Doing Good Deeds Even After Ramadan
One should continue to perform acts of worship after Ramadan to prevent sudden emptiness of the soul.
The rapid shift from obeying Allah Almighty in Ramadan to disobeying Him and moving away from His way after Ramadan has its reasons, the most important of which are the following:
• Absence or lack of sincerity during the acts of worship that used to be performed: This insincerity is exemplified in the person who performs prayer or pays charity so that people will see him. In doing so, he may achieve a certain rank, some material benefit from them, or the like. Such a person does not perform acts of worship with the intention of pleasing Allah Almighty, and achieving a great reward in the Hereafter.
• Absence of concentration during the performance of the acts of worship despite the presence of sincerity: This leads to the person not benefiting from performing such acts, not filling the heart with faith and not drawing his heart closer to his Lord, a thing which would have prompted him to persist in doing good and abandoning evil.
• Lack of moderation in acts of worship, being over enthusiastic and exerting much effort than that which each person can bear: This makes the soul change afterwards because it does not possess the quality of persistence. This happens although the Messenger (Pbuh) ordered us to do those deeds which are within our capabilities.
• Weakness of the soul and its yielding to the insinuations of the devil: This occurs because of the absence of good company, or the companionship of bad people who one is unable to affect, so one is affected by it instead. Another reason is abandoning acts of worship suddenly, therefore, one’s soul becomes empty and likely to be filled with devilish insinuations and love of committing acts of disobedience.
• The soul’s need for recreation after periods of patience in Ramadan: This makes it seek the utmost enjoyment, as compensation for what it has missed. So it indulges in pleasure until it surpasses the wide range of the lawful and enters into the unlawful.
In order to cure this shift, which may afflict some people in different degrees that vary from one person to another in degree and form, one has to apply the following means, the most of which are in fact the opposite of the above reasons:
• Gradual training to be sincere when performing every act: Each act should only be performed with the intention to please Allah Almighty, to gain His reward, and to benefit from it by enjoying happiness in this world and reward in the Hereafter. This can be achieved through hiding the act as much as possible, not mentioning it afterwards, and bearing good intentions while doing it.
• Gradual training on concentration during the different acts of worship through not performing too many acts and being moderate: What is important, for example, is not reading too many chapters of the Qur’an, but rather it is enough to read some verses with contemplation followed by practising what is understood. Furthermore, repeating one or two of the supplications of remembering Allah with due contemplation that moves the heart, is much better than repeating many supplications without gaining any benefit, and so on.
• Looking for good company like that which was available in Ramadan, merging with it, and clinging to it, for it serves as a shield against devilish insinuations. Keeping good company supports you to continue in obedience
• Avoidance of sudden slackness after Ramadan or abandoning the acts of obedience: One should continue to perform acts of worship after Ramadan even in a lesser form. Some rakahs of optional night prayer, some prayers in the Mosque, reciting some verses of the Qur’an, paying some charity, and doing other acts of obedience that used to be observed during the honourable month would prevent sudden emptiness in the soul.