‘Muslim after Ramadan’
Alhamdulillah for being granted life to witness another Ramadan, to be able to offer Qiyaam & to witness Laylatul Qadr and all else to please Allah. May Allah accept the deeds of all Muslims and grant us all the hidayah to continue doing good and to avoid sin to the best of our ability.
Make Dua that your Deeds in Ramadan are accepted
Firstly, appreciate the blessing of Ramadan. Recognize that out of billions of people on Earth you firstly are Muslim; secondly you were able to fast and to obey Allah’s command of fasting in Ramadan!
These alone are incredibly huge blessings Allah has chosen you specifically to give. So think about the potential reward from that one month of intensive worship and really be grateful to Allah for giving you permission to enter the month, to fast in the month and to at least have a good go at increasing your worship in it. Recognizing these blessings will help you move forward with improved motivation and aspiration.
Pray that your deeds were accepted, the companions of the Prophet ﷺ would spend months after Ramadan asking Allah to accept their worship. This is probably because they truly understood the magnitude of the actions done in this great month and similarly we should reflect on our blessing of entering the month and also the fact that we increased our worship in it.
Evaluating our Ramadan
Wonder whether the fasting person continued after Ramadan to be as he was during Ramadan, or is he “like her who undoes the thread which she has spun, after it has become strong”[cf. al-Nahl 16:92]? Wonder whether the one who during Ramadan was fasting, reciting and reading Qur’an, giving and spending in charity, praying at night, making du’aa’, will he be like that after Ramadan, or will he follow another path, we mean the path of the Shaytaan, so that he commits sin and does things that anger the Most Gracious, Most Merciful?
If a Muslim continues to have the patience to do righteous deeds after Ramadan, this is a sign that his (fasting) has been accepted by his Lord, the Most Generous, the Bestower of blessings. If he fails to do righteous deeds after Ramadan, and follows the ways of the Shaytaan, this is a sign of humiliation, meanness, lowly status and being deprived of the help of Allah, as al-Hasan al-Basri said: “They were no longer of any significance to Allah, so they committed sin. If they had mattered to Him, He would have protected them.” When a person becomes insignificant to Allah, Allah will no longer honour him.
The scholars (may Allaah have mercy on them) said:
Among the signs of acceptance (of good deeds) is that Allaah causes one hasanah (good deed) to be followed by another, for the hasanah says, “My sister, my sister!” And the sayi’ah (evil deed) also says, “My sister, my sister!” –we seek refuge with Allaah. If Allaah has accepted a person’s Ramadan, and he has benefited from this period of (spiritual) training and has remained steadfast in obeying Allah, then he has joined the caravan of those who have remained steadfast and responded to Allah. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Verily, those who say: ‘Our Lord is Allaah (Alone),’ and then they stand firm, on them the angels will descend (at the time of their death) (saying): ‘Fear not, nor grieve! But receive the glad tidings of Paradise which you have been promised!
We have been your friends in the life of this world and are (so) in the Hereafter. Therein you shall have (all) that your inner selves desire, and therein you shall have (all) for which you ask” [Fussilat 41:30-31]
The believer should join the caravan of those who stand firm and should board the ship of salvation from the time when he reaches the earliest age of discretion until he draws his last breath.
The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said,
“A believer never satisfies doing good until he reaches Jannah.” [At- Tirmidhi]
“The most beloved of deeds to Allah are those that are most consistent, even if it is small.” (Bukhari).
Hence when a man came to the Prophet ﷺ and said, “Advise me,” he said, “Say, ‘I believe in Allaah,’ and remain steadfast.” (Agreed upon).
The one who is steadfast in obeying Allaah is the one whose du’aa’ will be answered, the du’aa’ which he repeats more than twenty-five times each day, “Guide us to the Straight Way” [al-Faatihah 1:6 – interpretation of the meaning], which we say in al-Faatihah. Why is it that we say and believe strongly that if we remain steadfast Allaah will forgive us, but we are too lazy to apply that in practical terms? We should fear Allaah and apply this in deed and thought and word. We should strive in the way of “ihdinaa al-siraat al-mustaqeem(Guide us to the Straight Way)”, and we should travel the route of “iyaakana’buduwaiyyaakanasta’een(You (Alone) we worship, and You (Alone) we ask for help (for each and everything))” [al-Faatihah 1:5 – interpretation of the meaning], in the shade of “ihdinaa al-siraat al-mustaqeem(Guide us to the Straight Way)”, following the route that will lead us to Paradise the width of the heavens and the earth, whose key is Laailaaha ill-Allaah. I ask Allaah to grant us and you a good end.
What type are you?
After the end of Ramadan, the people are divided into various types, two of the most prominent of which we will describe here.
The first type are those whom you see in Ramadan striving hard in worship. You never see them but they are prostrating or standing in prayer, or reading Qur’aan, or weeping, so much that they remind you of some of the worshippers among the salaf, and you even feel compassion for them because of the intensity of their efforts and striving. Yet hardly has the month ended, before they go back to negligence and committing sin, as if they were prisoners of that worship, so they turn their attention to their desires and become negligent and commit sins which they think will take away their distress and grief. But these poor people forget that sin is the cause of doom, because sins are like war wounds, one of which may turn out to be fatal. How often has sin prevented a person from saying Laailaaha ill-Allaah when in the throes of death.
After spending this entire month with faith, (reading) Qur’aan and other acts of worship, these people then backslide, LaahawlawalaaquwwataillaBillaah(there is no power and no strength except with Allaah). These are the occasional worshippers who only acknowledge Allaah on certain occasions or at times of calamity and distress, then after that there is no more obedience or worship. What a bad habit that is.
“The worshipper prayed for something that he wanted, and when the matter was done, he neither prayed nor fasted.” [Arabic poetry]
I wonder what is the point of worshipping for a whole month, if that is going to be followed by a return to dishonourable ways?
The second type are those who feel distressed at the departure of Ramadan, because they have tasted the sweetness of being safe from sin, and the bitterness of patience became insignificant to them, because they came to realize the true nature of their weakness and need for their Master (Allaah) and their need to obey Him. They fasted in a true sense and stood in prayer at night out of love, so when they bade farewell to Ramadan, their tears flowed and their hearts were broken. Those among them who were burdened with sin hoped to be freed from sin and ransomed from Hell, and to join the caravan of those who are accepted. Ask yourself, my brother/sister, which of the two groups do you belong to?
By Allaah, are they the same? Praise be to Allaah, but most of them do not know. The mufassireen said, commenting on the aayah (interpretation of the meaning):
“Say (O Muhammad to mankind): ‘Each one does according to Shakilatihi (i.e. his way or his religion or his intentions)…” [al-Israa’ 17:84] – every person acts according to his way or the character that he is used to. This is condemnation for the kaafir and praise for the believer.
You should know that the dearest of deeds to Allaah are those that are continuous, even if they are little. The Messenger ﷺ said: “O people, you must do whatever you can of good deeds, for Allaah does not get tired until you get tired. The most beloved of deeds to Allaah are those which are continuous, even if they are little. The family of Muhammad ﷺ, when they did something, they would persist in doing it.” Narrated by Muslim.
When the Prophet ﷺ was asked about which deeds are most beloved to Allaah, he said, “Those which are continuous, even if they are little.”
‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) was asked about what the Messenger of Allaahﷺ did and whether he used to do certain things on particular days. She said, “No, his good deeds were continuous. Who among you could do what the Messenger of Allaahﷺ used to do?”
The acts of worship prescribed in Islam are based on certain conditions which must be fulfilled, like remembrance of Allaah, Hajj and ‘Umrah and their naafil actions, enjoining what is good and forbidding what is evil, seeking knowledge, and other good deeds.
Dealing with Ramadan Blues
Eid-ul-Fitr was over a couple weeks ago, leaving many of us wistful for Ramadan.
While there may be no study available about post-Ramadan blues, based on anecdotal evidence, the feeling is real. It’s not unlike the post-holiday sadness some who live abroad and go back home for holidays feel, the letdown after returning to the regular day to day life.
This is why we should not let the feelings fester. Rather, this is an ideal time to set goals and try to maintain the excellent habits we picked up in the blessed month.
Carrying over our good habits from Ramadan will help ease that sadness of missing the blessed month and the excitement and happiness it brings.
I want you to imagine.
An athlete has been training for many, many months to get into a competition and to take the number one position with all the medals, prize money and rewards that come with it.
They train very hard day and night and they go over every scenario so they will be fully prepared for this major competition. They are completely ready and prepared and the competition is about to begin.
The strange thing is, once they enter the competition they suddenly give up. Their competitors are around them, sweating, working hard to win as they just put minimum effort in the event.
Well this is what many of us do when it comes to the training course we do in Ramadan and the real-life competition in the rest of the year. This is what many people go through every single year. They get hyped in Ramadan, they enjoy a great month of different types of worship only to come to a complete stop at the end of the month after celebrating Eid.
Now is the time to make use of all the practice and hard work you did during Ramadan, pray to Allah to be able to fight your nafs and the shaitaan, to be able to continue doing good and to be able to permanently abandon the sins that we had let go off during Ramadan, o brothers and sisters strive to worship continuously according to your capability, may Allah make it easy for all of us and accept it from us.
May Allaah bless our Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and his family and companions, and grant them peace.
In the upcoming classes we will InShaAllah study about the acts/deeds that we would implement in Ramadan, along with their virtues and rewards when done round the year.