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July 25, 2005


Guest Post #4


Now what series of guest posts would be complete without an entry from the Don himself, the original Godfather of Chicago, the Sultan of Slacking Off, Kazim “It’s A Freakin’ Shame and Tragedy That I’m Still Single But All You Girls Out There Don’t Deserve a Gem Like Me” Mohammed? With all these cats getting engaged and married recently, it’s an injustice of the highest order that this guy isn’t. Perhaps I’ll write a post about this later. Anyway, mashallah, the guy always churns out great stuff on his xanga, but he suggested I post this old post of his because I personally thought it was the best article that he ever wrote.


May Allah have mercy on my boy Hammoudi.


A Trip to Visit Hammoudi (originally written October 18, 2004)


I’ve been meaning to do it for a long time, but I finally got around to it this past Saturday. I took a trip with a friend (Imran) to go visit a dear departed friend, Hammoudi. It’s been about 4 months since Hammoudi passed away and I remember his burial pretty clearly. Ever since that day, I wanted to go back and visit.


There’s a Hadith is the Prophet (S) where He (S) tells the Sahabah that the heart is like iron and it rusts. The sahabahs asked how they could polish the heart and clean off the rust. The Prophet (S) replied by mentioning two things: Reading Qur’an and Remembering Death. I know that my heart is covered with rust and I know that its in bad shape. So I decided to take a trip to visit a friend and remind myself of the end which we call death.


As we drove to the cemetary, we were thinking about Ramadan (listening to the Friday khutbahs of UIC from the day before). When we got to the cemetary, we first noticed how empty it was…deserted (but not really). We read the dua of visiting the cemetary and recited some Qur’an. After we had finished, we started looking around the cemetary for other people that we knew.


As we continued walking around the cemetary, I saw a familiar name, a kid from the neighborhood who OD’d at the age of 16 and lives underground now. Then we saw Imran’s friend who was killed in a motorcycle accident at the age of 19. Then we saw the uncle of a friend who passed away in a car crash some years back.


I was reminded of an earlier time years ago when I went to the cemetary with my halaqah group. At that time, we didn’t go to visit anyone in particular, maybe just say Salaam to any of the people that we knew and to look around at all the people who were there. There was one thing which my halaqah leader pointed out that will stick with me for a long time. He asked us if we looked at the dates and we told him we had. He reminded us that some of the people who were buried in this cemetary were young (not even a day old) and some were extremely old (more than 90 years of life lived), but there was one thing that was constant on every headstone. That thing was a hyphen. A hyphen. He continued and said that some people lived very short lives and some lived very long ones, but at the end of the day, that whole life is represented by the hyphen on their tombstone in between the dates of when they lived and when they died. So much life contained in such a small symbol. It just goes to show how temporary and ephemeral our life is. We need to make the most out of that hyphen so that in the world of no hyphens, we’re in a better state than we are here. 


May Allah (SWT) have mercy upon the inhabitants of that cemetary, particularly our friend Hammoudi and may He let us to attain His mercy in this month of mercy which we call Ramadan. Ameen.



 

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17 Comments
  1. ::fist in the air::

  2. ameen. theres a poem on a hyphen…and it talks about the representation of life – pretty deep if u ask me.

  3. Anonymous permalink

    pathetic hyphen, i am. current hyphen status: ~
    good post mashallah.

  4. Anonymous permalink

    one of my favorite posts by far. random question: are women allowed to go to the graveyard?

  5. in short: according to the Hanafi school, yes women are indeed allowed to visit graves provided certain conditions are met.
    if you go to sunnipath.com, go to the Q/A section and search for “women visiting graves” for a more detailed and scholarly answer by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

  6. Anonymous permalink

    Ameen…
    mad respect…
    nigger-ul-haq

  7. nice reflection, masha’allah. ameen.

  8. kazim man u are three studs and a half. mA. that was excellent. -IJB

  9. Masha Allah…well written….
    Death….where is thy long awaited sweet sting?…sigh…..

  10. salam3laykum wa rahmatullah
    ameen…
    i was checking out the other posts..
    When we misbehaved, were rude, spiteful, or didn’t follow the rules, we were caned, detained, and reprimanded. We didn’t go home and tell our parents what happened because we knew we’d get walloped again. <haha so trueWe had three meals a day and we ate what was put in front of us. No choices. You ate what you were given and you ate it all…..”There were children starving around the world.” <yup. eat whats given to u…or don’t eat. =)
    and Abdul Basit… (i guess thats his name?)…my dad has a cassette with him on it..and he listened to it all the time.. (hmm i wonder what happend to that tape..) ah..memories..
    anyway take care.

  11. Anonymous permalink

    Ameen.
     
    Speechless

  12. Anonymous permalink

    ameen.

  13. Subhanallah.

  14. i like that hyphen analogy; it’s very profound.  may Allah accept the du’a.

  15. Anonymous permalink

    Yeah…that hyphen analogy is great.  Aameen.

  16. you also have a bnice site…

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