Are we ready to look in the mirror?
"Allah loves those who place their trust in Him." - Qur'an (3:159)
Last week we reflected upon the Hajj and overcoming negative thoughts. This week we take a closer look at perhaps the most powerful of tales from the Hajj backstory - the call to sacrifice Prophet Ismail.
We're all familiar with the vividly portrayed qur'anic story of Prophet Ibrahim facing the ultimate test of faith by being instructed to sacrifice his son. His acceptance of the divine decree coupled with Prophet Ismail's readiness to obey provide two standout examples of reliance upon Allah - tawakkul - in action.
The Hajj serves to strip away the ego and attachments and awakens the heart. Prophet Ibrahim's test was a manifestation of this: to relinquish attachment to everything he held dear other than Allah.
We too have the opportunity to use this blessed time in the holy month of Dhul Hijjah to introspect and examine our own attachments.
There's a Prophetic narration that encourages us to both tie our camel - do our bit - and to trust in Allah. Balancing this equation in our own lives takes reflection and honesty.
One of the concluding acts of the Hajj is the tawaf or circumambulation of the Kaaba. We mirror the movement of electrons around an atom, the moon around the earth and the planets around the sun. We move anti-clockwise around the metaphorical House of God, our heart aligned to the axis of our lives - Allah.
We're surrounded by thousands of others amidst the hustle and bustle and yet we're encouraged to focus our attention inwards too. It's a magnified, intense snapshot of life itself - we can get caught up in the daily and lose focus on Divinity.
So how do we make our lives more God-centric to nurture tawakkul?
These 3 key practices help us keep Allah's loving presence front and centre of our consciousness and encourage us trust in His wisdom and mercy.
"…But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah Knows, while you know not." (Qur'an 2:2216)