Ramadan, Month of Mercy and Forgivness
Realistic Goals It is very important to set ourselves realizable goals and not to set our sights so high that we fail to achieve them.
For example, if we are not all that faithful to Prayer during the course of the year, it is unrealistic to expect that we will pray the five daily Prayers as well as Tarawih Prayers in the mosque and that we will get up during the last third of the night to pray as our Prophet did (peace and blessings be upon him). If we don't usually spend too much time reciting the Qur'an, it is unrealistic to expect that we can recite the whole of the Qur'an during Ramadan. In other words, be realistic in the goals you set yourself. One sure way we can all benefit from Ramadan is to give more. What do we mean by this? Well, we can give more of our time to Allah and to others; in so doing, we can understand and take to heart what Ramadan and Islam is all about. Ramadan is the month in the Islamic calendar when our holy Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) first received the revelation of the Qur'an from Jibril (Angel Gabriel). For the rest of the Prophet's life, Jibril visited him during Ramadan, and they recited the whole of the Qur'an together. In the last Ramadan before the Prophet died, they recited the whole of the Qur'an together twice. For our own part, then, we can spend at least some extra time during Ramadan reciting the Qur'an and studying its meaning. In giving up some of our time, we give time to Allah. The result, in sha' Allah, is that by the end of Ramadan, we will have come closer to Allah. For Muslims, Ramadan is also the special month of du`aa' (supplication). During the day, while we are fasting, we make prayers and invocations to Allah to remind us that it is for His sake that we fast. The Ramadan fast is neither a diet nor a punishment. We do it gladly for Allah's sake. Many Muslims try during Ramadan to attend the special Tarawih Prayers in the mosque every evening. By doing so, they will have heard the whole Qur'an recited during the month. Giving such time to Prayer, then, is another way of giving our time and our hearts to Allah.