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Alhumdulilah we are blessed to be alive to experience another month of purification and healing. Our Lord has given us another opportunity to mend our relationship with Him subhanahu wa ta’ala.
O moon-faced Beloved,
the month of Ramadan has arrived
Cover the table
and open the path of praise.
O fickle busybody.
it’s time to change your ways.
Can you see the one who’s selling the halvah
how long will it be the halvah you desire?
Just a glimpse of the halvah-maker
has made you so sweet even honey says,
“I’ll out myself beneath your feet, like soil;
I’ll worship at your shrine.”
your chick frets within the egg
with all your eating and choking
Break out of your shell that your wings may grow.
Let yourself fly.
The lips of the Master are parched
from calling the Beloved.
The sound of your call resounds
through the horn of your empty belly.
Let nothing be inside of you.
Be empty: give your lips to the lips of the reed.
When like a reed you fill with His breath,
then you’ll taste sweetness.
Sweetness is hidden in the Breath
thats fills the reed.
Be like Mary – By that sweet breath
a child grew within her.
~ Mawlana Rumi
May we all experience a blessed and uplifting month, and may we exit the month in a much better state than we entered the month. Amin ya Rabb!
“No calamity befalls a Muslim but that Allah expiates some of his sins because of it, even though it were the prick he receives from a thorn.” (Narrated by Sayyida Aisha radhiAllahu anha, Sahi Bukhari, Vol: (7) Hadith No: (544))
Life can be tough at times, but the above hadith reminds us that nothing goes un-noticed to Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala, not even a tiny thing such as a prick from a thorn; so what about everything else that the heart endures when afflicted with calamities, hardships, trials/tribulations?
With this in mind, let’s rejoice and seek comfort in knowing that Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala is aware of what is going on in our hearts. Each difficult moment, day, month, year(s) we experience, lets be assured that He subhanahu wa ta’ala is aware of our state and situation. Life is short, and thus time is important; each breath is a blessing and gives us an opportunity to get closer to Him subhanahu wa ta’ala, which is really want all these situations are about- for us to run to Him subhanahu wa ta’ala. As Mawlana Rumi very eloquently sums it all up for us:
“He has afflicted you from every direction in order to pull you back to the Directionless.”
May our hearts always be attached to Him subhanahu wa ta’ala, and may each difficulty we all face be a means of purification for us. Amin ya Rabb! Allahumma salli ‘ala sayyidina Muhammad!
“Oh my heart,
Don’t become discouraged so easily.
In the hidden world, there are many mysteries,
Even if the whole planet threatens your life,
don’t let go of the Beloved’s robe
for even a breath.”
Have you ever taken part in an activity called “Trust Fall”?
Basically, “Trust Fall” is a trust-building activity performed as a group in which a person deliberately allows himself to fall, relying on the other members of the group to catch him. This type of activity is very popular in team building away sessions where the emphasise is on building a trusting relationship with your colleagues.
It’s amazing how during those type of exercises, we can just easily relax and fall back! We have the complete confidence that the individual/group will catch us. We trust them.
When the trials of life overwhelm us and we find ourselves perturbed, worried, distressed etc, we should apply the same principle and have conviction that no matter what happens, Allah will not let us fall! He subhanahu wa’tala will catch us.
So relax, fall back and let Him catch you. Just like Mawluna Rumi says in one of his poems “Fall into the Safety of God”.
“Turn in the circle of your true Existence
Be in harmony with your capacity,
with your created nature
Be in active submission.”
“A secret turning in us
makes the universe turn.
Head unaware of feet,
and feet head. Neither cares.
They keep turning.”
“Rise. Move around the center
as pilgrims wind the Kaaba.
Being still is how one clay clod
sticks to another in sleep,
while movement wakes us up
and unlocks new blessings.”
“We long to disappear
To enter the moment when
we are no longer turning,
but are being turned”
“The Sama is peace for the souls of
The one who knows this, possesses
peace in her heart.
The one who wants to be awakened,
is the one who sleeps in the middle
of the garden…..”
“Dancing is not rising to your feet painlessly
like a speck of dust blown around in the wind
Dancing is when you rise above both worlds
tearing your heart to pieces and giving up
“Your dance just took me today
and suddenly I began to whirl.
All the realms spun around me
in endless celebration.
My soul lost its grip,
My body shed its fatigue.
Hearing your hands clap and your
I floated up to the heavens!”
Quotes of poetry by Mawlana Jalaluddin Rumi
Dedicated to my dear Aunty Noor, and sisters Farah & Farhanah x
The Islamic year of 1430 is about to start in a day or so (depends where you are located on the globe!); so will the Gregorian calendar year of 2009. As the New Year approaches, it’s time to turn over a new leaf.
It’s good to leave each day behind,
like flowing water, free of sadness.
Yesterday is gone and its tale told.
Today new seeds are growing.
The new Islamic year begins with the blessed month of Muharram. Our beloved Prophet sallaAllahu alayhi wasalam said:
“The best of fasts besides the month of Ramadhan is the fasting of Allah’s month of Muharram.” (Sahih Muslim)
May the New Year bring much joy, peace and serenity to our hearts. May Allah subhanahu wa’ tala bring ease, openings and success to all those who have been afflicted with hardships and trials. Over and above all, may we live each day, each second in His remembrance, and in gratitude to Him; and may we be closer to Him subhanahu wa’ tala, and our beloved Prophet sallaAllahu alayhi wasalam. Allahumma Amin ya Rabb!
As-salamu’alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!
I was just going through some old photographs last night and came across this one of a bird which I took on one of my trips in Istanbul.
This very bird flew alongside the boat we were in, from one side of the sea to the other. I remembered how I marvelled at its compelling form; its beauty and at its speed; its peaceful and calm disposition; and how Allah subhanahu wa’tala has made it so easy for birds to remain aloft. As He subhanahu wa’tala says in the Qur’an:
“Do they not see the birds held (flying) in the midst of the sky? None holds them but Allah [none gave them the ability to fly but Allah]. Verily, in this are clear proofs and signs for people who believe (in the Oneness of Allah). (16:79)”
Whilst reminiscing over this picture, one of my favourite quotes came to mind:
“God turns you from one feeling to another and teaches by means of opposites so that you will have two wings to fly, not one”
~ Mawlana Jalaluddin Rumi
Isn’t it amazing how we often find ourselves moving back and forth from one idea/reaction to it’s opposite! I find myself in this situation quite often actually, where at the time, I can be so adamant and convinced that one idea/reaction is right for me, yet days later (sometimes even minutes!), I change my mind to the complete opposite!
Just like Allah subhanahu wa’tala has given birds the ability to maintain aloft and balance themselves with their two wings; we as humans are given the gift of having two “wings” to help us keep that balance in place for us. Allah subhanahu wa’tala has given us the ability to learn, explore and deal with things in life through various ways and means, and quite often it is through the means of opposites. For example, the wing of fear and hope will always work together; when part of us is in fear, the other part will be in hope. The wing of darkness and light will always work together; the light will always show and help us in the darkness, and so on. Just like Rumi says, to give us two wings to fly and not one!
I’m sure Rumi’s quote can be interpreted in many ways, and the above is just a couple of my thoughts…..
To end, another profound quote on a similar topic which comes to mind is:
“The Heart, in its journey to Allah subhanahu wa’tala is like that of a bird:
Love is its head, and fear and hope are its two wings. When the
head and two wings are sound the bird flies gracefully; if the
head is severed, the bird dies; if the bird loses one of its wings, it
then becomes a target for every hunter or predator.”
~ Hafiz Ibn Qayyim al-Jawzi