I am in the same place doing the same thing………..working on the blueprint from the imprint.
From a while ago……….
It is morning, after we have been up since before fajr. There are twelve of us at this retreat, one teacher and the rest students. Each one of us is a novice in her own way. The young women and some of the older woman have never done this before.
We woke up few hours before fajr, came to the prayer area, and started our tahajjud. Even though tahajjud is such an intensely personal prayer, somehow having the silent company of friends and daughters makes it comforting and soothing despite the early hour. Sleep is far away, as we learn from each other what to say in the long sajdah, the more experienced sharing with us the etiquette of prayer and communication with our Lord.
Soon it is time for Fajr, Sister H rises, and Sister N calls the iqama. All twelve of us fall in line silently and perfectly, adjusting our dress and our focus to connect with Him (SWT). For a split moment there is that feeling of intense anticipation and nervousness that one has before an important meeting. The desire to make sure everything is in order before we make the call to Him (SWT).
The evening before, Sister H explained how salaaat is a conversation with Allah so when we call with Alhamdollillah ………..He (SWT) answers. Thus as she begins the first rakaat, I notice that she pauses after each ayah. ……awaiting His (SWT) response. The surah read in the first rakat is long and her voice gives it a soft rhythm merging with the sound of the ocean, intensifying my desire to learn Quranic Arabic so that I could flow with the meaning.
After salaam, each one of us settles down for our morning adkaars. The sky is turning pink slowly as we ask Him for everything under the sky……….I always feel a little awkward doing this, asking Him for so much after such a short prayer, nevertheless it is a Sunnah so there is a reason for it if Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) did it.
Some of the girls go out to walk on the beach. The sun begins to rise and we complete our duas and stand for Ishraaq.
After being up for Tahajjud, one thing is certain those two hours of sleep after Ishraaq is sweet.
After the short nap post Ishraaq, and breakfast, we move out onto the porch, which overlooks the ocean.
She opens the pages of Surah Naml……..who would have thought that the essential message in part of Surah Naml would be to organize your life…..the ants one of the worlds most organized creatures are detailed in here.
The second take home message in the Surah is that when we hear some news good or bad, confirm it, thus Suleyman (AS) sends the hudhud to confirm and bring back relevant information.
Thirdly, to think before acting and act with grace, this is illustrated best in the actions of Sulayman AS and Queen Sheba.
Finally, the concept of Shuraa (consultation) and non-violent resolution of problems, which is also, mentioned elsewhere in the Quran.
I have changed from the inside out, in these past few years. I have not changed my schedules at work and have not redefined my goals as I have been drifting, going where Allah SWT is taking me. It seems now that I need to make some changes in my life both at work and otherwise so that I can grow in my Deen and make my house in Akhirah………..so I am here to brainstorm myself with the Quran, tafseer and lots of khalwah and reflection.
Please make dua that I come to the right recipe for the rest of what is left of my time in dunya. The goal being jannah.
What is your recipe for your path to jannah and a house in Firdous?