Wednesday, September 3, 2014

The Cashewnut Orchard

Chapter 12

After lunch we drove a short distance to the mosque to offer the Zohor prayer. The adzan or call to  the prayer had just finished when we entered the most compound. We quickly walked into the mosque and took our ablution. At the prayer hall, the people were already standing in straight line call saf, physically and spiritually ready to begin the prayer.

Suddenly, the person standing on my right touched and shook my hand. I looked at him and it was Dr. Abdur Rahman.  I smiled back at him and the congregated prayer began.  Once the utterance of the expression of "Allahu akbar" was made, everyone will be engaged in one-to-one communication with the Creator. Because "Allahu akbar" means Allah is The Greatest, all other things are put aside.  The heart, mind and the body submit only to Him until the prayer ends.

"Alone?"  Dr. Abdur Rahman briskly asked as soon as the prayer ended.

"No. With relatives. And you are with this jamaah?" I asked in return, partially surprised at his ability to apportion his time towards calling people to Islam.

"Yes. It would be good for you to join us here after the Maghrib prayer today. We will be talking about the importance of having and nourishing our iman in our heart."  He spoke reassuringly of his conviction  to strengthen his belief and enjoin others to do the same. He said, his group were spending three day in the mosque to achieve the mission.

"I can't promise you that I can come back here this evening." I answered with a appropriately chosen words. "But if you are still here tomorrow evening I will make a point to come and join you here."

He smiled. "Insya Allah. Allah will give you strength and free you of hindrance."

I excused myself and he parted to join his group members who were sitting in a circle.

"He is a doctor in the hospital. He and his group are spending three days in this mosque to call peoplae to spread the word 'la ila ha illallah'", I explained to Mr Abdullah the people that I was talking to after the prayer.

Mr. Abdullah replied that similar group of people have also made visits to the surau in his village. He approved it for the reason that the number of village folks that come to the surau to perform the five daily prayers in congregation has increased.

When I was alone in my house that night, I spent some time to ponder of what have I contributed to my religion for the life that I have spent on this earth.

"We work hard day and night to achieve success and comfort for the short span of life on this earth. But we are all ignorant of the importance of the preparation that we have to make for our everlasting life in the hereafter." Dr. Abdul Rahman voice echoed several times in my ear while I was closing my eyes to begin my sleep for the night.

 But from the same eyes oozed out tears that I couldn't stop for a while. "Oh Allah, help me. Give me taufiq and hidayah so as I can come closer to You."