Why Are the Last Ten Nights of Ramadan Special?

Ramadan in Bangladesh 2022

Ramadan’s last ten nights. The best ten nights.

Any of them could be laylat al-qadr, the night of power, though we have hints of which night it might be. Ramadan is filled with three distinct blessings: God’s mercy, God’s forgiveness, and safety from hellfire. These are not limited to the last ten nights, but laylat al-qadr’s blessings — the most of any single night in the Islamic calendar — are multiplied more than we may know to benefit the weight of our good deeds on the divine scale.

Excellence and its parallels

Ramadan is a month of excellence, and its last ten nights are the most excellent nights in Islam’s Hijri calendar. For those wondering, this is specific to nights. Comparably, the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah are the best in the Hijri calendar. They’re coming up! We’re less than a month from Dhul-Hijjah, which is expected to start on or close to June 30 this year.

And just as the best ten nights give way to Eid al-Fitr, the best ten days introduce Eid al-Adha. The build up to each comes with Laylat al-qadr falling in the last ten nights is precisely what makes them special. They are the holiest nights, and in Islam’s holiest month. 

Laylat al-qadr — a night of power and revelation

Ramadan is the month in which the Quran was revealed as a guide for humanity with clear proofs of guidance and the criterion. So whoever is present this month, let them fast. But whoever is ill or on a journey, then an equal number of days. Allah intends ease for you, not hardship, so that you may complete the prescribed period and proclaim the greatness of Allah for guiding you, and perhaps you will be grateful” (Quran 2:185).

This ayah (verse, or sign) from the Quran’s second chapter, Surat al-Baqarah, directly states that the Prophet Muhammad (peace upon him) received revelation of the Quran during Ramadan. Studying the prophet’s life, we learn that he received that revelation in the last ten nights. And in those last ten nights, he specifically received revelation for the first time on what we know to be laylat al-qadr (also commonly spelled laylatul qadr in English).

The Angel Gabriel (Jibreel in Arabic) would convey God’s revelation of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad. His first revelation was from Surat al-Alaq (this Surah’s name translates to The Clot).

Read, in the Name of your Lord, Who created — created humans from a clinging clot. Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous, Who taught by the pen — taught humanity what they knew not” (Quran 96:1-5).

Laylat al-qadr falling in the last ten nights is precisely what makes them special. They are the holiest nights, and in Islam’s holiest month.

last ten nights group of girls

How should I spend the last ten nights?

As always, the best acts a Muslim can do are to pray, make dhikr (remembrance), give charity (either zakat or sadaqah), make dua (personal prayers that differ from salah, the mandatory daily prayers), and be good to others. (What Is the Difference Between Zakat and Sadaqah?)

The Prophet Muhammad, peace upon him, guided us to say a specific dua:

Say: O Allah! You are all-pardoning. You love to pardon. So pardon me.”

It is typical for Muslims to give more in charity during Ramadan’s last ten nights than any other time throughout the year. That’s because blessings are multiplied exponentially in Ramadan’s last nights. Some wait to give their zakat at that time, and others focus on giving sadaqah to causes that warm their hearts.