Ramadan Reflection

My Ramadan Reflection for 2012

By Tazkia Al-Bari

 

When I first found out that Ramadan was only a few weeks away, I did not pay any mind to it. I thought that I would just read Quran and continue what I was doing regularly because I did not think there was anything wrong with my behavior. I woke up, went to work, came home, did homework, watched TV or cleaned the house and went to sleep. I slipped in prayer between those activities and sometimes recitated the Quran.

However, when Ramadan was finally here, I realized that it was not the big activities that I needed to concern myself with, it was the little things in between. I would argue with my family about petty little things; yell at my brother for coming into my room without my permission, argue with my mom about God knows what, and get frustrated at my father for pestering me about completing college applications. I would not clean my room until my mom yelled at me to do it. When Ramadan came in, I understood that the shaytan was locked up and my sins were only committed from the desires of my heart. I began to notice these little things, my constant bickering with my family and my lack of empathy for cleanliness and obligations. Suddenly my mistakes did not seem so little anymore.

Ramadan truly is a month of reflections and noticing one’s faults. Although I read Quran and prayed taraweeh, that was not the plain idea behind fasting. Allah expects His servants to perform those actions without question. The compassion for others’ feelings and the idea of how a believer should behave is the real reason why Allah made fasting obligatory. He wanted us to look within our hearts and dig out our deepest nafs and try to fix the problems within our souls.

It may sound spiritual and boring but its not the truth. We live in a society where our faith is constantly questioned and tested. We either follow the way of Allah or the shaitan; there is no middle. Ramadan was sent to remind believers that Allah’s Grace is limitless and to realize that as true believers, we are to fulfill our duties and obligations without question.

For this Ramadan, I had to be honest with myself and question my true intentions. I had to learn self-restraint and patience. But most importantly, I had to let my mind comprehend the usefulness of Ramadan and use its benefits to my full advantage.  

Omar Suleiman – The Night of Your Life : Tafseer of Surah al-Qadr

By: Sajeda Ahmed

إِنَّا أَنزَلْنَاهُ فِي لَيْلَةِ ٱلْقَدْرِ
وَمَآ أَدْرَاكَ مَا لَيْلَةُ ٱلْقَدْرِ
لَيْلَةُ ٱلْقَدْرِ خَيْرٌ مِّنْ أَلْفِ شَهْرٍ
تَنَزَّلُ ٱلْمَلاَئِكَةُ وَٱلرُّوحُ فِيهَا بِإِذْنِ رَبِّهِم مِّن كُلِّ أَمْرٍ
سَلاَمٌ هِيَ حَتَّىٰ مَطْلَعِ ٱلْفَجْرِ
“We have indeed revealed this (message) on the Night of Power: And what will explain to you what the Night of Power is? The Night of Power is better than a thousand months. Therein come down the Angels and the Spirit (Jibreel) by Allah’s permission, on every errand: Peace! This until the rise of Morn!”                                   (Surah al-Qadr)

For many Muslims around the world, the crowning jewel of Ramadan is worshiping during Laylatul Qadr, the Night of Power. Allah (SWT) tells us in the Quran that it was on this night Angel Jibreel (Gabriel) came with the Revelation of the Quran to our Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him).

In “The Night of Your Life – Tafseer of Surah al-Qadr” Sheikh Omar Suleiman discusses several interesting aspects of this night that are not as well known. This lecture is especially refreshing for those of us who would like to learn something new about the Night of Power that we have never knew before.

Link

Qiyam on remembrance of God

Last night the Young Sisters held an all night of “standing” in worship, or qiyam, following Tarawih prayer.

Tarawih is the recommended prayer during Ramadan nights. It is prayed in two rakat, or units up to 20 total units.

About 13 girls came to the qiyam to discuss the forms and ways to do dhikr, remember Allah. For example, praying, reciting praises, and reading Quran are various types of dhikr. The later part of the night was used to speak of Allah’s Mercy, pray Tahajjud optional prayers, read the scripture for Muslims, the Quran and snack.

Allah says in an authentic hadith, a saying revealed to the Prophet Muhammad,

“O son of Adam, as long as you call upon Me and put your hope in Me, I have forgiven you for what you have done and I do not mind. O son of Adam, if your sins were to reach the clouds of the sky and then you would seek My forgiveness, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, if you were to come to Me with sins that are close to filling the earth and then you would meet Me without ascribing any partners with Me, I would certainly bring to you forgiveness close to filling it.”

Muslims are encouraged to seek Allah’s forgiveness, be hopeful of His Mercy and understand His punishment.

Iftar Party August 5

Muslim Ummah of North America’s Michigan chapter will have an iftar party tomorrow Sunday, August 5, starting at 7:15 p.m. at Masjid Al-Falah.

Women will be seated in the main masjid complex, while men will sit in the auditorium.

Families are encouraged to join for programs and iftar.

Ramadan Reflections: Helping Out

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I organized a volunteer event for my Young Sisters of MUNA Detroit at Zaman International, a humanitarian organization located in Dearborn, Michigan on July 14. The organization was founded by Muslim nurse Najah Bazzy.

Zaman is an organization dedicated to bringing hope to humanity through all kinds of events. From feeding the hungry, to providing international help such as their project to aid victims of violence in Syria, Zaman is always ready to help make the world a better place.

Every year Zaman hosts a Ramadan food packing event where various volunteer groups from all over Michigan gather to create big, family sized boxes filled with food necessities to give out to struggling families who aren’t fortunate enough to afford basic food for iftar, or breaking the fast.

This year I decided to get the Young Sisters affiliated with Zaman through this volunteer event and Mashallah it went very well. Tazkia, Taslima, Aysha, Nasrin, and Sharmin and I made time to participate in this wonderful volunteer opportunity. Sharmin’s mother Najma Auntie, was kind enough to drive us all the way to Dearborn.

When we got there, packets of food were scattered everywhere but by the end of the day we were able to get all that food into neat organized boxes ready to be delivered to the needy families. Although we were all tired from a long day of work, we all felt amazing inside that we helped create food boxes that will be making a great difference in people’s lives. Participating in this event just days before Ramadan really helped us prepare our hearts and minds for the holy month. It made us remember that Muslims have a duty to help those in need in this world and the best time to help out is during the holy month. The experience was a day full of fun, hard work which provided me with a sense of satisfaction that Allah (SWT) will be happy we helped make food boxes which will fill people’s stomach and make them very grateful.

For more information on Zaman International visit http://www.zamaninternational.org/.

–Farjana Alam