Shortage of time is a problem which we talk about quite a lot… especially when it comes to learning Quran or Hadith or doing some course to learn tafseer or memorize Quran or improve our recitation etc. We say we are already too busy in our routine chores and can hardly manage to do all our jobs on time. How can we spare time for “other” things? Well the answer is that all of us get the same amount of time but there are people who achieve a lot more than others… how? Because they live a life of discipline and focus… and one of the most important rule which they abide by is to get up early in the morning and make use of this “high quality” time. In Islamic terminology we call it the time of “barakah”… barakah means to be filled with an abundance of goodness and blessings. In fact our Prophetﷺ made special dua for us:
“O Allah put “barakah” for my Ummah in their mornings.”
This barakah is like a beautifully wrapped gift which Allah sends for us every single day of our lives but how many of us are willing to get up and open it and use its countless advantages? So many of our physical, psychological and spiritual problems can be solved simply by making use of this barakah… If we use our mind and body when they are at their maximum capacity for work, then we can achieve much more… and this will lead to an inner satisfaction which cannot be replaced by any other “medicine” in the world.
Previously I used to think that the high achievers have a natural tendency to fight desires or maybe they don’t have desires at all… but now I have realized the fact that they are also human and have weaknesses but the only difference is that they have decided not to follow the temptations and make utmost struggle to do the right thing in all situations.
So whenever I feel the temptation to get back in the bed after praying fajr… I “tell” myself that whatever I want from sleep… whether it is comfort or warmth or energy… all of it is found not in the bed but by staying out of it and doing some meaningful work which is loved by Allah… And whenever I am able to win against my desire and put myself to work… I get not only what I desire but something even greater than that… and that is the happiness of making Allah pleased with me… and this is one thing which has no other parallel in this world… But of course if you are not feeling well due to some illness or pain… then surely you can take some rest after praying fajr. Allah doesn’t want hardship for us but He also doesn’t like us to be lazy and lethargic for no valid reason.
This reminds me of the beautiful Hadith of our Prophetﷺ in which he said:
“The two rakahs of fajr are better than this world and all that is in it.”
Imagine all the valuable things of this world… gold and diamonds and pearls… beautiful houses… grand palaces… exquisite dresses… luxurious cars… private jets… all the luxuries of the world put together on one side and place the two rakahs of fajr on the other side… and still this seemingly small act will be more worthy… more precious and more valuable… The Prophetﷺ and His companions realized this fact and that is why we see that there was no self pity in their lives… they were never crying for their lack of material luxuries because they knew that they had something which was far more precious and worth having… and this was the secret of their strong hearts, strong minds, and strong bodies…
While we have all the luxuries and still we are not satisfied… not grateful… not happy… because we have fed our bodies with food… meal after meal… but the hearts do not get the food of Allah’s remembrance… and so it gets weak and miserable. But we can always turn back to Allah and make our hearts strong and happy. All we need is to take the first step. Allah rewards us beyond measure… like in the following Hadith:
“Whoever prays fajr in congregation; then keeps sitting in remembering Allah till sunrise, and then prays two rakah… then for him is the reward of a complete Hajj and Umrah…”
So if you dream of going to the House of Allah and have not been able to do so… then remember that Allah will give you the same reward by acting on this Sunnah. If you think you cannot do it daily then at least once a week let your heart experience the pleasure of Umrah and Hajj… inshaAllah.
Sometimes we hear things like it is enough to be a good human and so we don’t need to follow the “rituals”… Look at the following Hadith and decide what the definition of a “good” person is?
The Prophetﷺ said:
“When ever the sun rises all the creation of Allah does the “tasbeeh” (praise and glorification) of Allah except the devils and the “aata” type of people”
A companion asked: “who are these “aata” type of people?”
The Prophetﷺ said: “the worst among the human beings”
So where would we like to be among… the best or the worst?
Another Hadith to really make our hearts alert and active for praying fajr is as follows:
It was mentioned to the Prophetﷺ that a person kept sleeping till the morning and did not wake up for fajr. The Prophetﷺ said: “the devil urinated in his ears!”
You must have experienced that if on some day you oversleep and get up to find that the sun has risen and you didn’t remember to set the alarm or whatever… the whole body feels like beaten up and the head is full of heaviness and everything looks gloomy… well now we know the reason… so make sure that you never allow the devil to use you in such a way…
May Allah help us to act on what we learn and make us of those who live their lives in the shade of His mercy and protection… ameen.