The first 10 days of ‘Zul-hijjah’ (Islamic month) have come and bring along the bliss from your LORD! A chance you may feel regret if you lose!
O you whose hard heart is as dark as the night, is it not time that your heart must be filled with light and become soft? Expose yourself to the gentle breeze of your Lord’s mercy during these ten days, for Allaah will cause this breeze to touch whomever He wills, and whoever is touched by it will be happy on the Day of Judgement. There is much to be gained, so make the most of the opportunity afforded by these invaluable and irreplaceable ten days. Hasten to do good deeds, before death strikes, before one can regret one’s negligence and failure to act, before one is asked to return to a place where no prayers will be answered, before death intervenes between the hopeful one and the things he hopes for, before you are trapped with your deeds in the grave. May Allaah bless our Prophet Muhammad and all his Family and Companions. Ameen!

Virtues of these days
1.These are the best 10 DAYS of this world. Even better than Ramadan. (But not the last 10 NIGHTS of Ramadan) Ibn ‘Abbaas R.A reported that the Prophet SAW said: "There are no days in which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allaah than these ten days." The people asked, "Not even Jihaad for the sake of Allaah?" He said, "Not even jihaad for the sake of Allaah, except in the case of a man who went out to fight giving himself and his wealth up for the cause, and came back with nothing." (Reported by al-Bukhaari, 2/457)
2. One of these ten days is the day of Arafah (ninth of Zilhajjah). In Saheeh Muslim it was narrated from ‘Aa’ishah R.A that the Prophet SAW said: “There is no day on which Allaah frees more people from the Fire than the Day of ‘Arafaah. He comes close and expresses His pride to the angels, saying, ‘What do these people want?’”
3. These days also include Yawm al-Nahar (the Day of Sacrifice and Eid), the greatest day of the entire year and the greatest day of Hajj, which combines acts of worship in a way unlike any other day.
5. Allaah swears an oath by them, and swearing an oath by something is indicative of its importance and great benefit. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): "By the dawn; by the ten nights" [al-Fajr 89:1-2]. Ibn ‘Abbaas, Ibn al-Zubayr, Mujaahid and others of the earlier and later generations said that this refers to the first ten days of Dhu’l-Hijjah. Ibn Katheer said: "This is the correct opinion." (Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 8/413)
4. All the five pillars could be performed in these ten days.
Things to do in these 10 days
1. Hajj and Umrah (pilgrimage): These are the days of pilgrimage and we all know the virtue of them both: It was narrated in Bukhari and Muslim that Abu Hurayrah R.A said: I heard the Messenger of Allaah SAW say: “Whoever performs Hajj and does not utter obscenities or commit sin, will come back as on the day when his mother bore him.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 1521; Muslim, 1350.
2. Sawm (Fasting): The Prophet SAW used to fast on the first nine days of Dhu’l-Hijjah. It was narrated from Hunaydah ibn Khaalid from his wife, that one of the wives of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to fast on the first nine days of Dhu’l-Hijjah… end quote. (Narrated by al-Nasaa’i, 4/205 and by Abu Dawood; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood, 2/462)
Fasting on the Day of Arafah: It was reported from Abu Qataadah (R.A) that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was asked about fasting on the Day of ‘Arafaah. He said, “It expiates for the sins of the previous year and of the coming year.” Narrated by Muslim.

3. Reciting tahmeed, tahleel and takbeer a great deal: It is Sunnah to recite takbeer (saying Allaahu akbar (Allaah is most great)), tahmeed (saying al-hamdu Lillah (praise be to Allaah)), tahleel (saying Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah (There is no god but Allaah)) and tasbeeh (saying Subhaan-Allaah (Glory be to Allaah)), during the first ten days of Dhu’l-Hijjah, saying these words out loud in the mosques, homes, streets and every place in which it is permissible to remember Allaah, to perform this act of worship openly and proclaim the greatness of Allaah. Abu Hurairah R.A and Abdullah bin Umar (R.A) used to gout in the marketplace and start proclaiming out loudly and people used to follow!
Note: Men should recite out loud and women should recite quietly.
It was narrated from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “There are no days that are greater before Allaah or in which good deeds are more beloved to Him, than these ten days, so recite a great deal of tahleel, takbeer and tahmeed during them.” Narrated by Ahmad, 7/224; its isnaad was classed as saheeh by Ahmad Shaakir.
Takbeer: Allaah akbar, Allaahu akbar, laa ilaaha ill-Allaah, Allaahu akbar, wa Lillaah il-hamd (Allaah is Most Great, Allaah is Most Great, there is no god but Allaah; Allaah is Most Great and to Allaah be praise).

4. Sacrifice: One of the righteous deeds that bring a person closer to Allaah in these ten days is to slaughter the sacrifice and to look for a good, fat animal and to spend money on it for the sake of Allaah ONLY. As it was the Sunnah of Prophet Ibrahim (A.S) we ought to have the same feeling which he had while he was sacrificing his son in Allah’s way!
Note: The Prophet SAW said: "When you see the new moon of Dhu’l-Hijjah, if any one of you wants to offer a sacrifice, then he should stop cutting his hair and nails until he has offered his sacrifice." According to another report he said: "He should not remove (literally, touch) anything from his hair or skin." (reported by Muslim with four isnaads, 13/146).
May Allah give us the taufeeq to avail this chance and accept this minor effort from us, disregarding all weaknesses and shortcomings! Ameen!