Ramadan Reflections: Day 9 Nafs Hack with Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf

Nafs Hack: Contemplating Death

Assalamu alaikum. My name is Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, and this is my Nafs Hack.

When I was in Sacramento (prior to a game), I was taking my pre-game nap, and I had a dream. To this day this dream bothers me. I had a dream I was walking over a bridge, and right underneath the bridge there a was a fire—hellfire.

As I was walking, the bridge collapsed; when it collapsed, I went with it. But there was something that stopped me. And I didn’t want to shift and move my head. I’m looking up to see what prevented my fall, and it was a string of my hair. Then I looked down, and I was sweating, and then the fire was still raging.

And then the dream cut off.

When it cut off, the first thing that came to my mind—and I still get watery eyed when I talk about it—but I didn’t know if the hair saved me or, I didn’t know if the piece of hair eventually broke. So just thinking about that dream everyday pushes me to continue to move forward and to do as much as I can, because life is short.

The Qur’an talks about contemplating death because it brings you closer to Allah, so this is something that I try to think about all the time, because it influences me to continue to push.

I don’t want those odds; I don’t want to be that close.

If that’s what saves me, I’ll take it. I don’t want the separation to be much further than that.

I hope that this story helps those who it hear it. It definitely helps me, and, again, I hope it does the same for you.

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