Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Happy New Year!

Today is the first day of the year 1427 Hijrah, also known as [I]Maal Hijrah[/I] or the Islamic New Year.
It is not as widely or jubilantly celebrated by the masses as the Gregorian or Chinese New Year, but it is observed by most muslims. Actually I am quite suprised that even the S@udi government did not observe this day as a public holiday, when Malaysia does.
Individually, muslims can choose to fast and/or recite special prayers for the new year, basically asking Allah to continue blessing our lives and accepting our good deeds.
'Hijrah' literally means 'move', because on this day 1427 years ago (based on the Islamic calendar which calculates months by the moon) , was when Allah instructed the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to move from Makkah to Madinah. It was a necessary move to escape persecution. So basically, it was a move for the better.
So every Islamic new year, muslims are supposed to reflect on whether they have made moves (physically or spritually) towards the better.

Looking back on the past year, I think I can say I have made several moves. Physically, I had moved to another country. I had moved from being a mother of 3 to soon to be a mother of 4. I had moved from being a technical worker to a housemaker.
Spiritually, I had started concentrating on developing my family's emotional and spiritual well-being (since I don't have to worry about work anymore). I had started taking tajweed classes (lessons on how to recite the Quran in the way Allah had meant it to be recited). I am reading more and learning more from these reads.
I won't go into details, but I guess some of these moves are for the better. Though I must say there are some parts of my life that I wish I could move forward with (my state of [I]iman[/I], for instance), and some that I felt had moved backwards instead of forwards (my health and weight!! I really need to exercise more.. maybe after I give birth. And all this free time to cook does not help!).

I hope that this new year will help me be even a better person and a better muslim, and along the way I hope to be able to help make my husband and kids better persons and better muslims as well. I want to make full use of all the free time that I have blessed with due to to the move I made in the previous year.

Which reminds me of a hadith that I have heard many-many times, but was only reminded of its significance when I heard it again last night. Roughly translated, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) once said:

"There are 2 of Allah's gifts ([I]nikmahs[/I]) that humans are often fooled with, the time of health and the time of leisure".

Which basically says that we are often deceived that our health and leisure time is granted, that it is not a gift from Allah, that it will never be taken away from us. Therefore we postpone doing things that we could've done when we were healthy and when we have the time, because we think that we will always have 'tomorrow' to do it. We forget that we might get sick, or we might get busy, and that we have missed the opportunity to do something good or even great for ourselves.
or in short, he is saying "Just Do It!"

heh heh.. and I thought the Nike people came up with that idea..

Happy New Year everyone!


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