The last few days, as I mentioned in my last post, have been pretty awful. They are getting better, alhamdulillah... and alhamdulillah. The best part of every day though is the salaat. Especially dhuhr and asr, for some reason, because it really causes an interruption in whatever I'm doing. When I have to take a break from everything and just remember Allah, it is so powerful to let all my worries and concerns come out. In one sense I am going to my Lord, but in another, He is calling me to Him. It's almost like He is checking in on me at each of these times--even though He is All-Aware, and a Witness over everything.
Last week, on a Catholic forum I sometimes visit, some posters were criticizing the fact that Muslims must pray five times a day. First, they didn't think it was right or appropriate to have to stop work during the day to remember God. Then they said that they (Catholics) prayed more during the day than Muslims do and that they can do it without "bothering" anyone else. Praying when they get up, before their meals, and a few other times--I can't remember what all they mentioned. For a Muslim to hear something like that, it's almost a little laughable.
Because Muslims "pray" at all these times too, and more. It's what we call supplication though, or du'a, and not the salaat which is the 5 daily prayers. Because the 5 daily prayers are a ritual in addition to all that--and many people pray even more than those 5 ritual prayers in a day. It's kind of like the bare minimum, that a person stops his day to pray at these times.
And why during stated times? Why not just, whenever? This is such a blessing I think we Muslims all too often overlook. Because it's precisely when we are busy doing worldly matters that we need to be reminded of Allah. That we need Him to check on us. And then the remembrance of Allah becomes part of our daily routine.
So when the prayer time comes and the adhaan makes, we really should hurry to go pray, to remember Allah. It's the most important meeting of our lives, five times a day--maintenance for our bodies and our souls, a chance to focus on our purpose, to let go of our worldly concerns and place our tiny problems before Allah Almighty, Lord of the Worlds. And He is listening to us!
What a blessing we have, how merciful is our Lord.