hajr said in Fath-ul-Bari: “The most strongest opinion is that it is on an odd night in the last ten nights and that it constantly changes.”

[Imam Muhammad Ibn Saalih Al-'Uthaymeen in his book Majaalis Shahr Ramadaan (pg. 106-107)]

Seeking Laylatul Qadr

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The Night of Qadar is not fixed as obvious from the following Hadith:

So after that day 'Abdullah (bin 'Umar) started offering Tahajjud. The companions of the Prophet (p.b.u.h) used to tell him their dreams that (Laila-tul-Qadr) was on the 27th of the month of Ramadan. The Prophet said, "I see that your dreams agree on the last ten nights of Ramadan and so whoever is in search of it should seek it in the last ten nights of Ramadan."

Sahih Bukhari, Night Prayer (19), Hadith 1159 (1)

The Companions of the Prophet (s.a.w) asked him about the 27th of Ramadan and He insisted to look for the night in the last ten nights of Ramadan.

Furthermore, in another Hadith:

Narrated By 'Aisha : Allah's Apostle said, "Search for the Night of Qadr in the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan."

Sahih Bukhari, Superiority of the Night of Qadr (32), Hadith 2018 (2)

This is the last level, the Prophet (s.a.w) specified. A night either on 21st, 23rd, 25th, 27th or the 29th.

For the second part of the question, the following results can be deduced:

  1. From Surah Al-Baqarah (2) , Ayat 185 that Quran was revealed in Ramadan.

  2. From Surah Ad-Dukhan (44), Ayaat 1-5 that on the night Quran was revealed, the Angels come down.

  3. From Surah Al-Qadr (97), Complete that the Night of Qadr is the same night in which the Quran was revealed and the Angels come down

All point to the same thing

  • 2
    None of your proofs prove that the night is not fixed. Just working with the ahadith you quoted, it is still possible that the date be fixed every year, like for example it falls on the 23rd of Ramadan year after year. The question meant - can it fall on the 25th one year, the 27th another year, etc. – Ansari Aug 11 '12 at 10:39
  • @Ansari this is where my confusion/curiosity lies, all the top hadith says is that both the date dreamed of, and the date of laylat ul-qadr are in the same 10 days (the last ten of ramadan) – Pureferret Aug 11 '12 at 11:25
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    @Pureferret at least you know that these 5 nights are confirm. More details would always remain confusion and opinions – M. Ahmad Zafar Aug 11 '12 at 12:17
  • @MuhammadAhmadZafar Alhamdulillah yes, but I was aware of the five days before posthing this question. I don't quite follow you last sentence though, surely if we knew it moved we would be encouraged not to pray just one of the nights! – Pureferret Aug 11 '12 at 14:24
  • Correct. I guess that's the only authentic answer you can get :-) – M. Ahmad Zafar Aug 11 '12 at 14:37
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My answer would be Allah knows best.

Allah has a reason to keep the details of the Night of Qadar a secret. This is so that we fill the last 10 odd nights with lots of ibadah.

This simply reminds me of surah Kahf [18:22], in which Allah says people dispute about the number of sleepers in the cave, BUT STILL Allah does not reveal the exact number. This is because we don't need to know this information and Allah has prevented us to enter into controversies about it.

(Some) say they were three, the dog being the fourth among them; (others) say they were five, the dog being the sixth,- doubtfully guessing at the unknown; (yet others) say they were seven, the dog being the eighth. Say thou: "My Lord knoweth best their number; It is but few that know their (real case)." Enter not, therefore, into controversies concerning them, except on a matter that is clear, nor consult any of them about (the affair of) the Sleepers. [Quran 18:22]

Similarly, anymore information beyond "last 10 odd nights" would just be guess work.

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    Its my understanding however that whether or the night was fixed we couldn't know the date – Pureferret Aug 11 '12 at 12:22
  • There are also some indicators such as weather, in My country, I realized that night of 27 is temperature decreasing few degrees, this might not be true but just guessing. – Akam Aug 4 '13 at 1:47
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My assumption about layla tul qadr is that when Quran was revealed there might have been different happenings in the skies and the same happenings might occur on different odd nights of Ramadhan each year. It is just as if someone was born on 15th jan 1994 at 5p.m. when it was windy and it was full moon. The next year he will celebrate his birthday on 15th jan but not every situation will be same as it was a year before, it might be sunny now and the moon phase will be different so the day the man was born will never be same again in each of it's feature.So we do not know the happenings of the skies, it is not measured by the happenings in the world or in terms of the worldly TIME. God Almighty has His own measurements. It is quiet possible that despite having difference in day and night around the world the Night of Qadr falls on same day for everyone or it might be possible that it is different for different parts of the world or it is different every year. Lastly, I assume that the happenings that occured at the time of the sending of Quran to the world, happens on different dates in Ramadhan each year. The happenings in the sky are actually the Night of Qadr and those special happenings occured with the sending down of Quran, now each year Quran is not sent down but those happenings do occur for example handing major matters of the world to angels. This is what layla tul qadr is in my view that it is special because of two things one is: writing decree, sending down Quran. Quran has been completed but the decree is written every year on one of the odd nights of Ramadhan each year.

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This is a controversial topic. If the Quran was revealed, say, on the 23rd of Ramadan, then it was NOT revealed on the 21st/25th/27th/29th. THAT IS FACT. And similarly, for the other dates just mentioned. THEREFORE logically, scientifically, religiously, the DATE WILL NOT CHANGE.

Therefore, this is the foundation of my assumption which is logically and absolutely correct. It cannot have been revealed 23rd Ramadan one year and then the following year, it was revealed 27th Ramadan. This can NOT be the case. Therefore the date is fixed. However, the prophet (SAW) said that it is on one of the odd-numbered last 10 nights of Ramadan... he (SAW) knew the date but forgot... he knew which one, I repeat, HE KNEW WHICH NIGHT!!!!). The discrepancy that people fall for is when a hadith mentions that if it's not in the last 7, look in the last 5 and so on. So people think that it changes BUT it doesn't and the prophet's (SAW) confirms this because he says LOOK FOR "IT" IN THE LAST 10 NIGHTS OF RAMADAN. It cannot occur twice in the same Ramadan year and clearly and logically, it cannot change from year to year.

The problem now is this... if someone says that they have seen it (Laylat al-Qadr) on the 23rd for example, and someone sees it on the 29th IN THE SAME YEAR, who is speaking the truth? It can only be one night and that one night NEVER changes. Is there another calendar in use? NO! Are there 2 nights??? Mmmm, well if one night it was revealed to Jibreel and 2 nights later to the prophet (SAW)... perhaps, so which one is it? The only possible conclusion is that it was revealed (either to Jibreel or the prophet SAW) on a specific night, Laylat al-Qadr, and if it was 21st Ramadan, all people who say that they saw LAQ on 23/25/27/29 are mistaken, or if it was revealed 23rd, all people who say that they saw LAQ on 21/23/27/29 are mistaken, or if it was revealed 25th, all people who say that they saw LAQ on 21/23/27/29 are mistaken, and so on... So, in my opinion, call out these false imams who say that it occurred on 27th Ramadan as they are doing now, and if you sincerely believe you saw it on a specific date, then FOR YOU, that date is correct and will NEVER change, and only tell your closest relative about this lest you be taken for a liar when your neighbour says "But I saw it 2 nights ago!"... Who is correct???

  • The fallacy in your logic that you fail to see is the assumption that the night Qur'an was revealed is laylatul qadr every year. The night was laylatul qadr in that particular year when Qur'an was revealed. It doesn't mean it is the same night that is laylatul qadr every year. There is no basis for such restriction. – Crimson May 31 at 21:17
  • Your logic that it cannot change makes no sense. As I said, the night when Qur'an was revealed was Laylatul Qadr in that particular year. Your claim is like saying "I was born on Monday so my birthday must be Monday every year". – Crimson May 31 at 21:50
  • <comments deleted> Comments are intended for constructive criticism and seeking clarification for the purposes of improving the post they're on, not for argument and debate or extended discussion of tangential points. If the relevant posts are unclear to the point that you need extensive discussion to explain how it answers the question, chances are the post needs to be edited. – goldPseudo Jun 1 at 12:49

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