Ramadhan Thoughts

 

“The heart that loves Allah,
loves being exhausted and exerting itself for Allah;
surely, Allah’s love is not acquired through comfort!”
– Ibn Rajab, Majmoo’ ar-Rasaa’il

 

Many of us have really picked up the pace as we’re inching closer towards end of Ramadhan. But in that effort, perhaps many of us have also started to feel really tired and exhausted and struggling to keep up.

To the one who is struggling to read another page of the Qur’an, or forcing yourself to pray Taraweeh for one more night, or struggling to wake up to pray that extra raka’ats of Tahajjud, or whatever good deed that you’ve been striving to do – I ask you to turn your hearts to Allah SWT and say a heartfelt ‘Alhamdulillah’.

Alhamdulillah that our limbs and bodies are tired from fasting, from praying, from reciting the Qur’an and dhikr. Alhamdulillah that your very essence is exhausted from those charity work, or from those house chores that nobody wants to do. Alhamdulillah that some return to their beds for the night exhausted from misdeeds, but you return to your bed exhausted from good deeds with anticipation to do better tomorrow. Alhamdulillah that Allah SWT has enabled you to do all these things because there is no greater satisfaction than being exhausted from working for the sake of Allah.

It’s an indication of Iman to keep on striving these last few days and nights of Ramadhan.
If you have been doing well, then do well and do better.
If you haven’t had a chance to pray taraweeh at the masjid, then pray at home.
If you haven’t had a chance of a private moment due to obligations, then wake up earlier before your suhoor and have that moment of privacy with your Rabb.
The point is: Keep on working, keep on going.

May Allah SWT grant us physical and spiritual strength to keep on going until end of Ramadhan, and then beyond.

May Allah SWT accept all our good deeds and enable us to do more, for indeed we could not have done any single one of them without His help.

And may Allah SWT forgive all of our sins, for indeed we would be utterly destroyed if there’s even one single sin left unforgiven.

#KeepOnGoing

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Post-Ramadhan Musing

Taqabbal Allahu minna wa minkum! ❤

May Allah reward us with the gift of taqwa,
And may we all emerge from Ramadhan cleansed of our sins and our hearts healed.

Indeed, all good things come to an end except Jannah. And the pursuit of Jannah doesn’t end in Ramadhan. Allah s.w.t. says: “And worship your Rabb until there comes to you the certainty (i.e. death).” [Al-Hijr 15:99]

As Sheikh Omar Suleiman once said, Ramadhan is only mentioned once in the Quran, yet the other 11 months of the year revolve around it. Jumah is only mentioned once as well, yet the other 6 days revolve around it. Of the many lessons we take from this is that the life of a believer should revolve around Allah no matter what day of the week it is, or what month of the year it is. Ramadan and Jumah are simply two means of realizing that ultimate reality.

 

Ramadhan Gem – Day 29

When was the last time we shed tears in our salah, in our Qur’an recitation, or in our du’a to Allah? Ponder the following causes of an ill heart:

“There is no harder punishment than when the servant has a cruel heart and moves away from Allah.
If the heart was cruel, the eye will never shed tears.
Cruelty of the heart is caused by increasing four things over and above one’s needs: excessive food, sleep, talk, and socializing.
When the body is sick, food and drink is no use to it. Likewise when the heart is ill because of desires, advice is useless.
Whoever wants to purify his heart, must prefer Allah over and above his own desires.” [1]

Make sincere repentance in these last few hours of Ramadhan. I am reminded of an advice by Sheikh Omar Suleiman, may Allah preserve him, that we should try as much as possible to force a tear out in each of the last 10 nights or Ramadhan – even if we gotta fake it. Make our faces as if we’re crying until we actually start to cry.

Find that surah or ayah that really gets to us
ponder about its meanings
ponder about Jannah and Jahannam
about the sirat that all of us have to walk across
whether we will be among those who will receive our Book of Deed on the right hand
or whether we are among the ones who are doomed, who’ll receive on their left
ponder on the ayah when Allah s.w.t. Himself will say to those who are doomed: “Remain you in it with ignominy! And speak you not to Me!”
and ponder, in our current heedless state, whether we will truly be the ones when Allah s.w.t. says: “Some faces that Day shall be Nadirah (shining and radiant). Looking at their Rabb.”

Force just ONE tear out and then make du’a from the bottom of your heart, in hope and fear of Allah. For that one tear might be our one accepted deed that will save us on the Day of Judgment.
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[1] Ibn Al-Qayyim (rahimahullah) | Al-Fawwaid, P-176

Ramadhan Gem – Day 28

Depending on what part of the world you are in, you have anywhere from 1-3 days left of Ramadan. Many of us have regrets that we didn’t make the most of it. We may have had nights where we didn’t wake up for Qiyam, days in which we didn’t control our tongues properly, or spans of Ramadhan in which we slacked off with our Quran reading.

But now is not the time to cry. Nor is it the time to splurge in Eid shopping and act like the month is over. Reflect on this wonderful statement by Imam Ibn Rajab (RA) in his Lataaif:

“Let those who have failed to make the most of this month of Ramadan end it with good, because actions are judged by their endings.”

The last part of that statement about actions being judged by their endings is an authentic hadeeth and one that should give us much hope. Here’s my challenge:

1. Make this last day or two of Ramadan the BEST days you have spent all month and count on Allah to judge your entire Ramadan by that last day.

2. Spend these last Asr-Maghrib of Ramadan in reading Quran, supplication, and remembrance. If you can do I’itikaf (seclusion) for that last period in the masjid, do so. If not, then try to make it a time of peace, quiet, and reflection.

3. Cry your heart out in that supplication and ask Allah to forgive you for all of your shortcomings in the month and give you the full reward of Laylatul Qadr EVEN if you missed it.

May Allah allow us to finish this month strong. May we meet Allah s.w.t. completely forgiven, basking in His Mercy, freed from the gates of Hellfire, and registered in the highest level of Jannatul Firdaws.
Ameen!

– Sheikh Omar Suleiman (abbreviated)

Ramadhan Gem – Day 27

Increase your du’as in these last remaining days and nights of Ramadhan, and do not lose hope. Imam Sufyan ibn ‘Uyaynah (rahimahullah) said:

Don’t ever leave off making du’a, nor allow what (bad deeds) you commit to prevent you from it, for indeed Allah answered the du’a of Iblis and he is the most evil of creation (when he said to Allah):

“Grant me respite until the Day in which they will be resurrected.”
He (Allah s.w.t) said, “Indeed you are from those who are granted respite.” [Al-‘Araf: 7:14-15]
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Ash-Shu’ab, 2/1147

Ramadhan Gem – Day 26

The wisdom behind not knowing which exact night Laylatul Qadr falls upon ❤

Ibn Qudaamah Al-Maqdisee (rahimahullaah) said:

“Some of the people of knowledge said:
Allah The Most High made this night unapparent (obscure) upon the Ummah in order that they should strive hard in seeking after it; and that they should find aspiration in worship when seeking to attain it.

Just as He made the hour in which the supplication is answered on a Friday as unapparent – in order that they should be plentiful in making supplication throughout the day.

Just as He has made His Greatest Name unapparent from amongst His Names; and His Pleasure in varying forms of obedience – in order that they should strive hard in all of them.

Likewise He has made death and the establishment of The Hour as unapparent – in order that the people should earnestly endeavor in performing actions – out of caution from them both.” [1]
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[1] Mawsoo’ah Al-Fiqhiyyah vol 35 p.366
original reference can be found in Al-Mughnee vol 3 p.117