We have completed the blessed month of Ramadan. Alhamdulillah, many of us have spent the month in the remembrance of Allah, doing good deeds and earning our rewards for the akhirah. But how can we benefit from Ramadan even when it has drawn to a close? Do we think of this month as a single window in the year where we live according to the principles of Islam, just to revisit the same learning a year down the track? Or do we consider it an opportunity to cultivate good habits that will benefit us both in this world and the next?
As in a conference or a retreat, we like to take away with us some salient points that have been the highlights in the time spent there- something we would benefit from most in our lives.
Here is a compilation of what we can continue to do after Ramadan in order to increase our rewards and good deeds in the rest of the year:
- Recitation of the Quran: Most of us increase our recitation of the holy Quran during Ramadan. Continuing it afterward keeps us connected to the words of Allah directly, guiding us to stay on the straight path.
- Salat: During Ramadan we are very conscious about praying on time and ensure we do not miss any Salat. Continue this habit after Ramadan as it is the best way to stay connected to the deen and is a restorative, meditative way to remain connected with our creator.
- Deeds: We increase our good deeds, like helping others and paying Zakah (compulsory) and Sadaqa (additional charity) during Ramadan. Aim to continue helping those less fortunate during the remaining year.
- Time-management: We manage our fasting, early morning Suhuur, work, study, prayer, meal preparation and commitments at the Masjid during Ramadan. Continue to organize your time productively so you can make time for the most important parts of your spiritual, personal and professional life.
- Healthy habits: Many bad habits like smoking, spending unproductive hours browsing the internet, backbiting, etc. are naturally removed during Ramadan. Be conscious of the tendency to reintroduce these habits once Ramadan is finished.
- Hunger and Thirst: In our society of plentiful food and beverage, it is easy to forget that constant hunger, thirst, starvation and malnourishment are the reality for millions of people around the world. Ramadan reminds us to be grateful for the bounties of Allah that He has blessed us with and also to spare what we can to alleviate the condition of those less fortunate. The experience of hunger and thirst is a prompt to us for to give to charity regularly, in addition to the compulsory Zakah.