Jun 2, 2015

How to Maintain a Ramadan Diary

By Anum Ali


Two years ago when I started writing my first Ramadan diary, online, I didn’t know that it would grow into a wonderful sisters’ blog. Furthermore, it evolved into a sisterly project - a combination of knowledge and entertainment. ‘Sisterly Yours’ is now a Facebook page listed amongst the ‘Top 100 Muslim Women Fan Pages’ according to a 2011 survey by the American Muslim Mom website. How it happened is a tale of some serious and dedicated diary-writing.

The Wonders of Writing a Ramadan Diary
In the year 2010, I embarked on the journey that I called the Muslim Dream. It is centered around a spiritual and physical struggle of becoming an ideal Muslim woman. Ramadan crossed my path and I took it as a starting point, I was going to begin with repentance. The theme of the Ramadan diary, therefore, was me seeking forgiveness from Allah, the Most Merciful.

There are two types of diaries with the first one being the personal diary and the second being a goal-oriented diary, and both help you discover yourself. When you combine the two types you get a beautiful chronological autobiography of your personal struggle. Recognizing and talking about your feelings and emotions helps you understand yourself. Your diary is an extended version of you. And, of course, you can always turn back the pages to read about your past events and emotions.

So when we speak of maintaining a Ramadan diary, we are talking about a 30 day log at the very minimum which keeps a record of physical, psychological, and spiritual state. It helps in setting up goals and the strategies to achieve them, manage time, and reflect on what we experience at the end of the day.

Choosing a Diary
It is entirely your own decision whether you wish to write in a classic leather-bound journal, a notebook, or type it out on your PC / laptop. It is again your choice whether you wish to keep it personal or publish it like I chose to do with my online Ramadan diary blog. If you choose to remain secretive you will not have to worry about confidentiality issues, criticism, and judgment by the readers. Your confidential expression will help you with emotional management without the feeling of being watched. However, going public will help you connect with productive communities and individuals with a similar Ramadan cause. You will have to sort through constructive and destructive criticism, though. If written for an audience, along with the personal development motive, a Ramadan diary could benefit the Muslim community at large.

Ramadan Diary Index
A diary written without much thought becomes more of a daily ranting blurb, however, a properly planned Ramadan diary will become a guidebook for your friends and family to benefit from. So, begin with a rough outline of your aims and objectives. Allah subhana wa ta'aala has already designated three ahraas (10 day periods) during Ramadan and their themes are rehmah (seeking blessings), maghfirah (seeking repentance), and nijaat (seeking riddance from hellfire). Your diary could have a three phase index based on how you struggled during the three ashraas. That’s how I maintain mine.

Daily Writing
Dairy writing is at its best when it’s being done consistently i.e. daily during Ramadan. The format of your entries is entirely up to you. I made it a point to include sections in my daily entries so it was an eclectic mix of knowledge and entertainment at the same time. It began with an introductory dua’a suited to the theme of the ashraa, for example, a dua’a for repentance in the second ashraa. I like including the latest from my favorite websites, so there was always a quote shared from Habibi Halaqas. It is a great idea to use Ramadan tools and resources like Productive Ramadan’s Taskinator which keeps a spiritual and physical log of your day. Websites also share beautiful quotes, hadith, and messages drafted on gorgeous, though-provoking graphics and I always use them to add life to my online diaries. The main idea is to speak about your day so it proves to be a reflection for you, an idea of what’s missing so you could incorporate that in your Ramadan routine.

Be Creative and Pass on the Ramadan Legacy
Your Ramadan diary, if written dedicatedly, could become an ideal gift for the Muslim community. If you’ve kept it personal, you can always choose to give it to your children or a special family member to benefit from your Ramadan tales. This way your Ramadan legacy can be well preserved. Many people get their diaries published and make the bestseller lists. Of course, they edit the details according to their preferences, but each individual’s Ramadan story is a heroic tale of how they have earned a special place in this world and the next by Allah’s Will.

I also feel that you might want to have a thorough recall of your previous Ramadan before you start the next to check how much you have evolved spiritually, and you can always take a trip down the memory lane by reading through your Ramadan diary.

Happy writing!


What a beautiful and wonderful idea,may ALLAH s.w.t bless you. I have a feww questions for you, if you dont mind answering. Firstly, I was very inspired by your idea of becoming the ideal Muslimah. I dont know how to say this, but hopefully you understand what Im saying. What criteria or goals did you set for being and Ideal Muslimah, meaning what was the Ideal Muslimah in your view. Sorry if that's a personal question, I dont mean to get personal or offend you. It's just that the idea of working towards being an ideal Muslimah piqued my interest, and I wanted to know exactly what or who an Ideal Muslimah is characterized as, so I too can INSHALLAH, work towards this goal as well.

My second question is can you give more insight and tips on how to structure a Ramadan Diary so it isnt just ranting?

be honest to yourself and to your soul.In that manner Allah will always guide you in your everyday Life.To become an ideal muslimah is easy, you can just follow the rules of the Al Qur'an.

salam good post 

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