Misconception # 1: The night of the 15th of Shaban should be singled out for worship, prayer, etc.
Clarification: Our best example and role model is the Prophet (sa) and he never, ever singled out this night for worship or Qiyam nor did his Sahabah do that.
Shaykh Ibn Baz said: “There is no saheeh Hadeeth concerning the night of the fifteenth of Shaban. All the Ahadeeth that have been narrated in this regard are fabricated and Daeef (weak), and have no basis. There is nothing special about this night, and no recitation of Quran or prayer, whether alone or in congregation, is specified for this night. What some of the scholars have said about it being special is a weak opinion. It is not permissible to single it out for any special actions. This is the correct view.”
(Fatawa Islamiyah, 4/511)
Misconception # 2: There are special prayers to be offered on this night.
Clarification: There are NO special prayers to be offered on this night specifically. And all those Ahadeeth giving you long lists of special formulae that are “supposed to guarantee you Allah’s forgiveness and Jannah” are all fabricated, false and innovations in our Deen. If there were such prayers, the Prophet (sa) would have told us about them and we would have had evidence of him and the Sahabah doing it.
Misconception # 3: Allah descends to the first heavens on this night to forgive us.
Clarification: Allah’s descent to the first heaven does not happen on the night of the fifteenth of Shaban only. Rather it happens on every single night of the year.
The Prophet (sa) said: “Every night when it is the last third of the night, our Lord, the Superior, the Blessed, descends to the nearest heaven and says: Is there anyone to invoke Me that I may respond to his invocation? Is there anyone to ask Me so that I may grant him his request? Is there anyone asking My forgiveness so that I may forgive him? ” (Bukhari)
Thus, when Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak was asked about the descent of Allah on the night of the fifteenth of Shaban, he said to the one who asked him: “O weak one! The night of the fifteenth? He descends every night!”
Misconception # 4: This is the night when our fate, lifespan, and provisions are decreed.
Clarification: Some people think that the “blessed night” (Laylatim-Mubarakah) mentioned in Surah ad-Dukhan (44:3), refers to the night of 15th Shaban, when Allah decrees our lifespan, provisions and fate. In fact, they even pray 6 Rakahs, 2 for each of these things. However, all that is fabricated and far, far away from the Sunnah. And, in reality, the “blessed night” mentioned in Surah ad-Dukhan, actually is referring to Laylatul Qadr that comes in Ramadan. (Tafseer Ibn Kathir of Surah al-Qadr)
Misconception # 5: One should fast on the day of the fifteenth.
Clarification: Here again, there is no Saheeh report that tells us that the Prophet (sa) or his Sahabah ever picked this day specifically to fast. The Sunnah of the Prophet (sa) was to fast most of this month and not just the 15th. However, if the fifteenth of Shaban coincides with a Monday or Thursday, or with the three white days or if a person is generally fasting, without associating seeking extra rewards to fasting this specific day, then it is allowed. (Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid)
Misconception # 6: This is the night when the souls of departed ones return to their families.
Clarification: Here again, some people misunderstand the verse in Surah al-Qadr and think that the “sending down of the Rooh” as mentioned in this Surah refers to the souls of dead people returning to see their families, even though it refers to Jibreel (Tafseer Ibn Kathir). And that is why we see women preparing the sweets, the Halwas and other “goodies” for the souls of their loved ones.
Not only is that in itself an erroneous, deviant belief and Bidah, but to believe that the souls of the dead can return back to the world and meet/see their relatives is also totally incorrect and false. The teachings of the Quran and the Sunnah clearly state that the souls of the dead do not return back to the world. Besides, they don’t even eat the Halwas. It is actually you who eats it!
Misconception # 7: Visiting graveyards especially this night is something good.
Clarification: Although the Prophet (sa) encouraged visiting graves, he forbade singling out any day or night for any kinds of good deeds if it is not prescribed in the Shariah. And he did not specifically visit the graveyard on the night of the 15th of Shaban. The Hadeeth of Aisha (rta) that mentions that the Prophet (sa) visited the graveyard this night is not authentic and thus does not have any proof for visiting graves specifically on this night of Shaban.
“O you who believe! Obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those of you who are in authority. (And) if you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger, if you believe in Allah and in the Last Day. That is better and more suitable for final determination.” (Al-Nisa 4:59)
Shaykh Ibn Jibreen said: “These reports (about worship and fasting an the 15th of Shaban) became very well known in some countries which were overwhelmed by ignorance; One should not be deceived by the large numbers of ignorant people who do these things.”