It’s been a while. A month and a day to be precise. But, alhamdulillah. I think I needed a bit of time in between to be able to come back and write about the things I care about without feeling like I’m writing for the sake of it. I needed to reassess my intentions and clear my head up, especially since we entered the month of Ramaḍān in between. Speaking of, I hope the month has been treating you all well and you’ve all been able to utilise it to refine your spiritual health and understand all the ways in which you can keep working towards this even after Ramaḍān passes us by. If you haven’t, don’t despair. It happens. We always think we have more time than we actually do. But, it doesn’t mean you can’t start now! Dust off that Qur’ān, roll out the prayer mat, and reconnect with your Lord.
I came into this Ramaḍān far better prepared than I’ve ever done before, and so I wanted to give myself one set goal that I work towards daily throughout the month, as well as be able to carry it forward into the rest of my life. This goal was (is): understanding my relationship with Allāh ﷻ and working towards improving it. Now, I’d set the goal and had convinced myself that I could very simply do this through du’ā after each prayer, but the truth is, I’ve been doing that for a good part of the twenty-something years I’ve lived and we’re still here, struggling to understand how one (appropriately) communicates with a Being who doesn’t respond in the conventional way that we’re accustomed to – think of it like this, we tend to think someone isn’t listening if they don’t immediately respond, right? But, I’ve been trying really hard to unlearn this. To understand that Allāh ﷻ doesn’t give you what you want when you want it, but rather what you need in its due time, whether that’s in the next minute or the next 10 years.
So, this Ramaḍān, while my du’ās are in their rightful place, I have also taken up letter writing to Allāh ﷻ as a means of communication. Throughout my life, I’ve been known to be able to express my thoughts in writing far better than when I’m speaking, and so when I came across a letter on Instagram to Allāh ﷻ, I knew this was definitely the route I wanted to take. And so, I begun. In times of need, in times of joy, in times of turmoil, and those of contentment, I write. The good folks at Siblings of Ilm explain these letters so much better than I ever could:
We are fast to write to our beloved ones, we can write lengthy messages for their birthdays, on special occasions, we can write lengthy good morning messages for them to see when they awake or good night messages filled with emotions.
But ask yourself, when did you last write to Allāh? Yes, Allāh knows what is in your heart but so does your beloved. Why the need to express it? Because you know it will please them greatly.
Write a letter to Allāh, tell Allāh about your problems, let tears drop on the letter, let it become soaked with emotions.
Write to Allah.
I will be completely honest with you, it was awkward at first. I couldn’t quite grasp the concept of writing to a Being who already knew what was in my heart and didn’t really need these measly words from me, but as I go on, I realise just how much I love it. Being able to write out your feelings and thoughts in a place where you know they’re being listened to feels like a physical weight off your shoulders. But most of all, turning it down a notch with all the formality when it comes to your relationship with Allāh ﷻ feels revolutionary for the soul. You’re no longer struggling to string together the perfect du’ā, or speak in a way that feels appropriate. There’s no longer a facade that you feel you have to keep up in order to be accepted by your Lord; it’s a refreshing realisation that you can come exactly as you are.
And my friends, I stand here today, exactly as I am, a humble servant in the eyes of Allāh ﷻ, and I thank Him for allowing me to understand that I am a work in progress with His Light guiding me the rest of the way.