Ramadan Mubarak to you all! May the month be filled with lots of blessings for you all, inshAllah.
This Ramadan, we’re going to be continuing our ‘Lessons from the Quran’ series, which will focus on Surah Al-Baqarah. So join us every week on The Muslim Girl to learn about all the amazing things that Allah has told us in this surah, which covers so many diverse topics.
Before we welcome Ramadan, I want us to learn a bit from ayah no. 185 of Surah Al-Baqarah. Allah swt begins by saying that Ramadan is the month in which the Qur’an was sent down. Now an extremely long time ago there was a man who made du’a to Allah while building Ka’aba with his son. He asked Allah to grant a messenger from among them who will recite His ayaats. Allah answered this prayer of Prophet Ibrahim (as) fourteen hundred years ago in the month of Ramadan. This is the month in which we as an Ummah were born. And it’s no ordinary month because in it was revealed a Book which changed the course of the entire world.
Moving on, Allah tells us three things about the Qur’an:
- He says it’s guidance for humanity. When do we need a guide? When we feel lost. There comes a point in life when we’re messed up in the worst possible manner. If not that, then we are sad beyond reasons. One way or another, we all carry a heavy heart sometimes. Qur’an helps us to lighten our hearts by giving us personal counsel and expert advice. Test it. Sit with the Qur’an in times of distress. It’ll seem that the ayah you just read was written especially for you.
- Then He says that Qur’an offers clear proofs within guidance. Prophets (as) before Rasool Allah (saw) had a message for the ears to hear and miracles for the eyes to witness. However, the Qur’an is both. It’s a message and a miracle. In it are things that will blow our mind away and leave us in extreme appreciation. But for that there’s a need to engage with this Book. And it won’t happen effortlessly.
- Finally He calls it an ultimate separation between right and wrong. And why does He mention this in the last? Because when we come to Qur’an for guidance and invest our time in it in order to understand it then no doubt we’ll have all the reasons to be convinced by its message. We’ll know what’s good and what’s not. And thus we are going to live the right way shown by Allah through His words.
After this Allah says that whoever gets to witness this month then they should fast. I want to put some light upon the word witness. Witness is done through the eyes and of miracles. So the ayah tells us that Ramadan is a miracle and when we witness it we are suppose to fill with such awe that we forget the most important things in our life: eating and drinking. Why’s that? We read and understand the Qur’an so much in Ramadan that the timeless miracles of it leave us amazed. In short, the spirit of Ramadan, which is the Qur’an, rattles us to the point that the weight of it humbles us and we fast.
Afterwards Allah continues the ayah and says that if anyone is ill or on journey then the fasts missed should be completed in the later days. Now there’s no running away from fasting. No matter how high the temperature is in our home town, we still have to enroll in the institution of fasting. Surprisingly the next sentence is translated as: Allah wants ease for you and doesn’t want difficulty for you. One can ponder for as long as possible at how fasting and then making up for it, no matter what, can be easy especially when one lives in a hot region. The verse is mostly translated like that but is in fact incorrect. The correct one is: Allah wants ease because of you and doesn’t want difficulty because of you. Rasool Allah (saw) used to tell his students, who were sent as ambassadors of Islam to other people, go make ease and don’t make difficulty. Just like those ambassadors we also have a job of delivering the message of Islam to all of humanity. And for sure this massive task requires a rigorous training; Allah gave us Ramadan for that training purpose. The seriousness of this business is explained when Allah says, shortly, that we must complete the total count of fasting. Because there’s a big work ahead and for that we need to fully graduate from the training session.
And when we do that Allah tells us to declare His greatness based on how He guided us so that we may become grateful. Throughout Ramadan our desires are going to be lower against the command of Allah. Now when the fasting is complete and Ramadan passes, we will be ready to declare Allah greater in everything we do. Because the Ramadan training session might make our heart so strong that fighting the Nafs for the rest of the year will seem like a piece of cake. And when Allah makes this easy for us shouldn’t we thank Him? We should. That’s why we see the ending as: so that you may be grateful to Him.
Aren’t the words of Allah beautiful? Let’s internalize them this month In sha Allah. Ramadan Mubarak!