Ramadan Log DAY 9: Self-Discipline. Self-Discipline. Self-Discipline.

Remember last week I mentioned how one of my favorite K-pop groups released a new music video? Now another artist, who I like even more, is coming out with a new video next week. And another one of my favorite groups is releasing a new video is just a couple of days.

Sigh. Why couldn’t these people release music videos before Ramadan?! It’s been a year since any of these artists have come out with anything new, and now they decide to all release their new music during the month I’ve chosen to swear off music.

This is going to be a tough next couple of weeks. I can see Allah identifying my weakness and using it to test me. He knows that if I let myself abandon my vigilance for three minutes, I will be sucked right back into the world of virtual consumption. I have to stay true to my goals. This month is for me to become less attached. This month is for self-discipline. Self-discipline. Self-discipline. Self-discipline.

Not watching TV and videos, and not eating meals, has actually been giving me time to do a lot of things I normally push aside. I’ve been reading a lot more, not just the Muhammad book, but fictional books as well. I also have been doing a ton of writing. For some reason, I always have inspiration to write at the most inappropriate times, like when I’m in the middle of class or working on an important, time-sensitive assignment. Usually when I’m free, like on the weekends or during school breaks, I suddenly get intense writers block. Alhamdulillah, that has not been the case this month. I spent the majority of my day today both reading and writing.

Alhamdulillah, writing has been one of the best gifts God has given me. When I can’t seem to find something interesting to read, or I’m frustrated with the stories that I am currently reading, I just write my own stories. And that is satisfying enough for me.

Things are getting slightly confusing in Muhammad. The story itself is great. Muhammad (S) has started spreading the message of Islam to his community and has been gaining followers, as well as enemies. Where I get confused is in keeping track of all of the names and relationships. The society of the Quraysh back then was one in which everyone seemed to be related, through siblings or marriage. And so many people shared the same name, or went by multiple names. One of these days I need to find an extensive family tree of the Prophet (S). I am really interested in knowing all of the names and understanding the complex relationships, but when I’m fasting, my mind just can’t keep up.

I found two short quotes I would like to share today. The first is one of the reasons why so many people so readily accepted Islam. In addition to hearing the profound and poetic words of the Qur’an, “A parallel imperative cause for accepting the message was the Messenger himself, a man who was, they were certain, too full of truth to deceive and too full of wisdom to be self-deceived” (Lings 67). I really like this description of the Prophet Muhammad (S). It demonstrates one of the reasons why Muhammad was the perfect person to bring the message of Islam to humanity. He had such an impeccable reputation as an honest and noble man before becoming a Prophet, so when he did proclaim that he was a Messenger of God, the people who really knew him understood that he couldn’t be saying anything but the truth.

Upon seeing members of his own family and tribe disown him and ridicule him, Muhammad was given a revelation in response to his frustrations and disappointments, which brings me to my second quote for today: “Verily thou guidest not whom thou lovest, but God guideth whom He will.” Lings is actually quoting the Qur’an here, chapter 28, “Al-Qasas” or “The Narration”, verse 56. I imagine this was a word of comfort for the Prophet (S). His job was to spread the message; it is God’s job to guide people to accepting Islam.

I find this verse comforting in my own life as well. I have many friends who are not Muslim, and it does make me feel sad at times that they do not share the same religion as mine. But it is not my job to convert the people I meet. My job is simply to live life as the best example of a Muslim as I can be.

*IFTAR PICTURE OF THE DAY*

Baguette with Goat Cheese and Fudge Wafers for iftar

Baguette with Goat Cheese and Fudge Wafers for iftar

Shin Ramyun for dinner

Shin Ramyun for dinner (store-bought)

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