Thursday, July 21, 2011

Ramadan, an Opportunity


Lesson 1: Gaining taqwa (fear of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala)


Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala legislated fasting for gaining taqwa, "O you who believe fasting has been prescribed upon you as it has been prescribed upon those before you, so that you may attain taqwa." (meaning of Sooratul Baqarah (2):138) Tawqa in this case means, to make a shield between oneself and Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala's anger and hellfire. So we should ask ourselves, when we break our fasts, 'Has this fasting day made us fear Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala more ? Has it resulted that we want to protect ourselves from the hellfire ?'


Lesson 2: Drawing us closer to Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala


This is achieved by reciting and reflecting on Al-Qur'an during the night and the day, attending the taraveeh prayers, remembering Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala and his prophet Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallam, Also for those who can, making itikaf (seclusion) in the last ten days of Ramadan, However, the obedient worshipper feels closer to Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala and wants to worship Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala more, because Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'alaforgives and is merciful.


Lesson 3: Acquiring patience and strong will


Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala has mentioned patience more than seventy times in the Qur'an and has commanded patience in more than sixteen ways in His Book. So when one fasts, and gives up one's food and drink, for those hours, one learns restraint and patience.


Lesson 4: Striving for ihsan (righteousness & sincerity) and staying away from riyaa' (showing off)


Ihsan means to worship Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala as if one sees Him, for if one does not see Him, So when one is fasting, one should gain this quality of watching oneself and also staying away from riyah (showing off). That is why Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala said in a qudsi hadith, "..Fasting is for Me and I will reward it.." (Bukhari) Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala singles out fasting from all other types of worship saying, "..Fasting is for Me..", because no one knows whether you are fasting or not, except Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala.


Lesson 5: Refinement of manners, especially those related to truthfulness and discharging trusts.


The Beloved Prophet Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallam said,"Whoever does not abandon falsehood in word and action, then Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala has no need that he should leave his food and drink." (Bukhari) And the Prophet Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallam said,"It may be that a fasting person attains nothing but hunger and thirst from his fast." (Ibn Majah) What we learn from this, is that we must pay attention to the purification of our manners. The Prophet Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallamsaid,"I was sent to perfect good manners." (Muwatta)


Lesson 6: Recognising that one can change for the better


The Prophet Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallam said,"Every son of Adam sins and the best of the sinners are those who repent." (Ibn Majah) Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala provides many opportunities to repent to Him and seek His forgiveness. If one was disobedient they can become obedient.


Lesson 7: Being more charitable


Ibn Abbas Radi Allahu anhu said,"The Prophet Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallam is the most charitable amongst the people, and he used to be more so in the month of Ramadan when Gibreel alayhis 'salam used to meet him on every night of Ramadan till the end of the month. The Prophet Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallam said, "He who gives food for a fasting person to break his fast, he will receive the same reward as him, without nothing being reduced from the fasting person's reward." (Tirmidhi )




Lesson 8: Sensing the unity of the Muslims


The Prophet Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallam said, "...Those of you who will live after me, will see many differences. Then you must cling on to my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the rightly guided khalifah. Hold fast to it and stick to it.." (Abu Dawud) It is possible for Muslims to be a single body, but this will only be achieved when obedience is only to Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala and His Rasool Salla Allahu 'alayhi wa Sallam one senses unity, because the Muslims pray and fast together.

"Women should not be like the moon which everyone can see uncovered; women should be like the sun which makes eyes bow down before they can see it"

When I stand before God at the end of my life,
I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left,
and could say, "I used everything you gave me."

 Zuni Ayesha

muslim hereafter and till the end - FB page.


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