Alhamdulilah I was fortunate to attend the Light Upon Light conference at Excel last Sunday and as we enter into the last week before the commencement of Ramadan I wanted to share some of the lessons / reflections from the speeches that I heard during the conference.
Firstly, why do we fast?
One of the memorable moments during the conference was when Ustadh Asim Khan said that fasting is like a training programme given to us by Allah to attain taqwa. It is a physical act to help us to attain the spiritual fruit of taqwa. Ramadan should help us to train our impulses so that after the month is over, the heart becomes the king of the body. This was a poignant moment for me because it emphasised how much focus I need to place on my heart to constantly purify it. Actions of worship become so much easier when it is motivated by the love for Allah that resonates from the heart.
The Prophet SAW said “There is a piece of flesh in the body if it becomes good (reformed) the whole body becomes good but if it gets spoiled, the whole body gets spoiled – and that is the heart.” [Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 2, Number 49: Part of the Hadith Narrated by An-Nu’man bin Bashir]
‘Why do we always assume that Allah wants to make things difficult for us?’
This is one of the questions that stuck in my mind from the conference. For people living in UK, the fast is roughly 18 hours this year. While it might be a longer fast in comparison with other countries, for the one who utilises Ramadan properly to engage in acts of worship, fasts using the five senses and is able to develop taqwa, Subhan’Allah just imagine the reward. One of the things that I love about the month of Ramadan is that Allah SWT is the one who personally rewards every single one of us for it.
In a Hadith recorded by Muslim, No.1151 The Prophet PBUH said “Allah ( SWT) said, “Every deed of the Son of Adam is for himself except fasting – it is for me and I will personally reward it.”
In another Hadith reported in Al-Bukhārī (no. 1901) and Muslim (no. 760), The Prophet SAW said “Whoever fasts Ramadan out of faith and hope for reward, his past sins will be forgiven.”
So it is important for us to repent before the month of Ramadan and even more so during the month of Ramadan because this is a month for us to attain forgiveness from Allah SWT.
Lastly, Sheikh Abdur-Rahman McCathy mentioned that one of the true objectives of Ramadan is to encourage us to continue to get up for the night prayer (tahajjud) after Ramadan is over. One of the benefits of Tahajjud is that Allah puts a light on the face of the one who stands for the night prayer. Scholars have said that the night is a testament to what one loves hence Tahajjud is a voluntary act of worship that enables us to demonstrate our love for Allah SWT and improve our relationship with him . Then he mentioned something that was very important, “If you can’t get up and pray tahajjud during the night, it’s because your sins have tied you down.” This emphasises the need for us to constantly reflect on the sins that we might be committing during the day that could be affecting all our acts of worship not just tahajjud.
This post cannot do justice to a whole day conference so if you need that Pre-Ramadan boost make sure you watch the replay of the conference on Eman channel Sky 857 on the following dates.
Saturday 4th June 6.30 pm & 9.30 pm
Sunday 5th June 5.30 pm & 8.30 pm
Stay tuned for all the Pre-Ramadan posts on the blog this week. May Allah SWT enable us to all witness the blessed month of Ramadan, Ameen.