For long we’ve known Ramadan as the month of Iftar parties, massive feasts, and large gatherings of friends and family over delicious food and sweets.
Yet for the first time this year, things have changed drastically and thanks to lockdown restrictions, these gatherings are no more. And as much as we’re going to miss the Barakah (blessing) of having our family and friends over, I guess most of us can admit this is actually a major relief.
While we all love hosting our friends and family and collecting the rewards of feeding the fasting, these gatherings often meant we would spend hours on end cooking, cleaning, packing up, tidying, and of course, a whole lot of panicking and stressing out. So much so, by the time these Iftar parties were over, we would be super exhausted and have barely enough energy to pray or read the Quran.
So as a Muslim Mum, I am embracing this unique homebound Ramadan with a positive spirit and a sense of gratitude. We finally have a Ramadan where we can sit alone and increase in our personal worship. We finally have a Ramadan where our energy can be focused on pleasing Allah and drawing nearer to Him. We finally have a Ramadan where we can focus on ourselves for once and work on our own spirituality.
And above all, we finally have a Ramadan where we can take advantage of the gift of خلوة مع الله or seclusion with Allah like never before. We finally have the opportunity to be away from the people and connect with Allah in private.
In the Hadith of Jibreel, the Prophet ﷺ defined Ehsaan as to “Worship Allah as though you can see Him.” Let us use these solitary moments to speak to Allah as though we can see Him, as though we can hear Him. Let us really embrace our solitude with Allah to just sit and talk to Him, beseech Him, let Him know our worries, our concerns, our frustrations, whatever is on our minds that we need help in. It’s the perfect opportunity to enjoy uninterrupted time between us and Allah.
It is through this seclusion that we learn what it’s like to be of those who have consciousness of Allah in private. It enables us to be of the people who fear Allah in private and truly taste the sweetness of sincerity. And of course, it enables us to understand what it’s like to stand before Allah alone, an event that will no doubt happen once more in the Afterlife.
Yet as beautiful as sitting alone at home away from the world can seem on the outside, it’s important we don’t let it lead us through the door of boredom and time-wasting.
The Prophet ﷺ states in a Hadith that “There are two blessings that people take for granted, good health and free time”. And despite this Ramadan gifting us a whole load of free time, we have to be mindful it doesn’t translate into binging on Netflix and endlessly scrolling through social media.
Use this gift of free time to excel in your Quran recitation like never before, you finally have uninterrupted time to improve your memorisation of the Quran, and really engage in your prayer. Use the time that would have otherwise been spent packing up and preparing a grand Iftar celebration, transfer that energy towards preparing a night of prayer and Dhikr.
Yes, I’m going to miss all the lovely dinners with friends and family, but I want to make this Ramadan a Ramadan I will never forget. May Allah bless your month and allow you all to draw nearer to Him.
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