Monday, 29 June 2015

The Holy Land in the Holy Month

In a city where there is no such thing as silence, a city where lights never go off, a city where cars never leave the road alone, a city where everything happens in a super fast pace, I wonder, is there anything more beautiful and admirable than this place where I have been fortunate enough to enter with tranquility in my heart?
In this Blessed month of Ramadan in which peace is the only word which the Muslim hearts speak out, I was fortunate enough to visit Makkah and perform Umrah. It wasn't the first time of course, living in this country and in a city which is so close to the Holy city; one is bound to visit the largest Masjid on this earth often. But this time, I had to mention the beauty of it to the entire world with pride.
So we began our journey; murmuring prayers on the way and longing to pray to Allah S.W.T in this blessed month and craving to reap the rewards by pleasing Him. Hundreds and thousands of cars passed by for the same purpose, rushing to Worship, even imagining so many people of different race, nationality, gender, praying in front of the Lord, and encircling the Kaaba in pure black and white gives me tears of happiness. Subhanallah (Glory be to Allah).
Masjid Al Haram
Then, we stopped at the checkpoint, where young police officers smiled with all their hearts and handed over four packets of Iftar package which contained 3 dates, a cake bar and a bottle of water each, and he asked us if we wanted more. We couldn't help but smile at their generosity for one can be quite sure that nowhere would millions of people get food for absolutely free of cost; quenching the hunger and thirst of everyone without even asking asking for it!
 It surprises me because they don't provide food for a few  hundreds or thousands, but to all the 1.5 million people who come to the Holy land. No road tax, no food tax, and sometimes they don't even charge for travelling in the buses to the place which is kilometers away! How awesome can they get?
It is not just the people who serve this nation whose hospitality is remarkable in this month, there are others from many countries whose hearts get softened right at the entrance of Haram and are ready to do anything to make others happy. To bring a smile in the other's face is an ambition of all. The beauty of it all brings an inner peace, as though a charm has descended to enlighten the hearts.
Qahwa (Arabic Coffee) 
While the men and women walked in the Sae'e area, there were a few random ladies and men standing with a box filled with dates, and flasks of Qahwa (arabic coffee) ready to be poured out for anybody who wished to have them. As the men ran under those greenish white and golden lights, they grabbed a few dates, a cup of qahwa and flashed a smile as a token of gratitude and began running again.
It is not a thing to be surprised about, this kind of hospitality is seen more than often in the Holy Masjid, but the happiness one gets when serving others is priceless. It was the same for me.
Young men of the defense department, scouts and guides, volunteers to push wheelchairs (for people who are not well enough to walk) and the Heroes of Haram who square up a certain area in a minute or two and clean the entire area with the most refreshing scent on this earth etc; are those people who need a standing applause.
They are such selfless people who do not ask if we need any help, they offer to help. The most beautiful thing about it is that they do not do it to please us alone, they do it to please Allah  (S.W.T) and to give us the privilege to please Him with utmost comfort. Our forefathers never had the facilities of today when they performed their religious duties, but today, no amount of words can explain the benevolence of these people and the remarkable work they are doing for this Ummah who come rushing to this Holy Land.
People of different nations, status, color, each and everyone standing uniformly in a perfect line and bowing down as the Imam (one who leads prayer) commands them to is a sight one can cherish forever. The intricately designed carpets with a fragrance of Arabian Oud, beautifully embroided Qiswa cloth wrapped around Ka'aba perfumed with strong Atr is to be inhaled forever. To get back from Masjid Al Haram is the hardest part for a worshiper as that is the place where every human can realize the meaning of inner peace and love without any boundaries. No matter who you are, billionaire of the world, ruler of the nations, or a person on the roadside, every one is equal in the sight of Allah and in the House of Allah- Masjid Al Haram. 
May Allah Bless them all for the abundance of efforts they have taken to serve this Ummah and may we all continuously strengthen our hearts with generosity. Islam is about integrity, peace and unconditional love, may this be evident in our actions too
Insha Allah.