Inspiration for last 10 nights of Ramadan

June 18, 3.00 am Saudi Time

Beggars are a common sight in Makkah, in the back alleys, suqs and wherever a crowd gathers. In addition, the streets are littered with women who have setup shop on the bare ground itself, selling anything from novelty items to sandals and abayas. Close to the haram, expectedly, the concentration of the beggars grows, consisting of women and children.

Surprisingly, or perhaps not, most of them sleep on the streets, in groups with their bundles of belongings serving as a pillow case. It’s not hard for initial sentiments of mercy and pity to turn into an almost revulsion, bordering on abhorrence. Feelings of pride also begin to creep in and an air of superiority manages to find a home when you least expect it.

Our daily routine was to wake up half an hour before fajr and head to the Kabah to pray tahajjud followed by fajr. After taking in the cool morning breeze and lying on the richly decorated carpets no more than 30-40 metres from the Kabah, we’d stay around till the afternoon prayer, often exploring the palace like halls in amazement and awe. After a quick meal we’d come back to offer the Asr prayer and enjoy the silky smooth wind that blew before Maghrib prayer and stay till sunlight pierced darkness.

One morning, we headed off towards the Kabah as usual. A massive staircase on the right hand side of our path led us to the back alley that was our route. Makkah is built on a mountain with jagged rocks sticking out in between houses and a steep vertical climb with every step. It was the last third of the night, a time of extreme importance for those who realize. As we were climbing down the stairs, I noticed a group of women and children, the street beggars and vendors, asleep in a corner of the passageway.

What I saw next was probably one of the defining moments: not far was a homeless woman standing in the last third of the night, shoulders wide, arms on her sides, facing the Kabah, and her sheet which had just served as the bed, now being used as a prayer rug to offer the Tahajjud prayer while the more wealthy and cultured slept soundly in their soft beds.


8 thoughts on “Inspiration for last 10 nights of Ramadan”

  1. @Kashif
    The Prophet(pbuh) said a strong believer is better than a weak believer. The word strong here doesn’t just imply physical strength but also financial muscle.

    A rich pious Muslim can do everything a poor Muslim can AND spend in the way of Allah(swt). May Allah(swt) grant us more people of such calibre. Ameen.

  2. Wonderfully refreshing article. What you watched was one prized moment and I fully endorse the saying for poor being admitted in Janah before rich. Nonetheless we should not forget about the rich who are also pious and work hard to make things better in and around our cities and towns from their charity etc. I don’t know sometimes I feel the world has its sweethearts as in the poor are always innocent and so are women completely neglecting the others.

    @ Shakir sb. I understand what you mean. People have found affiliations with regional Sufis more then Allah SWT that’s why they act as if they have gone to meet a stranger in Mecca and back home they have someone who knows this stranger equally well as he knows them thus the intermediary. Of course it wrong but it’s also a fact, an adherence, innocence and a blunder in the most revered form. May Allah SWT bless us, guide us and make us steady in the true path. Ameen

  3. True.

    In ‘Ibaadah a person forgets their pain and sorrow. Taqwa and Imaan make a person stronger. The story of Aasiya (r.a.) is one such example. Whn the aim is to seek Allah’s Face and the blessing of the Hereafter, the difficulties of this life seem nothing, masha’Alalh.

    May Allah SWT strengthen our Imaan, ameen thum ameen!

  4. It moved me on how she didn’t really have ‘much’ to be thankful from a materialistic point of view — two pieces of cloth. Yet, she would stand bare feet in the middle of the night praying to her Lord.

    The poor will get into jannah before others because their reckoning will be shorter. They have less to answer for.

  5. You find many Pakistanis who’re there illegally, begging for money. One sick Pakistani who had not been able to perform Umrah (for which he had gone there) even phoned his brother in Lahore and asked him to feed fifty beggars at the shrine of Data Darbar in Lahore to compensate for him not performing Umrah!

  6. SubhaanAllah! A truly inspiring narration. Apparently, or in terms of this material world, the one with better quality of clothes and loads of money is much richer (devoid of the Presence of His Creator) than a beggar. In reality, the one who is known as a beggar is truly wealthy with the richness of Imaan and Taqwa.

    Without a doubt, our true wealth is our Imaan.

    Ma sha’Allah, a very thought-provoking post!

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