We set out on work-related, personal and recreational journeys all the time. In fact, many fortunate ones also gain the distinct honor to travel in the Madani Qafilas of Dawat-e-Islami in the cause of Almighty Allah. When our travels are this frequent, we should try and learn a few Sunan and manners of travelling, by following which we could also make our journey a means of earning reward. Some Sunan and manners of travelling are discussed below:
- Try to start your journey from a Thursday if possible as setting out on a journey on a Thursday is a Sunnah. Hence, Sayyiduna Ka’b bin Malik رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُreports that the Noble Messenger صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَset out on Thursday for the Battle of Tabuk and he used to prefer setting out on Thursdays.
- If you find it convenient, you should travel by night as the distance is covered more quickly during the night. Sayyiduna Anas رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُstates: The Prophet of Mankind, the Peace of Our Heart and Mind, the Most Generous and Kind صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَsaid: Travel by night, for the earth is folded (traversed more easily) during the night.
(Sunan Abi Dawood)
- If two or more people are travelling in a group, they should appoint someone as their chief. Sayyiduna Abu Hurairah رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُnarrates that the Noble Prophet صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَsaid:When three are on a journey, they should appoint one of them as their commander.
(Sunan Abi Dawood)
- Before the departure, one should seek forgiveness from his relatives, friends and loved ones for his wrongdoings and those, whose forgiveness is sought, should sincerely forgive. Sayyiduna Abu Hurairah رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُreports that the Holy Prophet صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَsaid: The one whose brother approaches him seeking forgiveness, then he should accept his apology whether he is in the right or in the wrong. The one who does not do that will not get access to my pond.
Sayyiduna Umar bin Al-Khattab رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُ said: Whoever does not show mercy will not receive mercy. Whoever does not forgive others will not be forgiven. Whoever does not pardon others, will not be pardoned. Whoever does not protect others will not be protected.
- After putting on your clothes for the journey, if it is not a time in which performing Salah is Makruh, then offer 4 Rak’at Nafl Salah with Sura Al-Fatiha and Sura Al-Ikhlas. By virtue of these 4 Rak’at, your family and wealth will be safeguarded until your return. Then leave from your Masjid and if it is not a Makruh time, offer 2 Rak’at Nafl there as well.
- Whenever we are about to set out on a journey, we should entrust our family, wealth and property in the care of Almighty Allah. Almighty Allah is indeed the best protector. In fact, try to say the following words to your family before setting out:
أَسْتَوْدِعُكَ اللَّهَ الَّذِي لاَ تَضِيعُ وَدَائِعُهُ
“I command you to Allah’s keeping, Whose trust is never lost.”
(Sunan Ibn -e- Maja)
- The Islamic brothers going on a business trip should recite the following 5 chapters of the Holy Quran:
- Sura Al-Kafiroon till the end 2. Sura Al-Fath till the end 3. Sura Al-Ikhlas till the end 4. Sura Al-Falaq till the end and 5. Sura Al-Naas till the end. By the blessings of reciting these chapters, your travel provisions will last longer and you will have a profitable trip if Allah wills.
(Kanz -ul- Ummal)
- In a train or bus etc. recite بسم اللہ، اللہ اکبرand سبحان اللہthree times and لا الہ الا اللہ once, then say:
سُبْحَانَ الَّذِي سَخَّرَ لَنَا هَذَا وَمَا كُنَّا لَهُ مُقْرِنِينَ وَإِنَّا إِلَىٰ رَبِّنَا لَمُنقَلِبُونَ
“Exalted is He who has subjected this to us, and we could not have otherwise subdued it. And indeed, to our Lord, we will surely return.”
(Al-Zukhruf 43: 13,14)
- When you go aboard a ship, reading the following Dua will save you from drowning ان شاء اللہ عزوجل:
بِسْمِ اللَّهِ مَجْرهَا وَمُرْسَاهَا ۚ إِنَّ رَبِّي لَغَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ
“In the name of Allah is its course and its anchorage. Indeed, my Lord is Oft-forgiving and Most Merciful.”
- Keep invoking the name of Allah عزوجلduring the journey. In a train or a bus, recite بسم اللہ، اللہ اکبر، الحمد للہand سبحان اللہ three times and لا الہ الا اللہ once. Always remember to perform Zikrullah whenever you are on a journey. If we keep ourselves busy in Zikrullah during a journey, an angel will guard us throughout the way and, Allah forbid, if we listen to songs and music or waste our time in useless jokes and laughter, Satan will become our companion in the journey. Hence, the Holy Prophet صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَ has said: Whoever focuses his attention towards Allah during a journey and remains busy remembering Him, Almighty Allah appoints a guarding angel for him and whoever remains busy in vulgar poetry and useless conversations, Almighty Allah has a Satan pursue him.
- If you find a needy person during the journey, you should try to fulfill his need. ان شاء اللہit will be more reward-giving as sometimes a traveler himself becomes needy, so who can estimate the reward of a traveler who helps others. Sayyiduna Abu Saeed Khudri رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُreports thatwhile we were traveling along with the Messenger of Allah صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَ, a man came to him on his she camel, and began to drive her right and left. The Messenger of Allah صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَ said: He who has a spare riding animal should give it to him who has no ride; and he who has surplus provisions should give them to who has no provisions. So much so that we thought that none of us had a right in surplus wealth.
(Sunan Abu Dawood)
- When you climb stairs or walk upwards on a slope or your bus etc. passes through a road which is steep, then it is better to recite اللہ اکبرand when you climb down stairs or walk downwards on a ramp, then it is better to recite سبحان اللہ. Sayyiduna Jabir رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُreports that whenever we went up a place we would say اللہ اکبر, and whenever we went down, we would say, سبحان اللہ.
- A travelers should never be heedless of supplication, because as long as he is travelling, his supplication is accepted, in fact, his supplication is accepted until he returns home. Similarly, the supplication of the oppressed and the supplication of parents in favor of their children are also accepted. Sayyiduna Abu Hurairah رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُreports that the Holy Prophet صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَsaid: Three kinds of supplications are granted. There is no doubt in their acceptance: 1. Supplication of the oppressed, 2. Supplication of a traveler and 3. Supplication of a father for his son.
- When you fear an enemy, recite Sura Al-Quraish, ان شاء اللہyou will be protected from all sorts of calamities.
- If you find yourself in some sort of trouble and need help, it is recommended in a Hadith to call out three times in the following manner:
اعینونی یا عباد اللہ
“O bondmen of Allah! Help me!”
- Bring a gift back to your family when you return home as this is a Sunnah. The Holy Prophetصَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَsaid: The one who returns from a journey should bring a gift for his family, even if it be stones in his sack.
(Kanz -ul- Ummal)
- Upon returning from a journey, it is a Sunnah to offer 2 Rak’at Nafl Salah in your Masjid. Sayyiduna Ka’b bin Malik رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُnarrates that when the Noble Messenger صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَreturned from a journey, he would first visit the Masjid and would offer 2 Rak’at supererogatory Salah there before sitting down.
May Almighty Allah enable us to spend our entire journeys as per the Sunnah and bless us with the sacred journey of the blessed Haramain and also give us the strength to travel in Madani Qafilas with the devotees of Rasool!