Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh, my dear brothers and sisters.
I’m busy humming Yusuf Islam’s ‘Ramadhan Moon’ song in my head now (Moon, moon, come out soon…) looking forward to the start of Ramadhan. There’s a strong sense of togetherness as my family and I (all 15 of us!) sit down to iftar, passing the food around.
We have a rule in our family; we take turns buying dessert otherwise we would end up with too much food. The person whose turn it is gets to buy whatever they want and since every one gets a chance, we all get to eat our favourite dessert. (refer previous post ‘ Food for Thought’ Surah Al A’raf, verse31)
Last year, I gave an assignment to my 11 year old students to write down what their Ramadhan Resolution is. Now we all know the hoopla coming up with New Year’s Resolutions but think about it…Is that time of year really the best time to begin making consistent changes in our lives? End of the year, lots of parties and people to meet, a new job/school term to begin etc. So, it’s doubtful we can actually focus on our resolution and stick to it!
But, during Ramadhan, our spirit and soul is a little calmer and we usually already intend to be nicer/ more punctual doing prayers/ reading more Quran etc so why not sit down and really write out a firm Ramadhan Resolution..?
The reason this is the best time to begin positive changes in our lives is because we know from what our beloved Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. has said. Abu Huraira narrated that Allah’s Messenger (p.b.u.h.) said : “When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of the heaven are opened and the gates of Hell are closed and the devils are chained.” [Bukhari] There’s another hadith which supports making changes in the month of Ramadhan. Arfajah said “We were with `Utbah Ibn Farqad while he was discussing Ramadan. A companion of the Prophet entered upon the scene. When `Utbah saw him, he became shy and stopped talking. The man (the companion) spoke about Ramadan, saying “I heard the Messenger of Allah say during Ramadan: ‘The gates of Hell are closed, the gates of Paradise are opened, and the devils are in chains. An angel calls out : ‘O you who intend to do good deeds, have glad tidings. O you who intend to do evil, refrain, until Ramadan is completed.”” [Ahmad and an-Nasa’i]
We won’t have the devils whispering to us as we try to wake up earlier before sahur and pray voluntary 2-rakaahs of Tahajjud. Or remember to thank Allah Almighty more often for His blessings. Or try to be more gentler to our children and spouse. The probability of success is much higher in this environment of tranquil heart and higher taqwa. Cool, huh..?
It’s another 6 days to go before the start of Ramadhan. My sons and I have already started thinking about our Ramadhan Resolutions. Mine has been playing at the back of my mind for the past few days. I learnt Optimal Brain Organization (Brain Gym) earlier this year and definitely became better organized in my work space so I want to take it to the next level by organizing my (piles and piles) of handwritten notes so it’s easier to find. (I just realised I lost a very important module this morning. Inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi raji’un. Alhamdulillah, maybe this will give me a chance to do it differently this time…)
What are your thoughts on making a Ramadhan Resolution? If you would like to share your Ramadhan Resolution, feel free to forward it to me and I’ll post it! (Insha’Allah)