Brothers and sisters, Muharram is not a ritual. Don’t allow Muharram to become just 10 days of going to the mosque, shedding a few tears for the sacrifice of Imam Hussain, wearing black as some sort of fashion statement, and then returning to your normal life. Whilst the tears, the wearing of black to express your mourning (with sincere intentions of course) and the attending of majalis are all important, we must not neglect a fundamental of the message of Imam Hussain:
We hear the word being thrown around a lot, often with no real substantial method of achieving one. We also hear “revolution starts from the mind”, also thrown around without any real direction towards which we can achieve a revolution of the mind.
I think the idea is fairly simple though:
You cannot change something that is wrong, without being conscious of it being wrong in the first place.
So here’s 3 aspects of mental revolution I will be working on this Muharram.
1: Eliminate the I.
An ongoing goal really, it can never be achieved, but that’s a different discussion all together. Whenever you participate in any act, be it charity, activism, sharing knowledge or anything else, the letter “I” should not even come to your mind. Anything you do, think of it as God doing it, you are just the means. Anything you achieve, remember it can be seized from you in a moment. You can be reduced to dust if that is the will of the Almighty, you are a dependent existence who is nothing in your own right. A good exercise is to literally constantly repeat to yourself “I am a nobody” when going about your daily activity. CAUTION: this does not mean you have low self esteem.
2: Question the mainstream story.
A lot of us jump on the bandwagon of public outrage at any given situation. Does the following story sound at all familiar?
1.The event happens 2. Media report it 3. the public becomes outraged 4. Hashtagging left right and centre 5. real facts of the event come out 6. Everyone realises the media exaggerated or misreported. 7. We look like melons.
In ANY major story, make sure you check all the facts from both sides of the story and more than one source before tweeting that all important hashtag.
3. Maintain more than one focus.
Many of us have a habit of becoming tunnel visioned and only seem to be able to focus on one cause at a time. It’s important for us to be able to focus on many issues and propagate them proactively, rather than waiting for a popular hype, focusing on one issue and acting reactively.
Would be delighted to hear some of your own goals and ambitions this Muharram.