I heard adhan of zoher while I was in lecture hall, attending my regular class at university. Hearing the adhan voice I thought to offer prayer after the lecture ends. It was 2 pm by the time I got free after attending the class. And the next lecture was about to start at 2:10 pm. A ten minutes gap was in between the lectures. “ 10 minutes !!! Too short to go to the washrooms, perform ablution, reach prayer area , pray on time and then return to lecture hall”
“ It would take at least 20-25 minutes ! meanwhile lecture would start and I wouldn’t be allowed to enter the class once the lectured gets started”
I got free from the lecture at 4pm. My class fellows had a plan to go to cafeteria as it was lunch time. I joined them, “must go to cafeteria to have something to eat, I haven’t ate anything after breakfast”.
And moazzan started calling for Asar while I was entering cafeteria to have lunch with my class fellows. “ I think there is plenty of time for namaaz, i would be able to pray on time, I must have something to eat at first and then I’ll go for namaaz”.
“I think I can finish my lunch first, as it is hadeeth to have food first and then go for offering salah (if you have choice between the two, and there is sufficient time) “.
I finished my lunch and then went to washrooms for wudhu. And then I rushed to prayer area to offer prayer, still hardly managed to offer salaah in time as sun was setting. After salaah, while I was leaving prayer area, one of my class fellows joined me till the bus stop. She also had to catch the same bus I was waiting for. Magrib was missed in travelling to home.
By the time I reached home, I was too tired that I hardly managed to change take off my scarf and abaya, put my bag at place and just fell on bed. I had a plan to take a little rest before starting my university assignments. Thinking about the day I passed I fell to sleep.
I had heard that dreams are true, but the one I had now during my sleep was something very provoking and mind awakening.
I saw there are a bunch of people who are pushed towards a big deep hole. Moving slowly towards the hole, along with the group of people I was worried about what was happening, why were we lead to that hole! It was all situation of chaos, everyone in the herd was tensed and weeping. I asked one of the fellow man about what was going on. But he stared at me with stoned eyes and did not say anything in reply. Then I asked one of the guards who were surrounding and leading the crowd towards the hole. He told me that they are those who disobeyed commands of ALLAH and never offered prayer.
His words shocked me! I was one the people who were leading to hell fire because I never prayed! I was kind of a person who tried to pray regularly but couldn’t. Even today! I missed prayer because I was getting late for lecture. my mind started thinking about my whole day , how I missed my fajar because sun was raising when I woke up, how I missed my zohar salaah when I found prayer area far , and the maghrib salah when I was travelling to home ! Out of 5 prayers a day, I prayed only a single one “Asar”, but on the nick of time. If those people were thrown in hole who offered salah never , then why was I being thrown ! I did offer salaah , but not regularly.
I started shouting “ I prayed , I prayed , I’m not one of those who never prayed”, “ don’t throw me in hell, I prayed “.I was crying and repenting on my acts, I needed a second chance but there wasn’t. I was just near the deep hole. Everyone around me was sobbing and sighing. That crowd had reached the edge of hole now. And people had started falling in hole, 1st then 2nd then 3rd and the count was increasing. Sighs and sobs were now changed to loud screams and cries.
Crowd was finishing gradually and my turn was about to come. I was crying hard aloud, but no one was there to hear me, my voice was lost in the loud screams of pain and grief. Now I had reached the edge, view of the hole was horrible ! Red hot deadly lava was boiling and flames were rising so high that I can feel the extreme heat even standing at the edge.
And finally I fell!
I fell down, down and down…
it felt like there was no end of that hole…
I was crying hard, screaming and shouting for help, flames were coming nearer and nearer but there I wasn’t reaching the bottom of hole….
My heart was pounding, as if it would come out of ribs, as if it would burst before I reach bottom….
Suddenly I was held in the air by some helping hand , and I stopped falling.
Some hand was retracting me back.
I asked “who are you ? “
A voice came “I am prayer “
I asked “why are you saving me ? “
Voice replied “because only those are being thrown who prayed never in their life “
I asked “then why didn’t u come to help me earlier, why you retracted me on the nick of time ! When I was just about to hit the bottom of hole ! “
And the answer made me embarrassed, the voice replied” because you prayed on the last time, when time of prayer was about to finish “.
My eyes opened suddenly , I was wet in sweat, voice of moazzan from nearby mosque was entering my ears, he was calling for Isha prayer.
I stood up, to perform ablution to pray salaat-ul- isha, with a promise to never miss salaah and to pray on time always, because:
In surah Ma’un, verse no. 4-5:
“So woe to the worshipers who are neglectful of their Prayer.”
In Surah Nisa, verse no. 103:
“Verily Prayer is enjoined on the believers to be performed at FIXED HOURS.”