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April 22, 2004
Miles to go before we sleep...

by Nadia Khan

One of the questions that I always try to ask those, who having passed their youth, and having made major decisions in their lives are more or less settled is, “What are the three things that you would do differently if you were to walk back in your life?” So far, I have asked this question from my mother and a couple of aunties and surprisingly, the most common answer that I have gotten is, “I would study much more seriously instead of wasting my time.”
I have asked these questions because I wanted to save myself from making the same mistakes that were committed by those who being close to me, are most probably just like me. However, it is ironic that now when I am about to graduate in less than a month, I myself seem to have the same regret. I also wish that I could go back in time, become freshmen all over again and study much more seriously. It is not that I did not study at all but it is just that I did not make the best of my time, faculties and resources.

Alhamdulillah, at this point of life, I have a clear picture of what I want to do in my life. I know that had it not been for my lack of motivation before, I would not have been so motivated now. However, I just wish that I had my “personal mission statement” written right from the beginning of my undergraduate years. I just wish that instead of wasting my time, I had dedicated my whole heart to my studies.

My mother told me that you do not regret those things, which you could never achieve despite trying your best. It is only those things that you could easily have done but did not do, that leave you thinking “if only”. It is only the time that you could easily have made use of but did not, that haunts you relentlessly. When I thought about it, it made sense to me as well. On the Day of Judgment, the most regretful people are going to be those who had eyes but did not see, who had ears but did not hear and who had tongues but did not speak. However, if you have exerted all your power in doing something and still it does not turn out the way you wanted it to be, then you do not have any reason to regret. You cannot say, “what if I had done things differently”, because whatever the outcome is, it is the Will of Allah(swt).

Being Muslims, generally and being Muslim youths, particularly, we should always make the best use of our time, our abilities and our resources. We should measure out our lives with coffee spoons so that we are not extravagant with it. So long as Islam does not emerge in its true form, so long as poverty remains, so long as injustice reigns and so long as Muslims are exploited in the name of terrorism, we can never let go of our efforts, or to lose sight of our missions. We have a lot of promises to keep and we have miiiles to go before we sleep Inshallah.

of and relating to...
Ibn Muzaffar Syed Hussain said

Assalaamu 'alaikum,

MashaAllah Nadia, very nice article - very thought provoking. We do waste alot of time and I've had that regret since I was an undergrad. Hindsight is always 20/20 and you are always like what if this and what if that, but in the end we have to live with what Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) gave us and learn from our mistakes. There is a hadith that says, and I'm paraphrasing, that a Muslim doesn't fall into the same hole twice (or something similar). So it's our job, from now on, to not regret anything we do InshaAllah. And always remember to ask Allah to help us and make our intentions sincere.

'work in this life as if you'll live forever, prepare for the Hereafter as if you'll die tomorrow'

on April 22, 2004 5:08 PM
Faisal Akhtar said


Three cheers for sister Nadia.

Hurray Hurray Hurray.

Congratulations on graduating and our Duas are with you. This is a request to all remaining in Rutgers. Please remember in your Duas those who are graduating this year. May Allah give them the best in this life and the hereafter


on April 22, 2004 11:00 PM
Nadia said

Assalam u alaikum,
Jazakhallah brother Ibn Muzaffar and three cheers for you too br. Faisal :) May Allah give all of us the best in this life and hereafter. Ameen

on April 22, 2004 11:17 PM
Asma said

Salaamu'alaikum Nadia,

Very nice article, Maasha'Allah and of course very true also. Now that I am graduating I have so many things that I regret doing and

One of the things I regret is wasting time on things that were not as important but I spent too much time doing them. The other thing that I do not regret doing is volunteering my time and efforts to ISRU, however in some ways that might have drifted me away from studies but at the same time the satisfaction that I have in my heart to "waste time" on activities, events, etc at ISRU ...was 100% worth it.

So now I am confused? Did I really waste time or was this time the most beneficial aspect of my college life - that I take along with me as golden memories instead of regreting it?


on April 22, 2004 11:42 PM
Talal said

Those "what ifs" sure can get a person down when one dwells on them. But we gotta put our faith in Allah and strive to better ourselves in the time ahead... our time in the dunya is short, may Allah give us all the strength to do something GREAT with our lives. Ameen.

on April 23, 2004 1:10 AM
Talal said

I forgot to add:

That title is amazing, mashaAllah.

on April 23, 2004 3:36 AM
Ibn Muzaffar Syed Hussain said

Assalaamu 'alaikum,

As Muslims we have to keep in mind to have a balance between our Dunya and our Deen. Don't put our "worldly" studies to the side because unfortunately in this day and age, people are not respected if they don't have the worldly credentials. I'm not saying that you study to impress other people, but people won't listen to you if you don't have the background. Unless, you just go and become a scholar of Islam but whatever you decide to do, do it 100%. And remember, even secular studying can benefit Islam and we should always have that intention - that we are becoming doctors, engineers, computer professionals, financiers, business people, etc to give Islam a better name because whether we like it or not, people will look to us that this is how Muslims are like. So everything we do, Islam will either get a bad or good name.

Wa billahi taufeeq.
'work in this life as if you'll live forever, prepare for the Hereafter as if you'll die tomorrow'

on April 23, 2004 9:49 AM
Nadia said

Wa'alaikum salam,
"I'm not saying that you study to impress other people, but people won't listen to you if you don't have the background." That is so true br. Ibn Muzaffar. We all have to become doctors, engineers, and lawyers not for the worldly sake but for the sake of Allah(swt) and His humanity.
May Allah give all of us the hidaya to devote our lives to the Big Cause Inshallah :)

on April 23, 2004 5:02 PM
Jannah said


That short peice was amazing. Of course its not necc. new advice but it doesnt matter, the way you wrote it was as if I'm hearing it for the first time.

I am now getting off this comp and going to do my hw. :)

on April 23, 2004 11:29 PM
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