Between Dusk and Dawn…

Some *scribble* *scribble* by Ameera

Lecture Notes – “Towards An Outstanding Ramadan” by Muhammad Al Shareef

This talk was given last year and was highly acclaimed and InshAllah, this year on August 17th, Muhammad Al Shareef is presenting another highly anticipated talk live, titled “The Fasting and the Furious”. I got a chance to watch/listen to “Towards An Outstanding Ramadan” on Youtube today and decided to share some notes I took down as I listened. Here we go:

  • When Allah(swt) gives the command to fast, the ayah begins with “O you who believe…” – this is always important to note, as either a) some good will be highlighted for you to do, or b) you will be warned about some harm that may come to you for a certain act.
  • Various religions today have some remnant of fasting, modified from the original fast but only Islam has the original method of fasting preserved through centuries. SubhanAllah!
  • What is your goal for Ramadan? It is illogical not to have a goal – like a traveller who would turn up at the airport without knowing the destination he wanted to travel to!
  • Imagine Ramadan as a “marathon”. There are some who are just spectators at the start and finish lines (likened to those who just worship at the start and end of Ramadan). In the middle are the participants who’re putting in all the effort to win the race, from the start to the finish, likened to those who do Ibadah throughout, consistently.
  • Ramadan is the month of feeding people – giving charity, cooking food for the needy. It is not about about eating more ourselves or attending dinner parties where we stuff ourselves with food.
  • We have lots of excuses for not being regular in prayers or not waking for Fajr or being unable to control anger throughout the year. In Ramadan, we are able to do many of these things – there is no substance in “excuses” then – we are only lying to our ownselves.
  • Ramadan is a time to build up Taqwa. There are only two instances in Islam where Halal things are temporarily denied for us – in the Hajj (eg: cutting hair) and during Ramadan (eg: not having food while fasting) – why? It is to…
    – recognize the blessings we have and
    – to train the body to avoid what is Haram
    This is training for after Ramadan!
  • The Imam of a masjid is the person to look to – he leads the prayers throughout the day, is not able to attend iftaar parties that are far away as he has to be in the masjid. What about the people who come to the masjid? Very easily, they cite an iftaar party far away from the masjid as the excuse for missing Taraweeh.
  • The Imam cannot eat much at Iftaar as he has to lead Maghrib and Isha, then Taraweeh while the people stuff themselves with food and then are late for Taraweeh.
  • We have forgotten past Ramadan that we spent but is there any time that we particularly remember? Usually, it has something to do with offering Taraweeh regularly and with concentration – it makes Ramadan unforgettable!
  • Ramadan makes us disciplined – why not continue after Ramadan?
  • Make your intention now – do not be like the traveller who shows up at the airport and does not know his destination.
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4 responses to “Lecture Notes – “Towards An Outstanding Ramadan” by Muhammad Al Shareef

  1. Islam Blog August 4, 2009 at 12:23 pm

    Jazakallah for sharing!

    I’m in a really low Eeman phase right now and looking forward to this Ramadhan for a boost.

  2. BrownS August 4, 2009 at 7:34 pm

    Jazakillahu khair for your notes as well as the pointer to the video lecture. I’m really looking forward to this year’s lecture on not losing steam in the middle 10 days. That is going to be really useful inshaAllah.

  3. mystrugglewithin August 6, 2009 at 10:30 am

    Hey! that’s my way of doing it. 😀 [just kidding]

    You know, I am thinking, there should be a bunch of people who listen to these lectures frequently, who should compile notes like these.. and highlight the very important gems out of them. It’s literally painstaking to seek an audio lecture looking for the segment that we want someone else to listen to.. esp. in case of shaykh’s like Anwar Awlaki! Anyways, Allah SWT willing, soon someday, I’ll do a website for this inshallah!

    Jak, keep it up!

  4. Ameera August 6, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    Islam blog: I agree with you, it’s the same case with me so I’m especially looking forward to Ramadan. 🙂

    BrownS: That has always been a problem with me – going off track after the initial “Iman rush” (I love that term). I’m really hoping this year will be the best Ramadan of my life so far InshAllah!

    Mystrugglewithin: That’s a great idea. I do not know to what extent I could contribute but you can use my “lecture notes” freely. I could do perhaps a video a week (every Sunday) for whatever initiative you have in mind. You can email me your ideas, maybe we could work something out InshAllah.

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