Wednesday, January 4, 2017

An Ustazah And Hijrah

So I had this conversation at school yesterday with an ustazah who had moved from her hometown to the big city. When I asked her why she moved, I was half-expecting work-related reasons, or maybe even family-related ones. Her answer was neither. She said that they needed to "berhijrah". I like that answer very much.

It showed that she recognised that she was in a certain comfort zone in her hometown, and as much as she might have liked being comfortable, she didn't like being stagnant even more. She said that when she looked around to see what there was for her to do and to achieve, she didn't feel that it was much at all. She said that she felt like her surroundings wouldn't allow her to grow, so she needed to move to somewhere that would allow her to learn new things, meet new people and ultimately grow as a person.

She also said that her feelings of being able to grow came immediately after moving, and she's currently taking big steps to improve herself as a teacher and as a person. It was inspiring to see a person so motivated to learn and become better. It was almost contagious, her enthusiasm for learning and improving.

I should be wary of making generalising statements, but her outlook and the steps that she has taken to get out of her comfort zone and continue to pursue what she feels is important makes me feel like anything is possible. Relocating isn't easy. Learning and getting better at a foreign language isn't easy. Saving enough money to pursue one's studies isn't easy. But this one person has done that, and plans on doing a lot more, so it gives me hope that maybe I'll be able to be brave enough to take those steps that I feel are important and worthwhile. 

It was also interesting to hear about how something as simple as a change in surrounding can affect a person so deeply. Just by being in a new place and surrounding oneself with new people, we are opened to a different outlook on reality. The ustazah was, as far as I could tell, affected positively by her penghijrahan. Of course not everyone is affected by the same thing the same way, but to know that positive outcomes exist in real life in the same immediate space as you brings with it a sense of comfort and hope.

Here's to the courage and hard work that is required to hijrah.

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