Food for the soul #1

I’d much rather skip the intro, I have nothing to say about myself but now that I’m planning this hopefully informative post out in my head i’m seeing how i’d feel more comfortable about my page having a post before this one (you’ll understand once I get into it)…

So onto the taboo topic of menstrual cycles and  Islam and Ramadan. Hurrah I said it, now onto the details.

Often during these couple of days us women can experience a dip in our imaan (faith) and this depends on each individual and how they deal with it. But for some that particular week can be a rather terrible one where all you want to do is lay in bed and cry for no absolute reason simply because your emotions are all over the place. For some (Calling out myself and others like me) there is that issue where you feel a thousand miles apart from Allah swt and this alone can be a terrible gloomy feeling. Not being able to pray or read the quran from the actual holy book can seriously be a hard thing for some. And then there’s me who tries to feel some what more connected to Allah and so prances around the house wearing her abaya or home jalabiya gown type of thing (my north africans and arabs will understand this reference) and a hijab the whole day. Literally the whole day simply because without it I feel like I’m on the dark side with my religion. And then there are the uber happy ladies who feel better than ever and are super excited because they can finally paint their nails. That would be me on once in a while. Those are what I call the months where you and your period are the best of friends and you are actually productive and feel like you’re on top of the world, you do your adhkar, duaas erthang. So it’s not all grey for us ladies really.

But the moral of the story so far is we all have these crazy moments where we are all over the place and as a result we end up feeling distanced and that connection we hold with our Almighty Lord is disconnected during the days we are impure.

But there is a solution alhamdulillah and firstly to begin with, it is down to us to take control of ourselves and make the time for a few minutes of peace and tranquility. In praying, reading quran, suplicating Him, reciting hadiths we are connecting with Allah as each one of these acts of worship create a connection between us and the Almighty. The strength of that connection depends on our sincerity in the act of worshipping.

During these periods of the day when we feel far from the truth of the reality and are constantly in our own bubble for 24 hours the way to break it is through ibada (worship) during the five prayer times. If one is at home during this time than even better as you are in your comfort zone and can prepare yourself for ten minutes at each prayer time for dhikr, tasbih and duaa. By doing this we can re-connect with Allah swt and stay in touch with Him through our day and this way keep the momentum flowing so what we practice on a daily basis is not dropped completely only the fard we cannot do. Sometimes it’s harder to get back into the routine of doing our daily duties once the cycle is completed and so that’s where the emphasis is placed on continuing and struggling with ourselves even during tough times so that we do not drop or weaken that bond and connection we have. Thus sitting down to carry out tasbih such as la ilaha ila llah, subhanallah, alhamdulillah and also istighfar and many more are small acts which can help us to remain focused on the game and our goals of what status we want to reach with Allah on the day of judgment. Ofcourse we can suplicate Him at any time of the day but through doing it specifically at the times of the prayers we are disconnecting from the world and connecting with Allah. It’s a way of coming back to our One, our Creator and sparing a few moments to look in which direction we are heading with our lives.

I’m not quite finished with this post yet though, because its ramadaaaann and that is like the deal breaker well for me anyway. It’s like I have this amazing plan of how many pages of the quran I’m going to read and which surahs I want to memorise and then the period comes along and is like ”uhh no no” or maybe its not necessarily the period but shaytan getting in my head and whispering lazy thoughts so I turn into an unproductive slump. That situation always confuses me because I have no one to blame so lets continue with blaming the period. Yes?

So here are a few tips to surviving the month and making sure you complete the quran and whatever you have planned:

1. Continue reading the quran; yes we have no excuse with all the technology we have nowadays. I always like to perform a mini wudu and prep myself how I would for salah and sit down to read on my phone and then updating my quran sticky notes so I remember what I have read so far.

2. Wake up at fajr like any other day of ramadan; sleeping through ruins the routine you just got used to and plus that is the time when duaa is accepted so we digging the bonuses by sticking to the same routine. You can have your lie in afterwards and treat yourself to a cuppa as usual.

Abu Hurairah (radiAllahu anhu) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (salAllahu alayhiwasalam) said: ‘In the last third of every night our Rabb  (Allah(Subhanahu wa Ta’ala)) descends To the lowermost heaven and says; “Who is calling Me, so that I may answer him? Who is asking Me so that may I grant him? Who is seeking forgiveness from Me so that I may forgive him?” [Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith Qudsi]

Amr ibn Absah narrated that the Prophet said: ‘The closest any worshipper can be to His Lord is during the last part of the night, so if you can be amongst those who remember Allah at that time, then do so.’ [at-Tirmidhi, an-Nasa’i, al-Hakim – Sahih]

3. Attend taraweeh; By all means if your masjid has room for you to sit in a corner then go! I’m sure they do because all those mamas be bringing their kids and they’re just there running around so take advantage because I know if i stay at home there is no way I will do what I should be doing because 1. procastination 2.shaytan 3.laziness 4.blaming the period again 5. shaytan x1000 – it’s a non ending process so changing the atmosphere doing tasbih whilst listening to the imam lead the prayer or catching up on reading quran on your phone, we digging the bonuses AGAIN.

4. Keep the ramadan spirit; I think this is actually more important than it sounds, it’s ramadan it comes once a year for only a month. Staying in the mood of it all is mandatory okay, especially with our hormones going 180 on us we gotta keep it tamed feed those cravings. BAKE, and make some nice little treats and keep the i-n-s-t-a gram game going haha. No but seriously especially if you’re a sister, daughter and have not so many duties in the house getting up bright and making some cookies or brownies for iftaar whilst blasting surah baqara is quite literally the bomb diggity once you try it. Ramadan shouldn’t be all about food but it’s important to remain active and refrain from going to your comfort spot because well once you hit that comfort spot there’s no leaving it till you’re called to prepare tonights iftaar which means internet, instagram, facebook, movies, more movies, instagram and repeat that about ten times till you end up falling asleep and having a sweet nap. We all know the drill but lets keep it real those things will keep us far from what we should be nourishing ourselves on. So going out for a walk, baking, DIY and listening to quran -the perfect combo.

Today’s hadith I’d like to dedicate to this post is narrated by Abu Dhar:
– Allah’s Messenger said that Allah said: He who comes with a good deed, its reward will be ten like that or even more. And he who comes with vice, his reward will be only one like that, or I can forgive him. He who draws close to Me a hand’s span, I will draw close to him an arm’s length. And whoever draws near Me an arm’s length, I will draw near him a fathom’s length. And whoever comes to Me walking, I will go to him running. And whoever faces Me with sins nearly as great as the earth, I will meet him with forgiveness nearly as great as that, provided he does not worship something with me. (This Hadith is sound and reported by Muslim, Ibn Majah and Ahmad in his Musnad).  (Muslim)

We must remember and often we forget that the effort must come from us at all times, lets stop shaytaan from being one step ahead of us and let us be one step ahead and in front of the game.

Have a blessed day of fasting.

Mel x



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