Sunday, October 13, 2013

Squeeze: The art of being in 5 places at 1 time

The Qur'an is fascinating. In a short sentence or even in one word it can convey a thousand meanings.

"Indeed, We have made it an Arabic Qur'an that you might understand." (Az Zukhruf:3)

I was initially puzzled by the verse above. We made the Qur'an in Arabic so that "you may understand"? That is logical in the beginning centuries of islam, when a majority of muslims were Arabs. But how can an arabic Qur'an be understood when the majority of muslims now are non-Arabs?

But the Qur'an is true every time, all the time.

Allah made the arabic language special. It is a very subtle language and beautiful to listen to as well. Arabic is a language where you can say a lot by saying a little, making it the best language in which to reveal the Qur'an. One word in Arabic can have many meanings, and all these meanings are true. That is why Arabic is used so 'you might understand', because if it was revealed in any other language people might have trouble understanding this religion fully.

we'll look at the meaning of ONE WORD used in The Book to understand the secrets of time management.

Du'at have a heavy burden on their backs. We have to be active in da'wah, while excelling in whatever studies/jobs we're involved in, AND at the same time be good children/fathers/mothers/brothers/sisters/friends. AND try to save the world from global taghut-ism while being steady like a boss.

Which means we have to do DOUBLE the work of everyone else. So time management is absolutely crucial.

I know of one brother who handles at least 10 projects at work, has a family to take care of, has a blog, and managed to write a book. And I heard that in addition to bringing up children and circle-buddies, he also farms lobsters. 

"my man, you must be joking!"
No joke. And the secret to time management is simple. We just look at the meaning of a word used to describe time in the Qur'an.

العصر (Al 'Asr)

"I was expecting a ground-breaking theory, and you give me one word from the Qur'an" 
Aha, let's see how special this one word is.

'Asr doesn't necessarily mean time. 

 عصر - pressing, squeezing out, wringing; age, era, time; period; epoch; afternoon; afternoon prayer

To squeeze out. In surah an Naba' clouds are described as المعصرات, i.e "the squeezers" (of rain). The use of the term 'Asr to describe time is appropriate because time is always being squeezed, its always running out, that's why disbelieving people are in a state of loss.

That is the nature of time. It is squeezed. We can derive from this two simple steps to use time wisely:

1. SQUEEZE OUT bad/useless things, SQUEEZE IN good things
By promising to sell ourselves to Allah, we have understood that the enjoyment of this life is temporary and paradise is better and more everlasting. Forget about doing clearly bad things, we should even be cutting down on things that are permissible but are of no real benefit.

"From the (signs of) goodness of a person's Islam, he abandons what does not concern him" (Tirmidhi)

We sometimes hear people say 'i don't have time to study Islam' or 'i don't have time to read qur'an', but these same people can spend hours 'catching up with friends' on facebook (stalking) or defeating imaginary trolls and goblins. Du'at should have little or no idle time.

Allah created 24 hours to be enough for our needs. We just need to defeat our inner trolls and goblins and focus on doing things that can save us when we meet Allah.

2. SQUEEZE MORE out of your daily schedule
Be more efficient. Get more out of doing the same thing.

"I don't have time to exercise. I'm a desk potato at the office".

Here's a suggestion: Don't take the elevators. Walk up the stairs. Even better, run up the stairs! 

"I'm tough as bricks. And I also memorise the Qur'an. Hasta la vista iblis"

You can recite the ma'thurat while ironing clothes in the morning. You can download quran recitations and memorise qur'an while driving or taking the train. You can listen to recordings whilst being stuck in the traffic jam, rather than listen to random stuff on the radio.

"Give me a break can you? Only crazy and obsessed people can follow these punishing schedules. Rilek-rilek sudeh" (let me relax)

You have to be crazy and obsessed to change something as big as the whole world. Yes, the schedule of a du'at is tight and 'punishing'. But on the day of judgment, there's no bigger punishment for a person than the time he wasted on Earth.

Let's repeat that again: Squeeze Out, Squeeze In, Squeeze More.

Easy peasy lemon squeasy.

Great men throughout history practised these time management principles: they commit themselves fully to their causes, leaving little time for anything else. And they have razor-sharp precision and effiency in carrying out their actions.

Take charge and squeeze your time, otherwise it will squeeze you dry.


Anonymous said...

there was one time, during jaulah in Indonesia, we met an ikhwan who is:
1. a governor of the province where we were jaulah-ing.
2. a father of ten kids of varying ages.
3. a husband.
4. a murabbi for a lot of circles (in Indonesia, it's normal for a murabbi to hold ten or more circles)
5. a mutarabbi himself.
6. a writer.

and a whole lot more.

When we asked him, how in the world did he manage to manage his time?

His answer: if you do D&T, you will get quality of time, masa yang berkah, insyaAllah.

The Author said...

Anonymous: Agree with you 100%! hebatnya masyaallah

Anonymous said...

Look him up. His name is Irwan Prayitno. Dakwatuna featured quite a few articles with him in it.

amyheidi said...


A post inspired by this post of yours.