Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|05/18/01 at 23:43:38|
|as salaamu alaykum wa rahmatAllahi wabarakatuh,|
This is something I wrote for br. Mokhtar's class. We were assigned to write some reflections on the last couple of classes. [url=http://www.jannah.org/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.pl/YaBB.pl?board=masjid&action=display&num=3093]This[/url] is another sister's response to the same assignment.
This is really... honest. So don't make fun of it or anything.
I once dreamed that I was driving, the highway like a black silk ribbon laced through the desert. The sand was as white as powdered bones, still and stirred only by occasional wind. I was alone. The only sound I could hear was the hum of the engine and the murmur of something on the radio.
Suddenly, the clear blue sky turned black. Lightning flashed and thunderheads as black as ink wrote a promise of rain across the sky. The clouds were so thick, so black, that daylight on the desert was as murky as that deep under the sea. Thunder crackled and boomed, and then rain poured down, pounding on sand, the pavement, bouncing off my car as it began to slide. The car flipped over. I am screaming.
I jerk awake, shaken, trembling, with tears streaming down my face. What was that? What does this mean? I brood in the darkness of my room, staring blankly as dawn extinguishes the last of the darkness outside. I force myself up and make wudu with the coldest water possible, thinking about what this dream means.
A few weeks ago we learned that everyone will be resurrected the way he or she died, and therefore the way he/she lived. This is something truly frightening to me. I can imagine myself being resurrected, knowing the last action of my life was sleeping through fajr. I know that the first action I will be asked about is my salah, and in it I have so much deficiency. Therefore, salah is what I have been working on. I’ve been struggling to establish my salah, meaning that I force myself to go and perform it, on time, no matter where I am and who I am with, and have it consciously on my mind at all times. I've been struggling to make my wudu well and with focus, to have my heart present in the salah and sit in dhikr and contemplation afterwards, along with the sunnah salah. I won’t lie to you and say that it has been easy. But I remember hearing someone quote a man who said, I made qiyaamul layl all of my life, and after fourty years I began to enjoy it. I know that if I continue to do this and really work and struggle to have khushoo’ and have my heart present in salah I will, inshaAllah, taste the sweetness so many speak of that comes with true ibadah.
We learned last week of a single brain cell that can store all that an individual has done, thought, and felt. Each of these noble cells stores information independent from the body and in a way that is not changed by time or place. Upon reflection, this can only serve to reaffirm our conviction that all of our deeds, thoughts, and feelings are recorded, and from this we can see that indeed, our very cells may be able to bear witness against us because they have been programmed with this capacity to record information. These cells also consciously respond and react to events or experiences based on the way the individual the cells belongs to used to respond. In relation to heesab and punishment, these cells indicate that we actually house within us the potential for punishment or reward. These cells respond at certain times and situations the way their owners used to respond – so when the time for salah, or ramadhan, or a time of sin comes upon these cells, even after we die – it is possible for them to “communicate” to us through pulses anguish and grief, or happiness and contentment. We actually have within us, within these cells the capacity to taste the punishment or reward that will come after death, based upon how we’ve chosen to live our lives.
That dream I had a few nights ago made me reflect upon many of the things we discussed in class. I understand now how quickly death can come to me. As steadily as my heart beats, it can stop at any moment. Death can come to me as quickly as water streaming under a car’s tires. Reflecting upon this, I think there is something I fear more than dying young. It is [i]not[/i] dying young. It is living an entire life, another thirty or forty years, in the same wretched condition, my heart dark with disease, my nafs burdened with sin. Then dying, having wasted an entire lifetime of opportunity to return to Allah with a qalbus saleem. And then having to stand before Him, the Most High, the Most Merciful, knowing I did nothing to help myself, knowing that I deserve nothing but the punishment I will receive. Having to stand before Him, the All Knowing, with no excuses, with no defense for my actions, truly bankrupt. Feeling nothing but remorse, pain, regret, shame, and wishing that I were dust.
I am struggling, and I will continue to struggle, to return to Him pleasing to Him as this is the purpose of my life. I am sick of my relentless nafs and my unmerciful haawa being my leaders and marching me straight into the hellfire. I am fighting to take control of my life, and it is so difficult. But I’m going to keep struggling, keep fighting, keep working, because I know that I have no other option. This is the purpose of my life, this is the goal I need to fulfill, and anything less will bring me nothing but pain and unhappiness in this life, in the barzakh, and in the hereafter. Therefore, I will live my life, inshaAllah, to the best of my ability, in fighting, in struggling, in tahqeequl ubudiyyah.
|05/18/01 at 11:41:18|
That was a very beautiful account and extremely honest. It is good to reflect on death, because we don't know when our time will come. Attend funerals and prepare the bodies for the grave. Visit the families of the deceased and offer to help them. It'll help to give you an idea of what to expect, what to prepare for, and and what to do.
Indeed time does go by quickly, and we need to make the most of it, insha'Allah.
|re: Corpse speaking to the grave|
|05/18/01 at 17:14:57|
|Bhaloo, i agree with u cent percent.|
Today's lifestyle has robbed us from attending such events. Leaving aside its social role, the vent should stimulate within us the reality that is going to dawn upon each one of us.
Allahumma hawwin alayna sakaraathil mauth!
Just remembered one ghazal that picturises the corpse saying to the grave:
"aaj hi hum nahaaye huwe hai, aaj hi hum badale hai Kapade...
Taaza rakh na paaye kafan ko"
which can be read as:
- O grave! I have just come after a bath, I have just adorned new clothes... don't spoil them with u'r mud!
Death! Nothing so sweet, nothing so bitter.
|05/18/01 at 23:01:11|
|Jazaka Allah Khair sister for sharing your thoughts. It brought tears to my eyes-it was all too real. |
I sometimes feel so depressed because of the obligations I have before Allah-but that I seriously lack in. It's a struggle. I felt that for years I had an understanding of Islam but I am realizing now that I was just arrogant and that really, I have barely scratched the surface when it comes to seeing Islam for the beauty that it is as a way of life. I want now to so badly comprehend Islam as the companions did and the scholars do. I say and think I fear Allah--but do I really? I don't know. I really don't know where to begin sometimes. Death is the ultimate reality. I know that I will die and will one day lie in a grave and will one day stand before Allah. We all will and I hope that one day, Muslims will again be able to help one another towards goodness and righteousness. La howla wala qowata illa billah...
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