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I Prayed for Peace Today

I found myself praying for peace today.
I’ve been in and out of my mind a thousand times
I know You heard me.
I know I wasn’t alone in that room,
shaking with the fear of fear,
the harrowing loneliness.
I cried out to You on my hands. On my knees.
With my face pushed down against the ground.
If I could have gotten lower, I swear I would.
Because that is helplessness, the truest kind…
The kind that knows nothing, not one leaf, or tear, or smile can be
without Him.
I learned something today.
Again.
This is dunyaDunya. Not a place of ease. Only glitter.
The place where you have to feel cold and hungry.
The place where you have to worry and feel scared.
The place where it gets cold.
So cold, sometimes.
The place where you have to leave the people you love.
Where you can’t get attached, because even if you do, it doesn’t make it stay, it just makes it hurt when it doesn’t.
The place where happiness and sadness are only players, waiting for their next line in a play…
Competing for their place on stage.
The place where gravity makes you fall, and frailty makes you bleed.
The place where sadness exists, because it must.
And tears fall to remind you of a place where they don’t.
Where they just don’t.

And isn’t that just it? Isn’t jannah that place after all,
that place that Allah describes over and over and over in 2 ways?
La khawfun alayhim wa la hum yahzanoon
On them shall be no fear…nor shall they grieve.

But I’m still here, aren’t I?
The scar on my flesh reminds me of that.
The burn on my arm left a scar that I love.
I love it because it reminds me how weak I am.
How human.
That I burn. That I bleed. That I break. That I scar.
Yes. It is here that I am. Here that I fall. Here that I cry.
Here, just the same, that You filled that room, and lifted me to humbleness, and an acute knowledge of my own powerlessness and excruciating need for You.
And then you took care of it.
Of course You did.
Of course.
Like Younus, and Musa, and his mother. You took care of it.
You are the Peace of the peaceful.
The Strength of the strong.
The Lighthouse of Truth in this storm of lies.
So, I found myself praying for peace today.


dunya: this world
Jannah: Paradise
Younus: Jonah
Musa: Moses

About the author

Yasmin Mogahed

Yasmin Mogahed received her B.S. Degree in Psychology and her Masters in Journalism and Mass Communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. After completing her graduate work, she taught Islamic Studies and served as the Sisters’ Youth Director for the Islamic Society of Milwaukee. She also worked as a writing instructor for Cardinal Stritch University, and a staff columnist for the Islam section of InFocus News. Currently she’s an independent media consultant and a writer for the Huffington Post, where she focuses most of her work on spiritual and personal development. Her written works, including a book chapter on the portrayal of Islam post-911, have appeared in print and online publications worldwide.

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