09 Jul The blessings of Tahajjud
When we look into the sky at night time, what do we see? If it’s a clear sky, we will see many stars twinkling away into the distance. As the world is in its slumber, the stars shine brightly for those who wish to marvel at their sight. For those who wish to ponder over their Creator – the one who created such beauty, in that special part of the night, when all are sleeping, except a few who wish to have secret intimate discourses with their Creator. It’s a beautiful experience, one to be cherished, yet only experienced if one is awake at the correct time.
Imagine, like a star, if light was to emanate from the human each time he/she woke up in the middle of the night to observe the night vigil prayer. Would the world at that time be brightly illuminated from those observing qiyaamul layl? Or would there be only darkness, with a few flickers of illumination from the very few who want to make that effort to wake. Truly, that is the reality of the situation today.
The Best of Mankind (PBUH) was such that his feet would swell in his effort to observe tahajjud, despite the fact that he was in no need of that, being the being that he was. And yet, when asked why he exerts so much effort he said to his beloved wife Aa’ishah:
If that was the state of Rasoolullaah (PBUH), then we should cry tears from the heart when we consider our ownselves.
Allah says in the Qur’an when speaking about the muttaqeen.
These very people would spend their nights in the worship of Allah, and so are promised jannah for their efforts. When a child makes an extra effort to make the parent happy, the parent shows extra appreciation. Therefore, when the slave of Allah makes an extra effort to gain closeness to his Lord, how can it be that Allah will not give extra reward? Will not elevate his ranks above those who didn’t pay heed to extra voluntary acts of worship? Giving up sleep is not easy for majority, as it is the time when the body relaxes. But those who live in the love of Allah find that sacrificing their sleep is nothing compared to the sweetness they taste at tahajjud time.
"Our Lord, the Blessed, the Superior, comes every night down on the nearest Heaven to us when the last third of the night remains, saying: "Is there anyone to invoke Me, so that I may respond to invocation? Is there anyone to ask Me, so that I may grant him his request? Is there anyone seeking My forgiveness, so that I may forgive him?" (Bukhari)
Imagine, all the thoughts which trouble our souls and internal state can be taken away, by making those special du’as at that special time, after a few simple but special rakaats of voluntary prayer and some qira’at.
“The du’a made at the time of tahajjud is like an arrow which does not miss its target.” (Imam Ash-Shafi’i)
Why miss out on such a great opportunity? Within the darkness of the night, we will find our Lord waiting for us to turn to Him in humility, in order to shower more love and blessings over us than He already does.
Making that effort to get up at a difficult time for a sole purpose – to get closer to Allah, there is already a sense of achievement and so psychologically, we feel good. And when those feelings are felt, it leads to the desire to continue, and increase. And, so, after awaking, naturally we feel as though, I want to do more. Slowly yet surely, the sweetness comes, with continuation and increase.
The night can be a time when we spend it in the worst, in the thought that nobody is looking. Or it can be used in a beautiful manner, in the thought that, ‘I am being observed by the Most Loving, Ever Watchful’.
How will you spend your nights?
Noor Ul Islam Aalimah Department
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The Prophet (Pbuh) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small.