Originally Posted by Serinity
In another topic i said, our mind KNOWS things and remembers it, yet our heart forgets it. So knowing it is the trap of sheytan, but still falling in is the question what to do? The problem is not knowledge, the problem is imaan. However, the question that i am asking, what can we do to strengten our imaan. We already know what to do to strengthen our imaan, however based on logic and rationality i am trying to figure out the "secret" path.
I have for example, figured out some of the things to stay more firm and every time our imaan gets weak, we head back to that "secret" path. Although it is not so secret to be honest XD. So what is this path? I have observed myself often and pondered about the previous mistakes. It starts with having a strict routine, although sometimes you will deviate from this routine, but be aware of this routine and go back on it.
So, lets start with isha prayer. Do the Isha prayer at the mosque. Why? When you go to the Isha prayer, you already mentally prepare for what is to come. (The prayer). Beside that you do not think anymore of the dunya. Which means your mind is empty of all the nonsense and focused. When you have done the isha-prayer..do NOT have a chat with other brothers. Just go straight home and sleep. DO NOT EAT after Isha prayer. If you are still attached to the Dunya, your brain is still active. Which means it will for you take LONGER to get in to the REM-sleep. (Rapid Eye Movement). This is the phase of sleep that is important..which is the quality sleep you get. So why is this "quality" sleep so important? Sometimes when you even have slept maybe 7-8 hours, yet are just broke up. As if you haven't slept. This is because you have had quantity, but not quality of sleep. So you need quality of sleep and this can be achieved by a focused isha-prayer. I have witnessed that i automatically wake up before the night prayer, being all rested. I woke up without any alarm clock. Also during the winter dress the proper clothes, so when you would get out of bed, you do not feel the cold. Which sheytan cannot keep you in bed. When you directly after isha prayer go to sleep, your mind has become tired and body has become tired. So if you are tired, you should go to sleep. During winter times the earliest moment i go to sleep is after Isha around (19:00). I live by myself so you have to look if it is possible in your situation. This by the way can change during summer times, as the days are longer and the nights are shorter. But the same, just go to sleep after isha-prayer.
You can do your night prayer if you want as you have slept the quality sleep and are rested. You can also benefit that time during the night with other stuff, like reading or learning something. When your body has rested and your mind has rested you can easily absorb new information. I have also learned to be a bit active during your night prayer especially when start of fajr-prayer is near. As sheytan will try to make you sleepy, but when you are active, it is very hard for sheytan to make you sleepy.
If you are planning to fast, eat at least 7 dates or 9. I myself try to eat 7. Eat something like yogurt or something light. BTW, find excuses to fast if you yourself are not married like me. For example, i find the excuses to say..well when i was born as a baby i did not do Ramadan..so let me do those days that i did not do Ramadan. If you have done all of those, you could say..well there were a lot of those 13, 14, 15 of the day and every month day and Thursday that i did not fast when i was a baby..so let me also fast those now. As only Mondays and Thursdays for one year are like 106 days in total..not even counting other days to voluntary fasting.
Why fasting? I have read about Rasullah(saws) saying if one is not married, then better to fast as it is a shield for you. I have noticed that this indeed is true. When you somehow are fasting you are not tired, but not bothered or finding it hard not looking at women. You have no interest in them whatsoever. Sub'han'Allah very strange but satisfying feeling as you are very calm. Also what i have witnessed is that my body is somehow strangely very tight. As if i have been to the gym working out. I have more energy and direct energy. I am also more alert. The stronger your imaan is, then less fatigue you feel. The weaker your imaan is, the faster you want to break your fast. Even going as far as breaking your fast to eat because you feel the hunger, while not the case when you have a stronger imaan.
Go to fajr-prayer, walking or with your bike. Why? I have noticed that the air just before sunrise is SUPER FRESH. I SUSPECT that this oxygen has more quality than the oxygen during the day. As it becomes more warm and cars and people and other stuff hanging in the air. About 2 hours before sunrise i have noticed that is the COLDEST moment during the night..so really SUPER fresh air..even when there is less green and more buildings. If it was up to me and allowed i would follow the tradition of Rasullah(saws) to sit after fajr-prayer till after sunrise. As i am MORE then sure there is some benefit in it, but sadly mosques have changed ..they have become like shops =_=! with closing times. Any ways, after isha-prayer do NOT go to sleep. As i know of hadith i believe that Rasullah(saws) has said the the blessing is in the morning. When you have done your fajr-prayer and didn't go to sleep. The sun has risen, you will feel A LOT of energy. Around maybe 8-10 o'clock you will have that feeling as if it is already around 16:00-17:00 o'clock. That is the MOST BIZARRE feeling there is. You have suddenly UNBELIEVABLE amount of time. You still have energy and can do all sort of stuff. In the summer because the mornings are colder than the afternoons you have more energy and do not feel any fatigue.
When dhur-prayer is about to start you go to or do dhur-prayer..so again mind and body away from this dunya. Try to be as focused as possible. I have noticed that the more focused you are the more your body really is being rested. So those 6-8 minutes doing your prayer, it felt like as i have been sleeping for couple of hours.. o_O!?? My mind is very calm..my heart is very calm..my body is very calm..and all rested.I have also noticed that some imams are more quickly than others. And SUB'HAN'Allah, Allah(swt) made another solution you could say to that. Do the voluntary prayer to still get this quality prayer and get all rested. In the summer times if possible, go to sleep for 1-2 hours. Around 16:00 i have noticed that is the HOTTEST moment of the day. When it becomes hot during the day, we become slow and lazy. This time especially if possible better go to sleep. Before Asr-prayer when you wake up..eat something light..NEVER fill your stomach with anything. Always 1/3 food, 1/3 water, 1/3 air. I have noticed and experimented with this, that sub'han'Allah i have A LOT OF energy if i am not full. For example doing taraweeh at the masjid. You have a lot of energy :).
I have heard that it is not recommended to sleep after asr prayer. I have experimented with this also and i can confirm that you wake up a bit more lazy and less energy. This also will screw up your actual sleep. During winter..we still have to work, but during the summer we are already at home. This moment of the day, we can spend time with our spouse and children..visit family and friends. In the summer, i have concluded to NOT stay longer than Maghreb prayer.
Before Maghreb prayer get back home. Why? If you are fasting, you can peacefully break your fast, if you are not fasting, you preparing for Maghreb prayer. After Maghreb prayer, clean up your house ..do the dishes..every where that needs to be tidy. So when you later on go to sleep you are more satisfied with a clean and tidy house. By the way, also EAT SOMETHING after Maghreb prayer..even if you are not fasting. Why? To make for the body a habit when fasting and not fasting and having a routine. I try to always also eat after Maghreb prayer 7 dates. Dates i have read in a hadith are also a protection or some sort. Try to NOT watch tv, or on your computer or phone. Tv, computer and phone have this blue light. This blue light also comes from the sun. Which is a indication for our eyes..as WAKE UP. During this time between Maghreb and isha-prayer, rather spend time reading something or mentally preparing for isha prayer (restart of the cycle)
Also not to forget to make habit out of some things. For example going to bathroom and left foot in and right foot out with the dua. Or eating with right hand and what to say and trying to sit down..or whatever you do..saying bismillah. Or going up a stairs or going down the stairs. I have made a habit that every time i am walking on my own and riding the bike or driving in the car, to say "sub'han'Allah, wa alhamdulillah, wa la ilaha illallah, allahu akbar, la hawla quwwata illa billah". Also when going to fajr-prayer saying sub'han'Allah 100 times. These things are very light on the tongue, but have a heavy load.
I have also noticed that when you do that, you somehow build up more patience. Your heart becomes calm.
Forgive me for such a long comment, but these things i have observed and have made my imaan stronger. So knowing this path, every time my imaan becomes weaker, i try to get back on this path and i notice again that my imaan becomes stronger.