“Allahumma Bariek Lana fie Rajab
wa Sha’baan wa Baliegna Ramadan”
[Surah Al-Baqara verse 185].
“Ramadhān is the (month) In which was sent down The Qur-ān, as a guide to mankind,
also clear (Signs) for guidance and judgment (Between right and wrong). So every one of you who is present (at his home) during that month should spend it in fasting, but if any one is ill, or on a journey, the prescribed period (Should be made up) by days later. Allah intends every facility for you; He does not want to put you to difficulties. (He wants you) to complete the prescribed period, and to glorify Him in that He has guided you; And perchance ye shall be grateful.”
Alhumdulillah! The countdown has already begun. The first day of Ramadan is likely to fall on Saturday May 27th Insha’Allah (subject to the physical sighting of the Ramadan Hilal). This means that we have just a few days left in order to prepare ourselves to welcome the Holy and auspicious month of Ramadan. The very name of Ramadan evokes a feeling of expectant joy and pleasure in the heart of a Muh’min. A restlessness overtakes a Muh’min from the beginning of Rajab in eager anticipation of this most Holy month.
Sometimes, this feeling even turns to fear and anxiety. “O Almighty Allah Rabbul Ala’meen, will I see Ramadan this year?” Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata’ala Alone knows who will live to see Ramadan. The reassurance comes in the form of a fervent Duah: “Allahumma Barik Lana fie Rajab wa Sha’baan Wa baliegna Ramadan.” “O Allah bless us in Rajab and Sha’baan and let us make it to Ramadan.” The Dua’h for this must continue with vigorous fervour – “O Almighty Subhanahu Wata’ala Allah! Through Your Infinite Mercy and Bounty let us reach Ramadan so that we may partake of it’s Blessings and Baraka’h.”
The anticipation of this great month is not just a matter of emotion and thought. It requires action and activity. Preparation for receiving the honorable guest of Ramadan must start in earnest right away at the start of Rajab and throughout the month of Sha’baan. Where do I start? What am I to do? What should I not do? Well, a good starting point will be to spare a bit of time daily for preparing yourself for Ramadan. A person starts off by making adjustments to his or her current lifestyles. The daily timetable must be altered, allowing more time for spiritual rejuvenation.
Can I take out quality time from my present busy lifestyle? How much of time and when? Sit down and work it out. Maybe half an hour before Salatul Fajr and another half-hour before going to bed? Or will half an hour after Salatul Taraweeh be more appropriate? Whatever it may be, at least an hour out of 24 hours must be set aside with discipline and consistency from today onwards. This is time dedicated to Almighty Allah Azza Wajjal alone. Unless for an emergency, no intrusion in this time must be allowed – no distractions. This time should be spent in developing a strong bond of love and affinity with the Most Noble and Glorious Qur’an, with Dua’h and Zikr. Time must be spent in introspection and self-appraisal.
What is my current state of Islam? Strong or weak? What are my weaknesses? How do I overcome these? Who do I turn to for spiritual help and guidance? Deep, soul-searching questions have to be posed. This is one of the highest form of Ibadat. It is the Ibadat of Fikr or Tafakkur, a moment of which equals many years of Nafl Ibadat. It is indeed very easy to rationalize laziness, to make and offer excuses for missing Salaat and not getting up in time for Salatul Fajr. That, my beloved brothers and sisters is the starting point and the Jihad-ul-Akbar that we must all undertake to bring about the change in our condition that Almighty Allah Subahanahoo Wata’ala talks about.
So, beginning with each and every one of us, as individuals, we begin to develop our characters and our strength so that we abandon those things which are taking us to a dead end. Indeed, the self-discipline which is needed to perform Salaat regularly and at the proper times – and to carry on these prayers in the early morning hours when sleep is so attractive, during the busy daylight hours when one is preoccupied with work and during the late afternoon and early evening when one is preoccupied with family and other activities and at night when one is tired and want to relax or sleep – reaffirms a Muh’min’s total dependence on the Glorious Creator and Sustainer and his or her position as His slave.
There are many forces that are actively engaged in dissuading us from pursuing the Right Path. The dark forces of life make human beings the target of their negative intentions when they are on the Right Path. The greatest onslaught of Shaytaan against man is also launched on the Straight Path that is evidenced by the Most Noble Qur’an itself. Shaytaan Lanatullahi Alay challenged Almighty Allah without mincing matters: “I will assuredly lie in wait on Your Straight Path to misguide the people.” In this verse, Shaytaan has thrown the gauntlet to Almighty Allah Tabaraqa Wata’ala. However, it is an indirect confrontation with Almighty Allah because He is above the machinations of the accursed Shaytaan who can wreak harm on those people who are on the Right Path.
Beloved people of Imaan! Shaytaan is not worried about those who have already strayed from their purpose and fallen into his clutches. When we observe the special conditions attached to the great month of Glory, we find that fasting is a powerful means to free us from bondage to psychic cravings, whims, and lusts and to cleanse the spirit of the pollution of sinning. Fasting cultivates a vigilant and sound conscience because a fasting person keeps his or her fast in secret as well as in public.
The month of Ramadan is a month to purify our intentions, to rectify our deeds, and to expel the love of self and position from our hearts. After all, the entire Doonya and whatever exists in it along with its superficial aspects is not worth a single penny in comparison to the station for the righteous servants of Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata’ala. Are we then prepared to obtain such a position with our good deeds this Ramadan? Can it be reached by the path we tread? Is there any likelihood of being saved from Divine chastisement and escaping the terrible torment of Jahannum?
Ramadan teaches us to suppress our anger while we have the power to give vent to it because Almighty Allah Most Merciful shall fill the heart of such a person with peace and faith on the Day of Resurrection. These eyes and ears which are under our control, this hand and tongue which are at our command, these organs and limbs with which we live, all have been entrusted to us by our Most Exalted Creator and Maker, and were given to us in perfect purity and righteousness. If they are afflicted with sin, they become polluted. If, Allah forbid, they are polluted with that which is forbidden, wickedness results.
Ummatul Muslimeen! When the time comes to return the trust, we will be questioned as to whether we protected the trust that was given to us. When the trust was placed under our control, was it like this? Was the heart given to us like this? Were the eyes, ears, hands, other organs and limbs that were placed at our will this polluted and filthy? How will we answer? How will we meet our Most Glorious Maker when we are guilty of having committed such treachery with regard to that which we have been entrusted? We are human and limited in our understanding.
O you who believe! Instead of telling Almighty Allah what we want, we should try to ask what it is that He wants for us, or wants us to do, in each situation. Sometimes He gives a very clear indication of what it is He wants us to do through inner conviction, through a verse of the Most Holy Qur’an, or an insight given through another person. When we are less certain, we can pray for what seems to be the best solution, acknowledging that Almighty Allah’s wisdom is perfect.
Finally, all the “T’s” of Ramadan Shareef must be kept in mind so that when Ramadan comes, “everything is to the T!”. These “T’s” are: Tilawat, Tuhajjud, Taraweeh, Tasbeehat, Tadharru’ (fervent Dua), Tatawwu’ (Nafil Ibadat), Tasahhur (partaking Suhoor/ Sehri), Taubah (repentance), Tawadhu (humility) and Tafakkur (contemplation). May Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata’ala make this Ramadan a turning point in the life of the long-suffering Ummah. Insha’Allah – Ameen!
And Almighty Allah knows best.
And Peace be upon those who follow the Guidance.
The Truth is from Almighty Allah. The errors are all mine and
I stand to be corrected.
Baarak Allaahu Feekum wa-sal-Allaahu wa-Sallam ‘alaa
Nabiyyinaa Muhammad Sallallahoo Alayhi Wasallam.
Was Salamualaykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuhu
Abdul Hamid Lachporia
Please be advised that you are more that welcomed to use and share
my Khutbah’s for propagational purposes without my prior consent.
|جَزَاكُمُ اللَّهُ خَيْرًا|