By Meriem Cherif
As we wrap up the first week of Ramadan, you may be feeling one of many emotions: peace, exhaustion, excitement for the rest of the month, or even defeat from the challenge of the last few days. No matter which you resonate with the most, it never hurts to reflect on how your Ramadan has been going. As you look optimistically toward the upcoming weeks, we wanted to highlight an important aspect of this holy time: mindfulness.
I sat down with Osama Abdelrahman a few days ago for a Bamrec Fireside Chat about Ramadan. From talking about mental sharpness to hearing about his experiences celebrating the holy month in multiple different countries, there was no shortage of wisdom during the twenty-minute discussion. But one specific portion of our conversation especially piqued my interest, representing something many of us think about during Ramadan.
In this time, the deeds of those around us are extra apparent; whether it is on social media or through conversations with family members, it is very easy to over-scrutinize your personal journey during Ramadan. You hear about how Muslims spend the entire night awake making dua, pore over the Quran for hours upon hours, and devote their time to giving charity in their local community. Mashallah, these actions are commendable, but might leave you feeling inadequate, and like you aren’t doing enough. It is known that comparison is the thief of joy, and many of us struggle with our Ramadan because we size up our own lives with that of others.
During my discussion with Osama, he touched upon this relatable experience that Muslims go through, and gave a straight-forward response: “It is only between you and Allah SWT, and you don’t have to do anything for anyone else.” Indeed, we are all at different points in our spiritual journey, and only fully understand our own. For many who may feel lost on where to begin, Osama explained to “start with the obligations, and then worry about the extra; most important is how you treat people.”
With so much time left in this month, harness the opportunity to better your iman, at your own pace! Inshallah the rest of your Ramadan is blissful, and check our Fireside Chatwith Osama for more tips and advice!