On the eve of the me’raj of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), my thoughts wander to my recent trip to Jerusalem, from which the Prophet was raised to the heavens, in an unparalleled event, during which he met Allah, led the prayer of the who’s-who of Prophets (PBUH), saw heaven and hell, and was shown the signs of Allah. Being in Bait Al Muqqadis is like reclining in the shade of Allah, praying there is like a beautiful dream from which you long never to awaken, and remembering the me’raj there, fills the soul with the sweetness of love for Allah and His messenger!
What does the Me’raj mean to us today? It is certainly a night to commemorate, but it should go beyond being just a romanticized story of a journey to heaven and back, told once a year.
In the spiritual dimension, hearing the story of the Me’raj awakens that dormant part of the soul, the part which thrives on miracles, on the unseen Majesty of Our Lord, and on the infinite possibilities that exist through His will. This particular dimension of the self is oft-neglected by the banality of everyday life, by newspapers and television, riddled with tales of the sufferings of war and poverty. We forget, about that mystical, supernatural side of life, where the sublimity of Allah are most evident and where we can truly connect with Him.
In the physical realm, the fact that Al Quds is under siege, that Jerusalem, and Palestine at large, are occupied by a Zionist regime, and that the simple act of offering prayers at the Sacred Masjid, is a procedure which involves numerous checkpoints and security searches, should be born in mind, when we think about the fact, that it was from this land, above all, (even the holy of holiest Makkah), that Allah chose as the starting point of the ascension to paradise. We should not for a minute forget the struggle for justice, in the land which leads to heaven!
Yes, we should celebrate this night with sweets, story telling and praying, but we should remember that in the depths of me’raj lies a very serious responsibility, to be the Ummah worthy of the Prophet (PBUH) on whom the me’raj was bestowed. Let us honour me’raj, by aspiring to be that Ummah, for whom the Prophet undertook that journey, and let us honour it by remembering the people of Palestine,cby reaching out to them, through our words, prayers, wealth and solidarity!