We are thanking our Lord Allah (swt) for giving us these holy days, for making us to reach to these holy days and insha’Allah ar-Rahman we will complete them successfully and receive the blessings that are coming with it.
Ramazan is coming with its own secrets. Every month has their secrets. But the Holy month of Ramazan is blessed and in this month, Rahmat and Barakat is raining down from the Heavens for those who are looking to receive. If a man is not making any difference then he is not going to see it. He is still going to be in his own world, his own problems and miseries until the end comes to him.
You must wake up. We are entering the month of Ramazan. You must wake up. You must not fast only from eating, drinking and sexual actions. No. Animals do that too. That’s only the animal self who is fasting. Man’s animal body is fasting then. Eating, drinking and sex. There is an animal sitting over there. It’s not having any sex and if you don’t give it food and water then it’s not going to drink and eat. We must make it better than that. We are humans. We must make intention and correct our intention. Not only hearing these words now and saying, “Yes, yes, yes” to yourselves and five minutes later forgetting about it.
The holy month of Ramazan is a blessing. It is a blessing to the believers. Yes, it is a curse to the unbelievers, separating, separating between believers and unbelievers.
Allah subhana wa ta’ala’s Holy Prophet (sws) is saying to us, “The beginning of the month is Rahmat, the middle of the month is Maghfirat and the end of the month is escaping, opening door and escaping from Jahannam, safety from Jahannam.”
The month of Ramazan is for this Ummat and the mercy, Rahmat, everything, safety is reaching to people in this month. InshaAllah we are making intention to keep this month holy. The month is holy but we should keep it holy, we should treat it holy. And we will be having the iftar here and the tarawih here inshaAllah ar-Rahman and during this month more of Zikir, more of reading, more of things that you left behind, try to keep it, you will be extra blessed.
If making intention at least to have one Juz of Quran everyday, it is an extra blessing to us, every one of us, to our children, to the passed ones and inshaAllah ar-Rahman we are asking safety for the sake of this month from our Lord Allah subhana wa ta’ala.
What else is man looking for?
Firstly, man has to know what he is looking for. What are you looking for? Are you looking for Mawla or are you looking for Dunya? Are you looking for Allah subhana wa ta’ala or are you looking to satisfy your ego?
Anybody who is running to satisfy their ego, ohh in this month they are running top-speed more, saying, “No!” Ego is saying, “Run more, run because the little bit of respect that you are going to show to this month, don’t do that too. So completely you will be with me.”
Allah subhana wa ta’ala sent us to this world and He is saying to us, `Either you choose the hard way or you choose the easy way.’
There are two ways. If you choose the hard way it’s not for you. You are going to suffer a lot. If you choose the easy way, the easy way is obedience. Through obedience you are going to find everything coming easy to you. Through disobedience everything is going to be hard. The more disobedient, the harder it’s going to come to you. The more disobedient, the harder it’s going to happen. If you didn’t find, if you didn’t catch that in Dunya, don’t think that you are going to get it in the grave.
Whatever you prepared in this world now, that’s what you are going to find in the grave. If you show the proper respect during this month of Ramazan, if you die during this year, you are going to find the blessing of Ramazan in the grave for you. If you didn’t, then you are going to find extra punishment for you for the Ramazan.
Allah subhana wa ta’ala has created us, He has given us this life, He is giving us the breath of life continuously, from water to air to food, anything and everything is coming from Him. All He is asking from us is saying, “Be a thankful servant.” And being a thankful servant is, during these times you do this and during these times you do that. One month Ramazan is for you. Keep your engines shut down. Otherwise you are going to burn it. For one month clean yourselves. Come out from that heedless station. Become awakening individuals.
Eh, everything is for us again, not for Allah subhana wa ta’ala. And He is giving us all this treatments and He is saying to us that on top of it He is going to reward us for it.
But now, today’s squareheads are not running to do them because it’s Allah’s order but are running to say, “Ah, how much reward am I getting for this?”
Are you asking how much punishment you are getting for things that you are not doing?
Ask that. Firstly, that is important, the most important. How much punishment am I going to get when I am coming late to prayers. Something to think about now. Yes.
“Oh, as I like I go.”
“I couldn’t make it.”
That’s right. As you like. But Allah is saying that it’s obligation to make it in Jamat. To go on time is Allah’s order. Not your time. So when it comes to that they are not asking. They are only asking, “How much reward am I getting.” First you have to ask me that part and later this. Then I give you both sides.
Ramazan is the month that people must pull themselves together. They must put themselves together, they must sit and think what they are doing and why they are doing. `What is the purpose of the actions that I am doing? With this are Allah and His Prophet (sws) going to be happy with me? Or Allah and His Prophet (sws) are not going to be happy with me?’
That’s the biggest Ghaflat today that mankind is not asking. It’s not looking, it’s not running and it’s only running to do what their ego says.
Firaun, from seven years old to seventy years old, from males to females, Firauns, became Firauns. Firauns are tyrants, yes, and Allah subhana wa ta’ala with all these prophets, 124,000 prophets that He is sending to mankind, He is saying, `I have forbidden tyranny to myself and I am forbidding tyranny to you also. I am forbidding tyranny to you to do it to each other.’
This is what the 21st Century people are good for, non-stop. They are sitting next to each other but they are tyrants to each other. If you are not getting off from that then the end of that road is Jahannam. Not fasting one month, fast all your life, if the fasting is not making you to become a better servant then it’s just like an animal that you are tying it on the corner and you are not giving it food.
You have to learn to analyze before you do things to understand why you are doing and what is the intention behind. The most important thing, the intention.
Before you open your mouth you must think, you must know, you must understand, `Where is this word going to reach in the end? What kind of damage is it going to do?’
Before you do any action you must think, you must analyze, you must understand, `Where is the end of this action going to lead me?’
Later, `Oh, I have this problem and I have that problem.’
Your problem never ends. It is impossible. It is in your hand to try to do something. When you start correcting yourself, everything around you will be correct. Today’s people are trying to correct the other ones. Don’t! Correct yourself because everyone became Firauns.
Namruds and Firauns had some power in their hand, at least worldly power. Today’s people have no power, nothing. And non-stop twenty-four hours a day.
So, what’s the job of the prophets?
To teach mankind how to control their ego.
The Holy Prophet (sws) is coming from a war one day. He came to his masjid, he sat and the Sahaba-e Kiram came and they sat. He said to them, `Now we are turning from the small Jihad to a greater Jihad, to the bigger Jihad, from a small war to a bigger war.’
They said, `Ya Rasulullah, we are just coming from war, so many Sahaba died, so many are wounded, so much wealth disappeared. Can there be a bigger war than this?’
He said, `Yes. The war that you are going to make against your ego, against your Nafs, that is the biggest Jihad that you are going to make.’
And that Jihad must continue until you enter to the grave. You cannot let it go. You cannot say, `Oh, today I fixed myself, my ego is complete, so I’m going to do as I like.’
You cannot do as you like. The more you are completing your ego the more you are going to see Allah’s order more detailed to you. You watch every word that you say, you watch every step you make.
Holy Prophet (sws) is saying, `The fasting of Ramazan is a shield between you and Jahannam.’
Allah swt is saying, ‘And during one year time, keep yourselves away from eating and drinking in the month of Ramazan. Fix your body, adjust your body, tune up your body.”
In the language of today’s peoples’ understanding, if you are using a car, you are bringing it to the mechanic every three months. Every three thousand miles you are changing the oil and checking it up. Check up for your body, for that physical form is necessary too.
“Fast. Fast during the month of Ramazan. I will send more blessings, more Rahmat, more energy, more power and more beauty to your body. And there are other people looking. I am giving you wealth where there are other peoples’ rights in it. Look after them. Take care of them. Give them their rights.’
Holy Prophet (sws) is saying, “During the Ramazan time the doors of hell will be closed. The doors of Paradise will be opened. The Sheytans will be put in chains and one announcer will be saying, `Where are those people who want to do good deeds? We will count endless rewards for them. And those who want to do bad deeds have no place.'”
Understand the meaning now. Allah swt is saying, “Now you have no place on earth or anywhere.” Severe punishment is coming to that one who is not taking Allah’s orders seriously.
From the first man Adam (as), first prophet, up till the last prophet, our prophet Muhammad (sws), Allah subhana wa ta’ala has ordered fasting to the whole mankind, from the Children of Adam (as) coming down. Almost every religion after a while put that aside saying, “It’s too difficult. It’s too hard.”
We must keep it holy. Allah swt is giving this month to the believers saying, “This is for you. Your month. It’s resting time for you. Resting from eating, drinking, running and foolish activities. Put that aside.”
You are reaching to this month and if you keep the fasting properly then you will be reaching to the level of angels. Very little eating. You are keeping the control of your ego in your hand, wanting to eat and drink but you are saying, “No!”
And Allah swt is saying to us, “You may reach higher than the angels” because the angels are not given that desire but the man has it. When the man is given that and he is trying to keep himself only because it’s the order of Allah swt and it’s not because you are stuck somewhere and you are not eating and drinking. That’s not counted for fasting. That’s why it’s also important to make the intention. Without the intention you are not getting that much.
Of course, because the whole month is obligation to the believers, if they do the intention one day when they are getting up for Sahur to eat a little bit, that’s considered as intention because it’s obligation to us to keep this month.
During this month, every day, the whole month of Ramazan we must be fasting.
Congratulations to those who are making the intention and keeping it. Sadness is coming to those who are not keeping that month, who are not keeping the fasting.
Why are you not fasting?
Do you have any excuse?
Not the excuse that your ego says, the excuse that Allah and His Prophet (sws) is saying. If you are fitting to one of those categories then you should not fast. But if not… “Ah, I couldn’t. My stomach was bubbling.” Or, “My stomach was speaking to me. So I needed to drink some water.”
Holy Prophet (sws) is saying, “Take a glass of poison and drink. It’s better for you.” During the month of Ramazan anyone who is eating and drinking, it is better for them to drink glasses of poison all the time because during that year there must be some punishment coming to them. If it’s not that year then down in the road. Until they go out from this world they have to pay for it.
Out of this world, worse is waiting. They are going to bring fireballs to them in the grave. Fireballs. The angels will say, “Take this and eat. This is when you were eating in the Ramazan time, and drinking.”
So this is very serious for believers, for those who believe in Allah, His Prophet (sws) and in the Judgment Day.
For those who have no intelligence up there and they are saying, “Eh, I don’t hold the fasting. What happens?”
Check yourself. Before the year ends, before Ramazan, before the next Ramazan is coming, you are running to doctors. That’s early warning to you, coming. You go to a doctor, you are screaming and your voice is being heard all the way to Sidrat-ul Muntaha. But they are not giving any cure to you.
“My stomach! Ah! I have stomach pain!”
Must be. No cure to that one. Understand that that one is eating in Ramazan. In the Ramazan time he is chewing. Hmm. You are chewing in Ramazan time what Allah subhana wa ta’ala is giving as Riziq to you.
What will you do if He stops it? Nothing comes out? What will you do then?
By force, you are going to start fasting?
No. By force you are not a believer. If it was by force then no need for you to be in this world. Allah swt is testing us through will. He has given us a will power and He has given us the orders, do’s and don’t’s and He left us between these saying, “Choose whichever side you like. I have set some timing to you. During that time you are going to live in this world and after that you are going out from this world. Whatever you did during that time, do’s and don’t’s, whatever I have ordered to you, if you kept it holy and high, and whatever I have forbidden you from, if you stopped from it then expect and prepare yourself for a better life. If you didn’t keep this and you are just being arrogant to your own self, tyrant to your own self, then you are already making punishment to your own self. Nobody is punishing you.”
So Allah subhana wa ta’ala is separating us from the angels and from the animals. He created us between these two creatures. He has given us freewill and He has given us an intelligence to think. He has sent books to us and He has sent prophets to us to give us the warnings and to give us the good news. If you want better life for our own selves in this Dunya and Akhirat then you must run to keep the orders of Allah subhana wa ta’ala strongly and holy.
Don’t say, “I cannot.” Yes, you can. If Allah is saying, “You can”, then you can.
But your ego never wants to give up. Your ego is always saying, “Yes, you cannot.”
The animals, tie them over there. If you don’t give them food, one day, two days they are screaming and then they stop. They are waiting. If you give them then they eat. If you don’t give them then they wait. They have no choice.
Allah subhana wa ta’ala could have done the same thing to us. He didn’t. He left us alone in this world and He said to us, “That is an honor to you. I am giving the highest station to man. I have created you in Ahsani Taqweem and I am giving you freewill. With that freewill you are choosing. You are choosing where you want to go. I have prepared Paradise for you. My wish, My will, My desire for you is to enter to that Paradise. But if you are running away from that Paradise then I have prepared the fire. You are running into that fire.
If we take these words, it’s for you and for me, for every believer. No believer can escape from these words. These are the words coming from the Holy Book of Quran and through the Holy Prophet (sws). If we take it seriously then we will win Dunya and Akhirat. If we don’t then we will lose Dunya and Akhirat. Believers are those who keep their promise to Allah subhana wa ta’ala and they are being patient always until the angel of death will reach to them.
Wa min Allah tawfiq
– Sheykh Abd Kerim Effendi