After the first edition of Salummy’s Ladies of the month, some of the readers requested for this program to be monthly. I contemplated and I came to this conclusion, “why don’t I buy their idea?” Having not featured anything about Ramadhan which is quite embarrassing on my part, I decided to have this session cater for Ramadhan as well. It is my hope that you will like what I have for you this Sunday afternoon, till then let’s move to the interview.
Today, I have two beautiful ladies with me. Close friends, and two of the sweetest people I have known. They are fans of my work and they have always pushed me to be better. The type of people that you just feel positive being around with. They don’t care if it won’t benefit them but if it’s for you, then they will always stand up for you, through thick and thin. Introducing to you, Nihad Omar and Sheikha Bahashwaan.
SK: What does Ramadhan mean to you?
Nihad: Ermm…Ramadhan is a month of Maghfirah (to ask for forgiveness from Allah). Ramadhan is a month that is meant to take us closer to Allah. You can ask for health, Tawba, happiness just name it and He shall grant your need. However, this has to be done with lots of Iman and hope. During Ramadhan, you can help the needy more, feed them and Allah is sure to increase your provisions. Fasting purifies the soul but the main intention behind fasting is to attain the pleasure of Allah, to make our hereafter.
Sheikha: I can begin by telling the viewers what is Ramadhan. Ramadhan is derived from the Arabic word “Ramad” which means to burn. So the whole concept of Ramadhan is to burn away our sins by multiplying our good deeds. Ramadhan is the 9th month in the Islamic calendar where all Muslims all around the world abstain from eating and drinking for the sake of Allah, isn’t this amazing? (*wink)
SK: Great responses. Do you wish we could have this month over and over again? What is your say on this?
Nihad: I will answer that question rhetorically. Who wouldn’t want to be closer to Allah? Who wouldn’t want to fast to please Allah? (*wink)
Sheikha: With Ramadhan upon us, most of our families naturally infuse with happiness. It makes us more obedient to the commands of Allah and improves our characters. It would have been a blessing indeed to have this month the whole year round but here is my word on this, if Ramadhan came over and over again, it would feel normal. We wouldn’t have been able to accrue any benefits of the month and maybe these Hasanat (good deeds) that is solely for this month would have perished. SubhanaAllah, I would say if it can be done in Ramadhan, why not in the rest of the months?
SK: That was deep, girlfriends. Never in a thousand years, would I have answered like that. Impressive. Now onto the next question. Can you tell the world how it feels to pray Taraweh, the benefits that come with this prayer that is offered only in this holy month?
Nihad: Actually, the feeling of praying this special prayer is indescribable. It yields happiness inside your soul and makes you feel like you are the strongest person on earth… If prayed in the masjid, it acts as a unifying agent. You get to see new faces every day, interaction becomes a strong game (haha), you feel purified, you feel, I cannot explain any further because you may think I am exaggerating(lol).
Sheikha: Taraweh is one of the greatest acts of worship in which Muslims seek to get closer to Allah. Taraweh has spiritual, physical, medical and social benefits. Praying the prayer with the Imam until the time he finishes is equivalent to spending the whole night in prayers, therefore it’s an undertaking of extreme benefits and Thawaab.
SK: Funny enough, during Ramadhan we miss out on these benefits by doing so much shopping for Eid celebrations. That is not the basis of Ramadhan especially the last ten days that are meant to take us away from the Hell-fire! We see people indulge in Play Station, cards, outings, shopping…it’s like the whole concept dies down when the right time to seek for Allah comes! The last 10 days, let us not miss out! Sleeping is forever but we are not assured of getting blessings of worshipping for 1000 months any other time! The next question is, Describe to me your love for the prophet. Do you think we love him enough? Do you think he would be happy if he came to our homes and saw how much we have scattered our Deen?
Nihad: The kind of love I have for my prophet cannot be superseded by any other kind of love, something words can never describe! Even though our actions do not always live up to the teachings of the prophet, believing Muslims even today love the prophet as much as the predecessors. What would we not give to meet him even once? Well, honey, let’s be optimistic (lol) May we always be on the right track and it is my hope that Allah and His messenger are both pleased with us… I don’t want to think otherwise.
Sheikha: Such perfection can never be equaled. The perfection of our beloved Muhammed. His kindness towards the creatures of Allah, his heart was filled with love for everyone and this is the reason for my intense love for him and I hope to meet him one day, Ameen. We can never love him enough for what he has done for the Ummah is incomparable.
SK: I chose you as the beauty of the month; tell us of your 5 traits, five things that inspire you and five things that you hate.
Nihad: Well, I have a massive heart that I am told I took from my maternal mother, my skin complexion is my dad’s, and I’m petite like my aunt, I got my mum’s hair texture and am kind beyond kind (haha). A feature I took from my mother.
Sheikha: I am someone who would take necessary steps to achieve my milestones, I am determined and hardworking, and I tend to be a dreamer (haha,). I believe that if you can dream it, you can achieve it! And yes, I am an introverted extrovert.
Nihad: My biggest inspiration is Nana Khadija. I just wish I lived in her times, then comes my mother, then comes you Salma. MashaAllah you inspire me a lot in case you did not know that and then comes this soul sister of mine, Munah Alhaidar. Basically I can call her anytime and she is always supportive and for all the women out there that face struggles but still manage to smile, I like you.
Sheikha: Parents, their love and support is commendable, my friends, they have always helped me through my tough times, I am also inspired by great writing, I believe that it is a gift that only a few people have, I am also inspired by people who smile at strangers, funny right? I am also inspired by people who work towards achievement of their dreams.
Nihad: What do I hate? I hate friends that turned out to be my enemies, liars, betrayers, men who don’t understand their responsibilities and I HATE ( I had to capitalize that, lol) when Arab men think they are better than women, that is a stupid mentality!
Sheikha: I just hate negative people and negative atmospheres.
SK: Which youth do you look up to? That you want to be like him/her?
Nihad: You, yes You Salma. I look up to and I want to be a writer as well!
Sheikha: I look up to my best friend. She has been supportive, never gave up on me and I wish I could describe her more.
Thank you for the responses, Ramadhan Mubarak to you all. Let us strive in doing good in secrecy and with the intention of only pleasing Allah… Good day!