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This is beautiful. Please click on the image below to read the full post, and make a prayer for my father’s soul. May God reward you.

Peace,

A.S.

 

I wrote the below words in dedication to my father (may God have mercy on his soul). He passed away on August 11, 2019 due to cancer. “Ya Shaheed” Inna lillahi wa ina ilayhi la raji-oun. To Allah (God) we belong and to him do we return. O’ you who returned your face glowed like […]

via Ya Shaheed — missrana

“Ya Shaheed” (by Rana)

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Life’s Unavoidable Plot Twist

Top Hat

By virtue of a thing being called alive, it is assumed that something with life, at some point, will die. It’s so obvious of a fact that I’m embarrassed to be even writing this intro.

But that’s why I’m writing this: sometimes it is the most glaringingly obvious that is the easiest to ignore – whether deliberate or unconsciously. Death is the one complete certainty in any life – regardless what faith you have, what experiences you’ve had, where you are or where you’re going, I’m sure it’s safe to say that we can all agree on one solid point: we are all going to die, at some unknown point in time.

Yet we still never see it coming.

And when we do, ironically we only think that it can be coming for us – because it’s more comforting to acknowledge the death of yourself, as you know how hard you’re trying to be better ;you pray God finds goodness in you you were never arrogant enough to spoil. Every second of being alive is another second to make things right; within your soul, between your fellow brothers and sisters in humanity, and ultimately (what it all ties into from start to end) your devotion and relationship with God. If we do not keep death in the back of our minds as this bleak but definite expected guest, making amends and making the most of every moment might be stalled more than we’d like.

So here’s a plot twist: we expect our own lives will end any moment, but living in a non-violent and relatively safe place, we rarely consider that a dear loved one’s life, or someone that they care about, might die.

Let me share a story with you: When I was a very young girl, my kind-hearted grandmother died (may Allah have mercy on her soul). I did not know her very well – only met her once, that summer before – so I was still unable to comprehend the enormity of the loss. It was only as I grew older and learned stories of her wisdom, strength, courage and bravery that I felt crushed I never truly got to have her a part of my childhood. Her death was not a very sudden occurrence: she was increasingly ill for days before she went back to her Lord. Despite the clarity of where her condition was heading, it was still as shocking of a fact, like a bucket of ice water thrown in your face, for everyone. I remember seeing the adults cry; and after some raw conversations with a family friend whose father passed away earlier this week, I realized something: humanity runs on hope.

No matter how bad things get, with or without knowing it, humans live, breathe, swim and exist in a protective sphere of hope. You never give up hope in those you care about. You never want to even fathom the idea that someone you love, or someone that your loved one loves, could possibly be living one day and buried the next. Somehow our own alive-ness makes things falsely appear as though everyone else’s alive-ness is equally stable. If I’m alive, so must everyone else be… right?

Right?

Alas, it is not such.

I’m writing this to drill it in myself that death is real, death is more real than my conviction that I will wake up tomorrow. Death is more likely to happen than all my wildest dreams and plans that I’m hoping will occur in the future.

I’m not throwing these words on the page to erase all positivity – on the contrary! One doesn’t curl up in despair at the thought of death, but one shouldn’t give it the cold shoulder in the false notion that it can be shrugged away at our mere whim.

Despite the Blinds

Death is the fuel that reminds you

to never stop telling people that you love them,

to never hold grudges against the stupid but well-meaning,

to never hesitate to make the most of a human interaction,

and above all,

to never stop being the best version of yourself that you can be.

 

An elderly person told me yesterday: “I’ve been in Canada for over 25 years. Ooooh, how time flies! It all feels like a day has flown by.”

Death is so real, so undeniable, but easily the most denied thing. No one wants to talk about it (not exactly the most popular dinner party topic) until it hits. But every story has a plot twist, and our lives – one long complicated story – must have its plot twists as well.

The plot twist of life, is death. To God we belong, and to Him we return.

إِنَّا لِلّهِ وَإِنَّـا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعونَ


May God make us steadfast on His love & His pleasure, and surround us with His mercy. Ameen.

 

& Allah knows Best.

-A.S.

Dear Diary: My Writing Has Died

I have no desire to write anymore.

Actually, that is a little extreme, so allow me to rephrase that: I have lots of desire to write, but I simply seem to have nothing worthy to write about. There are tons of things I’m learning everyday but I am lacking the elegant ways of expressing them. Besides creating fragmented poetry pieces here & there, I think this is the longest writer’s block I have experienced in quite a while.

“there are days

where i feel infertile

like no more poems will come

like all the words there were

to be weaved by me

have been weaved

and i am unable

to create anything.”

(Rupi Kaur)

Isn’t it interesting that the younger & less knowledgeable me had an ocean of things to say, and keen enough to make the time to share it with the whole virtual world? Yet now, when I actually have the time to write, it’s no longer an option; I toss the pen aside, thinking Who am I, anyways, to write on these things, and what do I REALLY have to say that is both of value & which I’m actively applying to myself simultaneously?

You see, my criteria for what I can, would and should share with hearts external to my own has changed over time, becoming more constricted. In person, I might speak spontaneously sometimes, so I try to measure & weigh my words prior as much as possible when I can (such as in writing).The fact is, as human beings, we do more talking than walking… more preaching than acting… more judging than understanding… and I am no different. I am trying to rise above that.

I suppose the older I get and with the “more wisdom” I acquire, the more I realize that life is a strict teacher with the ultimate lesson to not have too many assumptions about the way the world works, and especially on the way people are. When a shareable idea flickers across my mind, I hesitate; I’m probably wrong, I think; the inclination to write decreases; and eventually I decide my words are of very little necessity or use to anyone.

Sketching pad

But I’ve come to realize something lately. There is a void in me. I take on new hobbies & interests and still I feel incomplete. This feeling is only absent when I… wait for it… express myself through writing.

Writing academic essays & educational blog posts for professional development purposes is not the same as sorting through jumbled thoughts & trying to understand myself. They are both useful and beneficial, yes, but in different ways and for different purposes.

When I say my writing has flattened, I am talking about the kind that involves heart-felt sentences I put out there, allowing myself to be vulnerable to the scrutiny of strangers (and most frighteningly, people I know) while experiencing a sheer bliss feeling of realizing how many others are experiencing the same thing through the feedback. Sharing one’s writing is a bold act, an act of community, and I have allowed myself to stumble away from it.

When my writing habit died, so did a little part of myself.

It’s like suddenly losing a bunch of teeth and much of what passes through your lips becomes pronounced wrong – likewise, without the exercise of writing, my thoughts remain constricted in my mind & create tension in my heart, muddling my concentration, because I’m not quite sure what is going on inside of me.

“i write because

i don’t know

how i feel

until i read it.” 

(Rupi Kaur)

Out of the many Ramadan goals I have set for myself this blessed month, one of them is to write again… regularly. I will reflect on certain Quranic passages as sources of inspiration to get started. (InshaAllah… stay tuned!)

For all future posts, I intend to weigh my words beforehand, but nonetheless that does not guarantee that every post will provide unique insights to every reader; and that’s perfectly okay. I will not pretend to believe that I am your golden chest of treasured words.

But they are my words, which tell my story… and they are coming back to life. Fasting is reviving my soul, and writing shall revive my spirit.

revival

And Allah (God) knows best.
-A.S.

A Name

Walking in the rain has me musing about the most random of stuff… like names.

Fantasy-sky-wallpaper

An ensemble of basic settlers

That came from a land of alphabetic letters

A simple initially empty word

That soon creates a crowded world,

Of oohs and aahs, of wows and hows

Or of yucks and tongue clucks, of sighs and rolling eyes–

A name.

Now allow your imagination to run amiss

And try really hard to picture this:

You stumble on a name of someone gone

Yet the name bears a legacy as bright as the dawn…

The name is associated with success & cleverness

The name is associated with intelligence & self-agence

A name.

The name became a brand, leaves a mark where it lands

The name was given life after the named left this life

A simple ensemble of lines called single letters

Meaningless at birth but meaningful seemingly forever–

A name.

And everywhere you encounter this name

It is always honored in some fancy hall of fame

And now take your imagination one step higher

And get ready for this – oh baby, you’re on fire! –

Because picture for a moment it’s not just a name…

A name. Your name.

… So what?

At the end of the day, the sun’s glory sets

Just as the body dies when comes its death

But the soul lives on in the reality of eternal states

Whether or not your name is written on dirt or clean plates

To leave behind a legacy and be fondly known

Should never be for a moment a goal on its own

Because your reputation and character are not always the same

Do not sacrifice the sacred for turning life into a game

A word that leaves behind meaning so incredibly much

But does it really mean as deeply as such…?

A name.

flying wallpapers letters background wallpaper

–A.S.