Sleep and Awareness (episode-5)

The difference between information and knowledge is that information touches just our intellect; and knowledge touches our hearts. And since the heart is the centre of our being and through it the blood reaches each and every cell of our body, therefore only true knowledge can motivate us into the right direction.

And true knowledge can only be attained with an open heart… a heart which admits its ignorance… a heart which seeks to be purified of all bad things… a heart which loves to be filled with the light of Allah’s guidance… a heart which longs to feel the love of Allah above all things…

So we should make dua to Allah to open our hearts for the true and beneficial knowledge and enable us to act on it, so that we succeed in this short and temporary life and also in the real and infinite life of the hereafter.

Coming back to the topic of “sleep”… here are a few more etiquettes that have been taught by our Prophet (SAW) to ensure that we have good healthy sleep which not only fulfils our physical need but also becomes a source of Allah’s remembrance…

Etiquette-14… on the right side

Allah’s messenger taught us to always sleep on the right side. It has many benefits if you think about it but the thing which touches me most is that as soon as I turn on my right side, I can almost visualize my beloved Prophet (SAW) in the same posture and that connects my heart to Allah with so much love and gratitude that He has blessed us with the Hadith through which we can follow and love our Prophet (SAW).

The most evident benefit in following this Sunnah is that it relieves the heart of excessive pressure and causes it to relax. And also because in Islam most things are done by starting with the right side; maybe because it puts you in the right frame of mind!

It is permissible to turn sides during sleep or when you start feeling stiff and want to turn the other way… but always start with lying on your right side.

Etiquette-15… the right hand under the right cheek

This is another Sunnah of our Prophet (SAW) which enables us to truly relax and feel comforted… as you face towards the right side simply put your right hand under the right cheek.

Just doing this small act makes me feel like I am being protected by Allah from all that worries me or scares me… So imagine if you can feel it every night and truly relax with no worries on your mind, how beautiful your sleep can become and how positive you will feel in the morning!!

Can anybody tell us such a simple relaxation technique, which takes no extra time or effort, but has such an amazing impact on our whole life…? Each and every Sunnah of our Prophet (SAW) is a treasure in itself but what a great loss we suffer when we deprive ourselves of this wonderful knowledge which was meant to make our lives so full of energy and productivity…

Etiquette-16… Do not turn upside down!

If sleeping on the right side can put you into the right perspective then imagine what will happen to your life if you sleep upside down… you don’t need to be a genius to figure out this simple equation, I’m sure!!

Our Prophet (SAW) specifically said that this is disliked by Allah and its seriousness can be felt by the following Hadith:

A companion of the Prophet (SAW), Abu Dhar (RA) has narrated that once he was lying on his stomach when the Prophet (SAW) walked past him, He touched him with his foot and said: “O my dear Jundub! Indeed this way of lying down belongs to the people of the fire.”

Can you see the beauty of our Prophet’s speech and the kindness in his warning? Just in one sentence he has expressed his love for his companion by using a nickname and simultaneously warned him about not to do something which resembles the people of the fire. This is why people listened to him and loved him more than anything else. Because He (SAW) was caring for their well being… his warnings were not to let them down… his heart was full of love for them and it showed in the way he corrected them. He made them feel that he wanted to save them… he didn’t want them to get hurt by these bad habits…

Sadly we have failed to follow his footsteps and now when we want to inform others about their mistakes, we do it the wrong way and then we go around complaining that no one listens to us… Love and care are the ingredients which we all want for ourselves but are not ready to give to others…

On the other hand we lack the humbleness required for self improvement. And so when someone points out our errors, even in a kind way, we become defensive and think it to be an attack on our “self-esteem” which is just a fancy word for a spoilt ego… Because if you are really sincere about reaching your destination then you should thank the person who tells you that you are going in the wrong direction. But this needs an open heart to do so… and we should pray to Allah for our hearts to be free from the blindness of self-praise and self-righteousness so that we can really progress in our quest for success.

(More later inshaAllah)

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