27 Ramadan 2014: “Let Days Go Forth”

Let Days Go Forth

Let days go forth and do as they please
And remain firm when settled is the Decree

Don’t be afraid of what happens by night
For the affairs of this world are not to last

And be a man, strong in the face of calamities
And let your nature be that of kindness and honesty

If your faults become too much in front of the people
And you wish that they were to be concealed,

Then know that kindness covers all faults
And how many faults are kept hidden by kindness!

No sadness lasts forever, nor any happiness
And you shall not remain in poverty, or any luxury

Generosity cannot be hoped from the miserly
For no water exists in the Fire for the thirsty

Your provision will not be lessened due to life’s delays
And it cannot be increased due to your haste

If, in your heart, you possess contentment
Then you and those who possess the world are equal

And for him upon whose horizon death descends,
No earth can offer him protection, nor any sky

Indeed, the earth of Allah is certainly vast
But if decree descends, then decree is constricted

Let days be the ones that betray you at all times
For no cure can avail a person of death

– Imam Al-Shafi’i (RA)

Advertisements

24 Ramadan 2014: There is no such thing as …

Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself, and know that everything in life has purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences, all events are blessings given to us to learn from. – Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

R24

I cannot tell you how often I have wondered about the power of god in shaping our lives. We do have freewill, but at the same time, the set of circumstances we are under are quite interesting. While I may think I know something with certainty, chances are, I don’t know much. All I know, and all I am, is in control of my own choices and decisions in certain places and situations.

The result of this is that no matter what the situation is, sometimes when I want to make a certain decision something practically stops me, and instead of wallowing ‘why me’ and ‘why not’, I wonder, what is the good that is to come out of this? Am I being saved from another disaster? Am I being taught a valuable lesson I need to be aware of for the future? To me, and I never ask for any tough challenges in my life or anyone else’s of course, but when they do come, I want to try to think about the positive thing that comes out of a situation I may not be able to call all the shots to.

May…

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,

The courage to change the things I can,

And wisdom to know the difference. – Reinhold Niebuhr

Image courtesy of thepathtraveler / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

22 Ramadan 2014: What lasts?

“A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.” – C.S. Lewis

R22

2Think about it? Has any wealth ever lasted for anyone? Has any health ever lasted for anyone? Has your life been free of any sad moments? Has your life been free of any calamities? Has anyone ever stayed alive?

The point is when all these changing matters go on in one’s life, any intelligent and logical person could see that no one and nothing ever lasts but what we do know is that there is an end. It is too illogical for for our lives to end just there, in fact, I would say it is even unjust as those who suffered in life must somehow see happiness and those who did made bad choices must somehow pay for their wrongdoings. so there must be something afterwards and whatever that something is, it must be the only stable thing lasting throughout the generations of human kind.

To me, this only thing is god and in his grace and mercy, is the one who lets the sun rise and sun set, the trees grow and the clouds rain. Never in the life of humanity has anyone been able to get to the core of creation without relying on any other creation, for example, if one places a seed in the earth to grow an apple tree, one needs to water it to grow. So where did the seed come from? Another pre-existing apple? and so on … so when was the first seed???? it had to come from somewhere that existed in the beginning and that will exist in the end.

May god make us see all the signs of continuity and discontinuity in life and be able to learn from them in being able to live a happier and more serene life.

Image courtesy of lobster20 / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

20 Ramadan 2014: Normalise

Being challenged in life is inevitable, being defeated is optional. -Roger Crawford

R20

Life is a series of good and bad, ease and difficulty, abundance and limitation, happiness and sadness, health and sickness … have you ever seen anything else? So if life is a cycle of changes, what does that mean? It cannot mean that it is an outcome, for if it is an outcome, why do people who do a lot of good deeds and charity face hardships? Or why do people who do bad deeds get good things? It wouldn’t seem logical. Yes, some of the outcomes are as a result of our own actions, but not all.

When looking at scholarly work in the holy book, what comes across is ‘tests’. All these states test our beliefs and values. These tests test our ability to reflect and learn until we reach a place where the cyclical change becomes the norm, recognizing and passing each test as it comes along for eternal success. How? By thanking god when good comes and using the blessings to do good … By not complaining, blaming or arguing when bad comes and seek help from god to help us through.

May god help us during this blessed month and these last few nights to have the strength to ‘normalise’ our good and bad times not feeling arrogant when I have it better than others and not feeling depressed and jealous when others have it better than me … for life is a cycle.

Image courtesy of ponsulak / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

15 Ramadan 2014: Treasure within our Reach

“The greatest treasures are those invisible to the eye but found by the heart.” – Maryanne Williamson

R15

Clearly this is a blog related to Ramadan, which in itself is a festive and spiritual time full of goodness and blessings. Whichever faith one belongs to, most often forget about a treasure that is within reach – the book of god.

Reflecting on the quote above revealed something interesting, although the words of god are written in books and are literally now found everywhere and within the reach of anyone, it is not the words that really matter as much as how the heart moves and gets affected by those words. The month of Ramadan is known to be a month that most dedicate more of their time to read god’s words, hoping to uncover treasures and secrets of the world we live in as relayed to us by the creator himself.

May this Ramadan give all of us the opportunity to uncover secrets to this world that bring us joy and calm, health and wealth, love and harmony, peace of heart and peace of mind.

Image courtesy of Stoonn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

13 Ramadan 2014: Make Peace

“The best peace agreement you can enter into is one you make with god, yourself and those around you” – Ramadan Living Blogger

R13

I don’t know about you, but I sure feel like there hasn’t been a more opportune and desperate time to make peace. Before we start looking at how others should make peace with each other, the question to ask is, have I made peace with god? with myself? with those around me?

What does peace mean? It does not necessarily mean a specific outer appearance, but it is an internal state. A state of comfort and satisfaction. Satisfaction that god’s rights, your own rights and the rights of others have been fulfilled or at least, you are trying to fulfill them. These include prayer, reflection, doing good, enjoining good, advising others, smiling to others, accepting ourselves talents and faults, accepting the choices we make and accept the destinies that have pre-ordained for us after we have the comfort of knowing that we have tried our best.

And once that is all in the clear, then one can look at what others are doing.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

6 Ramadan 2014: Choices

In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our responsibility. – Eleanor Roosevelt

R2Whether one chooses to learn or not, to help others or not, to believe or not, to be the best we can be or not … whatever choice we make is something that we may, one day, rejoice or regret.

We make choices based on many factors, one of which is, that we will be judged on our deeds and intentions, so we need to make them count and funny enough, they are the same deeds and intentions that can influence the good and the bad that comes our way during our lives.

We all choose … and there is freewill, and we must be ready to, one day, justify our choices and as a result, our lives.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

27 Ramadan 2013: Hope

We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope. – Martin Luther King, Jr.

RL27

We have a very short post today … a post about hope …

… for ourselves in that we continue to improve in seeking “serenity, courage and wisdom”

… for others in that we continue to aid, and not be a barrier, in their own improvement in seeking “serenity, courage and wisdom”

… for all that we find what it is we are seeking in these last few precious nights in this blessed month

Image courtesy of dan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

19 Ramadan 2013: 20/20 Vision

All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us. – J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

RL19

I am a fan of the Lord of the Rings … yes I am and every Ramadan seems to bring up this awesome quote that serves to explain in as few words as possible, why we (as people) are here on earth.

We all have a time on earth … but it is a time that is unknown to us. Then there is Ramadan … a time that is, contrary to that, known to all of us. As we prepare for the last third of this very short month, the third of salvation, one can’t help but look for inspiration to give our best during this limited and precious time.

This blessed month is known to be abundant in blessings, goodness, increase, generosity, peace, tranquility and forgiveness. However, there are externalities that come in to disjoint this reality or overshadow it or limit our exposure and absorption of these abundances.

Although as an example, the violence and bloodshed that continues to take place in our world todaycan make one forget about the essence of this beautiful month, it is life itself that is the biggest risk to our 20/20 vision.

We are all so busy running, planning, doing, moving, and thinking at such a high pace that our brains tend to go into a state of ‘trance’ which can overshadow our sights and reduce our ability to see truth and our destined roles in life.

In this post, we ask god to bless us all with the clarity of mind and vision to open our hearts to greatly benefit from the last 10 days of this blessed month without letting externalities get in the way of salvation and great love from the one and only majestic lord.

Image courtesy of coward_lion at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

16 Ramadan 2013: To the One and Only

Low self-esteem causes me to believe that I have so little worth that my response does not matter. With repentance, however, I understand that being worth so much to God is why my response is so important. Repentance is remedial work to mend our minds and hearts, which get bent by sin. – John Ortberg Jr.

RL16

This post is dedicated to he who is our creator. This post is dedicated to he who bestows blessings on us that cannot be counted or valued. This post is dedicated to he who allows us to do right and do wrong and each time go back to him in repentance and be accepted in all our being. This post is dedicated to he who nothing, absolutely nothing in this world, is like him.

As we enter into the last few nights of the third of forgiveness, we seek forgiveness for every breath that was wasted without sincerity to him and we seek forgiveness for every act that was not full of goodness. We seek forgiveness for the times our tongues and minds said or thought something that was not in his pleasure and we seek forgiveness for thinking less of him when his love for us exceeds the love of a mother or parent to her or his child.

Whether in the Quran, the equivalent of the Torah and Bible, prophets, PBUH or companion sayings, whenever guidance was sought on matters, it was frequently advised to “seek forgiveness .. seek forgiveness .. seek forgiveness”.

We ask on this blessed night, repentance and forgiveness for ourselves, others, and all of humanity from the one and only God Almighty.

Image courtesy of bigjom at FreeDigitalPhotos.net