Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Obedient arms of Abdullah


Alhamdulillah, God made my eyes fell on one young attractive man at Masjid Khalid Al-Walid on the first night of Ramadhan. Let's call him Abdullah. 

He had the most jovial face, smiling away, this energetic youth. Then I noticed...he had only one-fourth of an arm, on both sides. Allahu Akbar! I thought how could he manage that joyful demeanor? As he approached the saf, he cheerfully patted the back of the man next to him. Some other men just walked into the prayer hall like a stranger ignoring the people around them, and they have nice long arms to stretch out.

Then I watched how Abdullah did his takbiratul ihram. Allahu Akbar! How he placed his little arms on his chest. O people, we could do that with hands and palms touching. How beautiful is that?

Then Abdullah bowed down. Obviously he couldn't touch his knees like we do in rukuk. Then, unlike us, he didn't have any support as he knelt on the floor to prostrate. Allahu Akbar! Can you picture that?

Then he sat. Unlike us, he didn't have anything to put on his thighs! Then, he stood up effortlessly, whereas many of us struggle to stand up for the following rakaah. Subhanallah! What is this...that I saw in Abdullah?

Imagine how Abdullah raise his little arms when making du'a? Subhanallah. Oh dear...I cannot begin to truly imagine how much Abdullah might desire to hold a tasbih?

As people were leaving the masjid, somehow my eyes again fell on Abdullah's happy countenance, mashaAllah. Pardon me for being melodramatic but I have so far seen many limbless people looking downbeat or as beggars on the streets. But Abdullah was one amazing guy! He dressed very well and appeared more excited about doing teraweh than most other men who looked a little exhausted from fasting.

Hold on to that picture of Abdullah having only one-fourth of an arm, on both sides. And ponder this opening line of Chapter 6 on fasting, in Ihya Ulumuddin by Imam Al-Ghazali:
"Fast is one-fourth of faith as the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasalam) said: Fast is half of patience and patience is half of faith."

Fasting is one-fourth of faith. If we had only one-fourth of an arm, would we be fasting and praying as joyfully as Abdullah? Or might our patience and faith be severely chipped? 

Allahumma a'inni ala zikrika wa shukrika wa husni 'ibadatik.

p/s Let's cheer for the participants at the upcoming London Paralympic Games! Yes we can clap. Abdullah can't : (

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