Objectives of Ramadan

Source: SuhaibWebb.com

Discussing the objectives of our actions is an important thing because to do so is to discuss the actions in a true and deep way. It is possible that if we do not know why we are doing certain things, we could miss the entire point behind the action itself. The Prophet ﷺ said about this concept, “Maybe a fasting person gains nothing from his fast except hunger and thirst. And maybe a person who prays in the night gains nothing from their prayer except staying up late.”1 So this is a person who does an action but gets no result from it.

This is because if someone does an action without knowing why they are doing it or what the objective behind it is, then it is possible that the action will be useless. This is because, as Imam al-Shāṭibī said, “Actions without objectives are like bodies without souls.” So in this article we will discuss some of the general objectives of fasting and Ramadan.

1. Attaining Taqwa

This is the major objective of fasting in Ramadan as clarified by the Qur’an. God said, “O you who have believed, decreed upon you is fasting as it was decreed upon those before you that you may become righteous [muttaqūn].”2 Fasting also teaches a person how to have taqwā because while one is fasting they are careful about all kinds of things. They watch what comes out of their mouth, what they look at, and all that they do. As a result, the person learns how to have a certain level of restraint regarding their actions. This helps them build their taqwā by making them watchful over everything that they do. As to the definition of taqwā, the clearest way to understand it is through the definition that was provided by Abū Hurayra (ra). Someone came to him and asked, “What is taqwā?” He responded by asking the man if he has ever walked through a thorny road. He said, “Yes.” He asked, “What did you do?” He replied, “Whenever I saw thorns I would avoid them or adjust my clothes to keep them safe.” Abū Hurayra told him, “That’s taqwā.

2. Fasting is a Shield

The Prophet ﷺ said in an authentic hadith (narration) that “fasting is a shield.”3 Even the word shield in Arabic has the connotation of protection and this is one of the meanings of the word taqwā. The Prophet ﷺ also said, “O youth! Whosoever amongst you can afford to get married, let them get married. And whoever cannot afford to do so then they should fast because it will help him control his desires.”4 This protection that fasting gives cannot be accomplished by just reducing one’s food intake because it is the material and immaterial elements of fasting that aide one in controlling themselves. For this reason Imam al-Ṣanʿānī said about this, “It is for a secret that God put in fasting, so just reducing how much food you eat will not be enough.”

3. Fasting and Patience

Another thing that we should learn in Ramadan is to be patient with what we face in our daily lives. The Prophet ﷺ said in a hadith, “Fasting the month of patience, and three days of every month is equivalent to fasting the entire year.”5 In this hadith, the Prophet ﷺ refers to the month of Ramadan as the month of patience, emphasizing the importance of patience in this month.

It is also said that fasting is half of patience. This is because patience basically consists of staying away from bad deeds and persisting in good deeds. In the month of Ramadan, one of the major things that we seek to do is stay away from as many bad deeds as possible so that our fasting is half of patience.

4. Ramadan is the Month of Qur’an

In the month of Ramadan, we spend more time with the Qur’an than in any other part of the year. We spend time reading it by ourselves, we spend time studying it, we spend time listening to it during tarāwīḥ prayers, and so on. In this month, the revelation of the Qur’an began and a civilization of learning and knowledge was born.

5. A Month of Generosity

It is narrated that the Prophet ﷺ was the most generous of people and his most generous time was Ramadan. In doing this, the Prophet ﷺ was combining between a personal act of worship, like reading the Qur’an, and a social act of worship, charity. Thereby, he showed what it means to live a comprehensive existence as someone who worships God. In doing so, he shows that our responsibilities are not only limited to ourselves but also include those around us.

6. The Importance of Time

We also learn in Ramadan that time is one of the most important blessings that we have in our lives. The Prophet ﷺ said, “Two blessings, many people are at a loss regarding them: health and free time.”6 The major acts of worship in Islam are all related to specific times. We pay our zakāt at a particular time. We pray at specific times. We start fasting at a particular time, in a particular month, and we break our fast at a particular time. We go on ḥajj at a particular time. All of these specifications are meant to teach us, among other things, the importance of time. For this reason al-Ḥasan al-Baṣrī said, “O son of Adam! You are nothing but a compilation of breaths, so every time you inhale and exhale, a piece of you is lost.” The believer is strict with their time and the more a person’s faith increases, the more their observance of their time increases. The responsibilities we have are more than the time we have to carry them out, so we should try to be as strict with our time as possible.

These are just some of the objectives of fasting and Ramadan that we should seek to actualize. We can use these as a measuring stick for our month and see how we add up. If we look throughout and see that we are improving in these aspects then we should thank God for His bounties upon us, and if we find that we are not, then we should seek His forgiveness and grace and work harder.

May Allah accept from us all our good deeds in this month and forgive us for our shortcomings. Ameen.

Note: Most of the this article is taken from an article on the topic that was written by Shaykh al-Raysuni.

Source: SuhaibWebb.com

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Through the eyes of a child

A LESSON FOR US THROUGH THE EYES OF A CHILD:

”Dear Allah,
Assalamualaikum 🙂

I am Mubeen Ahmad from I-B, Roll no. 14.
How are you Allah?
My teacher says you made me. Thank you for making me Allah. Oh i meen jazakallah 🙂
She said u like to hear Inshallah Mashallah and Jazakallah.

Teacher says that if there is anything i want, i should ask you and if i have any complaint i should tell you.

Last week na Allah, i cried a lot
You know why?
Because Saba Chachi pushed Maa (grandma) on the floor. Maa was crying so much! I don’t like when maa cries. When she cries, even i cry. I went to Ammi to tell that Saba chachi is not nice. She is pushing maa and also shouting on her. She is making her cry. Toh Ammi told me not to tell anyone.
Why shouldn’t i tell anyone Allah? Continue reading

‘Don’t Be Sad’ Series – Spiritual tips!

Bismillah

Assalamualaikum wa-rahmatullah,

Sometimes no amount of tips and advises work best like the spiritual tips do..! So even though in my next post I shall share some practical tips on overcoming sadness, inshaAllah, here are some spiritual must do’s for us to get started with, beginning in the name of Allah!

1. Work on your relationship with Allah(swt): In our struggle for peace in our lives we often seek help from the people around only to return empty handed. We forget that the only one who truely understands us is our Almighty, who is the only ONE who knows every little pain we are going through; and so we need to make a sincere effort in improving our relationship with Him – Our Creator! There is a need for us to befriend Him. We should make our pain a tool by which we can draw closer to Allah. When you are left alone think that may be Allah sent everyone away so that it was just you and Him; and so begin to work on your relationship with the Divine.

2. Salah: you cannot underestimate the power of Salah in managing emotions especially negative emotions. When you feel down/depressed/anxious or stressed, instead of torturing yourself with those emotions, get up and make wudhu and pray 2 rak’ah and watch yourself feel 10 times better afterwards. If praying 2 rak’ah didn’t help, pray 2 more, and 2 more…until you feel better, and trust me, you’ll feel better. Salah is the gift that Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) has given us in this world and one cannot describe the type of spiritual heart surgery that occurs during prayer which makes you feel so much better inshaAllah.

3 . Quran: After praying your 2 rak’ah, and if you’re still feeling down. Pick up the Quran and read the Quran. Don’t just read a page or two, but truly immerse yourself in the experience and read as much as you can. After a while you’ll notice that your negative emotions are gone and you’re feeling really calm and relaxed. When you’re reading the Quran, imagine Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) speaking to you through His Quran and try to understand every word and every meaning and perhaps you might find the answer to your emotional situation in the verses you’re reading.

4. Dua: You’ve prayed 2 rak’ah, you’ve read lots of Quran, now it’s time to turn to Him (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) and ask Him for His help in your situation. Ask Him to give you the calmness and happiness you want in your life. Ask Him to give you the blessing of tranquility regardless of the situation you’re facing. And by the way, when making dua, don’t just read the standard duas you read daily, but truly speak to Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) even in your own language and ask him what you want. He listens and He understands and He knows what you’re going through. Just be sincere and humble when making the dua and you’ll feel the sweetness of being the slave of Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) inshaAllah.

-Abu Productive (ProductiveMuslim.com)

I recently happened to read some really powerful words via a sister, May Allah bless her for sharing it .. The words read “Allah (swt) listens and already knows what is in your heart, but He wants you to ASK him for what you want”. (When I read these words I almost cried because they came at the time when I REALLY needed to hear something like that, Alhumdulillah! )

5.Tahajjud:

According to the Hadeeth narrated by Muslim on the authority of Abu
Hurairah “Allah descends (in a manner befitting His Majesty) to the
lowest heaven every night when half of the night or two-third of it is over
and says: “Is there anyone asking who may be given? Is there anyone
supplicating who may be answered?”

Shaikh Yasir Qadhi says “If you want something in your life and you aren’t praying Tahajjud for it, then in reality you don ’t really want it..'”

This article – magic called tahajjud by a dear sister is really inspiring and talks about her own experience of praying tahajjud. So yes, let’s set our alarms for tahajjud from tomorrow, inshaAllah, and beg, plead and ask Allah to set things right for us!

Lastly, majority of our problems are lightened when we detach ourselves from this world.More often we expect too much from the people around, and hoping everything to be perfect and when things turn out otherwise we fall big time. So let’s save ourselves from that torture and lower our expectaions. Let’s remember  that true peace and total perfection can only be achieved in the Hereafter, in our abode in Jannah… where everything is perfect! So for the “forever” happiness we need to work and be patient in the tests of this world so that we can be dwellers of Paradise in the Hereafter, inshaAllah!

Last piece of advice by brother Abu Productive: when you go through an emotional downturn, remember that this world is temporary, so don’t stress about it too much. Worry about the hereafter and what you’ve prepared for it, that’s what we should all be stressed about. May Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) make it easy for us. Ameen.

Lot’s of Love and Peace,

Potential Hijabi ❤

P.S. Don’t forget Allah loves you… like alotttt! 🙂