Eid and Beyond by Dr Mohammad Manzoor Alam (July 26, 2014)
Dr. Mohammad Manzoor Alam
I am visiting you with this column for the third time in a month, instead of the usual once-a-month periodicity. As I stated earlier, this departure from routine is because of the significance of the holy month of Ramdhan.
Only in two to three days the holy month will come to an end, the remaining days depending on where you are located on the globe. The Prophet (PBUH) used to pray to God to allow him to “reach” the holy month.
From today there is only one odd night of the month left, that is the night of 29th of Ramdhan. Try to avail of this opportunity by keeping vigil all night. Spend these hours in prayer and dhikr.
By the way, it is important to remember that Lailat-al-Qadr should be sought for not just in the odd nights of the last ashra, but also in the whole ashra, both in odd and even nights. That way, you have a larger window of opportunity still open for you.
Good times never last. Ramdhan being the best of times, it passes even more quickly. Before you realise this great month will pass into eternity and Eid will come along. The passing of this month is sad like the passing of a friend, except that God rewards us with His blessings at the end, and Eid becomes a day of great rejoicing, celebration of God’s bounty and for thanksgiving.
Do enjoy Eid with family and friends and help the poor and indigent with the fitrah you pay so that some happiness spreads to them also. Compassion and empathy are lessons from Ramdhan to be treasured all our lives, much beyond the holy month. After having voluntarily abstained from food and drink we know what hunger and thirst means and how important it is to feed the hungry and provide water to the thirsty.
As this column is largely for the Muslim youth, they should spend the next eleven months doing hard work (in study, job, business etc.) praying consistently and living a life of honesty, piety and purity. Study and observation will give you the tools to understand life and come to terms with it.
You should always have clarity of thought and purpose. You have clarity of views only if you have knowledge. Thought minus knowledge is like a building without sufficiently firm foundations. Uninformed opinion is mere non-sense. So, study hard.
Finally, as a Muslim cultivate the habit of dhikr, or God’s remembrance through meditation and repeated incantation of His attributes either in your heart or in soft whispers, or both. It also means reading from the Quran and pondering over it to improve our lives and serve God and His creation better.
With dhikr also goes fikr, which is contemplation of God’s entire creation and His attributes. It involves great thought. That will open doors for you in this world and Hereafter. And please remember me in your prayers. Happy Eid.