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Ramadhan

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Of Flames & the Night.

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​The scariest part

Of it all

Was not seeing the bad in me,

But watching myself

Yearn

For that sin

One more time…

Maybe there never was a devil…

Maybe monsters

Are a

Reflection

Of our true selves…

Maybe I spent too much time

Close to the fire

That I never noticed

How much

Darker

It had made me…

To me,

It was light,

But for the flame,

I was just

Another pile

Of wood,

Waiting to

Burn.

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THE MONTH OF MONTHS

My heart sings with joy
The month of months has arrived
For many have yearned for it
But not all have survived

Such euphoria I get
When the warm air of my lungs
Caress my dry lips in supplication
As I pray the taraweh

In this miraculous month
Even the crooked find their way
Rich or poor no eating in the day
What a precious month I say

In it the night of nights
The night to better a thousand months
A night peaceful in nature
In it Quran descended to the greatest teacher

In it mosques fill to the brim
And everyone seems to be in the same team
We share, we care
Satan is chained he can only stare…

Photo Courtesy: http://www.khilafah.com

People who know me very well know two truths about me. One is that food and I don’t get along. Truth number two, food and I can’t really stay apart. We tend to have this love-hate relationship that never ends. You know, like Tom and Jerry? So most of the times it would roll out like this.

Me: “Aarghh, I’m starviingg” or “Yeepyyy can’t wait to have my delicious food!”

Two minutes into eating: “Really food? Really? All that joy, excitement, tears, anticipation and blood sacrifice yet this is all you offer?!! You and I are soo done!”

Also me: (every two hours) “I need you food 🙁 ” (There should have been the kermit meme image over here lol)

So automatically, truth number three is that fasting is my hardest ibadah.

Just the other day (4th of Ramadhan) I was walking in town headed home from work with a tiny flower between my fingers. So I was swirling it playfully, my mind so far deep in thoughts it took me time to realize there was an elderly man looking at me right ahead. He was in his traditional Swahili clothing of kikoi, shirt and kofia and he was looking into my face with such scrunity. I thought perhaps he is mistaking me for someone else so I went ahead and said the salam.
“Saumu inkushika?” He said, still giving me a concerned look. I just laughed it off and went on walking but I could still hear his voice behind me, “Saumu inkushika eh?! Nakuona…nakuona vile inkushika” *Face palm* I know right? And I just happen to be this frequent victim of having awkward embarrassing moments with strangers. But that’s a story for another day. Back to fasting…

Due to how much fasting drains me, at work and even at home, I always get comments like, “Can you walk? Lest you fall on the way.”
“Can you do this? Can you carry this?”
So every Ramadhan I’m subconsciously fully prepared to such teasing. Yet Ramadhan is still the best time for me.

You know, you walk around and see Muslims and you can greet each other, smile with that look like, ‘We know each other’s ‘suffering’ (not per say, but you know what I mean :p ) or like we are one people, we are partners in crime, something of the sort. The Ramadhan ambiance is special and it does feel so. Food stalls all over the streets during the evenings, people sending the kids to take a plate of goodies to the other neighbour and the other neighbour takes to the other and when known to be an awful cook, your food just seems to go in circles; forever trying to get a ‘mstiri’. Taraweh, tahajjud…the list is endless.

It’s that time where our mango trees produce in abundance. My mum would fill the bucket with mangoes and ask my brother to take to our neighbours. I would hear my dad get excited, reminding my brother of which neighbours to NOT miss. I would be standing there half-thrilled half-sorry that I am not the one to do that. You know, introvert problems? Mum would ensure to spice it up; ‘Ukigonga kila mlango, give them the mangoes then say Ramadhan kareem’ 😀 My brother puts on his kofia and sets out to knock doors. Then with a sigh and a smile, “I wish all year was Ramadhan.”

Muslims walking around just before Maghrib, sharing dates and water to fellow Muslims on the way. Some stranger passing dates to you to the back seat of a public vehicle so you can break your fast. I mean, any other random day we would probably pass by one another and I would mumble salaam and I wouldn’t even get a response or perhaps you’d mumble back or vice versa. But then Ramadhan, we have something making all of us familiar to one another such that we can strike random conversations with strangers on the way.

I am super delighted of how humanity is at its peak. We remember the orphans, the old, the sick…we remember to pray, to be more gentle, to read qur’an a lot, to hold back our insults, to donate, to forgive and most importantly, work on ourselves.

For me, besides it being the time for more Ibadah, Ramadhan is a time for me to work on my inner self. Get the peace of mind. Submit totally to Allah. And this is something many take for granted; our inner health. How composed are we to life? How much at peace are we with our fate? How much do we actually and sincerely talk to Allah? This is the time. It is my time to unleash my heart to Allah. It is my time to be a better human being not just for this month but for the rest of the year.

And as much as fasting is hard for me, Ramadhan has meant progress for me. I remember a time I would really admire people who could fast Monday and Thursday, Ayamil bayth or sitta min shawwal simply because I couldn’t do it. But then with every coming of Ramadhan, I tried more sunnah fasts and I keep trying over and over again. My biggest push has always been the thought that ‘If this is hard for me, then the rewards will definitely be more’ and that remains my motto as I keep trying.

Ramadhan means a lot of things to me; it means kindness, love and compassion. It means submission, forgiveness and willpower. It means struggle, endurance and success. Ramadhan means a lot to me. What about you? What does it mean to you??


 

On another note, my partner and I are embarking on another business journey, the branding of strokes of my pen. So alhamdulilah we have the first bunch of shirts out. We kindly ask for your support. Besides that, 10% of each shirt goes to Ahmad, a young boy who is undergoing kidney dialysis treatment yet he has a large outstanding balance at Pandya hospital to pay. If not the shirt then you can always mpesa their family directly (no. shown in image).Remember your reward is multiplied in this month so don’t hesitate to support in any little way in shaa Allah.

 

For the shirts, they come in colours of black, white, blue, grey and yellow. For more info: contact us via this no: 0734 201 665 or view our page: https://www.facebook.com/simplex.styles/. More is to come biidhnillah!

P.S. Please remember me in your duas! Whatever you pray for me, may you get just that a thousand more times. Ameen! Ramadhan Mubarak!

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Do you remember your first Ramadhan? I am talking about those days when fasting to you was for mum and dad’s sake. That is to say; if mum or dad and of course the “reporter” sibling in the family did not see you break the fast, your fast is still valid. You can deny it and I can, but Allah saw you every time you drunk half the water meant for rinsing your mouth while taking wudhu. But of course it was not a big deal, we were young and the thought of staying the whole day without food or water to drink either seemed torturous or mission impossible. I remember thinking to myself that even the adults sneak a sip or two of water when no one is watching because there is no way anyone can stay that long without water. At the age of 7 to 10 years Ramadhan to me was to be able to convince the people around me that I have stayed the whole day with neither food nor water.

Imam Siraj Wahaj puts it nicely when he says, Islam means progress. Right now I can look back at those years and see the progress in my Ramadhan. Maybe the adults around me understood it too and that is why they did not punish me when I broke my fast two hours to Magharib adhan (too dumb, I know that now). I was on training and it was okay to slip here and there, my relation with Ramadhan was still being nurtured. However, I never cease to enjoy the holy month. Apart from the hunger and thirst torture, there was the joy of having the extended family meeting up almost every day and excessive playing with friends (no wonder the unbearable thirst). Having the masjids full during all the swalahs, cooking the best foods and being able to witness the amount of blessings increase in the month. Till date, Ramadhan at my home is known as the month of barkah; not because we were taught so but because we saw the blessings. And then there was the ultimate joy that was Eid. So, in a nutshell, Ramadhan to most of us at that young age was torture from hunger and thirst, good food, friends and family.

When you do something wrong and you know it is wrong but no one reprimands you for it and they all act like it was okay for you to do what you have done, your conscious kills you. Or at least that’s what happens to me. At the age of 11-12 years, during Ramadhan all I could think about is that I got to do better. I have to see to it that I stay true to my fasting. It was a real struggle, reminding myself when it got hard that I can do it, I can stay the whole day with no water. Accomplishing this would make me happier than ever during the time of breaking fast and whenever I failed the enthusiasm of breaking the fast was lost all together. Ramadhan to me then was to be able to stay with no food or water the whole day; and it was enough.

Whenever I speak about Sheikh Khalifa, some people look at me with that eye of “oh she is at it again”. The truth is that given a chance to speak about my high school, I would not shut up. I love my high school. Not because it is the best high school in the Coastal province, though it is a bonus, but because of the role it played in building me as a young Muslimah. It was there that I also learnt that finishing the recitation of the whole Qur’an was highly recommended during Ramadhan. I still remember how people would struggle to finish the Qur’an at least twice while I would be struggling with my one khatm. I admit, I would be disappointed when I could not meet my one khatm goal, knowing that most of my friends had two khatms and others even three. All the Ramadhans in Sheikh Khalifa, my goal was that one khatm. I think I realized it once though I’m not so sure.

One of my biggest dream is to speak Arabic. I once told my friend that the day I would be able to speak Arabic fluently, I would not stop talking. He said that is the reason why I have not learnt Arabic till now. I am sure he is wrong. Being outside sheikh Khalifa my thirst for Arabic became intense; not just so as to be able to speak but I really wanted to understand the message in the Qur’an. My recitation was fluent but apart from a few surahs, I didn’t understand most of it’s message. So I asked one of the local ustadh to teach me Arabic at the same time I found myself a mushaf with the translation. And if you thought finishing a khatm was hard try doing it with the translation. Truth be told, I’m yet to accomplish it and I am disturbed by it. Still I was glad that I not only got to recite the qur’an fluently but I could also understand what it was saying to me.

Every Ramadhan has been different to me with different meanings. I have studied specific surahs, I have used Ramadhan to quit some sins. I have done memorizations of specific surahs, supplications and hadith. I have struggled to make each Ramadhan mean something to me. And it all comes back to; Islam means progress. I have seen my progress in my meaning of this beloved Holy month, and if Allah enables me to see more Ramadhans, I pray that I find more meaning to it.

Now as a 25 year old lady I ask myself what does Ramadhan mean to me and my mind goes back to the verses of the Qur’an that I memorized a long time ago due to how much they would be repeated during this month;
“O you who have believed, decreed upon you is fasting as it was decreed upon those before you that you may become righteous” (2:183)
In them I get my answer. This month was meant for me to attain Taqwa. To build the strongest bond possible with my creator and as Umar ibn Abdul Aziz (Rahimatullah) said ;
“Taqwa is not praying long into the night and fasting long into the day but it is to abandon the obstacles between you and Allah (SWT).”
In other words, it is to abandon sin.

Ramadhan was meant for me to have that ultimate connection with the Qur’an. Not only by finishing multiple khatms or memorization but to be able to gain the guidance that Allah talks about when he says;
“Ramadhan is the (month) in which the Qur’an was sent down, as a guide to mankind and a clear guidance and judgement” (2:185)
So yes, Ramadhan is meant for sharing, showing love and compassion to each and every one of us, for the ummah to be united more than ever, but at an individual level, What does Ramadhan mean to you?

RAMADHAN MUBARAK. WA KULLU 3AMUN WA ANTUM BI KHEYR

Everything about Ramadhan in Kenya is beautiful except one thing: moon sighting. It is confusing and even more annoying how we allow it to cause divisions between us. Year in year out we have heard the SAME.ISSUES over and over again.
1. Someone sighted the moon but the kadhi’s phone was off
2. People sending pictures of the moon on their first day of fasting and saying that it is thicker than ‘yesterday’as a proof that it is indeed the first day
3. The kadhi is just following the government dates with the name ‘chief kazi’
4. The moon has been sighted in areas in Kenya but the kadhi wouldn’t agree to it.

This has been the same theory every beginning and end of Ramadhan. I am not about to take sides because I am among the people who are very saddened by these misunderstandings of sharia. I also want to eagerly learn shariah and a student of deen listens and not mocks.

My teachers in deen, majority of them follow the moon seen anywhere in the world. Yet whenever they taught about this issue they made it clear that although they follow the world, there are fatawas of different ulamaas all over the world including Ibn Uthaymeen who agreed that each country should follow their own moon. This includes the lajna (council) of Suudiya which also gave their fatwa that each country should follow their own country and not specifically follow them. As such we became a world divided thrice when it comes to moon sighting:
Those who follow the kadhi i.e. their own countries
Those who follow Suudiya
Those who follow the whole world
Of which the first and the third ideologies are the strongest since following Suudiya alone has been declared wrong by the sheikhs of there already.

Nonetheless it is very clear that this issue won’t be resolved anytime soon or ever at all. All we have to do is respect our different views but it would have been better if we had very serious moon sighting procedures. Those who claim to have called the kadhi every year and never find him, we need to really find out how that happens. How true is it? Perhaps we should have a lajna too such that other respectable people together alongside the regional kadhis and the chief kadhi can be contacted and not specifically him alone.

When it comes to sending photos of the moon after the end of the first day, when the moon was ‘seen’ the previous day where were all those smart phones and nikon cameras? Alhamdulilah Allah has blessed us with technology, if the Kadhi is not picking the phone then why not take the photos and show the proof on that same day instead of the next day?

To add on that the prophet peace be upon him never asked us to check the thickness of the moon but the sight of it. Be it here or anywhere else that you follow please do understand that the thickness of the moon can never be used as a justification that the moon has been seen. The moon is one the entire world but it is seen in some places and that is the hikma of Allah that some places the moon is covered by the clouds and unseen. Plus there are longitudinal differences for example We and Suudiya have the same time based on the longitudes but our prayer timings are different (based on lunar calendar). Even a closer example is how we in Mombasa can pray 10/15 minutes before Nairobi and when we go further on the longitude the later they pray than us. So the problem here is that we haven’t understood the lunar calendar and learnt its details and the hikmah of it. Imagine people in Europe who are fasting in summer it comes up to 18/19 hours of fasting. When Ramadhan falls on winter they fast for about 6 hours. So Ramadhan keeps rotating and they get to fast longer and shorter hours every year. That is the hikmah of Allah. Imagine if Ramadhan followed the solar calendar, it would be fixed seasons such that some fasted permanently on longer hours than others and some would not be able to fast at all. What about the North and South pole? They have 6 months of sunshine how would they be fasting continuously if it was based on solar timings? How unfair would that be?

So from that the hadith didn’t say about how big the moon is but fasting according to the sight of it.

Again what one of my teachers of deen said of how he used to follow the kadhi yet he changed to following the entire world after his further studies in Shariah. And every other sheikh has their own reasons for following whichever country they do but one thing they keep saying is that we shouldn’t fight in this holy month because of that. The kadhi does not make his decisions alone. This is a huge responsibility on his shoulders and it won’t be easy to just make reckless decisions as many assume. And whatever his decisions he very well knows that he takes full responsibility of the ummah. He is someone’s parent, brother and son so let’s stop abusing him.

What we desperately need right now is the ulamaas in Kenya to have a conference and come with a serious solution on how moon sighting should take place such that the Kenyans themselves can be satisfied with the procedures. This would involve the different regional kadhis as well and the scholars amongst us. Perhaps they should have more trusted people allocated in the interior areas as informants of the moon. I really dream of something like this to happen. How wonderful would it be if fatwas were given and we are all able to fast and break it together. We should borrow a leaf from Abu dhabi who used to follow Suudiya previously yet this time they decided to form their own council consisting of sheikhs and scholars of astronomy to record the sighting of the moon in their own area including the interior parts. Yesterday it wasn’t until 8 p.m after they confirmed that it has been sighted in their area is when they announced the beginning of Ramadhan.

The prophet peace be upon him said that divisions will be among the signs of qiyamah…so yes, they were bound to happen whether we want it or not. Let us just pray that Allah guides us into making the right decisions and forgiving us for taking wrong steps. For most of us who are arguing about it are not even in the least bit knowledgeable in matters of deen or even understand geography. Follow whichever country or sheikh you want but don’t get abusive. The arguments are becoming too lame now. Nothing new to talk about; same old claims always. No one is being threatened with a gun to follow anyone. Let us start the Ramadhan peacefully and end it in the same way in shaa Allah. Moon sighting should not be moon fighting. We are one people. Such differences should not be a reason for non Muslims to laugh or mock us for it. May Allah easen for us and grant us the ability to do lots of ibadah and have the knowledge of deen. May He accept our deeds and forgive us our misdeeds. Ameen.

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The month of Ramadhan always come with a lot of blessings. It is that time of the year where everyone spends to their last coin in making themselves and their families happy by cooking different delicious foods to decorate the happy moments. It is the time where neighbours share whatever much or even little they might have in store or have cooked. The rich give to the poor so they may as well enjoy the grace Ramadhan comes with. But there are quite a number of misconceptions on this month, among the people.

It is not unlawful for people to cook good food and grace the joyful moments, but a lot of people grew up with the thought that Ramadhan is the month to cook and cook and more cooking. And eat, eat and eat more. But this isn’t it. Muslims are advised to cook as much as their consumption only and not be extravagant as most do during this month. For it is clearly written in the holy book Qur’an: ‘Verily the spendthrifts are the brothers of devils, and the Devil is ever ungrateful to his Lord. ” and it is also clearly written that we should not be extravagant, because God doesn’t love the extravagant. The prophet added to that and advised Muslims to take meals as light as possible, for as he put it, the worst thing a man can fill is his stomach.

Another misconception people have is that this is the month of shopping and go outings during the night. It isn’t that these things aren’t allowed but some people have gone as far as considering the month of Ramadhan, the month to shop, go outings and stroll around unnecessarily. Some people have made it their market season and completely forget the real essence of this month. While people are busy praying with humility in the mosques, others are busy running up and down the roads in town even when there is no need for it. It is important we all understand that the main aim of this month is to increase the amount of worship to our Lord and not the amount of money we spend on shopping or how much we walk in the streets.

While others take this chance to restrain from evil and change for the better, others consider the refraining from evil only during the day, while they are fasting. Immediately after breaking their fast, they go back gossiping, gambling, chewing miraa and some of the other unlawful acts. But that isn’t what is expected from us Muslims. We are supposed to strive to be better people in the society rather than be hypocritical, being good only during the day and being the same old us once we break the fast.

It is important that Muslims understand the real significance of this month and take the greatest advantage of it. They should participate more in good deeds, doing charity, spending more time in the remembering of God and refrain from any kind of evil.

 

Photo Courtesy: Unknown

 

There always comes a time in our lives whereby we are required by religion to take certain actions that have higher benefit in our lives. But what may seem ironical yet so great is how the new era youth can temporarily change to suit the trend. A good example is how we may find Christian and Muslim youth dragging to the churches and mosques during Christmas and Ramadan only. So Ramadan is finally here, you and I as a youth what are our main aims and goals during this very short period?

Ramadan is the holy month among the Muslims whereby they fast for an entire month and get closer to God. It is during this month that people work (spiritually) tirelessly to clear their previous sin accounts by doing sincere repentance. The beauty in all this is how mosques can be filled twice or in triples the normal number of mosque attendance. This is when the ladies will start searching for their over sized buibuis full of dust and stuffy that hasn’t been worn since the previous Ramadan. The tight and bright, shining ones will be kept pending for a while. The makeup kit will also have to be kept aside. The changes go on and on to fill an entire list.

The young lads on the other hand would remove their blings and at least have the courtesy to wear their trousers well without showing us their inner wear. The boy probably hasn’t prayed since the previous year a time like this- Ramadan. Yet we should never insult or be hard on those of us who change only during ramadhan, but instead, lets encourage them! Let us tell the girl wearing her over sized buibui that she looks prettier than in her tight ones. Let us tell the boy who has only

come to the masjid one year ago that he is a blessing to the masjid so that they can have the morale to go on with the ramadhan habits even after it ends.

However, just when the time of breaking the fast comes in, a lot goes on in the surrounding. Taking a walk in the streets in town may make you more than perplexed. While others are busy worshipping, young ladies are back on the streets just hanging around aimlessly, back on their skimpy buibuis with screaming make up all over the face. The young boys on the other hand are back at their ‘maskani’ busy chewing miraa, smoking weeds and all (which are illegal acts in Islamic religion). This brings up the question, ‘why keep yourself hungry for a whole day with an aim of developing spiritually while just at the break of the fast, you are back to your old habits??’ it may just as well be a waste of your energy.

Others yet, may be patient enough to stay off sinful acts for the entire month but just at the announcement of the sighted eid moon, its hurrah! for them. They wouldn’t even wait for the night to end for this is probably like ‘good riddance!’

On one hand, putting on the pious mask during Ramadan has its positivity in that; we get to know our deeper spiritual capabilities. The one who is always sinning may stop during the month and one is supposed to ask oneself, ‘if I could avoid it for an entire thirty days then why not for the next thirty and the next?’ Some individuals have actually put themselves together and were able to continue developing spiritually but what of the rest?

Holy months are actually a golden chance that many don’t live to see every year. It is like being given a whole mountain of pieces of gold and you are asked to pick to the level you can. Of course in such a scenario, we would all be scrambling for the pieces but now imagine, after you have decided to carry four sacks of gold and walking all the way with it to your home, you decide to go pour all the gold pieces in the sewage. What a waste! The above mentioned may have concentrated on the Ramadan but doesn’t mean it can’t apply to the holy months amongst the Christians and Hindus or any other religion. We all know our purpose in life so let’s not work hard to end up vomiting it all out aimlessly. To all the Muslims, as Ramadan is here with us, please let us be focused and try to change for the better God willing. I’ll humbly end it with wishing you all ‘Ramadan Mubarak!’

Photo Courtesy: Unknown

One of my most awaited times in a year is the month of Ramadhan. I always anticipate it just the same way a child anticipates the coming of her mother from a long time journey. But for sure, I am never the only one awaiting it’s coming; everyone does for it is the month of glory.

Ramadhan is like a visitor who comes only once in a year, carrying with him blessings in abundance. It is that time of the year where unity holds all the people of the same faith, bringing them close together. People forgive each other, forget their grudges, visit one another, spend more time remembering their God…it’s the month of worship, the month of peace.

I remember as a child how I’d strive really hard to fast like everyone and when it gets to mid day I’d innocently surrender to hunger and eat. Or those other times when I’d drink water secretly as a child so everyone believes I’m still fasting. I remember how I’d anticipate the futaar (the breaking of the fast) so that I may eat the delicious food that sometimes we get to eat only in Ramadhan. Actually, many children get to think that the only way to get the tasty food is to fast, and parents always took advantage of that thought and encouraged their children to start fasting at a very young age so they may get to eat good food. Or even how I’d anticipate waking up for the suhuur (late night- early morning meal), I just thought it fun having all the family waking up at such odd hours of the night to eat.  But as I grew up, I learnt that fasting is not all about food as many misunderstand; there is real wisdom behind fasting. It is just like a psychological way to teach mankind to appreciate what they have to eat from food and remember that there are so many people out there having nothing to eat at all. It is a reminder for the more fortunate to give charity to the less advantaged in the society.

Ramadhan comes with its own glow. It is just one of the most beautiful times in a year where everyone is yearning to get closer to God. The fun and beauty of it is how both the young and the old would compete to complete the recitation of the Qur’an (the holy book) as required, first or who would read it the most times by the end of the month, how we as family would all crowd up together to go perform the taraweeh and tahajud prayer (the night prayers done specially in Ramadhan) or how the Muslim society in general would call for donations from all over so that the poor may have good food and clothing as well or doing any good deed in general.

It is the time for repentance, the time to go into one on one conversation with the Lord. And as our prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said that whoever lives through Ramadhan and he still wasn’t forgiven, is in a very great loss for this is the time the doors of mercy are open and God forgives whoever repents truthfully. But human kind should be more sincere in repentance than they do for quite many people change their ways for only this particular month and just by the end of it, are back to their old evil ways. It is such a pity if someone thinks God doesn’t know what they hold in their hearts but alas! He knows what they even know not.

Among the benefits of fasting is that within the first ten days you get ‘Rahma’- Allah’s mercy, within the second ten days one gets ‘maghfira’- forgiveness from the Lord and from the last ten days one gets the blessing of being shun away from the hellfire. Apart from that, two great happiness from fasting is when one breaks their fast and when one will finally get to meet their Lord.

I usually consider this month a great blessing to live up to each year. The privileges are many and it brings along so much love and harmony among family, friends, neighbours, the poor and the rich…the entire Muslim society. We pray that we are among the lucky ones to live through the entire Ramadhan, get the blessings from it and are totally forgiven by our Lord. It is the only thing I’d pray for right now…amin.

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Can you feel the aura of ramadhan? Its slowly creeping in our environment and you just feel its presence as if it is lingering around us silently, waiting for the right time to knock at the door. There is that special ramadhan mood; the tranquility, the peace, the calmness and its signs that are already visible in the darkness of our nights. Dates are already in the market and ramadhan programs are all set. Yes.. after a whole year’s wait..here it is at last!

Oh how wonderful if the whole year was ramadhan. How wonderful would it be if in a whole year’s time, we all are willingly submitting to none other than Allah. If in a whole year,  the barbies become hijabis and playboys become prayboys as the common quote says? How wonderful would that be? Well..Unfortunately it is just one month but in that single month we are still able to collect rewards worth a whole years ibadah! So why not get into the ramadhan mood already?!

So here’s the time, as we count down days to ramadhan let us start by asking for forgiveness to all those we wronged. Let us swallow our pride for once and approach all those we have hurt. This is the time. Don’t wait till ramadhan is here for you to ask for forgiveness.  Ask in advance!  Yes! Because you wouldn’t want to waste any more precious time of ramadhan still asking for forgiveness, would you? Finish up with these small things that need to be done. Be more helpful, be more compassionate,  start giving out your charity from now, start reading the qur’an from this moment such that during ramadhan, you are already accustomed to the new rituals and routines.

Start waking up for tahajjud, start making lots of duas. Get into the mood already and furthermore, make sure to enjoy what you are doing. Let your ramadhan start as early as now. Maybe not literally but action-wise and psychologically.

One thing that ramadhan has proved to us is that we have the will power. We have the ability to change yet we only tune ourselves to change during this one month. This is actually sad because it just shows how our imaan is low and how easy it is for shaitan to play with our minds. If you can do it in ramadhan then you can do it before just as you can do it after. So tie your seat belt and start preparing your soul by feeding it with the remembrance of Allah and ibadah. We all seem so sure to live to this ramadhan which is just a couple of days away but still, the unknown remains known only by Allah. Therefore let us start the sincere submission from now, let us start repenting from now, let us stop sinning from now…but most importantly,  let us focus on Allah only from now. Yes, not any other time but now. Let us get into the mood of ramadhan.

Allahumma balighna ramadhan. Ameen

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With the beginning of the Ramadan season among’st the Muslims, all we see around is the food stalls all over the roads in the evenings with very diverse kinds of foods on display. It is at this time that many of the forgotten foods in our homes are actually cooked once again and I bet the children wait for the breaking of the fast so impatiently.

Ramadan is the month whereby Muslims are required to fast such that they may be able to feel the pangs of hunger of the poor and thus remember them. Yet, it is rather ironical how our tables at home get filled to the brim when it comes to breaking the fast. You may find almost ten different foods have been cooked for a family of three? And you wonder what happens to all that food that will obviously remain.

Many consider this month the time to feast and it can get to a very ugly scenario where one eats and eats till they can’t breathe well anymore leaving alone not being able to stand up from the place they are seated. This is obviously not the agenda of this season for it is meant to keep us healthy and not deteriorate our health even more. People with diabetes, high blood pressure and many other diseases break their diets while the rest eat a lot of oily and sugary foods that are obviously unhealthy.

It is even more ironical that during this season, the food stuffs in the markets double and triple in their prices instead of going lower. This happens because the business personnel have realized how much people eat quite more in this month. This beats the expected because initially, this season is meant for people to eat less but it is very evident everywhere how food has been made a priority.

Extravagance is a very unlikeable behavior and however much we may want to eat a variety of foods, it is very important that people set a limit to the amount of food they cook or buy. Let us not cook too much such that the extra ends up in dustbins while many people out there have nothing to eat. I really admire the people who barely change their food menus in such a season or maybe just add single food stuff on the table.

We all have to understand that this is not a month of eating nor is it an eating competition such that we act on the food with so much vengeance. It is important to keep healthy by not over eating or eating too much of oily and excessive sugary foods. Let’s avoid extravagance by sharing the extra food with the poor and needy rather than throwing it away.

As William Londer said, ‘to ensure good health: eat lightly, breathe deeply, live moderately, cultivate cheerfulness and maintain an interest in life.’