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In the Name of God بسم الله
Labbaik786

Staying Connected During Travel

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S/a,

I had gone on a business trip/family vacation for a few days.  I had my wife and 4 kids with me.

Before my travel, I had firmly reinforced my intentions of praying all my prayers on time.  This has previously been a weakness for me (praying during travel), but since my spirituality has increased over the last time I traveled, I thought I would fare well. Unfortunately, I failed! :-(  My first day was okay, but the remainder 6 days were not!

I have been trying to search the reasons for me failing so easily and trying to see what I can do for the future so I do not repeat this poor behavior.  So far, I feel the following factors contributed to my failure:

  • quiet place to pray (I was in a VERY busy city and it seemed like there was people everywhere)
  • clean place to pray (issues of najis/unclean areas)
  • "inconvenience" of doing wuddhu - both with dress attire and having to do wuddhu in public areas
  • fear of persecution in this political climate (go figure how much I depend on God!)
  • responsibility of 4 kids
  • being extremely tired and exhausted at end of day (to at least do qadha)
  • being outside the comfort of home (or place I am familiar with) etc

Can anyone suggest what I can do to make my connection with God be as strong during my periods of travel?

Thanks.

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*Ironically, I found this (below) in my email on my arrival (it has started helping me and hope it helps others too):

Quranic Reflections 6:16. Āyat 66:8 – Turning to Allah (swt)

 
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا تُوبُوا إِلَى اللَّهِ تَوْبَةً نَصُوحًا
Yā ayyuhalladhīna āmanū tubū ilallāhi tawbatan nasūha.
O you who believe, turn to Allah a sincere turning
(Sūratut Tahrīm, No. 66, Āyat 8)

 
This verse is an invitation to turn back to God after having turned away from Him. For all those who have become distracted from God, have disobeyed Him, and have not made Him the focus of their lives, God calls them back to Him. He asks them to repent for the distance they have created between themselves and their Lord. It should be a sincere repentance based on awe of Allah (swt) and a disappointment with the self.
 
The word nasūhā implies sincerity as well as a firm determination. Its purity prevents a person from returning to the pollution of sin.
 
Turning back to Allah has to have the following qualities:
a) Feeling remorse with the heart at having turned away
b) Apologizing and seeking forgiveness with the tongue
c) Stopping sins and all that turns one away from God
d) Intending to continue quality (c), above.
 
When the world is full of distractions and the human being is so weak, it is very easy to turn away from God. This does not only mean committing sins. Sometimes it is possible that a believer is not disobedient. But he is apathetic in his obedience. His connection with Allah is weak despite performing his wājibāt (the required obligations). This distance from God weakens his resolve and creates emptiness in life which he seeks to fill with other things. Allah tells him to turn back to him, sincerely and strongly. Such a turning back is valuable and can transform his life.
 
It is incredible that the human being in all his weakness and smallness turns away from His creator. God in all His greatness and majesty calls him back. Why? After having created him, having blessed him with so much, giving him guidance so he can turn to Him, God still is patient with Him. He does not give up on him and invites him to come to Him. Imam Ali (a) says:  Be obedient to Allah and love His remembrance. Picture to yourself that you are running away while He is approaching you. He is calling you to His forgiveness and concealing your faults with his kindness while you are fleeing from him towards others. (Nahjul Balāgha, Sermon 220)
 
In Du‘ā al Iftitāh, recited in the nights of Holy Ramadān, we say:
[O Allah] I have not seen a more generous master, patient with a wretched slave, than You are with me. My Lord, You call me and I turn away from You, You show affection to me and I show hatred towards You, You display Your love for me and I do not respond, as though I am above You. But this does not prevent You from having mercy on me, being good to me, and favoring me, through Your Generosity and Nobility
 
Such is the Merciful God we worship. As we enter the season of worship during the months of Rajab, Sha’ban and holy Ramadhan, turn back to God with sincerity and determination. Recite this verse to remind yourself of God’s invitation and accept the call to turn to Him. Life will become much more meaningful and enlightened.

 

 

Edited by Labbaik786

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1 hour ago, Labbaik786 said:

S/a,

I had gone on a business trip/family vacation for a few days.  I had my wife and 4 kids with me.

Before my travel, I had firmly reinforced my intentions of praying all my prayers on time.  This has previously been a weakness for me (praying during travel), but since my spirituality has increased over the last time I traveled, I thought I would fare well. Unfortunately, I failed! :-(  My first day was okay, but the remainder 6 days were not!

I have been trying to search the reasons for me failing so easily and trying to see what I can do for the future so I do not repeat this poor behavior.  So far, I feel the following factors contributed to my failure:

  • quiet place to pray (I was in a VERY busy city and it seemed like there was people everywhere)
  • as for this point, if you are not able to concentrate in an environment that isn't quiet, if you really want to ensure that you pray on time, try to pray on time and when you come home pray the same prayers again (redo them), as I do the same whenever I travel somwhere and have to pray while sitting in the train.
  • clean place to pray (issues of najis/unclean areas)
  • I know a really handy one for this one!! There's a special plastic prayer mat that you can purchase almost anywhere on the Internet! It's really convenient for these kind of things!!
  • "inconvenience" of doing wuddhu - both with dress attire and having to do wuddhu in public areas
  • Do wuddhu with  a clean stone instead of water! Get a clean stone (or sand) "wash" your hands with the stone or clean sand and then swipe your face with your hands. This can be done during travels where you don't have acces to clean water or are a women who has difficulties finding a secure washing place for only women.
  • fear of persecution in this political climate (go figure how much I depend on God!)
  • I don't know what you mean but if you mean that it might rain then standing under a rooftop might be a good idea.
  • responsibility of 4 kids
  • Do you have any other family with you? Friends with you? Let them take care of them while you pray. If not, then just wait until you are home so that your kids are not endangered.
  • being extremely tired and exhausted at end of day (to at least do qadha)
  • You really need to try to pray even if you're tired. Just like you're tired when you stand up for fajr in the middle of the night and pray! You really need to pray, if you're unable, try to rest, eat something, drink something, if you're REALLY tired perhaps even try to sleep for 20 mins (20 mins naps give you energy).
  • being outside the comfort of home (or place I am familiar with) etc
  • If you don't want to pray there or can't really pray then try to pray while sitting or standing only and redo your prayers when you get home.

Can anyone suggest what I can do to make my connection with God be as strong during my periods of travel?

Always ask god for everything, ask him for guidance during your travels and he will help you in the most astonishing ways.

Try to do things like helping someone, compensate for the deeds that you don't/can't do while traveling with other deeds, even a small thing can mean A LOT more than you expect. 

The easiest way to gain Hasanaat is tasbeeh. You can do it anywhere, at any time, at any place! Read surahs from the quran, do mustahab tasbeehaat, anything!

Also, if you miss your prayers but have a good reason for it as for why you couldn't pray, then it is not considered a sin, as you didn't not pray intentionally!

That's for my answer!

I hope you find it usefull, have a good day!

 

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@amina_ibrahim s/a sister,

My apologies for the delayed response.  Thank you so much for your thoughtful answers.  I kept on going through them and even though everything made sense and I could relate to, there seemed something more stronger that was preventing me.  In searching deeper, I think everything I mentioned, even though legit obstacles, was just me making excuses.  The real reason I think is that when I am away from my environment, my connection to Him becomes weaker.  I think I need to work on connecting with Him in a more stronger way.

In saying that, m/A you have so much put yourself in His trust.  You have a lot of "blind" faith (in a VERY good way!) in Him.  Can you possibly share how ( and maybe why) your heart has reached Him in such a deep way.

Once again, thank you for your response.

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Wsalam,

I too apologise for the late response,

I'm happy that you found out why and that my response was useful!

If your connection becomes weaker when you are far away from your environment , just also always remember that Allah is always with you, everywhere, anywere, no matter where you are!

You said:

"In saying that, m/A you have so much put yourself in His trust.  You have a lot of "blind" faith (in a VERY good way!) in Him.  Can you possibly share how ( and maybe why) your heart has reached Him in such a deep way."

You mention that I have "blind" faith, however, that is not entirely true, I believe in god because I have looked through his books, heard scientific proof of him existing etc. 

And it is entirely for this reason that I put my trust in Allah only, that I try my best to pray good, to fast good, to make a lot of hassanaat is all for my selfish desires..., however, the reason that I trust Allah, the reason that I follow him, is because I have read and heard his greatness!

I don't know if I'm capable of giving a good explanation for this, but I swear, every time I'm lost, every time I make a mistake, my connection to him becomes stronger and I try not to make any mistakes or the same mistake anymore.

I read about him and all he tells us is :" MAKE DUA! ASK FOR FORGIVENESS! DO YOU WANT SOMETHING? ASK! DO YOU NEED HELP? ASK! ARE YOU SICK? TURN TO ME! DO YOU WANT HEAVEN? PRAY! MAKE DUA! MAKE HASAANAAT! BE A GOOD PERSON! BECOME A BETTER PERSON! LET ME RECOGNISE YOU! LET ME RECOGNISE TH GREAT IMAAN THAT YOU MAY BRING FORTH! READ! GAIN KNOWLEDGE! COME TO ME! CALL OUT TO ME! CALL OUT TO ME! ASK ME!

And I swear

Every time I read about his mercifulness I cry so much, every time I read certain parts of the koran that are about forgiveness, dua, anything, I cry so much. Because I just can't believe that we have such a merciful lord. I can't explain it very well but I am grateful, so very grateful that HE is our lord. 

HE IS SO MERCIFUL AND HE FORGIVES SO EASILY IF YOU TRULY ARE SORRY AND YET WHAT DO WE DO??? We turn away from him, we do things that do not please him etc.

AND WHAT MAKES MY CONNECTION TO Him AND MY TRUST IN HIM SO GREAT is not because I'm a good muslim, it is because you can do nothing else but put your trust in him TAWAKALTA 'ALLA Allah is what I say when I am not sure of my destination, when I am not sure of what to do. BECAUSE HE WANTS THAT, BECAUSE HE WANTS US TO TURN TO HIM, TO ASK HIM FOR HELP, TO RELY ON HIM.

THIS IS WHY I LOVE Allah, THIS IS WHY I LOVE PRAYING TO Allah, THIS IS WHY I LOVE WANTING TO BE RECOGNISED BY Allah!

He is there my brother/sister, come on, Allah is waiting for you to call out to him, Allah is waiting for you to ask him for guidance, Allah is the most patient one, He will always be there for you, He is there for you right now, at any time, at any place. Go to him, pray to him, cry to him, be recognised by him and he will surely answer your prayers, just be patient.

Because if you really are desperate, Allah will surely help you!

Edited by amina_ibrahim

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