I wish you a warm welcome as we embrace the coming of a new Ramadhan.
In this month, I made a resolution to continue where I left off months ago (February to be exact) in updating this blog. There will be daily reflections, insyaAllah, so do check us out regularly! I hope it will facilitate me in my own personal journey, and in the process, may be of some value to my readers.
Ramadhan has a special place in my heart. Particularly, since I have been privileged to know many new Muslims and "re-born" Muslims who will undergo the deed of fasting for the first time every year. In all reality, they inspire me in my own journey of fasting. They keep my appreciation of Ramadhan afresh, each year.
I am reminded of Allah's words, which means: “Allah intends for you ease and does not intend for you hardship and [wants] for you to complete the period, and to glorify Allah for that [to] which He has guided you; that perhaps you will be grateful.” [al-Baqarah 2:185]
Therefore, I urge you, to re-look at our perspective of fasting. Allah s.w.t. intends felicity for us, so that we can increase our glorification of Him, that perchance we can be cultivated into becoming grateful servants. All these are achieved through the deed of fasting. If we understand this, fasting will be easy and not a burden for us. Only then can we benefit from all that the trainings of fasting can offer.
Another important point which requires mention at the beginning of our fasts is this - the discipline of fasting is an on-going process for Muslims. It is not a one-month-in-a-year event. Unfortunately, most of us reached many spiritual peaks in this month only to revert to our old self with the advent of Syawal. For example, we are successful in waking up early to perform night vigils in Ramadhan, yet finds it difficult to wake up for Fajr on time on any other months. We consume moderate amounts of food in the month of Ramadhan, yet gorge ourselves with celebratory foods on the days of Syawal, and beyond. We complete reading the Qur'an in Ramadhan, but finds it cumbersome to read on any other months. The list goes on...
If only we treat Ramadhan as our training month to equip ourselves with a better lifestyle for the other months, then we will be more successful individually and as a community. Only then, we will stop uttering the limpid lament at the end of every Ramadhan: "Oh, how sad I am to have my dear friend (Ramadhan) leaves me" - because in reality, a Muslim who understands the true nature of Ramadhan, carries the spirit and discipline of Ramadhan with him/her throughout the year. It is no surprise that the deed of supererogatory fasting is a highly encouraged deed beyond Ramadhan - so that we are always reminded of the lessons throughout the year.
Remain resolute. Do not give up when your thirst and hunger urge you to do so. Strive, for how can you be transformed when you are not challenged. Embrace and enjoy the process that fasting has to offer.
May this blessed month facilitate in the improvement of your Taqwa, enhancement of your intimacy and experience in the Divine. Strive to be a beautiful person - inside and outside - pleasing to Allah s.w.t. and His Beloved s.a.w.
May you leave Ramadhan a better person than when you entered it. Continue being a source of blessings to all around you.