By Aya Zaki
“Be in this world as a stranger or a wayfarer “ -Our Beloved ﷺ .
If we want to travel far, we need to travel light. But unloading those suitcases from all the extra luggage that we think we really need can be a struggle especially if we don’t see it as extra, but as necessary. Internalizing the meaning of travelling and treating this world as only a passage can be a challenge for many of us. Letting go of things we think are essential in order to make room for Allah’s love and light can take us some time, some endurance, and lots of patience.
Among the most difficult tests for people who stand for and follow the Truth is often letting go of societal conformity and with it losing some people’s acceptance or inclusiveness. How can we overcome that? How can we reprioritize the things in our lives so that Allah always comes first? How can we see things through a different lens and cultivate peace within?
I cannot claim that I know what it means to be all alone on the path. But there were times where I had felt not understood by many around me, so I can relate to that bitterness of feeling strange where you once felt embraced. The need to be fully accepted and loved are so intrinsic to our human nature, so there is no denying them. Instead of denying them we need to redefine the terms or ideas in our minds and transcend into the unseen.
Although the cures might differ from one person to another, the definition of loneliness revolves mainly around a sense of isolation or disconnection. Knowing that, we can evidently realize how “connecting” to Allah is the perfect cure – a complete turning and dependency on Allah, and what better dependency than on the One in whose Hands are the Heavens and the Earth. He mercifully weans us from depending on others to save us all the heartbreaks, disappointments or unfulfilment. He teaches us to turn to the inexhaustible Source instead of running after a mirage. He gives us richness in our hearts and teaches us to give; wanting only His reward and love. And along the way by asking Him, He blesses us with those whom we love purely in Him so that He gathers us under His Shade on the Day when there is no shade except His.
“There is a loneliness more precious than life. There is a freedom more precious than the world. Infinitely more precious than life and the world is that moment when one is alone with God” –Rumi.
Finding peace and warmth in His companionship can truly heal. Al Jabbar- the One who mends the broken pieces of our hearts, will never leave you. There’s a quote that so truthfully says: the only one who can truly satisfy the human heart is the One who made it. Just know that love comes in many forms and the purest of them spring from within the wells of your heart, right from the Source.
“As for those who believe and do good, the Most Compassionate will ˹certainly˺ bless them with ˹genuine˺ love” surah Maryam: 96.
Fast forwarding and contemplating all the rewards we have been promised might rekindle that childish zeal within us: Remembering the infinite rewards of patience, the elevation and purification of tests, the ease that comes with hardship, and the Gardens that await. On the beginning of my path I would visualise how I would recount to our mother Khadija in Jannah all the obstacles Allah made me overcome and my soul would smile. Belonging to the Beloved’s ﷺ ummah is the warmest source of connection. Nurturing our bond with him ﷺ has surely quenched the thirst of so many souls at so many times.
“Indeed, ˹it is˺ We ˹Who˺ created humankind and ˹fully˺ know what their souls whisper to them, and We are closer to them than ˹their˺ jugular vein” Surah Qaaf: 16.
An integral part of our lives are our relationships with others. Many of us fear change because we’re just too scared to lose our self-image either in our own minds or in the minds of others. We’re afraid of losing ourselves or the acceptance of those around us. The antidote lies in redefining the social concepts in our minds so that we find approval and belonging in Allah alone.
“Close friends will be enemies to one another on that Day, except the righteous” surah Zukhruf: 67.
Let His sight be the only one that matters. Seek approval from Him and Him alone and treat all others in ways that are pleasing to Him.
There’s this quote that says Let go and let God, let Him lead you, let His Light fill your soul and shine through, let His Guidance be your way, let your submission to Him transform you just like a metamorphosis. One of the bigger challenges of letting go is letting go of our social personas. Breaking through the mental images that we or people have of ourselves and living authentically can take courage and a strong purpose. But with it comes freedom and a realization that what truly defines us is not how people see us or how we see ourselves but rather how Allah the all-Loving sees us. It is our relationship with Him that truthfully defines us. How we surrender, how we repent, how we believe, how we love, how we strive to do good, and what we carry in our hearts; are what make us who we are.
And with that comes freedom from images; we submit to only one standard; the sight of Allah. Allah’s utmost Generosity and vastness of Mercy give us so much more room than the confines that we or society put ourselves in, they also give us the constant chances of renewal. His Merciful Sight becomes our Source of strength and solace, it becomes so much so until He elevates us to the ranks of those who see no one but Him, deal with no one but Him, and seek no one but Him. Those are the richest and happiest of people.
” Richness does not lie in the abundance of worldly matters but richness is the richness of the soul” –Prophet Muhammad ﷺ
It might be seen as a struggle but so much good can come out of it. Good like roots of love for Allah that would have never grown without such solitude with Him. Good like certitude that has flourished from special encounters with His perfect Actions, Names, and Attributes. Good like patience that will elevate you in ranks by His Mercy. Good like quiet time for reflection and realignment. Good like learning to hand over all your needs, dreams, and fears to Him and Him alone.
Good like asking Allah for good companions yet knowing and living the reality that Allah is Al Sahib; the ultimate Companion, in this travelling of Dunya unto our Eternal Abode.
May we reach our Home next to Him safely contented by His constant companionship, may we reach it delightfully, may we reach it easily and may we reach it with souls full of light and love. Ameen
About the author:
Aya Zaki is a mother who is passionate about education and art. She aspires to be a tool for planting seeds of Allah’s Love and Light.
Read more from her at http://fromatwinklyheart.blogspot.com/