Day 13 – Now or Later

“It’s an intriguing topic – to purify now, or later?”

11/3/11

It’s funny how stores here post pictures of things they don’t sell, especially restaurants. So many people go up to these food stands and be like, ooo this sandwich looks good, can I have one? Store owners be like, um…nah, we don’t sell that. That would never fly in America. These places got so long to go before they catch up, forreal.

I’m sitting on my bed, writing, & I can hear my dad & the other men in the group talking about me in the other room. Nothing bad, just about how old I am, how quiet I am – and how I’m always writing all the time. It’s starting to catch on as my “thing”. I pretty much am always writing around them, so it’s understandable. They all think I’m writing a book, that’s funny. I always just imagined this to be a notetaking expedition, But, we’ll see…

I mainly wanted to preserve the experience for myself, in my elder years perhaps, and to be able to share with others.

I’m the youngest of my group, not sure if I’ve mentioned that. Because I’m the youngest, and there’s such a significant gap, the men tend to assume I’m much younger than I actually am – also cuz I’m the son of their friend. They all sort of carry this sentiment that I’m going to be pure after this, and since I’m so young, I have to be even more careful the rest of my life, so as to not mess that up. If your Hajj is accepted, then all of your sins are forgiven, you would be as pure as a newborn baby. Do they feel like they are making the more strategic move in going for Hajj while they’re old? I’m not quite sure, but it’s an intriguing topic – to purify now, or later? Obviously, there’s the question of – well, will there even be a later? You could die long before you grow old. On the other hand, purify now – live a long life…what if you screw it up? As much as I would love to go off & sin for a few more decades & come back & seek purification, it just doesn’t seem right. I’ve already done things I regret, it’s never too early to seek forgiveness. Who knows? Maybe this experience will motivate me to live even better iA. It’s a blessing regardless, Alhamdulillah.

One of the uncles, last night, said something interesting to me. He said that I’m very lucky to be here, to have received this invitation from Allah to come to the Holy Lands, which I agree with. He then said that, “Most kids today are not good”, which I disagree with. It’s unfortunate, considering I learned that he has children whom he has trouble dealing with. Then again, from what I understood, he was trying to impose on his children to attend Islamic schools, to be more religious. I heard him talk about how they hated him for years, I’m assuming they would rebel and push back. It doesn’t mean they’re “not good”, just means you need to understand them better. Who would fight the opportunity to be closer to The One that created him? If you suck the love and joy out of the faith, you can’t expect anything short of rebellion against it. There is no Islam in that Islam.

Anyways, he said that Allah brings those here whom He loves and wishes to purify and benefit. That alone is an enormous blessing, distinction, honor, favor, and reward. I pray my friends, and more young people, would receive the same distinction. It can only benefit our ummah (community) at-large, iA. This is truly a blessed place, despite all of its shortcomings, and all would benefit from visiting it. Allah knows best when we would get the most from it in our lives.

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Filed under Mecca, Reflections

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