‘While the Friday of any week is a source of blessings, mercy, forgiveness and salvation for the Believers, the Last Friday of Ramadan popularly known as ‘Jummat’al-Wida’, is light upon light and felicitation of the Noble Qur’an. It is the symbol of splendour, dignity and greatness for the Believers. It is a supreme expression of awe and majesty. On this day people walk towards the Central Mosque proclaiming the Glory and Praise of Almighty Allah aloud. On the way they are surrounded by the Angels and from the boundary of the Ka’abah pours in joyous torrents of mercy and forgiveness.
Without any shadow of a doubt the Last Friday of Ramadan is the day for the acceptance of du’as. Thus it is absolutely important that on this great day sincere prayers should be offered for the success, well-being and victory of the Muslim Ummah.’
Several sayings of the Prophet SallAllahu alaihi wasallam encourage recitation of the Qur’an during Ramadhan. “Whoever recites an ayah (verse) from the Qur’an (in this month) will receive a reward equal to the one received by a person who recites the entire Qur’an in other months.” I read this amazing Hadith in Arab News. However there was no reference, and Allah Almighty knows best. So Insha’Allah these remaining moments of this Ramadhan are spent with extra recitation, Ameen.
Insha’Allah tomorrow is the Qur’an Khatm in Haramain. It is anticipated that there will be record crowds attending Makkah and Madinah.
This Mubarak City of Light has become even more deeply emotional as the moon fades, preparing for a new rebirth, and the end of the most blessed month. The first glance towards the Green Dome as one enters the courtyard, joining the thousands literally pouring in from every direction, promotes a spontaneous flood of tears. An extraordinary luminosity hovers as far as the eye can see. An effulgence of peace and tranquility binding the heterogeneous million or more pilgrims into one united Ummah, the best of Ummah’s, the Ummah of our noble Nabi SallAllahu alaihi wasallam. It is as if our Beloved SallAllahu alaihi wasallam’s presence is the most intimate during these days. SubhanAllah, such serenity almost explodes the heart!
The traffic in and around Haram needs to be seen to be believed. Vehicles are taking advantage of the several huge areas where all the recent demolition has left open dusty ground ideal for car parking. Conditions will peak for the Khatm and then Eid. Walking to Haram this evening one sees the appearance of the hundreds of rice stalls which will line the roads and pathways until Eid. These stalls are fascinating as they resemble bunkers, the brown Hessian bags of rice stacked around, what mainly seems to be young children and the youth selling them. There seems to be a pride in how creative and artistic the bags can be arranged, and the closer the time comes to Eid, with the bags disappearing, the stacks continue to be redesigned. A work in progress, the boys transforming the shape of the stacks as cars stop and load up with their purchases. The smaller bags are 2.5 kilos, ranging up to 30 kilos, with purchase according to the amount one needs to pay for Zakat. I like the way the traditional manner of paying is maintained in the Kingdom. The amount of Zakat-al-Fitr is half of a Saa’ of wheat or one Saa’ of dates, barley or fig, with the option of giving the equivalent in money.
Zakat-al-Fitr is be Waajib, compulsory, the Prophet SallAllahu alaihi wasallam said: ‘’The fast of Ramadan remains suspended between the earth and the sky and it is only Sadaqah al-Fitr that takes it up.’’
Usually after 8 Rakats of Taraweeh there is an exodus of many, then after ten another exodus, leaving gaps in the Saf. It would be impossible to keep filling them. The other observation is the number who remains standing for the full 20 Rakats. So what begins as saf upon saf of ladies standing shoulder to shoulder gradually becomes a totally different dynamic! On my left this evening was a very old Pakistani lady. I felt I was next to a skeleton covered in shiny leather! She was so thin, and yet spent most of the time standing for her prayer. We got “talking” at the end of Taraweeh. She was here with the daughter, who sat for the entire time! The little I could comprehend of our sharing was that they were from a remote village in the north of Pakistan, “DURR”….Bohot DURR, they kept telling me. SubhanAllah, the wily stamina of many of the older ladies from villages around the world put the younger generation to shame. Once they knew I was living in Madinah they asked if we could marry our respective BACHA so they could be here! May Allah Ta’ala bring all pious Mu’minoon to this Glowing Place. This dear old lady was crying as she held my hands and mentioning the name and indicating the direction of Rasulullah SallAllahu alahi wasallam. Such intense love for the Prophet SallAllahu alaihi wasallam expressed in a poignant humble way. SubhanAllah over and over and over again!
What stories her gnarled bony hands, and her deeply etched wrinkled face could tell. The millions concentrated around Haramain during these days all have a story, life times melting into one for the One. Details of millions of journeys melting into one for the One. When one steps out to be on the Path of Allah, answering His call to visit the House and the Adobe, Allah Ta’ala instructs every manifestation of His creation to make Istighfar for the traveler to Him and to His Habib SallAllahu alaihi wasallam. How many particles of air have they passed, how many ants in the ground, how many creatures in the oceans have they flown over, birds in the air, leaves on trees, grains of sand, how many how many? The immensity of this Deen is beyond our feeble comprehension. And now sitting on a marble slab, covering the dust of what would have been the outskirts of the Prophet SallAllahu alaihi wasallam’s City, this small space will bear witness that we met, shared, bonded, and prostrated for a few moments in a time space also beyond our comprehension, as sisters, as tiny specks of this favoured, blessed Ummah. The presence of Angelic Hosts seemed as close as this dear sisters bony hands, their ethereal soft caress embracing our human earthliness. I semed to float homeward as if having worshipped for more than a thousand months! SubhanAllah over and over and over again and again!
Another scene which grabbed my heart was a small boy, maybe 6 or 7 years old leading his old grandmother through the crowds. She was completely hunched over, needing to stop every few steps, grabbing his tiny hand for support and checking the orientation of where they had come from. He did not show any signs of impatience or annoyance, caringly explaining to her what he perceived to be the best direction to take. Trust, submission to the trustee, such a profound insight Allah Ta’ala, the Ultimate and Faithful Trustee, Al-Wakeel, bestowed on the eyes of my heart by turning my attention to this scene.
May Allah Ta’ala bless us all, old and young, rich and poor, tall and short, and all other variations He has created, and bring love between us for His sake. Ameen.
All good is from Allah Ta’ala whereas mistakes are from this humble speck. May Allah Ta’ala Bless all readers, bringing you all closer to Him and His Rasul SallAllahu alaihi wasallam. Ameen.