Friday, August 04, 2006


This will apparently be my 49th post... simply, I'm trying to keep myself awake for another 20 minutes before my shift is over. I'm thankful I got a nap this afternoon, but hopeful that I can sleep more before getting back up again... did anyone notice that fajr is getting later!? Seriously. That should make it easier, so inshaAllah I can start making it back to the masjid, maybe even staying up after the prayer to read Qur'an before going to work. I so want to do that.

For people who don't pray fajr in the masjid... you don't know what you're missing. There is an easy sense of calm, relaxation, and a tremendous amount of love for Allah. No, there aren't many people there... perhaps the fewest of any prayer, even, though I've never been to any day prayers (save 'asr once) to see if people are able to attend them despite work... But each and every man (and woman) had to make a sincere effort to be there. They weren't dropping off or picking up their kids, they weren't on their way home, they weren't eating dinner at a restaraunt nearby... they just got up, make wudhu, and came to pray. Why do people do that, except for love of Allah?

Maybe it seems so calm because everyone is half asleep... but the sense of satisfaction after praying fajr in congregation is something really special to me. There aren't any children screaming, no phones going off during the prayer, nobody playing basketball in the gym: the world is asleep. But Allah is listening.

I in fact have a more difficult time falling to sleep when I've prayed at the masjid than at home. Granted, I've been up for a longer time, and certainly spent more time praying by taking that trip, but when I arrive at home, I do tend to want to stay awake, and sometimes even wish the entire day could be spent in worship.

Prayer, namely salat, has a way of keeping us in touch with reality. When we get up for salat, we wash first... hands, face, arms, feet... touching the water which wakes us up. It's hard to be in a dream while making contact with the world like that. Then we take the trip... 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 30 minutes... walking, riding, driving to the masjid, in the dark. Every step is a reward. Then, we start to focus... 2 cycles of prayer for the masjid. Two more as a sunnah. And then we pray in congregation, then we can hear the beautiful recitation of the Qur'an. We prostrate on all seven limbs, touching our faces to the ground, a reminder to be humble.

And when we leave the masjid, it's not dark anymore... the sun starting to come up. Maybe by the time we are home we can even see it rise, and witness the reality of the breaking of day. We are in this world, and salat reminds us of it...

It's 3:30am almost on a Jumma'ah day, a Friday. I hope anyone reading this makes it to jumma'ah, and also makes it or made it to fajr at the masjid--remind yourself of this world, that we are in this world, but not striving for this world, but rather, for the Hereafter.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Subhanallah Amy, that was beautiful. May Allah give you, me and all muslims the ability to pray Fajr every day in the masjid, Ameen, Ameen, Ameen.