I was born a Muslim. You don’t really get to choose your religion when you’re born right?. You are taught how to pray, some regulations and guidelines that you must follow and you’re good to go. But, is it really only about following some rules that you don’t even understand or get the reason behind them. Why do we follow them?
Al7amdulelah. That’s the one thing I’ve learnt in 2012. Uptil recently, I’ve always hated the fact that I am fat. I put/used it as a reason for everything bad that has happened in my life; Rejection, not being social, no hope for anything good, depression, and basically everything bad that I’ve passed through.
As it turns out, being fat was the best thing that happened to me in the teenage period. Yes, it lead to not being social and being afraid of rejection – therefore ignoring any event or so. But, on the other hand, now I am really thankful for it. Why? It shaped the – charming, funny, ambitious, tenacious, kind of social – person who is writing this blog post right now (don’t believe all of what u’ve just read). I taught myself web development in the period when I sat at home doing nothing because I was obese. I taught myself a lot of stuff that helped shaping my career 7 years later (that is now). What I learned did help me in college and helped me getting the 1st full time job at Mash Ltd and later a job at Link Development. Moreover, that knowledge got me to help a couple of friends in projects, they thought I was nice and before I knew it – I had a lot of friends. It’s like Allah is taking care of me, something that I had not realize by that time. I have knowledge and friends!
I wasn’t really that religious. People might had thought that I am a religious person, while others who knew me did know I wasn’t. I just followed the guidelines and the rules – I tend to do that. I respected the norms and values of this culture, no more no less.
During college – actually the last 2 years at college – a lot of unfortunate events have happened. One of which I couldn’t really handle that well – or that’s what I thought. I was angry, mad, sad, and depressed at the same time (I assure you, best friends had some hard time from a whining person – again, me). That caused lots of negative energy. Turns out, I work best when I am – well – not happy. That negative energy I got was accidentally, fortunately for me, directed towards working: projects, assignments .. etc. I got the best grades during my entire studying years in college AND I made some great friends who stood by my side and helped me get over the “series of unfotrunate events”. Again, it’s like Allah is taking care of me. I still had not realize it by that time.
Yes I gave religion some attention as I grew up but I did not think about reading and getting to really know it. Other than the religion books that we had to study – wait, I mean MEMORIZE – and get grades out of it, I did not give it a one minute thought to read and yes, I had a LOT of time to read and do anything that I wanted.
6th of May, 2012. The worst and the best day in my life so far. The worst thing has happened and I was kind of pathetic. It was 3 PM when I listened to something I’ve been listening to my entire life and did not really concentrate on what it means, Al Azan. At that time, I was alone and in a bad mood – kind of an understatement – and then I heard it. I live beside a mosque. It’s like door to door thing. In my life, I hadn’t considered once getting up and go to the mosque to pray – except for Friday prayers. But, this Azan was different. I felt like Allah was calling me specifically this time. I went down to pray and while I was praying, I found out suddenly that I was smiling. I was kind of calm and neutral for the first time in what seemed to be an endless era. I never missed a prayer in the mosque, when I could, after that.
The next thing I did was reading (I love reading in general). I went to my Dad’s books and got the Quran explanation. I started to realize I knew nothing about my own religion – or just knew the very basics of it. I did some kind of research on the internet on websites like IslamWeb and read a LOT of articles about something – related to my crisis – and one thing led to another and I read a lot of topics about Al Islam. It all just makes sense and is easy.
It was the time when I realized that I owe Allah a lot and that I have got a lot of sins on my record. But what do you know?
قُلْ يَا عِبَادِيَ الَّذِينَ أَسْرَفُوا عَلَى أَنْفُسِهِمْ لَا تَقْنَطُوا مِنْ رَحْمَةِ اللَّهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًا إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ
As it turns out, the crisis that has happened IS the best thing and the biggest lesson to learn from. Not that I don’t want to fix things though – I need to fix them now more than ever.
I just wanted to tell anyone who is reading this, don’t wait for your crisis.
Whatever you’re passing through right now, It will turn out to be the best for you one way or another in the next few months and maybe years. Just believe and have faith. Start now. Read about your religion and learn it. We should also change the way the religion is taught at schools. I kind of blame the education for what I/we’ve reached now.
Finally, I will end this post with a wish that I can be better the next year isA, 2013.