Bismi’Llāhi ir-Ramān ir-Raīm

In the Name of God, the Universally Merciful, the Singularly Compassionate


Many of the faithful eagerly anticipate the holy month of Ramaḍān. When it arrives, they celebrate. When it ends, they grieve its departure. They wait another year in the hope that Allāh ﷻ will allow them to live and receive the blessings of Ramaḍān once more.

The first third of the month buzzes with excitement. The last third of the month is particularly powerful, with believers increasing their acts of devotion to ensure that the month does not slip away without reaping its benefits. Ramaḍān culminates in the Night of Power, also called the Night of Destiny, which is one of the odd nights in the last ten days, described by Allāh ﷻ in the Holy Qur’ān as “…better than a thousand months, wherein the angels descend by the Permission of their Lord ﷻ, bearing with them all the Orders—Peace, until the coming of the dawn” (al-Qadar, 97:3-5).

In many ways, the middle third of Ramaḍān is the most challenging time. At this point, most have settled into a comfortable routine. Habits may have crept back in to ensure that one is not too challenged or burdened. One may feel as though s/he is not making any spiritual progress, and may even feel bored. Whatever the case may be, we risk going through the motions of the outer sacred forms, losing sight of our initial intention(s), and forgetting the goal—Allāh ﷻ.

At this critical stage, we need patient perseverance (ṣabr). We are reminded that we do not possess anything ourselves that allows us to persist in any endeavor. All strength and power comes from Allāh ﷻ. We are only able to the extent that He ﷻ empowers us. We might say that at least we have the awareness that we don’t have; this is indeed a great realization. Yet even then, where did this awareness come from? The answer should be obvious; everything is from the Bounty of Your Lord ﷻ. To the extent that this awareness and the positive realizations it engenders motivate you to turn to your Lord ﷻ, you are probably experiencing humility. As Allāh ﷻ says in the Holy Qur’ān, “Seek Allāh’s Help ﷻ with patient perseverance and prayer. It is indeed difficult except for those who are humble” (al-Baqarah, 2:45).

It is often when we don’t seem to be going anywhere spiritually that a great opportunity is presenting itself. The mature believer does not need grand visions or mystical experiences to sustain his faith in the Almighty ﷻ. The daily, small acts of devotion to Allāh ﷻ are the bread and butter of the believer. The consistent remembrance of the Friend ﷻ, day after day, through all the seemingly mundane moments, is a great achievement. Simplicity is precious, small is beautiful. As the Prophet Muḥammad ﷺ said, “Work is worship.”

May we all persist  in our remembrance of and devotion to the Beloved ﷻ, seeking only His Pleasure ﷻ, with love and gratitude. And Allāh ﷻ knows best.


© Ḥakīm Ilyās Kāshānī