Vastness of God, الله Ramadan Epihanies 

The vastness that is Allah (swt)-

As I pray, I sometimes shrink in this feeling, I am so small. I am so small compared to this room filled with other worshippers, I am so small compared to this masjid, this city, the amount of people in this world.
What are we compared to God? I looked down at my hands, I bent my fingers to stretch them out during prayer, my joints ached but we’re not stiff. I saw the ease in my gestures and didn’t realize just how amazing it was to have these things. 

Not even on my command, my fingers bend and relief themselves of work. They cup into thankful wells for when I make Dua. They do whatever I want them to do, and I don’t even understand how they work. 
What’s all this compared to the greatness and vastness of Allah? 

I always wonder, looking at my hands, how people don’t believe there’s something bigger out there. We have this idea that God is this one being that somehow stays put in one place, looks a certain way, and isn’t omnipresent. In reality, it’s the opposite. He envelopes the earth. His mercy reaches the very darkness of corners that haven’t seen mercy in years. He lights up places that have been dark on His command, not our education or enlightenment. The problems of the world are nothing for God our successes are but a fraction of happiness that we enjoy then find fleeting.
He is everywhere and everything. He owns it all. He watches over us, beside us, soothes over the subtle tremors of our hearts. 
Sincerely stumbling 

-Sarah 

Your Promise

A poem compiled in a span of 65 days, sleepless nights, and depths of sadness and happiness at 2 am. These are random pieces of notes I wrote and made them into one peom explaining the inner dialogue I have with Allah (swt) every time I need to go back to Him. Which is often. 

Bismillah Al Rahman Al Rahim

“Your Promise”

Wa3di Allahi 7aq
Verily his promise is true
She raced to her Lord every month after a time of missing Him; 

of being absent of His presence . because she faded from Him, 

 Of knowing He missed her and loved her too. 
All the while Trying to gain His favor while failing. 

trying to gain some one else’s smile and laughter for her and no one else 

Hasten to your Lord on soft knees, 
ask Him anyway, don’t be shy, don’t be shy
Just another night of cold pressed thoughts at the bottom of the ice berg
Resurfacing now matter how hard you try to forget. And you do forget. 

You smile a smile that you don’t know why it’s there and can’t resist it’s crevices on your face.
Sometimes happiness is small, it’s a small thing like a the torn mint leaves that cascading into your tea after you’ve already filtered it, 

after you said things couldn’t get better but Allah shows you better every day 
He shows you the stars that exist millions of miles away 

as your self doubt should be 
He shows you the trees their roots are unbroken and unshaken 
Why can’t I be as strong as Maryam rd. She shook the date palm and let nothing shake her 
He shows you mountains that remind us of elderly wisdom , the grandparents of nature 
Hasten to your Lord on soft knees, do not be shy 
You think He is far but it’s only you that’s far, drifting together like ships in the night
Ask Him with the honest voice of your trembling heart
This is the way the heart works,

Allah swt will test His toughest Warriors with trials upon trials because 

He knows you will pass but you don’t 
It’s like I committed my heart to hopin’ for you, and ya Allah I feel like I missed out on your promise

Wa3da Allahi 7aq, You promised
She ran to her lord, this time quicker and with a lighter bounce in her step. 
This promise isn’t right now, it’s later. 

It’s bigger than a pinky..my pinky. This promise only works if you swear that He is one, what a humbling condition for an ungrateful race. 
Your promise ya Allah, 

My heart beats slowly like a child walking sneakly down the hall 

Your promise, keeps me on bended knee 
You made room in my heart when I saved a corner for you

You told me it’s okay to love for His sake and save some room for those people anyway 
Your promise, is my carpet bound motivation , the only reason I bow with no hesitation 
My strength is in I won’t surrender to myself or to the faint whisperer

My strength is knowing He is always with me. 
Your promise ya Allah, is what keeps me on bended knee. 

-Sarah
I recited this last night at a poetry slam. I’ve never felt so happy and relieved. I would have cried if I was standing, but I sat down and Alhamdulilah Allah has ways of calming our untamed hearts. 

No Lease Here: Reflection on the heart

  

Always in My Heart-By Carbine of Society6

Salam everyone, 
I finally finished Yasmin Mogahed’s book, Reclaim Your Heart. This is a portion of my reflections that resulted from this read. This has been in the drafts for 51 days. Writing tells you when you’re ready to post-muscle memory when you’re not done yet, and heart when you can’t think of anything else.
           I don’t know if this is weird or not, but I noticed that every space in my heart has been occupied by people I truly love/ed for the sake of Allah, and have either passed on, left, had to let go of, or just don’t have as big a space anymore. I think it’s because I let myself, without noticing, have those people be my immediate source of happiness and comfort, and not knowing that they were just as temporary as the happiness and comfort they offered. Crazy how Allah (swt) will knock out every person in your life that left you preoccupied only to have more space, if not a majority of it, be for Him. It happens pretty easily, after years and constant work of maintaining those relationships, that they can disappear. Evidence for that? Look at who has made you shed the most tears, and ask yourself if they were worth it. Then compare the tears you have for Him, and you’ll find those were the ones that shook your heart instead of making it sink. Nothing’s wrong with being attached to people, it’s human nature, but we can’t let those attachments be our life source. It’s an endless battle with the self I’m sure, every day. And to say that no one is worth your tears is false. A few people I can say are worth it if they were only in arm’s reach. Admitting the truth to my heart has been one of the most liberating things I’ve ever done. 

         I had a friend once tell me that it was okay to leave space for people in your heart. I could do this? I don’t have to lose it all? I don’t have to be a heartless rock? Lol.

         I guess everyone has different ways they battle with their heart. I know that in months time, days, my heart has and will change because I asked Him to take it and keep me on His path. It’s hard to admit to yourself that even good things can lead you astray. You might not even convince yourself of it in a lifetime. 

         Your heart needs sanding. Get rid of the rough edges. Your heart needs to be lit up by new candle light, by faith. Your heart needs to get rid of hatred and darkness. 

Your heart needs to be for Him. 
I told myself this. I’m telling you this. I am beyond done with trying to tame my heart. It’s free. It flutters when it wants to. It shakes all the time. In my deepest moments of anger it seems to disappear. I don’t feel it beating or maybe that’s a blood pressure thing. But when I’m in my deepest moments of solitude, pain, and even joy, it beats lightly, like a child trying to be sneaky coming down the hall. 

And I guess my biggest fear is that it stops shaking all together. It stops beating for those who I think of constantly. That it stops fluttering. Sometimes this is inevitable. Sometimes this is necessary. I only pray to God that my break is a clean one, and that I skip one beat and tread on. 

Take care of your heart. Think of it. Think of what will make it stronger. You can face anything. You can keep battling and breaking while maintaining a put together shell. Those are the people I wish I’m always around- because they’re honest. I want to be honest to myself before anyone else. If that’s someone’s definition of weakness, I say that’s my permanently validity-of which I will never trade for the world. 

Sincerely stumbling, 

-Sarah 

Baraka is a Bigger than Me

Salam guys! Been a short while.

Ya ever have those moments where you just know Allah (swt) is doing His best for you and you still suck and are undeserving?

Me. 

I keep listening to lectures by Imams telling me how I need to look at what I have instead of what I don’t. That I need to be happy for what I’ve got. And honestly, I think we all take what we have for granted and don’t place enough emphasis on what we have over what we desperately want in the moment. 

It’s crazy how our state of mind can be changed by one thing. I regret not taking advantage of my mindset when I was less busy, when I was less of a sap wanting to be in love like everyone else, when I didn’t have my family relying on me even more now, when I didn’t have the missing spot in my heart where certain friends were, when I didn’t have life changing decisions pressure me, when I didn’t have to keep my struggles to myself because nowadays, if you want your sincerity and happiness ruined, just tell someone. I’m a salt, I know.

It’s not enough to not want to feel a bad again, you have to refuse it. You have to want to be better. Let Him in. Allah’s love is boundless. 
I guess it’s out of my control, because I had different worries then. I don’t remember what they were, but I do know that in the moment, they consumed every ounce of my being. I would remind myself only recently, that, “this won’t matter in a year” and now it’s more like “this won’t matter in 5, this won’t matter in the next week.” All this because I’m waiting to worry about some thing else. I’m asking Allah to take me out of this rut I’m in and find the peace I need. Every part of our life has been calculated and planned. It’s only hit me recently that everything truly comes from Allah. You’d think that’s obvious right? 

Well, sometimes we think that people are truly powerful enough to influence our lives so much so that we think their will is greater than Allah’s. I find this to be such a struggle to contend with. How can a person have so much power? Allah isn’t changing their being, because they don’t want to change. They don’t want to change themselves. 

It’s so true that if you want to affect the outcome of your situation and status with Allah, you need to change. It’s like constant building and tearing down of yourself. This is how I feel. I build myself up, and up, then let certain things crash through me. I’m again on my knees to Allah begging for help. Because no one gets it but you. No one gets how much you constantly edit yourself. How you hate your thoughts because your heart disagrees and thinks things will get better. And things do get better, painstaking, over so much time. No one sees how you feel broken, but look alive just because you fixed your make up that day. Little things like this have made me happy, it’s dumb, but it’s my thing. Some days it’s just laughing with my mom about dumb things, or annoying my siblings. I want that happiness to overwhelm me, because when I have my family around, my cousins, my loyal friends, I feel so beautiful. I feel like I’m whole on the inside, beautiful on the inside, not a construction site with hazard signs and caution tape.

As much as Allah knows I’m begging to be out of my trials, I know that I have them because He loves me and knows I’m a champ. He knows how I am, he knows my heart and subhanAllah everything has been working in my favor, as in, I’ve been seeing Him more and more in my life. 

I’m learning a lot about myself and one thing is for sure. I suck at letting go. Not because I can’t, but because I fear the pain of breaking and breakage that’ll leave me again on my  knees. I need to be in that position more often though, and it shouldn’t take heart break and headaches to do that. Someone once said to always remember Allah in the good times too. I find that I have more of those and I’m sure we all do. In that case, I pledge that my life is gonna be spent editing myself. Thinking of myself and how my life isn’t just mine. My well being is for Allah, my parents, my siblings and my friends who love me and rely on me. A lot of people will say your life is yours. And to an extent, it is. But I can’t be selfish and not believe that people need me and want me to happy. That thought alone brings me so much comfort and rise in self love. That’s partly why I love teaching. People need you. People rely on you, and you know yourself and are thinking “seriously, me? I’m really not great” lol then I bask in my narcissism and agree to the compliments because I am. I work hard and I know my heart. It’s time to be proud of the goodness and light in us, and show off the Iman Allah has instilled in us. It’ll be contaigious. So much so, that when you’re not the one who’s being the positive one, your company will bring you up in ways you never thought possible.
I’m a work in progress. I pray that whoever I stay friends with, whoever of my family doesn’t disown me lol,  whoever I marry, knows this and loves me all the same. 
-Sarah 

Duaas for the heart 

يا مقلب القلوب ثبت قلبي على دينك
oh turner of the hearts, turn my heart (keep my heart steadfast) on your path, Your religion. 
If you want something that saves your heart from any temporary occupancy that does nothing but hold you down in this dunya, use this Duaa. 
To me it also means to submit my heart to the One who made it and won’t ever break it. People will let you down, you’ll let others down, it’s life, but it’s all a little less of a burden on our ever battling hearts to let Him take over. 
Spread the Salam. Be kind. Be gracious. Don’t let anything phase you. It’s better to be the person who does good no matter what than to let obstacles change that of their character.

4/19/2016

“And every crevice of her heart filled with absolutism and gold-cracks that healed. Now she had more space for Him, now her heart could love for His sake instead of loving with no break. The heart does such reckless spending.” 

-Sarah 

You Turned Her: Relief Poetry

 

  

 Italian artist, Silvia Peliserro 

I found peace in place that was anything but. I found peace in you when everything around us was anything

But,

You turned her into poetry.

She was thunder dancing on pages, legs splattered ink, nothing of her was completed

She kept going.

She settled when you settled, she gravitated to you, then stopped like rain on rocks, beating down, clear, ruthless, indestructible.

Poetry on pages and notes that you couldn’t read, or fix

Poetry in her walk, not lady like, not elegant, not tall and beautiful.

So destructive to herself.

It is only in our late night hours where alone becomes her companion. Closed in a loft somewhere

See, around her all you saw was concrete, you never looked up at the building you built you hid behind iridescent screen because that was your safe place.

She didn’t know what safe meant because she was being written on by others, she was getting paper cuts, she never complained.

Everyone told her story.

They shrugged in ignorance, when she asked of her fate in the following pages and of her end to the story

She decided on no more pasty legs, girl, no more sudden silence, what was wrong with you? He told you, you can speak, you used to be more defensive than this, you used to be more cunning than this,

I wrote you to be less. I wanted you to be more, I can’t ask you for more.

When someone says they’re sorry, believe them when they can’t say it anymore.

I’m sorry.
I’m sorry.

I can’t be sorry enough.

 

 

 -Sarah