The month of Allah, al-Muharram is the first month from the Hijri Months and one of the four sacred months. Our Prophet Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam explained to us rulings of this month which have come in the Book of Allah or the Prophet’s Sunnah. From the most important of these rulings are as follows :

1. The Month of Muharram is Sacred

The month of al-Muharram is from the sacred months which Allah has honored and mentioned in His Book;

{إِنَّ عِدَّةَ الشُّهُورِ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ اثْنَا عَشَرَ شَهْراً فِي كِتَابِ اللَّهِ يَوْمَ خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ مِنْهَا أَرْبَعَةٌ حُرُمٌ ذَلِكَ الدِّينُ الْقَيِّمُ فَلا تَظْلِمُوا فِيهِنَّ أَنْفُسَكُمْ}}

{Indeed, the number of months ordained by Allah is twelve, in Allah’s Record since the day He created the heavens and the earth, of which four are sacred. That is the Right Way! So do not wrong one another during these months. And together fight the polytheists as they fight against you together. And know that Allah is with those mindful ˹of Him˺}

(Surah At-Tawbah, Ayah 36)

Allah has honored this month among the other months and named it “Month of Allah, Muharram”. So Allah attributed it to Himself in order to honor it. And for indicating this further, Allah made it sacred/ haraam and it is the right of no one from the creation to make it halal. The Prophet Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam explained this to us and elucidated the sanctity of four months in which fighting is prohibited. Among these four months is the month of Muharram.

Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) narrated that, the Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Time has come back to its original state which it had when Allah created the Heavens and the Earth; the year is twelve months, four of which are sacred. Three of them are in succession; Dhul-Qa’da, Dhul-Hijja and Al-Muharram, and (the fourth being) Rajab Mudar (named after the tribe of Mudar as they used to respect this month) which stands between Jumad (ath-thani) and Sha’ban.”

Some group of scholars have declared it preponderant that al-Muharram is the best of the four sacred months. Hafidh Ibn Rajab (Rahimahullah) said, “The Ulama differed regarding which of the scared months is best , Hasan al-Basri and other said, the best of them is the month of Allah, al-Muharram, and some of the later generation scholars have declared this opinion as preponderant.”

It is denoted by the Hadeeth brought by Imam Nasā’ī and others from Abu Dhar (May Allah be pleased with him), I asked the Prophet Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, “‘Which part of the Night is the best and which month is the best?’ He Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said, ‘The best part of the night is the middle of it, and the best month is the one which you call as al-Muharram.'”

Hafidh Ibn Rajab explained this by saying, the general connotation in this Hadeeth that “the best month” is to be understood after the month of Ramadhān.

And from the most important rulings of this month’s is:

2. Fighting is Prohibited in the Month of Muharram

It is prohibited to to start fighting in this month. Hafidh Ibn Kathir said, that the Ulama have differed whether starting the war in the sacred month is abrogated or not, two opinions exist in the matter:

a. The famous opinion which is that it is abrogated because Allah said: {So do not wrong one another during these months. And together fight the polytheists as they fight against you together}. So Allah commanded to fight the polytheists.

b. Second opinion is that starting the war is sacred months is prohibited and it isn’t abrogated for Allah said: {There will be retaliation in˺ a sacred month for ˹an offence in˺ a sacred month, and all violations will bring about retaliation. So, if anyone attacks you, retaliate in the same manner}. And He said: {But once the Sacred Months have passed, kill the polytheists ˹who violated their treaties˺}

The Arabs used to honor this month in Jāhiliyyah and used to call it as the deaf month of Allah because of its intense prohibition/sanctity (or the sound of weapons couldn’t be heard in this month for fighting was prohibited even in Jāhiliiyah)

3. It is Rewarding to Fast in This Month

Prophet Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam explained to us the virtue of fasting the month of Allah al-Muharram, when he said, “The best (month) of fasting after the month of Ramadhān is the month of Allah al-Muharram.”