The Blessing of Nature
I hadn’t realized the great advantage of living in a detached house until I moved into my first compact apartment 15 years ago. It was an almost daily pastime of mine to go upstairs to the roof in the evenings and enjoy the serenity of the night. Sometimes I went up early before dusk and dug my nose into a book until night fell. When I lifted my head, my eyes beheld a magnificent display of beauty. As the black curtains of night were drawn, stars assembled all over the stage. Some formed small groups and glittered in glee, while others stood apart yet shone in the same spectacular fashion. The moon, hero of the spectacle, beamed just as high with exquisite beauty. If you become a sky gazing expert, you will see different faces in the moon. Sometimes it smiled back with love, while at other times it shared the sadness with a gloomy look.
Another event that took place during this nocturnal meditation was the swift flying of shooting stars across the sky whose duty was to target intruders from the world of Jin who try to infiltrate the sky.
Although my eyes could not go beyond that breathtaking scene, my imagination did. It doesn’t hurt to set my mind free from earth and let it soar high into the world of Divine secret. As I thought about the Seven Skies and how only one was visible to the naked human eye, I tried to picture Heaven and Hell as they are described in the many Verses of our Holy Quran. I wondered what eternity offered in Paradise. No toil; no pain; no fear, no hatred. The hearts of those blessed people who enter Heaven will be as pure as crystal bearing no feelings of hatred or envy. Peace is their salutation. I also wondered if nights in Paradise had stars and moon. The more my mind was focused on the eternal life above, the less captivated my body was to earth. What is earth when compared to eternity? It is like comparing the incomparable!
This is how I spent my evenings on the roof of my big family house. Moving into a small apartment limited my imaginative power. Even when I looked out the windows, the scene was spoiled by tall buildings blocking the view. The lofty world of stars was stolen from me and my efforts to restore it were in vain.
Years on, my beautiful sky became corrupted with Israeli choppers and war planes which turned this once source of bliss into one of discomfort. No shooting star could rid the sky of these trespassers who spoiled its tranquility. But regardless of all that, the mind continues to be an amazing faculty which can’t be suppressed or restrained and thank God for that.