The Night of the Middle of Sha`baan

Shaykh al-Albaanee rahimahullaah mentions in his ‘Silsilatul-Ahaadeeth as-Saheehah‘ vol. 3 pp. 135:

((Allaah the Exalted and Most High looks down at His creation the night of the middle of  Sha`baan[1], so he forgives all of His creation, except for a polytheist [mushrik] or one who has enmity [in his heart].))

He said: “[This is] an authentic narration, reported from a group of the Companions with different chains of narrations that strengthen each other. And they are: Mu`aadh bin Jabal, and Abu Tha`labah al-Khushanee, and Abdullaah bin `Amr, and Abu Moosaa al-Ash`aree, and Abu Hurayrah, and Abu Bakr as-Siddeeq, and `Awf bin Maalik, and `Aaishah [may Allaah be pleased with them all].

Reported by Ibn Abee `Aasim in ‘as-Sunnah‘ no. 512…”

[1] Sha`baan: the eighth month of the Islamic calendar, the month preceding Ramadaan.


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The Ruling on Fasting the Day of `Aashooraa if it Were to Coincide with a Saturday

Shaykh Ibn Baaz rahimahullaah was asked:

Q: If the day of `Aashooraa (10th of Muharram) were to coincide with a Saturday; is it permissible for us to fast it?

A: There is no harm in a person fasting Saturday unrestrictedly – [whether it was] obligatory or supererogatory [fasts].

As for the narration which mentions the prohibition of fasting on a Saturday, then it is a weak narration that is reported in contradictory forms, all of equal strength [i.e. so it is impossible to give precedence to one of them over another]; and it is contrary to the authentic narrations.

So there is no harm in a Muslim fasting Saturday – whether it was an obligatory fast or a supererogatory fast – even if he did not fast another day along with it.

And the narration which contains the prohibition of fasting Saturday except for that which is obligatory is an unauthentic narration. Rather it is weak, contradictory to that which is more authentic, and contrary to the authentic narrations [in that regard].

See: The official website of Shaykh Ibn Baz rahimahullaah


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Not Informing of Eclipses Before they Occur

Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih al-Uthaymeen rahimahullaah was asked:

Q: Solar and lunar eclipses are a sign from the signs of Allaah the Most High for the purpose of causing fear to the servants, and to remind them of Allaah the Mighty and Majestic, so that they may avoid the sins that they fall into day and night.

However astronomers now say: that it is [merely] a natural occurrence which happens in a particular way – once a year or more. So how then; is it supposed to cause fear?

They also announce when it is going to occur in newspapers and other than that. Therefore, when it actually occurs people are not fearful, nor do they take heed, rather they are unaffected. What do you say regarding this? And how can this sign be a cause for fear?

A: This sign causes fear to those whose faith in Allaah the Mighty and Majestic and [whose faith] in that which the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alaihi wa sallam said is complete.

There are two reasons for solar & lunar eclipses occurring:

(i) A natural reason: which can be apprehended by a person’s senses and by [astronomical] calculations. This is something known by astronomers; they have knowledge of it and can calculate it [precisely] to the minute.

(ii) A legislated reason: which is not known except by way of revelation. And it is that Allaah decrees this to strike fear into the servants.

So we ask: ‘Who decreed for this natural reason to happen so that the lunar and solar eclipses occur?’ Indeed it is Allaah.

Why [did He do so]? So that the people may be fearful and take precaution. This is why the Prophet sallAllaahu alaihi wa sallam went out in a state of fear[1] when he witnessed the solar eclipse, and [by mistake, took hold of the outer garment of a woman] till he was given his own garment[2]. And he was dragging his garment [till he entered the mosque][3]. The people also became frightened. He then commanded someone to call for the prayer to be prayed in congregation[4]. The Muslims gathered in one mosque supplicating to Allaah the Mighty and Majestic and turning to Him.

Therefore, the true believer is fearful. As for the one who’s mind is desensitized, or whose faith is weak, then he does not pay any attention to this [eclipse].

As for informing people of it before it actually occurs, then I see that it is not befitting that they should be informed of it. Because when people know in advance, they prepare for it as if it was a prayer that one looks forward to, just like they prepare for the Eid prayer, and it happens while they are ready for it, and not frightened. However, if it happens suddenly, then there will be terror and fear which does not occur to the one who has [prior] knowledge of it.

I will give you a practical example. If you went down a step, and you were ready, and you knew that there was a step below you – would you be affected? [No, you would not].

However, if you were oblivious and did not know [that there was a step], then you took the step [and tripped], it would have an effect upon your heart, and an effect upon you.

Due to this; I hope that they [the eclipses] are not mentioned and not spread amongst the people. Even if it was mentioned in the papers, don’t spread it between the people. Leave off [telling] the people until it occurs and they are not ready or prepared for it – so that it has a greater effect upon their souls.

[See ‘Majmoo` Fataawaa‘ of Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih al-`Uthaymeen rahimahullaah; vol. 16 pp. 298-300]

He rahimahullaah was also asked:

Q: Is it better to inform people of the time of an eclipse – so that they may prepare [for it]?

A: It is better – in my opinion – that they do not inform [each other]; because if the eclipse were to occur unexpectedly then it would have a greater effect upon the souls.

Because of this we find that when people came to know of the perceptible reason for the eclipse, and they knew of it before it occurred – its effect became weaker upon the souls of the people.

And due to this, before the people came to know of these affairs, they would become extremely frightened if there was an eclipse; they would weep and go out to the mosques, scared and afraid. And Allaah’s aid is sought.

[See: ‘Majmoo` Fataawaa’ of Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih al-`Uthaymeen rahimahullaah; vol. 16 pp. 303]

[1] Agreed upon. Reported by al-Bukhaaree no. 1059; & Muslim no. 906.

[2] Reported by Muslim no. 906.

[3] Reported by al-Bukhaaree no. 1040

[4] Agreed upon. Reported by al-Bukhaaree no. 1045; & Muslim no. 910.

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Fasting the Ten of Dhul-Hijjah Before Making up Missed Fasts of Ramadaan

Imaam al-Bukhaaree rahimahullaah mentions in his ‘Saheeh‘; the Book of Fasting, Chapter: When Should the Missed Days of Ramadaan be Made up?:

Sa`eed bin al-Musayyib said regarding fasting the ten [of Dhul-Hijjah]: “It is not befitting [that a person does so]; until he starts with Ramadaan (i.e. the fasts he missed from Ramadaan).”

Then al-Bukhaaree rahimahullaah mentioned (no. 1950) the narration of `Aaishah radiyAllaahu `anhaa that she said:

“I used to have fasts to make up from Ramadaan; and I would not be able to make them up until Sha`baan (i.e. a month before the following Ramadaan).” End

Ibn Hajr rahimahullaah said in explanation:

“This is used as proof that `Aaishah did not used to fast any supererogatory fasts – not during the ten of Dhul-Hijjah, nor `Aashooraa (10th of Muharram), nor anything besides that. And this is based on her opinion of it not being permissible for a person to do voluntary fasts if they had fasts from Ramadaan to make up. And how is it possible for a person to say that? [i.e. how is it possible for a person to claim it is permissible to fast supererogatory fasts while having obligatory fasts to make up (from Ramadaan etc.)?!]” End.

`Abdur-Razzaaq bin Hammaam as-San`aanee [d. 211H] rahimahullaah mentioned in his ‘Musannaf‘:

Chapter: Making up Fasts from Ramadaan in the [first] Ten [days of Dhul-Hijjah]

7710 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from Ma`mar from az-Zuhree that he used to dislike making up the fasts from Ramadaan during the [first] ten [days of Dhul-Hijjah]. Ma`mar said: Someone who heard from al-Hasan informed me that he used to say it (i.e. the same saying).

7711 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from Hishaam bin Hassaan that he used to dislike making up fasts from Ramadaan in the ten.

7712 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from Ma`mar and ath-Thawree from Aboo Ishaaq from Abdullaah bin Murrah from al-Haarith bin `Alee from `Alee that he said: “Ramadaan is not to be made up in Dhul-Hijjah.”

7713 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from ath-Thawree from Hammaad that he said: ‘I asked Ibraaheem and Sa`eed bin Jubayr regarding a man who had some days to make up from Ramadaan; is it permissible for him to fast during the ten [days of Dhul-Hijjah] voluntarily?’ They both said: “He should begin with that which is obligatory.”

7714 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from ath-Thawree from al-Aswad bin Qays that `Umar used to prefer making up the days from Ramadaan in the ten [days of Dhul-Hijjah].

7715 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from ath-Thawree from `Uthmaan bin Mawhab that he said: ‘I heard a man ask Aboo Hurayrah, saying: “I have days to make up from Ramadaan; so may I fast the ten [days of Dhul-Hijjah] voluntarily?” He said: “No, and why [would you do that]? Begin with the right of Allaah, then fast voluntarily afterwards with whatever you wish.”

7716 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from Ibn Jurayj from `Ataa that he said: ‘Is it disliked for a man to fast the ten [of Dhul-Hijjah] voluntarily, while he has obligatory fasts to make up?’ He said: “No; however fast the ten [of Dhul-Hijjah] with the intention of making up the obligatory fasts.”

7717 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from ath-Thawree from Aboo Hayyaan from an old woman from `Aaishah that she said: “No, not until you fulfill the right upon you.”

7718 – `Abdur-Razzaaq narrated from Ibn Jurayj that he said: Mujaahid said: “Whoever has fasts from Ramadaan to make up and he does supererogatory fasts, then let him intend that which he fasts voluntarily to be his making up of Ramadaan.” End

Ibn Katheer rahimahullaah mentions in ‘Musnad al-Faarooq‘ vol. 1 pp. 350-351, [Ummul-Quraa edtn.]:

“Aboo `Ubayd said: Ibn Mahdee narrated to me from Sufyaan from al-Aswad bin Qays from his father from `Umar: that he used to prefer making up the fasts from Ramadaan in the ten of Dhul-Hijjah. Or he said: There are no days in which I like making up the fasts from Ramadaan more than them.

Aboo `Ubayd said: Meaning: he did not deliberately intend to delay [making up the fasts from Ramadaan] until the ten [days of Dhul-Hijjah], however he used to prefer fasting the ten days [of Dhul-Hijjah]. So if the ten days enter upon someone who has fasts to make up, then he should fast them with the intention of making up the fasts he has upon him. This is so he does not fast voluntary fasts while he has obligatory fasts to make up; rather he gathers between the two affairs.

He said: The reason `Alee disliked that a person make up his fasts in the ten [days of Dhul-Hijjah] is because he held the opinion that a person should make up his fasts altogether – one after another – without breaking them up. And [if he were to make up his fasts in the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah] then `Eid may come while he still has fasts left to make up, so he would end up fasting them separately.” End.

Ibn Rajab rahimahullaah said in ‘Lataaiful-Ma`aarif‘ pp. 465 [al-Maktabul-Islaamee edtn.]:

“`Umar and `Alee – may Allaah be pleased with both of them– differed regarding: making up fasts from Ramadaan during the ten of Dhul-Hijjah.

So `Umar preferred it – due to the excellence of its days; and therefore [based on that]: making up fasts from Ramadaan in it [i.e. these ten days] is more excellent than [making them up] at other times.

However `Alee used to forbid from that. And there are two narrations from Imaam Ahmad in that regard. It is said the reason for `Alee’s saying is because: if a person were to make up obligatory fasts during these ten days then the virtue of fasting them voluntarily would pass him by. And this is the reason that Imaam Ahmad and other than him gave.

And it is said: That he receives the reward of voluntary fasting also…” End.

al-Kaasaanee al-Hanafee [d.587H] rahimahullaah said in ‘Badaai` as-Sanaai`‘, vol. 2 pp. 162 [Daarul-Fikr edtn.]:

And there is no harm in making up missed days from Ramadaan during the ten of Dhul-Hijjah – and it is the methodology of `Umar and the majority of the Companions, may Allaah be pleased with them, – except for something narrated from `Alee radiyAllaahu `anhu that he said: ‘It is disliked to do so in them, due to that which was reported from the Prophet sallAllaahu `alaihi wa sallam that he forbade making up fasts from Ramadaan in the[se ten].’

However what is correct is the saying of the majority – due to His saying – He the Most High:

فَمَنْ كَانَ مِنْكُمْ مَرِيضًا أَوْ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍ فَعِدَّةٌ مِنْ أَيَّامٍ أُخَرَ

Sooratul-Baqarah; (2):184

[[Meaning: So whoever among you is ill or on a journey – then an equal number of days are to be made up.]] – unrestrictedly, without differentiating [between different days].

And because it (i.e. the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah) is a time that is recommended to fast. Therefore making up obligatory fasts within it is better than making up obligatory fasts in other than it.

And that which is reported in the narration is strange as far as the narrations are concerned. So it is impermissible to restrict and make specific the unrestricted wording of the Book with the like of it.

Or we hold the narration to mean: it is recommended for the one who is used to fasting voluntarily during these days – because it is better for him to make them up in other than these days – so that he does not miss out on the excellence of fasting these days, and he makes up the fasts from Ramadaan at another time. And Allaah knows best regarding that which is correct. End.

Shaykh `Abdul-`Azeez ibn Baaz rahimahullaah was asked:

Q: What is the ruling of supererogatory fasting – such as fasting the six of Shawwaal, and the ten of Dhul-Hijjah, and the day of `Aashooraa (10th Muharram) – for the one who has days from Ramadaan that he has not made up?

A: What is obligatory upon the one who has days from Ramadaan to make up is that he begins with that before fasting voluntarily; because the obligation is more important than the recommended act, in the most correct of the sayings of the people of knowledge. End.

See: The  official website of the Shaykh rahimahullaah

Ibn Baaz rahimahullaah was also asked:

Q: I fasted the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah voluntarily; however I have days to make up from Ramadaan. So is it permissible to make up the days of Ramadaan during the first days of Dhul-Hijjah?

A: Yes, it is obligatory upon the one who has fasts to make up that he begins with them before fasting voluntarily during the month of Dhul-Hijjah and other than that. Likewise the six of Shawwaal, a person does not fast them while he has fasts to make up. Rather he gives making up obligatory fasts precedence. End.

See: The official website of the Shaykh rahimahullaah

Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih al-`Uthaymeen rahimahullaah said in ‘ash-Sharhul-Mumti`‘ vol. 6 pp. 442-444:

“Is it permissible for a person to fast [other than Ramadaan] before making up the days he missed from Ramadaan, and is his fasting correct – if he were to fast?

The answer is: If the fasting is obligatory such as a ransom, or an expiation, then there is no harm.

As for if the fasting is voluntary then the [Hanbali] methodology is that voluntary fasting is not correct before making up [the obligatory fasts]; and the one who does so is sinful.

They gave the reason that voluntary fasting is not to be performed before the obligatory fasts.

And some of the people of knowledge held the permissibility of doing so; as long as the time does not become restricted. They said: As long as there is enough time, then it is permissible for him to fast voluntarily – just like if he were to pray a voluntary prayer before praying the obligatory prayer when there was sufficient time to do so. For example: Dhur time starts when the sun passes its zenith and ends when the shadow of an object becomes the same length as it. So it is allowed for him to pray it at the end if its time, and during the rest of the time it is permissible for him to pray voluntarily – because the time is extensive.

And this saying is clearer and closer to that which is correct. Meaning: his fasting is correct, and he is not sinful – because the analogy is clear.

However: is this better; or is it better that he begins by making up [the obligatory fasts he missed]?

The answer is: It is better that he begins with making up the fasts he missed. And even if the ten of Dhul-Hijjah were to pass by, or the day of `Arafah, then we say: Fast the fasts you have to make up during these days. And perhaps you will catch the reward of making up the [obligatory] fast as well as the reward of fasting during these days.

And supposing you do not receive the reward of fasting these days when making up missed fasts – then making up missed fasts is better than voluntary fasting [anyway].

And in response to the reasoning given by our companions [i.e. the Hanbali scholars] then we say: The time for the obligatory fasts in this case is sufficient, so it is not obligatory upon me to fast now such that it can be said: I left an obligatory act. Rather this is something obligatory in ones conscience, and Allaah the Exalted has made its time expansive. So if you were to fast a supererogatory fast then there is no harm.

[However] there is an issue that needs to be paid attention to:

And it is: The six days of Shawwaal are not to be fasted before making up the fasts from Ramadaan. So if they were to be fasted before [making up missed fasts from Ramadaan] then they would be counted as voluntary fasts unrestrictedly. And such a person would not attain the specific reward for fasting them as mentioned by the Messenger sallAllaahu `alaihi wa sallam in his saying: “Whoever fasts Ramadaan then he follows it up with six from Shawwaal , it is as if he has fasted for the entire year.” [Reported by Muslim no. 1164 from a narration of Aboo Ayyoob al-Ansaaree]

And that is because the wording of the narration is: “Whoever fasts Ramadaan.” And the one who has fasts to make up then it is not said he has fasted Ramadaan. This is clear.

Some of the students of knowledge thought that the differing regarding  the validity of voluntarily fasting before making up obligatory fasts [also] applies to this [issue], but that is not the case. Rather it does not apply to this [issue]; because the narration regarding this [issue] is clear. So there is no six [of Shawwaal] until after Ramadaan has been [fully] made up.” End.

[And when asked in ‘Fataawaa Noorun Alad-Darb‘ he answered with the like of what has preceded. See #3994, #3997, #3998, #4004. Also see: ‘Majmoo` Fataawaa’ of Ibn `Uthaymeen vol. 20 pp. 48-49]

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Take Advantage of Your Time

Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih al-Uthaymeen rahimahullaah said:

A person should take advantage of his lifetime by [performing] righteous action, because he will regret it – when death comes to him – if a single hour passed him by and he did not draw closer to Allaah the Mighty and Majestic in it.

Every hour that passes you by and you do not draw closer to Allaah by way of it, then it is a waste; because it has gone and you did not benefit from it.

So take advantage of this opportunity by [performing] the prayer, making remembrance of Allaah, reading the Qur·aan, and being attached to Allaah the Mighty and Majestic. Let your heart always be with Allaah the Exalted and Most High.

Your Lord is above the Heavens and you are upon the Earth; so do not be negligent in remembering Allaah upon your tongue, through your actions, or in your heart. For verily this worldly life will pass by, and it will not remain for anyone.

Look at those who preceded you from the previous nations and those who lived aeons ago.

Look at those who preceded you from your own friends – yesterday they were with you; enjoying themselves, eating just like you eat, and drinking just like you drink – and now they are a pledge for their actions, and they are going to be held to account for them.

And exactly the same thing will happen to you; whether your stay in this world is long or short. Allaah the Most High said:

يَآ أَيُّهَا الْإِنْسَانُ إِنَّكَ كَادِحٌ إِلَىٰ رَبِّكَ كَدْحاً فَمُلاَقِيهِ

Sooratul-Inshiqaaq; (84):6

[[Meaning: O man! You are laboring towards your Lord with your deeds, and you will meet Him with them.]]

So take advantage of this opportunity my brother – take advantage of the opportunity of your lifespan. Nothing will help you on the day of on the Day of Resurrection; not wealth, nor children, nor family. Nothing will help you except if you come to Allaah with a sound heart.

I ask Allaah the Most High to make yourselves and myself from those who come to their Lord with a sound heart; and that He causes us to die upon the correct belief and upon tawheed (monotheism) – verily He is all-Capable over everything.

See: ‘Sharh Riyaadus-Saaliheen’ vol. 5 pp. 153-154

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Shaykh ibn Uthaymeen Narrates a Humorous Story About Mice

Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih al-Uthaymeen rahimahullaah said:

Rats – a type of rodent – caused the flood of the dam[1] by demolishing it.

They also destroy animal hides, especially water-skins that were used [in the times of old] to hold water; they destroy them and rip them open.

Likewise they steal gold – and this is something we have witnessed at home. We lost one of the women’s rings, so we searched and searched for it until we noticed a crack in the wall. And I knew prior to that that they steal gold. So we made the crack bigger and found the ring inside the hole.

And our Shaykh [Imaam as-Sa`dee] rahimahullaah informed us of a man who was writing in his room when a mouse descended from the roof and came close to him; so he placed a vessel over it and trapped it. After a while – when it had become delayed from its friends – one of them came looking for it to see where it had gone. It came to know that it’s friend was trapped underneath the vessel, so it ascended to the roof and returned with a gold coin. The coin was small, such that the mouse could easily carry it. It brought the coin and dropped it next to the man. Why?

[The students reply]: As a ransom.

[Ibn Uthaymeen rahimahullaah]: Or as blood money!

Anyway, the man said [to himself]: I will not release it. The mouse waited to no avail.

Then it ascended to the roof again and returned with another gold coin, and dropped it.

However the man said [to himself]: ‘Behind the hills is that which is behind them’[2]. It continued to bring a third, fourth, fifth – until it reached ten – ten gold coins! It had become a collection!!

In the end it came with the bag. Indicating what? That’s it! All it had was finished. When the mouse brought the bag the man lifted the vessel and killed it[s friend]. He killed the mouse and the other one ran away.

In any case – this story I mentioned – my Shaykh [Imaam as-Sa`dee] rahimahullaah informed me of; indicating that from the harm and mischief of mice is their stealing of gold.

Similarly, they enter flour and contaminate it by defecation and other than that. So they are from the most corrupt of animals, and it is from the Sunnah (supererogatory) to kill them; even in the middle of the Masjidul-Haraam (i.e. the mosque of the Ka`bah).”

[1] The Shaykh rahimahullaah is referring to the story Allaah the Most High mentions in His saying:

لَقَدْ كَانَ لِسَبَإٍ فِي مَسْكَنِهِمْ آيَةٌ ۖ جَنَّتَانِ عَن يَمِينٍ وَشِمَالٍ ۖ كُلُوا مِن رِّزْقِ رَبِّكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لَهُ ۚ بَلْدَةٌ طَيِّبَةٌ وَرَبٌّ غَفُورٌ فَأَعْرَضُوا فَأَرْسَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ سَيْلَ الْعَرِمِ وَبَدَّلْنَاهُم بِجَنَّتَيْهِمْ جَنَّتَيْنِ ذَوَاتَيْ أُكُلٍ خَمْطٍ وَأَثْلٍ وَشَيْءٍ مِّن سِدْرٍ قَلِيلٍ

Soorah Saba; (34):15-16

[[Meaning: There was for the tribe of Sheba in their dwelling place a sign: two gardens on the right and on the left. They were told, “Eat from the provisions of your Lord and be grateful to Him. A good land have you, and a forgiving Lord.” But they turned away refusing, so We sent upon them the flood of the dam, and We replaced their two gardens with gardens of bitter fruit, tamarisks and something of sparse lote trees.]]

[2] An Arabic metaphor used to describe something suspicious, or a scheme/plot behind something.

It’s origin is that a slave-girl promised her male friend that she would meet him behind the hill when she finished serving her family at night. However they busied her and prevented her from going, until her longing for him overtook her, and she said: “You prevented me, and behind the hills is that which is behind them!”. [See: ‘Lisaanul-`Arab‘ of Ibn Manthoor]

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Your Actions are Shown to Your Relatives & Your Family From the Deceased

Shaykh al-Albaanee rahimahullaah said in as-Saheehah vol. 6a, pp. 605:

“Indeed your actions are shown to your relatives and your family from the deceased; so if they are good then they rejoice because of that – and if they are other than that they say: ‘O Allaah do not cause them to die until you guide them, just as you have guided us’.”

Reported by Ahmad 3/64-165 with a chain of narration from Sufyaan from the one who heard Anas bin Maalik say: then he mentioned the narration – which is attributed to the Prophet sallAllaahu `alaihi wa sallam.

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