Hisham Al-Hadi updated his facebook status straight from Al-Haram, Makkah: “Amazing Qiyaam by Sudais and Shuraim.” That’s when I snapped. It has always been my lifetime wish to perform umrah in Ramadan and traweeh prayers behind my all-time favorite reciters- Sheikh sudais and Shuraim. Like it wasn’t upsetting enough that my Ramadan umrah is still pending- people telling me that world-popular qaris are leading the prayers right at the time when I was desperately wishing I could go too, sent me deep into the gloomy pits. I did what anyone would normally have done. I whined. Whined about it to anyone who would listen. Texted and whined. Whined and texted a bit more. Tried to kick the unrest out of my system. At the same I found myself praying a little too earnestly that I get my share of it some day too…
During that back-and-fourth messaging episode, my friend texted back: “Thinking i wish… is always counter productive…” Her point was- whining will take you nowhere. My sister had been rolling her eyes all along and trying to put the same point across. The rational voice in my head had been telling me to give it a break too. It took this much magnitude of contradictory forces to bring my frenzied state to normal. When I got my head back straight, I replayed the whole conversation in my head and looked at myself with distaste. Not that whining is some finger-pointing, shameless sin- but it’s categorized under “vain conversations” and this is something People of the Paradise refrain from, like Allah (swt) mentions here;
قَدْ أَفْلَحَ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ – الَّذِينَ هُمْ فِى صَلاَتِهِمْ خَـشِعُونَ – وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ عَنِ اللَّغْوِ مُّعْرِضُونَ –
Successful indeed are the believers, who are humble in their prayers and who shun vain conversation.” [23:1-3]
Obviously, vain conversations are a big no-no if only by shunning them you get the label of a successful believer. I believe. Check. I pray. Check. I don’t jabber. Err- still working on this one. Guess all social evils (back-stabbing and slander to name a few) begin when you let your tongue go loose. Grumbling and whining are probably the most applied themes of any conversation lately. Mine and yours included. Recall all those hang-outs and daily highschool common room scenarios. What starts as small, random talk always turns into gossip and secrets-exposing clash.
The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said;
He who believes in Allah and the Last Day should say what is good or keep silent. [Sahih Muslim]
If you’re a good reader, you would be quick to notice that this is the second time it is implied that “watch what you say if you are a believer in the true meaning of it!”
So count your blessings. Like, instead of thinking wishfully or whining about another lost chance, I could have just taken comfort from the fact that I’ve atleast performed umrah once, unlike many people who still get starry-eyed at the very thought of it. Next, channel this burst of energy positively. Do something productive with it. Naturally, you’ll feel like letting go of your bottled-up tirade, but try to hold it right there. Analyze your options. You can pick up that distasteful piece of silicon technology (aka your cellphone) and talk to everyone about it (sorely tempting, yes) or you can simply pray and let the Greater Power take care of everything (a wise step). I had chosen to do both. But hey, what good was option A? Fruitless. Just another string of babble added to my Records. I could have blogged about my stay at that Holy place, the majestic aura of it and everything… yeah, that would have been worth it.
But all’s not lost. I’ve just channeled what was left of my effervescence into doing all that I’ve oh-so-saintly suggested to you and writing about vain conversations: the ultimate brain-and-time-wasters, courtesy of that jolting “counter-productive” text. 😀