How Nouman Ali Khan Spends His Ramadan – NAK
To me personally my thoughts on Ramadan are inspired by the only passage in the Quran that deals with the subject. A little pass the middle of suratul Baqarah, Allah talks about the function, the purpose of Ramadan and what I find probably the most inspiring in that passage.
First and foremost is that Allah did not describe this month as the month of fasting or nor did He described it as the month of prayer. First and foremost He described it as the month in which the Quran itself was revealed. When He described the Quran, He described it in a way as though He was first introducing the Quran, as though it’s never been introduced before.
And this is a madani surah in which means the Muslims have been receiving Quran through the Prophet shallallahu alaihi wa sallam for well over a decade now. Yet Allah says, “Hudal lin-naas, wa bayyinatin minal-hudaa wal-furqoon.” (QS Al Baqarah verse 185)
As though it’s like Allah is telling us what the Quran is for the first time. So what that teaches me at least, and I hope other Muslims too, is that you have to renew your relationships with this book, almost as though you’ve never knew it before, and you’ve to come at it anew.
So it’s a month of rejuvenating your experience with the Quran, so you can experience it like that first generation was taught to experience it all over again. That’s the first and foremost thing, like this month should be the celebration of revelation itself. That’s what it should be.
So I study Quran through out the year, but I turn it up a few notches, in the month of Ramadan my memorization goes up. I haven’t finished memorizing the Quran, I’m working on it part time, slowly but surely, but it goes on in accelerator in the month of Ramadan.
I try to catch i’tikaf every year, in i’tikaf I do a lot of review of Quran. Actually the act of memorizing Quran is not just the act of memorization but actually when you recite the ayat over and over again, it gives you a chance to reflect on the word of Allah too, and to think about the same thing over and over again, and it brings about opportunities for insights, which I really really enjoyed.
The other thing I really enjoy doing during Ramadan is the the nightly Tarawih prayers. But I will be honest with you, I don’t… a lot of time I wont join the entire Tarawih prayer or I’ll go to a masjid which actually takes it easier.
‘Cause some masaajid unfortunately their big goal is to finish the recitation of the entire Quran and they rush through the recitation. And there are other masaajid alhamdulillah in our area, there are some that actually take it easy; the wont recite a lot, but what they recite they really enjoy reciting.
This month should not be about quantity, it should be about quality. There is no religious guideline that you have to finish the entire Quran, there’s no such thing. There was an imposed, we imposed on ourselves. You find people that they pray the eight rakaat, and there’s a mad rush outside the masjid.
“I got it over with, let me get out of here…”
But actually prayer is supposed to be this reflective, spiritual experience where you are enjoying the word of Allah in every raka’ah, and that’s really something I hope to restore every year for myself in Ramadan, and I hope other people do too.
A lot of people might know I’m a very public figure, and so Ramadan is probably the most private time I have. So a lot of the activities that I do for the community and public speaking, I cut all that out. I don’t travel, I don’t speak, I try not to do anything in Ramadan. I have a life more for myself. Especially the evenings are more for myself.
So if I do do something, it’s during the day, I’ll teach a course or something like that, just to feel like I’m still doing something. And it will be like a limited attendance, instead of doing a program for 1000 people or 500 people, it will be like 20 or 30 people or something, and do it in a limited capacity, just so I’m still forcing myself to do something beyond just myself.
But I do think that Muslims should balance the scale, should tip more towards what you want to do for yourself to become a better person, and instilling better habits in this month.
And yes if you have time to do other productive things for your community, be engaged, etc. that’s great, but… really this is the month for self improvement, really this is how we should look at it.
First of all it’s gonna be easy, it’s a month of celebrating Quran, and then, “Ujiibu da’watad-daa’i idzaa da’aan, falyastajiibuu lii.” (QS Al Baqarah verse 186)
What you should personally be doing is turning to Allah more. So, I asked myself like… Honestly the way I spend any given day, not Ramadan, but any given day. What could I have been doing better? What opportunity that I’ve missed? Did I wake up too late? Did I rush through the prayer? Did I have breakfast on time? Did I get enough time to exercise, etc?
A good balanced day, if you can create balance in a day, then you can replicate that the rest of your life, and that means a good life.
So to me a good day actually translates into a good life. And a not productive day translates into a non productive life. ‘Cause really at the end of the day, we recycle our days. A lot of days they go by, a week goes by and it feels like it was just a day, ’cause it’s all the same over and over again.
So if you instill certain habits on a daily basis, and this is the time to do it, shaytan’s chained up, the “waswasa” is gone, everybody around you is motivated. Allah is given special ease to you, empowered you in ways that you wouldn’t be empowered before.
So it’s a time to instill good spiritual habits, good personal habits, good eating habits. Eat healthy. Don’t eat oily stuff for iftar. Don’t eat greasy stuff for suhur, cut that stuff down.
Get into a better shape, unfortunately there are statistics in Muslim countries, some Muslims gained the most weight in the month of Ramadan, which is like… I can’t fathom it, I can’t understand it.
So for me personally that’s what it’s actually, essentially, and fundamentally about.
Subtitle: NAK Indonesia
Indonesian Transcript: https://nakindonesia.wordpress.com/2018/05/17/bagaimana-nouman-ali-khan-menjalani-ramadan