Think. Learn. Act. Remind.
Whenever we think about dying we tend to think of it as something in the future far ahead. We think that we still have plenty of time left in this material world, that we can still live our lives as we please because, after all, accountability is not being asked for now.
The mention of death is immediately followed by a “God Forbid!!!!”. Why? Why is death so dreaded, so incomprehensible, so dreadful that even the mention of it is forbidden.?Why is the person who just passed on referred to as “Poor Fellow?” Aren’t the poor fellows we, who have been left behind? We who are left to grieve for the one who has passed away, we who still have to strive to pass the test of life? Do you know why the dead person is referred to by the Arabic word “Marhoom?” It means “to whom mercy has been shown or one who has been treated with mercy.” So in fact he has been given mercy by being freed from this life and being sent to a better place (according to his deeds in life of course).
So what happens when the only thing in this world that is actually real, i.e. death, comes upon us? It could be suddenly or it could be after a long, prosperous life. When we were alive did we ever think what it would be like to be left all alone, buried 6 feet deep in the ground? Would our grave be dark and foreboding or bright and welcoming? What would it be like to go to a place where nobody can ever come with you, a path which you have to travel solely on your own? Why did you not ever think of this place when you were alive? After all this and the hereafter is your ultimate residing place? So why did they seem so far away when you were alive? How come we only spoke of death as a thing which should never happen to anybody when we know that ultimately it has to happen to everybody? The ultimate irony of it!!
I was reading the dua which you read after finishing the Quran and the first few words struck the deepest chord with me. They go like this “Allahumma aanis wahshati fee qabri” which means “Oh God, make my fear familiar with my grave.” I just have not been able to get these words out of my mind. They portray the ultimate goal of life, the complete truth of this world in a nutshell. As one would say, “This is what it boils down to.”
Why don’t we make it a habit to think of our grave every living moment, every time we are about to lie, every time we speak ill of someone, every time we hold a grudge, in fact every time we do anything at all. Try to envision whether you our making a resting place for yourself which you would look forward to going to or not.