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July 28, 2005

A Request

It’s finally here–when school finished in April, I never really thought this day would come, it simply seemed like a distant event in the future with no relevance to the present. And now, Thursday evening, as I sit here and type this, the realization that it’s here and I cannot escape it has finally set in. Looking back at these past three months, I’ve tried to maintain my communal ties but I realize that I’ve missed out on a lot of things have happened here in the summer–necessity, being the cruel mother that she is, forced me into this self-imposed summertime hibernation. With that being said, I want to formally apologize to everyone whose phone calls I’ve not returned, all the emails I’ve not answered, etc.–essentially, I’m sorry for being more of a jerk than usual. I can only hope for your indulgence and understanding of the circumstances.

In 48 hours, Inshallah, I’ll be free. Looking back, I think I’ve fought the good fight; I’ve tried to tie my camel as best as I can, but ultimately, every single factoid I’ve learnt, every single letter I’ve read… has been only by the permission and decree of Allah. The angels knew it all along didn’t they, and thus they could only remark: “Glory be to You, we have no knowledge except for that which You teach us”? In the end then, my state is no different from where I was in the beginning: all the hours spent, all the books read, all the questions answered, were only possible because Allah had allowed for it. My insignificance in the grand cosmic order was apparent at the start of this journey, and it hasn’t changed now that I’m at the end. If anything, I’ve realized that I’m even more dependent on Allah than I could have ever possibly imagined.

This is where you come in. Given my utter dependence on Him, it’s an understatement of the highest order for me to say that I’m going to need His help on Saturday. Before I get to that, I think I should take this opportunity to fully explain something that I’ve hinted at time and time again on this xanga. When I started this xanga back in 2004, I wanted it to be a place wherein I could jot down my thoughts on various topics and hopefully impart some benefit to those who would wish to read my opinions. This is certainly apparent in some posts, but then there are those posts that have stirred up controversy (as Qadi `Iyadh writes in the Shifa, “and they were able to stir up the dung”) through some of my writings. Know then that even in these posts, I was merely taking a different angle to address certain issues that I felt would be best addressed in the given medium. Yes, they were funny (humor was chosen as a medium for specific reasons), but more importantly, I wanted such articles to be stimuli for thought about such issues and catalysts for sound-minded solutions to such problems.  One of my teachers once told me that what one does for people in this world is how God will repay him in the next world. With that in mind, in addition to the enlightenment and motivation that I’ve tried to offer, I specifically used humor, hoping that I would be able to bring a smile to people’s faces (especially given the depressing times that we live in) so that Allah would allow me to smile in the next world.  I’m not sure if I succeeded in that goal, but at least know that my intent was never to cause hurt to anyone on purpose. If I unintentionally have, I hope that the previous sentences explained my intent; regardless, I think now is as good as of a time as any to ask for your indulgence and earnestly desire your forgiveness.

During the year and half that I’ve had this xanga, apart from my occasional and shameless eprop fundraising, I’ve never really asked for much from my readers. When I first started this site, I never thought that I would be able to reach so many people–even now I joke that this xanga has become like a cancer, growing too big for its own good. Regardless, I am grateful to Allah that I’ve been given this opportunity to have my writings read by many, and I’m honored by the fact that people spend valuable minutes of their day to read what I have to say.

Today, however, in addition to asking for your forgiveness, I ask for your du’a to the only One who can help me in my time of need during Saturday’s exam. Given that tomorrow is the blessed day of Jumu`ah, I sincerely request that you make du’a for my step 1’s, especially at the actual time of the Jumu’ah prayer, and specifically during the period when the khateeb sits down between the two khutbahs. Inshallah, the barakah of your du`as will manifest themselves for eight hours this Saturday.

The following format is a suggested aid as to what to pray for on my behalf:

–Begin by praising and glorifying Allah; declare His Power, His Majesty, and Dominion over all things; declare His over-riding Mercy that encompasses all things.
–Send peace upon all of the Prophets (`alayhim al-salaam), with special prayer and salutations upon our Master, the Prophet Muhammad (salallahu `alayhi wa sallam)
–Ask for your own forgiveness, as well as the forgiveness of your family, the ummah, and myself
–Any Qur’anic du’as that you would like to make
–Any Prophetic du`as
–Du`a for yourself, your family and loved ones, and for the rest of the Muslims across the world, especially the ones who are going through much more difficult times than any of us can imagine
–That Allah gives me mental and spiritual peace and strength as I take the actual exam.
–That He preserves what I have studied so far and allow for it to benefit me during my time of need.
–That He grant me an opening from His openings and grant me the ability to distinguish the correct answers from the wrong ones
–That He allows me to “guess” correctly when I guess between several answer choices
–That He makes me among those who have achieved extremely well on this test and to let my score reflect that.
–Most importantly, that He makes me content with the outcome, and allows me to love Him and His Messenger in the way they deserved to be loved.
–End with again praising and glorifying Allah, and sending prayer upon the Prophet (salallahu `alayhi wa sallam).

May Allah grant you goodness in this world, but more importantly, may He grant you even greater than that in the next world.


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