AMD005 - Night of Procession

According to the Islamic calendar which starts from the moon cycle:

The eighth month of the Islamic lunar calendar is called Shabaan.  The Sufi view specifies this month has great value.  The fifteenth night of this month is called “Shab Baraat” (Night of Procession).  

According to Sufi knowledge this is the procession of Angels in Heaven, under the law of administration of the Universe, named as “Takween”.  On this specific night, Angels who are serving the World are provided with their duties from the department of Takween, i.e. the angel of death, is given the bio data of the people who are going to die within that year.  All the angels from all the various divisions get their duties in the same way.

Many Muslims stay awake and pray for their welfare and prosperity in the coming year.  Then they keep a fast on the following day to celebrate the event.  On this occasion they make “Halwa”; Halwa is an eastern sweet, which is made with semolina, butter and sugar.  Every household makes this Halwa and distributes it amongst relatives, neighbours and the poor.

In 1963 – this was the second year of my stay in England – I had been away from all my relatives, my mother, my father, my sisters and my brother whom I loved deeply with all my heart.  On top of that, the culture and surroundings in which I was brought up in, up until then.  The month of Shabaan arrived.

I had a strange feeling as this month crept inside me.  I wanted to cook Halwa and celebrate the event like we used to do in my home country.  I began to start missing everything, thinking will my mum remember me on that day?  How can my sisters eat Halwa without me?

These memories lit up the desire to celebrate Shab Baraat, and I decided to cook Halwa and keep a fast as well.  At that time I only knew one family who lived nearby.  

I stayed awake most of the night performing worship and prayers.  The following day I kept a fast and cooked Halwa with all my concentration.  I dedicated this Halwa to the name of Prophet Mohammed (p.b.u.h.) liked my mother used to do, and gave some Halwa to my only friend.  

That night I was feeling very lonely and sad.  I went to bed praying that God and the Holy Prophet accept my little effort in this Niyaaz (Alms).  I fell asleep and saw this dream:

Prophet Mohammed (p.b.u.h.) came to my house.  As He entered in the main door I bowed and paid my humble respect.  He smiled and walked slowly to the kitchen, where the pan was sitting on the cooker.  Nearly half the remaining Halwa was still in the pan.  He opened the pan and ate the Halwa.  After he was satisfied, the Holy Prophet turned towards me and said, “Saida the Halwa is delicious.”  

Then He started slowly walking.  I saw a very long narrow path like a bridge in front of Him and He started to walk on it.  The bridge was so narrow that only one person could walk on it easily.  He then indicated with His hand to follow Him.  I obeyed His command immediately and started walking behind Him.  Then He recited these Holy Quranic verses aloud:

Surat Al-Fatiha: "Show us the straight way,
 The way of those on whom
 Thou have bestowed Thy Grace,
 Those whose
 Is not wrath,
 And who go not astray."

I did the same and followed His footprints.  We walked along that bridge which ended in a huge garden.  Prophet Mohammed (p.b.u.h.) entered the garden whilst continuously reciting the same verses.  I did the same and entered the Garden of Eden.