Any worship that is performed for forty days successively, has special effects and particular advantages. Therefore, we find numerous traditions from the infallible Imams (as) in this regard, underlying its significance, generally and specifically. As for the general, there is a famous tradition that has come down in various authentic books and is as follows: “One who purifies himself for forty days for Allah, fountains of wisdom will flow from his heart to his tongue.”1 Numerous quotes from Imams (as) with similar meanings have been related. Now, for some instances of the special traditions.
Allamah Majlisi (a.r.) writes in Biharul Anwar, narrating from the Tafseer of al-Ayyashi that Fadl Ibne Abi Qurrah says, ‘I heard Imam-e- Sadiq (as) say, “Allah revealed to (Prophet) Ibrahim (as) that soon a child will be born to him. He passed on the good news to his wife, Sarah, who exclaimed in disbelief, ‘What! Will I give birth now when I am old?’
On this, Allah again revealed to Ibrahim (as) that she will indeed give birth. But, her progeny will be chastised for four hundred years because she refuted My statement.’ Imam (as) continues, ‘When the punishment continued incessantly on the Bani Israel, they wailed and cried to Allah for forty days.
Thus Allah revealed to Musa (as) and Haroon (as) to save them from the clutches of the tyrant Firon. Consequently, the chastisement of one hundred and seventy years was deducted from their decreed punishment. The same applies for you too. If you do as the Bani Israel did (i.e. supplicate unceasingly), then Allah will bring our salvation near. But if you do not do as they did, then the affair will come to pass as destined.”
I say: This tradition indirectly exhorts the recitation of Dua Ahad, taught by Imam Sadiq (as) for forty mornings successively and that one should not be negligent of it.
- 1. Biharul Anwar; Vol. 70, Pg. 242