Aug 20, 2012

Keeping The Ramadan Spirit Alive

By Zainab Cheentavida


“And worship your Lord until there comes to you the certainty (death).”[Al-Hijr: 99] 

It is a sad, yet common state of affairs that many Muslims forget their religion after the passing of Ramadan. This month should be a chance for self-improvement and transformation that should continue on through the rest of your life. You should not carry the intention that the goodness you participate in is only for a limited number of days and the evil you refrained from is only for a temporary while. This intention is not sincere - one of the requirements of a deed to be accepted. Keep in mind, an action committed is not necessarily an action accepted. We should be more concerned towards the acceptance of our deeds than the quantity of how much we offer, although it is also very important. By continuing the limits and goals we set in Ramadan and extending it to our daily lives we will be able to keep the Ramadan spirit alive.

Refrain from evil 
One sin eventually leads to the other, until it consumes us whole and our hearts are soaked with love for it. It is common in Ramadan that many of us choose to refrain from various haram or wasteful activities such as listening to music, or watching television. It is also common, unfortunately, that many people return to these activities after Ramadan. The heart cannot have equal love between haram and halal, it is Allah’s right that your heart is only filled with love of him. You had a whole month where you successfully abstained from these acts, speech or thoughts - now continue to abstain from them, lest you fall back into them again. Even better, if you can remove sources of these distractions from your home permanently (such as the T.V) try and do so during this Holy month so that it will become more difficult to return to it afterwards. Islam is not a religion where one can pick and choose so from freely, it must be taken as a whole. Don’t take evil habits lightly and remove them as best as you can before they take root.

O you who have believed, enter into Islam completely [and perfectly] and do not follow the footsteps of Satan. Indeed, he is to you a clear enemy. [Al-Baqarah: 208] 

Read And Study the Qur’an
No doubt that the recitation of the Qur’an on a daily basis and the understanding and applications of its wisdom and lessons are one of the backbones of leading an Islamic life. Ramadan is known as the month of the Qur’an. The Qur’an though, was not just sent to be read only in Ramadan. The preservation of the Qur’an and the (inheritance of knowledge) that comes with it is a huge blessing bestowed upon us. The fact that it has been given to you is no mere coincidence. As with material things, take advantage of this blessing to constantly guide and remind yourself of the truth of this life. We need guidance in our day to day lives, and the Qur’an serves as a guidance for us.

It is He who sends down upon His Servant [Muhammad] verses of clear evidence that He may bring you out from darknesses into the light. And indeed, Allah is to you Kind and Merciful.
[Al-Hadid: 9] 

This is a mercy that has been sent to us and it is our duty to understand its contents. Add it in your schedule to study and read the Qur’an. There are many online resources (such as and that have online podcasts on the tafseer of the Qur’an. The Qur’an should be your best friend and you’ll need it on your journey through life.

Pursue Good Deeds
Remember those extra sunnahs you prayed before and after fard prayers, or when you got up early each morning to pray witr. You must’ve have gotten used to doing them over such a period. Then why not continue the habit?

Narrated 'Aisha (r): The Prophet was asked, "What deeds are loved most by Allah?" He said, "The most regular constant deeds even though they may be few." He added, 'Don't take upon yourselves, except the deeds which are within your ability." [Bukahri] 

By pursuing righteous deeds and filling our hearts with goodness not only will it wipe out previous sins but it serves as a protection from committing great evils. A Muslim should grab every chance of good they are presented with. Whatever you can do – do it. Or else you’ll regret them on a very heavy day. Every ounce of sincere effort you put out counts, and every bit brings you closer to Allah. And every time you come closer to Allah, Allah comes even closer to you.

Abu Dharr (Radhi-Allah-hu 'anhu) reported: Messenger of Allah (salAllahu alayhi wa sallam) said: "Do not disdain a good deed, (no matter how small it may seem) even if it is your meeting with your (Muslim) brother with a cheerful face.'' [Muslim]

Surround yourself with Good Company
A packed masjid is surely one of the signs of Ramadan. Everyone gathers at these places of worship so that inshAllah they are rewarded for their efforts. In the same manner, find yourself decent friends who strive in the way of Allah so that you may benefit from them.

The Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam said "A person is likely to follow the faith of his friend, so look whom you befriend.” [Abu Dawud and At Tirmidhi] 

Limit your ties with those who threaten your iman and encourage sin. Your relationships should not get in the way of your duty towards Allah subhaanahu wa ta'aala. There are shaitan among jinn and men so treat those people as your enemy. You would not try and imitate your enemy so that you could please them would you? You can’t be friends with your Lord and shaitan both. It has to be one over the other.

"Oh, woe to me! I wish I had not taken that one as a friend. He led me away from the remembrance after it had come to me. And ever is Satan, to man, a deserter." [Al-Furqan: 28-29] 

For many of us our lack of iman roots from our desire to fit in with society, to be accepted and acknowledged as one of them in compromise for our religion. Our values, behaviours and customs are inherited from those around us. So become aware and cautious. It is better to be alone then become close with the one who crosses the limits of Allah subhaanahu wa ta'aala.

Duaa and Dhikr
And whoever is blinded from remembrance of the Most Merciful - We appoint for him a devil, and he is to him a companion.

"And indeed, the devils avert them from the way [of guidance] while they think that they are [rightly] guided.” [Al-Zukhruf: 36-37] 

Seeking help from Allah subhaanahu wa ta'aala for every problem or challenge you encounter and glorifying and praising with every moment we have shouldn’t be looked up on lightly. In fact, one aspect of tawheed is ooloohyahaah, meaning to thank Allah subhaanahu wa ta'aala alone as only He is deserving of it. Once we turn away from the remembrance of Allah subhaanahu wa ta'aala we invite the shaitain in.

Du'a reveals our dependency on Allah subhaanahu wa ta'aala. The Prophets and Messengers themselves used to constantly seek their Lord, so we are no exception. Once you rely on Allah subhaanahu wa ta'aala, you will find strength within yourself. Your perception on life will not be the same. Recognize and trust your Lord through du'a and Dhikr. Just as a robber takes what is light in weight and heavy in value, you must apply the same concept. It is not easy for all of us to get up early in the morning to pray tahajjud and witr, but Dhikr should be no exception.

By making Islam your source of life and the pleasure of your Lord your utmost goal, the spirit that many only manifest in Ramadan shall continue with for the rest of your life.

I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)


Asalamu alykum wAwb!

Aww I loved reading this! Very beautifully written, and easy to read and understand. Jazaki Allah khair for such an amazing piece!

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