The fourth day of the week, Thursday, never had much significance. Mondays mark the beginning of the week, Wednesdays identify the middle of the week, and Fridays bring the week to an end. As they are school nights, social outings on Thursday nights are unheard of- at least in my family. One word, however, changed Thursdays for me.
The word behind the metamorphosis of a typically boring Thursday into a spiritual Thursday is the religious word halaqah. These weekly gatherings brought a newfound sense of happiness into my life and revived my spiritual beliefs.
A halaqah is an Islamic gathering that promotes the remembrance of our Creator, Allah (SWT). Halaqahs are typically done consistently, on schedule. The halaqah I attend is hosted every Thursday night at sundown at The Muslim Unity Center (MUC), the Bloomfield community mosque.
The gathering revolves around a specific topic given by a chosen leader. In the first halaqah, the speaker’s lecture was about Allah (SWT), which opened up my heart in a way I didn’t think was possible.
The speaker emphasized that as Muslims, it is our duty to love Allah (SWT), yet a feeling of love for anyone can’t be reached without knowing the person. You can’t love Allah (SWT) without knowing Allah (SWT), simply put. Although the speaker had a great point, I was confused as to how we would get to know Allah (SWT).
I had questions. How do you know someone you can’t see? How do you love someone you’ve never met? My lurking questions were quickly answered.
Allah (SWT) has ninety nine names, The Most Merciful, The Most Compassionate, The Protector, etc. The purpose of the halaqah I attend is to know and love Allah (SWT). Each week, one of the ninety-nine holy names of God is chosen, and the leader delves deep into the meaning of the name. Each name serves as a characteristic God attains.
Knowing the meaning of each name pulls you closer and closer to Allah (SWT), creating a special spiritual relationship between the Lord and his slaves. Knowing and understanding the names of Allah (SWT) helps me love Him and helps me love serving Him. Attending this halaqah brings me knowledge and understanding of my creator, reviving my spiritual beliefs.
I am forever grateful for Thursday night halqahs at the Muslim Unity Center. Not only does attending these lectures revive my spiritual beliefs, it also brings a sense of light and joy into my everyday life. It inspires me to get to know and love my creator, which I’m grateful for. I have a more positive outlook on life because I know that I am not living a lost one, one without a sense of guidance from a higher power.
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