Reflections On Advice And Ability

I have experienced a fair share of personal losses in my life. The traumatic incidences that literally shatter your core, slowly everything slips away from your grip,rendering you incapable of feeling anything else except for the blues. I have experienced grief-its various shades and also its paralyses. For most people, they seemed ordinary, and often times I found myself unable to explain as to why I was affected so much more than others. What happened to me has happened to a lot of people, then why did I grieve for so long? Why I am still sore? Why can I not be normal, even to this day?

For a long time, I did not have an explanation for myself.

We are all created differently-each with our unique tastes,sensitivities and even abilities. Everybody has different capacities-how much they can or can’t do. Similarly everyone reacts differently to hardships in life-even the common ones like sickness,death etc. For the same calamity,no two people react or feel the same. Some people are able to embrace their losses rather quickly, some take years, and some, never really.

When you counsel others who are going through difficult times, be mindful of their capabilities. It goes without saying that they would be able to relate to you better if you experienced something similar. But what you could during your ordeal might be beyond them. Perhaps you packed your lunch and headed back to work the next day , but that does not mean they must be able do the same.  You found your solace in the prayer and it helped you heal, come out stronger, but that does not mean they also will get it right away. And it really  has nothing to do with anyone being weak or strong, mentally or in faith. It just means our inner components are different. That is how Allah created us- with our individual limits. If you have seen a lot in life and someone hasn’t, you can’t expect them to have the same maturity and ability to deal with it as you. You have learnt through your experiences; they will learn through theirs. So suggest them according to how much they have seen in their lives, not yours.Give them examples and references from their lives-events they have experienced, felt, lived.

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If No One Understands You, Chances Are You Are Right

Stories in the Quran are not mere stories. They are real life incidents that have happened. The people are not just characters. They are human beings,with emotions and weaknesses like you and me.

Imagine being in the shoes of Musa’s mother,right after she went through the trauma of throwing her newborn in the deadly Nile, amidst crocs and gators passing by.Did she have any support? Could she have gone to anyone and talk about what she did? Would anyone believe her if she said that Allah inspired her to throw her baby?Afterall she was not a prophet. She was just an everyday believer like you and me.She had no one to counsel her,to tell her she was right.She even doubted her decision and was about to run after her baby.But then the soldiers would find him and kill him.

So Allah intervened and gave her every support that she needed.From giving her the firmness of heart to the ability to plan logically as to what to do next-everything was orchestrated by Him. Against every self-doubt and logic,she blindly held onto Allah-knowing that even if her logic and rationality fails, as long as she would cling on to Allah,He would look after everything for her.Allah became every support, every help, every means she would have needed to survive that challenging moment of her life.

So We restored him to his mother that she might be content and not grieve and that she would know that the promise of Allah is true. But most of the people do not know. (Quran 28:13)

When you feel there is no one who understands you, chances are you are right, because Allah already says that most people would not know about His promise. When others think that your decision to hold onto your faith is absurd, when you yourself do not know how to explain your faith, then understand that it is a legacy of this great woman Allah has bestowed you with. Allah does not describe her as anything other than a “Mumin”-a true believer. So follow her footsteps and let Allah be your support.Allow Him guide you through the gators of life, and be of the few to witness the truth of His promise.

Sometimes its okay if you are the lone soldier in your fight.

Rising Above The Traps Of Ordinary

When it comes to aiming big, wanting to achieve those seemingly impossible goals, most of us resort to the opposite. We are so scared of the “what ifs” that we can’t even look beyond that. We resort to thinking low, and aiming for only what seems achievable. What everyone around has achieved. We understand our limited capabilities, and unfortunately, proportionate our goals accordingly.

There is no judgement here. I have time and again been there. Even when I pushed myself to aim higher, the roadblocks of life always made me want to leave everything and give up. I realized it is safe to  lead the ordinary, customary life. Aim low, so even if you fail, it won’t hurt.

Such was the evening when I stumbled upon this verse.

If Allah is your helper none can overcome you, and if He withdraw His help from you, who is there who can help you after Him? In Allah let believers put their trust.-Quran(3:160)

I did’t even have to read it twice. For at the first read, it just hit me like a bolt, right there right then. To this day I believe it was not my own realization, rather Allah putting it directly on my heart. There are moments in life you encounter, a lot of them when reading the Quran (after all Quran is nothing but Allah talking to you), when you just know it is Allah. So this was one of those moments. Allah taught me that day giving up is not an option, as easy as it is, there is really no way around without getting the help of Allah.

What I learnt is that even for mundane things like breathing, Allah is carefully managing every coordination in our body to make sure that the rhythm is just right. Therefore, even to lead that life of ordinary,you and I will need Allah anyway.  So why not instead take His help for an extraordinary life? Because as far as Allah is concerned, His ability to help you is indifferent to your situation. He can help you lead either lives. Whichever life you want for yourself, as far as Allah is concerned, all He has to do is say “Be”, and it will happen. All you have to do it just put the effort and trust Him.

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Faith Corner: Hope Can Be Paralysing

One of the most profound stories of hope and belief in the Quran is Surah Yusuf. Allah narrates the journey of a father’s unwavering hope and trust in His Divine Ability, which changed the course of history.

For years Yaqoob AS held onto the belief of his missing son returning back to him. It is his unshakable belief in Allah that sustained him through this insurmountable loss. He lost his eye sight due to shedding incessant tears for his lost child.However,despite his full faith,instead of getting his son back,he lost two more of his sons. So as if one was not enough, now three of his sons were missing.

But his reaction was remarkable. Let alone sink in an abyss of doubt and despair, he actually hoped that even though they went missing years apart, Allah would perhaps bring them back together. As things kept getting worse,his expectations kept going up.He never thought Allah’s help was far.Even though things went downhill one by one, he didn’t expect them to get better likewise. On the contrary, he actually believed that Allah would give him everything back at once. Consequently, Allah did not disappoint him. All three of his sons came back together, his eyesight was restored and entire Egypt was saved.

Hope or depair-both can be paralysing. Choose wisely.Choose hope. Choose faith.  And allow it to cripple you, leave you incapable of feeling anything else.And then watch miracles unfold,right in front of your eyes.

 

First Day For A New Convert:Quick Tools

While you are still trying to figure out a way to get started, I wanted to give you these three words. They are of tremendous benefits (I have listed them) and will get the ball rolling. You can download the images and save as  wallpapers. Every time you use your phone you will automatically look at them- so within a day or two you will end up memorizing them, inshaAllah.

The most beloved deeds to Allah are those which are done consistently, even if they are smallProphet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

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