By Nadia Cassim
For a long time, whilst considering what to write around this profound subject, I stared at a blank screen lost for words. How do I begin dissecting this massive ‘experience’ and putting its significance into words. I have been through many Ramadan’s, thanks to the mercy of the Almighty and each has brought along its own set of challenges, blessings and lessons. Each Ramadan, I become more anxious, more aware of the atmosphere around me as we draw closer to the last ten days of the Holy month.
How can I not feel the difference in the air that I breathe during those last ten nights? After all, the Almighty so beautifully states in the Holy Quran that “The night of Majesty is better than a thousand months. The angels and the Divine Word come down therein, by the command of their Lord to (determine) each and every affair” (97: 3-4). If the angels are all around us, then surely there must be an awesome amount of Nur (light) and blessings that surround our earthly bodies that cannot be comprehended.
The Night of Majesty however, is not just one in which heavenly beings descend upon us, but it carries much more weight than that, for as Allah explains in the Quran it is the night during which “ every matter full of wisdom (and substance) is explained distinctly” (44:4). It is the month during which the Holy Quran, the Book we use to guide us through all aspects of our existence on this earth as appointed supreme religious heads by Allah, was revealed. It is also the Night during which every matter is decided (Holy Quran, 44:5).
Just thinking about the fact that there is one night a year during which my life matters are determined for the year ahead, kind of scares me a bit. Imagine, with just prayer I can ask for anything from the Most Gracious and He may declare it! The idea that just one night can change the course of my life forever is mind-blowing! We should not forget however, that we cannot ask anything of The Most Merciful without first showing humility and seeking His forgiveness.
Here I draw upon the example of our father, Ebrahim (AS), one of the most revered and loved Prophets of all time, when he made the following Dua (prayer) to His Lord. He said, “My Lord! Make me a constant and steadfast observer of Prayer and my children (as well). Our Lord! (bestow Your Grace on us) and accept my prayer. Our Lord! Protect me, my parents and the believers, against faults on the day when the reckoning takes place” (Holy Quran, 14:40-41).
The Night of Majesty is a powerful and blessed night indeed. We are afforded the opportunity to seek forgiveness and the bounties of the Almighty together, whilst fulfilling His commandment of fasting. It is also a night of peace and this peace lasts until the rise of dawn (Quran, 97:5). My sincere wish is that we all benefit from this blessed night and that all of our prayers are answered. Ameen.