Anyone close to me would know how much I love the holy month of Ramadhan. For others, this month represents bazaar feasts of traditional food and cakes, of breakfast invitations, of charity, of shopping for new Raya clothes. For me, it is a month of contemplation, introspection, self-assessment and evaluation, taming of the lowly desires and progression of the soul.
I may have had the privilege of experiencing Ramadhan for 44 times already. However, I only began appreciating it in too few a times. And each time it arrives, my anticipation and expectation grows with the number of gray hair sprouting out on my crowning glory. Given, it is easier to achieve peace of mind when we are left on our own devise without the temptations and seductive whispers of iblis. But then again, not every day is Ramadhan and Ramadhan does not last the whole of our lives. For as long as we breathe, we will desire. And for as long as we desire, peace of mind is far from reach until the object of our desire is attained. Even that is no guarantee. Such is the nature of desire and avarice.
I came across a quote from an old favorite book of mine entitled Essential Sufism and decided that it describes perfectly the emotions I am experiencing at this moment in time:
"At the beginning I was mistaken in four aspects. I sought to remember God, to know Him, to love Him, and to seek Him. When I had come to the end, I saw that He had remembered me before I remembered Him, that His Knowledge of me had preceded my knowledge of Him, His love toward me had existed before my love to Him, and He had sought me before I sought Him."
- Bayazid Bistami
And I lie to myself everyday, believing I have done enough... Yet, He thinks me as worthy of His love and mercy... There's no bigger blessing than that. Somehow, I feel my utter gratitude is like an insult. I bow in humility. I bow in submission. I bow. I surrender.