Ramadan Series??? A Gentle Reminder


Author’s Note: LOL, not me starting this series and completely neglecting it. But hey! I was focused this Ramadan.

I can’t believe Ramadan is ending soon. SubhanAllah. I wanted to journal every week, but your girl was focused on other things. 

For my brothers and sisters, I am so proud of you. I hope you are proud of yourselves too. I wanted to take this time to give you gentle reminders. During this holy month, you may have been more present. You may have gotten closer to Allah. You may have picked up and read the Quran every single day. You may have stopped listening to music and let go of the attachment you had with music. You may have prayed more. You may have dressed more modestly. You may have listened to more Islamic podcasts and lectures. You may have visited the mosque more often. You may have put Allah at the center. 

What happens next? 

Over the past few Ramadans, I wish I had reminders. I wish someone reminded me of the things I did during the holy month for the sake of Allah. You worked so hard in this blessed month, now what? Do you go back to the same routine you had before the month of Ramadan? Or do you create a new routine? Do you start over, now that you’ve changed? Now that you’re more aware of your religion? Now that you’ve gotten closer to Allah? 

All this hard work should not be thrown out the window after Ramadan ends. For the last few days, try to journal your experience. Write down all the things you’ve done. Write down any emotions you’ve felt. So, you can always revisit and have reminders for yourself. To remind yourself of the healthy habits you built during this holy month. To remind yourself of how you tried your best. To remind yourself of the connections you’ve made. To remind yourself of the things in this Dunya you detached from for the sake of Allah. 

It’ll be hard. I know this. However, try to hold yourself accountable and know that you’re trying your best. 

Written by Diaka Thiam 🙂

Ramadan Series: The Gift of Pausing

Recently, I experienced something that frustrated me on my first day of Ramadan. This Holy month is about detachment from my desires and distractions. It’s about getting closer to Allah. It’s about being present and mindful of my thoughts and actions. This month is my restart for the year to cleanse my mind and soul. To heal, reflect, and give. Although life continues, Allah provides us with a chance to pause during this month. And that’s what I chose to do this year- learn how to pause. You’re right; I cannot pause school, activities, work, or responsibilities. But, I can pause myself, meaning I can stop for a few minutes, an hour, maybe two, and be mindful of Allah. We are so busy, moving at a speed that sometimes scares us to just pause. We forget the art of pausing. The art of being mindful. The art of looking at our surroundings and appreciating the beauty of life. The art of watching the trees bloom back to life during spring and birds chirping beautiful melodies in the early morning. The art of giving back to any and everyone. The art of gathering as a community, your community. 

I was sad last night, but I decided to pause. The frustration I felt was valid, but what frustrated me will not hold power. I refuse to let it keep its power. So, I breathed, I prayed, and I read. I spent time with my family. 

Pausing, of course, is difficult, but it’s manageable. I believe you can do it. You can take a few minutes to breathe. A few minutes to write. A few minutes to put the phone down. A few minutes to check in with yourself. If you allow it, someone or something will be the thief of your pausing moment. Do not let that happen. 

Ramadan Mubarak, and may Allah continue to give you the peace you’ve been yearning for. 

Written by Diaka Thiam.