“Assalamo Alaikum!” My friend Seema had called. “What’s going on?” she asked.
“I’m celebrating my Friday.” I told her happily. (Meaning: end of week, weekend, fun-time.)
“Celebrating Friday or …..” Her pause made me pause too.
She is one of my very religious friends. Actually she is an authority on it. She spent not only one year in the Al Huda International Academy but also did a four year course which is done by aalimas from a well known Madrassa here in Islamabad.. Now, she teaches in an academy. So, when she pauses… it makes me think.
Yet, at the same time, she is the one with a great sense of humor. She loves and enjoys literature, and loves me too, in spite of all my shortcomings. She is truly a great, loving and caring friend.
So, I stopped. After our usual conversation which of course had Iqbal’s poetry and was peppered with Ghalib’s too; I put my phone down to realize her point. She was saying that when Friday comes, we are focused on how to make this weekend all those things like ‘fun’ and ‘outings’ and ‘housework’, how much do we also think of our spiritual side of it?
Remember the Sabbath? There was this talk of doing nothing, not even cooking during one day of the week – which would be Sunday, or in the case of most Muslim countries, a Friday. What-ever. The point is that in this unit of seven days, we need one day to unwind, and reconnect with our inner selves. Yes, the soul, the spirit and our Maker. To revise our own progress as human beings “– what if I pop off tomorrow?” – would I be ready?
Here we are discussing what Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan are up to. Blaming one thing or the other for this or that. In the end, I’ll only have to answer for myself. Am I doing what I was destined to do?
To, re-align myself spiritually is important, and which day/time have I allotted to myself for it? This is for all ages, my dears. How many of us, know if we will grow ‘old’ or not. So, keeping our spiritual side alive is important for all ages. – Like that six year old student of mine Gul-e-Lala who passed away to her heavenly abode, all those years ago. So, at least we need one day in the week to be free to deal with becoming the best we can be…
If I don’t do it on a Friday, or Sunday, then which other day of week do I have for it? That is, if we have allotted a day at all.
So, in these 24 hours of (Friday or Sunday,) I’m sure I can find at least ten minutes or 30 minutes….
It would feel great!
You know those days, when your multi problems are only multiplying? You are feeling you are the only sane person around. This world has mostly been insane, but I have to focus on myself first. That begins with spiritual strengthening.
So, how do I do it?
In short, keeping a daily link through these helps:
Pray: Five times a day and a few extras.
Meditate: the simple word ‘Allah’ or Who-ever you name Him as. Just that one word. Repeat slowly, with deep breathing and concentration. Detach from all other thoughts.
Reading Quran with meanings: or whichever holy book you read. Read it regularly.
Time for another flashback.
I’m sitting in a C-130. It is hot, air conditioning isn’t on while it is on tarmac. So, I’m perspiring. The noise is so much conversation is impossible. I take out my Holy Quran, a beautiful one gifted to me, translated by Zafar Ishaq Ansari. As I read, I feel Mrs. Tariq Shahab gesture at me. I look up. She says “Reading Surah Kahaf every Friday makes your week go well.” I’d not known that.
I look it up, starting with the incident of the cave, it goes on to discuss the travels of Moses. What about it? Then, it dawns on me. It is all about the fact, that a lot going on in this world is beyond our understanding. We make our own interpretations of things happening around us. Whereas, most of these are all part of His plan. He knows better. So, in our lack of understanding we tend to over-react or feel that things are being done the wrong way. We just need to trust Him, and get on with our lives in the best possible way, in spite of all these things. We are not answerable for them.
But we are answerable for ourselves. Reading the incidents of the making of a hole in a boat, or building up an old broken wall etc. have deeper meanings. Such things, are ‘dots’ which get connected into a whole picture at another time in our lives when suddenly they make sense.
Today, is not that day.
Just trust Him. Here is what to do now, on a Friday:
- Give rest, food and spiritual strengthening to yourself to get ready for the next week.
- Plan week ahead to complete all chores during the week, and not leaving anything of the week for the weekend. So, you can relax. – Are you going to be your own enemy by actually leaving work of the week for the weekend? No! Next week, plan things better, please.
- Relllaaaxxxxx. Meet people who keep you sane and happy, only.
- Go to places that re-charge you instead of discharging you!
Most important of all –
Stay blessed my dear Reader, with your wonderful smile. 🙂