We sat in class. Deliberating over our Hidayah Volume One. The beautiful, green, hard cover Maktab-e-Bushra edition that we have. We scribbled notes till we got to Baab-e-Janaaiz. And our pens kept up as we heard and read about the masnoon things to do when someone is dying in front of you. When it is time for a soul to leave a body.
You don’t ask a dying person to recite the kalima, Mufti Sahab told us; you respect the condition and pain, and you recite it yourself, and if Allah wills he will recite it before his soul departs the world.
And it made us think of our own death, and whether we will have the amaal and the toufeeq to have the kalimah on our tongues when the time comes for us to leave. And we moved on to the masnoon tareeqa of ghusal and burial, more silent and reflective than usual. And amidst our reflection came the announcement of the plane crash with no survivors. Not one. And we were reminded of those 127 souls who departed, just like that. Because Allah (swt) willed it. We were reminded of their inevitable return. And ours.
Inna lillahi wa inna alai raji’oon we thought. And we tried to feel it too.
And it’s easy to think it and say it, and type it out, but harder to remember it and retain it and make it a living reality. To Him we belong and to Him we will return. It’s the most undeniable fact of life. But we forget. We forget that our soul, like our body was not created from the most fundamental tura’ab of this dunya. That unlike the body, it cannot be sustained by world, and what it has to offer. That it can never be nourished by what springs from this mitti. Nor will it, like the body, be returned to dust. That its source of origin is the same as its source of nourishment. And so is its point of return.
So we wondered, that when it is time for our soul to rush back to its point of origin, how much our hearts will resist? And how much our bodies will struggle; satiated by the dunya and all it contains. Invested; emotionally, materially, thoroughly. How will we ever want to return? We shuddered.
And as our goosebumps subsided some of us lingered in our thoughts as Mufti Sahab called it a day with ‘waqtafi bi hazal qadri’. We fear our time, but more than that we wear the halat of our emaan when it comes. Who knows what the condition of our hearts will be; our zaahir and batin? So we turn to our beloved Mishkaat and the words of our beloved Prophet (saw) who said just three days before it was his time to go ‘Let none amongst you die except hoping for the best from Allah’ And we were told, that for a true momin it would mean spending his life in fear of displeasing his Lord but when death drew near, he would be overpowered with a sense of hope from Allah (swt). And we could not but pray, to be able spend our lives in this khauf. And hope to be brimming with khashiat when the time comes for our inevitable return.