Am I Muslim Enough?
As a Muslim, have you ever felt the following: There just seems to be not enough time although everyone has the same 24 hours or 1440 minutes, in a day? Demands of life cause loads of stress for us all. We are always pulled in all directions. From educational obligation, work commitments to familial responsibilities.
One facet of life, as we blink and breathe, that is most often forgotten is one’s relationship to self. It is the building block of a lifelong structure that pervades and emanates all other relationships, including connection to one’s faith, which by extension is our Creator.
Later, Someday Maybe
Many would inevitably compartmentalise. We are not perfect beings by any measure; as flawed human beings with plenty of room to learn, grow and mature, a particular tendency would tend to dominate. It is best expressed through our inner monologue on the daily: “I can always schedule that for later” or “it can wait.”
The profound question is, how long can you keep extending ‘later’? A day, four weeks or a decade? One simple yet important task that always takes a backseat is prayer.
Are you one of them?
Naturally, feelings of guilt are bubbling rapidly yet we have become accustomed to instant justifications validating such actions. Our every second, minute and hour of everyday are consumed by priorities that appear to be more pressing. Education leading to some sort of accreditation, a diploma or degree of specialisation. That expensive piece of paper after years of learning. Akin to a key that opens up a door of possibilities and opportunities. A treacherous climb of a mountain.
It is, however, a journey full of rewards, including money. More pieces of paper to accumulate in stacks. In society, our worth is often measured by tangible social achievements. The bigger, the better. The more, the better. Really?
A caveat that we could easily ignore: It creates superficial appearances, both literally and symbolically, where every success or misstep is calculated. Where does our religious piety fit in? Do we shelve and schedule it for another day, perhaps in our old age?
Ironically, there are people who seemed to have reach a level of delicate control in leading a balanced life. As a first step, it is expressed in outward fashion, tangible forms of piety through clothing, such as the hijab, or having installed a prayer app in their phones. Look around. These are people you might very well know.
They are not affected as much by achievements or chasing after worldly rewards. Instead of spending that extra minute polishing a presentation for the next department meeting, they have chosen to carve out time to connect with the Lord instead. An admirable act, indeed. However, it bears remembering and repeating that a life of righteousness is partly informed by genuine connections that are not reflected by outward tangible portrayal of spiritual piety alone.
Just as important is how they choose to treat those around them. Do they pass judgment? Or, suffer from self-aggrandising thoughts that seek to put others down? A clear engagement in hypocritical religious piety.
What Is Your Religious Worth?
Must we always succumb to letting a piece of paper define our self-worth? Or, dictate every move in life? On the flipside, do we wholeheartedly choose to immerse in religious piety while disregarding other priorities and others in our life?
We begin with Bismillah in everything we do and hopefully, remember to utter Alhamdullilah for both the blessings and challenges that develop our maturity to become better beings, not only to those around us and our Creator, but also ourselves. As we always consciously choose to be kind to others and ourselves, our religious worth is as good as our subsequent thoughts and actions in the next second.
What are the chances of anyone having it all in life?
How do you measure your religious piety? What are the struggles that diminish your effort in maintaining your religious quotient? Share your thoughts in the comments section below and be a part of the global Muslim Pro community. While you are at it, smash the thumbs up button before sharing this article with your family and friends!