The Night of Qadr: A Night for All of Humanity
Is the Night of Qadr a single night for all of the earth? This night has been accorded much importance and greatness in our religion and it has been mentioned that this night falls either on the 19th, 21st, or 23rd of the month of RamaÃÁn; in addition, many acts of worship and devotion have been listed for this night. It appears that the Night of Qadr is only one night out of all the nights of the year. Yet at the same time, we know that the month of RamaÃÁn begins one day earlier or later in various countries in the world.
Due to this reason, the Night of Qadr can potentially take place on various nights depending on which part of the world we are in. Does this mean that the Night of Qadr is in reality two nights or sometimes three, or is this a night that only applied to the time of the Prophet (Ò) and the region of Mecca (in the ÍijÁz)?
According to the sources that we have at hand, it is certain that the Night of Qadr was not exclusive to the time of the Prophet (Ò) and the region of the ÍijÁz. It is something that will continue forever and in all lands. This is something which is certain and there is no controversy regarding it. The main question here is whether the night begins during a specific and set time and then ends at a set time as well for all those on this earth.
This is a mistaken view because we know that the earth is round in shape and half of it is always in darkness, while the other half is lit by the sun. So it’s not possible for the Night of Qadr to begin at a set time for all the people of the world. The meaning of the Night of Qadr is in reality a night which takes place once a year and this night takes place according to the local time of each area. The people of each area have a certain local time (which is counted according to the lunar calendar for the purposes of the Islamic months) and the month of RamaÃÁn begins with the sighting of the moon. Therefore, according to this timeframe, the 19th, 21st, and 23rd nights are the nights which are considered to be the potential Nights of Qadr for the people of that area.
The issue that the people of every locale are to consider their local time in the s e l e c tion of such days is not limited to the Night of Qadr only; it applies to all of the holy days and nights mentioned in Islam. The entire calendar of a specific people is based off of their local time and not the time of any other country or location. This applies to the ÝÏd al-AdÎÁ, ÝÏd al-Fitr, as well as all other such days. Each of these days is also limited to only one day in a given location (but it can be situated during a different time in another location). It is due to this reason that various days are celebrated earlier in some countries and later in other countries.
This issue also pertains to the ‘coming down of the angels’ during the Night of Qadr. Since night gradually moves across one half of the globe, there is no contradiction if one area celebrates the Night of Qadr during their night and another area celebrates this night during their locally based night. Both times can logically be considered as falling at night.
 Taken from the text: PÁsukh Be PurseshhÁye MadhhabÐ, Ayatullah MakÁrim ShÐrÁzÐ and JaÝfar SubÎÁnÐ, MadreseyeÞ ImÁm ÝAlÐ ibn ÞAbÐ ÓÁlib (Ýa), Second Print, p. 500.
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