News and Updates
Monday, 24 June 2024

Winter: Embracing Spiritual Growth

Muslim Hands

Winter in South Africa brings thoughts of warm jackets, woolly socks, and hot chocolate with marshmallows and cream. However, beyond these comforts lie the realities of early mornings spent de-icing cars, wet socks, delayed trains, and higher utility bills.

However, as believers, we can transform our perspective on winter. Let us draw inspiration from the Sunnah and the lives of our predecessors to make this season special - a time for spiritual growth and connection with Allah (swt).

What Makes a Believer’s Winter Unique?

Ideal Days for Fasting

Winter in South Africa offers short days, making it perfect for optional fasts. Al-Ḥasan al-Baṣrī (raḥimahullah) remarked, “Winter is the best season for the believer. Its nights are long for him to pray in, and its days are short for him to fast in.” The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “Fasting in winter is the easy prize.” (Tirmidhī)

It's an opportunity to make up missed fasts and observe Monday, Thursday fasts, and the middle days of the Hijri month.

Experience the Joy of Night Prayer

Winter offers the tranquility of night prayers (tahajjud), a time when one can deeply connect with Allah. Starting tahajjud, even ten minutes before Fajr, fosters consistency and spiritual growth.

Abu Umamah reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Hold on tight to the night prayer. Indeed, it is the habit of the righteous who came before you.”

Reflecting on Spiritual Realities

Even as we endure the cold, it reminds us of Allah's warnings and blessings. The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “Hell fire complained to its Lord, saying: ‘Parts of me have consumed other parts.’ So, He allowed it to breathe out twice: one in the winter and one in the summer.” - Bukhari

Gratitude and Compassion

Winter prompts gratitude for our blessings and compassion for those less fortunate. Amidst our warmth and comfort, let’s remember the homeless and needy, reflecting the teachings of Saʿīd al-Kalbī (rahimahullah) who wept for the poor.

Opportunities for Accepted Duas

Rain in winter brings more opportunities for accepted supplications. The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “Two are not rejected: the du‘ā’ made at the time of adhān, and under the rain.”

Instead of expressing sorrow for the rain, let’s turn to Allah with heartfelt duas, seeking His mercy and guidance.

This winter, let us make it a season of spiritual growth, where we find joy in worship, gratitude in blessings, and compassion in action. May Allah (swt) bless us with opportunities to draw closer to Him through prayer, fasting, and acts of kindness.

Muslim Hands ZA

Established in 1996, Muslim Hands SA NPC is an aid agency and NGO aiming to help those affected by natural disasters, conflict and poverty. It is a branch of Muslim Hands UK established in 1993 in Nottingham.