We're all familiar with the importance of a good signal. Whether it's an ethernet connection or a wireless network, signal strength is just as important to us as breathing. Most of us have traded in our outdated dial-up modems for a DSL line so that we can connect faster and work more efficiently. Paying good money to cable and internet companies to give us the best connection ensures that we succeed in 'working' without any loading.
So, what's all the hype about having a fast internet and staying connected? Well, that's simple. You want to be able to access your virtual world at all times and in your moment of need. We don't waste a day in getting hi-speed internet, but when it comes to connecting with Allah, we make do with the slow dial-up modem that takes forever to connect, cuts off when the phone rings, or leaves the page blank for so long that we're turned off from even trying to connect. What we need to get is a line that stays connected 24/7.
This is one of the most common types of soul, which all of us experience at one time or another. This is when while waiting for things to load, you're thinking about what to do next. You've just connected, then remember something really important to do that can't wait another five minutes. You finish prayer and recite Tasbeeh at a speed that puts hi-speed to shame. You rush off to do what you just remembered, promising to do better the next time you sit down to have a one-on-one with Allah.
Unlike Dial-Up, the Hi-Speed Soul is one that gets connection as soon as it stands before its Lord. This is the type of connection that is essential for a spiritually successful life. With Hi-Speed, you're confident that Allah is there for you and listening to you. One good way of becoming a hi-speeder is to understand the words in your prayer. Salat is your one-on-one with Allah five times a day. It's a special VIP meeting that is set up for you to lighten your burden and meet with your Creator. If there is anyone who can truly understand our troubles, it's the One who created us.
Wireless Network/WiFi Soul
This is one of the handiest types of connections. The WiFi soul is one that can link with Allah anytime and anywhere. You can connect with Allah while you're in the car on your way to work or taking the bus to school. You don't always need a prayer mat or Tasbeeh to reach Allah. You're not bound to remembering Allah only five times a day. You can think about Allah during the day, or talk to Him about something that's bothering you, and you'll have made that connection. When your heart knows He is listening, you've got a pretty strong signal. Try and feel His presence around you throughout your day, and you'll notice the difference in your connectivity.
There are times when we need a little help from our community in finding the connection. So when you feel like you've lost your way and can't seem to understand how to get back on track, take a drive to the mosque. Sometimes it helps to listen to lectures and spend time in the Masjid with fellow Muslims. Getting together with brothers and sisters in Islam helps boost our spiritual self and gives us that push that we need in the right direction. We're given support through the spirit of others to move towards Allah and encouraged to find some form of connection. Sometimes, just sitting in the Masjid spreads a feeling of serenity within us.
Find your comfort zone. Find a place in the house where you know you'll be alone and nothing will distract you. If you're good with words, than let them flow. Talk to Allah. Tell Him what's bothering you, like you'd tell your best friend. If you need a little push in knowing what to say, open Sahifa Sajjadia. The beauty in this book knows no bounds. The Imam's words will bring tears to the eyes without even having to try. Use the supplications that he has taught us. Dwell in the meanings of the poetry that has so beautifully been written for us to find a spiritual link with Allah. If you don't speak or understand Arabic, than read the translation. Understand what you are saying, because the whole point is to talk with Allah, and for that you're going to have to know what you're saying. Once you start connecting with Allah at this level, you'll find it much easier to connect at every other level.
The thing with du'as is that everyone has their own. As important as it is to make du'a for our needs, we should also give importance to reciting the supplications provided to us by our Guides (peace be upon them). There are a multitude of supplications that can help boost our level of spirituality and connection with Allah. Reciting du'as by our beloved Infallibles is one of the best ways to boost our connectivity. Try all the different du'as provided by our Holy Imams and see which ones touch your soul the most. Sometimes when reciting a du'a, we'll find the words matching our situation in life. It will feel as though the dua was written especially for us. Try a variation of duas, reciting a different one each night. Whichever we chose, we must make sure we understand what you are saying. This is the key to feeling connected.
Our heart, just like our body, needs a routine workout to stay in shape and avoid rusting. A beautiful saying of our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him and his progeny) states that, "There is a polish for everything that takes away rust, and the polish for the heart is the remembrance of Allah." So the best workout for our hearts would be to remember Allah with sincerity. Don't just perform the ritual of prayers without trying to connect with your Lord. Let your soul find the pleasure in meeting Allah. Once you've made a proper connection, you'll remain connected forever. Insha'Allah.
Zainab Abbas is an Islamic school teacher in Toronto. She is a new member of the Islamic Insights team and hopes to write about her experiences as a newlywed as well as general Islamic and community-related topics.