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July 19, 2012

Ramadan 2012 Prep Tip #4: Milk it for all it’s worth…

by Umm Muawiyah

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamu Alaikum.

Yes, that title might sound highly unusual.

It’s an English saying which means making the most out of an opportunity.

Imagine if you went to a park and found lots of little gold coins on the ground. What would you do?

Well, you know what you’d do. You’d try to pick up as many coins as possible.

Imagine if you went to a food exhibition and they were offering free fruits. [Ironically, this actually happened here once!] What would you do?

You’d try to get your hands on as many fruits as you possibly could, that’s would you’d do.

Okay, that’s what we do with gold coins and fruits. What do many people do with regards to Ramadan?

It’s Shaban 29th. Maghrib comes.

Nobody is sure if it’s Ramadan or not.

Most people just twiddle their thumbs and wait for the announcement, instead of realising that they should increase in their ibaadah  (worship) as Ramadan might have already started. And if not, then at least this will help them prepare for it.

What happens once people know that it’s Ramadan? Well, for many people, nothing happens. They wait until the next day to start fasting because they think that this is when Ramadan begins.

Then they proceed to be very active in the first few days and do taraweeh every night.

After that? Well, many people tend to drop off the radar only to return in time for the 27th night.

Then on the 29th of Ramadan after Maghrib, everyone twiddles their thumbs yet again waiting for an Eid announcement, not realising that if it’s still Ramadan (i.e. it’s not Eid the next day), they need to make use of its final hours.

The minutes of Ramadan are more precious than those gold coins so why do we treat them like nothing???

We need to use our time wisely – right from the beginning of Ramadan until the end, when the moon of Shawwal is spotted.

We need to remember to use the mornings and the nights for good deeds.

We need to pace ourselves so that we steadily increase in worship throughout the month and peak in the last ten nights.

We need to make the best out of every situation whether it is at work, in the car, in the kitchen, in university, etc.

The amazing thing about our purpose of life (i.e worshipping Allah alone) is that we can do it anywhere, at any time, in any circumstance, and in any age. [This is one of the main purposes of Ramadan –  to remind us of our purpose in life and to remind us to use our time in pursuing this goal.]

So, we should use every opportunity possible.

In the car? Listen to a nice Islamic lecture.

Stuck in a queue? Do istighfar (seek forgiveness).

Stuck in the kitchen? Do tasbeeh (say “subhan Allah”).

At work? Well, do your work properly and in a good way, knowing that we’ve been commanded to do all things well.

At university? Same as above.

Got stuck in a conversation with your elderly highly-talkative neighbour whom you find very annoying? Talk to them politely and remember that neighbours have rights and that we’ve been commanded to be good to the elderly. This conversation will then turn into an act of worship (I’m assuming that the neighbour is of the same gender as you) and will be a witness for you instead of being a witness against you.

In short: Milk every minute for what it’s worth. In this Ramadan and even beyond that.

Perhaps Ramadan has already begun for some of you (it hasn’t where I am).

Ramadan Mubarak to all of you.

May Allah grant us tawfeeq (guidance) in this great month.

PS. After much thought, I’ve decided to blog only for the first 7 days and then stop for the rest of Ramadan. That’s because I spent far too much time blogging the last two Ramadans and did not spend enough time with the Quran.So this year, I’m going to be rectifying that, insha-Allah.

I’ll be continuing with the Lords of the Worlds series as promised but just for the first 7 days, insha-Allah.

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