7 hours and 20 minutes

I hear a lot of people commenting on how they think life should be lived in a ‘Proper’ balanced manner keeping the right equilibrium between ‘Deen’ and ‘Duniya.’ We consider someone taking religion seriously in his/ her life an extremist and in our general view, a balance should be kept between Islam and our worldly affairs. The fact of the matter is that we being Muslims (or at least calling ourselves Muslims) do not have the luxury to differentiate between the two. Islam itself is sufficient enough to guide us on how to go about our worldly affairs and it is a consultation that is not optional (Unfortunate, as far as many of us are concerned.)


  From the very moment we open our eyes to a new day, a new morning, we have been given thorough guidelines on how to go about our daily business. The way we wake up, the way we talk, walk, eat, drink, sit, stand, dress, comb, smile, frown, in short whatever we do is well defined and explained in all possible acceptable ways in Islam and we are bound to follow them.
So, what about the ‘Balance’ we strive for? Does it mean spending our life in a 50-50 division of ‘Deen’ and ‘Duniya’ trickling it down to each and every day of every passing week and month?
Then lets take a look at how we are doing right now (for all those who claim to have the right balance.)
Considering a normal sleep time for most of us, 6-8 hours would be adequate leaving around 16-18 hours of conscious life in every 24 hours. Out of those 16-18 hours, 3 meals are taken usually consuming about 15-20 minutes each resulting in taking away another 45-60 minutes in total. The remaining time, approximately 17 hours.
Taking away our ‘way to office’ and ‘back to home’ time of approximately 1-2 hours each trip, it leaves behind 15 hours. Out of these 15 hours, we spend about 6-8 hours at work (gracefully keeping the lunch and other small breaks in mind.) What’s left is about 9 hours.
If nothing else in the world is done in those 9 hours other than spending time for ‘Deen’ and remembering ALLAH, than I would absolutely agree with those who say that a balance is kept by most of us in our lives as far as religion is concerned and nothing extra needs to be done and whatever extra is done would result in making a person fall in the category of blowing religion out of proportion. Because if a maximum of 18 conscious hours is maintained by us and we spend 50% of that, i.e. 9 hours for Islam, I give up!
Bearing in mind the fact that each Namaz (Prayer) takes a maximum of 20 minutes resulting in a total of about 100 minutes (1 hour and 40 minutes) which is a compulsion and not something we are given an option of not doing, so counting that in something being done for ‘Deen’ wouldn’t be the brightest thing to do.
The truth of the matter is that we even find it extremely difficult to take out the 100 minutes for ALLAH each day out of our ‘Busy Schedule’ in our ‘Oh so busy life.’
But even if we do subtract the 100 minutes, we are still left with 7 hours and 20 minutes that remain a mere question mark for all those who live a ‘Proper Balanced Life.’
Beats me!

Hammad A.Mateen


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