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i want the moon

there you are, moon

i see you with my own eyes

filling the dark with light

“and by the moon as it follows it” (91.2)

“by the moon when it becomes full” (84.18)

“and has made the moon a light therein” (71.16)

you are surely one of the great signs of God

and by you we determine two pillars of worship

My Lord!

I have made pilgrimage to Your House in Makkah.

“The first House [of worship] to be established for people was the one at Mecca. It is a blessed place; a source of guidance for all people” (3.96)

I had no authority here on Earth to determine the time of the Hajj. Others who control Makkah determine when the Hajj began, and so I went to fulfill my obligation and left aside that which I had no control over. But You placed the moon in the sky to determine its beginning!

“They ask you [Prophet] about crescent moons. Say, ‘They show the times appointed for people, and for the pilgrimage.’” (2.189)

Please accept from me my worship! I am ignorant and sinful, but You are the Most Merciful of those who show mercy! I tried my best to fulfill my obligation – please accept, my Lord!

And I fast during the month of Ramadan! And it is the moon that determined its beginning.

“…So those of you who witness the month must fast in it….” (2.185)

My Lord!

I am so sick of the words of human beings, even my own. I wish I did not have to write this. But I find no other vehicle to express myself other than these words. But it is not words that I want. It is what the words point to.

I want the moon.

How many conferences of human beings are filled with words about the moon?! How much contention and wrangling in human hearts is manifested in speech about that which You have created beautiful and pristine?!

“We gave them clear proof in matters [of religion]. They differed among themselves out of mutual rivalry, only after knowledge came to them: on the Day of Resurrection your Lord will judge between them regarding their differences.” (45.17)

My Lord!

No one controls the moon but You. Those with the most billions to spend cannot stop its phases. Someone who has published 200 books cannot make it rise in the horizons other than where You have decreed it to be.

I want the moon.

I want the sign in the heaven that speaks to me with the pure voice of Your Oneness. Far away from the prattle of nervous minds and bookish tendencies.

Yes, my Lord, the moon is not You. It is created.

“And when he saw the moon rising he said, ‘This is my Lord,’ but when it too set, he said, ‘If my Lord does not guide me, I shall be one of those who go astray.’” (6.77)

But it rises high above this world, where our folly has yet to touch, reminding us to fast for You in the month of Ramadan, and to travel to Makkah for You in the month of Dhu’l-Hijja.

I am a Muslim, my Lord, because I believe in You, and want the way back to You.

“This is a reminder. Let whoever wishes, take the way to his Lord.” (76.29)

I am searching for those things that are beyond doubt to lead me on that way, my Lord.

Muhammad looked to the same moon.

‘Ali looked to the same moon.

Husayn looked to the same moon.

And that gives comfort to my broken heart.

اللهم صل على محمد و آل محمد

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dear son

dear son

peace be upon you

first off

i want you to know with certainty

that you were an answer to a prayer

made before you were ever conceived

secondly

i want you to know that i am not always being truthful

because in ways that i act

and will continue to act

in your presence

i am making the claim that i am good and that i know

but the real truth is that

whatever good you may perceive

is because God has veiled from you my faults

and whatever i know

is because God granted me a tiny drop

from the shoreless ocean of Knowledge

there is nothing i can actually offer you

if i protect you from harm

it is because God is the Protector

if i give you something that benefits you

it is because God is the Benefactor

for when i face God

the invocation attributed to Imam ‘Ali

expresses everything i have ever learned

إِلٰهِي إِنْ كَانَ صَغُرَ فِي جَنْبِ طَاعَتِكَ عَمَلِي
فَقَدْ كَبُرَ فِي جَنْبِ رَجَائِكَ امَلِي

“My God, if my deeds appear small in respect to obedience to You

then my hope is great in respect to pure hopefulness in You”

for this blog is entitled “A Mercy Case” for a reason

and that is because at the end of the day

i am hoping in Mercy

have hoped in Mercy

and God willing

will continue to hope in Mercy

for as that prayer continues

“If my time of death is approaching while my deeds are still too short to approach me to You

I am then considering my confession of being guilty to be my means towards You”

But I need to be explicit that my hope is not unconnected to my love for you

for as Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq has reported to have said

as translated in the book of Ayatollah Modarresi

“Verily Allah Almighty will have mercy upon a man by the strength of his love for his son”

 

sometimes

when i close my eyes

i can see us hand in hand

in a place more beautiful than i have the words to express

where no fear nor grief exists

and we can discover forever

what it means that God made me your father

and you my son

 

i love you

 

dear angels,

pray for us

رَبَّنَا وَأَدْخِلْهُمْ جَنَّاتِ عَدْنٍ الَّتِي وَعَدتَّهُمْ وَمَن صَلَحَ مِنْ آبَائِهِمْ وَأَزْوَاجِهِمْ وَذُرِّيَّاتِهِمْ إِنَّكَ أَنتَ الْعَزِيزُ الْحَكِيمُ

“Our Lord! Admit them into the Gardens of Eden, which You have promised them, along with whoever is righteous among their forebears, their spouses and their descendants. Indeed You are the All-mighty, the All-wise.”

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love the prison

there is a swirling tempest in my soul

and there is no escape

it cannot let itself out

a prison of duty and empathy

have shut the doors

respite is temporary

and the waves surge

and yet

on the outside nothing moves

nor sound is made

 

i must quiet the fury

and find peace

in the reality of this day

dissolve the craving

for different people

different places

different activities

 

يا سلام

 

You are with me here

shouldn’t You be enough

for this seemingly unbreakable will

that dreams when imprisoned

unable to fully embrace

what You have decreed

 

يا غني

 

forgive this selfishness

There are moments when you have to ask yourself what sort of country you live in.

On April 22nd, I read an article in the New York Times that I was not ready to read. This line was all that mattered:

“42,773 people died from suicide in 2014”

It literally hurts in my chest to type that out.

So I posted the news article on my Twitter account, and waited.

Waited to see if there was any discussion of this issue.

Nothing.

Deafening silence.

Since I have no answers, I was hoping maybe someone else did.

42,773

42,773

42,773

Our country is literally killing itself from within.

May God protect us and our loved ones from whatever it is in American society that leads to such a social reality, and may God forgive us for not doing more to change it.

Ya Wadud Ya Rahman Ya Ghafur Ya Kareem Ya Salam Ya Wahhab Ya Raheem

Ya Allah Ya Allah Ya Allah

Allahumma salli ‘ala Muhammad wa ali Muhammad

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suffice me

write it into your mind

lying down

lights off

sleep waiting

to end another day

لا إله إلا الله

لا إله إلا الله

لا إله إلا الله

there is so much

that i can’t carry with me

to where i must go

but You do not need to be carried

You created that place

and all who dwell there

Witnessing the dream-fears of every heart

so You

O Inward in Your Outwardness

be with me

through the remembrance

that You know my dreams even when i cannot say them

and encompass my fears even as i run from them

suffice me

in my worries regarding both this world and the Hereafter

O Most Merciful of those who show mercy

Islam

You are the One who created my grandfather Adam and brought him to Earth

You drowned all the unbelievers of Noah’s time

You made fire cool for Abraham

You split the sea for Moses

You revived the dead for Jesus

and You gave victory to Muhammad over the entire Arabian peninsula

and spread Your Book through him to every corner of the world

Dearest God!

I am one of the believers in You

and in Your prophets

peace be upon them all

and in the Life that You have promised after our earthly death

make me from the people of the Garden

in the company of the Prophets of days gone past

and save me from the Fire

which most of humanity takes for a joke

we bear witness to this

publicly and privately

and strive to implement it as best we understand

please forgive us our ignorance and doubts and confusions and misunderstandings

please wipe away the sins from our records and protect us from ever returning to them

please inspire faith in the hearts of all of our families and friends

for we are all Your servants

created by You

manifested into this cosmos by a Will other than our own will

subject to ups and downs by a Wisdom other than our own wisdom

and we submit to You in Islam

following Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad

may Your peace be upon them all

always

There-is-an-environmental-framework-embedded-within-the-traditional-principles-of-Islam-Photograph-Hassan-Ammar-660x350

this night

i have this night

by Your grace

i have this night

let it not go to waste

i have this night

in it, my heart cries out to You

let me not be lost to this world

let me not give up hope

let me not begin to believe that the forest is not there

waiting

still waiting

i presume i will wake up tomorrow

another day, another responsibility

but tonight

let me dream

let me embrace the heart shattering notion

that You have no limit

no end that i can fathom

for i am part of what You have wrought

i am a drop in the shoreless sea

لا إله إلا الله

a sea that encompasses every name

of every human being

who has ever spoken of You

dear God

what Beauty I behold sometimes

in a word

in a glance

in a dream

in a hope

that my entire being shakes

quivers

loses control

and i want to rush to You

lose it all on love

risk everything

because whose promise can i trust more than Yours

my Lord

my body is trapped in this apartment tonight

but my soul flies to the edge of time and space

to the realm of ‘Ali and Fatima

may Your peace be upon them

beyond death and life

to Being itself

to Existence itself

to You

yes, it would be hard to live

if what i felt now was always there

and so Your grace will most likely veil it again

but tonight

let me show up at Your door

and cry out Your name

a lover gone mad

i will not leave until You let me in

and embrace me

and promise me that we will be together

forever

يا أرحم الراحمين

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