At reading the Quranic verse 9:36,
The number of months in the sight of Allah is twelve (in a year) – so ordained by Him the day He created the heavens and the earth; of them four are sacred: that is the straight usage. So wrong not yourselves therein, and fight the Pagans all together as they fight you all together. But know that Allah is with those who restrain themselves.
- What are the four sacred months in Islam?
- Does the verse imply continuous months or interrupted months?
- Would Ramadan be categorized as a sacred month? If not, then why.
- What constitutes a sacred month based on this verse?
The four months are also referenced in verses 2:194, 9:5, 9:2.
The four sacred months are: Zul Qa`dah, Zul Hajj, Muharram and Rajab. However, it should be kept in mind that the sanctity of these months was not established by the Prophet (pbuh), but was an already existing sanctity as a part of the Abrahamic tradition.
These months were traditionally fixed for journeys towards the Ka`bah for Hajj and Umrah. A month preceding the month of Hajj and a month succeeding it was specifically for the journey for Hajj, while during Rajab a complete ceasefire was observed for those intending to take up Umrah.
I hope this brief explanation will answer all your questions.
October 7, 2004