Answer: Hustle for layla-tul-qadr (the night of power, the night of mercy, the night of forgiveness, etc.) in the last 10 nights of Ramadan.
First and foremost. It can be in ANY of the nights of the last 10 days. Even if you do the odd ones, it could be the even ones too, since some Muslims started on Sept 1 and some on Sept 2, thus every night in the last 10 nights are technically odd for the entire ummah. Somewhere there are Muslims praying every night trying to catch it.
Secondly, Allah only knows when it will be. I’ve also wondered since only Allah knows, then it is highly possible that Allah could switch it up for different communities and areas of the world. That would make it even more true to those who really deserve it and just spend every night trying to seek it (instead of the typical community coming out on the ’27th night’, which gives them only a 10% chance of getting it.
Thirdly, just do it every night and you’ll have a 99% chance of getting it. Just 10 nights.
Why is this post being written after the 27th night (for those who started on Sept 1.)? Once this night is done, the masjid is empty the next days, until Eid. So inshaAllah we should still try to attend the masjid continuously, because it could be the following nights still.
The Signs Layla-tul-Qadr
It was reported in Sahih Muslim from the hadith of Ubayy ibn Ka’b (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) announced that one of its signs was that when the sun rose on the following morning, it had no (visible) rays. (Muslim, 762)
It was reported from the hadith of Ibn ‘Abbas narrated by Ibn Khuzaimah, and by al-Tayalisi in his Musnad, with a sahih isnaad, that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Laylat al-Qadr is a pleasant night, neither hot nor cold, and the following day the sun rises red and weak.”(Sahih Ibn Khuzaymah, 2912; Musnad al-Tayalisi).
It was reported by al-Tabaraani with a hasan isnaad from the hadith of Wathilah ibn al-Asqa’ (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Laylat al-Qadr is a bright night, neither hot nor cold, in which no meteors are seen.” Narrated by al-Tabaraani in al-Kabeer. See Majma‘ al-Zawaa’id, 3/179; Musnad Ahmad).
I took off from work during the last nights of Ramadan so I could attempt to get this night and based on my research many of the nights and mornings match these descrptions where I live, so these signs further make my point that we should just do it for the entire 10 nights.
So inshaAllah the next Ramadan, if Allah let’s us all live to see another one (Ameen!), I plan on starting a 2nd Ramadan competition during the last 10 nights (along with the Qur’an reading competition) to keep track of the number of nights you sought after to get that powerful night. It will function the same way as the Qur’an competition except instead of number of ayat, just simply the number of nights you stayed up.