Visiting The Blessed

BismiLlahir Rahmanir Raheem

AlhamduliLlahi Rabil 'alameen was-salaatu was-salaamu 'ala Al Habib, Al Mustafa, Sayyidina Muhammad, Imam Al Mursaleen

The rhythm of the drums fill my ears, it moves my soul taking me back to a place that now owns a special place deep in my heart -- Al Yemen, Al Habibah. Her hospitality remains with me, her generosity humbles me, and the memory of her beauty makes me smile.

Words of the heart are often difficult to articulate. I've struggled endlessly to find the words to share one of the sweetest moments of my life. I cannot count the amount of times I've typed the basmala only to have no words follow. How can I ever attempt to describe something so sweet, so ... ya Rabb. It was a dream come true. By the permission of my Lord, it was a dream come true. I'm ever-grateful for it, glory be to God. I thank Him, the Only One deserving of praise, for all that He has bestowed on me, He who made a desire of my heart a reality.


The wind was howling, and I roused from my sleep to pull the top layer of my sleeping bag securely over me again. My eyes opened for a moment, and I smiled as I recalled where I lay. The moon adorned all her jewels pleasing the night sky, her light touching and illuminating the peaks of the surrounding mountains. The stars twinkled back at me, and I closed my eyes again. With my heart at peace, I fell back into a light slumber.

It must have been about an hour and a half later when I woke again. I pulled out my cell phone which I kept tucked close to me under the edge of my pillow and checked the time. Ah, 3:15 am, it was time for qiyamul layl. I looked to the moon again, smiled, and rose. My flashlight wasn't with me that night as I lent it to one of my housemates the evening before and she hadn't yet returned it. I would have to tread slowly to find my way. I found my shoes, and carefully made my way around my sleeping companions to the stairs leading from the roof that we slept on to the second floor. I entered the house and saw a faint light somewhere that made the path manageable. The electricity must have come back on during some part of the night or maybe the generator was running again. There were a few of my housemates awake, but today I was amongst the earlier ones which worked to my advantage in terms of getting access to water for wudhu. I safely made my way down both sets of concrete, dust-covered stairs and saw a couple of girls filling buckets with water to use in the bathrooms or to use for wudhu. We had no running water in the house and all 150 of us depended on buckets of water for cleansing.

I continued walking until I reached the front door of the house. Much to my surprise and good pleasure, sitting in the dusty entry way, lit by the moon's brilliance, was a barrel of water unattended. I quickly made my way to it, washed up, and made wudhu in preparation for prayer.

I returned to the roof again, prayed two raka'as of tahajjud, and sat facing the qibla as I began reading the pre-fajr awrad (litanies of dhikr) from my copy of the Khulasa. This was the practice of all those in Tarim and the surrounding areas. The Khulasa is a book that contains the awrad from morning to evening, and is as essential in the hand (if not in the heart) as the blood that flows within us. I couldn't imagine a Tarimi without it, thus my participation in the society naturally meant the same for me. As one British sister said to me shortly before my departure, "If you want to take something of Tarim back to your family and friends, take the Khulasa."

With the help of the moon's radiance, I read through the pre-Fajr awrad, trying my best to let its reading go deeper than my tongue, reminding myself that I was somewhere special. It was a blessing to be there, and I didn't want to take it for granted. I wasn't sure how to make the most of my opportunity there, but I tried. Just as I finished and wondered how much time remained before Fajr, the rest of my housemates were rising. I realized then that I had woken up much too early for qiyam ul layl, and my completion of the awrad marked the usual time for waking. I decided to make the most of my time and walked to the edge of the roof, surrounded by a wall, and gazed at one of the most heart-moving scenes my eyes have ever met. It was the dome (quba) that covered the resting place of a beloved Prophet of God, Nabi Allah Hud ('alayhis salaam) - Prophet Hud (peace be upon him). The moon illuminated the dome and its surrounding area, and tranquility filled the air. It was heavenly.

It was more amazing than I could have imagined. No doubt, a blessing. I stood on the roof of a house that was half way up a mountain, glowing in the moon's radiance, and I overlooked the place where a Prophet lay. It is said that where one Prophet is buried, the others are present. The outward intention of this journey is to visit Prophet Hud 'alayhis salaam and the inward intention is to visit Prophet Muhammad salla Allahu 'alayhi wa salam.

The houses surrounding the mountain were empty. Apart from the house I inhabited, the village was vacant. A full moon, breathtaking mountains, and a blessed land. Pure bliss. Peace at its best.

Thank You Allah. Ya Rabbi, usalukal hidaya. Ihdinas siratal mustaqeem, ameen.


I wanted to continue describing the tarteeb (schedule) of the visit to Nabi Allah Hud 'alayhis salaam, but my words have run dry. There is actually a video (produced by Guidance Media, Allahu uwafiqquhum, ameen) that does a far better job than my incoherent words could ever do. It brings me to tears every time I watch it, but it also fills my heart with immense joy. I love that place. I used to watch this video before I had any 'chance' of going to Yemen. SubhanAllah. It means so much more to me now. I hope you can all share in the beauty of it too. As well, here are some pictures that I took while there. Perhaps one of these days, by the permission of my Lord, I'll be able to describe them to you. If not, I hope you meet someone far more competent than myself to tell you more about it.

Enjoy the video and pray for our shuyukh, for the students of knowledge who will one day be our teachers insha'Allah, and pray for our ummah.

Rajab has arrived. It is well past time to get into gear to meet Ramadhan, insha'Allah! May Allah make us among those who are honoured to meet Ramadhan this year. May He forgive our sins and accept our good works, those which we are only able to carry out by His permission, ameen!

Part 1 - Part 2
The Thousand Year Journey

No comments:

"Do you think that you will enter the Paradise without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you? They encountered suffering and adversity and were so shaken in spirit that even the Apostle and those of faith who were with him cried: 'When (will come) the help of God?' Ah! Verily the help of God is (always) near!" [2:214]



Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner


"Be mindful of God, and God will protect you. Be mindful of God, and you will find Him in front of you. If you ask, ask of God. If you seek help, seek help of God. Know that if the whole world were to gather together to benefit you with anything, it would benefit you only with something that God had already prescribed for you. And if the whole world were to gather together to harm you, it would harm you only with something that God has already prescribed for you. The pens have been lifted and the ink has dried."
--Prophet Muhammad [peace be upon him]